« Worshipping in Spirit and in Truth (The United Tour) | Main | Love Letter »

April 05, 2009

Comments

Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

Tracy

I am a mother of 6...2 of them are adopted but I forget which ones. :) I have been home schooling for 17 years now and we will graduate our 3 child this May.

We have used a lot of different curriculum over the years but I wanted to second what others have said about Apologia science and The Mystery of History. I love both of these curriculums and have found that they work great with kids of all different learning styles.

I pray that God will bless your home school journey as He has blessed ours.

erin

well i'm not a home school mom, but i was a "homeschooler." i have to admit i did not like the school work or being home schooled, but now that i'm in college i can see it was worth it. i did the Abeka video program, and it was not east, but i really do think it is the best out there. i'm in college and so far i have a 4.0 GPA and college has not been nearly as hard as i expected. oh, also i started school about 4 years after finishing high school. Abeka Academy home school program is very good!

Judy Wnuk

We have tried a number of things in our 14+ years of homeschooling, but because I am entirely sold on a literature-based approach to learning, I've found Sonlight Curriculum (http://www.sonlight.com) to be the best choice for us. The ability to share History/Geography/Literature studies with a range of ages ... the "timelessness" of the materials (i.e. I don't have to buy them new for each upcoming student) ... the awesome discussions the literature generates ... plus much more, really makes this a curriculum worth checking out.

There's so much out there, so many choices to make ... so it might be worth the time and effort to consider how your student learns (i.e. what works and what doesn't) and how you teach best ... and then seek out materials with which you both can excel. You may find one of my blog articles on Choosing Curriculum (http://www.homeschoolqa.com/2009/03/choosing-curriculum.html) to be helpful as well.

I applaud you for your commitment to homeschooling and your desire to find what is best for your student. I'm confident that your research will lead you to the very best for your family!

Blessings ...
~Judy
http://www.homeschoolqa.com/

maryanne

Someone else mentioned Apologia Science!! Check it out at Apologia.com. I wish I'd started out with this one. Certainly takes you through the creation of our magnificent world by the hands of a wonderful Creator and will give you that Biblical view you desire. The books are so beautiful and interesting with exciting, at-home experiments. Def. worth looking into...MaryAnne in NC

Deb

There are some great choices mentioned here. I have to agree with those who recommend 5 in a Row (http://www.fiveinarow.com/), Math-u-see, My Father’s World and Handwriting without Tears.

We have loved Christian Cottage Schools curriculum which comes in 4 volumes and can be used at primary, elementary, intermediate and advanced levels and covers science and history. Volume 1 is called In the Beginning, God; V2 is For God So Loved the World; V 3 is God Bless America and V 4 is Blessed to be a Blessing. http://www.christiancottage.com/units.html

There used to be a catalog called the Elijah Company. What I loved the most about it was the articles on homeschooling: types of learners, types of curriculum for different learners. I can’t find a link for it, although when I Google it, I find this, a page filled with very timely advice! http://www.homeschoolmarketplace.com/choosing/index.html

We have been using a writing program that we all love, and by all, I mean my husband, my sons and myself. It is called Write with the Best by Jill Dixon. Really, really love it! You can get the first two chapters as a free download at: http://www.edudps.com/free-downloads.html We also used the Concise Learning Styles Assessment by this company, which helped me know how best to approach teaching each of my sons. Knowing that one scores very low on being an auditory processor has removed a tremendous amount of stress in my life and his, as I now know the best way for him to learn is through kinesthetic and visual avenues.

I LOVE getting the new edition of Rainbow Resource gigantic catalogue every year (http://www.rainbowresource.com)! Great prices, free shipping on orders over $150 and over 1000 pages of products. We have found so many wonderful products to use in addition to subject curriculum. Our favorite this year is Secrets of the World Changers, which we are using with a small group of teen aged boys. Not time for Cole to use it, but for other Moms here who are teaching older kids, I recommend it!

What a joy to think back to those early homeschooling years, and to remember all those days of sharing the adventure of learning together! We are now homeschooling high school, which means far more independent learning and far fewer of those days cuddled up reading. I am so deeply grateful for all the years I have had homeschooling with my sons. I have many memories stored up in my heart as treasures from those years!

