When I was growing up, my mom used curriculum from various different schools and publishers, but for the first little while she generally stuck with everything from one place. Then, the more she homeschooled, the more she branched out and started using what she liked from different companies.
I knew when we started homeschooling that I was not going to be a “boxed curriculum” user, and that I wanted the flexibility of picking and choosing from different curricula.
What I was not prepared for was how much work, trial, and error it was going to include! I have picked so many brains, done so much research, bought and resold (fortunately most of it was already used!) oodles of books and nearly pulled my hair out over some things. And we’ve only been doing this one year! :D
But I think, at least for now, we have some things that are a good fit. We were blessed with some curriculum long before our kids were homeschool age as hand-me-downs from my mother-in-law, and while we’re not using all of it, it is the basis for our reading and phonics program, and I love it!
Here is our plan for our homeschool this year:
2nd Grade – The Boy (6 years old)
Phonics – We tried out First Language Lessons last year, and while I loved it, it wasn’t enough for The Boy who was itching to read. So we are using Level 2 with poem worksheets along with Christ Centered Curriculum Level C.
Spelling – Christ Centered Curriculum Level C contains most of what we need for spelling, depending on how he progresses, I may add in more.
Reading – I really like the Charlotte Mason Method for a lot of things, but especially the reading. I have combined the recommended book lists fromAmbleside Online (which is just an amazing homeschool resource in and of itself!) with readers and read-alouds from Sonlight Core 1 &2.
Math – I was using Math U See last year for both boys, and for JJ (#2) it was just not a fit. So we switched everyone over to RightStart Math 3/4 of the way through the year, and I MYSELF am learning so much! We are starting The Boy (#1) on Level C.
Music – We are starting piano lessons this year! I am excited and I hope he is as well. :D We will also be doing Hymns for a Kid’s Heart with some online supplements for studying hymns.
SENIOR KINDERGARTEN – JJ (4 1/2 years old)
Phonics/Spelling – JJ really liked the Christ Centered Curriculum last year, so we are continuing this year with Level B2-3.
KEEKERS (2 1/2 years old)
I won’t be doing a lot with our girlie, she’ll mostly be in with us observing and participating as able, and doing Before Five in a Row with JJ. We’ll be using some worksheets from Homeschool Creations and Tot School, lots of educational toys and hands-on activities to keep her going.
Science – We are continuing to use Apologia, moving on to Land Animals of the 6th Day. I cannot say enough good things about this curriculum, and we ALL enjoy the time spent reading and learning. We also have a zoo membership, so we’ll be using that to get some up close and personal animal encounters.
Handwriting – I took a course for Handwriting Without Tears a month or two ago – and we are SOLD on this curriculum! We will be doing it with all 3, starting at the beginning (Keekers is too young to do the writing part, but she’ll enjoy the gross motor skills for sure!). The Boy should progress faster through it and hopefully by the end of the year will be caught up to his level. No rush though!
Scripture Memory – The boys are in Awana again this year, so there are a good number of verses for them to learn each week. I am also using Homeschool Creations‘ Awana Printables with them. On top of memory verses from church, I hope to also continue our ABC Memory Verses. And how are we going to keep track of it all? With the Simply Charlotte Mason Scripture Memory System! When we’re finished with that, then I want to take 1 or 2 verses from each day of the 21 Days of Prayer for Sons challenge from Brooke’s “Warrior Prayers – Praying the Word for Boys” and have us memorize that.
Co-op – We meet for a co-op each week, so this will incorporate gym, art, novel studies, writing, etc. All of the extras I don’t have time to fit in my day :D
Wow, I just realized how much this actually is! I’m excited though! Happy homeschooling!