1st or K - Help for child who is reading (author reply)


1st or K - Help for child who is reading (author reply)

Unread post by Tuesday »

Rebecca G wrote:I am trying to decide which program to buy for my 5 yo ds who is at this point reading most short vowel words. He is enjoying reading and isn't fluent, but definitely knows his letter sounds and can print them. Should I begin with K level or go to 1st grade due to the LA aspect of the curriculum? Thanks so much for any advice!

Rebecca G
Date Posted: 7/23/2003
Hello Rebecca G,

My Father's World K and 1st Grade are so much more than reading programs. Your child will learn to write, begin their journey towards numeracy, explore God's creation, and love to learn. The questions you should ask yourself are: How are your child's writing skills? Is your child curious about the world they live in? Are they asking questions about what they see around them in their home and in nature? Is the child ready to comprehend multi-part responses? Does the child have at least a 10 minute attention span for activities that require thinking? Is the child ready to perform tasks more challenging than crafts?

MFWK is the beginning of a lifelong adventure. My son asked questions from very early. At 3 he was curious and had the fine motor skills to write well. My son could have started MFWK at 4yo and completed the curriculum over two years. However, I did not know a lot about teaching at that time and waited until the "acceptable" kindergarten age of 5 and began our journey of discovery and love of learning.

My daughter is the exact opposite. Although she is reading both short and long vowel words, her curiosity about the world around her is just emerging. At 6 she is just now ready to grasp the wonder of God's creation analytically as well as through her senses. She can compose questions and think logically about the responses she receives.

Also, her math skills are not very strong. Therefore, we waited and are starting MFWK this year instead of last year. Last year at the age of 5, she would not have grasped even the simplest of math concepts beyond counting because she is not interested. She would break down and cry. She still breaks down and cries, if she feels that it is too "hard". However, she can handle a wider range of concepts before she decides it's too "hard".

MFW1G, if enjoyed to its greatest potential, opens up the world of drawing and journaling to the child. I would not want my child to miss the opportunity of developing this life skill just because at age 5 they were reading 3 letter words. At 5yo my son was reading, but I still went with MFWK because he would not have been ready for the drawing in MFW1G. Besides, MFWK is awesome and not to be missed !

MFWK explores God's creation through crafts. MFW1G will go the next step and explore God's creation with drawings and copywork. The program you select should be based on your child's overall readiness, not just on their reading skills.

I hope this has been helpful.

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Re: K -or- 1st - Help choosing for child who is reading

Unread post by Marie »

Date Posted: 7/24/2003

We generally caution parents against moving a child into K before age 5 and First Grade before age 6. Even children that are very advanced in reading skills are still YOUNG. They need age-appropriate activities.

The kindergarten curriculum works so well for 5 year olds. They love to explore God's amazing world. They make a sun dial, collect rocks, watch a caterpillar grow and become a butterfly, and learn that God made even the dinosaurs. The length of the program (90 minutes or less) is ideal for this age group.

First grade is a bit more structured and has a bit more pencil and paper work. It is designed for 6 year olds.

If you child doesn't need the phonics/reading portion of kindergarten you might modify the activities. (Use the handwriting sheets for practice; use the word lists to see if he can spell the words himself without looking at the paper; etc.) You will find that you can skip most of the reading portion. (You might also just save the reading worksheets for a younger child to use later.)

I think you would find that using the themes and daily hands-on science/art/Bible activity will give you a gentle, rewarding time with your young child. You can easily expand on each lesson by gathering a supply of library books on each topic (sun, moon, etc.) and sharing the books together. The Bible concepts in each unit speak to the heart of the child -- and moms!

If you (or other moms with similar questions) want to call us, we are glad to help advise on the phone. 573-426-4600
Rebecca G
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Joined: Tue Oct 24, 2006 11:24 pm

Re: K -or- 1st - Help choosing for child who is reading

Unread post by Rebecca G »

Date Posted: 7/24/2003

Thank you Marie,

That answers my question perfectly, and after discussing it with my husband last night, we decided to order the K program. We are looking forward to it...and it will give us more time to enjoy the MFW1 program next year! I appreciate all advice given!

