So what curriculum are you all using?
With the tons of resources available, finding the perfect fit can be overwhelming, can't it?
I start by knowing what I want the kids to learn over the next few months and then try find a way to get that across. Sometimes it uses curriculum; sometimes it's based on projects we do as a family, like gardening or "visiting a country."
Writing (and how ironic is it that I work as a writer and editor now?) has been the subject area most challenging to me throughout school and the hardest for me to teach. My favorite help was a series called "Writing Strands." It begins with a prewriting book, "Writing Strands 1". This is for little kids and has games and projects to get preschoolers and kindergarteners sharing with words. Later, the young reader/writers learn basic writing skills, organization, descriptive language and creative writing during the first years. The later booklets teach various types of writing, from research to argumentative and explanatory. After completing this set, your kids can hold their own on University level writing assignments.
We are using mostly A Beka with several other things added it to supplement. Looking forward to going to a used book fair to find some new ideas.
I'm doing a hybrid program. It's technically public school, but it's a Charter school. So it's all done at home, but he has an online planner and the school sends us all the curriculum for the school year, we just send it back at the end of the year. We are enrolled with Oregon Connections Academy.
I am interested, though, in that writing program you mentioned, Jules. It's Jacob's most difficult area right now.
Nell, we are looking into a public online school for next year that uses K12 for their curricullum. Do you like doing it that way? My #1 reason for considering it is money. Curriculum costs add up so fast. I figure I can always enroll her and pull her out 2 weeks later if we don't like it.
I really like structure, so having a core curriculum to use is important to me.
This year we we used ACE materials completely. We went through the entire K curriculum and started 1st as well. I really liked it. Material has been good. My only complaint has been that the curriculum for K and the beginning of 1st is designed for Christian schools as well, so it is written as group activities. I just adapted as necessary, but it would be nice if they could adapt their program and send out a different packet to homeschoolers.
Well, we used it for a couple of months when he started Kindergarten. But I had trouble reading the instructions for him and keeping his brother from getting into places he shouldn't be. His little brother had just started becoming mobile and started his 3 month long screaming phase, so we bailed and sent Jacob to kindergarten at a public classroom school. I really LIKED the program, I just couldn't work with Jacob the way he needed it. But now that he can read, I think it will be even less work for me cause he should be mostly self sufficient. Connections Academy uses Calvert curriculum which I've heard great things about. You can get Calvert as a homeschooling curriculum and be completely self standing. As a Connections student, we are technically NOT homeschooling as it is an accredited PUBLIC school that is done at home. I consider us a "hybrid" family. The thing that I really like about Connections is that they do individualized learning plans for each student and periodic reviews and revamp their plan as needed. So if he's struggling in one area, we can review it until it's clear and then move on, and if he's doing really well in an area, we can move him forward as quickly as he's able to.
I have NO idea about K12, but I've heard GREAT things about it from families I know personally (who live in a different state than me).
Stephanie, I just realized you're in WA. My friends who use K12 are near Puget Sound.
I have heard both good and bad things about K12. A great resource for getting reviews on individual curriculum is www.homeschoolreviews.com
I look for core subject curriculum that matches my kids learning style. This year we used about 5 publishers and next year i think we have 6 different ones. I loathe the all inclusive stuff, but that is my preference. I use the scope and sequence for the year they are in and choose what books we will be studying, usually i do that in the spring for the next fall. Then i spend some time finding the best bargains
This fall i will have a 3rd grader, K and a toddler at home.