Friday, September 10, 2010

1st Grade Starts With Fair Day

September 2002
Peep1- First Grade
Peep2 - 4 years old
Peep3 - 3 years old

We started out our year with the fantastic Western Washington State Fair. This is the 7th largest in the country! It is big and we got to go free on the first Friday of the fair each year. Since this was such a "big" deal in our area, we decided to host our own "Fair Day". Several homeschool families came to our house to "show" their animals (stuffed), show off their baking skills ( I got to judge all the entries...yummy), and their latest creations (lego, forts, etc.). We set up a ticket booth at the front door, where my kiddos got to learn about money (fake of course). We awarded each participant with Blue Ribbons for a variety of things! It was a total blast! The kids all loved it too! It was such a great way for them to try public speaking when showing their animals. And boosting self-confidence by showing off their hard work and so much more!

We loved My Father's World Kindergarten so much that we decided to follow with their First Grade curriculum. I loved it because the student got his own Bible to color and learn to read. I'm a huge believer in studying creation and the Bible as much as possible while they are young. It is the foundation to everything else they will learn later on! L&A got to do preschool along with MFW and went to co-op classes with their brother.

We plodded along pretty well. However, writing became a huge frustration quickly. If I had know then, what I know now, I would have put every writing assignment away (except for practicing the ABCs) quickly! This skill was so difficult (not that MFW asked for much) that Peep1 would sit at the table, white knuckled, the whole time. Tears for him. Total frustration for me as well. This continued into 2nd grade. So I took the lessons away and we spent more time on the couch reading great books. I gave him a writing journal and as we read he was to write words if he wanted to or draw pictures that related to the story. It was just for him to get used to a pencil in his hand w/o any pressure. It helped our relationship greatly! I love those precious times snuggled on the couch! I had forgotten until I read Salt Box: Tactile Penmanship Practice that we worked on tactile learning with salt and sand as well.

Reading three letter words was going pretty well. But by second grade his progress went very slowly. Looking back I remember all the worry and frustration I had over his progress. And now I see so early on the signs of what we would later learn was dyslexia!

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