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2012-2013 homeschool curriculum :: our FIAR books by season plan

2012-2013 homeschool curriculum :: our FIAR books by season plan

Here’s the first of several posts as I outline our whole life education plan for 2012-2013.

I love the term whole life education, because this is what we aim to do.  To build up our children in a variety of ways, not simply academically.  While it’s important they deepen knowledge and skills, life is much more than reading, writing and math (or science, or history).

Life is about relationships :: with God, with others, with ourselves.  And so, we move in this direction (more on this later)!

Right now, we have in our home:

  • 3 yr old boy (36 months this week, preschool)
  • 6.5 yr old boy (1st grade)
  • 9.5 yr old girl (4th grade)
  • 13 yr old girl (almost 14!, 9th grade)

I’ve decided each child will have their own curriculum plan, and also to group different ones up for combined learning.  Today, I’ll outline the combo plan for THE BOYS.

We’ve homeschooled for 10 years, but haven’t ever tried Five in a Row {FIAR} curriculum.  After seeing Michelle’s site of awesome ideas and plans, and then realizing we already school this way in the younger years (yes!), we’re adopting FIAR as the basis for the preschooler and 1st grader.

I am SO thrilled! {see all of my FIAR planning resources here}.

{photo credit}

Personally, I’m one who needs to narrow down ideas from the get-go, and that’s just what I did with FIAR.

I pulled from ALL books – Before FIAR (B4FIAR) and Volumes 1-3 and will tailor activities to the levels of the boys.  I organized according to seasonal themes and what might work for us when.

We’re rowing about two books per month since I’m making them fairly chock-full with extras and other books to go-along.

:: :: ::

Here’s Our Five in a Row Plan:

August 2012 – summer, bears, outdoors, fruit

Blueberries for Sal (B4FIAR)

We’re Going on a Bear Hunt (B4FIAR)

September 2012 – where we live, city maps, police theme, monkeys, money/counting

The Red Carpet (B4FIAR)

Caps for Sale (B4FIAR)

October 2012 – apples (this is when we normally make applesauce), pies, fractions, colors, art

How to Make an Apple Pie and See the World (Vol 1)

Harold and the Purple Crayon ((Vol 2)

November 2012 – thanksgiving, cranberries, owls, moon

Cranberry Thanksgiving (Vol 1)

Owl Moon (Vol 2) and Goodnight Moon (B4FIAR)

December 2012 – this month we’re not rowing any books (we’ll finish up Owl Moon/Goodnight Moon) and focus on Advent plans and Christmas celebrations!




Happy New Year!

January 2013 – snow, transportation, winter, city maps, community helpers

Katy and the Big Snow (Vol 1)

The Snowy Day (B4FIAR)

February 2013 – winter, sheep, wool, pioneers, carving, cabin life

Warm as Wool (Vol 3)

Daniel’s Duck (Vol 3)

March 2013 – passover.  we’ll only row one book to match our Passover celebration time, and then take a break for Holy Week/Spring break.

Mrs. Katz and Tush (Vol 2)

April 2013 – big machines!, gardening, rabbits, spring

Mike Mulligan and His Steam Shovel (Vol 1)

The Tale of Peter Rabbit (Vol 2) and The Carrot Seed (B4FIAR)

May 2013 – Asia, ducks, animal families, relationships.  this month we’re focusing on Asian studies as a whole group (all kiddos) as well as wrapping up any other academic work.  So, we’ll row books along that theme!

The Story About Ping (Vol 1)

A Pair of Red Clogs (Vol 1)



Again, I’m really excited about our plans and hope this will be a good fit for the boys.

Subscribe via email and follow along our book reading journey!  I’ll be updating after each book we row…don’t forget to check out my resource and planning page!



This post linked up to iHomeschool Network Blog Hop,  Preschool Corner, and Big Family Friday.


