This year was a difficult year to plan. Jasmine is in an awkward stage of learning where some of her skills are extremely advanced, whereas others are right on target. Mostly, her reading level is extremely high, but her maturity level (just turned 6) and writing skills won’t allow her to effectively complete some curricula we plan on using. This discrepancy led us to research a different history program for this year.
We originally planned on using the Veritas Press history series. However, this program does not usually begin until 2nd grade. VP’s history is pretty writing intensive, and while she could handle the reading and project aspect, we did not feel that she was truly ready to complete this program without frustration on both of our parts. Couple this fact with the idea that history is done in conjugation with an equally rigorous Bible program, and I was in desperate need for a fun substitute without giving up our classical approach. Enter Layers of Learning!! This program looks AMAZING, and I cannot wait to begin using it this week!!
Layers of Learning (LL) uses the classical method of a four-year history cycle. So far, Year 1 and Year 2 are complete, with plans for Year 3 units to be released this summer. My favorite part of Layers of Learning is that is combines history, geography, art, and science. I have science already planned for the year, but the LL science aspect looks stunning, so I plan on adding a few projects to introduce topics we have not covered yet. I also like the art ideas. Art is an area I struggle with. We all love art, but it usually ends up left out. I am hoping that won’t be the case this year because LL ties art in along with our other subjects.
I put together a three-ring binder for Jasmine to keep all of her LL work. The binder is divided into 3 sections – one each for history, geography, and science. Art will be displayed on our art wall, and then photographed for our portfolio. This year, I am going to try more notebooking in our school (I will post more on this later). I recently purchased a subscription to notebookingpages.com, and I was able to find notebooking pages for several of the topics we will discuss. I printed these pages and placed them in her folder for easy access. This week, we will be starting with Year 1, Unit 1. This unit focuses on first civilizations, maps, globes, planets, and cave paintings. I will post our favorite highlights at the end of the unit:) If you want to try Unit 1 for free, just head over to their website and sign up for their newsletter!