Five in a Row: This is our core curriculum, and the only one that’s “nailed down.” Through FIAR we will explore social studies, geography, language arts, science, applied math, art, and music. You can read more about why we chose Five in a Row and how it works here.
Reading: We don’t have a formal or comprehensive “reading program.” At this stage of Alex’s reading development, I think that what she needs more than anything else is exposure and practice. We may occasionally use Progressive Phonics books, especially if there is a particular concept she’s struggling with, but mostly I just want to encourage her to read from real books. We have a number of early readers (Go Dog Go, Are You My Mother, Frog and Toad, etc.), and the library has a big section devoted to them. I’m not going to plan out what she should read when – I’ll make plenty of books available and let her choose among them. We’ll supplement reading time with various games from Peggy Kaye’s book Games for Reading: Playful Ways to Help Your Child Read.
Math: We’re planning to continue with Miquon Math, heavily supplemented with Games for Math, activities from the Family Math book, pattern block activities, and online math games. Again, I haven’t made an orderly advance plan of what I hope to cover. Some short-term planning might evolve as we go on, but Alex is so enthusiastic about numbers and math that I’m confident that plenty of learning will happen if we set aside regular time for math exploration.
Spanish: Alex enjoyed learning some Spanish in nursery school; also, research on language aquisition suggests that earlier is better. For these reasons we want to continue to at least expose her to Spanish. We have access to Elementary Spanish video lessons produced by Northern Arizona University. The lessons are designed for children who don’t have a Spanish-speaking teacher (that would be Alex), and are offered as 100 20-minute lessons at each of three developmental levels: grades 1-2, grades 3-4, and grades 5-6.
Ballet: Alex wants to learn ballet. We’re signing her up for a six-week summer program at the Peabody Conservatory, and after that we’ll make a decision about the fall. If we continue with ballet, that will count as Alex’s physical education requirement.