Rebecca G
Posts: 1
Joined: Sat Apr 29, 2006 9:03 pm

Already reading Bob books

Unread post by Kelly »

Jennifer H wrote:Hello, I have a 4.5yo who knows most of her letter sounds. She can read the first 3 bob books. I am using ECC with my 8&7yo and LOVE it!! I really want to start my daughter on something too.... she begs to have her "own" school. Sooo, please direct me in the right place for her. If I did do the 1st grade, I can see my self going very slowly through it. Or, I guess if I did the K I would go quickly?? LOL Any advice would be great!! Jennifer

Date Posted: 12/8/2003

I'd say do K. It's a really fun program and a great way to start school. If she can read Bob books, she's ahead of the game, but you can still do the K phonics activities for fun or you can replace them with another phonics curriculum. K has some great projects you just wouldn't want to miss and the Bible lessons stick with the kids. Oh, it also has some great math activities and handwriting sheets. Save first grade for later. That's my vote.

Julie - Staff
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Re: Already reading Bob books

Unread post by Julie - Staff »

Author: Cathy
Date Posted: 12/17/2003

I would say stick with doing K first. My dd will be 5 in about 2 weeks, but I started her the first week in August with MFWK because she was so eager to do 'school.' She also is advanced for her age and knew she would be bored in a preschool program, so that is when we started looking at K curriculums. The one thing about MFWK is even though it is fairly easy for her, it is helping her build up her skills as well as giving her confidence and actually wanting to do more! I also thought about MFW1, but I thought that was 2 grades ahead and I didn't want her to struggle and get frustrated and then dislike school. One step at a time.

Blessings, Cathy
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Joined: Wed May 19, 2004 9:38 pm

Re: Already reading Bob books

Unread post by david »

Date Posted: 12/9/2003

Hi--David here this time.

As one of the authors of the curriculum and a father of 6 children, one who was very advanced in reading (reading Chronicles of Narnia on her 5th birthday), I would start K now and not rush through it. Do First Grade when she is at first grade age.

Our youngest who was reading an adult Bible at 5 simply was not ready for the abstract learning and 3.5 hour time commitment required for ECC and the 4 history years.

Reading is only one aspect of a child's learning. Often children who are advanced in reading still need more time to develop fine motor (handwriting) and other skills. They also are usually not ready for too many hours of formal teaching and may not be ready to understand abstract concepts. If you push a child along too fast and too soon, at some point in the future it will probably back-fire. The child will lose interest in learning, or will "hit a wall" and not understand why school is suddenly so hard.

Let's focus on the learning adventure and keep the love of learning alive in our kids!
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Reading at 2nd grade level

Unread post by Omma »

carin wrote:I have heard so many wonderful reviews of this curriculum from the Home For Homeschoolers board I had to come and check it out. The curriculum here looks wonderful and really easy to use.

I have an advanced 4-year-old who is reading at a second grade level and doing first grade math. She writes letters to family that are about 5-6 sentences long. She loves hands-on but is not into coloring or cutting and pasting. She loves things like painting, play-doh, clay, and other craft type activities.

I have done so many small theme units with her for the last two years that I really don't want to do K level (plus the phonics would be a waste for us). So I was thinking of ordering the First Grade package - I don't mind some review of phonics but was wondering if the remainder of the program would be a good fit. I know she would have no trouble reading in the Bible reader and I think the math would be a good fit. Does this sound doable?

Thanks so much for any help or advice you can give me.
Posted: Fri Nov 03, 2006 4:37 pm

I really loved the MFW K package, because it has great character development, Bible training and science all interwoven with the theme of the week. Even if your dd's phonics' skills are advanced, does she like to do cut and paste for fun and review? Would she like to use the phonics' pages to help with her writing and learning how to spell words? These are some things to think about!

I think the cost is still worth it (plus some of the profit goes to Bible translation, which is great to be supporting). You could go through the K material as quick as you and your dd wanted, and then proceed on to the 1st grade program.

