As we wrap up the official year of homeschooling, I am already thinking about next year. I love researching the great curriculum that is out there for us to use! I might be a little bit of a curriculum junkie – which often makes it hard to pick just one thing!
Our Homeschool Method/Approach
I often get asked about our method of homeschool. What approach do we use. When we started, I tried to do school at home. That didn’t work so well. I had heard – and seen- amazing things about Classical Conversations, which uses the classical approach to education.
We did Classical Conversations this year- and we absolutely loved it. I know that this approach does not work for everyone, but I loved how my child grew in knowledge this year, and how the things she learned actually stuck.
Yet, I am a “bad” classical mom – and I add a few other approaches to my method.
We homescool year round. Why? For several reasons:
- I believe learning is a life long process. I have yet to stop learning. I am a student even now. So, I want to instill this type of learning in my children. I want them to be life long learners- and lovers of learning. So, we don’t stop. We do slow down. We do a more “child-led” approach over the summer. I let them pick unit studies that interest them. As soon as the school year is over- we transition into a more play based, child led day.
- Math and Reading Skills need to stay sharp – I struggled with math – and my youngest does too! So, in order to not let these skills go away – we keep working on them. Not always with math books and worksheets- but more often through games like Yahtzee or online math games. We read all summer and fill up our reading logs!
- We Take School Year Sabbaths- Sabbath just means rest. Rest is needed more often than just summer time. We will often have a day or a couple of days where we all just need a break. There might be illness in one of the kids. Also, as we are waiting on an adoption match – we could get a baby at anytime! We want to be flexible to allow learning to happen whenever- and not be held down to August-May.
- There are some things that are better taught June-August. Lets face it. Teaching kids about summer topics, ocean animals, summer olympics- these things work better when it is summer time! I tried teaching Ocean animals in January for years when I was an Early Childhood Teacher. Let me tell you. It isn’t as fun as when you teach that unit in July and can actually go to the ocean!
I love to let my children pick some of their subjects. A language, something in the music or arts category- or any summer unit study – those are picked by them.
So, basically, I am eclectic! Yet, I would mostly say classical.
Our School Year
So, since I shared we homeschool year round, what does that schedule really look like? Well, we technically move up on grades in mid-June. This follows closely with my local school district, since our children still have lots of public school friends – this helps them feel connected to them by switching grades at the same time. We take a break in June, and then start school in July. We usually take a break the first two weeks of August, and then school from mid-August through November. We break for Thanksgiving and then school for 2 weeks in December. Then, we are usually off from mid-December through mid-January. We still read and do some math – but we are not focusing on heavy academics. We school from mid-January through March or April, take a week or two off then, and then push from April-Mid June. There are always occasional days off (although we use some holidays as fun learning days!) and I usually let them choose a field trip for their birthday! However, no matter my plan, we follow God lead in our family – and I watch for signs of needing a break.
Homeschool Curriculum: 3rd Grade
This is just some of the curriculum that we are going to be using alongside Classical Conversations for our daughter this school year. There are multiple links for some because of where you can buy it.
Math:Teaching Texbooks 3rd Grade (This will be our first year using this! We are so excited!)Teaching Textbooks Math 3 Kit
We have used Saxon Math before – and loved it!Saxon Math 3, Home Study Kit
Grammar: Horizons 3rd Grade Set Horizons Phonics & Reading Grade 3 Set
Science: Apologia – Zoology 2 (Swimming Creatures of the Fifth Day) (This is on Sale from May 17-24, 2016!)Exploring Creation with Zoology 2: Swimming Creatures of the Fifth Day Exploring Creation with Zoology 2 Notebooking Journal Exploring Creation with Zoology 2 Junior Notebooking Journal
Spelling: BJU Press: BJU Press Spelling Grade 3 Homeschool Kit (2nd Edition)
Handwriting: A Reason for Handwriting (Transition Book) A Reason For Handwriting: Transition–Student Worktext, Grades 2-3
Bible: We will be using two different curriculums this year. We will start with Who Is God by Apologia ( Who is God? What We Believe, Volume 1 Who is God? Coloring Book Who Is God? Junior Notebooking Journal) When we are done with this study we will be doing “To Every Nation” – a study on Missionaries by Kim over at Not Consumed!
We will also use Unit Studies from the Build Your Bundle throughout our year for possible Art, Foreign Language and Health!
Homeschool Curriculum: 7th Grade
We are still making a final decision on Homeschooling our 7th grader. These are the things we have picked out for him should we decide to do this:
Math: Teaching Textbooks Math 7 Teaching Textbooks: Math 7 Kit (Windows & Macintosh)
Grammar: The Lost Tools of Writing – Level 1. We will also be reading the following books:
The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe
Carry On, My Bowditch
Number the Stars
Amos Fortune, Free Man
The Secret Garden
The Door in the Wall
A Gathering of Days
Crispin: The Cross of Lead
The Bronze Bow
Social Studies: From Adam to Us From Adam to Us–Curriculum Package
Spelling: He is behind in Spelling due – so we are going to go back and do 3rd grade spelling with him.
Typing: There is a great resource in the Build Your Bundle that he is going to use. This is highly important since he struggles with writing since he has Asperger’s Syndrome
Bible: He will do the same Bible, in his age range, as his sister.
WHEW! That excites me and makes me tired all at the same time! We are super excited about this journey and are thankful that God has entrusted us with our kiddos!
Chime in and tell me about the curriculum you have chosen for this school year!
Worshiping With My Life,