NOT Back to School Blog Hop: Week 1... Curriculum


Although I've blogged about this before, I thought it would be fun to participate in the 2010 Not Back to School Blog Hop. Week 1 is all about curriculum.

Not Back to School Blog Hop

We will be starting our "official" 2010-2011 school year on September 7, 2010. We will be (loosely) using a three-term schedule.

Our terms will begin on these dates:
September 7, 2010
January 3, 2011
May 2, 2011

Before first grade, we will only focus on the one B and the three R's... everything else will come from daily play, life or through our reading. We don't do unit studies or themes... they don't fit either of our personalities.

This may seem like a lot (and it is), but there will NEVER be a day where everything is used. Many of these choices are either nearly complete or will not be used until another item has been completed. Please don't think that I make my poor son do all of this every day (in fact, we don't necessarily use any of this stuff EVERY day). Our "terms" and "plans" help Mommy pass the time. We are on no schedule and if it takes much longer to finish these things... who cares??

We will be adding some of these items mid-year, but they will be part of our curriculum nonetheless.



The Beginner's Bible
NIrV Read with Me Bible
My Favorite Bible Storybook

We will simply be reading one story from several bibles and storybooks each week. He will learn a short memory verse or simplified phrase from each story and recite it for his Daddy.


Phonics Pathways
This will continue to be our main phonics program.

Reading Pathways (formerly Pyramid Reading Exercises)
We have the older version (pictured), but the link above will take you to the revised (and retitled version). These reading "pyramids" really help with fluency. Robbie loves them. We will be using this along side Phonics Pathways.

Explode the Code 1
Explode the Code 2
Explode the Code 3

He will most likely get through book 2 this year and part (or perhaps all) of book 3.

READERS: Practice and Application

Bob Books, Set 1: Beginning Readers
Bob Books, Set 2: Advancing Beginners

We only have these first two sets, so we'll have to decide whether or not to purchase the other sets as we finish these.

We have most of the Calvert Kindergarten Readers (purchased used many years ago). I cannot link to them since they are not available outside of the full Calvert Kindergarten curriculum.

We will continue with the I See Sam books.

These are "read together books". We may or may not be using them throughout this year. They are available for free at

I read many of the I Can Read books when I was Robbie's age, so I look forward to seeing his reaction to these wonderful stories.

He will be working his way through McGuffey's Eclectic Readers starting with the Primer this year. I plan to have him read the lessons to me a few times to help with fluency. He will continue to progress through this series over the next several years.

Of course, weekly library trips for new (to us) books and story hour will continue as well as many daily read-alouds.



Our main focus will be continuing with his fine motor development through play-based exercises. He will be working with his Handwriting Without Tears Preschool materials as well as some very basic Kumon books.

I will also be making him tracing/copywork sheets using StartWrite software.



Activities for the Abacus: A Hands on Approach to Arithmetic
This will be our mathematics spine for many years to come. I prefer the hands-on methods given in this book to the worksheets that Robbie loves.

Essential Math: Kindergarten A
Robbie will start the school year over halfway through this workbook. I consider this as a supplement/other application for our Abacus Activities.

Horizons Math K: Book 1
He will not be too far along in this workbook as the school year starts. He loves it and it is very simple for him, but I know that Horizons advances more quickly than the Singapore (Essential Math) Kindergarten books. I am working on a plan to have him progress through the Horizons K books at a much slower pace that may or may not line up with his Abacus Activities.

We will be working through the numeration section of the Rightstart Math Card Games (and possibly some basic functions, as well).

Essential Math: Kindergarten B He will probably finish this book before the school year ends.

Horizons Math K: Book 2 He will most likely be somewhere in this book at the end of the year.

We also have an abundance of manipulatives.


Don't forget to head over to Heart of the Matter to read more posts like this one. As you can see on the calendar below, next week is school room week. We don't have a dedicated school room, so I'll have to post about the various locations we use.

I can't wait to read about what everyone else is using! I am definitely a curriculum junkie.


  1. It looks like a fun year! And it doesn't seem like a lot to me. You should see my list. LOL Sometimes it's just hard to stick with one choice because it all looks so good. =o)

  2. I will also be using Horizons Math this year, for the first time. And I'm using my very own Calvert readers from when I was in 1st grade (yes, they're I love them though!

  3. Here from the blog hop! :)

    It looks like you have a lot of great materials. I'm always fascinated to see how they're used in different families. My son shot ahead in reading when he was very young but is behind in writing/spelling... so we conquered Bob Books in preK but are only now working through Explode the Code! I love to see our familiar materials used in a different family.

    Have a great year!

  4. This looks like a great list of materials!

  5. My girls loved Bob's Books when we first started out . . . just want to wish you a blessed school year!!!

  6. Curriculum junkie sounds right! But oh, what a thorough and complete education your child will get out of it. Thank you for sharing on the NOT Back-to-School blog hop. This was a very interesting read.

  7. Ha! If I had posted a complete list for my youngest, it would have looked something like that. So many great choices! We never use it all - just a little here and a little there. Our son would be amazed to finish a book! LOL!

  8. Thank you for linking up to Show me your curriculum! Hope to see you link up next Monday 8/23 to Show me your classroom & homeschool organization! Enjoy your week! :)

  9. Awesome reading line up you have there! Some of the best curriculum around! I am following you now to read more about your journey with homeschooling!



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