Monday, January 10, 2011

Presenting (drum roll).....Our Curriculum

By popular demand (ok, two people asked me) here's the post that reveals all my homeschool secrets. Well, not my secrets so much as the curriculum that we're using this semester. But honestly, I give a lot of credit for the success of our homeschool adventure to the curriculum we use. God gets the glory first, my children next and these books third.

I've done some trial and error in the past year to find the right fit for Ella. Some curriculum didn't make it past the first two lessons. But that's part of what makes homeschooling amazing. You can change what doesn't work as soon as you know it doesn't work.

So, here's what Ella's doing this semester:

Bible: Bob Jones Grade 3

Language: Easy Grammar 3, Daily Grams Grade 3, Horizons Spelling 3. Love the Easy Grammar series & Daily Grams. The spelling is a little on the easy side for Ella but she likes the colorful pages and the activities.

Math: Horizons Math 3. Love it! Seriously, it is awesome...but just so you know, it is spiral (which works great for Ella).

Science: Apologia Exploring Creation with Zoology 3, Land Animals of the 6th Day. Great series. The notebooking is at times a little hard for Ella, but the text is fabulous.

Penmanship: Horizons 3. I like that the copywork uses Scripture passages.

Spanish: Switched on Schoolhouse Elementary Spanish. Ella loves being able to work on her own on the computer. She seems to be picking up a lot of vocabulary but there are some of the on-going story elements that bore her.

History: Sonlight Core 3 Intro to American History. This also covers Ella's reading...she has to read everyday and she really likes the books. I have loved this curriculum and we'll be doing it again next year.

Fun stuff: Lifepac Drawing Basics with Thomas Kinkade. It's pretty good. The dvds are very helpful but I think we'll be doing something different for art next year.

And Jack...well, Jack is a little less structured. He's doing pre-k work and these are the best resources I'm using with him:

Leapfrog dvds. He loves them and I'm convinced he learned all his letter sounds from the "Letter Factory."

Teaching Tiles: Math Readiness Center. This one is a little hard to explain. It involves matching, pattern recognition and counting. It has a card with pictures on it and Jack uses the corresponding tiles to either match the card, fill in the pattern or show how many somethings are in the picture.

Backyard Bugs Counters. Don't laugh, he loves to sort, count and stack these little rubber bugs.

Number Puzzle, Board & Pegs. He likes to assemble everything (which he mastered really quickly) and then stack them all like building blocks.

Books. Lots and lots of books. I think if I read Hunches in Bunches one more time...oh, who am I kidding if Jack wants me to read it, I'll read it.

And the best things...a white board and markers. He loves to write his letters, copy simple words and do very basic math. Ella likes to play teacher and give him work assignments.

I have the Hooked on Phonics series, but I haven't cracked the code on how to use it in a way that works for Jack yet. We used the flashcards until he learned all his letter names and sounds, but the books and the transition to reading haven't appealed to him yet.

Later this week (cause I hope you'll come back) I'll share some of my avoid-paying-full-price secrets.

1 comment:

  1. Glad to hear you like Horizons math, I just ordered it on a whim for my 4th grader. I hope he likes it and the spiral portion will be good for him. Stopping by from HHH, have a great day!