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What’s Your Personal Favorite Homeschooling Curriculum And Why?

FORUM: A reader asks

I don't really have one favorite. I loosely follow the classical approach, but I've also worked in a lot of Charlotte Mason's ideas, some unit studies, and whatever else I think will work best for each child. I have one child in Kindergarten, one in second grade, and one in 9th grade. Right now here is what I am using: Kindergarten: Explorers Bible study Beginnings 2 Horizons Phonics and Reading K Horizons Math K Christian Kids Explore Earth and Space (science) Lots of library books. Second Grade: Explorers Bible study Beginnings 2 Horizons Phonics and Reading 1 (He struggles with reading, but is catching up.) A Beka Reading for Fun Enrichment Library Horizons Math 2 First Language Lessons for the Well Trained Mind (Grammar, writing) Writing Strands 2 (writing) Story of the World Volume 2 Christian Kids Explore Earth and Space Various library resources. One thing I like to do is make folder books, also known as lap books. You can see samples of some commercially available ones at http://www.handsofachild.com I don't usually buy the kits for them, there are plenty of free on-line resources that can be turned into a folder book. For my 9th grader: Explorer's Bible study "Faith At Work". Apologia Physical Science Teaching Textbooks Algebra 1 Hewitt Lightning Literature Switched On Schoolhouse Health Switched On Schoolhouse State History Rosetta Stone French Essentials of French 1 Wordly Wise

10 comments to What’s Your Personal Favorite Homeschooling Curriculum And Why?

  • Thrice Blessed

    My favorite ‘curriculum’ was English, junior year. My dad agreed to let me read whatever books I wanted as long as I read two a week and wrote a pursuasive/research/review on them. I loved (and still love) reading so this was the best thing since sliced bread. I read fiction, nonfiction, biographies, political, self help, and religious books. Pretty much everything I could get my hands on. I kept a list of everything I read and put the list in my portfolio when I applied to colleges. I also became very good at analytical reading which has come in handy during colege. Other than that I would say all the violin lessons I took because violin is now my major. 🙂

  • violin_d

    We use different curriculae for different subjects. My two favorites are Writing Strands because since the day we started it, my kids LOVE TO WRITE (and they used to hate to write) !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    And Sequential Spelling for my dyslexic son. I swear if I could wear a sandwich board to advertise it I would. He went from not being able to spell anything to being able to spell just about anything. HALLELUJAH!!! And since I sing its praises to anyone who will listen, many people have begun using it with their kiddos without reading issues and it works equally well. Also they love it so much, the kids ask to do their spelling………..THEY ASK FOR SPELLING.
    But the basis of everything we do is CORE KNOWLEDGE books (What Your _____ Grader Needs To Know). I have used these for years and they guide all of our selections relative to content.

  • heartint

    Alpha Omega Lifepac Whatever you call it! It is my ABSOLUTE Favorite!

  • Daddys Girl

    Nothing! Well, that’s not quite true. My older kids are starting to like using various curricula. Mostly we use a curriculum for math.
    Miquon Math is what I’m using with my youngest (3). I love it’s algebraic questions and it’s use of cusinaire rods.
    Singapore Math is being used by four of my kids (4, 6, 7& 9). It has amazing word problomes, way more challenging than in any other math program I know of.
    Teaching Textbooks is what my eldest two (10&12) are using. It’s excellent for independent learners (which they are). It does however have lots and lots of review which my eldest who is a math wiz finds very tideous.
    We’ve used Rosetta Stone a number of times with various languages (Japanes, Italian, Latin Arabic…). It is a great immersion program.
    Real Science 4 Kids is the only science curriculum we’ve used. It has great experiments and the text is good too. We’ve used all their subjects.

