Saturday, August 21, 2010

MFW Adventures, Week 1

I must say that one week in, and I'm absolutely in love with the My Father's World curriculum. My Father's World follows Charlotte Mason's philosophy of education and teaching methods. For a mama who has always wanted to do more than just workbooks and inspire my kids to love learning and reading, but also not being overly creative on my own, this curriculum is does what I couldn't do on my own.

We are doing the second grade core this year, called Adventures in My Father's World. Through the course of our year, we will be studying the history of the United States and learning about each of the 50 states. Next year, we will get a good dose of geography and culture with Exploring Countries and Cultures, to be followed in 4th grade with Creation to the Greeks. Each year after that, we will be studying another section of history. What I love about MFW is that I can incorporate all the children into the core without having to teach separate history lessons to each one.

So these are pictures of our first week of school. Carli was not at all excited about starting school until the night before, but halfway through our first day, she said, "I'm excited now! I can't wait till tomorrow so we can do more!"

Here's Olivia on the first morning of school. (Funny...the girls laid out darling little sundresses to wear and we woke up to a chilly house. Someone had accidentally bumped the AC down way too far, AND it was in the 60s outside! Most beautiful weather this week. So they found sweaters to keep them warm for a while. They wanted to wear their robes, but I didn't think that would be fun for first day pics!)

Carli ready to start

Oh, and she wanted to show off the rock she painted.

All three littles.

Day one called for a red-white-and-blue snack. We had Icee treats.

One of Carli's favorite activities was the timeline. Since I didn't have wall space to make the line on the wall, I accordion-pleated cardstock. I was going to buy a book, but I talked to a MFW rep and they suggested that we do a more simple timeline this year, one that could be stretched out so she could see a full line at once...something about how young ones see time at this stage of development. So we'll start our big timeline books in two years with Creation to the Greeks.

Carli adds Leif Ericsson to the timeline. We also had a brief geography overview of the United States, as well as the continents and oceans. (My camera was dead for a couple days and I didn't get that photographed).

I bought Draw Write Now book 1 for art this year, and we worked on it twice this week. (This is day one). This will be a favorite activity of ours this year. Carli, Olivia, and I all worked on this. I am NOT an artist, so we started simple with this book. Carli enjoys art, but Olivia LOVES to draw/paint/color/marker and does a good enough job that I think she has a more creative bent than Carli or me. I'd like to get them into art lessons next year. Carli was constantly complaining that hers didn't look as good as the book, and saying things like, "I'm just horrible at this!" If anyone has great ideas about making art lest scary, encouraging us both to try and practice and be happy with our best efforts, let me know! :)

Carli working on her aBeka math and phonics workbooks

In Bible this year, we are learning about the names of Christ. This week we talked about name meanings and how our names were specially chosen.
  • I wrote her a letter to tell her about her name.
  • Carli did some copywork on special paper.
  • We incorporated Chrysanthemum to remind us that our names are special.
  • We did a simple notebooking/lapbook hybrid page
  • We made name necklaces to remind us that our names are special.

On highlight of the week would have to be Science. MFW includes the Usborne First Encyclopedia of Science, and we enjoyed the bright and colorful pictures, the internet links(!), and the simple science experiment. We used a notebooking page from to document our experiment.

On Friday, our whole family traveled about an hour and a half away for our first field trip and nature walk. We visited one of Gene Stratton Porter's home and Rainbow Bottom. More on that coming soon.

Another part of our school day that did not get documented photographically is our Book Basket. We really enjoy any chance to read and we definitely have plenty of chances to read between our read-aloud (Strawberry Girl by Lois Lenski, sometimes read during school and sometimes before bed since it's not part of the curriculum), book basket time, and "reader" time for Carli. (We've been using Sonlight's reader list mixed with ones we choose) The Book Basket is used with MFW to provide read-aloud or independent reading related to our history, science, or Bible topics. This week, we read Chrysanthemum, the Usborne Vikings book, and have started Paddle-to-the-Sea (we're practicing our narration skills with this book, and Carli is really enjoying that process!).
Coming soon: "Not-back-to-school blog hop: A day in the life" and "Limberlost"


Shore Girl said...

Enjoyed reading about your 1st week of 2cd grade! (Enjoyed all the pics too!) Looks like it was a successful week - learning wise. We'll be joining you soon!!

Monica said...

Hi Love reading your MFW Adventures. I'm going to post our week-by-week too.
Thanks for sharing. Good idea using notebooking pages for the science. We just started using them for the nature walk. I'll post about it soon. We start week 3 this week. Keep me posted on your updates!

beaglemamma said...

Hi! I just found your blog on the MFW Blogroll. I'm doing Adventures this year, as well, with my 7-yr-old (and my 4-yr-old tagging along as she chooses). Looks like you had a great first week! I look forward to keeping up with your blog and going through this Adventures year together!

Lainie said...

So glad you found the blogroll and MFW :) I pray you have a blessed, Jesus-filled year!

Your children are beautiful...

LRmom said...

We are also using MFW for the 3rd year and loving it! Enjoy this year, as we are.