In this blog post I will be sharing my kindergarten homeschool curriculum choices for the 2021-2022 school year. This will be my third kindergartener to teach in our little homeschool, and I could not be more thrilled. This is truly my absolute favorite age to teach!
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I’ve been sharing in my Instagram stories these last couple of weeks a few glimpses into our daily homeschool time. I’ve had several people ask me about my homeschool curriculum choices, so I thought it’d be easier (ha!) to put my homeschool curriculum choices into a series of blog posts.
I laugh because a post of this nature inevitably turns into a massive post when given the room to expand. Maybe I should have stuck to stories on Instagram and shared the highlights with you, but alas, here we are…
First up, my kindergarten homeschool curriculum choices for my only girl in my sea of boys. This is going to be a fun homeschool school year!
I’m going all out on this post because I like to have too much information rather than not enough. If you’re with me on that, then this post will be for you.
Now before I dive in and share my kindergarten homeschool curriculum choices I want to explain a few things.
If you’re just getting started homeschooling, can I just say: I’m so excited for you! This is one of the best journeys you will ever go on.
It will stretch you in ways you didn’t even know you could stretch.
It will make you lean into the Holy Spirit in ways you never have before.
And you will find such beautiful satisfaction in knowing you have invested your time and efforts into educating your children at home.
Home educating your children really is an amazing privilege!
Would you mind if I shared a couple of resources with you that I wish I had when I was getting started homeschooling?
Resources for getting started homeschooling (aka, the homeschool resources I wish I had when I started):
- Ready, Set, Homeschool: A Step-By-Step Guide to Start Homeschooling by Ashley Weaver – If you’re just getting started on your homeschool journey, then I highly recommend my friend, Ashley’s, resource. Her guide is simple and clear, thorough and grounded in making homeschooling less overwhelming!
- Your Intentional Family: A Yearly Homeschool Planning Guide by Leigh Ann Dutton (that’s me!) – I developed my yearly homeschool planning guide to, well, guide you in setting your priorities for each year (and to save you from buying curriculum you’ll never use). It’s easy to lose sight of WHY you started homeschooling in the first place, and this guide will help you keep focused all year long.
Next, some notes on how we homeschool (this will vary from family to family):
- If I had to choose a homeschool philosophy, it would be Charlotte Mason style homeschooling. Do I adhere to all of her methods for kindergarten? No. I enjoy doing seat work with my kindergarteners, and they enjoy feeling like they are “doing school,” so our kindergarten curriculum choices are not 100% Charlotte Mason approved.
- I’ve never used an all-in-one homeschool curriculum with my children. I don’t think they are bad; I just never felt like they were a good fit for my family. I think when you’re just getting started, it could be helpful to choose an all-in-one curriculum if you’re feeling especially nervous about being able to homeschool your student. If you’re not sure how you want to go about home educating your children, and you’re feeling overwhelmed by all the information out there, then I really cannot recommend Ashley’s book enough.
- This year I have a 5th grader, 3rd grader, kindergartener, and soon-to-be toddler. We don’t do a lot of group learning in our home. This is much to my chagrin. To tell you the whole truth, I love the idea of a one room school house, but it doesn’t work for us. Therefore, each of my children have their own work, and on a rare occasion we might come together for a lesson or two. However, it is more common that I will pair my third grader with my kindergartener or my third grader with my fifth grader rather than all of us learning family-style.
Alright, I think that covers all the caveats (or at least the ones I’ve thought of up until this point), so let’s get to what you came here for, shall we?
I’m going to share:
- the subjects we are covering,
- how many times a week we hope to tackle that subject,
- the resources and curriculum I will be using for each subject,
- commentary on the curriculum choices, and, finally,
- my goal for my kindergartener in each subject.
Kindergarten should be fun, which is why I have simple goals that I want to accomplish for each subject by the end of the homeschool year. The goal is realistic and gentle, so I don’t push too hard. It’s also there to ensure that I show up with my daughter each week.
Okay. For real this time. Here we go!
Kindergarten Homeschool Curriculum Choices 2021-2022
- Jesus Storybook Bible by Sally Lloyd Jones
- The Random House Book of Bible Stories by Mary Osborne Pope
- Read several of Jesus’ parables from the Bible
My goal for my kindergartener this year is for my daughter to grow familiar with the stories of the Bible. Toward the end of the school year, we will transition to reading directly from the Bible, starting with the parables Jesus told.
By the end of the year, I want her to be able to retell at least one parable in her own words.
