A Skeleton Plan for Waldorf Homeschooling First and Fourth Grade

Apparently Kara over at Rockin’ Granola and I are on the same wavelength recently…..Several weeks ago I got this urge to make a quick skeleton outline of blocks that I am going to start in the fall with my First and Fourth Grader.  This sounds a little crazy for this time of year, perhaps, but inspiration really struck me and it took very little time.

During the quiet of the Twelve Holy Nights, I urge homeschooling parents to take some of these days and lay out a skeleton plan of the blocks you are going to tackle in the fall.  This way you will be ready to order supplies around March and you will be able to start putting your blocks together.  You will be so proud to have a jump-start on your next school year!

Here is my quickie outline for 2011-2012, subject to change at a moment’s notice.  Smile

(Of course this does not include the middle lesson (s) or the afternoon lessons…just the Main Blocks).

Week of August 29 through September 9 – First Grader Form Drawing and Counting Games (2 weeks) ; Fourth Grader Local Geography (3 weeks total)

Week of September 12-  First Grader Beginning Wet on Wet Watercolor Painting and Crayon Drawing (2 weeks total) ; Fourth Grader Local Geography

Week of September 19- First Grader Beginning Wet on Wet Watercolor Painting and Crayon Drawing'; Fourth Grader Math (3 weeks total)

Week of September 26- October 7  First Grader Introduction to Letters (5  weeks total); Fourth Grader Math

Week of October 10– Week of October 31 –  First Grader Introduction to Letters, Fourth Grader Man and Animal I  (4 weeks total)

Week of October 31/November 1 First Grader Fall Crafts and preparation for All Saints Day (1 week) ; Fourth Grader Man and Animal I

Week of November 7-December 2  First Grader Introduction to Numbers (4 weeks total) ; Fourth Grader Norse Myths (5 weeks total)

Week of December 5- December 16th First Grader Writing First Reader (2 weeks) ; Fourth Grader Math (2 weeks) with Grammar as Middle Lesson;  Advent Crafts

OFF December 19- January 7th

Week of January 9-January 13th First Grader Introduction to Pentatonic Flute and Counting Games (1 week) ; Fourth Grader Kalevala (3 weeks total)

Week of January 16-27 First Grader Science (3 weeks total) ; Fourth Grader Kalevala

Week of January 30th- February 3 First Grader Science ; Fourth Grader Local Geography (4 weeks total)

Week of February 6-February 24 First Grader Math (3 weeks total); Fourth Grader Local Geography

Week of February 27-March 9  First Grader Form Drawing (2 weeks); Fourth Grader Local Geography Man and Animal II (4 weeks total)

Week of  March 12-23  First Grader Word Families and Phonics /Make Readers (3 weeks); Fourth Grader Man and Animal II

Week of  March 26-30 First Grader Word Families and Phonics/Make Readers (3 weeks total); Fourth Grader Math  (3 weeks total)

Week of April 2- 13th   OFF

Week of April 16 and Week of April 23rd  Finish First Grader Word Families and Phonics/Make Readers (2 out of 3 weeks); Fourth Grader math (2 out of 3 weeks started before break)

Week of April 30 –May 18th First Grader Math (3 weeks); Fourth Grader  Four Elements (3 weeks)

Week of May 21-May 25 (1 week)  Drama, Stories, Review

Week of May 28th – safety week if we need to make anything up and push school further….Smile

Anyone else care to share their blocks for fall?

Many blessings,

Carrie

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15 thoughts on “A Skeleton Plan for Waldorf Homeschooling First and Fourth Grade

  1. I am delighted to see that ‘Kalevala’ is on your list – it is such a precious part of my own history, as a born and (mostly) raised Finn.

    We are starting a new chapter here this January, as my little one (now three) and I begin attending the parent & tot program at our local Waldorf School.

    Although he is certainly not yet at the age where he needs any formal groups or learning, I can feel that he is ready to make some friends and spread his wings a little.

    I am interested in making some sort of schedule for us to follow at home this year as well, so as to find a more fluid rhythm for our days. Although we are spending alot of time outdoors each day (rain or shine!), we are still struggling, the two of us to find a rhythm that really works.

    • HI Virpi!!
      Did you see the back post on The THree and Four Year Old in the Waldorf Home? Maybe that will help?
      Many blessings,
      Carrie

  2. Hi Carrie,

    I have indeed been reading many of the back posts, as I learn to navigate through your beautiful site – not sure if I have read the specific post you mention here – would you mind pointing me in the right direction?

    Kind Regards,

    Virpi

    • Susanne,
      I don’t know as I have it well thought out yet. I know the December one I want to make off The Seven Ravens, one of the fairy tales that resonates strongly with me and that I think will resonate strongly with this child. The other ones will also be off fairy tales, the later ones will be more complex obviously and will include word families we are working on. We will draw and write and bind the readers ourselves.
      It should be fun!
      Many blessings,
      Carrie

  3. I am wondering about two things – one, your blocks for the two kids are staggered with their start and end times. Is this on purpose? Have you found it easier to be doing, say, the first week of wet on wet with the little while doing the second week of local geography with the big, and then the first week of letters with the little while doing the second week of math with the big? My first instinct is to line the blocks up so we are all doing new stuff together but perhaps your experience has led you to a different conclusion.

