In MFW K, many subjects are integrated into the science and character lessons and you might be surprised as just how much is in there.
When I started to homeschool, I use to drive myself batty trying to make sure I did everything. Then, if that wasn't enough, I tried to blend in the standards of learning from my state's dept of education. I stopped trying to make my own plans and went with a boxed curriculum so that I didn't have to do all of that planning. It helped in one way. It helped me to see subjects and an idea of age appropriate stuff. Eventually I stopped checking those books out of the library.
Just trying to assure you that MFW K program (and the other years) are complete in the subjects. And that for things like social studies, what you don't get in the box, you're probably getting in real life, or even church settings.
About 2 years at a local co-op meeting I gave this as a mini-presentation to new moms. It was just called, How do I teach Social Studies to my K and 1st grader. I hope it will help you even if it is not specific to the application in MFW K.
It is my hope to help you not feel panicky, but rather to be relaxed that you are probably already doing more than you realize on this journey.
(warning.... long list follows.....)
- Remember: you are not trying to teach 9th grade Social Studies to a 5 year old.
- A lot of social studies at the K level will happen naturally for homeschoolers without having to get a new boxed curriculum, or an extra workbook or anything like that.
- In our state, dept of ed has 5 Strands of things they call Social Studies at this age. History, Civics, Geography, Economics and something called Society/Culture.
*look through photo albums and talk about how the child has changed
*look through photo albums at grandma’s house and look at how you have changed
*Ask grandma and grandpa to “tell me a story from when you were a little girl (or boy)”
*Enjoy your family’s traditions at major holiday and try to visit those cousins.
All of that is history. Still not sure? Here’s Social Studies, Grade K, listed for History. (Sounds just like a visit to grandma’s house at Christmas in my family.)
Compare people, objects, and events of today and long ago.
Identify celebrations and holidays as a way of remembering and honoring events and people in the past.
Listen to and retell stories about people in the past who showed honesty, courage, and responsibility.
Identify and order events that take place in a sequence.
2. Civics and Government?
How can that be covered in K? Make sure your child can follow your rules and the rules of other teachers in their lives at church. Ask them to name some teachers in their lives. Ask them who is a helper at your church (pastor, custodian, the person who opens the door, etc).
Again, here it is in “teacher-speak”
CIVICS and Government:
Identify and describe the roles and responsibilities of school personnel.
Give examples of rules in the classroom and school and provide reasons for the specific rules.
Identify symbols and traditions associated with being citizens of Indiana and the United States.
Identify examples of responsible citizenship in the school setting and in stories about the past and present.
Identify and follow school rules to ensure order and safety.
When you go on a field trip, let your child look a map of where you are going in your city, or state. Talk about the trip and point out the Road signs as you travel. Why wait until a fancy field trip? Just point out the name of their street the next time you’re outside or going to the grocery store.
Pay attention to the weather and talk about. A nature journal or walk can be fun to do at this age.
Make sure you and your family clean up after themselves in a park.
Here’s the teacher’s speak version:
- Use words related to location, direction, and distance, including here/there, over/under, left/right, and up/down.
- Identify maps and globes as ways of representing Earth and identify map symbols for land and water.
- Describe people and places in the school and community.
- Give examples of seasonal weather changes and describe how seasonal changes affect people and the environment.
- Describe simple differences and similarities between ways people live in cities and on farms.
- Recommend ways that people can help keep their environment clean.
Take your children with you on errands and point out things like people’s jobs and that all of these jobs are important. Say hi to the people in the grocery store that you see each week. Let your child hand over some of the money at the cash register (or let them help you swipe the credit card)
The teacher-ese version:
Explain that people work to earn money to buy the things they want.
Identify different kinds of jobs that people do.
Explain why people in a community have different jobs.
Give examples of work activities that people do at home.
5. Individuals, Society and Culture:
As you read through the teacher speak on this, you’ll probably realize, this is just everyday life. In our town we are blessed to have many international restaurants and groceries. Take the time to visit them and buy something and talk about it. Perhaps you can host an international student from the University. I’m not talking about paying for their room and board all year. I just mean --- host a student for a holiday meal or something like that. Many of them have to stay here in town over break and they are lonely. Get to know someone. You can talk to the student housing people to find out how to do that. Or ask some of the ladies who are here and on staff with Campus Crusade, and IVCF, and Navigators how to do that.
Here’s that Teacher’s Speak:
Identify ways in which people are alike and different.
Identify individuals who are important in students’ lives — such as parents, grandparents, guardians, and teachers — and give examples of how families cooperate and work together.
Give examples of how families in the community are similar and different, yet are part of the community.
Identify and compare similarities and differences in families in other places and cultures.