Local public schools will be in full swing next week. And even though we are homeschooling on a year-round basis and are not on the public school schedule, out of habit we tend to evaluate, make curriculum changes, & refocus during the summer. (Might have something to do with attending the curriculum convention in July too!)
A book was mentioned in a seminar (2 books actually, but I’ve only managed to find the 1st one) at that homeschool convention I attended in July, Discover Your Child’s Learning Style. Words cannot do this book justice. It has been so helpful to me already. I did the profile on myself first & that was big eye-opener. Let’s just say something I viewed as a vice in myself, is actually part of my mental processing & learning style. It seems so obvious now, but I really guilted myself about it for…well…all my life.
As for the children, I have completed 3 of the 4 profiles. I started to work the final profile, on son #2, but he was not in the right frame of mind & we got nowhere. But the words written about my oldest sons dominant learning style could not have been truer. Again, another set of things we viewed as vices and tried wrongly to eradicate in him.
As for M & Q: M scored a 10 out of 10 on the Performer Learning Style & Q scored an 8 out of 10 in the same. So, they don’t just like dressing up as princesses or pretending to be animals (M actually gets on her knees & howls at the moon), but this role-playing is a big part of how they learn.
Can you see how/why this is great information to have?
This year we have made some big changes to our curriculum.
After 4 years of using Horizons Math for my boys & attempting to use it for my oldest girl, we are switching. Actually, I have been waiting patiently for about two years to try Teaching Textbooks. Well, it’s finally out for 4th & 5th grade. The boys tried the online samples and were begging for it! They were begging to do math? Who stole my children & replaced them with math-enjoying aliens?
For my girls, I purchased the manipulatives for Math U See. We bought the Primer & Alpha DVDs & Teacher’s Manuals last year. I wanted to see if it would interest anyone before I became completely financially invested. My youngest loves to watch Mr. Demme. She was asking for the blocks all year, so I decided to give it a try. Neither girl is interested in workbook math. I’ve long suspected that Q knows more than she will let on during a workbook session. She’s been caught several times lately adding things she’s never been “taught” to add. She’s practically doing multiplication. M is paying attention and following in her footsteps.
We’re trying Mystery of History this year, Volume II. We skipped Volume I since we have focused on that part of history for 2-3 yrs now and really need to move on.
Our 2009-2010 Curriculum Summary:
Math: Teaching Textbooks, 4th & 5th grade (boys I & G, respectively) and Math U See Primer & Alpha (girls M & Q, respectively)
History: Mystery of History Vol. II
Science: Creation Geology (pub. by Media Angels) & the In The Hands of a Child complementing project pack and World of Plants (AiG)
Character: Developing Godly Character in Children
Literature Study: Heir of the Forgotten Realm (Tweener Press)
Handwriting: Classical Cursive Book I (the boys)
Critical Thinking: Visual Perceptual Skill Building Book I & Book II (girls)
Latin: Prima Latina (We started this 2 yrs ago, but now I think the boys are ready to do the actual workbooks. Girls love to be involved & recite the prayers & memorize the words too.)
MISC: I am also looking at All About Spelling, various reading & language arts programs, typing, & finding more ways to incorporate fun into our learning & our lives. And just for fun, we are going to do the Hot Diggety Dog lapbook (the semi-annual Freebie) from In the Hands of a Child. I am hoping that this will be a really good experience, full of fun & intrigue, so that we can do more lapbook projects. I love the concept, but I hated doing all the work. At first glance (last year), I thought Pre-made lapbooks were too expensive, but I’m starting to see their value.
Community Service: Another family project this year (and forever) will be in politics. I am in the process of helping to establish 2 groups for young voters (1 for teens, 1 for 18-40). Since my oldest son has had a long desire to be president and his brother has a desire to serve in his brother’s cabinet, I sat them down to see if they would be my helpers in these endeavors. Of course, the girls were anxious to offer their help too. And by the 2012 election, my boys will be 13 & 14 and my girls will be 9 & 11. That makes me want to cry because it seems so far off, but it will be here before I know it.
- To learn about our Spiritual Gifts and how to use them for to the Glory of God.
- To develop Godly & Christ-like character, in our home & in public.
- Hide more of God’s Word in our hearts.
- Learn to be more loving & effective in correcting my children.
- Make personal sacrifices & eliminate wasteful tasks in my life.
About The Students:
- G is a 10yo boy in 5th grade
- I is a 9yo boy in 4th grade
- Q is a 7yo girl in 1st grade
- M is a 5.5yo girl in Kindergarten
Are you delving into new homeschool curriculum this year?
Do you have a favorite, tried & tested, curriculum that you swear by?
Have you even made all of your curriculum decisions yet?
I love learning about new or new-to-me curriculum, so I’d love to hear about the curriculum you use.