Living and Learning in the Pacific Northwest
I’m sure this helps me more than anyone else but here goes:
Charlotte Mason – We started with Five in a Row and then I read more about Charlotte Mason. I like living books, short lessons, nature study, journals, forming good habits, exploration in early childhood, and masterly inactivity. The recommendations for children under 6 or 7 is working very well for us. When it is time for formal lessons for Chandler next year, I believe this will be the best approach for him.
Waldorf — I like a daily and seasonal rhythm instead of a schedule. I like the emphasis on nature, imagination and free play in early childhood. I like the multi-cultural aspect and the stories for specific years when children are developmentally ready to hear them. We also love nature fairies. Forms and bean bag games might reappear too. An Unrushed Childhood has more resources.
Reggio or Project-based Learning – I like that the parent and child are co-learners. I enjoy researching a question or idea together. I like that ideas and projects will evolve when carefully nurtured. I like knowing that curiosity is our curriculum. The orderly part of my brain likes the documentation in this method because I feel it balances the free-flowing nature of the projects.
Tidal Learning — It is the best explanation for the ebb and flow of our living and learning together.
Unschooling – There is much I admire about unschooling but we do not call ourselves unschoolers. I have a need to document, follow-up, and nudge while keeping one eye on the standards — and this is not unschooling as I understand it.
Headsprout, LEA and Copywork – These are the main components of our language arts. Hunter’s next lesson is #60 and once he completes lesson #80 he will be reading at a mid-2nd grade level. He might finish it in first grade. Hunter is finally showing plenty of interest in learning to read, write and spell. I feel better now.
Arithmetic Village, Farkle, Monopoly and Living Math – These are teaching the boys everything they need to know about math for now. This combination is far better than Math-U-See and other math workbooks or curriculum for this age, IMHO of course.
Science – The more the better. We have plenty of books for experiments, various DK or Usborne-style books, and the kids are loving “Bill Nye the Science Guy” videos.
That’s it. I hope you will forgive me if I post less often.
Projects with Hunter take more of my time and Chandler wants to learn to read so we are doing some pre-reading activities. Their free play has recently changed too. Hunter wants to make gadgets and other building projects. Chandler is at loose ends. I know their free-play imagination days are not over, Hunter is just feeding his need to experiment and learn. It is everything I hoped for… We just needed to get back to our normal routine.
By they way, I’m reading and enjoying your blogs in my Google Reader but have not had much time to comment lately and usually have problems with OpenID. Please consider friending me on Facebook. We can keep in touch that way.