As we start to wrap up our 1st grade year I thought I would go ahead and let y'all know what I thought about our curriculum choices, what worked and what did not. Of course we used our Timberdoodle Curriculum. I will go by class so first up is English. For English I count everything that goes into it as one class. So, reading, spelling, grammar and writing are what I call English. My main goals where for her to improve on her reading and start to spell more on her own. If you have read our post before than you know I did an extended year because I wanted our daughter to get better at reading. Well then come to find out she was where she should be and then I felt down for not continuing like we normally would have. She has hit all the goal I original set so I call that a win for sure. When I asked her what she thought of English class she said " I really like the games because they are fun even though reading is quite hard."
The next class is math. I was really surprised to see that they had solving for the unknown in her math but then it turns out that that is what they are doing now in 1st grade math. Our daughter is able to do every kind of problem that was shown in the textbook without help from me. She has memorized a lot of her math facts so that she does not even need to use the blocks that come with Math-U-See. Here is what our daughter thinks about math, "I think math is very good and my favorite thing is doing mystery number." Mystery number is something that I do in addition to Math-U-See were I say a number and we each write down the number then see if they match.
Our next class is thinking skills. Not everyone does a thinking skills class but it teaches critical thinking which I think is an important skill to learn while you're young. I find this is one of the more interest classes to teach because you really get to see how your child thinks and how creative they can be. It is mostly games and then workbook pages with questions that require the child to think about the answer rather than responding with memorized facts. Our daughters thoughts on her thinking skills class were "The class is fun because the games are really interesting and cool." All of the games we play at school are education.
I also teach history even though it is not required in our state. Anything that is related to history I call our history class. These things will include geography, history and social studies. I am amazed that our daughter is able to remember everything from the beginning of the year from the Story of The World textbook as well as our geography and social studies books. She can easily complete the student books that accompany the textbook. I am very proud of how well she does with history class and we always finish the work in no time at all. Our daughters thinks history class "I like history a lot because I find the past interesting."
The last core class we do is science and just like with history it is not required in our state but I teach it anyway. I love the way Building Blocks is laid out and that the textbook illustrations are done in a super kid friendly way. We do experiments and have a student workbook that goes along with the textbook. Just doing the textbook is enough for our daughter to be able to understand the concepts and remember everything. Doing the workbook is just something extra to make the class even more fun. "I love science because the experiments are so much fun especially when they explode." is what our daughter had to say about this class.
We do other class like STEM, art and other additional things but I do not do test, quizzes or reviews on these. The reason being is that they are just extra things to do in between our other classes. We do projects every month and have little projects each week. Not everything in school needs to be educational. Some classes are really just for fun. Out of all of our additional things we do our daughter likes gymnastics the best. "The bar is the most fun thing at gymnastics because I get to do mermaid." said our daughter when asked what her favorite additional thing was.