  • mom_of_a

    As I looked back over the years nearly all the favorite ones were ones we made ourselves.
    Besides the ones we created, some of our favorite commercial ones have been KONOS, many (but not all) of the K12 courses (4th and 5th grade science and history and 4th to 7th language arts), Cybered (supplemental), Saxon.
    KONOS (K to 8th grade curriclum for all but math and language arts) – Because it is so hands-on. It is a bit of work for Mom because the curriculum is more a list of great activity suggestions than a typical content-oriented curriculum. You have to chase down the library books, online sites, and craft materials, but the ideas are terrific! After you do KONOS for a little while you can easily make your own unit studies because it gets the creative juices going. LOL. My kids learned so much great science and history during the elementary school years by living it. We read from real books (not textbooks – yuck), made all kinds of historical artifacts, had tons of hands on science, art was all over the place. It was great! The the older kids have long since outgrown in, I am about to gear up to use unit studies with my littlest one who is in 1st grade. I cannot wait to share the fun with him!
    K12 (most of the virtuals are using it and many independent homeschoolers as well – K to 12th grade) – We began using K12 with one of my kids because it was online and he LOVES computers. We started simply because it was online, but I was very impressed with most of it. The 4th through 6th science was tons of fun. The content delivery was creative and engaging and the hands-on labs at these levels were tons of fun. The history was also very creative and engaging. They tied art in to the history studies which meant that an art assignment may be to study the art of the culture and era and make a historical artifact. The language arts curriculum was absolutely outstanding. It was challenging yet fun. We were e-notebooking his homeschool adventures through the 4th to 6th grade years of using K12. You can get an idea of how fun it was by looking at them. Go to http://www.virtualhomeschoolgroup.com/co… Just select the guest access on the sign in screen. Then browse down to the section of examples. Most of them there are from the K12 curriculum. K12 will be in the parentheses if it is from that curriculum.
    Cybered (many subjects and levels of science) – Very nicely done computer-delivered courses. I love these! It isn’t a full curriculum but a supplement. The inetractive activities are great too.
    Saxon (K to 12th grade math) – The continuous review bugs some kids, but for me and my crew we need it. I don’t know why, but without continuous review, what is done so easily in a lesson right after it is presented completely vaporizes a few days later. Saxon is designed to include problems from past lessons every day for several weeks so the concepts move to long-term memory. It works for us like no other method does.

  • viewfrom

    Unschooling! It works and anything else is unneccesary.

  • curly

    Math U See for math.
    For science, reading, art, etc we love Five in a Row. I used FIAR with the girls for the younger grades – being able to cuddle up on the couch and read stories and then do our work from the stories. *sigh* I miss those years.
    My 11yr old still uses FIAR but the older books obviously. It’s not quite the same but we still like it.

  • pinkpigl

    We’ve used K12 for five years. We LOVE it. We did switch from their math in Pre-Algebra A into Teaching Textbooks Algebra I – but my DS did K12 math from 1st grade.
    I love how K12 has everything planned out and how broad and deep their scope and sequence is for all the grade levels and courses. I love the dynamic planning and progress tools. My son loves the interaction and mix of both online and offline materials.
    K12 ties History and Art together which is so much fun! Science is challenging and engaging. Music uses great methods like Solfege and Kodaly. Language Arts is incredible and teaches lots of great knowledge from the beginning (we started in LA 1).
    I just can’t say enough good about it! I’m so glad I don’t have to worry about picking and choosing curriculum each year, or having to change all of the time (and wasting money) trying to find what works. Since K12 teaches to all types of learners, and my son is a global learner, it’s very helpful.
    K12 also allows for my son to finish courses at differing speeds and mix and match grade levels. If he finishes one course, say Art (we’re nearly at 50% completion and we started in September), he can just load in the next level and keep going and the only extra it costs us is to get the new materials – the OLS (online school) subscription is already covered.
    I do love Teaching Textbooks also. They’ve been a great fit since DS is 9 and taking Algebra. He can do most of it independently, which is nice.

  • ASD & DYS Mum

    I like Saxon Math. It gives the child at least 10 lessons to catch on to a concept. Then each day the child reviews what he or she has already learned.

  • thatmeli

    Abeka is definitely my favorite!! It’s a challenging curriculum, and provides a great amount of work to be done! I used Alpha Omega Lifepac in 8th grade, and I didn’t like it at all! Abeka is a college-prep curriculum, which is what you should look for in a curriculum. I don’t like it easy, but rather challenging- when you have to study alot and be prepared for the upcoming tests and quizzes.

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