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Upon completing the month of Ramadan and winding down after the Eid holiday we are ready to start our third year of homeschooling with the newest addition to our family, Safiya.
We’re really excited about this year as it is our third year of homeschooling. Looking back on our journey it was difficult to begin with, as most people will tell you in starting out homeschooling, the first year is always the most difficult. You don’t know where to start, or when to start, or how to start. With some patience, persistence, prayer, careful review and reflection we were able to accomplish a lot. Save “100 Easy Lessons, most of our program was ad lib, teaching math, science, reading, Arabic, and Quran with a DIY/cut and paste methodology.
Our second year was much smoother, as we became more confident in ourselves and more flexible with our program. We also came across some educational materials that we had long been searching for to help us in our program, adding Singapore Math, Real Science 4 Kids, Khalasat Al Qaedat Al Baghdadiyah, as well as Stories of the Prophets, by Hasan aNadawi.
As for this year, we feel that things are in order and we are happy with what we are doing. For most of our subjects we have either a curriculum, or a book that we are following, or a program that we have created. With little need to spend hours trying to cut and paste lessons together we can now focus on setting some goals and achieving them. Our objectives have become clearer for what we see as reasonable accomplishments for the year. Some things we have added for the first time, while other things we had previously put on the back burner and so we will be placing more emphasis on them.
The following is a list of the books, or curriculums that we will be using, some of which we hope to complete this year.
Our youngest son Nuh (3) will be starting a much more consistent program.
Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy lessons
Dolche sight words
Al Qaeedat al Baghdadiya
Stories of the Prophets by Hassan Anadawi
We have a series of introductory biology lessons we put together for pre-k covering basic concepts.
learning to count up to 100 writing out the numbers.
Singapore math earlybird book A.
Juz ‘Ama: memorizing through listening and repeating
For reading we tried to pick up a varying selection of books for him to read and we’ve added to his library the following.
1. The Little House series by Laura Ingalls wilder (5 books)
2. Mrs. Frisby and The Rats of Nimh by Robert C. Obrien
3. My Side Of The Mountain by Jean George
4. The Mostly True Adventures of Homer P. Figg by Rodman Philbrick
5. Carry On, Mr. Bowditch by Jean Lee Latham
6. Charlotte’s web by E.B White
7. Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry by Mildred Taylor
8. The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett
9. Anne of Green Gables by L. Montgomery
10. Anne of Avonlea by L. Montgomery
11. MacMillan First Dictionary by Christopher G. Morris
We will work a lot more on his spelling this year and give him varying writing assignments from shopping lists to letters and everything in between.
we have a few different handwriting books we’ve picked up for this.
Around the World in 180 Days (article coming soon)
Most Beautiful Natural Wonders by Rebo International
We will be trying to put together a program insháallah.
Addition and subtraction flash cards & mental arithmetic.
Transitioning from memorizing through listening and repeating to memorizing by reading
There are some areas that we will be giving extra attention to this year.
1. Physical Education: Living in a city and the desert can make getting outdoors and buring off some energy a bit tough. I’ve been thinking a lot that these boys need to get some exercise so we’re going to start having a little phys ed. Class in our apartment. To add to this I started taking Abdurahman to swim at a local sports club and we will be going on a weekly basis. We also we have a long walkway nearby that is about a mile long where we take the boys with their bikes once a week.
2. Visual Arts: Previously we did not place much emphasis on art, not due to lack of desire, in fact we have enough art materials for a young budding artist, from water colors, to pastels, to acrylics, drawing paper, coloring books etc. but we just lacked the discipline and curriculum to set up a practical and suitable program. This year we are working on putting together a series of lessons to help get our boys creative sides working.
3. Islam: Up until now our Islamic curriculum has been quite indirect. This is not to say that they have had a complete absence of Islam, quite the contrary. They pray with me in the masjid, Abdurahman is reading Stories of the Prophets, and they both listen to the Seerah for their bedtime story, which all have been a great primer for beginning to study Islam. My goal is to get them to traditional books as soon as possible, but in the beginning of this year I hope to complete with Abdurahman a curriculum for Aqeedah and Fiqh that I’ve been working on, which will be used as a stepping stone to working with actual Islamic texts, as opposed to using ordinary Islamic curriculums based on grade levels. The goal really is to get him to the heart of things as quick as possible.
4. Cooking: we will be trying to cook with them on a weekly basis.
5. Transitioning from guided learning to independent learning
To help keep us organized we’re going to keep a monthly schedule up on the wall to help map out where we are going for the year, as well as a weekly chart so that we can check off what we have done so we can make sure we are on top of things.
We pray that Allah grants us all a happy, successful year in our homeschooling adventures.