“Eh… So… Are you still homeschooling?”
I hear that question a lot. And I get it.
I mean, doing school every single morning. With three kids (one being a wild toddler). While running a blog and our doTERRA business. And writing a real, published cookbook. And keeping up with a homestead, etc, etc, etc.
It sounds crazy. Well, it IS crazy.
Maybe I’m crazy.
But regardless, the answer is ‘yes’. We are in the thick of our third year of homeschooling and we don’t plan to stop any time soon. I think we’re lifers, y’all.
I’ve written homeschooling posts for our previous two years, (here’s year one and here’s year two) so I figured I’d keep the tradition alive this year and write up what we’re doing this time around.
Why We Homeschool
Our reasons for diving into Year 3 are the same as they were our very first year. In a nutshell: We’ve created a unique life that we love and I don’t want my kids to miss out on it for 7+ hours a day. Homestead life is rich with lessons, creative pursuits, and opportunities to develop skills, and I personally hate the thought of sending my kids away from this environment for the majority of their childhood. It’s important to us to raise our children to be problem-solvers and entrepreneurs, not just employees– I think homeschooling fosters that idea beautifully.
(This is where I interject my disclaimer: homeschooling is not for everyone. Truly. The intention of this post is not to judge or condemn anyone who chooses public schooling. Heck, who knows? Our kids could end up there sometime in the future. As much as I love it, homeschooling is not my sacred cow.)
That being said, homeschooling isn’t perfect and we certainly aren’t perfect. Having been homeschooled myself (K-12), I’ve witnessed very successful homeschool families and extremely dysfunctional ones. But that happens with public schooling, too. There are days where our mornings are ridiculously organized and orderly, and days (kind of like today) where everyone has a hard time staying focused and the toddler is sticking blocks up her nose while we’re doing spelling words. It comes with the territory.
Homeschooling with Three Kids
Speaking of toddlers, doing school with a two-year old in the house is… interesting. I haven’t yet developed a foolproof strategy of getting school done with other little ones in the house. I doubt I’ll ever get it completely figured out– we just do the best we can. Toddlers have a knack for creating chaos, no matter how good your intentions. Our “plan” is usually for her to play with special toys while we do our lessons, but that doesn’t always work and sometimes she ends up sitting on my lap grabbing at Unifix cubes and flashcards with her octopus arms.
(By the way– these magnetic tiles are the most-played with toy we own. They are out on a daily basis.)
On the flip side, she’s learning by osmosis (she’s starting to count) and she can hold her pencil with proper form while she pretends to write the letter “a”. So there’s that, I suppose.
This is also my first year schooling two kiddos at once (Kindergarten and Second Grade), which has required some juggling. Prairie Boy turned 5 in October, and if he had been going to public school, he likely would have waited to start Kindergarten until next year. That was initially my plan, since he showed very little interested in schoolwork and had a hard time sitting at the table when we started in September. However, something clicked this winter and he’s been soaking up the lessons like crazy. Right now he’s on track with Kindergarten-level work and really enjoys it, so I’m rolling with it. I can’t believe how much he’s changed in just a few short months.
Homeschool Curriculum: Year Three
The amount of curriculum choices out there will make your head spin, but I am committed to sticking with my plan of keeping things simple. I do not try to recreate a traditional classroom, and we focus on the basics. I especially love curriculum that can be used for multiple grades at once, as I believe there is much value in the one room classroom model.
Here’s what we’ve been using this year:
(this post contains affiliate links)
Ever since she started Kindergarten, Prairie Girl has been especially strong in math, but slightly weaker in language arts. We had tried two different reading curriculums previously, and I just didn’t love them. She was getting frustrated and reading wasn’t flowing for her. I spent hours searching for different options, even though I knew in the back of my mind what we’d end up using… My mom used a book called The Writing Road to Reading with me, and I hated every minute of it in elementary school (sorry, just keepin’ it real). However, it gave me an extremely strong foundation in writing and reading, and I still use the principles I learned in that book to this day. (The only higher education I have are two Associates Degrees in Equine Studies– that darn book gave me the tools I needed to turn writing into a career. Who would have thought?)
And so, much to my chagrin, I found myself hunting down that very same book to use with Prairie Girl. It’s been revamped over the years and is now called Spell to Write and Read, but the principles and method are basically the same.
But it hasn’t necessarily been a slam dunk. Let me start with the GOOD first:
In less than six months of implementing Spell to Write and Read, Prairie Girl’s reading has improved dramatically. She’s reading fluidly and confidently, and more importantly, she is understanding WHY words are spelled and pronounced certain ways. I felt like the other books were based too much on all the exceptions to the rules… (“A” says “ah”, but wait… not here, or here, or here, or here…) SWR teaches all of the letter sounds right off the bat, along with spelling rules, so the English language suddenly becomes so much more logical. There are still exceptions, of course, but they are fewer and far between. It’s enlightening, even as an adult. We introduce 30-40 new spelling words each week through the book’s lessons. Focusing on spelling as a foundation has skyrocketed her reading ability and comprehension, and when it’s time to read a storybook, we don’t have the tears and frustration we used to.
SWR functions as a spelling, writing, and reading curriculum (supplemental story/chapter books are recommended once the child is ready), and this all-in-one approach fits perfectly with my “keep it simple” plan.
