Thursday, May 04, 2006

What is on my curriculum list for next year...

It is the time of year where homeschoolers begin to read catalog after catalog, read reviews, search websites, etc. It is time to plan for next year! These are the things on my tentative list for next year. Of course, we all know the disclaimer that any or all of these choices are subject to change at any time!

Math Bob Jones Grade 3
This will be our third year using Bob Jones Math. She loves it, I love it... enough said!

Phonics Explode the Code Books 7 and 8
We have worked through all of the Explode the Code series and will be finishing up with the last two books. I don't think we will move into the Beyond the Code after this. I don't know that Savannah loves this series, but it does the job it needs to do.

Handwriting Handwriting Without Tears Cursive
This was my first homeschool convention purchase. I was so impressed that I bought the entire set. She does love this and finishes the book way too fast. I think I will need to buy two workbooks or improvise something to keep her practicing all year.

History and Bible Winter Promise American Story 1
This program I am still undecided about. In theory, I love it! I love books. I love storybooks. I want to teach with real books, but sometimes my life gets in the way. I seem to start out with good intentions and then never quite get the reading in. So, I am pondering and praying on this selection. It is broken into two parts. One is history and Bible all laid out for you. It uses a few books for a sort of spine and then adds in real books that are scheduled for you. The second part of this is a Language Arts package. It has readers that coincide with the History part. Then it has workbooks like Explode the Code and Wordly Wise. I am thinking I would just purchase the History/Bible. I don't really need a schedule for Explode the Code and I am not sure if I would use Wordly Wise or not. I also would not be using the spelling program they plan for.

Science Apologia Zoology 1
I really like this series. We did the Astronomy this past year. I wish we had done it a little more in depth, but again... that life thing... My friend is supposed to be teaching with this book at co-op this year. So, if all goes as planned... we will do the reading and notebooking at home. Then the projects will be done at co-op.

Reading Pathway Readers Grade 3
We started using Pathway Readers this year. I admit that I am a curriculum junkie and I had bought the 1st and 2nd grade set quite some time ago. I never really took them off the shelf. Savannah is what I call a 1st/2nd grader. If we were to go by her actual calendar age - she would have been in 1st grade this year. She misses the cutoff by 1 month. I say she is in between because she is on level with reading, but ahead in just about everything else. Yet, another very good reason to homeschool. She began the year reading at a beginning 1st grade level. I had tried many things, but nothing seemed to spark her to read. I happened to show her these readers. She sat down and read like 43 pages of the first one all at once. HELLO! Where did that come from? She went on to finish all of the first grade ones by Christmastime. If you are not familiar with these readers... they are about Amish families. They are not colorful, exciting, or any other grand word you want to insert here. However, many of my friends have told me their kids are in love with these books too. We just finished the 1st book of 2nd grade. I expect we will finish the 2nd grade set by fall. I asked her if she wanted to continue with these next year or do the Winter Promise readers. She hasn't decided yet. I need to keep thinking on this one as well. Pathway Readers also have vocabulary/comprehension workbooks that go along with them. So, we could use them for vocab. Still not clear decision here.

Spelling Spelling Power
This will be her first year of formal spelling. I purchased this program for Timmy a LONG time ago. I think he was in 5th grade. It worked well for him, so I plan to use it for her. It is a basic - no nonsense approach to spelling.

The rest of the stuff will just fall into place I guess. I am a big believer that life teaches you science, history, logic, etc. We have not been really big on formal study for anything other than math and reading and she has done really well. I do think it is time to add in a little more structure, though. I am going to be teaching ART at our co-op this year. This means I get to look all over the vendor hall for interesting and enticing art curriculum and ideas. I am really excited about this. I taught science this last year and had so much fun. I would have said I didn't like science before I taught this year. I know I love art, so it should be even more fun.

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