Merrill Homeschool: 2015-16 Curriculum Choices

Sunday, April 19

I mentioned in my last post that I have ordered our kindergarten curriculum and am currently in a kind of in-between phase. I don't want to start using it until we are "official" but it also calls to me from the shelf, just begging me to dive in. I have been asked on occasion what we will be using, and it is hard for m to give an answer because I have chosen to go with a pieced together collection instead of a boxed curriculum. One of the benefits of having done learning activities with Aiden for a few years already is that by now I am pretty comfortable with what our general style is. Not that I can put it into words... but at very least I can get a sense of whether different options would work for us. I have also been reading a lot about the Charlotte Mason approach to education, and so that was another thing that I kind of looked for as I compared the endless options out there.

Now, before I share what I have chosen, I will ask that you refrain from judging me for ordering first grade curriculum in many cases. I feel like I have to defend myself when I share that, because my goal is NOT to push Aiden to learn faster. When I looked into the choices for some of these programs, I looked at placement tests and considered overall value (we are a single-income family, so that is important) and in many cases I chose to order the year that would fit where we are and give us lots of room to work through things. I imagine some of these will take us longer than a year to work through, especially because a big part of kindergarten will still be play-based and interest-driven. I love that homeschool means being able to let kids work at their own pace, but they still label things by grade in many cases and more than once I have been criticized for moving too fast with Aiden. This is what works for our family, and I am excited to be the one who gets to teach my son and follow his lead in many areas. 

So anyway, here is what we will be using:

Math: Saxon Math 1 (home study kit)
Reading: Explode the Code Book 1 (teacher guide/workbook)
Writing: Handwriting Without Tears 1st Grade (teacher guide/workbook/journal) and Draw Write Now
Science: Apologia Exploring Creation with Astronomy (textbook/junior notebooking journal)
Social Studies: The Story of the World Book One (text and activity book)
Nature Studies: The Nature Connection (workbook)
Bible Studies: The Story Bible
Memory Work: Raising Lil Rockstars
Art: Preschool Art - It's the Process, Not the Product!
Interest-Driven Studies: Pinterest, YouTube, the library and our Learning Journal
Character: Laying Down the Rails for Children (not yet purchased)
Music: TBD

We will also continue to use Reading Eggs, Math Seeds, Cosmic Kids Yoga, and Adventures in Odyssey in addition to various educational apps.

Phew! That sounds like a lot when I list it out!! I am excited about all of it, and loving this homeschool journey we are on! Sometimes I still can't believe we are actually doing it, but I have learned many times over since becoming a parent that life rarely goes the direction you thought it would when dreaming during those months of waiting for a child. I am definitely learning to go with the flow... or at least more than I was able to before!

1 comment :

  1. Sis, I think you are doing an amazing job. Please don't feel like you need to defend yourself for doing what is right for your family.

    Some of the curriculum we used included; Konos, The Writing Road to Reading, and Math You See.

    Then do to circumstances beyond my control the kids had to go to public school. My son was board to death as he was an avid reader and could multiply when he entered first grade. And though I made my daughter repeat a year upon entering, she struggled all the way through as her retention was inhibited by a traumatic birth.

    No two children learn the same way or at the same pace. Homeschooling allows for greater excellence for all. Don't allow the system to dictate when you should be at a particular level. It saddens me that the public schools discouraged my son from advancing and left my daughter behind.

    You are an intelligent young lady and you know your son better than anyone else. Keep up the good work!

    Love and miss you all!!! Cad


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