Friday, August 27, 2010

Five in a Row is F.U.N!!!

Hi there!

I thought I would take a minute, and share with you my schedule and planner for FIAR, this year.  I have several friends doing FIAR this year, and  Julia over at Bible Lessons for preschoolers  and Little lessons for life, also was asking about FIAR and 1st grade.

(psst, all non homeschooling viewers; aka papa, gramma, daddy may not be interested in this one tiny bit, I will warn you there are NO cute pictures of your children in this post only boring sheets of paper!. you may abort if necessary.. OR you can read on and see how much work I am putting into these yahoos!)

 One of my concerns was is FIAR enough? It just seems SO EASY... =) Read a story, the SAME story five days in a row and basically disect it? hmmm.... I know that on the message boards so many families are using and with no worries.. but I just had to make sure myself that I was going to be covering what needs to be covered for 1st grade & up  .... with the help the book Home learning year by year by Rupp, And more reading here and there, FIAR really is ENOUGH! =)  Praise God!

Last year, I totally winged it, didn't have a plan, just picked the books that I was in the mood for, did the lessons lightly, and kept a mental note etc.... it was fun, after all it was only kindergarten... =) right? then the "grade school" talk, and expectations of my soon to be 1st grader made me panic!!! that I am more comfortable using FIAR, and have learned alot this past year, I decided  a nifty planner would be my new friend. =) .......that being said, I decided to use their Curriculum to it's Fullest this year, as well as other FIAR ideas, extra books etc.. whatever FIAR helps I could get my hands on!
(p.s.- NOT being paid for any of this, this is all my own! i just wanted to share!)
for starters, We have enjoyed using this so far with our lessons. while this is not our entire bible study, this is a great addition to each book we read... And the lessons are great for ALL ages.

This is alot of fun! I know I could look up ideas, get the recipes somehwere, on what to cook etc.. but it is really nice to have it all in one spot, and easily refer to.  Saves me time.  And with the digital version, I can print just what I need.

I decided to use the FIAR planner along with bits and pieces from other planners this year.
I am going to show you how I planned out my year. Their is a suggested way to do the books in the back of each volume,  but I decided to use all the books I have within all 3 Volumes, before buying more books, and also work them around the holiday's/season etc... (yes, I will be skipping around volume to volume)

After writing it all down on paper, and tweaking it, it was ready to print.  (only took me a few weeks!)

Then I made a Check off list

Then for each book this year, I printed out 3 FIAR pages from their planner this year (those were the only things used out of the their digital planner...)

1. The Weekly lessons plans calander ( all blank for me to fill in as needed)
2. Other subjects or lessons to cover with the Title
3. Go along books/field trip info/etc... for each Title. 

I was able to start planning by just flipping to the write section in my "spare"time (ha ha) to plan a bit ahead or as an idea struck me, or if I saw something online I could just jot it down in the right spot.
In the beginning of the Planner I have included these Resources free online, that others  have put together....i did put them in sheet protectors for easy page turning...
FIAR supplimental Booklist all 4 volumes

                                                                    Master Geography list

                                                                     Galloping the Globe List

                                                      FIAR Books by season , theme, geogrpahy

                                                 Matching Pre-school units with Elementary units

                                                                                  BFIAR chart

Field Trip list by title

Land of make believe map for books such as "harold and the purple crayon"

Map activities for Land of Make Believe Map


In the back of each Teacher Volume are the Story discs, KT and I colored them, and then laminated them.

                        I store these right by our World Calander with the putty. easy on, easy off!

                 It then stays on our calander for the length of our study.. and we refer to it often.

                                      I did puirchase the FIAR timeline as well.. looking forward to it!

I did purchase the digital Fall season book to see how we like it. So far so good.

I made each child their own Nature book by season to go along. I am making them some Nature bags, out of their daddy's old Cargos...

This is where the bin for our lapbook and notebook stuff. Filed by Book Title...

A very useful book holder, especailly for our art lessons, when we need to see the book, and also for display.

Each kinder has thier own FIAR binder this year to store all their papers, projects, and lapbooks in. So far it's working great, and the love it!

And finally, I love to have a display going during the week of what we are studying. It's fun to set up on sunday nights, and see the kids check it out on monday mornings, they love it, and always visit the learning center often... it's a huge hit! It can be something as simple as just the book, and a some go along books, to a table full of the story theme... in this photo for Madaline, it was an Eiffel tower, the doll, flowers, go along books, Eiffel tower puzzle, printed map of France and a colored picture of Madaline. Lots of fun!

Our weekly FIAR schedule goes a bit like this: + every day is math and phonics/writing etc
1. Monday- social studies, geography, charachter building
2. Tuesday - Language arts
3. Wednesday - lapbooking and ART
4. Thursday- cooking, applied math,
5.- Friday- week wrap up, Science

I also have a copy of the FIAR christmas book list by the Lambert Family too!
Some other things I have in my planner are:

  • Unit study planner pages from

  • FIAR vocabulary list ( I keep a running list from each title we row, I made it myself)

  • holiday ideas

  • our Read aloud list

  • Our full curriculum plan for both kinders

  • character section, in here I copied pages from the creative correction book, and some other things that encourage me in this area. it's great to flip to in a hurry!

