Calendar Notebooks & Calendar Time
Today is day 4 of my 6 day series on Homeschool Planning A Step By Step Guide. So far I have covered how to decide how many days will be in your homeschool year, scheduling it all, and organizing it into 1 central location. Today I am going to talk about our Calendar notebooks and other activities we use to learn many different skills.
Calendar time/calendar notebooks looks a little different in our house depending on the age group. My older kids would rather work independently on their calendar notebooks, my younger 2 still use a big calendar that we add a number to each day. Once the younger kids are in K/1st grade they start working on some of their own calendar pages as well as working on the big calendar still, if they choose to.
If one of my kids is struggling with something, I find a resource to help them and add it into their calendar notebook for them to practice on. I have found this to be a great way to continuously practice some of the skills they need a boost in.
There are a few different resources I use for the pages found inside our different notebooks Mrs. Meacham’s Classroom Snapshot is a lot of the older kids notebook pages, a lot of the younger kids pages come from Homeschool Creations. We have also used some of the great resources from 1+1+1=1 daily calendar notebook pages.
Younger Kids Calendar Time
When we add numbers to our calendar we practice many different skills here are some of the things we have found to be extremely helpful in teaching the kids when they are younger.
- Counting forward ~ up until the current day and having them figure out what day comes next, then counting up again.
- Skip counting ~ for my later Kindergartner and 1st graders.
- Counting backwards ~ Down from the current day.
- Months ~ Taking about the month we are on, singing our months of the year song.
- Seasons ~ Talking about what each of the seasons looks like and what season we are currently in.
- Holidays/Birthdays ~ Discussing upcoming holidays and birthdays.
- Visual Schedule ~ Counting down the days untill big events. Because Ethan is very ritualistic he needs to be continuously told about upcoming events, vacations, outings, etc… Adding this to our calendar time has dramatically helped him prepare for upcoming schedule disruption.
Some days the boys will use a pointer stick we made from a metal pole by adding ribbons to the end. They point out the number I call out and use it for counting the numbers up to the current date. This makes the repetitive counting a little more enjoyable.
Younger Kids Calendar Time Pages
Later in the Kindergarten year or starting into their 1st grade year they get started on some of their own calendar notebook pages. I base when they start the different pages on what skills they are needing to learn in the upcoming year. Now with the younger ones I do not make them into a notebook like I do the big kids. What I do for them is put some of the pages in a page protector so they can use a dry erase marker other pages I keep in my Homeschool Moms Binder and pull them out each day.
Some of the things you will find in our younger kids calendar time pages and the skills they learn are.
- 100 Days Of School ~ For each day we have been in school the kids will color in or put a sticker inside of the square. Then we will count by 10’s or 1’s to find out how many days we have been in school.
- Weather Graphing ~ Go to the window and figure out what the weather is outside and then graph it on a monthly calendar. We talk about how many days it was cloudy, sunny, which had the most, which had the least, etc…
- Write the Date, Fill In the Time and temperature page ~ Practice writing the date, find out the time and fill in the hands on the clock, and fill in the thermometer with the temperature. On this page we work together to figure out the time as well at the temperature and until they get the concept we only figure out the time to the 5’s. After time and lots of practice we start doing both to the 1’s.
- Monthly Calendar To Fill In ~ At this age we work together to fill in the calendar each month, and then they work on filling the numbers in each day.
- Write The Date ~ Practice writing the date page for the younger kids only has the number date they do not have to write it multiple times. In my opinion this is more of what the younger kids need, expecting to much will turn their interest away fast.
- Practice Writing Your Name ~ Because the younger ones need help writing their name each month they write their name and compare to previous months. At the beginning of Kidergarten I will make lines for the kids to connect to trace their name. As time goes on I make the dots further and further apart by about half way through the year they are able to write their name without any lines usually. During the week we will also practice recognizing and writing other family members names.
- Tally Mark Page ~ Make a tally mark for each day of the week including weekends. Once they have a group of 5 tally marks they circle the group and then practice counting by both 5’s and even sometimes 10’s with the tally marks on the page.
Older Kids Calendar Notebook
Below are some pictures from the older kids notebook. Unlike the younger kids I get all of the older kids calendar pages printed out and bind them into a book for them to use each day. They will continue to work on these until all the different skills are mastered.
We add different things to each kids calendar notebooks, it really depends on their age and abilities. Here is a list of the different things added through out the older kids and how we use it.
- Monthly Calendar ~ Each month the kids fill out a calendar and then cross off the current date. This teaches them the months of the year as well as how to spell them and how a calendar is set up.
- Writing The Date ~ On this page the kids have to write the date in 3 sections. The first is spelling out what day of the week it is, then writing the date in numbers, and finally writing the whole date out. They learn to spell the days of the weeks and months of the year and write the date in 2 different ways.
- Weather Graph ~ Monthly & Daily ~ Each day the kids graph the weather and then we talk about the weather patterns for the month and fill in a yearly weather graph. The kids pick up weather patters, learn what weather is more prominent during certain times of the year and more.
- Temperature Graph ~ Each day the kids have to look at our thermometer and figure out what temperature it is outside and then graph it. This teaches graphing, how to read a thermometer, and helps them understand and pick up on those big temperature differences we experience through out the year.
- How Many Days Have We Been In School ~ This is a page geared more towards my kids who are still working on writing numbers or just need some practice on correct number formation.
So now you have an idea of the different calendar notebook and calendar time activities that we include in our homeschool.
Now it’s your turn to let me know what calendar resources do you use? Leave a comment letting me know.