Friday, March 12, 2010

Weekly Wrap Up: It isn't February anymore

Now, every year sometime in February, I'm ready to scrap my curriculum, my approach to homeschooling, my hairstyle, the bulk of my wardrobe, our schedule for the week, the arrangement of furniture in the living room, and, well...I'm just ready to start chucking things to the scrap pile. However, in the past 7 years, we've persevered through my winter duldrums and we've been using the same curriculum since Sweetling was in Kindergarten.

That being said, its now March, and I'm definitely reconsidering my curriculum for next year. While our curriculum has served us well, its no longer meeting our needs as a family. Even the Jedi has said its time to look at other options, so I know its not just me and my winter blues.

My Weekly-Wrap Up is:
I've probably spent as much time looking over curriculum on the web as I have actually teaching this week. It's been a long time since I've had to pick out curriculum. I'd really appreciate feedback from any other homeschoolers who have experience with any of the curriculum I'm considering.

Here's what our needs are:
I have a Sweetling, who is going to be 12. She loves to work independently and is advanced in math and in reading. She is quiet and loves routines and structure. Her little brother, who is going to be 7, is nearly her polar opposite. He is very hands-on, action oriented, can't keep still, little chatterbox. Despite the differences in ages and temperment, they get along very well. I want something that provides us the opportunity to study, learn, and do some projects together as a family....while still providing Sweelting with the quiet, independent study time she needs.

I'm looking at My Father's World: Exploring Countries and Cultures as our base curriculum.

For math, I'm considering Singapore Math for both children, on their appropriate levels of course.

For language arts, I'm considering Writing Strands 1 and 5. I'll continue Sweetling in her Vocabulary from Classical Roots while Toa of Boy will strenthen his spelling and word recognition skills with Sequential Spelling. In addition to "book basket" books and weekly library trips, Sweetling will read and study two novels of her choice using Progeny Press Literature Study Guides.

Sweetling is also looking through some science curriculums to determine what she might like to study.

So, that has been my week. I'd love to hear, good or bad, from anyone who has experience with any of those curriculums!


Loving Our Homeschool said...

I haven't used any of those curriculums you're looking at (well, we briefly tried Sequential Spelling, didn't like it, but I'm considering borrowing it from a friend again to try again), but I hope you will find the one that works best for you! It's so great that there are so many to choose from, but it can be overwhelming!

Kelly said...

Can't help with the curriculum search. I hope this doesn't mean you are leaving co op :( Jonathan lves your class and thanks to you writing. I can resort to begging if need be!

AFwife99 said...

Hi, I found your blog off the weekly wrap up link. I haven't tried any of the books you are considering either, so I don't have any specific advice about them. But I applaud your efforts to look for a better fit for your kids- the freedom homeschooling provides to let us custom design our curriculum is a wonderful thing.

joelle said...

I really love Singapore Math. it is fast pace and can sometime require extra practice, but it has a very good approach to math.

Chef Penny said...

HI! I hopped on over from the Weekly Wrap Up! The only one that I have used is Singapore Math. IT is awesome! It is very visual ( I have visual learners) and really is a terrific math curriculum. I would recommend it hands down for the needs that you are describing. Have fun with the curriculum search!

Cheryl said...

LOL that first paragraph sounds like me, we're kindred spirits! I wish I could help. All I've really used are Sonlight, Math U See and Apologia.

Holly@aiminghigh said...

We lean toward CM-Ambleside approach, but I'm pretty eclectic and beat to my own drum, so my comment will reflect that I suppose...we use Singapore Math and really like it. I just used Writing Strands 4 with my niece that I homeschool. It works for her needs, but I myself do not care for it (dry, boring). Its plus side is that it is spelled out daily so no prep time is needed from me. I'm currently exploring what to use with my own children for writing.
As far as Science is concerned...we have really enjoyed Apologia. Barb at Handbook of Nature Study just did an excellent post on how she personalized Apologia to make it more rounded to meet their family's style and to combat the criticism it gets.
Blessings on you and yours as you seek God's guidance for this transition.
Many Blessings,