Have you thought about long-term plans or goals? I'm sure you probably have. I just know that I've been a very eager homeschool mom myself, as my almost 5 dd has already done a Pre-K program and jumped on board with MFW K because we were doing it with an older brother. But I have to think about where we are headed down the road so that we don't have her graduating when she is 15! Unless that is one of your goals?

I still think she would probably love the MFW K! If you needed funds, you could probably sell your other curriculum easily (if you wanted to part with any of it).

I just haven't heard of too many 4 dc starting MFW 1st grade, but whatever you decide to get, you can always adjust the material to match the pace that you and your dd want to go! You can always call and talk to the Hazells about what they suggest, as well.

Just some thoughts to ponder!
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Re: Reading at 2nd grade level

Unread post by kellybell »

Posted: Fri Nov 03, 2006 4:59 pm

I've got to agree with Brenda. K is a great year with all the wonderful units and crafts. Your dd is already beyond where she needs to be on phonics and math, so no need to push her in those areas.

You could try first grade but it gets moving quite rapidly after the first two weeks or so (if my memory serves me right). And, even if she made it through first grade fine, then the next programs (Adventures and ECC) assume a lot more maturity than most five or six year olds have.

I'd honestly consider the MFW K program and just enjoy the year. And, take K and 1st slowly so that she reaches Adventures when she is 7 years old and ready for that amount of work.
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Re: Reading at 2nd grade level

Unread post by carin »

Posted: Fri Nov 03, 2006 6:50 pm

I guess my thought is that if I do K this year then next year the 1st grade program will be too much review in reading and math. The reason I am attracted to MFW is that it incorporates all subjects and makes it really easy to teach. If I have to find a different program for LA and math, then some of that appeal is lost.

I understand that she is way ahead of where she needs to be but I'm not sure that means I should just spend an entire year reviewing - the beauty of homeschooling is that I can teach her at her level and meet her where she is at. I give her the decision of if she wants to do any school each day and if so, what subjects. We spend most of our day just playing and having fun but she has a very strong desire to learn and her comprehension is way above normal for a 4-year-old. She is a very precocious child.

I think by second grade it will even out. Maybe I should use another program until second grade (or use Adventures as a first grader). I'm just wondering what it is about the first grade program that would make someone say it is not appropriate for age 4? Is it the topics discussed? The maturity of content? Or the level of hands-on?

Thanks so much for any help you can give me. I really appreciate everyone's input.

Re: Reading at 2nd grade level

Unread post by cbollin »

Posted: Fri Nov 03, 2006 7:48 pm

"Why not MFW 1st grade with a highly advanced 4 y.o.?" It is not the content, or the involvement of the projects that are the issues. The issue is after first grade you will not really want a 5 y.o trying to do Adventures or any curriculum company's 2nd grade material. Most children that age are not ready for the TIME commitment that is so necessary for a full program that is designed for a 7 or 8 y.o to do.

Which year of life do you think will be better to slow down and consider a less formal approach to academics? When they are 4 or 5 or when they are 7 or 8 and you *have* to school them and keep records and all that?

And in terms of the Bible reader ---- this thought jumped in my mind. I try to read my Bible every day. I think it would be better to have a 5 y.o reading a Bible reader rather than a full Bible with all those hot topics in it (murder, pagan gods, etc.) KWIM? It's ok to wait and repeat material for young children. They like it. It's us moms who don't like to do it over and over again.

If you do go with the 1st grade program while she is still only 4 y.o, you'll have this problem for many years. My advice to you is the same advice given to me about my 6 year old. Slow down --- let her enjoy being 4 y.o. Reward her for learning to read and let her go play while you still can. The formal programs can wait a few more months. She is not going to forget how to read. Teach math concepts in everyday life --- the kitchen is the best place for that. Talk about fractions while cooking. Help her to follow a recipe and all of that.

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Re: Reading at 2nd grade level

Unread post by tkbbrl6 »

Posted: Fri Nov 03, 2006 8:17 pm

This is our first year with MFW and we are loving ECC.

Like you my first two were advanced - in fact in testing so far three of my four fall in the gifted range. At some point we sat down and did the math, realizing that dd would finish hs at 15. Now some people may say, "Oh, that's great. Move on to college." But having been a College Adm I knew that even though she's mature now, I wasn't interested in having my 15/16 yo dd in college classes with freshmen boys aged 18-20! But I had painted us into a corner.

