Researching Homeschool Curriculum

If I can manage to put aside my fear that Caleb will fight me over every assignment and not be an eager learner, I am giddy with excitement about homeschooling! Looking through all the possibilities for curriculum isn’t daunting. There are so many wonderful books and methods for teaching. It makes me hope that at least one of my kids will request to be homeschooled up through graduating high school.

I’ve tried to whittle the choices down and hope that I can get some feedback. I first started off with the subjects listed in the California Department of Education’s core standards.

Reading: The Ordinary Parent’s Guide to Teaching Reading
I’ve already got this so I’ll try it again. But I’ve tried teaching Caleb to read with this book at least half a dozen times unsuccessfully, so I’m prepared to try something else.

I plan to concentrate on having him do more reading on his own since he is a very slow reader. We got them the entire Magic Tree House series set for Christmas so that will come in handy.

Writing: First Language Lesson for the Well-trained Mind
I just love Susan Wise Bauer and figure this has to be good.

Speach: I plan to have him prepare a short chapter summary from a Magic Tree House book and present in front of Shane. I think this will be a good way to get Shane involved also. I think I’ll have him do this two times a week to start out and see how it goes.

Math: Right Start Math Level B
I already have Level A, which I will start Ana on. I’m not sold on this though, so I will be interested to see how Caleb does with this.

History: The Story of the World: Ancient Times, activity book and tests and answer key
Susan Wise Bauer again. I’ve actually read this book myself and I liked it very much. I’m excited to read it again with Caleb and have someone to discuss it with :)

Geography: Cantering the Country, Brain Box USA, and 50 States Book and Magnetic Puzzle Map
We’ll be concentrating the USA. I want to keep it simple and do something I know he will be interested in. I plan to order travel guides from states so he will get things in the mail and hopefully get excited about it.

Science: Exploring Creation with Human Anatomy and Physiology and journal
I think Shane and I might be more excited about this than Caleb will be, so I’m prepared to put it on the side until later if he’s not interested.

Natural Science: Habitat series Lapbook
I think Caleb will really enjoy this! I will let him choose which habitat he wants to study.

Art: I have no idea, which I find strange since I’m a crafty girl. My mom said she has some small books on famous artists, so maybe I will just read those to him. I’m not too concerned with this subject right now. I’ll incorporate some art projects when I think he’s getting burnt out but I don’t have anything specific planned right now.

Religion: Egermeier’s Bible Story Book
This looks great! I love that the stories are short and include questions and answers in the back of the book.

I’m also waiting on catalogs from Sonlight and Apologia. So excited!

How will I manage to teach all this? I have no idea. I haven’t worked out a schedule but I’m thinking that I can alternate science, natural science and geography. Perhaps concentrate on each one for a week. Lots of possibilities!

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  1. Johanna says

    It looks good, but I would just caution you to be willing to put some aside if it ends up being too much. The nice thing about homeschooling is that if you guys are rocking the science, do a lot of science. Then switch to focusing on history. You do not have to block 30 minutes for each subject every day. But you already mentioned that several times, so I’m pretty sure that won’t be an issue.

    On the RightStart Math…I love it, but I discovered that it isn’t for every learner. I think that no matter what type of learner a child is, he will benefit from the first two, if not three, of these levels. I did A-C with both Aaron and Ethan. It was PERFECT for Ethan – just the way he learns. But Aaron really, really struggled with it. We actually spent well over a year on C because it was so hard for him to master concepts with this method. I switched him to a more workbook style math (Abeka), and he is doing much, much better. I don’t regret pushing him through those three levels, but it was hard work for us both. On days that it was just too much for him, we payed some of the math games instead of doing a full lesson. That helped him be willing to come back to it. We also frequently did 2 or 3 lessons in one day and then didn’t do a lesson at all for a couple of days.

    Also, I love Egermeier’s! I have gone through it with both the older two and will go through it with Drew next year.

    You will do great, Marie!

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