As my school year is coming to a close for 2021-2022, I wanted to share the curriculum that I’ve used for my kids. Homeschooling 5 kids isn’t always easy, but staying organized and knowing which books and programs each child will need is the best way to stay on track. Here is what worked well for us this year for 1st grade for my youngest child.
First grade curriculum this year was made up mostly of things I had already purchased! My youngest son is my last opportunity to use a lot of the goodies I’ve acquired over the years, so I am starting to find myself falling back on some oldies and goodies that I had used with my older kids.
Math – For math, we used the old version of The Good and the Beautiful Math 1. Before they updated their curriculum, they had a big sale on their boxed sets, so I purchased K and 1.
Ethan enjoyed K last year, so it felt right to move on to Math 1 this year. Each of my kids have used something different up until the point that they’re ready for Teaching Textbooks, so it was fun doing all of the hands-on lessons of TGTB with Ethan this year to try something different than his siblings had done.
Language Arts – I wanted to make sure that Ethan had a really strong year of reading instruction, so we used The Ordinary Parent’s Guide to Teaching Reading (affiliate link), by Jessie Wise and Sara Buffington. I actually used this to teach my oldest child to read, so it felt sweet to use it again for my last child.
I *love* this book for so many reasons. The best part, for me, is that it is a very inexpensive and to-the-point way to give explicit reading instruction. No frills, no distracting graphics or anything, just this book, a dry erase board and marker, a few index cards and/or Post-its, and a pen. That’s all we used for this all year.
Ethan is reading at a very high level compared to the beginning of the year, and it’s been a joy to see him finally transfer that knowledge and use it doing his favorite hobby, playing video games. Now he knows what people are saying or what the game instructions say. He’s also been able to transfer that information into typing responses, as well. It’s been a huge year of growth.
For handwriting and grammar, we have used First Language Lessons for the Well-Trained Mind (affiliate link), by Jessie Wise. As with the reading book, FLL has a very straightforward approach to teaching. Ethan practiced his penmanship with copywork, learned about different parts of speech, and worked on memorizing and reciting poems all year long. It was really cool to see how many he could remember!
Social Studies, Science, and More – We did not use a formal curriculum for other subjects this year. Ethan did watch several educational videos and shows. He also learned how to read well enough to read several non-fiction children’s books this year to himself to learn about animals, mostly.
We have also been part of a small, younger kid focused co-op this school year. He’s learned a lot from those activities, including about weather, water, science experiments using candies, yoga, dealing with emotions, helping others, learning about nature, and more. He also likes to listen to stories before bedtime to wind down at the end of the day.
Homeschool Year in Review – 1st Grade
I was very satisfied with my youngest homeschooling child spending most of his time on math and language arts as his main areas of focused learning this year. He is a competent reader with an ever-expanding vocabulary. He is curious and ambitious. I’m so proud of the accomplishments he has made, and I know he will be ready to move on to a full load of math, language arts, social studies, and science next year!