Language Lessons for Little Ones {4K Curriculum}

5/29/2011
Eliana and I have been using Language Lessons for Little Ones (Volume 1) for preschool (4K). We are about 8 weeks into the curriculum, so I thought I would share how LL is working for us! 

Language Lessons for Little Ones is "an informal introduction to language arts with a Charlotte Mason flavor for preschool students." 

The lessons, designed to inspire a love of learning while learning important skills for a 3-5 year old, are gentle and focus on:
  • picture study and narration
  • observing and thinking skills
  • poetry appreciation
  • creative expression
  • copy-work
  • identifying the letters of the alphabet
  • vocabulary
  • story appreciation
Our first lesson was a Picture Study and Narration of a painting called "Blackberry Picking." 


I asked Elli to study the painting and answer a few questions about what she sees. I love how the questions attempt to relate the picture to the child's real life experiences. For example, "Have you ever gone berry picking? What kind of berries did you pick?" We talked about when we picked chokecherries and the strawberries she has picked from our garden. 

In lesson 2, the child is asked more about what the child knows and what she thinks.  "What are they going to do next?" Elli answered that they were going to "go home and make blackberry pie." 

In lessons 11-13, I read a poem called, "Fuzzy Wuzzy, Creepy Crawly," and asked narration questions about the poem.


I write her response right in the book. Sometimes when I ask her a question, she asks to draw a picture. When I asked if she had ever seen a caterpillar's cocoon, she wanted to draw a cocoon.

And she drew a picture of a caterpillar and a butterfly for lesson 13. . .  


 and asked to read The Very Hungry Caterpillar

Then we had a review of the letters she has learned (Aa and Bb) and learned a new letter (Cc). I pulled out our quilted rag letters for her to use because she does not like to write yet. 


I have her trace the letter with her finger and then write one letter per line. 



Malachi is learning to alphabetize in All About Spelling Level 1, so I did an impromptu alphabetizing activity with Eliana with  letters a-g. . . she did great! 


The lessons are designed to be done once a day, but it is very easy to do several in one sitting. Last week, we completed lessons 22-25 in two days and our lessons focused on fireflies. 


Eliana has never seen a firefly (nor have I!), so after we looked at some photographs of fireflies, she drew this picture:


and wrote a short story about a firefly that went like this:

Silly Fireflies

A silly firefly flies up to the sky and it says, "Silly, nilly, willy, billy." 

I would have loved for her to catch one! Instead, I was inspired by a handprint firefly craft to do an art project.

Handprint Firefly (Lightening Bug)

{We used sponges for the body and glow-in-the-dark acrylic paint
and handprint stamping for the wings.}
I later added a verse to the top: "Unto the upright there arises light in the darkness. . ." Psalm 112:4

In my researching, I discovered that a lightening bug, or firefly, is neither a bug or a fly, but rather a beetle. Interesting creatures.

Since she has never seen one, this activity was to help reinforce that a firefly lights up (hence the glow-in-the-dark paint). After holding it to the light for one minute, it glows in the dark.

So, Eliana and I are wondering. . . do you call it a firefly or a lightening bug and does this vary by location?

One day this week, lesson 34 asked, "Have you ever helped with baking in the kitchen? [yes] If so, what did you bake? [cookies] Who helped you? [Dylan] Tell about how you did it. [put ingredients in a bowl - stir it up] Then she drew a picture of a food she would like to bake - and eat. [She drew a picture of her and I baking and a plateful of cookies - strawberry cookies.]

So for Homemaking, we decided to make strawberry jam prints with a yummy whipped butter cookie recipe.



Melt in your mouth goodness:


{Whipped Strawberry Thumbprint Butter Cookies}

1 cup butter, softened
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour 
1/2 cup confectioners' sugar
Whip until soft and fluffy {about 10 minutes}
Drop by the spoonful onto baking sheet
Make thumbprint and fill with strawberry jam
Baked at 350 for 15 minutes


This has just been a little peek into how Language Lessons for Little Ones works for us! 

14 comments:

Michelle said...

We use these, too!!!  I can't even remember how many years now, but they have been a keeper.  I forgot to add them on my list of what we use, but thankfully, I remembered to schedule them daily...hehe!

Michelle said...

Yummm-my!! my mouth is liteally watering looking at your bikkies!! sorry cookies ;-)
I so love your quilted letters and wish my machine was working to attempt them!
and for the record, i've always called them fireflies...or very occasionally glowbugs.

Mamagot5, Australia

Michelle said...

thank you so much for this review!! i am interested in these books but wanted to hear some real life reviews! :)

Michelle said...

Your welcome! Let me know if there is a specific volume you would like
to see more of and I will do my best! (I use this with all my school
age kids). =)

Michelle said...

Looks great!  And those cookies truly look melt-in-your-mouth...yum!  Here in Tennessee, we call them lightning bugs and they are out right now.  Think we'll have to stay up and catch some soon!

Michelle said...

Another helpful post... Thank you!
Do you feel like these lessons are easy to do, even with a new baby in the house? I've considered ordering this book, and I'm wondering if it would be helpful for me to give Mike some focused 1:1 time after the baby arrives (around his 4th birthday) without being too much on me.

Michelle said...

Yes! Indeed. I write the stories they make up, but the lesson just
says to tell a story. You could do most of the lessons orally, and
while snuggling on the couch with that new baby. =)

Michelle said...

We call them lightening bugs, we are waiting for them to come out again at night. We like to catch them and put them into a jar and watch them blink. A fun summer memory. I thought they were all over the US, I didn't know not everybody had them. We used that book, but I think I picked a level too easy for my daughter and we quit part way through (she already knew her letters). I love the picture studies though, so we just did most of those and read over the poems. I love how you use a date stamp, that is so clever.  You always seem so organized.

Michelle said...

Great site. I would like to add you to one I just started if you approve
   I have put together a daily blog intended to be used as an additional study tool for you and your child. History, math, science, vocabulary, and geography are given every day many with a link to the document to study. I also have researched sources that I hope may be helpful to you as an aide for your child. The site is actually very child friendly in terms of use.
   I ask you to visit it and see what it has to offer. The first post “The Furniture of the Human Mind” will explain the site and hopefully you will look around.
                                                        Thank You
                                                        http://www.dailyhistory365.blogspot.com

Michelle said...

Thanks for the review - I have this book and plan to start using it this fall.  BTW - we're in Western PA and call them lightening bugs. : )  They are fun to catch - lots of memories catching them as a child and with my children.

Michelle said...

Found your blog through Timberdoodle Facebook.  We use L.L. for all three of our boys ages 10, 7 and 5.  Loved the last picture and those quilted letters.  So nice!

Michelle said...

Bikkie ~ is that slang for biscuit? =) Thank you! I've never heard of
glowbugs, but that is cute!

Michelle said...

Oh, how fun! We were sent a bug catcher that is a lantern ~ I bet that
it is for lightening bugs! What a fun summer memory that is. I wonder
if it gets too cold for them up North (we are in Wyoming). We don't
have a lot of bugs compared to the South.

We move through the lessons fairly quickly, doing several a day. I
skipped the first book for my 6 yo because he knew his letters. The
2nd book seems a better fit for him.

The date stamp came from my Project Life kit and is a help to this
mother. It give me joy to stamp that page, he he. and that is my
attempt to record keep. I'm really not THAT organized! I'm working on
improving in this area ~ a friend helped me make a weekly schedule/
planning sheet and I am actually using it! :D

Michelle said...

Sounds wonderful! I can imagine the joy they bring to little ones.
What a fun memory!

And your welcome!

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