I’ve been asked often in the last week, “How is homeschool going?”
My response? It’s going.
Actually, it’s going a lot better than I’d anticipated.
I think it’s even going better than Asher had anticipated.
Because after last year, and the fact we hobbled and limped, broken and bruised across the finish line of 6th grade some time late this summer, we were not expecting this year to be great. We both knew we needed to up our game a notch (or a few notches in my case) and neither of us is a big fan of extra work.
But so far, so good.
And so, I thought I’d share my initial impressions of the curriculum we’re using this year… some of it new, some of it not-so-new. Because I love to read about others’ experiences with curriculum. If you have thoughts to share please do in the comments or with links to your posts on homeschool stuff.
Apologia Science – it’s what we used last year and Asher was able to complete it all, basically on his own, during the school year. It’s well laid out, easily followed and relatively interesting. Interesting enough (for a boy that doesn’t love science) that he finished without me having to threaten loss of life or limb. And he enjoys the at-home experiments. He can eat his breakfast and do his science. What’s not to love there?
Wordly Wise 3000 – we’re doing the online version of Wordly Wise this year. And so far, he much prefers it. He enjoys working on the computer, and the instant feedback and opportunity to ‘try again’ is good for him. It also provides additional reinforcement that the workbook doesn’t. Not 100% sure it justifies the cost of 4 times more than the workbook, but if he finishes one level, he can continue to the next. The subscription is good for one full year. Yet to be seen if it’s a keeper.
Lifepac by Alpha Omega – we’re using these for History and Geography and Language Arts. So far so good, but Language Arts is where Asher struggles. He probably needs some additional help in this area, but for now we’re going to stick with the basics. These are broken down into 10 booklets, and we’ve determined a schedule and have set an amount of time he has to complete each booklet. He likes that. He had to write his first paper of the year the other day on the origins of names. And he chose to do his on all of his siblings names. Pretty cute.
Teaching Textbooks – in a word, LOVE. Asher used Life of Fred last year and he did love it. But it just wasn’t enough repetition for him to retain what he’s learned. Probably my mistake – rookie! – but I just wasn’t sure of Asher’s learning style yet. I had considered TT last year and decided to go ahead and try them this year because of the rave reviews. Also, it’s computer based, which he likes. And it tracks all of his lessons/tests and I can have him redo any lesson or test, which I like. So far, he really enjoys this program and I think it’s going to be a keeper.
I just have to say, y’all are awesome. After I posted my cry for help, Sweet Sue is sending me a homeschool organizer (you’re the best, Sue!). And everyone had such great advice for me! Since reading all those comments, I’ve taken a deep breath and determined it’s going to be okay. Thanks y’all… I really needed that! I’ve been keeping track of current and future assignments, and decided to only plan out a week or two at a time. For now, we’ll revisit his work-load weekly to determine what works best for him.
We’ve even added PE to the mix, four days a week. And Asher has decided to run a 5K in the fall. What?!? Honestly, I can’t believe this is the same kid who – less than one year ago – had stomach aches galore and was miserably unhappy at public school. So grateful I get to stay home and, despite my failures and shortcomings, be his teacher.