I've been thinking about Alex's school plans for the fall, and how to balance my desire to do lots of structured learning activities with his need and desire for lots of play. I want to go at a pace we are both comfortable with, especially since we will also be participating in a formal co-op this year. After much prayer and reading about different methods, I definitely want to provide our children with a classical education. I like the philosophy of Charlotte Mason as well, and would love to incorporate some of her methods into our curriculum here and there. I think for this year we will mainly focus on the 4 R's (religion, reading, writing and arithmetic). I have tossed around the idea of loosely following the Mother of Divine Grace kindergarten syllabus, but I may just use the recommended books and not the daily lesson plans.
We will continue with our little co-op that we have been with for the last year. We thought about making it a more formal once-a-week thing, but everyone's schedule is too busy, so we will get together when we can. Alex will also be participating in a Catholic co-op on Tuesdays for kids ages 4-12 that uses a memory work program called Classically Catholic Memory. Memory work is done in Religion, Latin, History, Science, Math, Timeline, Geography and Poetry. They also do public speaking a few times a year, and have art class the first semester and music class the second semester.
I think we will do school in the morning three days a week. We will continue to do things from our Little Saints program, and I am going to start "Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons" for our reading program. I have a preschool religion workbook called "Image of God" and we will read Bible stories, books about saints, and celebrate feast days. And I found a virtue study program called "Virtues in Practice" that we can use in conjunction with our study of the saints. I don't want to buy a formal handwriting program so I guess we will just practice tracing with printable worksheets. And for math we will start with simple addition and subtraction since he can identify numbers and count to 100 (sometimes). Not sure I want a formal curriculum for math at this point, and there are several resources online.
That should be plenty for a 4 year old. I am sure there will be a lot of trial and error to figure out what works for us, but these are my initial thoughts. I think my biggest concern is trying to keep Mary and Lucy busy while I work with Alex. Pray for us!