So we've spent the last year and a half slowing down - we even had to put her in a 7th grade math program even though she technically tests into at least pre-alg in every program.

If someone had told me to slow her down when she was 4 or 5, I probably wouldn't have listened - hind sight is 20-20. She is on a gymnastics team and at 10 she's with girls aged 12-13. Even though she could be in their same grade and most consider her very mature, there is a difference in level of maturity. I even realized this with my oldest ds - he turned 18 a few days before he left for college. He's one of the youngest in the group he runs around with and, while I know alot of kids go off to college at 18, there is still a maturity issue.

Some ideas to slow down but still learn that we are using at this stage - and believe me I'm having to re-tell myself to slow down bec my last two are eager to move ahead as well. Anyway, literature for math - there are a lot of books that are math oriented. There are fun early-learner Sci books with lots of ideas for experiments and craft type projects. Just offering a craft basket - holiday basket projects - learning to cook with math - etc. That can con't her learning without doing a formal program and maybe help to hold her off for awhile.
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Re: Reading at 2nd grade level

Unread post by Ariasarias »

Posted: Fri Nov 03, 2006 9:32 pm

I just have to agree -- please, slow her down. Your dd will be okay. I was in your shoes 2 years ago. God has so changed my idea of education. The 3 R's are great, but there is so much more to educating our children. I too have a very early reading, eager-to-learn dd who is now 6.

I understand you want to find a "program." You really don't need one, just continue to go to the library, learn new things, play outside, go for walks. If you are looking for a good book list, the Hazells suggest Honey for a Child's Heart. It not only gives a list of books but also a philosophy of the why of reading. Reading this has helped me recently. My dd loves chapter books, but reading this has encouraged me to go back to picture books that we have missed. Not that I've cut out chapter books, but the picture books are in some ways more age appropriate. She can still read them herself if she wants, but she can relate better. She already has begun to think she is too big for them, but when I sit down with her in my lap and read them, she still can not get enough. This summer, I found her picking up some chapter books that a relative had given to her and I had not looked at yet. She had read them before I had a chance. They were way too mature for her, yet she read every page.

It is so hard, but I am doing all I can to slow her down and let her enjoy being little. I have so appreciated what I have learned here on this board about "age-appropriate." My dd appears "mature" because she is very articulate. She spent her first 3 years of life with college students. As eloquently as she speaks, she is still six. K phonics would have been too easy for her at 4 and definitely last year. Had I known about the program when she was 4 I would have bought it, but God did not let that happen.

We switched from another program in Oct. last year to K and thoroughly enjoyed it. Many of the books were repeats for her, but she saw them through her five-year-old eyes and appreciated them differently. She was able to grasp more of the character development through a five-year-old's eyes. We just didn't do the phonics part. She still knew how to read; we just practiced and I didn't do any other formal reading lessons. God showed me she was five and was fine with the knowledge she had. She's in first this year. The phonics is so review for her. She even said, "I already know how to read mom." But we are approaching it as an intro to spelling.

Are there other ways you can challenge your dd besides academically? I've heard that here before and it has really changed my perspective. What skills could your dd be learning? Besides academically, in what other areas could she be challenged besides academically? How obedient is she? Do you have other children? How well do they get along? Does she help out at home? Does she have a morning routine she can complete by herself? How is she with her "social graces?" Does she have good manners? This year my 6 yo dd is learning to play the violin, learning to clean the house, has to do her whole morning routine by herself, is learning to draw, learning to sew, to cook. Honestly, some of these are so much harder for me to teach her and to come along side of her. They take so much energy and time on my part. I definitely don't give them all justice. She still loves to read and to learn from books, but I am learning there is so much more to education than books.
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Re: Reading at 2nd grade level

Unread post by carin »

Posted: Fri Nov 03, 2006 9:43 pm

OK I think I have been convinced. You are all very persuasive!! The K activities do look like a lot of fun. She will be 4-1/2 in January and I think I will order it then but take it slowly with her. I always use November through December to do crafts and baking and fun holiday stuff anyway. We love to do lapbooks as well so I will add some of those in every few weeks to slow it down and something new.

