My Father's World Kindergarten: Grid-Format Lesson Plans

As anyone who's heard me "talk homeschool" over the past year knows, I am a huge fan of the My Father's World (MFW) curriculum. Using it beginning with the 2009-2010 school year got us out of the "curriculum wilderness" in which we had wandered for our first three years of homeschooling, and we fully intend to continue with it long-term, probably even through high school.

I actually grieve the fact, though, that Rachel and Abigail did not get to use the MFW kindergarten and first grade programs. Knowing what I know now, I realize our journey through those earliest years of formal education would have been so much smoother (and more fun!) with MFW than with the hodge-podge of materials we ended up using - and I believe the girls would have had an easier time mastering foundational phonics and math skills, too.

Thankfully, God provided for their learning even as we wandered, and I now feel confident in the depth and breadth of knowledge and understanding the MFW program will offer us from now on. And - even though the girls are now eight and nine - I will actually get to use the MFW kindergarten program, My Father's World from A to Z (and probably first grade as well)...with my daycare children.

N. turned four in April, and Anna will be four in September, and I will start MFW K with them when they return to Teachers' Tots at the end of August. I'm not one to push early academics, but Anna and N. are quite ready for virtually everything contained in MFW K. And - as I do with every curriculum item we've ever used - I'll simply make modifications (primarily with the handwriting piece in this case) as necessary. I'm excited because I know they're going to love it and learn a great deal - and I know I'm going to enjoy teaching from it.

Now, if I had to name one weakness I've seen in MFW, it's the fact that - unlike every MFW core beginning in second grade and carrying all the way through high school - the kindergarten and first grade teachers' manuals do not include weekly lesson plan grids. The grid format in all the later years - which look similar to this sample from MFW Exploring Countries and Cultures, the core Rachel and Abigail will use for 2010-2011 - is a wonderful component of the manuals, enabling a busy mom to see at a glance what needs to be covered in a week and showing how all the parts of the program work together.

David Hazell, who - along with his wife, Marie - is the gifted creator of MFW, has told me personally that MFW will (within the next two or three years) create grids for kindergarten and first grade; they are wisely focusing now on completing the high school program and can only do so much at a time. But, of course, Anna and N. are ready now and - as wonderful as the MFW K content is - I knew I'd have a hard time accessing and successfully using it all relying on the manual as-is. And so I decided to create my own grids, modeled after the other MFW charts, in order to facilitate my use of the program.

To do so, I relied a great deal on a grid format created by another homeschooler, whom I know from a yahoo! group only as "Julianna's mom." But Julianna's Kindergarten charts were made in Excel, and I found them difficult to read and use. So I decided to convert them to Word, a format with which I am much more comfortable.

And I actually made two versions of the charts: one that utilizes Marie Hazell's original vision for the program, in which each of the 26 main units is six days long, and another in which each unit is just five days long. The latter is meant to accommodate my particular teaching situation with the daycare children, but I believe others might want to consider five-days units as well.

You can see thumbnail views of one week's grid for each version here. I cannot provide downloads because, unfortunately, some people might choose to try using the grids without actually purchasing the curriculum from MFW...and I love MFW too much to jeopardize the company in any way.



However, if you are interested in creating your own grid from your purchased copy of the MFW K curriculum, please email me. I'd be happy to provide you with one blank copy of my grid, which you could then duplicate and fill in for yourself.


Lisa said...

Wow, your grids are impressive and I too missed having them in K & 1st. I created my own for K but it's not nearly as nice as yours! we began MFW 1st toward the end of last school year but I haven't gotten around to making a chart for it yet. I should be doing that before we start school again :)

Thanks for sharing, these are wonderful and I'm sure many others will use them!

Monica said...

Your lessons plans look great. I too didn't start out with MFW for K or 1st. I pulled together a mix-n-match of others and wish I hadn't. I can't wait to start Adventures.

Bridgett said...

You Rock! Thank you for the grids and stopping by my blog. This is our first year of kindergarten. I started last week b/c we have a baby coming Sept.1. so i'm hoping to have 6-8weeks done so we can take two weeks off when the baby comes. Thanks again for the help. :)

Kate @ Bliss and That said...

Thanks for the visit and advice! :) It's so, so nice of you to put these grids on here for all to benefit from! I don't yet have my curriculum for MFW-K (soon!!), but I'll be sure to come back and utilize these when the time comes to finalize and gather everything. It's nice to "meet" you and blessings on your homeschool year!

Candi said...

Thank you SO much for doing this, it will surely bless our family!

