- Are you new? The knee-hugger grades aren’t as fleshed out in math and language arts as most newbie parents expect. If you have never taught this grade before, be sure to see my newbie notes HERE.
- Construct a realistic schedule. In the Writing Manual and Language Arts Overview, sold by the school, there are instructions for building a child’s read-alone time stamina. I highly recommend it. Also, it mentions in the online syllabus that he should still be having family read aloud time in the evenings. The Manual explains how all of that happened in the Berquist home. Get it. Also, the history supplemental reading isn’t included in the “minutes per day” schedule in the syllabus.
- Bundle the memory work resources. Try to do it in one sitting. Print out my Master Memory Book. You’ll need Catechism and K-3 poetry.
- Copy/tear out your worksheets. Music Worksheets, Math, Maps, all that.
- Order your blank books. If this is your first year with it, see the bottom of THIS post to figure out how many books you need and what sizes.
- Go ahead and cut out your art cards. I have an attractive, cheap way to store them HERE.
- Check out my PLL color pictures. Those assignments are way better easier if it’s in color.
- If you want an example fiction schedule for this year PRINT MINE.
- Write in your Mom Notebook: “USING YOUR OWN WORDS” for retellings and “USING COMPLETE SENTENCES” (Subject, verb, end punctuation). That’s the Language Arts focus this year. It might seem silly at first, but if your kids are great memorizers like mine, you’ll hear the author’s actual words in the retellings. Also, mine tend to use incomplete sentence phrases to tack on details in retellings. It’s something experienced authors might do, but that’s not where we are. See the following WRONG example. “On the right side of the picture was a cave. Round, quite dark.”
- Make decisions about handwriting. The plans assume you are DONE with this subject. None of my kids were that way. Sometimes we did poetry stanzas, sometimes I did the “This daily assignment is your handwriting too, make it pretty,” sometimes we just added a workbook. That’s the one that works best for us. It’s quick and dirty and DONE. Also, WRTR has it’s own handwriting section that is woven into the phonogram review every year, if you use the scripts in Chapter 1.
- Look over the history books and pacing in the assignments. THIS IS THE BIG HASSLE OF THE YEAR. The first half of the year is harder than the second. Check out History Read Aloud Times 3GRD.
- Print my cards for the dates, mountains, and rivers.
- Book mark these memory hooks for mountains and rivers.
- Book mark these memory rhymes for the dates.
- Check out these cards for states and capitals. We love them.
- Check out my coloring pages for Music Masters here.
- Review your classical music resources and beef up the music schedule. This year, “closely attending” to beautiful music is extended with guessing games. Instead of attending to a single piece of music, the child is encouraged to listen to similarities across the composer’s work. You spend two weeks per composer and will need to work in experiences with his music outside of the bi-monthly Music Master assignments. These won’t be sufficient.
- Print the poems out again. If you did the memory book printing above, you already have them once. Print them out again and paste them in the notebook. That way, he can just put in the drawings as he finishes them.
- Read about the word “lower.”. “The Children’s Hour” is much less annoying if you pronounce that word correctly. Low-er like shower and power. Night and storm clouds lower (as in threaten). See the first stanza of this poem for another example.
- Gather the “get ahead” supplies on my science supply lists.
- Get ready for WRTR. Print my “mini-lessons” pdf (or the teaching cards version) so you have a script anytime you need to “teach this rule” or provide more practice (or learn it yourself). If you want to pace out your year and know the word lists ahead of time, get my pacing guide here.