I really do want to slow her down a bit but it seems once you get the ball rolling it is hard to backtrack. Of course you are all correct that it would be even harder to backtrack once she gets older.

If I take K slow then that would put us at first grade just a month or two before she turned 6 which would be much better.

Thank you all for your advice and honesty, and please post any other ideas or thoughts.
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Re: Reading at 2nd grade level

Unread post by Omma »

Posted: Fri Nov 03, 2006 10:07 pm

Phew! That sounds like a much better plan for a dd who is only 4.25 right now!

I appreciate the education that I received from this thread, as well! I need to role play what good manners and other life skills are all about more, too!

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Teaching K/1st to readers

Unread post by LizCT »

Tricia wrote:I am considering buying the K and 1st curriculums for my daughters who are 18 months apart. (I am thinking about starting them immediately instead of waiting until next school year.) I have read the post about what to do when teaching both K and 1st together.

However, considering both are well ahead of the curriculums in reading, would it be wise to start the 6yo halfway through the 1st grade reading?

This program seems wonderful and I am hoping they can fit in there somewhere. . . Tricia
Posted: Mon Jan 01, 2007 11:15 pm

Hi Tricia -

Welcome to the board & MFW! I suggestion that you 1) call the office to speak with them about placement and 2) start at the beginning of MFW with your 6yo dd.

I started MFW 1st with my then 6 1/2 yo dd and although the beginning part of the phonics was review, it was very helpful to use the early parts to get us both used to the program and to build her confidence. Also, there are some very fun activities in the beginning of the program that it would be a shame to miss with her.

We didn't wait until a "natural" time to start the program - once we knew it was what we wanted, we dropped what else we were doing and dove in - that was last Spring and we have been very blessed by the program and that decision.

Liz in CT
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Why choose K for a child who is already reading

Unread post by Toni@homezcool4us »

Posted: Sun Mar 04, 2007 9:02 am

I personally would hesitate to put my child (who would be a young 5) in first, especially a boy. K would give him so many learning interests to pursue, get him used to a more structured day, and most importantly still let him be the young 5yo boy he is (playing, imagining, creating, climbing, etc.)

I'm sure others who have been in very similar shoes will give better, more targeted advice. I just think there is much to consider when placing a very young child; that his skills and abilities are only part of it.

Re: Why choose K for a child who is already reading

Unread post by cbollin »

Posted: Sun Mar 04, 2007 9:13 am

Pretty much the same thing Toni said. Let your young 5 y.o have a K program. No harm in letting him listen in on older siblings program after working with your K student.

Some ideas for you if you use the phonics/language arts parts MFW K with a child who is already reading quite a bit....

Use what he already knows to help build up skills in writing and other areas.

* use the phonics worksheets for age appropriate handwriting practice
* use the ideas in the MFW K t.m. for tactile activities to improve handwriting.
* some days of the student workbook contain a cut and paste section for sentences. This is good for improving fine motor skills. I'd like to suggest that from time to time you let your K student also write those sentences on separate paper, or at a dry erase board, or with sidewalk chalk outside. Don't get too concerned with spelling at this age, but let them practice writing sentences. MFW K's worksheets provide age appropriate words and sentences for copywork and writing. This will lay a good foundation for next year in first grade when more is expected in composition.

Cyndi (AZ)
Posts: 543
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It was the best decision we could have made!

Unread post by Cyndi (AZ) »

Posted: Tue Aug 21, 2007 11:55 am

Reading just came naturally early on for my dd. She could easily read second and third grade readers at the beginning of MFWK. It comes at different times for every child.

We decided it was best for her to go through phonics anyway, to build an understanding of the basics and improve her handwriting skills.

The wonderful material that we covered in MFWK was so rewarding, it was the best decision we could have made! She learned so much about the world around us, and 26 very important "words to remember" that go with each lesson.

