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What Your First Grader Needs to Know: Fundamentals of a Good First-Grade Education (Core Knowledge Series) Paperback – February 9, 1998
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A little about my family, since that might help others in a similar position:
My first grader attends a very good public school. While I think her school is doing an excellent job with the core basics, I find it lacking in areas of history (especially world), the arts, music, and exposure to classic literature. I've considered homeschooling, but I love my career. Because I work full time, I don't have time to create my own curriculum or guidelines for educational standards. I'm interested in the Classical education model, as well as the Charlotte Mason model and Waldorf models, to a lesser degree.
This book gives a clear plan for exposing your child to subject that matter that is generally missing from or under-represented in modern classrooms. I find I tend to bite off a little more than I can chew, and definitely more than my daughter can. I appreciated the breakdown of when to teach what.
The sections are short and sweet, with a lot of room for expansion. This could possibly be used for a homeschooler, but would need supplementation. I love it for us because it guides me through what I should be teaching and still leaves it open-ended enough that I can expand and flesh out our learning sessions.
My daughter has responded very well to the content. She is engaged while we read and is able to understand what I'm saying and demonstrate that she is grasping the material. Just ordered our book for next year too and I'm really excited to dive into that one and see if the series holds up.
As a new home school family I use this for a basis to create units and spelling words. I also assign my daughter passages to read out loud to me while I am making lunch or putting away laundry.
This book is not just a list of topics that children need to learn each year. Included are classic stories and fables; history, geography, and social studies lessons; easy to understand math lessons; as well as visual arts and music. Much is left out when teachers must spend time on remedial studies and teaching to tests. This book helps provide enrichment for families that public school. It also serves as a great planning guide and works as an addition to home school curriculum.
I will recommend this to my home-school and public-school friends alike.