Thursday, August 14, 2008

Homeschool Curriculum Choices

Being a homeschool mom, means having to organize and plan your school year, picking out and buying books that you feel would be good to use in teaching your children, making sure you have enough pencil, crayons, markers, scissors and art supplies to keep your children busy for an entire school year. I am somewhere in the midst of all of this. I have planned and re-planned this year. I have ordered some books and plan on buying a few more on Saturday. I know we have enough scissors and pencils, but I can't help but thinking that maybe it won't be enough. I am getting the jitters. It is odd. Last year, I knew exactly what I wanted, but this year I have set myself a goal to do everything better. Preparing for the school year is like making New Year's resolutions. I make resolutions. Now I break a few as we all do, but for the most part we are happy or just plain accept how the year went and plan anew. I have made some curriculum choices and want to share them with you. Keep in mind, that I have a tendency to tweek things and change my mind as I go along.

Our main source happens to be the grade 1 and 2 lesson plans from CHC (Catholic Heritage Curricula).

I think it will be easier if I break things down into grade levels.

Grade 2
Devotional Stories for Little Folks
Devotional Stories for Little Folks, Too
My Catholic Speller, Level A
Language of God, Level A
Religion 2 for Young Catholics
Science 2 for Young Catholics
Our Father's World
Great Saints in World History 2
Reading for Comprehension
Complete Mathsmart 2
Faith and Freedoms Readers

Grade 1
Little Stories for Little Folks (learn to read program)
My Very First Catholic Speller
Religion 1 for Young Catholics
Science 1 for Young Catholics
Faith and Freedom Readers
Complete Mathsmart 1
Reading for Comprehension
Catholic Children's Treasure Box

This is the list of stuff that I have already or have ordered. I am looking at some "how to" sources for writing. I haven't decided on an Art curriculum or music curriculum either. These things will hopefully work themselves out. We will be doing mapping skills, but I will decide on Saturday which curriculum I will chose. I have to see the contents of the books to decide on this.

I stumbled upon a really nice website the other day that gave me some ideas of things to do with the kids with regards to learning grammar, poetry and writing. Take a look at Elizabeth Foss' website and see what you think. I like the "real learning" approach to homeschooling, but am not always sure on how to execute this concept. She does an exceptional job of bringing this concept to life. I have to admit that I am using a few workbooks this year, but this is mainly to satisfy the school board in our blended subjects. Reading about things in much more exciting than trying to remember what the text book brings across in a few boring paragraphs. I don't remember many of the things I learned in history when I was in school. I memorized for the test and forgot everything the day after. Wasn't that a waste? I hope that my children will retain more of what they learn by using historical fiction and interesting stories in subjects like science, math, art and music.

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