GrowingForChrist

Faith, Family, Love and Reviews

2014-2015 curricula choices

on August 19, 2014

One of my favorite things is to look at all the choices I have in educating my children each year, and as they’ve gotten older I let them have say so in what we use for school as well.  Many think that it’s free, or that we have a set curricula to follow or that we do what the public schools do – and all that is wrong (well if you do virtual school it’s ‘free’ or if you can get me hand me down curricula).  If you read my other post You’ll know I made our choices early this year.  We’ve used Saxon math and began to dread school.  Switched to Rod and Staff and while I liked it relied heavily on areas I didn’t feel we needed like Biblical and metric measures.  That is what is so great about homeschool – if something doesn’t fit you can change it, unlike with schools the child would be stuck doing something and as I know first hand, that usually makes learning a chore and ultimately the child will give up.

So this year I will be teaching a 3rd grade 8 year old, a 5th grade 10 year old (as of September) and a 8/9th grade 12 1/2 year old.  The oldest is hard to figure out because she works above where she’d technically be in school – we’re looking at a 2018 or 2019 graduation year.  We are going to follow the guideline set forth by the ODE for public school graduation, but the curricula will be Christian in it’s worldview but goes above and beyond what would be taught in the school system.  I was leaning towards having the girls do Beyond Five in a Row but after talking with the oldest and knowing she desires to graduate early we are both willing to let go of Beyond and she will pursue an 8th/9th grade course of study, allowing her the credits needed for graduation.  We’ve been into a light schedule for our 2014-2015 year since the end of July and we’re adding in more as we go.

So without further ado:

3rd grade:

  • I will be focusing on getting him to read – he knows the letters and their sounds but seems resistant to actually putting the sounds together.  That is our main goal of this school year, to have him reading.  While I say school year I aim to have him reading hopefully by December.  We shall see.
  • Math is Teaching Textbooks 3. 
  • Science and Health will be Exploring Creation with Chemistry and Physics and if we finish that we’ll move on to Exploring Creation with Zoology II.  We’ll read over a Rod and Staff and an Abeka health book I have on hand.
  • Language arts will be again focusing mainly on reading using IEW PAL program and if that doesn’t work we’ll throw in Alphabet Island.  Once he’s reading I’ll add in Song School Spanish and maybe Song School Latin.  Even though he can write I’m going to have him use Handwriting without Tears print.
  • Art is going to be See the Light DVDs – we did a lesson yesterday and it was quite fun (another post on that coming later!)
  • History and geography will be Notgrass’ America the Beautiful and Mystery of History Volume 4
  • Also going to be using Five in A Row with him.  I remember the memories I made with my girls using this and I’ll be throwing this in at times as well.

5th grade:

  • My main goal for her this year is to work on making her writing more legible and working on cursive.  As well as getting her to read bigger books and finish them.
  • Math is Teaching Textbooks 5.
  • Science and Health will be Exploring Creation with Chemistry and Physics and if we finish that we’ll move on to Exploring Creation with Zoology II.  We’ll read over a Rod and Staff and an Abeka health book I have on hand.
  • Language arts will be Essentials in Writing.  She has some of the 4th grade level to finish and then she’ll move right into the 5th grade level.  I’ll also be having her use the Handwriting without Tears cursive or the Fundanoodle cursive book.
  • Art is going to be See the Light DVDs (see 3rd grade)
  • History and geography will be Notgrass’ America the Beautiful and Mystery of History Volume 4
  • Also will be having her continue with Spanish for Children and Latin for Children.
  • She will also be dancing and performing with the Junior Company which will also be for fine arts and PE.

8/9th grade:

  • My main goal for her is to get her reading some classic literature and also working on writing papers that she’ll need to research.
  • Math is Teaching Textbooks Pre-Algebra
  • Science and Health will be Wonders of Creation with the first book being Weather and Astronomy.  She’ll just work her way through the series and each book is laid out to make assigning credits easy.  I will also have her read through the Abeka health book.
  • Language arts is Cover Story – it’s a language arts/grammar/writing curricula all rolled into one in which the aim will be to write a magazine.
  • Art is going to be See the Light DVDs (see 3rd or 5th grade)
  • History and geography will be her finishing Notgrass’ America the Beautiful or she can begin Notgrass’ high school level American History.  I also have their world history and government courses as well.  Mystery of History Volume 4 will also be on the agenda.  Of course, I know that is A LOT of history for one year so I’m not expecting all of it to be done this year.
  • She will also be continuing with Spanish for Children.  I’d love for her to do Latin but she doesn’t have the desire and I’m okay with that.
  • She will also be taking dance and performing with the Junior Dance Company which will count as  PE or fine arts or both.

And all children will be doing Bible – with Notgrass there is Bible built in which is so great and it is the same way with Mystery of History (which is why we love it so much!).  I’ll also be continuing with our Bible Study for All Ages which we got for review and I kind of took a break from it so we could finish other stuff for our assessment.  And I’ll be throwing in other books like those on missionaries and other living history books through the year.  Thankfully my oldest is very independent and doesn’t need me hovering over her constantly – she leaves her completed work and I check it, usually I don’t do grades but that is changing this year. 

If you’re wondering how we do Independent School please read post 1 and post 2 – although I have changed some of the ways we do this – it’s pretty much the same this year as it was last year.  The oldest is also a HUGE help with my son, she helps him with his math while I aid my other daughter if she needs help.  I’m all for giving help and showing them how to get to their answers but not giving answers.  If they learn now then they’ll be independent later – which is a big plus for helping out with the family and also later on when they are on their own.

We also made the plunge back into homeschool support groups – I re-joined a group we were members of like 6 years ago.  It’s not a co-op but will give us field trips without me having to do all the planning, spelling bee, history and science fair as well as a graduation ceremony when we get to that point.

So what are you looking forward to this school year?  Big goals?  New curricula?

(c) 2014, Sarah Bailey/Growing for Christ, All Rights Reserved, Unauthorized Duplication is a Violation of Applicable Laws

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4 responses to “2014-2015 curricula choices

  1. ohiosarah says:

    Mom~ C is 9 ~H

  2. […] and Latin so we’ve been quite busy.  You can read about our 2014-2015 curricula choices here.  We also have two field trips under our belts so far – and Monday will make the 3rd!  We […]

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