- Psalm 100
- John 3:16
- Ephesians 4:32
- Psalm 23:1 (but we will work on the whole Psalm)
- Proverbs 15:1
However, there are some foundational Scriptures my daughter hasn’t mastered yet since we memorized them when she was only a baby. Therefore, I’m going to start with the ones listed above, and by the end of the year, my one priority is that she can recite Psalm 100 perfectly.
(3-4x a week)
- Mother Goose Treasury
- Poems to Read to the Very Young (I got this at a used bookstore; linking for reference only!)
- The Random House Book of Poetry
- My Book House: In the Nursery
I love poetry, and I love sharing it with my children. No, we’re not dissecting poems, or even caring a lick about “what they mean.” We will simply read a poem (or two) a day together during Book Basket Time, and just enjoy hearing the beautiful language together.
Poems to Memorize
(1-2x a week)
- 5 Little Ducks
- Apples by Becky Spence
- Let’s Leap by Becky Spence
- Ooey Gooey author unknown
- The Present by Becky Spence
- Celery by Ogden Nash
- I Like Hearts by Nellie Edge
- The Little Man Who Wasn’t There by Hughes Mearns
- The Vulture by Hilaire Belloc
- Singing Time by Rose Fyleman
Resources I will use:
- This Reading Mama’s Poetry Packs (I’ve used these with my boys and they loved them!)
- Poetry Memorization from IEW
- A Spoonful of Learning Activities for 5 Little Ducks (I also like her Fairy Tale resources!)
My goal for my kindergartener is to memorize one poem a month, so we will work on poetry memorization once or twice a week (it will depend on the poem we are memorizing and how we are using the poem). Sometimes we will do activities to go along with poems, but most of the time we will simply memorize the poems.
(3-4x a week)
- Right Start Math, Book A
- Living Math Books
This is an area that has been the most difficult for me to feel confident in over the last eight years of homeschooling. I have tried A LOT of math curriculums over the years with my older two boys, but none of them left me confident that my children were getting what I wanted for them in this area of their education.
As a result, I spent a lot of time this summer in prayer for this choice. Additionally, I talked my husband’s head off, grilled friends near and far about their choices, stalked forums, and cried a handful of times before I came to my decision for this year’s math curriculum.
Note: I wasn’t necessarily crying over the kindergarten math as much as math as a whole. It’s not a deal breaker to get it wrong in kindergarten, but I wanted to start off on the right foot with her. As the old saying goes, “Start as you mean to go.” That’s what I wanted, so in the end, when I decided on Right Start Math for my oldest, I chose this math curriculum for my other two.
In the end, Right Start Math is the math curriculum I wanted from the get-go. However, I was intimated by the amount of manipulatives involved, the lack of worksheets, and the level of involvement for me as the teacher.
When I was just getting started homeschooling, this was where I felt the least confident, so I chose curriculums that reflected my need to “let someone else do it for me.” Now that I’m using Right Start with all three, I wish I had just started with it. I’m certain I would have figured it out (and saved myself the headache later of trying to supplement the other curriculums). But alas, we live and learn, right?
My goal for my kindergartener is to complete Book A, but I’m holding that loosely. I’m less concerned with “finishing” and more concerned with her having a solid foundation and strong number sense.
To keep things interesting for her, I will also be including living math book days for the sheer fun of it. By the end of the year, if she can add and subtract numbers up to 10, I’ll be tickled pink (her favorite color).
Phonics & Reading
(3x a week)
I’ve learned a thing or two after teaching two (very different) children to read.
My oldest learned to read extremely early. By kindergarten, he was reading chapter books by the arm load. I didn’t know any different, and I assumed it was my mad teaching skills. Alas, it’s just the way he’s wired.
My second son didn’t read as quickly as my first, and looking back I think it’s because he was rushed through the basics. I was too eager to get him reading (and he was eager to get to reading), but he just wasn’t ready to start when we did. Teaching him to read has been a labor of love, I tell ya’.
With my daughter, I’m going to camp out a little longer in the All About Reading, Pre-Reading Level. There are still some games we can play to ensure that she’s ready to start Level 1, and I want her solid in her letter identification before we start All About Reading Level 1. She’s really, really close, but not there yet.
However, because she’s eager, we will be playing with word building, and I will introduce some sight words to her as she solidifies her pre-reading skills.
My only reading goals for her this year is to move at her pace, not rush her, and end the year with an eager to do another reading lesson child.
(3x a week during school time; daily during Book Basket Time)
Instead of listing all the books I plan to read with my kindergartener this year, I will list the resources I will use to choose my books. These resources house the amazing book lists I will pull from, and some of them will give me ideas for enriching the experience together.