We buzzed through some of the stuff and skipped some things that would have been just too easy, but mostly followed the curriculum. We used the blend ladder extensively, teaching her the difference between syllables and words, and letting her play with different letters to make words. Toward the end of the year, her spelling skills started improving rapidly along with her penmanship. It was amazing to watch. We also added in a math workbook a little earlier than the TM suggests to give us an hour's worth of work to do on school days.

In our experience, it was best to enjoy our year and be thankful that we were learning so much while having so much fun.

Posted: Tue Dec 18, 2007 12:09 pm

I am so hesitant to post this, but I'll try to give you a been there/done that answer. My dd was also very advanced academically at 2 years old. She could read 1st grade readers, count to 20 (or to 60 when she found my tape measure), and do addition at age 3. If I had found MFW, I definitely would have used the preschool program with her. I did get PK and K workbooks and worked with her at the kitchen table when she was in the mood. We read to each other a lot. Some days she wanted to "do school" for hours, and other days - forget sitting still, there's a whole world to explore!!! That is what we should expect from a child that age. And IMHO, that is what we should encourage -- go explore!

MFWK is written for a five year old. (Some would say six or seven year old.) Having a set school time and going through the unit studies requires physical maturation (not necessarily mental) that doesn't happen until 5 years of age. I was ready to order MFW1 for my dd when she was 4.5 because of how well she could read and how badly she wanted to have school, and I am blessed beyond measure that I talked to David Hazell about it and followed his advice with MFWK. There are ways to beef up the programs for an advanced student without pushing them beyond their maturity level. I understand that your dd is brilliant - she truly is. My prayer is that God will lead you in the best way to go for her.
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Kindergarten or first grade?

Unread post by Sahmamma »

mirandagrate wrote:Last year dd and I started MFW kindergarten as a practice run to see if I felt comfortable homeschooling. We didn't finish it all but we loved it. She was four then and now she is five and we are going to be going into the school year full swing this fall. My question is should I redo the kindergarten with her or go into first grade? She reads 3,4 and 5 letter words, knows all the sounds they make, writes neatly for her age.. But I did look at the example pages for first grade and page 79 seemed a bit hard... would it be better to stick with what she knows or to challenge her a little? thanks so much!
It sounds like she is ready for MFW1.

My dd wasn't reading at all after she went to public Kindergarten. That summer I did Hooked on Phonics Kindergarten with her and she was reading short words like hat and cat but that is it when we started MFW1. She is a struggling reader so when we hit a point in the first grade curriculum where it was too difficult for her we took a break and did some review.

Remember you don't have to complete the program in a year! That is something that I had to learn the hard way. If she seems ready for the first grade curriculum I would start it and see how it goes. You can always stop and review for a while if she needs it.

Re: Kindergarten or first grade?

Unread post by cbollin »

She's five, not six. why the rush?

I'd complete the Kindy year.
then, move into 1st later in the year.

Here are ideas to "beef up mfw k" on this thread. scroll down through several people's posting starting here....
http://board.mfwbooks.com/viewtopic.php ... 179#p47744

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Re: Kindergarten or first grade?

Unread post by Mom2theteam »

My oldest is just 5 and will be started (restarting) MFW K in the fall. So, take my thoughts with a grain of salt.

I think there is a big part of being ready for K that is a maturity issue rather than an academic. Does that make sense? Even if academically, she is ready for 1st now, does she have the maturity? And, will she have the maturity to start 2nd grade a year early as well. From what I have read from other BTDT moms, pushing them ahead early on can lead to issues when they get up into 2nd/3rd grade. Suddenly, they are missing the maturity needed to handle the work load and the content. It turns out that they really needed that extra year to mature emotionally.

By reading other BTDT moms who experienced this, I have decided not to push my son ahead early on. My son has an Oct. b-day. He only misses the public school K cut off by 2.5 wks. So, I was thinking I would go ahead with K last year and put him a year ahead. It turns out it was too soon. We did a few weeks and then I put it away. I'm glad I did that. We will start again this fall and he will be right where he should be, both academically and emotionally.