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  • Lori GJuly 30, 2012 - 11:35 am

    I love, love, love FIAR!! I used it for several years and I still have all the books. Such great memories =)ReplyCancel

  • Daniele @ Domestic SerenityJuly 30, 2012 - 12:09 pm

    Lori – I’m excited to start with our boys, and looking forward to making great memories…ReplyCancel

  • Stefanie @ Giggly GirlsJuly 30, 2012 - 12:48 pm

    Look like a fun year. Michele’s site is a wonderful place for inspiration.ReplyCancel

  • NatalieJuly 30, 2012 - 9:31 pm


    Thanks for this post! I’ll be homeschooling our Kindergarten aged daughter next year as well as our two boys. While I won’t be using the FIAR curriculum this year, I do plan to read aloud to her quite a bit as well as have audio books for her to listen to when I am working with the boys. I pinned this post so I can refer to it throughout the year when I am looking for books for her 🙂ReplyCancel

  • JolantheAugust 3, 2012 - 7:51 am

    We have quite a few of those books on our list too ~ can’t wait to see what you are doing!ReplyCancel

  • KristinaAugust 3, 2012 - 1:26 pm

    I look forward to “seeing” your rows : ) Last year I blogged about our FIAR adventures and plan on doing the same this year. Enjoy the B4 books : ) We loved Caps for Sale!!ReplyCancel

  • Stef LaytonAugust 6, 2012 - 2:51 pm

    loving the FRIAR collection! I have to go to the library way too often. =/

    hoping you have a GREAT homeschool year!ReplyCancel

  • […] now, because of several little ones needing Mom’s attention academically, we carefully structured our 9th grader’s work to offer time with Mom and also release her to […]ReplyCancel

  • Mrs. NerdyAugust 7, 2012 - 9:53 am

    We are rowing this year with a 1st and pre-K as well! I love how you planned your months out according to the season. You will love FIAR and your kiddos will too 🙂ReplyCancel

  • […] fact this month, many of my posts have been about plans :: homeschooling plans for the preschooler, my huge and ultimate guide to creating home management notebooks, homeschooling plans for the 9th […]ReplyCancel

  • CarolineAugust 22, 2012 - 9:52 pm

    I love this seasonal/unit study-type plan! We’re doing modified BFIAR for my 3-year-old, and he loves it. Thanks for sharing your outline.ReplyCancel

  • […] month began our combo plan for preschool and first grade using the Five in A Row {FIAR} curriculum.  The idea is to enjoy these books on a somewhat […]ReplyCancel

  • […] second row in this year’s seasonal Five in A Row plan was the wonderfully rhythmic book We’re Going on a Bear Hunt by Michael […]ReplyCancel

  • VeronicaSeptember 17, 2012 - 2:22 pm

    We have just started FIAR volume one. It’s been so much fun. Your plan looks very nice. Since I only bought volume 1 I arranged ours for the seasons too but just from the 1 volume. The nice thing about FIAR is that you can do as much or as little as you want for the day. Somedays we just keep going and others we have too many things going on so we’ll read the book and 1 or 2 activities. So much fun.ReplyCancel

  • […] we’re on track with our literature plan for the year — take a peek to see what books we’re rowing this month.  Come along for the journey, and don’t miss a FIAR post through the […]ReplyCancel

  • […] homeschool… this time of year is a different pace as we catch up on any work (such as our seasonal literature plan for 1st grade and preschool, updates coming next week!)  The girls (9th & 4th) are plugging away at speeches for club […]ReplyCancel

  • […] Pie and See the World was enjoyed so much by both Mom and the boys.  Check out what books we’re rowing this winter 2013 and our other Five in a Row […]ReplyCancel

  • […] following our preschool literature plan for the year has been somewhat consistent, updating here on the blog has been […]ReplyCancel

  • […] year I had a preschooler, 1st and 4th grader and a 9th grader.  In no particular order, here is my top 10 list for […]ReplyCancel

  • NicoleSeptember 14, 2013 - 7:43 am

    I stumbled across your blog from Pinterest and could not be more excited about it! This post n particular. I have a 3 year old and a 6.5 year old this year. I’m just starting to dabble in preschool and want to do a book based type deal with him. I using lightening literature with Josie and a lot of these books fit right in! Yea! Love that you arranged by season. That’s how I plan as well. Excited to keep reading!ReplyCancel

  • Five in a Row for the Busy Homeschool MomOctober 30, 2015 - 6:26 am

    […] a book over two weeks instead of one.  A few years ago I planned our year around two FIAR books per month.  It worked […]ReplyCancel

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  • Monica C.December 13, 2022 - 7:07 am

    Great list, I have a huge age gap with my kiddos so it’s been a while since I’ve done any “rowing”, I came around looking for ideas, love the seasonal order. Thanks! ReplyCancel

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