Wrapping Up Our Kindergarten Curriculum – Adding in All of the Miscellany

The big subjects are all out of the way. If you have missed any, feel free to click on the links below and review my previous entries:

Foreign Language

I wrestled with whether or not to teach a foreign language for about ten minutes. I thought about how bad I am, how completely incompetent I feel at speaking Spanish or even French, which I studied for over three years in high school.

It was actually that feeling of incompetence that made up my mind. Emily will learn Spanish this year. Between the next door neighbors to our south, native Hondurans, who of course speak it fluently and a website that will help me teach myself along with Emily the basics, I hope to attain some measure of fluency right along with her.

Here is what Home Learning Year By Year suggests for foreign language goals for Kindergarten:

  1. Simple words and phrases
  2. Greetings and the names of the numbers from one to ten
  3. The names of colors and other everyday expressions

I’ve already begun by counting from 1 to 10 in Spanish. Thursdays will be Foreign Language day. But who knows? I may choose to study one aspect of it each day. So…counting one day, colors the next, and so on. And then of course, we have the next door neighbors to help reinforce these lessons.

I also decided to purchase The Everything Kids’ Learning Spanish Book: Exercises and puzzles to help you learn Espanol (Everything Kids Series) as an added help in learning Spanish this year and going forward.

Art

Home Learning Year by Year suggests the following Music goals for Kindergarten:

  1. Be able to name and describe colors, shapes, and lines and to identify these in works of art (also texture and pattern)
  2. Observe and discuss famous works of art by a variety of artists from a range of historical periods
  3. Experiment with a range of art techniques and media (drawing, painting, simple sculpture – fiber arts, collages, printmaking, mosaics, pottery and mobiles)

I went back to my now tried and true website resource, Amazon.com, to see what it suggested and it listed Art for the Very Young: Ages 3-6 and the description sounded like just what I was looking for…

Young children have the ability to create, view, interpret, and appreciate art. Art for the Very Young offers over 50 art activities for children to create art and learn about basic art concepts and techniques, such as line, shape, color, space,texture, form, and value. Watch how your young learners acquire an appreciation and understanding of the featured artists and techniques they use!

How perfect is that? Since my local library didnt have it [gasp!], I ordered a used copy for just $5.05 plus shipping. So far, this brings my expenditures for Emily’s schooling to about $25 for the year.

Music

  1. Be familiar with such basic elements of music as rhythm, melody and harmony
  2. Listen and respond to a range of different musical selections, both classical and multicultural
  3. Recognize instruments by sight and sound

Hopefully, UMKC will have another Kids Music Club this year. The last performance especially was nice for #3 on the list. During the last event, there was an ‘instrument petting zoo’ before the final performance. The kids were allowed to touch and often play different instruments and learn their names.

I’ve gotten in the habit of picking up music CDs at the library on a regular basis. So far it’s been an eclectic mix – but I would like to find one that Danielle had when she was little Beethoven Lives Upstairs which was a lovely tape. And joy of joys, I found it listed on the library database! I’ve requested it.


Health and Physical Education

  1. Know the importance of exercise, cleanliness, good nutrition and sleep
  2. Participate in age-appropriate athletic activities

There is a great series I found that is a companion to Sid the Science Kid on tv. We found their Stage One books – “Everybody, Move Your Feet!” and “Why Can’t I Eat Cake for Dinner?” The books are for kids ages 3-6 and there are more in the series. I would suggest doing a search for all of the titles. Between some basic nutrition and cleanliness books we will also incorporate Yoga Kids dvds on at least a twice per week basis.

Emily sort of introduced another possible tradition – when practicing her letters she first insists on stretching. Which might be a lovely way to start school each day and then checking the calendar for what we need to do for the day (I just bought a lovely Melissa & Doug magnetic calendar the other day).

And after all of this planning and requesting of books I have to give a big shout out to the Mid-Continent Public Library – without them, homeschooling Emily would be an expensive foray into the unknown. Between the vast numbers of books that over 22 branches have put at each patron’s disposal and the amazing programs they host (and no, I’m not just talking about the ones I offer!) – the library has become a home away from home. I love the ease in ordering, the helpfulness of every library staffer I meet and know personally, and the selection of books is out of this world! Kansas City is lucky to have Mid-Continent Public Library…damned lucky…and so am I.

This entry was posted in Homeschool - Choosing A Curriculum Series, Homeschool - Fine (and not so fine) Arts, Homeschool - Foreign Language, Homeschool - Music, Homeschool - Physical Education. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Wrapping Up Our Kindergarten Curriculum – Adding in All of the Miscellany

  1. Patrick Deering says:

    an idea for next year’s curriculum could include Sign Language as a “foreign language”. There is a site (www.signingsavvy.com) which provides a video dictionary for sign language and a phrase builder which lets you see a string of videos tied together to make up sentences. It also includes all of the finger signing. There are a lot of homeschoolers who use the site and share word lists, and activities include video quizzes, print flash cards, etc. I think a lot of the site is available for free, but full access does cost money (or you can talk to your public library about picking it up – Recorded Books sells subscriptions to libraries to provide the full site to their patrons for free)

  2. Sarah says:

    One book that I really liked for my son was “Preschool Art: It’s the Process Not the Product.” This book gives great ideas for exploring different art techniques and leaves most of everything else up to the child’s imagination. I like that open-ended approach. 🙂