You now know our why. This week we’re sharing our what.
People have described me as eccentric, so it may come as no surprise then that our curriculum choices are eclectic. Just like my personality doesn’t fit into a box, I don’t pretend my children do either. Our goal is to empower well rounded girls through experiences and different resources, while building a foundation rooted in the connectedness to nature. So, we don’t have a narrow focus when it comes to education or learning styles.
Our main “curriculum” focus (and I have this in quotations because we’re not rigidly following one) is heavy on learner-focused, or Child-Led. I’m allowing the girls to be involved in what they wish to learn and how long they stay on a given topic. Also, we’re problem-centered where we emphasize the importance of critical thinking and look for problem-solving techniques. But alas, we have a touch of a subject-centered curriculum that is structured around subject material. With all that being said, the heart of our learning path is through our own interests and curiosities.
These are the early childhood educators, philosophies, theories and styles we are drawing our inspiration from:
• Charlotte Mason
• Nature immersion
• Wild & Free
Some would argue these methodologies cannot progress past preschool or early age groups, but I tend to disagree. I think we can extrapolate main concepts and apply them thoughout education, especially throughout the entirety of elementary years.
Here is a current list of materials and tools that we pull from—but keep in mind we try to do the bulk of our learning outdoors— whether that’s our backyard, our driveway, at a park, in the woods, or out at the land (etc)
• Fundations (K & 3rd)
• Handwriting Without Tears (K & 3rd)
• Develop Reading Fluency using Poetry (2nd-4th)
• Really Good stuff Word building
• reading lots of classics together
• Love Poems from God, and other various poets
• Exploring Nature with Children; A year long curriculum
• Handbook of Nature Study
• Carson Dellosa Seasonal STEM challenges
• Nature Journaling
• Wild Math curriculum By Rachael Tidd (K & 3rd)
• Didax Educational Resources Magnetic Fraction Tiles
• Magnetic Ten-Frame Set
• Teaching Student-Centered Mathematics: Developmentally Appropriate Instruction for Grades 3-5
• Wooden 100’s frame from Treasures by Jennifer with multiplication chips
• Wooden clock from Treasure by Jennifer
• The Kids Book of World Religions
• Children’s Book of Philosophy: An Introduction to the World’s Great Thinkers and Their Big Ideas
• Self Regulation & Mindfulness
• Weekly Yoga and meditation sessions 2-3 times a week
• Smithsonian History Year by Year: The History of the World, from the Stone Age to the Digital Age
• Orbitz interactive globe
• Pip & J USA watercolor state cards (Etsy)
• Spectrum 3rd grade geography workbook as an extension
Art and Crafts
• Wild & Free handcrafts: 32 Activities to Build Confidence, Creativity, and Skill
• Discovering Great Artists: Hands-On Art for Children in the Styles of the Great Masters
• tons of hands on crafts and activities
• Virtual art classes as they pop up with Amber Guinn
• Ukulele lessons for McKinley
• Keyboard lessons for Cora
• Gymnastics for both girls
Another big element that isn’t a “curriculum” but is largely apart of our weekly routine are sensory bins, and daily writing in gratitude journals.
Most everything else has been collected over time, or comes from our local libraries. We also are joining the Wild & Free central Ohio chapter for group learning opportunities, as well as many extended experiences around town at The Zoo, Franklin Park Conservatory, COSI (etc)
Here is a look at some previous topics we’ve studied this summer, as well as a peek in our indoor learning space! (Click the links below) I’ll also be sharing more on the resources and materials we use and take on the go in the coming weeks.
Honey Bees, Blossoms, Summer Solstice & Solar, Clouds, Summer Trees, Moths & Fireflies