Sarah Zhao said...

Dear Tina,
Thank you so much for creating the kindergarten curriculum grid. I received my copy of MFW kindergarten curriculum a few weeks ago. However, this is the 1st time I try homeschooling, I read the teacher's manual over and over, still do not know how to start it yet. May you send me a copy of your grids for weekly kindergarten plans so that I may know how to start?
English is my second language. I try to see whether or not I can buy a CD having all the required songs and phonics also. I am not good at singing songs and I need to work on my own phonics also. I already subscribe your webblog. My email address is flsarahzhao@gmail.com. I really want my children growing up knowing the Lord, not being preoccupied with an godless world view.

Thanks so much for your help.


Sarah Zhao

Anonymous said...


I just purchased MFW (original edition) from a seller on Amazon and this version does not come with the grid style lesson plans. I, too, am overwhelmed with putting all of this down onto a grid format, along with some other books I'd like to use as supplements. Would you be willing to e-mail me your lesson plans? I'm trying to fight off discouragement here, as I'd like to start this process sooner than later.
Thank you for your consideration.
~Andrea paymeplz@sbcglobal.net

Christina said...

I am starting the MFW K program next year and I would be interested in your lesson plan grids. You can email me at babyfrogs11@aol.com
Thank you!

Christina said...

I am starting the MFW K program next year and I would be interested in your lesson plan grids. You can email me at babyfrogs11@aol.com
Thank you!

Suzanne said...

I found your blog in my search to organize the MFW K kit I just got! You have some wonderful ideas. That you so much!! But I am still feeling overwhelmed and have yet to start. My kit is new (April 2013) and it had NOlesson plan grid. Only a plan for each day which is usually 2 pages! The manual is very confusing and I am trying to simplify before we begin...and I am frustrated that my kids are having to wait just because I'm not smart enough to figure it out! :( I I f you still have the blank template for your planners would soooo appreciate it! My email is sparke1216@gmail.com. Many blessings to you! Suzanne

joni nichols said...

I can't email you through your link because I don't use the email generated through my computer, and it makes me jump through that hoop before I can access your email address!

I just ordered my MFW and am so glad to find your blog I could CRY! The grid is SANITY! thank you!!!!!!

will you email me one--not the blank, but the one you created! thanks!!


Alicia said...

I would love to recieve a blank copy of the grid lesson plan that you created. I plan to start using MFW Kindergarten with my son in the fall. I am so excited to get started and so excited to have found your blog. My email address is aoffhaus226@gmail.com. Thank you so much!!!!!

Dana said...

Could you please email me these lesson plan grids? I just ordered my dd the ECC and found an older, used TM for Kindergarten for my ds. Boy, do I need help! ;).

Thank you!!!

Tina Hollenbeck said...

Dana - Please email me (see the link in the sidebar). ~ Tina

jancity73 said...

First I wanted to thank u for sharing your knowledge. I as well am in need of the original grid I am new to hm, not an organizer n english is my second language. I want to thank u for your time. My email is jancity73 @hotmail

Anonymous said...


I was wondering if I could get a copy of your grid? I have the MFW Kindergarten curriculum and I think it would help get me organized!
Thank you!

Tina Hollenbeck said...

Tia - I can do that if you will provide me with an email address.

Kristen Troup said...

I am very interested in your 6 day grid plan. I just received MFW God's Creation A-Z. I was very confused as it was not as user friendly as I had anticipated. Would you also mind sending me a completely one so that I may have a guide to follow for the further weeks? I truly appreciate your time and consideration. I speak for all of the new to homeschooling moms who are questioning and overwhelmed when I say thank you so much for sharing.
Kristen Troup

Kristen Troup said...

Whoops. Forgot to include email. firersqmedic911 (at) gmail (dot) com

Amy said...

I would love to have a grid also! Starting in a few weeks here :). Wamyfamily@hotmail.com

Princess Jessica said...

I know this is SO old, but I just ordered a used MFW K curriculum and am just about losing my mind jumping around in the teacher's manual--I would SO love one of your grids please!!! I chose it because I LOVE their book selections and it is covering everything I want to cover this year, but it is darn near impossible for this sleep-deprived mama to implement without better organization. Your contact email isn't listed on the profile, but I really, really need a 5-day grid system for this curriculum, so if you happen to see this, could you send one my way at princessforjesus@gmail.com? Thank you!

Faith said...

If this blog is still active, I would love to have a copy of the five day grid please! Email is walkwithmebyfaith af gmail dot com. Thanks!

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