Thursday, 5 March 2009

Has it been that long?

SubhanAllah, it's been quite a while since I last blogged so I won't bore you with everything that's been going on, just some of it.

Well as is the nature of home schooling we have changed our routines and timetable quite a bit since I last wrote and in fact we didn't have a time table at all for quite some time but lots of learning still goes on mashaAllah. The three boys have just started a madressa that starts at 7am, it is a bit of a way from us so we do get up really early and I am in the process of restructuring our week and education timetable to fit in around that. The great thing is that we can be home by 8.30-9am and be ready to get on with our work inshaAllah. The boys are still not totally appreciating the wonderful, but rare opportunity to get up at 5.45 to go and learn Quran etc in the early morning when their little minds are at their optimum learning capability, but I am sure they will get used to it inshaAllah.

For Islamic studies we are now using the Tas_Heelul books for fiqh, history, adaab & akhlaaq and Aqaa-id, you can view them here inshaAllah (this shop has free postage & packaging too) as they use this in madressa. I should also mention that the books have recently been revised and fully updated and are much more colourful and child friendly that the pics of these books would have you believe.

For maths we follow the lessons on Mind Sprinting; a free online tutoring service for math and English (to some point). The child takes an online assessment test and a free personalise programme it put together for him/her. I have found that it doesn't work for me as an everyday tool but it does give us a springboard to base our weeks math lessons around. I sometimes use the worksheets and sometimes I don't, but if you use the manual method you can just tick off the units you are sure they can do and then move on to the next subject. I love it! We just do some general work in exercise books for English and are still using the Nelson Thorne books but not for everyday use.

The two little ones are working on a 1-100 lapbook and a A-Z scrapbook, modified slightly from a unit that can be downloaded from - the mini-books etc easily fits on two pages of a scrap book and is really well done however, it does have some quotes from the Bible etc that I have had to rewrite. We also added other appropriate islamic words or items to the pages such as the name Allah to 'a', Bismillah to 'b', prayer mat to 'p' etc., we also added some stuff from the Jolly Phonics books that they are working on i.e. the sign for the letter and the writing practice sheet and a list of words starting with that letter.

With the group teaching sessions we finished the plant lapbooks (pics to follow) and have almost finished our second topic on the Weather. SubhanAllah, there is so much in the weather to bring the kids closer to Allah, I was fascinated and learned so much (I hope the kids did too!)..... but alas, this is our last project with our little group, ahhhhh! We will miss them lots.... but I am studying on a new course which, when coupled with the early mornings means that we have had to trim down our outside activities; planning for a day of teaching takes me a long, long time (but that could just be me!!).

I am also aiming to introduce a dhikr session into our day both in the morning and evenings inshaAllah which will include some reading from a wonderful book on the life of the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) which was given to us by a very kind, loving sister. Jazakillahu Khair.

Haven't thought much beyond this but will add some more subjects as the new routine unfolds and grows inshaAllah. I love the beauty of home schooling and the way that we can adapt our teaching to suit our ever changing prayer times, home situations or weather....... alhamdulillah.

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