Friday, 18 July 2008

Home Ed reading list and a day in primary school

Having recently been to the HBLN trade fair and with Jeff on holidays, I've been reading quite a few home education books lately. Here's the list:
A Biblical Home Education by Ruth Beechick
The Three R's by Ruth Beechick
A Charlotte Mason Education by Catherine Levison
More Charlotte Mason Education by Catherine Levison
The Seven Laws of Teaching by John Milton Gregory and
Teaching the Trivium by Harvey and Laurie Bluedorn.
I haven't finished reading the last two, but I have read the last one before. I found the first less useful than I had hoped, but the second and third on the list had lots of helpful, practical ideas.

They've given me food for thought and Jeff and I have been chatting about how he wants our second semester to move along. It has been great to have his input because I can bounce ideas off him and he also keeps me on the straight and narrow, so I don't go off on any hare-brained tangents.

On Jeff's advice, I also took advantage of our friend Ros coming over to babysit a few days ago to pick her brains about what a day in school looks like for pre-primary (K5) and grade 1 students. She teaches one day a week with students in these grades at a local public school and is studying the rest of the week at Theol College with Jeff. Here's a summary of how her students' day goes:
Weather / Day chart / Date
30min Daily writing (Y1 1pg+ recount style writing, PP draw picture + sentence caption)
30min Further language activities (Y1 Phonics Patterns book, PP indoor activities with rhyming/opposites/matching jigsaws, copying patterns, sequencing pictures etc)
Sports eg ball skills outside
Recess/PP Fruit time
90min Maths (Activity then Y1 worksheet/PP oral work, PP indoor activities with colour matching, dominoes etc)
Construction eg meccano, lego, threading
Lunch
20-30min Y1 quiet reading, PP rest & listen to stories on tape
20-30min News telling oral language practice then barrier games (following directions) building up to battleships
45min Science (PP do same concepts as Y1 without as much writing) [On other days this time slot would be taken with SOSE, Art/Music/Craft etc]
Pack up for end of day.

Hearing Ros talk about her day I realised that the kids at school do a lot of play-based activities designed to build reading skills, but there is very little time devoted to listening to stories being read aloud. Which is pretty sad, because who wants to go through the hard work of learning to read if they've never heard any wonderful stories to inspire them?

However, reading these books with the ideas on homeschooling methods as diverse as traditional, Charlotte Mason learning through literature, Ruth Beechick practical learning and classical, has given me many ideas to work with for the next semester. And having talked things over with Jeff, I now have a daily schedule which I think will help me to achieve all these homeschooling plans and still keep up with the housework and have time playing with the littlies as well! More to follow...

1 comment:

mom24 said...

Heavens, how do you get so much reading in? I have 2 books that I NEED to read to help me expand my teaching methods to use right brain techniques but I haven't a minute to complete a chpt let alone a paragraph! With 4 kids, I never can think straight enough to keep focused and am too tired after my hs planning in the evenings.....
I need to improve my reading skills, huh?

It's good to keep dh involved and active - not all hs moms do that, but it's quite necessary for your academy!
Blessings,
Andrea