You can teach your Kindergartner at home. In many states, it does not require a special degree or anything to do it and the materials that are available for use in teaching are so easy to use and make it very simple for you to know what to do. I am a mom of seven children, this article will tell you what I have done for teaching my Grade K children in my home.
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Homeschooling Grade K Kindergarten – What to teach your Kindergartner
I start homeschooling Grade K with my children when they are at least 5 years old. In my mind, my biggest goal is to start a mathematics and reading program. I don't expect them to add or read well by the end of this year, but I want them to learn some math concepts, letter sounds and start putting the sounds together and if they are ready, they can add or read. If not, then maybe next year. Our state (Wisconsin, USA) presently doesn't require anything until 1st grade! That makes me feel better if I have a sick baby and can't do anything but ask my grade K child to count as he/she puts away 10 blocks plus read and sing to him/her.
Homeschool Time During The Day
I like to incorporate “school” into the whole day, though we only call our “Homeschool Time” 10:00 a.m. (after morning chores and breakfast are done) to 3:30 p.m., with a quick 30 minute lunch in between. I am also teaching them in other times of the week as we: do chores, make meals, tidy up, do laundry, go to church and church related activities, attend a homeschool Phy Ed Co-op, club event (like 4-H), or enrolled activity (like bowling, music lessons, archery, dance, etc.)
The reading and writing program I use is Sing, Spell, Read and Write Level 1 Kit. The whole kit can be found on Amazon or at rainbowresource.com. Just be sure to get one with the CD and not just cassette tapes (some come with both) if you don't have a cassette player. It has songs and games to play and phonics books to help the children learn to read and a treasure box of prizes. I personally refill the treasure box with treats or stickers. Older kids are allowed to play so they can win too. At this age, we follow the program that is planned out in the Instructor's Manual for Level 1 that comes with your kit. The Instructor's Manual in the kit gives a list of what books to read to your child so you can bring a few ideas to the library each time you go.
The workbook is called the Raceway Book, which comes with your kit or you can get here or at rainbowresource.com. It may take some years to get through Level 1. Do not rush. It is so important to do each step and learn it well and have fun as you go. It really teaches them everything they need to know to read and I personally do not ever teach Level 2. You really need the kit to tell you what to do with the workbook. I bought my kit new for a large amount of money, but have used it with 7 kids (and have one more that I plan to use it with) so I think it's a great deal. The teacher book told me what to do and I followed it and amazingly my kids learned to read! Some of my older children love to read and sometimes have two or three books going at a time.
Computer Reading Program
I like to use Reading Eggs or ABCmouse.com for my child to play on for up to thirty minutes a day. It's good to get him used to using a computer mouse, each one has fun songs to sing and it adds to his learning of phonics skills.
You might ask, how do I know what is expected for Grade K? This is my first time. I can't think of all that stuff. Don't worry, there is an amazing book that can help you for less than $15.
I love this book! Right in the first few pages it tells you what your child should be doing so you can work on it with your child. They cover motor development, social/emotional development, language, and cognitive development. One of the things to do in the motor development category is “can control his/her large muscles. He/she can hop on one foot; jump over objects; and throw, bounce, and catch a ball easily.” So if you don't have a Sam's club, click here and order this book on Amazon, start playing ball with your kid every day until the book gets here and you'll be doing school!
This book also has a checklist for you to check things off throughout the year as your child masters it. Topics are Basic Skills, Reading Readiness, Mathematics Readiness, Fine (Small) Motor Skills, and Writing Readiness. It has very simple pages for your child to work on with large pictures and large lettering for them to trace.
It covers: Basic Skills, Reading (just a little), Math, Time and Money (not as thorough as Saxon, see below), and Thinking Skills.
The very back of the book has teaching suggestions with 100 more ideas! One example is: “Discuss types of weather. Ask your child to identify the clothes that he/she would wear when the weather is rainy, snowy, hot, etc.” You have to get this book! I am surprised they don't charge more money for it. There is a new edition every year so yours may have a different cover.
Please remember that you do not have to do everything in this book or ANYTHING in this book. If you live in a place where Grade K is not required, you can do what you want. I was public schooled and I almost died of pregnancy-induced heart failure (PPCM). So even though God has healed me and I am healthy today, I realize that I will die at some point and if I die young, my husband is presently not planning to homeschool. I want my children to be competent at every grade level if they are suddenly put in school. This book helps me stress less. Even if we work on the same book for both Grade K and Grade 1; I feel better about it, if I read those pages of what is expected and my child can do a lot of those things. I often tend to think I need to do a ton more just because I don't know what is truly expected for this age. Now I have a nice list in the book to check off.
I use Saxon Math K. I like to have the complete kit with the spiral bound Teacher's Edition and soft bound Meeting Book. I also use math manipulatives. The teacher's book tells you how to use manipulatives. You can always improvise for some of the manipulatives or buy the ones you want separately. The Teacher's Edition is so nice because it tells you exactly what to say to your child! Just try not to “sound like a computer” when reading it as my first child told me I was doing! It covers concepts like patterns, counting with counters and linking cubes, sorting, shapes, graphs, money, time, writing numbers, calendar, Geoboards, dividing by sharing, matching, acting out addition stories with teddy bear counters, etc.
For Science I use Answers In Genesis. I like The Answers Book for Kids for all my younger children so the Grade K child hears those too. I like to read Inside The Noah's Ark For Kids, A is for Adam, D is for Dinosaur, N is for Noah books.
Bedtime Routine With Homeschool
The evening story time before bed routine consists of:
We sometimes read a little from a Children's Bible. My husband or I read to my children straight out of a NKJV Bible or Bible app on a Smartphone (if traveling) every day. No matter what. Even on the busiest day in the world, we at least read the Bible to them.
A Few Picture Books
In our family, the kids take turns picking books, (Mason and Miranda on odd days, and Megan and Mitchell on even days, for example), so it doesn't drag on too long. At this age, I don't expect them to be sitting still when I read, but I expect them to use an inside voice so they can hear me. I have found that even though it looks like they are playing, they are actually listening. Often they will run over and say, “I want to see that picture!” or “Why did he do that, Mom?” when I thought they weren't even listening.
Part Of A Chapter Book
I like to read Little House in the Big Woods by Laura Ingalls Wilder and continue through the series (Over about three school years, not all in one year!). If you haven't read one, it is about a girl growing up in America in the old days before electricity and modern appliances. She describes in detail how they did things back then for survival. My kids appreciate what they have and are amazed at how the Ingalls' did it. I feel like I am teaching a little History with that. While I am reading, I let my Grade K child play with Little House paper dolls.
We also pray together and tuck the young ones into bed at night. That's our homeschool day!
Keep in mind this is what I choose to use for homeschooling my children, it doesn't mean you have to. You get to choose what you want to teach. Just have fun and happy homeschooling!
- Sing, Spell, Read and Write Level 1 Kit
- Reading Eggs
- Comprehensive Curriculum Grade K
- toy musical instruments
- children's music CD
- Musik at Home
- paperpie Books, Puzzles, Learning Wrap Ups and SmartLab Toys
- Picture Books
- Saxon Math K
- Math Manipulatives
- The Answers Book for Kids
- Inside The Noah's Ark For Kids
- A is for Adam
- D is for Dinosaur
- N is for Noah
- Children's Bible
- NKJV Bible
- Little House in the Big Woods
- Little House paper dolls
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