Having just finished drafting my post for the K5 Curriculum (even if it is six months late!) I figured perhaps I should also write a post for our PreK3 Curriculum this year as well. As my second child is entering into the world of academia I am learning some important lessons. While AppleBlossom was ready to jump and run early on and loves workbooks and “doing school” things… her sister is, well… a free spirit. OrangeBlossom should have been called PinkBlossom. If it is not pink, princess, or fairy related she’s not interested. All life must involved things that are pretty, beautiful, in skirts and sparkily is a plus. Sitting to “do school”, so not her thing. She will beg for school for a minute or two, and then flit here and there and yonder.
OrangeBlossom is my here, there and yonder child at three years old. Who know what the future holds!
Yet, with all that said… we are doing somethings successfully. Yet if it takes us years to complete it for her, that’s okay. After all, she’s only three…
My favorite addition to this year is Pathways from Barefoot Ragamuffins Curricula. We have a history with Sonlight Preschool levels, but Pathways is sooo much better in my opinion. We are using Pathways as it is written into Wayfarers Ancients. It is just enough and great for both girls to experience. There is a lot of use of storybook treasuries, chapter books, and vintage classics. Activities include pattern blocks, make it yourself activities and more. It is just right. She also sits in on many of the other readings as well.
Otherwise, we’re attempting to use Confessions of a Homeschooler’s Letter of the Week program. I really organized myself with it and other choice printables of theme and variety in the past year. But so far, she is just too free spirited to focus on any one activity. She’ll beg for it, don’t get me wrong. But she’s finished a minute later, and it’s still in a heap on the floor. Hmmm…
The one thing that I think she begs for more than any other that is really “school” and doing pretty well, although at her pace of focus (which is currently slow) is what we fondly refer to as “dragon phonics” also known as Logic of English Foundations Level A. You might recall that I did a pretty verbose post and review on Foundations Level A last year when we attempted it with AppleBlossom. (We loved it! and skipped ahead to where she is at in Level B and we’re loving that now as well!!)
Hmm… Let’s see what else. We are also using the Preschool Books Series – About Three from Rod & Staff Publishers. They would have been too easy for AppleBlossom and probably accomplished in a day, but they’re just right for OrangeBlossom when she wants to focus. Currently I believe she’s just started Book C – Count, Color, and Cut (I think). It was a bit of trouble to find someone selling them, but I recommend getting them directly from Rod & Staff (call and order).
I also have just received a newly ordered Christian Liberty Press Handwriting Kindergarten book In the Beginning. I have really appreciated the style and speed of Adventures in Phonics using it with AppleBlossom and this directed me to seek out their In the Beginning handwriting book from CLP. She has a HWOT PreK book that was soaked and she thus refuses to use it for “school” but otherwise was disenchanted with it even before hand. She is always wanting to have something like her sister and with this being a similar format to what she is used to with her About Three series, I think it should be a hit. I plan to introduce it after we’re a bit further in LOE and maybe after she’s finished with the D book from the About Three Series.
Lastly, other than just play life involving pattern blocks, Duplo Legos, games, puzzles, lacing cards, dolls, food toys and helping with baby brother… Lastly, we’ve jumped into a new realm with Memoria Press Simply Classical Leveled Curriculum. Now, I’ll try not to start a huge tangent here, but touch more on the program in future posts…
OrangeBlossom is a neurotypical child, in the feedback that I receive from others in the forum world of experienced homeschool mamas, she’s very normal, average, just like every other three year old girl they’ve heard of and so on. (That sure does relax a mama!) Yet this is a far cry from what I’m used to… I think at this time I can say that AppleBlossom is an advanced learner. While this is not to say that OrangeBlossom isn’t advanced in her own way, after all she did go from squalking baby noises to full sentences long before she turned two… and she was participating in pretend play almost before her 2+ years older sister was… and she sings songs all on her own… but she’s different to me. Thus said, teaching her is taking a different approach. And for us, so far we are having great success with a gentle approach of the Simply Classical Leveled Curriculum.
Skipping tangent on how to choose a level, remind me to post about that later…
Last fall I started using Level B with OrangeBlossom and she loves it. In the past month, she has started to want more, and now I think I’m going to go ahead and start Level C. Level B is aged for the neurotypical 2-3 years old and Level C is for the neurotypical 4-5 years old. Simply Classical Curriculum is developed for Special Needs children, and so far there are levels A-C available for preKindergarten work, but I hear that levels 1 and 2 are soon to follow. This curriculum is devised from the inspiration of the book Simply Classical: A Beautiful Education for Any Child by Cheryl Swope which I would recommend to anyone. Whether your child is diagnosed, different, or apparently average there is much wisdom in these pages.
As to anything else… it’s just life. Listening in with her sister, watching princess VHS unrestricted, having Frozen on repeat days, making cookies just because, and twirling to any music that just might be playing.
At a glance, Simply Classical Level C has many similarities with Memoria Press Junior Kindergarten (which I reviewed in detail with our experience with AppleBlossom starting right about the time she turned three, OrangeBlossom is a good 3.5 as of now). There are differences though, and aspects of Level C that I like so much more and I cannot wait to review it in detail for you soon. It is more gentle, but keeps most everything of Junior Kinder that I love.