Homeschool…how I started

I grew up in a homeschool family, the oldest of four myself, my mom taught me at home from second grade through twelfth. When I became a mom I knew I wanted to homeschool.  My husband being the main bread winner for our family, we decided that as long as I wanted to put in the time, I would homeschool the kids. 

Last year our oldest was ready for Kindergarten. I used the year as a test year. As far as I can tell it was a successful year. I’ve had several friends ask me what I did, what curriculum I used, how I planned, so I decided to write a mini series to give you a peek inside last year. 

To start I had to decide what subjects I wanted to teach in Kindergarten. There is so much one can cover in a school year. I decided the subjects I really cared about were math, reading and writing. Those I would focus on daily. Other subjects we would touch on were history, geography, science, social studies, art and music. Once I knew what subjects I wanted to cover I then had to decide what books and/or curriculum to use. 


 I had experience as a student with a few math curriculum and knowing how my oldest learns I figured Math U See by Steven P. Demme would be the best option for her. Plus my mom still had the manipulative blocks. I decided to start with their first book, Primer. For reading I started using the book Teaching Your Child To Read In 100 Easy Lessons by  Haddox and Bruner Engelmann. But shortly into the school year I was not as happy with the book as I had hoped, so I switched to The Ordinary Parent’s Guide To Teaching Reading by Jessie Wise and Sara Buffington. I LOVE this book. There is enough to learn in this book that we have kept working through it now in first grade. For writing I was told about the fantastic writing work books called Explode The Code by Nancy Hall and Rena Price. This series can be worked through at the students own pace. As we worked through book one we found it corresponded very well with Teaching Reading. For our kindergarten year we went through Explode The Code books One and Two. 

That left the other topics in my list. I decided to make a chart. On the left column I listed several topics, history, geogropy, science, music, music, food, reading, art, math. On the right column I left open. I printed off 26 of these charts and wrote one letter of the alphabet on top of each one. Then I brain stormed, I wrote down everything I could think of that corresponded to each letter in each topic. It wasn’t very detailed, but it was a good list. From there, I took each chart and I used one chart a week. Week one was A week. I did as many things on that list as I could make work that week. We picked apples, made apple pies, did an introduction to animals, learned about Alaska, each day we did one of these extra bits along side the math and English subjects. 

It was a relaxed year, just getting the feeling for homeschooling, by the end of the year my daughter could add, tell time, read simple books, and knew a bit of USA geography. I felt like it was successful. If you have any questions about our kindergarten year, feel free send me a message or comment on this post. – ❤️


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