So, what I would probably do is either do MFW 1st over 2 years, to draw it out, or repeat the K. If I repeated the K, I would probably pick some supplements for the reading and possibly even skip the reading program. I would go more in-depth with the unit studies. If I hadn't focus in on the "words to remember," I would really develop that part of the curriculum. If I had, I would expand on it. Another option would be to go ahead and finish whatever MFW K you haven't and then start with 1st after that. Go slow and draw it out for whatever is left for this year and next.

Good luck with your decision. :-)

Postby Mom2theteam » Thu Jun 09, 2011 1:11 pm
I was assuming with my response that you have done the majority of the K program. I am envisioning only 4 or 5 units that you haven't done. I agree that you should finish whatever isn't done before moving on, especially if it is a good portion of the program. I was thinking you only have a few units left and would finish those up very quickly. That was why I was suggesting possibly doing 1st over 2 years if you didn't want to repeat. :)
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Re: Kindergarten or first grade?

Unread post by jasntas »

Agreeing with Crystal. Don't rush. Start K where you left off.
Tammie - Wife to James for 27 years
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Re: Kindergarten or first grade?

Unread post by MelissaM »

As a mom of one who started K as a 4.5 yo...and another who started K as a 5.5 yo...do the Kindy. Definitely. You can challenge her in plenty of other ways that don't necessarily have to come from curriculum at that age.

We just spent a night at a big indoor waterpark/hotel - dh and I, and our 3 kids. They are ages 9.5, 6.5 and 22 mos. The 22 mo has some motor delays - didn't walk till 19 months, in physical therapy. So, I was noticing that while my big kids absolutely loved the thrill and challenge of jumping waves or climbing a million steps and then taking a big loop-de-loop slide down...the baby was thrilled and challenged by just sitting in the shower, lol. I promise, he thought that shower with the bench in it was a ride at the park. He thought the hotel steps were a huge adventure.

That's how it is with 5 yos - it's okay for school to be easy when you're 5. It builds confidence and a strong foundation. Meanwhile, everything else in life can be challenging. She can keep reading beyond the level of what she's learning in phonics. She can concentrate on starting a nature journal and carefully drawing the interesting things she sees during your nature walks. She can memorize poems and scripture, beyond just the "words to remember." (And don't forget to have her memorize her full name, birthday, address, phone number, parents' names/numbers, etc.)

I just think there's so much to be gained from going slowly with the academics in the early years...take your time and enjoy it all. Take lots of field trips. Build forts and lego creations and cook and bake and measure things and learn how to cross-stitch and write letters/draw pictures/make cards for loved ones and shut-ins, and bake cookies for the neighbor and....there are a TON of things you can do to make a rich, full, challenging life for a 5yo that don't come from the 3R's. Remember, Charlotte Mason said "Education is a LIFE."

Posts: 19
Joined: Tue Apr 25, 2006 2:04 pm

Re: Kindergarten or first grade?

Unread post by erikdeb »

Whatever you decide, I highly recommend you say she is in Kindergarten. (Cover up the words "first grade" on the books, and say she's in kindy.)

I messed that one up here when I started my ds young - he actually did fine academically through kindy, 1st, ADV, and most of ECC (we're behind, haven't finished yet) - but emotionally/socially he wasn't ready to be called a first grader at age 5...and so we called this year of ECC "2nd grade" again to get him back. And the lessened pressure I felt when we decided he would be in 2nd grade this year instead of 3rd grade was tremendous! I'm so bummed I thought of him as a 2nd-grader when he was 6. I pushed him too hard in non-school ways (chores, behavior, etc).
Deb, Mom to Isaac-8, Noah-6, Lydia-4, Micah-3, Simon-1
Once through MFW K, 1st, and ADV
2010-2011, MFW K and ECC
Posts: 1
Joined: Thu Jun 09, 2011 10:29 am

Re: Kindergarten or first grade?

Unread post by mirandagrate »

Thank you soo much everyone! All of your input has helped a lot.. I think I will restart the kindergarten with her and just take it slowly.. The reason we stopped it last year was because we had just had a baby and he wasn't sleeping as long as he had inthebeginning and my other son (2.5 years then) was in destructive mode ALL THE TIME... I think we'll be doing our school work in the evenings this fall when daddy is home to occupy the boys... Thanks so much everyone!!
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