Sunday, July 29, 2007

First Day Plan

The big day is almost here - not the biggest day - but a big day nonetheless. First grade begins tomorrow! My intention was to keep up review all summer but since that didn't happen, we are starting slowly. Hopefully this will more easily get us back in the swing of things. The biggest day will happen in a few weeks when we phase all subjects in and are rolling at full-speed.

Really, this is as much for me as for Thatcher. I have been a night-owl all summer (for the first time in my life) and it's going to take awhile for me to adjust back to my early-bird schedule - in bed at 9:00 and up at 5:00.

Here is our plan for the first day - and the entire week, as well:
  • Rules:
    • Read Buzby the Misbehaving Bee by Max Lucado and discuss why it's important to have rules: Rules keep us safe and make sure everyone is having fun.
Rules are a way of saying, "I love you." - God speaking to Buzby
    • Introduce our family rules. Read them, talk about each one and look up scripture references in the Bible.
    • Start memorizing rules. Goal for this week is for him to recite all 10 rules from memory by Friday. This should be greatly helped by the mnemonic - GOLDEN RULE.
    • Review rules as we start school each day this week.
    • Watch the Buzby DVD a few times throughout the week as a reward!
  • Math:
    • Review skip counting by 2's, 3's, 5's and 10's
    • Introduce skip counting by 9's. Goal for this week is to be able to skip count by 9's to 99.
    • Addition flash cards each day.
    • Subtraction flash cards each day.
    • Review days of the week, months of the year and seasons, too.
  • Reading:
    • I pulled 20 books from our home library for Thatcher to read aloud to me - a few a day. I chose books well below his reading level for two reasons: first, although he has been reading all summer, we have not had read aloud time since the end of May. I want him to experience success in these first weeks so he will be confident when we ease back into books on his level. Second, this is not one of his favorite things to do. He gets frustrated because he can read silently so much faster. As a result, he tries to fly (aka. mumble) through his oral reading. We are going to slow down and really work on these skills. I am trying to teach him that reading aloud is something completely different from silent reading because you need to be mindful of an audience. To him, it's just painful to slow down! It's not a "can't" but rather a "choose not to."
  • Bible:
    • Start reading Wisdom and the Millers. It's not a bible study in the truest sense of the word but it will be perfect to go along with our focus on family rules this week. We will look up the scripture reference from the book of Proverbs each day as well.
    • Finish memorizing books of the Old Testament. This has been a project he has undertaken this summer; he only has the last seven books to go until he is done.
  • Read-a-loud:
    • Begin The Silver Chair by CS Lewis at bedtime tonight.
  • Other/motor skills:
    • Coloring - Thatcher dislikes coloring...with a passion. He still scribbles (I am not exaggerating!) and uses only one color per page. It's a combination of his ADHD - not willing to take his time - mixed with the fact he has delayed motor skills. It's not easy for him, so he just doesn't want to try. While I don't expect him to create a masterpiece, I do want him to learn this skill - color one direction and in the lines. We will color a simple picture printed off the internet each day. I have a collection and he will be able to choose whichever he wishes.
    • Cutting - Similarly, cutting is not easy for Thatch. On top of his normal difficulties, he is a lefty. He has yet to come up with a consistent grip on scissors that will allow him to cut straight. When tries to cut anything it ends up looking like the jagged side of a saw. Each day we will cut out the picture he colored since they have simple lines as well as practice cutting straight and curvy lines that I draw on paper. A fun idea I read on a website years ago was to draw lines with a fun sticker at the end. The sticker is the little prize for a job well done! :)
    • Tying his shoes: sad to say that I have never taken the time to teach him this skill. He rarely wears tennis shoes (revisit the ADHD thing yet again - it's fast to slip on flip flops so why would anyone want to wear anything else!) and the few times I have made a feeble attempt, it didn't go over well. He is now six and it is time! I don't want him to be at his soccer game asking his coach to tie his shoes when he is 10.
  • Thing to make the day special:
    • Start the day by reading Green Eggs and Ham by Dr. Seuss and then actually eating a breakfast inspired by the book!
    • Give the boys their Schultuete filled with school supplies and goodies right as we begin school.
      • Both of the above are ideas moms shared on the WTM message boards. My plan is to make these first day traditions from here on out!
    • These are the boys cones for tomorrow! They are filled with all their school supplies, a tiny bit of candy and new underwear (Transformers and Cars!), which they needed anyway!
    • At the end of our first day I will surprise him with IG-88, a Star War's droid he has wanted forever. I refused to pay $12 for it in the past, but I found it on clearance yesterday. He will be thrilled!
    • Tomorrow night we'll go out for ice cream at any place of his choice. I will be pulling for Marble Slab but he will most likely want McDonald's. Lol! This one serves a double-duty as dh leaves Tuesday morning for Canada - a week of camping and shenanigans with his college buddies! It will be a fun memory before Daddy leaves because we don't go out for ice cream very often.
Ok, I am off to bed. This is why I love blogging - it gives me a place to "think out-loud!"

1 comment:

Anna said...

What a great idea! I may do something like this!