Friday, 25 January 2008

Curriculum planning...

I'm beginning to realise that although I found the National Curriculum long winded, rushed and almost impossible for Hettie to achieve all the goals it's fairly easy to follow and there's lots of info. You only need to pick up a Year 4 book in WHSmiths and you can more or less have an idea of exactly what to do. And I am not knocking anyone following the NC at all, we have for a year and I spent many an hour sorting it out.

But following Waldorf fairly closely to the actual curriculum takes some degree of planning. I could of course just purchase a fairly Waldorf curriulum but for one you can't get to see a bit of any that are available and theres no roon for manouvre. We've started off fairly well but I felt the need for a plan! Also as we've started a term in so I've got to squish it altogether a bit. So I made a read aloud reading list to start with:

Little House Books, Laura Ingalls Wilder
Farmer Boy, Laura Ingalls Wilder
The Jungle Book, Rudyard Kipling
Just So Stories, Rudyard Kipling
Charlottes Web, EB White
The Railway Children, E Nesbit
Kidnapped, RL Stevenson
Treasure Island, RL Stevenson
Little Women, Louisa May Alcott
The Hobbit, JRR Tolkein
Swallows and Amazons, Arthur Ransome
Heidi, Johanna Spyri
The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, Mark Twain
White Fang, Jack London
The Call of the Wild, Jack London
The Secret Garden, Frances Hodgson Burnett

Now I'm not expecting to read them all by July, but I needed a focus list, and this will carry over to next year, or whenever!

Using Donna Simmons 'Waldorf Curriculum Overview For Home Schoolers' and 'Living Language' I'm cobbling together my plan. So our main lessons are going to be:

Old Testament Stories
Farming & Gardening
Buildings & Shelters
Native American Stories

Now in 3rd Grade these do all seem to mix in together at some point, but its a practical year for Waldorf so not too many main lesson books.

I'm gathering together all the verses, short stories, lesson plans for grammar etc that I want to use and either typing up or copying to put together in a folder. Probably much more than we will ever need or use. I needed some focus for english and maths as well, so I'm ploughing through to see roughly where we should be and where we actually are. Surprisingly we're not as far behind as we are in the NC.

I don't really want a plan to follow to the letter each day but more of a guide so I can have on hand what we need, and a vague idea of what we need to cover, all bound together. Otherwise I'm spending hours looking through books every night.

I'm also using Eric Fairman's Path of Discovery Vol 3 and Roy Wilkinson's Teaching Practical Activities to help with the main lessons. These are relatively inexpensive but really excellent for explaining what to include.

Ok so back to the planning and maybe next year it won't take so long!


Angel said...

Sounds like a good plan, I'll be following it with interest. Have you seen that Christopherus will be releasing actual curriculums for each grade within the next couple of years?


Lisa said...

Hi Carol

We're a year out each time for the publishing of our grade unfortunately!

Lisa x

Poppy & Mei said...

I'm so lucky to have Ladies such as yourself a step ahead.
Reading your blog gives an insight into the future & takes some of the "will I / won't I" pressure off.
If there is anything I can do to help you, please let me know! Xxx

Mrs. Darling said...

I like your plan. It sounds like it would be fun to be in your school!