Claudine T - in MD

VERITAS HISTORY OR TAPESTRY OF GRACE ARE BOTH GREAT FOR HISTORY. I'M MORE FAMILIAR W/ VERITAS. WE ALL LIKED KNOWING WE'D COVER THE ENTIRE HISTORY TIMELINE TWICE IF WE CONT'D THRU 12TH. IT CORRESPONDS AS WELL TO BIBLICAL HISTORY. ONCE THEY GET THRU ROUND #1 (USUALLY 6TH) THEY START OMNIBUS. THIS IS (TO ME) REALLY INTENSE. I DIDN'T DO EVERY SINGLE THING. WHAT I ENJOYED MOST WAS THE CHAPTERS ON BOOKS/CHARACTERS OF THE BIBLE. SOME OF THE READINGS WE DO NOT FIND APPROPRIATE FOR ANY BELIEVER TO READ (OUR PERS'L OPINION). WE SKIPPED THAT. YOU COULD ALSO JUST USE THE HISTORY CARDS OVER AGAIN FROM 1ST-6TH GRADE, ADDING WRITING ASSIGNMENTS AND RESEARCH WORK YOURSELF (DID THAT THIS YEAR, MUCH BETTER!). MY KIDS ALL LOVE TO READ.

KEEP STICKING TO THE BASICS - READING, WRITING, ARITHMETIC.

THEY CAN READ @ SCIENCE AND HISTORY, DOING EXPERIMENTS AND SUCH AS DESIRED (APOLOGIA AND ANSWERS IN GENESIS HAVE GREAT STUFF)

HANDWRITING WE LIKED ABEKA. THEY WERE THOROUGH AND OFTEN INCLUDED BIBLE VERSES. REALLY I JUST LIKE THE BOOKS. I USUALLY HAD THEM DO THE BARE MINIMUM OF COPYING WHAT THE BOOK HAD AND THEN I'D USE ALL OF THE "EMPTY PAGES" TO PLACE BIBLE VERSES THAT WERE "SPEAKING TO A NEED" FOR THAT WEEK. I'D ALSO USE IT TO REINFORCE TEACHING ADDRESSES, DAYS OF THE WEEK, NAMES OF BIBLE CHARACTERS OR MISSIONARIES, ETC

I HAVE A VERY DEAR FRIEND IN HER 60S WHO HAS TAUGHT IN PUBLIC SCHOOL, TUTORED FOR OVER 20 YRS (INCLUDING KOREAN KIDS WHOSE 2ND LANG IS ENG) AND HOMESCHOOLED HER 3 GROWN SONS THRU GRADUATION. THEY'RE ALL OUT OF COLLEGE. ALL RECEIVED MULTIPLE HONORS. ALL LOVE THE LORD. THE YOUNGEST IS ACTUALLY RUNNING AN ORPHANAGE IN CAMBODIA THAT IS REALLY PRIMITIVE, PLUS HE'S NOW THE PASTOR THERE. ANYWAY, I SAY ALL OF THIS NOT TO BOAST FOR HER SAKE BUT...

SHE HAS REPEATEDLY TOLD ME "SCHOOL BY THE SPIRIT." THE LORD ACTUALLY TOLD HER TO TRUST HIM, FORGET THE LESSON PLANS, AND LET HIS SPIRIT BE HER GUIDE TO TEACH THEM.

SHE REPEATS: READING, WRITING, ARITHMETIC. WHEN ALL OF THE BASICS ARE SOLID, EVERYTHING ELSE (NEEDFUL) FALLS INTO PLACE. THE JOY OF HOMESCHOOLING IS (IN PART) BEING ABLE TO HONE IN GIFTED AREAS/INTERESTS WHILE ALLOWING TIME TO WORK ON CHALLENGES IN ANY OF THE BASICS.

LET THE HOLY SPIRIT LEAD IT ALL. YOUR KIDS ARE SENSITIVE TO THE HOLY SPIRIT AS WELL -- IT'S OBVIOUS FROM THEIR COMMENTS AND QUESTIONS. THE HEART IS THE KEY.

FINALLY (SORRY) GEOGRAPHY - THERE ARE GREAT MAPS ONLINE WHERE YOU CAN CHALLENGE YOURSELF TO CLICK ON THE NAMES OF THE COUNTRIES FOR VARIOUS CONTINENTS. WE'VE ALSO USED (B/C THE KIDS LEARNED WELL TO MUSIC) GEOGRAPHY SONGS BY AUDIOMEMORY.COM -- THEY KNOW THEIR GEOGRAPHY! VERITAS ALSO INCLUDES CDS W/ THEIR CURRICULUM -- EA HAS A HISTORY SONG SO THEY REMEMBER DATES AND FACTS BY LEARNING A SIMPLE SONG.

