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Sunday, August 25, 2013

Our school room & timeline description

Don't get too excited to see this.. it's not that great!  Our school room was our preschool room last year, but preschool for one required a lot less space than school for three does!  We have a family room in our basement that we've used as a play room, reading room, laundry sorting room, and my sewing and craft room.  It's now got an additional function... and feels very crowded!  But we're lucky to have a dedicated room.  Plus, it has wood paneling!  (Please note, my sarcasm font isn't working)

As we first walk into the room, the calendar area hangs on the left.  Last year during preschool, I taught my daughter the days of the week according to Eric Carle and The Very Hungry Caterpillar.  She still sorts the days of the week out in her head as "strawberry day" or "orange day".  We do a calendar each day during her math time, so we are still using this area.

Further along that side of the wall is our cubby area and our world map.  Costco had a few different sets of maps this summer for $15.  We couldn't pass that up!  The kids each have a cubby and my books are in the orange file box laying on its side.  On top of the Expedit cubbies are a few more manipulatives and some spelling hands-on items.   Ignore the corner back there.. it's my sewing supplies and "to sew" pile...something I think will grow larger and larger now that my days are filled with school.  :)

Here's our work area.  My mom is a K teacher and her school was getting new tables and chairs a few years back.  I was able to pick these up and we've put them to good use!  This year we raised one for the older two to work at.   Ideally I'd have Ikea tables like my sewing table (with the shorter table tops) as desks, but free works much better!
IMG_5705 web

Forward and to the right there you can see our USA map.  The cupboards hold a little bit of my fabric as well as some other craft and sewing items.  Some of our manipulatives and toddler activities are on the top, with our books and a file box holding construction paper.
USA map

The right side of the above window is our book corner, with just 3 of our bookshelves.  There's more in other rooms of the house.  I have a dream of a house with an open area on the upper floor lined with bookshelves.  There would be a beanbag and a recliner, and a lamp in the corner.  A nice quiet spot away from the living area downstairs and the bedrooms down the hall.  But for now, this works.

To the right of the books is our whiteboard.  We also hung our "Tree of Learning", part of the Latter Day Learning foundations lessons.  There's also more busy activities on top of the white bookshelf.. no we don't leave leftovers there!  The kids got a free meal from the summer reading program and the takeout containers were perfect for storing some of my homemade games.

The last part of our room is our timeline wall.  We had to rearrange to fit this in here, and I am glad we were able to make it fit!  This is part of our Latter Day Learning Family School curriculum.  The kids were so excited to help put it up and it already came into good use.  We were reading the scriptures one morning, in the Doctrine and Covenants where Christ talks about the Constitution.  The kids wondered if the men who wrote it were baptized.  So we looked at the timeline and determined that they wrote it before the church was restored.  That brought about a discussion about having the influence of the Holy Ghost and having the gift of the Holy Ghost.

We added the ribbon to create an actual line, since I had a lot of that ribbon taking up space.


I read through a lot of the information about timelines at the Family School site, and I read through Savvy Homeschooling as well.  I still wasn't catching on though.  So I'm going to try to explain a little more here.  Though keep in mind we're only on day 4 of this curriculum, so I still may be doing something wrong!

Our curriculum came with a packet of printed labels for the timeline.  They were on letter size paper.  While I love the idea of a huge timeline on the wall, that just wasn't going to fit in our room!  Saavy Homeschooling offers her labels to download, they are two vertical on a letter size page.   That is what you see on this wall.

Also included in the curriculum is a list of the Key Link pictures.  The digital version on the Family School website has links to suggested images.  We went with most of their suggestions, changing up just a few things.  We felt for the Early Church and Apostasy a fitting image was Moroni praying as he prepares to bury the plates.  For the Enlightenment and Secularization of America we chose the image of the signing of the Declaration of Independence.  I chose to print each picture on a 5x7 photo paper (please ignore the horrible coloring.. my printer has major issues lately) then trim the white space off the image for a cleaner looking display.

timeline description

The Art Timeline is another download from Savvy Homeschooling.  I don't know where it ties into the curriculum yet, but I like the idea of having it up there.  Her files have these two to a letter size paper but I printed them as 2 pages per sheet, ending up with four labels per letter size paper.  I printed them on cardstock and now I wish I had printed the timeline labels on cardstock as well.

So, in Foundations lesson 2 the timeline is introduced and the children help assemble and hang it.  That was a lot of fun!  My kids were so proud that they got it in order and had to show it to Dad as soon as he got home.  The entire timeline is hung even though it will take us 6 years of Family School to get through it.  Like I mentioned though, it has already been handy to have, and we've only done Foundations lessons!.

The last part is the Timeline Flashcard.  These are additional flash cards that are separate from the subject (history, music, science, etc.) flash cards that correspond with the Family School curriculum.  They are available to download for free, or you can purchase them at their cost of printing.  I opted to purchase because of the previously mentioned printer issues and because time is in short supply.  Plus, they are very well made.  I did notice that these are the "old colors", so they don't match the subject colors for History and Music.  Throughout the lessons there will be instructions to hang timeline flashcards under the corresponding time period.   Hopefully we'll have enough room through the years.  Our first timeline flashcards to hang will come later this week when we begin Music.  Also, if the entire timeline wasn't hung now, we'd have nowhere to hang that card yet!

Whew.   One day soon I'll list what curriculum we've chosen.

See our updated timeline for year 2 here!

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