Apr 14, 2013

2013-14 Afterschooling Programme, Grade 1 Edition

It's that time of year again, when I make a plan for my kids' education and totally freak out about how they will actually achieve.

This first week of grade 1 really knocked me for six. There is a lot more work to having an elementary school student in Japan than one in Canada. I've already messed up by not being able to read the teacher's mind and send textbooks (which they keep at home, not school) I didn't know they needed. At least I am not alone and some of my neighbours are having the same mind-reading problem and they went to Japanese school! But between this and my son's very competitive club activities I do not know how much of the curriculum I am planning will actually get done.

My main plan is to keep going along with what we did last year in Kindergarten -  see my afterschooling plan here. I plan to use the British Columbia grade 1 curriculum as a base, and work from there. Our main resources are the Lesson Pathways website and the Complete Canadian Curriculum workbook for Grade 1. (Here's a similar one for Americans)

Because my son goes to afterschool care while I work, and he needs drills to work on while he is there but won't have instruction, I have prepared a number of workbooks. My daughter (4) is using the Complete Early Skills for Preschool workbook aimed at Canadians, and my son has the same one for Grade 1 (US version). He also has Complete Reading for Grade 1, and Everything About Animals, both for Canadians.

Of course reading is going to play a huge role in both of my kids' afterschooling plans. I wish that I had a list of all the books grade 1 kids in a Canadian classroom read! I have ordered some books with themes that I know play a role in the grade 1 curriculum, such as What's for Lunch? How Schoolchildren Eat Around the World. But I am always on the lookout for more good fiction and nonfiction books at my son's reading level.

The good thing about students leaving their textbooks at home is I get a chance to leisurely leaf through and check out what my son is learning and try to match the books we buy in English to the subject he is learning in Japanese. He is starting this week with a poem about spring, so I found and English one in a book called Red Sings From Treetops by Joyce Sidman. It's perfect for his reading level, and for the feelings this season brings.

In Spring/ Red sings/ from treetops:
each note dropping/like a cherry/into my ear.

If you have an afterschool programme I would love to hear what has and hasn't worked for you. Or tell me I am being too ambitious. :)

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