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Old 10-29-2012, 10:31 AM   #1
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Not loving FIAR... suggestions?

This is our first year "officially" homeschooling, although DD1 (who is 5, btw), did some casual stuff last year (namely Teach Your Child to Read and some Saxon). This year, we are doing Five in a Row, Saxon 1, and Explode the Code. I was drawn to FIAR because it seemed a gentle, fun way to learn. And it is, I suppose.
My problem is that it seems rather random and each book does not build sequentially on another. So I feel like my daughter is getting a taste of random information- a casual mention of an idea or concept or area of the world, but not enough repetition to really instill the lessons. I also know that FIAR is largely what I make it, and I have tried to be proactive in coming up with fun activities to go along with the books.
I am also trying to be moderate because I know that she is FIVE and doesn't need to know how to diagram sentences or write expository essays yet. I do feel like she is getting a positive foundation with Saxon and Explode the Code, in math and reading respectively, but I sort of feel like the rest is... fluff.
Maybe "fluff" is good for a five year old? I don't know! I am new to this!
Does anybody have any suggestions on how we can implement FIAR better? Or another curriculum that would be a tad more structured in nature (while sticking with Saxon and ETC)?
Is it ridiculous to even consider something else two months into the school year?
Thanks in advance for any wisdom or advice!

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Old 10-29-2012, 10:52 AM   #2
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Re: Not loving FIAR... suggestions?

I think it depends on what you are wanting her to learn. All we do at that age is learning to read/phonics, math, and handwriting. Anything else is just random.
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Old 10-29-2012, 02:05 PM   #3
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Re: Not loving FIAR... suggestions?

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Originally Posted by tallanvor View Post
I think it depends on what you are wanting her to learn. All we do at that age is learning to read/phonics, math, and handwriting. Anything else is just random.


If you need "more" for FIAR, homeschoolshare.com has extra activities for each of the FIAR books. DD1 is 4, but working at a 1st grade level. Aside from reading, math and handwriting, we jump around a lot. Because kindergarten doesn't need all the "fluff," I feel like it gives me time to find the rest of what we'll want/need.

We're currently finishing up a halloween unit and working long term on weather/seasons.
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Old 10-30-2012, 03:13 PM   #4
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Re: Not loving FIAR... suggestions?

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Originally Posted by tibeca View Post


If you need "more" for FIAR, homeschoolshare.com has extra activities for each of the FIAR books. DD1 is 4, but working at a 1st grade level. Aside from reading, math and handwriting, we jump around a lot. Because kindergarten doesn't need all the "fluff," I feel like it gives me time to find the rest of what we'll want/need.

We're currently finishing up a halloween unit and working long term on weather/seasons.
This is what I was going to suggest.
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Old 11-09-2012, 05:41 AM   #5
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Re: Not loving FIAR... suggestions?

We started FIAR this year with my ds. We lasted thru book 6. It just wasnt for us. Not all curriculum works for every child. We are now using MUS, Explode the code, HWOT and just random science stuff (nature, health etc) and working on reading with the BOB series. And that is working for us currently. Some days he does quite a bit of work, somedays we just go to the library and do life skills. I leave it up to him as far as the pace he chooses to go. But I think FIAR is great for some children, just not mine. He would rather read about transformers or Star Wars. lol
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Old 11-09-2012, 05:54 AM   #6
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Re: Not loving FIAR... suggestions?

We didn't like fiar either, we have tried so many curriculums ad the one we ended up sticking with is Christian light, their kindergarten and learn to read program are especially nice. The little workbooks have lots of fun activities
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Old 11-09-2012, 04:38 PM   #7
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Re: Not loving FIAR... suggestions?

I think you do need something that fits both your and your child's personality.

That being said, I use FIAR (my DD is 5 too) and I agree it seems like "fluff". I was drawn to it for the same reasons as you. I skip around a lot and match a book with what we are doing in real life or what's going on in the world. It is surprising to me, how much she actually retains. We have been using it for six months now, and all of a sudden she will ask me a question or bring up a fact about something we learned months ago.

Since our other curriculums (math, spelling, logic, and handwriting) are very structured, I like having something unstructured that exposes my DD to a lot of different things. Around 7/8 I will start doing more language arts, science, and social studies structure.
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Old 11-16-2012, 07:51 PM   #8
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Re: Not loving FIAR... suggestions?

We didn't love it either. My 6 year old refused to listen to the book after the 2nd time. It just wasn't our thing. We are now using Reading Street for reading/phonics, etc. I'm still piecing things together for science and social studies.
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Old 11-21-2012, 11:14 PM   #9
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Re: Not loving FIAR... suggestions?

We had Before FIAR and it wasn't for us. I skimmed FIAR, but knew it wasn't going to be a match either. We are now using the PAL programs from IEW (Institute for Excellence in Writing) and we LOVE the programs. There are two, one is for reading and the other is for writing. You can just choose to do one or the other, but together they are great! It's structured, but has flexibility in what you do. My daughter's learning has exploded b/c of this program. She is beginning to read and have only done 7 of the lessons. It's fun for both of us and doesn't not require a lot of prep time. I highly recommend checking it out. My daughter is also 5

http://www.excellenceinwriting.com/c...-2-pal-reading
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