June 17, 2024

Curriculum Planning: 2nd Grade – Wait Til Your Father Gets Home

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We’re continuing today with curriculum we used during my son’s second grade year of the 2020-2021 school year. Much of his curriculum is similar to my daughter’s first grade selections, however he’s definitely taken a noticeable step ahead of her this year (as should be expected if you ask me since he’s a solid year-plus older). He has taken on a bit more in the realm of Language Arts compared to his first grade year.

Phonics: We use Explode the Code for phonics practice, and during his 2nd grade year he completed Books 4, 4.5, and nearly half of Book 5. Most days, he independently completes two pages. Rarely he’ll need a little help from me (many times just trying to figure out what a picture is trying to represent). He’s been doing Explode the Code workbooks long enough that he understands each type of lesson pretty well.

Core Language Arts & Literature: This year, we used The Good and the Beautiful Language Arts & Literature Level 1. This beautiful and academically strong course covers phonics, reading, spelling, grammar, punctuation, literature, art appreciation, writing, and geography. With beautiful literature, magnificent art, and the connected learning, this open-and-go course book guides parents and children through learning in an enjoyable, engaging way. He enjoyed many of the art lessons that were integrated throughout the course this year compared to last year’s Level K book. My little guy absolutely soared from the beginning to the end of the year. There are a few assessments and reading lists that are timed sprinkled throughout the course itself and his times just got better and better (and sometimes simply unbelievable) as the year went on. To witness his fluency and comprehension just skyrocket this year was such a gift as his mom. I’m so very proud of the reader he’s now become!

Readers and other books used: He enjoyed the Level 1 reader that came with the course. Each story increased in both difficulty and length as the course progressed. He also dove into a world of books this year. Some of his favorite titles to grab off our shelf included Elephant and Piggie, Clifford, Hey Jack!, Henry Heckelbeck, Dr. Seuss books, McGuffey’s Readers, Usborne Beginning Non-fiction Readers, and Narwhal and Jelly. The fact that he now goes to bed with a headlamp and a book to read for a little while is one of my favorite things that has come from this year. He’s definitely now following in his big brother’s footsteps and enjoying reading more and more everyday.

Writing: This kid would literally “make a book” every single day if I let him. For his birthday he’s asked for blank books with a hardcover so he can publish his own stories. Almost daily I can find him folding paper in half and stapling it together to make his latest book creation. What’s the most remarkable thing about it?! You should see his handwriting in these books. He CARES and he wants them to look beautiful. His little left-handed penmanship in these books is the absolute best (and cutest). It does drive me nuts sometimes that he has a ton of half finished homemade books laying around the house, but I know I will treasure them forever.

Easy Grammar: I introduced my second grader to some additional grammar practice this year using Easy Grammar Grade 1. It was the perfect introduction for him, and typically he’d cover one page a day during the weeks. Essentially it covered 5 topics each day with one practice problem for each. Topics included capitalization, punctuation, sentence structure, and a new skill such as nouns, verbs, adjectives, or adverbs. I am glad I waited until he had a stronger reading ability to begin this program and plan to use it again in the coming years.

Teaching Textbooks 4.0: We are a Teaching Textbooks family, and my 2nd grader used Math 3 alongside my 1st grader this year. Yes, they are both younger than 3rd grade, but they were fully ready for what Math 3 had to offer. They are my two little math whizzes and enjoyed the challenge so much this year. My second grader especially loved the bonus rounds that are intermixed every few lessons. For fun he loves to run into my husbands office and yell out “DAD! Bonus Round!” They both come running back and complete the round together. My son shouts out the answer and my husband types it in for him. It’s a nice way for my husband to see what our little guy knows too.

As I mentioned before, be on the lookout for my complete review of Teaching Textbooks 4.0. I’ve been using their curriculum for almost 4 years now, and I’m here to say it’s truly a game changer in the world of homeschool math curriculums.

Humble Math Workbooks: Along with his siblings, my second grader completes a page each day from these basic facts books while I’m reading during morning time. It’s quick and it’s the perfect amount of daily practice he needs to maintain those basic skills.

As my middle guy approaches his third grade year (wow!!), I have plans to add a bit more to his individual workload. I’m looking forward to sharing upcoming changes and additions in the coming weeks.

For more curriculum reviews and ideas, see the following posts below:

Curriculum Planning: Morning Time
Curriculum Planning: First Grade
Curriculum Planning: Second Grade
Curriculum Planning: Fourth Grade

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