Scope and Sequence - MFW-K

God's Creation From A to Z: A Complete Kindergarten Curriculum
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Scope and Sequence - MFW-K

Unread post by cbollin » Wed Aug 15, 2007 1:35 pm

Social Studies in K

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.

    1. History:
    *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.

    3. Geography?
    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.

    4. Economics:
    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.


Scope and Sequence - Kindergarten

Unread post by cbollin » Thu Oct 30, 2008 11:24 pm

The MFW K program, My Father’s World from A to Z, consists of 166 daily lessons. It is arranged in unit study format to cover all subjects needed in Kindy age programs. Great for retention of material and for the higher thinking skills with the analogies that are taught.

Language Arts skills are covered --- Hands-on and workbook activities are combined to teach letter names, 26 letter sounds (consonants and short vowels), sound blending, and correct handwriting. Students learn to read short vowel words; and by the end of the year, they are reading very simple stories. Children also get a lot of handwriting skills through both multi sensory and workbook approach. Children should begin to be able to copy 4-6 word sentences at the same length as the readers in the program.

One example of that level is this story, which is about lesson 19 of the program.

All typical K level math is covered using hands on learning. Skills taught include counting objects, writing numerals, preparing and understanding charts and graphs, comparing, classifying, sequencing, and understanding ordinal numbers, fractions (whole/half), clocks, money, and an introduction to addition and subtraction.

A broad base of science & character lessons are covered. Here are the themes

When you are studying the letter S, for example, you will learn about the Sun and learn that Jesus is the light of the world.

Or from the online samples, when you study the Letter I, you will learn about Insects, and about being wise.

[editor's note: Social Studies is outlined above ]

Tell me about the Structure of MFW K on a daily Basis

The first 10 lesson days are a unit study on the days of Creation, as well as a time to help gently ease into school time routines. Those lessons are not shown on the website sample. In each of the 10 days,
You will have a time to read scripture to your child (from Genesis 1 and 2 and a few other verses in Psalms)
You will have some time to make a creation collage and notebook pages. Very flexible – I’d guess that they will look different from child to child – even in the same family.
You will have an intro time to numbers
You will have a time to introduce names of the letters of the alphabet (might be review for many students) through some simple games that are included
You will sing some songs together.
All of that is spelled out in the manual of what to do. Easy to follow

Then, after you complete those 10 lesson days, you have 26 unit studies, one for each alphabet letter. Each of those low prep unit studies has 6 days of material. They use routines to go through each unit so that Day 1 of Letter S will have the same routines as Day 1 of Letter M. Day 2 of Letter S will have the same routines as Day 2 of the other letters. There will be variations as you progress through the program that recognize that you are learning more letter sounds and beginning blending and reading. So it is not the exact same each and every time, but similar in approach and adjusted for the amount of material learned to that point. You need to do the program in order because the phonics letter and sounds are taught in a way to help learn how to read.

There are 3 basic sections of the manual to help guide you through the unit study approach

1. Math, The 100 Chart and monthly calendar
2. phonics/language arts,
3. Science/character/Bible-- The day's special hands-on activity as described in the Activity Guide. These focus on science, math, Bible, art, children's literature, and creative thinking. I linked above to the topic list for those themes.

Although I call them alphabet based unit studies, it helps to keep in mind that it could just as easily be called Godly Character based unit studies that are related to the alphabet. But, it’s just easier to talk about the S letter instead of saying “The Sun/ Jesus is the light of the world lesson.”

Let’s break it down into How does a Typical Day in MFW K look?

On Days 1-5 of each of the alphabet based unit studies you will have 3 “big things” to cover:
1. math --- using a very hands on approach. I’ll get back to this in a moment
2. phonics/basic language arts section (i.e. the Yellow Pages of the manual)
3. Science/Character/Bible section.

So, when you are on Day 1 of Unit Number 11, (which is the letter I, or the Insect unit, or I am a Wise Child, so I work hard unit)

You will do the math routine, which is listed in the manual, but not on the online samples. That’s a Calendar and 100 chart. The 100 chart and straws in a cup method is very simple, yet very effective method for teaching an important part of math – place value. Calendar --- teaches patterns, as well as calendar skills.

Then you will do the Day 1 routines in Phonics (i.e. the yellow pages) Those are the worksheets that make up the Student Workbook

Then you will do Day 1 activities from the Insect pages. Very hands on.

