1st year homeschooler!


1st year homeschooler!

Yeah, none of you are surprised. You know I’m pumped and unpolished, raw, rough around the edges, green {in the new-at-this way not the environmental way } when it comes to the thing we call “home education”. I know nothing…at least not yet.

Our oldest just turned 3 in June. I know that in most homeschool realms they don’t consider preK technically school yet {because you don’t have to get paper work done to pull your child out of public school} but we are attempting to treat  it just like School! I want to learn everything I can, in the next 2 years, about how to ‘do’ this thing called homeschooling so when we have to start the years that the state mandates we’ll be on track. I’ve already learned there is too much to learn which makes this goal an impossible  yet exciting endeavor to strive for.

Homeschooling has changed so much in the past few years. There are so many different ‘ways’ to homeschool.
So many

  • ‘methods’- “Classical? Charlotte Mason? Unschooling?”
  • ‘curriculums’- There’s an entire book with just the “100 Top Picks for Homeschool Curriculum” 
  • ‘support groups/coops’- too many to even simply explain
  • and other endless terms I’ve yet to learn.

The possibilities are endless. With 3 tiny ones, the simple routine of just loving on , feeding, laying down/getting up from naps, running errands, shopping, church activities, and managing a household, I don’t have time to even scratch the surface of what’s out there to read on how to do all these things, much less try them out and decide which are best for my family. SO, the next 2 years will be an attempt at trying to figure that stuff out.

What  ‘methods’, ‘curriculums’, ‘groups’, and ‘options’ have you chosen for your family? Maybe I’ll leave it up to a vote. lol

So far this is what we’ve started:

  • Way/Method: “learn as we go”. Our Magdalene does great with memorization so if we simply repeatedly tell/teach her things during everyday living she seems to pick it up quickly. Hearing a lot from respected friends about Charlotte Mason– looking into for the near future.
    1. Getting dressed can be a math lesson- count legs as they go into pants, color lesson- name every color on clothing, alphabet lesson- name letter on clothing, read words, sound out letters, identify catipal and lower case letters, or even an opposites lesson- clothes are off/ on, clothes are up/down, arms and legs are in/outside of clothes.
    2. Eating can be a math lesson- count food, color lesson- name every color of food, alphabet lesson- name letter on food labels, read words, sound out letters, identify capital and lower case letters, or even an opposites lesson- food is in/outside of container.
    You get it.
  • Curriculum: HIPPY!
    “Home Instruction for Parents of Preschool Youngsters (HIPPY) is a home-based, family focused program. The Curriculum, designed for children ages three, four, and five, contains 30 weekly activity packets, nine storybooks, a set of 20 manipulative shapes for each year, as well as supplies such as scissors and crayons are provided for each participating family. The program uses trained coordinators and community-based home visitors who go into the home and role-play the activities with the parents and support each family throughout their participation in the program.The packets are written in a clear scripted format that is designed to provide guidance for parents and to ensure a successful learning experience for the parent and child working together in their own home. Parents become the facilitator in the learning process with their child. The HIPPY curriculum is primarily cognitive-based, focusing on language development, problem solving, logical thinking and perceptual skills. Learning and play mingle throughout HIPPY’s curriculum as parents expose their children to early literacy skills such as:

    • Phonological and phonemic awareness
    • Letter recognition
    • Book knowledge
    • Early writing experiences

    In addition, the curriculum fosters social/emotional and physical (fine and gross motor skills) development. The storybooks bring children’s literature into the home. HIPPY provides numerous opportunities for children and parents to discuss the storybooks in varied and increasingly complex ways.

      HIPPY is not a curriculum of mastery, but rather a curriculum of exposure to skills, concepts, and experiences with books that together constitute “school readiness” for young children. Skills and concepts are developed through a variety of activities including:

    • Reading
    • Writing and drawing
    • Listening and talking
    • Singing and rhyming
    • Playing games
    • Cooking and sewing
    • Shapes and colors
    • Puzzles and more

    The storybooks and activity packets are available in both English and Spanish for all ages. The HIPPY curriculum activities are constantly reviewed and updated in order to ensure that the materials are relevant for our families and reflect current educational research findings.”

  • Support Group/Coop: we will be participating in all HIPPY meetings and working on finding a local group as well
    *Anyone in a good homeschool group/coop in White Hall or Little Rock?
  • Other endless terms I’ve yet to learn: we begun {in an attempt to stay consistent} is a mixture of several things I’ve read or experienced in preKs I’ve worked: Sue Patrick’s “Workbox System“, “Morning Board”, “Calender”, “Circle/Carpet Time“, “Character Concepts“, and “Choir Chart” all rolled in one.

“Good Morning Board/Chart(s)/Calendar”

 {My Aunt gave me this calendar several years ago- Mother-in-Love helped me update the year(s)}

{We LOVE us some Veggie Tales! Plus these are part of our “Charater” lessons}

{These are the previous months from our calendar to add decor to our homeschool room
as well serve as reminders of “Character Concepts”}

 {I found this “pocket chart” on Oriental Traiding (teacher supply section) and created my own pictures for our routine/chore chart}

{I used some of the same pictures from our other chart to make these “routines”}

Well, that’s our basic start to homeschooling. I’ll elaborate more on our “Good Morning Board/Chart(s)/Calendar” in my next post.


I hope you checked out some of the links I shared! Maybe they can help narrow a search of yours like they did me.
I’m always looking for good advise to narrow mine so PLEASE share any links, methods, words of wisdom on
homeschooling {insert term here}!!!

photo credit: overwhelmed-kid


About as Jules is going

Julie Rothacher is a missionary currently serving in central Arkansas, with her husband of 10 years, as youth ministers. She and Matt have 4 children, Magdalene (6years), Isabella (5years), Benjamin (4year), and Elizabeth (1year). God is leading Julie and her family on fun adventures. She is new to blogging but loves sharing what God is doing in her life which include but are not limited to the simple silliness of every day quirkiness that happens around her home with 4 under 6, a hilarious husband, and their newest endeavors: homeschooling and CHURCH PLANTING!

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