Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Homeschooling Resources

So, homeschooling....when I use to visualize people who homeschooled, they were very religious.  The women all wore long dresses, never cut their hair, and the family consisted of at least 12 kids.
Yes, I'm guilty of stereotyping....but boy was I wrong.  I was one of those people who thought that people who homeschooled their kids were off their rocker...until one day when I was forced to consider homeschooling as an option.  I won't go into the details of why, for everyone it's different,  but I also felt my oldest son disconnecting from me and I did not like it at all.

On my homeschool curriculum researching journey, and I call it a journey cause it felt physically and emotionally draining , I realized there was a plethora of  options.  Secular, non-secular, Charlotte Mason, Classical, online, parent-led, pieced together, boxed, unschooling, accredited, non-accredited....ahhh, what was the best fit for my family? 
The first year was not too bad, although I was ruling with an iron fist the first half of the year, I was terrified we would miss something.  I found as I began to relax, the kids relaxed, and the learning came a lot easier.  We did use a religious, boxed curriculum the first year because like I said, I was terrified I'd leave something out.  It was so-so.  The science and history were dry (text book led), the math was a spiral method and did not work well for my kids (homeschooling is a great way to discover how each child learns and taylor the curriculum accordingly). We finished the curriculum that year but I began my journey of researching for new learning resources for the next year.

This year, our 2nd, wowsers what a difference! I'm really happy with what I've chosen.  The history  and science are hands-on, and the history starts from the beginning of time instead of just concentrating on American history.  You mean there's more to the world than just the U.S.?  Reading, I don't have readers from a company that writes stories just for that purpose.  We use the classics.  Albeit they are kid versions, but nonetheless they have gotten my 9yr. old excited and wanting to read, yes wanting.  I talk with them about the books and we discuss the chapters.  They read at least a chapter a day and they record what they have read in their language arts binder.
Math....we use Math Mammoth, love love love it!  It's mastery based and there is a lot of mental math!

Anyway, I know homeschooling is NOT for everyone, but I'm happy our family has chosen homeschooling.  It has brought us closer and I'm learning, and re-learning right along with them.  And math, I'm thinking I might actually enjoy it this go-round....well, let's not get too crazy yet....
Here are some links of the different curriculum I've chosen in the past and the present! 
 Later Gators!  Aims

Curriculum we're using this year:

Classic stories for kids
More Classic stories for kids
Math Mammoth
First Language Lessons and Writing with Ease
R.E.A.L. Science and History Odyssey
Handwriting Without Tears

Last year:
BJU or Bob Jones University

p.s. we'll talk about the  latin curriculum  next time.....yes, I said latin :)


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