Thanks for opening your heart, sharing the ashes, AND the beauty (even that which is not yet realized).

The Lord bless and keep you - claudine

Keri

For Math check out Singapore Math.

Shar

For what it's worth...Math-U-See and Apologia Science are have worked wonderfully for our family (16, 13, 10) over the last several years. We have also used Mystery of History but have really enjoyed TruthQuest History for the last two years with our elementary children. www.TruthQuestHistory.com
Have also heard many good things about The Story of the World (Susan Wise Bauer) history curriculum. We've used it in our TruthQuest program.
So many wonderful programs out there. Don't be afraid to try something new and if it doesn't work for you and/or your family STOP, SELL IT, and try something different. Ebay has been a wonderful resource! I have been encouraged by the other comments and suggestions. Plan on giving one or two a look-see myself. ;)
Bless you, Kerri...praying for you and your family.

Ami

My friend shot me an email and sent me to your blog. I am not a traditional kind of homeschooler. :) I grew up on Abeka and blehhhh.... - it knocked the love to learn right out of me. I knew I had to find something else to use with my own children (not workbook/textbook based curriculum!).

A few things...
1. If it isn't broke, don't fix it. If Saxon is working, I would probably just stick with it. Having said that, we LOVE Righstart Math. I would love to actually sit down with you and talk about that. If you have any questions, feel free to email me.
2. You don't need science and history in elementary school. I would simply follow the interests of your son. This might be easier said than done. It might cause you to break out in cold sweats at the thought! We used literature-based unit studies (Five in a Row and Homeschool Share) for preschool and K. This past year we used some lit. based studies, but I followed my son's interests, too. It has been a GREAT year. They learn and RETAIN more when they are learning about what they WANT to learn about. :) We have learned about animals all over the world this year (just by following my son's interest). He has already told me what he wants to learn about next year. :)

My blog is here:
http://www.homeschoolblogger.com/walkingbytheway

You can see various projects we've done this year. We do lapbooks and notebooks. They are on the right sidebar (labeled first grade and K).

I have a few posts on Rightstart Math, too.

For handwriting, we use and LOVE Handwriting Without Tears, but we started in PK. I'm not sure where I would begin (what program) with a 2nd grader.

Also, I run the Homeschool Share website. Everything you find there is FREE. Lots of moms have inspired a love for learning in their kids by using literature based unit studies.

Like I said, I would love to sit down and chat over coffee, but I don't think that's possible. However, if you have any questions, I am happy to answer!

Terri

For a biblical structure (the lesson plans all stem from being centered around the Bible) I suggest My Father's World. I love the way the Bible is the center of all, just as we are supposed to live.

wendi

Okay, admittedly, I'm chiming in late here, but just stumbled upon your blog through the Together for Adoption website. We have homeschooled this past year (my kids are also 1st grade and below)and have been successful in math and reading. I, too, have struggled with how to add in the extras: science, social studies, history, art, music, etc. Recently, I was introduced to a homeschool program that is FANTASTIC and I think will be the answer for us in how to make it work long term - especially, as I will be teaching different ages all at once, and all ages do the same work -yay! It is called Classical Conversations (or CC) and you can find out more at www.classicalconversations.com . They are spreading all over the country. For instance, our nearest campus (which only meets once per week and you do the rest at home) used to be 30 min away, now another campus is opening 10-15 min away - yay! CC is a great way to implement a Classical Christian education into just about any lifestyle and is not cumbersome or intrusive, as ALL THE PLANNING IS DONE FOR YOU, and there is built in accountability. I highly recommend giving it a gander...it's very adaptable to most any family. Hope this helps you in your journey to find a solution for your family's education.

Sara

Hi Kerry,

I just posted a VERY late comment to this. I got the message that it was posted, but I do not see it. Do you see it or did you get it?

sara

Kathryn Starkeky

Hi Kerry, just scrolling thru your website and came upon this. Are you still homeschooling? I am a local homeschool evaluator and all the above comments are right on. I work under Patti Stoudt who is a christian homeschooling mom, evaluator, and Bloomsburg University professor. She has over 16 years of experience in homeschooling and is a tremendous resource. You can google her or contact me if you'd like more info.

The comments to this entry are closed.