    Similarly, you rarely have the subjects the two will be working on line up. Again, my first instinct is to have everyone do math together, and then everyone do language and stories together, and line up “first grade science” with “man and animal” or something like that. Have you found that not to be as do-able in your home?

    Thanks for putting this up, it’s always so cool to see what folks are doing :)

    • I am new to Waldorf with older kids (10, 12, 13), we have been homeschooling for 5 years so far and JUST came across Waldorf! I of course wish I would have found this method years ago! When I found Waldorf, it’s like I came home :-) I would LOVE to know your answer to this question. I am just starting to plan out the blocks we’ll do to get our feet wet. In trying to figure this out, it would be really helpful to see how other moms lay out there blocks, and why. Thanks a bunch!

    • Julie,
      Welcome to the world of Waldorf! I suggest you check out Melisa Nielsen’s work on “Coming to Waldorf Late” over at http://www.waldorfessentials.com. I think that would be helpful to you. If you have a ten year old, a twelve year old, and a thirteen year old, you are dealing with fourth grade (norse myths, local geography and Man and Animal come to mind), a twelve year old is grade six (Romans, Physics, Business Math, geography of Europe or Latin America depending on what you decide to do, Astronomy) and seventh grade (could be Medieval if you don’t do that in sixth grade, could be Renaissance, more Physics, Chemistry, Astronomy)…I just wrote a post about planning for sixth grade recently, so that should be up.

      Middle school years especially overlap and families move things around a bit sometimes. I would highly suggest a consult with Melisa Nielsen – being late to Waldorf, having three grades, etc. you will want to have a laid out plan with the help of someone experienced. Is there a local Waldorf homeschooling group in your area? That can also be helpful.

      I also recommend the Christopherus book “Waldorf Curriculum Overview for Homeschoolers.” I think that could be a big help as well.
      There is no perfect curriculum especially for the middle school years I think, so I think it is up to you to get with some mothers who have walked this path ahead of you and learn from them. :)

      Nice to have you here,
      Carrie

    • You are right, Coming to Waldorf late, by Melissa has been a huge help! I bought it 2 weeks ago and have read it and re-read it twice already, taking lots of notes along the way! We have always done science and history together as a group (my children are 15 months apart each) expecting more complex work from the older two. That being said they have all covered the same time periods in history and science subjects. What I have done is purchased grades 4 &5 from Waldorf Essentials and Earthschool (to see which I like better) and am going through them both and just doing the subjects we have not yet covered. We have done some of the subjects from 4,5,6 &7 before finding Waldorf. We should be all “caught up” by the end of the summer so they can start the next school year off on there own grade levels. Although I’d have to admit I am really going to miss doing history and science together as a group. Do any Waldorf homeschools do those main blocks together when they children close together in age? I plan on looking for other Waldorf homeschoolers in my area, I could not find an actual group though.

      Do you have any better suggestions for me?

      Thanks,
      Julie

    • Julie,
      Yes, sometimes parents do combine history or science with children that are that close in age. Absolutely. Check the Christopherus Networking Page to find others in your area, I believe Donna Ashton has also set up a Networking kind of site as well.

      Blessings,
      Carrie

  4. Carrie, what age is the first grader? I remember hearing a lot about Waldorf first grade at age 7. I will have a five year old by the fall and am antsy to do more with her. Currently we meet with our waldorf homeschooling group 2x/week and do seasonal songs, nature crafts, verses, letter of the week and outdoor time. I have friends with similar age children(4/5) doing geography and history. I always wonder if I am doing enough (yes, even AFTER reading your awesome posts on three-five year olds!).

    • Hi Meg! Yup, in Waldorf Land five is still a Kindergartner and you are doing all the right things….A Waldorf Kindergarten group typically would not be doing letters at all though. They would be doing lots of oral recitation, stories, seeing a puppet show –all things to build a rich oral vocabulary in preparation for the grades. You can do these things at home outside of your group though….I am sorry, I strongly disagree with history and geography for a five year old, even if I was not a Waldorf person. Developmentally, there is no point of reference for a five year old for history or geography. I invite you to head back to the Five Year Old In The Waldorf Home for more details and also you can use the search engine to look up all the posts on First Grade Readiness on this blog. Also, take a peek at “Your Five Year Old” by Bates and Ames, used copies abound on Amazon. Yes, they should be thoroughly six and a half or close to seven by the time Waldorf first grade hits for a number of reasons….
      Email me at carrie@theparentingpassageway.com if you would like to talk further about this! It is really, really important!!
      You are doing a good job, hang in there. An Early Years group typically would also be doing practical work together as a group – making butter, making bread or snack, singing, gardening…not letters.
      Blessings and love,
      Carrie

  5. Pingback: My Waldorf Homeschool Planning « The Parenting Passageway

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