5K Corner: Weeks 1 & 2

Malachi started Kindergarten 2 weeks ago. I am pretty traditional in following the "school year" (since it is so practical), so I won't record Malachi as a Kindergartner until this fall. But, we are getting a head start! To recap, for Mali's 4K or Preschool Corner, we did a variety of activities including:
  • The Explode the Code Primers (Get Ready, Get Set, Go for the Code)
  • Our Alphabet Fun series where we did activities for each letter of the alphabet. Some of the activities included: a bible memory verse, books, poems, songs, science, hands on math, literature based/themed units, lapbooks and lots of hands on and real life learning. (These are all located on my sidebar under Alphabet Fun).
Since then we have just been reading books, playing, doing some impromptu science and nature studies and real life learning. I still plan to include lots of informal learning as we continue on with "school" but I am hoping to add some more formal lessons. A few resources I am using:
  • I Can Read It, by John Holzmann (corresponds 100% with ETC)
  • Explode the Code (ETC) Book 1
  • Getty-Dubay Italic Book A
  • Language and Thinking for Young Children, by Ruth Beechick
  • The Three R's, by Ruth Beechick
  • Writing Strands 1
  • All About Spelling
  • Ray's New Primary Arithmetic for Young Learners

 I have not decided on what I will do for anything else!

Here is some of what we did our first 2 weeks:

 We have been reviewing the phonogram cards from All About Spelling Level 1. We took the Consonant Pretest in ETC 1. (Mali colored every single picture so this took awhile!) I gave Mali his very first spelling test from I Can Read It Word List lesson 1. He sounded out each word and spelled them on his own. At this point, I have made no attempt to teach him to read! I have only taught him the letter (phonogram) sounds.
I really like the Madsen's method of teaching to read through spelling, and I was pleased with the results! (I need to clarify however, that the Madsen Method does not approach spelling by word families. I am simply using the materials that I know and love and pulling in ideas from their method in the application of these materials). I used a sheet of manuscript paper and taught him the margin lines and spacing. But, Mali has not been given instruciton in correct formation of all the letters. (And I may be getting a little ahead of myself here). So, we worked on correct letter formation by letter family groups in our Italic Handwriting. We focused on shape and stroke and covered Family 1 (i, j, l), Family 5 (a, d, g, q), and Family 6 (b,p). We also reviewed how to hold your pencil, proper paper position and posture (applying principles learned from the Madsen Method). Malachi worked on Lesson 1 in ETC (short a sound) and completed pages 1-3. I purposely had him take the spelling pre test before completing page 3 because I wanted him to sound out the words before seeing them written. Mali also read the first story in the I Can Read It: "Pat, the Rat." He already knew the word "the" (because Luke taught it to him), but I taught him the word "is." I did not teach it as a sight word though. He knows that there are two sounds for the letter "s": /s/ and /z/, so I simply told him that we use the later sound for this word. I am not sure if there is a rule for this, because I have not seen it in MM or AAS yet. The other word I taught him is "a." When he came to the letter "a" he would say, "ă, ā, ah." (smile) After this he was able to read the story. He segmented each phonogram and then put them all together. *Ü* 

We also did a story and narration. I read "The Crow and the Pitcher" from Language and Thinking for Young Children. I had Malachi narrate the story and the moral of the story as I typed. Then I printed a notebooking page for him to illustrate.
We then acted out the story by adding "pebbles" (dominos) to the pitcher. We filled the pitcher with water and marked the water level with a board marker. Then Mali added the "pebbles" and watched the water level raise. He pretended that his fingers were the crow's beak and added "pebbles" until the water level was high enough to reach.
Another day, I read him The Tale of Peter Rabbit, by Beatirx Potter. I had him narrate the story for me, I typed it and then printed it for him to illustrate.
For math, we played Dominos with the goal of getting Mali to recognize the number dots without counting. To do this, I did not have him count the dots. I simply told him what the number was. We also did this with this Bug Race game that I have seen floating around. It was quite funny to watch him because he really wanted "6" to win. He loved this game. So, I was really excited to see that Jenn made one with Race Cars! As you can see in the video, however, Malachi can recognize numbers 1-6 without counting, so I really need a version of this game that uses 2 dice. For science/nature study, we participated in the "Winter Series Salt Study." We attempted to grow our own salt crystals to observe. He titled his experiment "The Salt Evaporating School." For his next delight-directed experiment of his own choosing, Malachi asked for water, cups and food coloring. I gave him a dropper to mix, stir and transfer color. I do plan to do some more formal science with him as soon as I figure out what I want to do. (I originally was going to plan all of my own lessons to share, but I think I really need something planned out for me.) Malachi loves to draw. He spends a great portion of his free time drawing little scenes like the ones below. He brought these to me to and narrated the story line to me.
Can you tell that he likes "war" and "army guys?" I put these two drawings in his K notebook, but I have since started a new notebook just for his drawings. I put them in plastic protective sheets and I will have them comb bound at the end of his 5K year.
Malachi finished up his second swimming lesson session. He is making so much improvement that I decided that he may take one more session before soccer starts. (We will be too busy once soccer starts.) I am hoping that he will be able to swim across the pool by then.

He LOVES to swim!
That is all I can remember. I need to start a new post and write down what we do daily. I am hoping that if I keep track daily, that it will be easier to remember. *Ü* Delightful Links: The Preschool Corner & 5k too!