OUR SUMMER "SCHOOL" PLANS

Summer break is here! And, we're just a few months away from our oldest starting kindergarten. He has attended a two day a week preschool for four years now and has learned so much. We truly believe he is fully prepared for kindergarten (thanks to all of his amazing teachers!), but want to make sure we don't fall out of routine over the summer months. 

I mentioned on Instagram a few of the workbooks I purchased to go through this summer and gave a brief walk through of them on my Instastories, but I thought I'd share a little more of a detailed plan here. 

We'll be working in several different workbooks five days a week during the summer, taking Saturday and Sundays off. Almost all of this will be review work and won't take more than thirty minutes a day tops. I'm not looking to wear him out during his summer break, I just want to keep him fresh. 

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Listed below are the main workbooks we'll be using. All of them are from Kumon Publishers, except the "Handwriting" workbook which is from Carson-Dellosa publishers. There was an "Are You Ready For Kindergarten? Pasting Skills" workbook available, but the reviews for it were sub par, so I went with another Kumon Publishers pasting book that had great reviews. (Disclosure: the links below are Amazon affiliate links. If you purchase through these links, I get a small return from your purchase. Those returns help me pay the monthly fees for this site, but it doesn't cost you any more than you would regularly pay!)

The "Handwriting" workbook begins with daily pages on an individual letter. It then builds into writing several separate words. And lastly you combine those words into sentences. Gunner is already able to write his letters, but our goal for this summer is to really practice, practice and make out handwriting even more legible. 

The "Math Skills" workbook works through counting, identifying numbers, and shapes. While the "Verbal Skills" workbook continues to focus on letters, but instead verbally saying them and sounding them out. Both of these workbook have more of an activity or learning puzzle style (think connect the dots). 

And all of the books get more advanced through each daily lesson. For instance, the "Scissor Skills" book begins with cutting along a straight line and ends with the child cutting out individual shapes. Scissor skills are super important for kindergarteners and most kindergarten teachers ask that you make sure your kids know how to use a pair of scissors before the school year starts. It takes time and practice for them if they've never done this before, so be patient! Also, if you have a left handed child, make sure to buy them a pair of left handed scissors. This made a world of difference for Gunner. 

The "Pasting Skills" workbook will also have a cutting that needs to be done for each activity. You could have your child do that, or to speed up the process, you could pre-cut the pieces they need to paste. I think that's totally fine as many of the pieces are more advanced shapes and the focus is more on following steps and locations for the pasting. 

Our Schedule:

We'll work in the "Handwriting: Printing" book every day, while alternating between the "Math Skills" and "Verbal Skills" books, as well as through the "Scissor Skills" and "My Book of Pasting" workbook. 

Here's an example of how we'll alternate based on our first week of summer "school". 

Day 1: "Printing" page 3, "Math" activity 1, "Scissor" activity 1
Day 2: "Printing" page 4, "Verbal" activity 1, "Pasting" activity 1
Day 3: "Printing" page 5, "Math" activity 2, "Scissor" activity 2
Day 4: "Printing" page 6, "Verbal" activity 2, "Pasting" activity 2

I imagine we'll also throw in the occasional crafty learning activity on days/weeks we have more down time. You can see all of my favorite preschool and learning activities on my Pinterest boards here!

Hope this helps!

CHRISTMAS CARDS WITH MINTED

I am typically a holiday purist. I like to give each holiday its' time in the spotlight, but that doesn't mean I can't start the fun planning for Christmas now. One thing that does need some forethought? Christmas cards!

I am absolutely one of those people that gets giddy about sending out Christmas cards…except last year. No Christmas cards last year because #somanybabies. It does seem to be a tradition that is dying off as each year we receive fewer and fewer cards, but that doesn’t stop me from getting excited about sending out ours!

Minted has long been one of my favorite resources for Christmas cards (we love their birthday invites and their affordable, unique art too!) because they have so many different options. You’ll find cards that are modern, traditional, bright, neutral, spiritual, silly, and more; plus, their quality is hard to beat. And my most favorite thing about Minted? They'll address your envelopes for free! It is seriously the best feature. 

Every year I share some of my favorite designs from Minted’s current Christmas card bunch, so here are my favorites for Christmas 2015!

all images via the Minted website. click each photo to be taken to direct links. 

And right now, if you FOLLOW THIS REFERRAL LINK and create an account with Minted, you'll receive $25 off your first order! Just spreading a little Christmas love, friends. You know, before Thanksgiving and all...

Does your family send out Christmas cards every year? 

 

*this is not a sponsored or endorsed post, however affiliate links were used within the text. 

Documenting Milestones With BB Blocks

I'm currently in the season of life where my friends are having babies. And not their first babies -- often their second or third. Many of them have all of the gear they could need and plenty of clothes; so, I'm always on the lookout for unique gift ideas.

My newest favorite? These wooden blocks from BB Blocks.
 

I love that these blocks can work for multiple purposes beyond documenting baby's first year. Above you can see the different words available on the sides of one of the blocks, making it possible for you to document birthdays, school years, and pregnancies. Our BB Blocks are the "Cotton Candy" color, but they're also available in a color set called "Woodlands" that feature green, blue, and brown lettering and numbers

Order your BB Blocks here and check our their "photos" section for some fun ways to use your blocks.


Items in this post were given to me by BB Blocks in exchange for review and promotion as a Mom's Best Network brand ambassador. All photos and opinions are my own.