  • List of books I have and need to buy
Some other great reads over at the Five in a row site that are very helpful are:

Another set of pages I have in my planner are from
she is awesome! I just finished her book Steady Days,
she has some great FREE pages for your planner

So along with math and Phonics/reading/writing I feel like I am prepared for the new year ahead!
by the way, in case you are wondering for 1st grade, Home learning year by year's 1st grade scope and sequence does have American history, but none of this year's FIAR books have that, so in November we are going to do a unit study, and with other books we have... cover it that way...  But everything else is covered!

Now that I am getting myself somewhat more organized, the kids are next! This week mama is setting up our new Chore System!


I finished our new reading area, more on that in a bit!

If you have any questions, or would like me to email you my forms,  I would love to. just send me a note. I hope this helps, and encourages you, Blessings,

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Night of the Moonjellies FIAR Study

The first week is over! Phew! =) We had some up's and some downs, more downs then ups... But we made it through, and are so excited to share our studies this week!
Our First five in a row book this year is ....

Psalm 107:23
23 Others went out on the sea in ships;
they were merchants on the mighty waters...

It was a fun study, and being that the summer is almost over, it was a good book to start with...
I still had alot of my ocean study stuff on on display, so this was an easy one to put together.

For those of you who haven't read it, (daddy, gramma's, papas etc)

From Publishers Weekly

This beautifully illustrated picture book debut evokes the fullness of a New England childhood through descriptions of a single summer day. Seven-year-old Mark is helping at his grandmother's seaside hot dog stand, (MAR-GRAS)  purveyor of "the best lobster rolls in New England." He finds "something that felt like jelly" on the beach, but further investigation is postponed by the hubbub at the stand: "Fries crackled. Cheeseburgers sizzled. 'More rolls!' called Uncle Al. 'Rushing through!' Gram said, carrying a kettle of clam chowder up front. 'Low on straws!' Rollie shouted. I hurried to fill the box." When the busy day ends, Gram and Mark take a boat out to sea, where Mark sees an oceanful of shimmering white lights--moonjellies--and returns his to the water.

I even found this adorable little beach resturant shack for 1 euro on clearance last week! I was going to change the name of it to "Mar-Gras" isn't it fun? JT lined the area with his sea glass...

my nifty signage.

I copied this right from Mark Shasha's Web site for our display...
I added this little sand play center on the table too. I filled it with colored sand, some shells, sea glass, and real baby starfish (from gramma). This was a huge hit! they played with this ALOT.

another cool Giant starfish from gramma...

Here is a reading area,. and i filled it with Go-along books, and books about the Ocean and ocean life.

one of their favorites for life by the sea were...
Wednesday was Art day, We did our first lesson with Oil Pastels.
Kyree loved it and had a wonderful time with them..

                         JT started out having a good time, and he took a turn the wrong way...
sooo, i will show you Kyree's beautiful picture of the boat, out on the sea....

And since I don't have one of JT's to share, I will share mine. =) (we copied and then pasted the boat onto the sea)
By thursday we needed to get out of the house, at lunch time , I packed the kids up and headed out for lunch! and so where else can you find the "Mar-Gra's" Menu AND where do they wear the paper hats??
Can you think of anyone else that serves Hamburgers, Shakes and fries???

The kids were thrilled!
A very exciting time, and we of course ordered shakes too! It was their first time eating there...
I think this was a good outing!
We made our own Aquatic biome. We glued sand paper, and stickers and shells ...this was so fun!

She made 3 that day!
we also started our notebooking again..
I made each of them their own Five in a Row binder to use for all our lapbooks, and notebooking etc...

Here are a few things from each of their books this week, Most everything is from


we finished off our lesson with a trip to the Seal life center to see some Jellies!

The kids had the BEST time!!!
This was so adorable.. and so fun.

They only had one tiny jellfish though, that we saw.. which was a little sad. but still a great time!
We went with some WONDERFUL , AMAZING friends, and made a few NEW friends too!
I made all the kids a "Treasures of the Sea" hunt with a prize at the end.
I just copied some pictures of the animals I expected we would see, on both sides, laminated them, and then hole punched a string so they could wear it around their necks ( hands free). Then we gave them a sticker for each creature they spotted. At the end of the trip, if they filled up the card they got a fun goodie bag with some treasures. It was alot of fun!
I also gave each family a page of some of the ocean creatures with their names in english/German. from
And this was our beautiful adventure. God's creatures are SO AMAZING. whenever you look at sea life, you can't help but be truly in awe of  his handiwork!
By the end of the week, there was alot of fighting going on. So I closed down the school early....
here is KT earlier this week with her new school stuff that came in the mail.
she is very excited!

I made JT a Nature journal, and we had some time this week to try it out!
Here, he is drawing a tree where KT picked some pods from....

And that is our week!
And if I get attitudes like this again...I am going to call the principal home for a meeting!

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