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Thread: Am I crazy for doing Y1 instead of Primer for K?

  1. #1

    Am I crazy for doing Y1 instead of Primer for K?

    My daughter will start K next fall (2015; yes, I'm trying to plan over a year out). I've looked at a whole lot of options for K and the years beyond, and I'm leaning heavily toward TOG. I think there are other programs that would work better for K and as well for 1-3, but TOG seems to be the best for what I want beyond that, and if I'm going to buy it then, I may as well buy it earlier and get maximum use from it.

    I considered Primer for K, since that's what it's designed for, but the more I looked at it, the more I realized that it doesn't seem to be any easier necessarily than the LG level--the books are mostly LG books, after all.

    So given that, and my family's unique situation (most likely for grades K-2 only) that results in us (1) not having access to libraries but (2) being reimbursed for some educational expenses, it makes sense to me to start Year 1 in K so that we can get through 3 of the 4 years while we're eligible for reimbursement, leaving just one year-plan that we'd pay for completely on our own--once we're out of our current situation, we won't be reimbursed, but we should have library access again, so we won't need to buy as many books.

    The only thing holding me back from this plan is that it does look like LG work is rather advanced for kindergarten. I'm not too worried about my ability to treat TOG as a buffet and not completely overwhelm us with the amount of work, but I am concerned that there may not be enough on the buffet that's appropriate for a kindergartener who's on the young side, with a summer birthday. I am beginning to teach her to read now, so I'm hopeful that she'll be reading pretty well by then, but there's no way to tell for certain at this point.

    If I buy Year 1 for a young kindergartener, will I actually be able to use it, or will I have to gut it so much to make it developmentally appropriate that I can't really justify buying it? (I very much want it to work for K because of the reimbursement issue, but if I can't justify buying it with my own money at that point, I can't justify buying it with someone else's either.)

    Thank you for any words of wisdom you have to offer!

  2. #2
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    Deborah,

    You can certainly do Year 1 with your Kindergarten student. You do need to adapt to doing more of the hands on activities which should not be exceptionally hard as you will just do a lighter load with them.

    As far as map work, get a map and mark the places they are studying. Let them map cookie dough maps, etc. Do basic facts with the history you are studying such as doing coloring pages of Bible stories, places, etc. For Church History they will be doing Bible stories. History & Literature will be done by mostly read aloud books. Arts and activities will be simple items like making a pyramid of sugar cubes, etc.

    You will be spending time on doing Letters, Numbers, Handwriting, Phonics, Math, and Science. All of these resources of course are not included in the curriculum and you can chose your own resources for these.

    Now with this being said, Primer makes Kindergarten a breeze for you to do. Everything is packaged and ready for the lighter load you take with a Kindergarten student. You will receive the guidebook which is basically the Teacher's Notes that you find in the year plans of Tapestry. The handbook which gives you all of the student assignments and lists for materials you will need for the weeks activities etc. The activity book gives you books with pages that go hand in hand with the lessons they study each week. Just enough to cement learning but not enough to overwhelm. I highly recommend Love The Journey as well. Marcia wrote this book as a homeschool mom herself and leads you on her personal journey of homeschooling and how as a mom you can love the journey of homeschooling too.

    The big difference in the Tapestry year plan versus the Primer is that in the year plan you will be studying one era of history in a year. In Primer you get a small portion of each of the four year plans. You will go from Ancient Times to Modern Times in the span of a year. The books for the primer versus the year plan is cheaper as well.

    In the end the choice is up to you. Do you want a year plan that can be used again and again or do you want a year plan that is strictly one year for your Kindergarten student. I hope I've helped shed some light on both of these choices. Have a great day!
    God Bless,
    Sharon Land
    Curriculum Specialist
    Lampstand Press, Ltd.
    423-765-2833 (Option 3)

    We always thank God for all of you, mentioning you in our prayers. (NIV)
    1 Thessalonians 1:2

  3. #3
    that's good advice...
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  4. #4
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    I started Tapestry when my oldest were in k and 1st. I have NEVER regretted it! We took it at half pace though, taking two weeks to cover one week of material, which worked great for us. In your case, with the reimbursement consideration, you might want to go ahead and do it as written to be able to purchase a year plan each year. Tapestry really is the icing on the cake at that level since the bulk of your time will be spent working on phonics and handwriting. I read aloud as many of the books as I could find and we did many of the projects as well as making salt maps. My girls loved it! No we didn't use the majority of what Tapestry offers just because my girls were too small, but I am so glad I had that time to get familiar with the program and learn how it flows. I tried to read some of the upper level books myself as we went along (but I had a toddler and was pregnant that year too so I was pretty busy) which was great since my girls are now at the dialectic level and I have already read some of their books. Now we are in our 9th year with Tapestry, in our second time through, and I am in love with the program even more today than I was back then. If you plan to stick with the program for years to come, I say invest in it now. Of course, Primer wasn't an option when we started so I didn't have to make that tough decision. ;-)

  5. #5
    Thank you for your response, Beth! That is very encouraging. I wonder ... do you happen to blog about your homeschool? If so, I'd love to know where

  6. #6
    It looks like you've received some great input!! With the reimbursement consideration, I think your plan to just go with Y1 for Kindergarten is a great plan! I had intended to go with Y1 for my K'er but then they released Primer so I went that direction for our first year. It's great but I can see how just doing Y1 would be easy enough to lighten for K anyway. Besides, for us, this year being K, we're mostly focused on math and English, so I use Primer as a supplement right now. We don't get to it every day, as sometimes our English takes us an entire hour itself and I try to keep our schooling time short. Have fun with it and enjoy the K year!!

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