Before Five In A Row (BFIAR)


Hello all!  I’ve been reading a lot of blogs about homeschooling over the last year and I’m finding that many I read (usually by American homeschooling mamas) use the literacy programme called Five In A Row.  The premise is that you read the same story (usually classic children’s stories) five days in a row, followed by different activities that cover literacy, maths, science etc. Now to buy the book from the website is EXTREMELY pricey (if you live in the U.K.) so I went on Amazon and bought Before Five In A Row  second-hand for a quarter of the price.  I bought many of the listed books from Amazon for 1p and there are tonnes of blogs who allow you to download free lapbook templates for each of the books.

BFIAR is designed for preschool children (approx age 2-4) and I’m using many of the activities with my 3 year old.  You just have to simplify some of the activities.  I will probably do this again next year when she can do all of the activities.

The first book we are studying is Jesse Bear, What Will You Wear? by Nancy White Carlstrom.  It is a very cute book that has a lovely rhyme.  Lady P really enjoys the book.  To start with, I downloaded a Jesse Bear lapbook from Homeschool Share as well as letter of the week pdf to add to the lapbook from Homeschool Share as well.  Awesome resources, by the way, especially for toddlers!  Lady P loved the activities but didn’t want to glue down the items because she wanted to do it again!




The next day my husband did one of the activities in the BFIAR book where you look at the shapes found on one of the pages of Jesse Bear then make stamps out of raw potatoes and print the shapes on paper using paint.  Both girls could do this activity so it was a huge success (I think Baby S’ face says it all)!


I highly recommend this programme of study, especially if you are unsure where to start.  It’s a nice way to study literature with your children.  Even if you are not homeschooling, you can do these fun and exciting literature units in order to help little ones get ready for school!

4 responses »

  1. Nice post. With my first child we just cuddled and read books aloud. That was before I learned about lapbooks, which I am now trying out for the first time with my uoungest, a 5 yo in Kinder. Lapbooks are great, too. I also bought books secondhand and later used the library. There’s a website that lets you read selected children’s classics when you register for free on their site – it’s I found that to be a cheaper alternative to buying books and a time saver from library visits. Have a good day!

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