2017-18 Curriculum

We’re getting dangerously close to the end of the school year, so I guess I should share the curriculum we’ve been using. My usual disclaimer applies…the beginning of the school year was so long ago, I can’t promise that I’ve remembered everything we’ve used all year!

Religion

For Turkey and Bunny

  • God’s Old Testament People

For Ladybug

  • One Hundred Bible Stories and workbook

For Chickadee

  • A Child’s Garden of Bible Stories and workbook

Math

For Turkey and Bunny

  • Math-U-See Geometry

For Ladybug

  • Horizons Math 5

For Chickadee

  • Horizons Math K

Language Arts

For Turkey and Bunny

  • Writing Strands Level Five
  • Wordly Wise 3000, Book Nine
  • Analytical Grammar

For Ladybug

  • Spelling Workout E
  • Handwriting Without Tears Cursive Success Grade Four
  • Wordly Wise 3000, Book Five
  • Writing with Ease Level Four

For Chickadee

  • Sonlight Language Arts K
  • Fun Tales
  • Explode the Code Primers
  • A Reason for Handwriting K

Literature (all with accompanying Memoria Press guides)

For Turkey and Bunny

  • Sir Gawain and the Green Knight
  • Beowolf
  • The Canterbury Tales
  • Henry V

For Ladybug

  • The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe
  • Heidi
  • The Canterbury Tales

History

For Turkey and Bunny

  • The History of the Ancient World

For Ladybug

  • Story of the World volume 1 and supplemental materials

Science

For Turkey and Bunny

  • Apologia Exploring Creation with Biology

For Ladybug

  • Apologia Exploring Creation with Zoology: Land Animals of the Sixth Day

For Chickadee

  • The Berenstain Bears’ Big Book of Science and Nature

Electives

  • Duoligno (Italian, German, and Spanish)
  • The Art of Civilized Conversation
  • A Rulebook for Arguments
  • All About Korea (during the Winter Olympics)

Read-Alouds

  • The Ramona Series
  • The American Girl BeForever series from Kaya through Julie

 

2016-17 Curriculum

I had such good intentions to share this at the beginning of the school year this time, but you know how it goes. As always, I’m hoping this list is fairly complete, but it’s easy to forget resources we used way back in August and September! Anyway, this is at least a pretty decent overview of the materials we’ve used this school year.

Religion

Math

Language Arts

For Turkey and Bunny

For Ladybug

History

Science

For Turkey and Bunny

For Ladybug

Cat in the Hat’s Learning Library (for Chickadee)

Electives

Read-Alouds

Literature (with accompanying Memoria Press study guides where available)

For Fun

2015-16 Curriculum

I get worse and worse about sharing our curriculum every year! Now that we’re almost ready to start the 2016-17 school year (our ninth year of homeschooling!), I thought it was time to share what we used last year, when Turkey and Bunny were in seventh grade and Ladybug was in third. As always, this is a basic list…I’m sure there are things that have been left off, especially since I waited so long to write it down!

Religion

Math

Language Arts

For Turkey and Bunny:

For Ladybug:

History

Science

For Turkey and Bunny

For Ladybug

Electives

Read-Alouds/Literature (all with accompanying Memoria Press study guide)

2014-15 Curriculum

I never did get around to sharing our curriculum for the last school year (sixth grade for Turkey and Bunny and second grade for Ladybug), so before I share what we’re going to be using for the 2015-16 school year in a few weeks, here’s what I remember that we used last year. I may have forgotten some of it by this point, so don’t assume that we had gaps in our education if you don’t see something…it’s probably just my forgetfulness!

Religion

Math

Language Arts

For Turkey and Bunny:

For Ladybug:

History

Science

Electives

Read-Alouds

The book basket selections were so extensive last year, they’re too numerous to even try to list. Let’s just say there were a lot of good books that tied in with our other studies!

2013-14 Curriculum

I just realized that I haven’t yet shared our curriculum for this school year! I assembled it myself again this year, since last year seemed to go pretty well.  Hopefully I haven’t forgotten anything here, but no promises!

