We received our Sonlight Curriculum box this morning! We were all so ecstatic when the FedEx man rang our doorbell and we dragged the box into the living room and opened it up and caressed all the new books!
The boys didn't know anything was coming. They aren't that surprised anymore when we get a package - it seems I've been ordering something online every week lately - but when they could tell I was extra excited about this one, they were bouncing all over the place and squealing to have it open. Basically mimicking me, heh.
I spent a lot of the rest of the day feasting on the instructor's guides and setting up my binder. (Today was the day the kids stayed at Grammy's.)
I ordered the preschool 4/5 curriculum, which has read-alouds that cover language arts, history, science, and social studies, at least as much as a preschool curriculum can. It also comes with some workbooks that show their strengths and weaknesses in perception and stuff - very fun looking.
I also ordered a pre-kindergarten level handwriting readiness program that is so much fun: Handwriting Without Tears. They do handwriting up through elementary school, but I just got the preschool stuff. It uses all their senses to help them absorb the fundamentals of writing in general and capital letters. There are hands-on wooden curves and lines that we build fun stuff with, and then start building letters with. There is a song CD with all kinds of fun stuff on it, like left-right, letters start at the top, and so on. There is a mini chalk slate that you do a Wet-Dry-Try practice on to start drawing the letters.
I also ordered the language arts program for kindergarten. This is supposed to be ordered with their little kindergarten reader books that the kids start to read on their own as soon as they learn just a few letters. But those had bad reviews, so elsewhere I ordered the Bob Books that do the same thing (those arrived today too!). But the language arts stuff is what I'll use to teach them the letters and their sounds, and all kinds of other fun stuff about words and how we use them.
I know it might seem crazy that I am already thinking of starting them on that stuff - I thought so too until just recently. But these boys have been showing some mad readiness to start dabbling with reading the last few weeks! I can't answer enough questions about "What is that word, Mommy?" as they read through their books on their own. They "read" the words with their fingers, left-to-right, all the time now, and are memorizing and emoting through their favorite books like crazy. When we discuss what we'll do tomorrow or later in the day, there is always a request to read together, without exception.
I waffle because I see these opinions all the time, that preschoolers shouldn't be bothered with learning to read, even if they are capable, because they should only be playing and enjoying their youth. But my boys love this! I can't keep it from them, or not at least try it out.
So I figure we'll test the waters. If playing with the real thing doesn't work out, I'll put it aside and try it again in a few months.
Anyway, I could not be more excited about this curriculum and the months ahead. I have some plans for things I want to do with them for the next few weeks, and we are planning a vacation when Brandon returns home. So I think we'll get started on this in May sometime. Woohoo!!!