Saturday, December 14, 2013

Preschool: K4 - Letter A, My Little Pony's December and I'm doing my first post about our home preschool for the year.  The good thing is, it's only been 2 weeks since we finished the unit, so I may be behind in actual school lessons, but not blogging about them! ;)  Of course, this was not my intention.  I've blogged before about my plans of starting school in September and then taking a break in October while we adjusted to Miranda.  Obviously, with Miranda being born early, that didn't go as planned.

Although Mackenzie goes to preschool 2 days a week, she was asking to do our school quite a bit.  We (I) finally got our act together and had our first school lesson in mid November.  Mackenzie was super excited about it.  This year, I'm using Carissa's Raising Rock Stars Kindergarten packs as the main lessons.  Mackenzie really liked the Raising Rock Stars Preschool curriculum we used two years ago, so I thought I'd make it fairly easy on myself by using a premade curriculum.  I'm also going to incorporate the memory verse for each unit into our devotionals for both girls.  My plan is to add other activities and crafts to these units, including our continuation of the You Can Read sight word curriculum.  Can you tell my favorite blogger is Carissa at 1+1+1=1? ;)

Notebook Time:
I expanded our notebook this year to include more calendar time and writing, rather than just songs.  I downloaded these printables from Confessions of a Homeschooler.  We don't do everything, but I am introducing the concepts.  I'm pretty excited about this first sheet.  She will write her name  every month and we'll see the handwriting improvements along the way.
I put the sheets in page protectors and she enjoys using the wet erase markers to write the days of the week and dates.

Since she already loved the daily drawing sheets from 1+1+1=1 that we were doing last year, I kept those in.  On this first day of our school, she decided she needed to fill in all 4 squares.  This is her pondering what she should draw next.

Like the RRS Preschool packs, the RRS Kindergarten is based on the book My ABC Bible Verses by Susan Hunt.  We'll be learning the same memory verses as last time, but through different activities and hopefully a little more depth of meaning.  We started with letter A and will be going in alphabetical order.

The memory verse is "A soft answer turns away wrath." Proverbs 15:1.  This is a great verse, especially for little ones who argue and also when children are a little sassy and for us adults too!  Mackenzie, Meredith and I talked about the verse together and what "soft" and "wrath" meant.  I had intended to do a craft with the verse, but didn't get around to it.  However, application of the verse was made (and still is) several times in the two weeks we spent on the lesson.  On one occasion, Mackenzie gave a little too much attitude when she was talking to me and I responded badly, by yelling at her.  I then reminded her of the memory verse and said that had she used nice, "soft" words, she might have turned away my "wrath."  That made her upset and cry because I had said "wrath" which she knew meant I was angry with her.  We both apologized to each other and learned that this verse applies to both kids and adults and can change a situation greatly just by remembering to use soft words with each other. 

Here she is tracing her verse...
She traced the verse again another day and then cut and glued them in order.

The sight word for this lesson is "away".

She used "soft" and "away" in sentences for me to write down...
Learning sign language...
I really like this listening sheet.  She listens to my instructions as to what color or markings she has to put on each shape.  She actually messed up the last one, I believe, so I'm glad we are doing this.  She tends to talk constantly while we are doing these things and doesn't always pay attention to what she should be doing.  This particular activity helps her to concentrate on what she is supposed to do.

Speaking of following instructions...whenever an activity says to circle the matching item, she always decides she wants to cross out the non-matching objects.  The letter A sounds worksheet was no exception! ;)
One of my favorite things we did was for me to write down a story that she dictated to me.  The instructions were to look at the picture in the corner (from our memory verse) and tell a story about it.  This is the picture:
This is the first time I think we've ever done something like this, so she struggled a little bit with making the story about the picture.  The mother and children sit down like the picture for one small sentence in the story! ;)
It's very random, but cute.  I'm looking forward to doing these each unit!  The RRSK units included a few other activities, but I don't have pictures of those.

Letter A:
We did a couple more letter A activities outside of the RRSK curriculum.  Tracing A's...
Since she likes to draw, I thought some drawing sheets from 3Dinosaurs' Romping Roaring A printables would be great.  She had to draw certain things that started with A.
I love that her animal is an "angry polar bear."  She wasn't quite sure what armor was, so I drew a helmet and shield on another piece of paper (see below).  I thought she drew the helmet pretty well.

She also wasn't sure how to draw an astronaut or air plane, so I offered some very crude drawings.  Again, I'm impressed with her own drawings below.

YCR/Sight Words:
As far as sight words, we picked up where we left off this summer.  We started unit 7 of You Can Read and learned "to", "run", "find" and "play".

Coloring the color by number sight words.  This is an instance, like I mentioned above, where she's so busy talking, she forgot to switch colors and colored the r and u the same.

We also used 3Dinosaurs' sight word path printables.

Since we started at the beginning of the alphabet, I started at the beginning of the number line too.  Tracing 0's
We used the rhyming ladders from Confessions of a Homeschooler's Pre-K printables for the first time and they were a little hard for her.  She could rhyme pretty well, but I think trying to write the first letter was a little confusing.  I think we'll wait a month or two and try again another time.
One of her favorite things about preschool is getting to learn Spanish.  She has a Spanish class for 30 minutes once a week and loves it!  I thought this was a perfect opportunity to use or spanish color cards from Homeschool Creations.  She most likely used the color swatches to match the words, but she is learning the actual color words in preschool, so she did "read" the colors also.
We also did this puzzle match game.  I love things like this because it causes her to think about letter sounds, but 26 letters is A LOT!  And with Mackenzie talking and playing with each match before starting another one, it takes FOREVER! ;)

Theme Pack:
As an added bonus, she worked on some My Little Pony printables, also from 1+1+1=1. (Carissa has a daughter a little younger than Mackenzie, so she tends to create the printables that are of interest to us, too.)

She wanted to use Halloween stickers instead of dot markers for this sheet.

She never tires of these tracing sheets...
Or the "what's different?" sheets...
When Meredith was working on her Doc McStuffins 1:1 sheet, Mackenzie was right next to her doing My Little Pony.

Tracing shapes and matching pony names...
She liked the color book and recognized a lot of the words.  Not sure if its because the pony was that color or if she new the word.  I need to pull out a color word activity that isn't colored to see how she does.  Maybe on the next unit.
Counting practice with a number puzzle and number paths.  She does well with recognizing numbers in order, but if I ask her to point randomly to the numbers 12-19, she's not as confident.  We just need to work a little more on recognition of the teen numbers, not just number order.

I finally used the toilet paper cardboard tubes I've been saving up - we painted apples!

We also painted leaves and other things...

For her birthday, Mackenzie received a bucket of art supplies.  We opened it up and she chose a craft to make out of the packet.  She used the picture as a "shopping list" to gather supplies.
Then she started crafting...
It had to be exact! ;)  She had so much fun, she made even more silly paper faces.

We took about two weeks to do this unit, but she had a lot of fun and so did I.  I felt like we were finally back to our "normal" schedule since Miranda's been born.  We started working on the letter B this week, so hopefully we'll stay sort of on track and finish the alphabet before she starts Kindergarten in the fall! ;) 

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