Religion

Math

Language Arts

For Turkey and Bunny:

For Ladybug:

History/Geography

Science

Electives

Read-Alouds (Anything we don’t get to will go in the book basket)

Book Basket (This is just a selection of some our book basket options, and some of them might turn into read-alouds)

2012-2013 Curriculum

I’m trying something new this year…I put our curriculum together myself! I needed to find something for Turkey and Bunny’s fourth grade year, and Ladybug’s kindergarten year. I wanted some things they could do together, and some grade-appropriate things, and I also wanted to continue the survey of American History that we began last year. I don’t think I’ll be doing this assembly every year…I just couldn’t find what I was looking for this time around, so I decided to try it myself. Never say never, though…if it goes well, maybe I’ll look into doing it again in the future!

Religion

Math

Language Arts

For Turkey and Bunny:

For Ladybug:

Latin (Only Turkey and Bunny will have formal Latin studies, but Ladybug is welcome to listen along and absorb vocabulary!)

History/Geography–We’re studying the Civil War to the present day. I tried to make sure every decade from then to now was covered either in a history book or a read-aloud.

Science

Electives

Read-Alouds–I’m not sure we’ll get to all of these, but whatever we don’t read out loud will be turned into book basket selections.

Bonus Read-Alouds (a few special titles I specifically wanted to share with Ladybug in her Kindergarten year, in addition to our regular read-alouds.)

Hopefully I didn’t leave any books (or whole subjects!) out. I won’t even try to list all of the book basket titles we’ll be using, but some of the series will include You Wouldn’t Want to…, If You…, Childhood of Famous AmericansWho Was…?, and multiple American Girl series (those focusing on historical, albeit fictional, characters Addy, Samantha, Rebecca, Kit, Molly, and Julie). This list also doesn’t include the books we’ll be using for our Thanksgiving and Christmas units…and those lists are plenty extensive themselves!

Third Grade: Week Eight Wrap-Up

Something that’s very important to constantly pay attention to and evaluate when homeschooling is whether or not your curriculum is still working for you. It can be easy to pick something and think you’re stuck with it long-term, but this isn’t the case. I am not by any means encouraging curriculum-hopping, because I think consistency is important, and if you hop around too much, you may manage to miss important lessons and skills. But you shouldn’t be a slave to your curriculum, either–it’s supposed to work for you, not the other way around.

I’ve had to switch a few things up in the three-plus years I’ve been homeschooling. The first switch came at the end of our first year–Kindergarten–when I realized that our Language Arts program was moving too slowly for Turkey and Bunny, and they needed a more advanced program. I learned a similar lesson with a spelling curriculum we were using last year. I also changed our core curriculum after last year, because we needed something more hands-on than Sonlight offered us.

Now that we’re almost a quarter of the way through third grade, I’ve realized that I need to make a change again. We’ve been using, and liking, Horizons math. I’ve realized lately, though, that the level we’re using isn’t providing enough of a challenge for Turkey and Bunny. Yes, new concepts are being introduced, but they’re mastering them almost immediately. And while Turkey likes math so much that he doesn’t mind doing the same thing over and over, Bunny is bored to tears. She will take forever to complete a lesson, not because she hasn’t learned the material, but because she is so bored with doing the same things.

So, I sat down and evaluated the scope and sequence of Horizons fourth grade math. Frankly, I don’t know why I’ve been so reluctant to do it before. Homeschooling allows a wonderful flexibility in choosing appropriate, challenging materials that children need. Yes, there are things that we haven’t learned yet that they’ll need to know. But, there’s also plenty of opportunity for review at the fourth grade level. So, I made the decision to teach a few more key concepts from the third grade book, and then move ahead to the fourth grade books. At the worst, we discover it’s too advanced, and move back to third grade, and keep the other materials for next year. But, I’m hopeful that this will provide the additional challenge they need–the last thing I want is to give them the impression that school is boring, when one of the big benefits of homeschooling is supposed to be fostering a love of learning!