Then on Day 2, you do math routine, day 2 of the “yellow pages”, then day 2 of the science activities.

On day 6 of the Unit, it is a bit different:
1. math stays the same
2. There are no “yellow pages”, but many of us use the items from the deluxe package --- Alphabet book and Intro to Classical Music – in lieu of phonics worksheets.
3. Day 6 of the science pages, which is called Literature Day.

Literature Day happens at the end of the unit to give children time to review, absorb and get ready to move on to next unit. You can use the library lists (keep the cost down). If your library doesn’t carry these titles, you can substitute any quality children’s story that you want. In the ideal setting, you get a title that relates to what you are learning. In the real world, any quality book will do. There are activities and questions for the books that MFW recommends. They will be a springboard for you if you have to use a different book. It is perfectly fine to read books any day of the unit. Each unit gets a special day to focus on literature selections.

Here's a list of those titles and some info on them (you only need 1 book not all of the books listed)

Because the manual is arranged around the routines, it helps to have 3 paperclips to speed up the process of going to the next routine. Very simple.

Let’s take a look at the online sample, day by day

I’ve mentioned how the program routine is set up. But what are the samples showing us about the day?

As it says at the top of the sample page, the instructions for each day are in detail in the manual. The instructions are nice and clear to follow. It will tell you when to use the hands on learning and when to use the Flashcards, and the Lauri letters. And it tells you when to turn to the student workbook.

The math routine is not listed online, so I’m not going to say much on it. It’s spelled out in the manual. Simple, hands on, very effective.

On the sample page

Let’s just run through the I insect unit...
Where it says Activity --- that refers to the Science/Bible/Character section of the unit study. You will want to present facts on this 1st day. It doesn’t have to be much. They don’t have to learn everything from an encyclopedia article and it doesn’t have to be an encyclopedia – just a children’s fact book. I use the library to keep costs down. And I love getting simple children’s books for those facts. My librarians have been so helpful at telling me the dewey numbers for the topic. I get about 3 or 4 lessons worth at a time. I don’t feel chained to the library in order to do MFW. I feel blessed to have lower costs.

I usually do the Activities after doing the math/phonics. But it can be done in a different order :)

From the section of
Intro Letter Sound to Day 2 section --- all of that is the Yellow Pages that I’ve talked about. Just pretend there is some kind of ***** between Activity and that part to help you see that.

There is usually 1 (sometimes 2) workbook pages on each day. All of the instructions for those phonics things are in the manual, but not printed online.

Take a look at
Look at the bottom right hand corner. It says Picture Cards, Lesson 11, day 1. That means that you’ll find the instructions for this page by looking at the Yellow Pages, on the day 1 routines under the Picture Cards instructions. It spells it all out what to do. And usually by this point in the program, you don't need to refer back to the instructions as much.

You get lots of fine motor work as well as phonics with these worksheets. A common concern is about the fact that they are black and white. I didn’t mind that in the worksheets because it helped my child to focus. We had lots of other things in our day that will colorful. So – one worksheet isn’t that bad to be black and white. And we found ways to add in bits and pieces of color --- stickers, Lauri letters, colorful ink markers like you'd use to make a colorful dot.

Here are the samples of the Students workbook. They show the routine of 1 or 2 worksheets per day of the unit study. Each lesson will increase a tiny bit with difficulty of words and how many are on a page. These are snapshots of the program as it has progressed through unit number 11. < - - special note…. This is a math worksheet page, instructions for it are still in the yellow pages just like the rest of the worksheet instructions. So – this is one extra way that math gets included in the program beyond just the calendar and 100 chart. And , there are even more math activities as lesson progress in the unit studies --- there are tucked in the Science/Activity sections. < -- instructions are given in the manual. And several alternatives are there. This is mostly a time for handwriting and/or copying short vowel words. Students can draw the word, or put stickers or not deal with it in the top part of the box.

And < -- this is a sample of the included readers in the program.

You can look at each day of the sample unit (I insect) to get a good feel for the variety of activities and lessons in the Science/Bible/Character section. That’s what is called Activity. There are also basic comprehension questions for the literature selections included.

I’m wondering about now if you feel a bit overwhelmed from reading all of that and linking around. I hope that it helps to navigate a bit of how the samples are showing the program. MFW K is a delightful and rich program.

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