Christopherus Curriculum: Update

I wrote the following for the February issue of our e-mail newsletter and realized that it would be good to share this information on the blog too! This is a progress report concerning the new Christopherus Curriculum.

Second and Third Grade

We’re right on schedule with the new second and third grade curriculums. I am so
pleased with them I could burst – and I really think that if you like our other
materials you will be thrilled with them: they are deeper; contain more step-by
step instructions for artistic work; and are more user-friendly, more doable and
more complete than anything we’ve produced yet! I have just finished our two
third grade Native American blocks. I have given full lesson material so that
you can share beautiful living pictures of the People of the Desert, People of
Snow and Ice, People of the Woodlands, People of the Swamps, People of the Rice,
People of the Plains and People of Water and Mist with your child. The theme for
third grade is Practical Work – and the main thrust of the Native American main
lessons is how the people lived – how they lived in harmony with their
environments and how the different ways the different people hunted, farmed and
built their homes was/is an expression of this. Thus part of the Building theme
for third grade finds expression in an exploration of how different Native
American peoples lived/live and built their homes.

Building is also picked up again in two Practical Work main lessons where I
suggest a host of practical building projects. Measuring, the main topic for
third grade math, is presented and then picked up again through practical
building work. And creating a Three Sisters Garden comes out of the Native
American main lessons and is a large part of the practical work in the latter
part of third grade.

Weather is the main science topic for third grade (see here for more on how we have developed our Christopherus science curriculum for all 8 grades) and is woven into a number of lessons as well as its own mini
main lessons.

So you can see how the third grade curriculum in particular is really one
integrated whole (there’s more than I have mentioned here as well). This is one
reason why we have only made one component of the third grade curriculum
available separately (OldTestament Stories) as opposed to three in second grade (Animal Legends, Saints & Heroes, Second Grade Math).

see here for a simple overview of our second and third grade curriculum and here for answers to Frequently Asked Questions about the new curriculum).

Fourth and Fifth Grade

The fourth grade curriculum lends itself more easily to being split into
components and we will probably have at least two main lessons available
separately (Fourth Grade Math at the end of the summer or early fall and then
Man & Animal at some later point.) We also plan to have a fifth grade Ancient
Myths book available (perhaps early 2009) to join the fifth grade Botany
which is already available.

At some point after the third and second grade curriculums
are available, we will have a page up on our website to help homeschoolers
bridge the current gaps in our curriculum. This will be a How to Put Together
Fourth Grade page similar to the current
How to Put Together Second Grade page. Parents of 2008/09 fourth graders will have our
fifth grade curriculum ready for them when they need it! And then the intention
is to start producing the middle years curriculum.

Sixth through Eighth Grade

At the moment my thoughts on that are to put together 6th –
8th grade books by subject so that parents can customize, depending on the needs
of their middle years children. In other words, we will, most likely, have
Middle Years Math, Middle Years Science and Middle Years Language Arts books
(this latter volume being the second in the series of Living Language
Language Arts books, the grades 1 through 5 already available).. These will be joined by a selection of
various main lesson books (like the current Roman History and Middle Ages unit
studies) so that there is a lot of flexibility in how one sequences the work. In
our Waldorf Curriculum Overview I discuss how the middle years curriculum is much
more fluid than the earlier years curriculum and how one can work with that at
home. Anyway…. more on this later next year!

Posted on March 28, 2008 in Publications

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