BFIAR – Planning Our Second Row

I’ve been considering the specifics of a second rowing of the BFIAR books.  I want to have everything basically ready to use in September, so I’m starting my planning early.  I’ve written about how I plan our two rows here.  This post is really me thinking out loud, concentrating solely on our second row.  Our second row will be very different from the first – more academic with far more learning goals.  The goals will change each week but will fit loosely under the following subheadings:

  1. Narration- make your own book (and illustrate it afterwards)
  2. Using resources from Homeschool Creations.  I intend to use Jolanthe’s printables which link to the book in question.  I’ll put them in page protectors so the girls can share and practice their skills again and again without the need for copious copying.
  3. Our Country Road has some nice alphabet printables which I may use with B2
  4. I have many poetry resources which I will call on to improve and increase vocabulary and fluency
  5. I will use selections from the BFIAR curriculum
  1. Jolanthe also includes maths in her printables
  2. I will look for opportunities within each book to teach shapes, numbers, measurements and the like
  3. Although I have the math-u-see primer I will be aiming for a more hands on approach with my younger two this year.
  4. Each book I will photocopy the cover and cut into numbered strips for the little ones to put together as a numerical puzzle.  It will be numbered with whichever set of numbers we are concentrating on at that time
  5. I will endeavour to teach the little ones some sort of maths each time we venture into the kitchen
  6. I will also use the BFIAR guide for suggestions
  1. We will learn all about animal classification – once again I will be using Jolanthe’s BFIAR classification cards and file folder game
  2. I will be using this excellent site to learn more about each animal we meet in the book
  3. We will do lots of baking, concentrating this year on healthy cooking
  4. They will continue to have their lab time (Young Scientists at Play) once a week.  Heaven help me if I ever cancelled this, they would not be happy!  I don’t know whether I will link their science to the book or go with a theme.  We’ll see!
  5. Health and hygiene mini units
  6. And I will, of course, be guided by the suggestions in the BFIAR curriculum book
  • ART
  1. They will Illustrate their own homemade book, containing their narrations
  2. I print off lots of colouring in sheets
  3. We will be looking at and copying the techniques used by the books illustrator
  4. They will continue with their art time (Young Artists at Play) once a week
  5. And we will use the BFIAR manual for ideas
  1. Homeschool Creations has a wonderful set of ABC Bible memory verses which I will down load and have the littles learn
  2. I will focus on a particular living skill I’d like them to learn
  3. I’d like them to help me to design a quilt patch  for each book we rerow which I will attempt to make into a BFIAR memory quilt for each of them
  4. One of my goals for the little ones is for them to really know their way around a map of the world

In the fashion of the FIAR curriculum I am going to aim to have one subject per day.  I have been preparing them and the older children for this over the past few months, having a different activity theme each day.  Transition to the FIAR way of doing things should be effortless!  We will do almost all of our BFIAR work whilst the older children are doing their independent study for 1 1/2 hours each morning.

I will add to this post if I think of anything else in the next couple of months, so don’t be surprised if it changes!


  1. I love how you’ve broken it all down!

    You might want to add a sprinkling of free printables from Confessions of a Homeschooler,,, and just to keep it from becoming too same-y. I’ve found the (estimated one zillion) playdough mats for every possible theme from Twinkl and Sparklebox particularly useful.

    1. Sorry Lisa, that was rather presumptuous of me, assuming everyone knew – I apologise!
      FIAR stands for Five in a Row and is a curriculum where by you read the same book five days in a row (hence the term ‘rowing’) and do activities linked to it. BFIAR stands for Before Five in a Row and is the same curriculum but for 2-4 year olds.
      HTH and sorry again!!

  2. I think posts where people are thinking through their thought process are fascinating. Especially ones like this one. You’ve got a great plan set up for your next year with the littles. I’m gonna enjoy seeing it come to fruition.

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