School started back up this past week! Here are this year's curriculum choices:
Reading/Phonics: Hooked on Phonics, 2nd grade level
Language Arts: BJU Press English 2
Spelling: Building Spelling Skills 2 by Evan-Moor
Handwriting/Journaling: Primary Journal + Words I Use When I Write booklet
Vocabulary: Word of the Week Pocket Chart
Math: Horizons Math 2
Bible: Apologia "Who is God?" Volume 1
Science: Sassafras Science Adventures Volume 1 (Zoology) + recommended resources
Social Studies: A few atlases + Pinterest-inspired activities and recipes + Eat Your Way Around the World for other recipes
Art: The Usbourne Art Treasury
Other: Since this was our first week, I decided to focus on the above subject areas to see if there is time or even need to add anything else. We will probably add in a read-aloud chapter book soon like we have done for previous grades. I also want to add more outside time (this week was overcast and rainy so it didn't happen!).
Our First Week!
You can't tell from this photo, but Caleb was actually excited to start second grade on Monday. He just wasn't in the mood to smile. :)
Reading/Phonics: We jumped right into Hooked on Phonics. Caleb had moved through the kindergarten and first grade levels pretty quickly before, but we hit a wall with the second grade level back in first grade. Now that he has a little more reading experience under his belt, we returned to it. He's doing so much better! This first week focused on silent-e words; we pretended that the "e" was really a sneaky ninja. He doesn't make a sound himself, but he makes the other vowel in the word say its name! Caleb successfully read this week's stories and even read the first HOP book on Friday!
Language Arts: This curriculum is great. Each lesson is just a page, front and back, and each unit will focus on something different so hopefully it won't get too monotonous. This week Caleb learned the difference between a sentence and a fragment, how to find the subject and action in the sentence, and different types of sentences (telling, command, and exclamation).
Spelling: Since Caleb doesn't feel very confident with his spelling abilities, I got a separate workbook for that. Each week has 10 new spelling words (plus an option to add in your own 2 bonus words), plus several activities to help memorize them. I added a hands-on stamping activity as well since the "cover and spell" activity was more like a pre-test and made Caleb nervous. He ended up getting all ten words correct on Friday's test!
Handwriting/Journaling: Caleb completed two separate journal entries this week; he wrote about our "word of the week" and also copied a short poem about butterflies from our book Animals, Animals. The booklet "Words I Use When I Write" has a list of commonly used words for each letter of the alphabet, plus more spaces to fill in additional words, so it acts like Caleb's own private spelling dictionary.
Vocabulary: Since our pocket chart came with words more on level with third or fourth grade, I decided to create my own list of words for this year. This week's word was "eager."
Math: I think this is the area where Caleb feels the most comfortable right now! Math comes pretty easily for him, plus the curriculum kind of has a built-in review at the beginning of the year, so no new concepts yet.
Bible: The curriculum is a little more involved, so right now we're doing three lessons a week in case we have to catch up on something by Friday. This week we started learning about the parable of the wise and foolish builders, and what is means to build your life on the Rock.
Science: We read Chapter 1 of the Sassafras Science Adventures book. It's a fictional story with animal facts mixed in, so I'm hoping it'll be a fun way to learn. Caleb wrote down the definitions of "classification" and "observation" in his logbook's glossary, and we also read a couple of books from the library about how animals are sorted into groups. I added in a fun sorting activity as well.
World Cultures: This week's country was Canada. Caleb filled in a notebook page about Canada based on information provided in a library book plus Mommy's tablet. We also read a couple of library books featuring some of Canada's animals, and Caleb constructed six different paper bag animal puppets (puffin, owl, moose, beaver, fox, and bear). We also got into the kitchen to make two recipes inspired by Canada; the first was "poutine," which is french fries with cheese and gravy on top. This was a hit with everyone, though Micah requested ketchup with his. The second was a maple-iced oatmeal cookie. We actually made these when we studied Vermont last year, but Caleb pointed out that Canada makes a lot of maple syrup too (and there's a maple leaf on their flag!) so we made them again.
Art: I decided to try to do Art on Fridays. The Usbourne book I got has a different artist and/or style for each lesson. This first lesson was about the painting style of Vincent Van Gogh. Caleb learned about how Van Gogh used intense colors, and kept his paint very thick with the brush strokes showing. The inspiration for his "swirly landscape" was from Van Gogh's "Starry Night." He used posterboard, washable paint, paintbrushes, and a plastic fork for texture. He really enjoyed this!