- Five in a Row, Volume 1
- Five in a Row, Volume 2
- Five in a Row, Volume 3
- Ambleside Online, Year 0
- Read Aloud Revival
I’m sure I’ll be sharing our book baskets and glimpses into her lessons on Instagram, so that might be a good place to follow along if you’re wanting to see specific books we choose.
My goal for literature is to share a complete feast of good literature with my daughter. Reading stories fuels the excitement for learning to read on her own, creates a special bond between the two of us, and trains her in attention. Therefore, the goal is simple – read, read, read, read as much as she will let me.
Handwriting & Copywork
- IEW Primary Arts of Language
- Journal “Writing”
I like the way IEW teaches handwriting while reinforcing letter sounds. My kids love the silly stories, and I love that it’s not all about “completing a page.” I can craft it to my kindergartener’s needs.
In addition, I’m going to have her make regular journal entries using some neat journal prompts I found here. I want my kindergartener to get used to getting her thoughts on paper. Truly, this is the hardest part for any writer (being willing to put the bad first draft down on paper!). She will be encouraged to draw pictures for now, but if she wants to write, I will let her try, and I may even transcribe some entries for her. I’m going to just follow her lead.
In addition, I will choose sentences for her to write (copywork) from time to time, but mostly I do very little with writing during kindergarten besides teaching them how to properly form the letters and let them play with story telling.
My goal for my kindergartener by the end of the year is to be able to properly form all of her letters and be able to copy one simple sentence.
(Once a week)
- Nature Study, at least once a month: I plan to make a scrapbook of flowers with her with a goal of her being able to name 6 flowers. I also want her to be able to name 6 trees and describe and name 6 birds. Additionally, we will study the seasons both in nature studies and math (Right Start incorporates it into the curriculum).
- Apologia Astronomy (with my 3rd grader as she is interested)
- Our Homeschool Co-Op: There is an entire months dedicated to STEM, science experiments, and more, which should be loads of fun.
Other books we will read during Book Basket Time:
- How Do You Lift a Lion?
- Is a Blue Whale the Biggest Thing There Is?
- What’s Smaller Than a Pygmy Shrew?
- Are you a Bee? by Judy Allen
Science is an area we take as it comes. I might have an idea of an experiment we can do, or she might ask a question, or we might observe something to prompt further study. I like to just follow the lead of the child in this area while laying a feast of ideas throughout the year through books, field trips, and life.
My goal for science is simple: train the eye for observation, practice nature etiquette, and expose her to God’s wonderful creation as often as I can.
(Once a term)
Again, another area we sort of learn as we go, but there are some basic concepts I want to be sure to cover with her this year.
- Maps: I will use Me on the Map and Maps & Globes. I want her to know what a compass rose is, identify her right from her left, and know where the sun rises and sets.
- America: I will teach her some basic history using books like The Very First Americans and If You Lived in Colonial Times. We will check out books from the library on Pilgrims, American symbols, and talk about 3 Presidents (George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, and our current President Biden). As holidays come and go, I will talk about them with her as well.
- Around the World: Finally, we will start exploring other countries using books like Children Just Like Me and How to Eat an Apple Pie and See the World. We will also learn about what people do all day using Richard Scarry’s What Do People Do All Day?
My goal for social studies is to allow her to interact with as many people as she can both in real life and in history.
Music & Art
This is where she will most likely just join her brothers as often as she is interested.
However, I will add a series of Come Look With Me books to our Book Basket for our special reading time, and we’ll look at a piece of art from time-to-time. All of my kids really enjoy our artist studies, so I’ll let her join when she wants, and just like with poetry, it’s not about understanding, it’s just about enjoying poetry with our eyes.
As for making art, I may get her an art subscription box from here. I’m using this one with my third grader, and it’s just so well done, I want to try the Mommy & Me box. We will also do some Art for Kids Hub Drawing Lessons once or twice a month.
Finally, we’ll be listening to music as we go about our days. She’ll sit in with her brothers when we study a new composer, and she’ll continue making her way through our piano app. She’ll also get an introduction to line dancing in our homeschool co-op this year.
All in all, I am really looking forward to our homeschool kindergarten year. She is so excited to be in kindergarten, and she’s telling everyone she knows that she’s started school already. She loves our time together, and it is my hope and prayer that she will still love it when we get to the end of the year.
That’s really my ultimate goal – to graduate an eager learner who has been exposed to truth, goodness, and beauty and is eager to learn again and again and again.
What about you? Are you new to the homeschool journey? What homeschool curriculum choices did you make for your kindergartener? I’d love to hear your thoughts and questions! Just leave them in the comment box below!
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