Despite TLE showing that she was she was ready to write on her own in September, there hasn’t been much progress though she has taught herself some letters since then. I figured that her preschool would be taking the lead in teaching the kids the alphabet but aside from writing (tracing) her name at school, I haven’t seen too much that would indicate that they’ve gone beyond that.
As far as kindergarten readiness goes, she’s met all the recommended milestones for showing that she’s ready; arguably she met those some time ago. She recognizes most of the alphabet but I’ve noticed that she’s not always connecting the right sounds to the right letters. She does recognize numbers and can count up to 15 but sort of gets muddled after that. She continues to “write” and “read” on her own but I think it’s time to give her a more solid foundation than she’s been getting.
So I’ve decided to take matters into my own hands, which I probably should have done in the first place, by doing a pseudo-homeschool program for her at home. Yeah, this despite the fact that I don’t know what we’ll be doing in the fall. I sort of feel like I’m stepping on the toes of her preschool though don’t think she’s really getting what she needs (and has shown she’s capable of) at the moment.
As appealing as the idea of unschooling is, I discovered that it’s incredible intensive to facilitate if you’re not already naturally inclined to it, especially with a capricious four year old. Her interests change by the minute so by the time I could find the resources to point her in one direction, she was already running off in another. I know we both go less crazy with some semblance of a plan in place so I’ve drawn up 12 week curriculum for us to try out. I figure it’s a decent test to see if we can handle a loosely structured curriculum and if I can, in fact, teach her at all.
I put together a preliminary plan that is structured but flexible — two letters and numbers per week, reviewing every four to five weeks, depending on her progress. Most of it is just review but Since TLE loves using her laptop, we’ll be using ABCMouse and Starfall. In the past, I’ve let her use these without me hovering over her too much. This time, I’m looking to more actively engage her as she goes through the websites and lessons. TLE seems to like worksheets so I’ve got some coloring and other sheets from FirstSchool and Confessions of a Homeschooler’s Letter of the Week curriculum.
To tie things together, we’re doing themes directed by what I know she likes and what’s coming up seasonally. Right now it’s “Winter” (nice and generic) and later on, we’ll look at “Animals & Hibernation” to get some science in there while not seguing too far from the previous Winter theme. The idea is to do projects and read books that surround the theme along with the letters/numbers of the week.
There are some days she’s very interested, other days she’s not so I’m not sure how this experiment is going to go in the long term.