However, there is another side to SWR:
It is a BEAR to implement. While the curriculum itself is brilliant and I believe wholeheartedly in its premise, the organization of the books are less than impressive. They recommend setting aside a large chunk of time to learn how to teach it, and they aren’t kidding. My first clue should have been the multiple “getting started” guides that came with it– no other curriculum I’ve ever seen or used needs this many different instructional sheets, websites, and videos. It’s insane. I may or may not have said some bad words while sitting at the table late at night trying to decipher it all.
Once you’re familiar with it? It’s a cakewalk. But the way the books are laid out feels clunky and confusing to me.
That being said, the time I spent figuring it all out (about 6-8 hours, I think) was worth it, and I’d do it again for the benefits I’m seeing with my kids. Prairie Boy has already worked through all the letter sounds of the alphabet and I’m excited to use SWR with him from the very beginning. I suspect reading will flow more easily for him not having used other books first.
We also read aloud almost daily. Little House in the Big Woods, Farmer Boy, and Mr. Popper’s Penguins have been our favorites so far this year.
We used Singapore Math for first grade last year, and while it gave Prairie Girl a strong foundation, I didn’t love how they presented some of the concepts. We switched over to Saxon 2 this year and we’ll be sticking with it for next year as well. I like Saxon’s no nonsense approach and the simplicity of how they present each concept. She’s been breezing right through it, and I’m seeing huge advances in her understanding of various concepts since we started the year.
Math with Prairie Boy started out informally. We did a lot of counting at the beginning of the year, as well as making patterns with blocks and shapes. We’re working on counting by 10s and 5s, and he is grasping basic addition and subtraction concepts. We did most of this with simple manipulatives and a white board, I grabbed a DK Children’s math workbook for him a few weeks ago for added reinforcement, but it’s nothing we haven’t already covered.
We’re using Story of the World again this year and I love it. It’s no frills, but the kids adore it and I love that my 5-year old can tell me about the Hanging Gardens of Babylon and the library of Ashurbanipal. I highly recommend getting the accompanying activity guide for each book, although we don’t always do the more complicated crafts (crafts just ain’t my thing). The Prairie Kids love the coloring pages, and I have noticed a huge different in their retention when they color a page on the story topic.
I enjoyed Dr. Jay Wile’s biology and chemistry books when I was in high school, so I decided to try his elementary science curriculum this year, Science in the Beginning. It’s marketed as a book for K-6, though I’ve found most of the lessons are a little too advanced for a Kindergartener and a Second Grader. It has an experiment for every lesson, which I appreciated, though some are better than others. We’re using portions of it this year, and I plan to implement more as they grow older. At their ages, most of their science lessons are a part of our every day life, so at this point, they are learning more science during the non-school portion of our days. (Weather, solid/liquid/gas, water cycle, seeds and plants, etc)
And that’s pretty much the extent of it. We start school by 8am every day (I’m a stickler for staying on a schedule– our life functions best that way), and we usually finish no later than 11am. Afternoons are for playing outside, riding horses, art projects, puzzles, legos, or helping Daddy in the shop. I see us adding more into our days as the kids get older, but right now I’m mainly focused on giving them a very strong foundation in math and reading and going from there. Next year we hope to join our local Classical Conversations community (as a way to connect with other homeschoolers) and Prairie Girl will be doing 4-H once she turns 8.
It’s messy, crazy at times, and not for everyone, but I can genuinely say I’m enjoying this homeschooling ride. Do you homeschool? Leave a comment and share your favorite curriculums!
Listen to the Old Fashioned On Purpose podcast episode #38 on the topic How Being Homeschooled Helped me Later in Life HERE. Also listed on episode #66 for my Non-fancy Homeschool Routine.
Tammy F. says
We homeschool too and my kids are the same age. We love the flexibility and we are starting to homestead. The kids enjoy helping with chores and our animals. Glad to hear you’re still going strong!
Brian Marble says
Hi Jill, me and my wife homeschool our 2 children also ( 9 and 15 ) My wife taught the majority of the time cause quite frankly i thought i wasnt smart enough to teach them, i felt how could i teach them if im not sure about it myself ya know? But i turned a new leaf over this new year and started working with my 9 yr old boy and i must admit while its not perfect im not horrible at it and he enjoys me teaching him so win win 😀 Thanks for saying what curriculums you use im actually looking them up and considering them. One of our big ones we use is Education.com and i also do alot of book work with him also 😀
All in all i actually enjoy it while trying to homestead at the same time lol. My dad left us early last year, so now i took over the family farm. Although there hasnt been any animals prior to my dads passing he (along with me) have been farmers all our lives and all he wanted was to see cows if nothing else back on the farm and honoring him we brought in 4 cows along with around 50 chickens ( and im on the lookout for a donkey to let run with the cows because dad always wanted a donkey 😀 😀 so when i can find one and afford it im getting one heh ) Your website you got here has been a big help in all aspects of my new life i lead now and i take this moment to Thank You for everything you do!!!
Elizabeth Mcwilliams says
We also homeschool and do Classical Conversations. I have a 2, 4, 5, and 6 year old. We are on a homestead in north Texas and we love it!
Andrea Rossignol says
Homeschooling in Cheyenne! My daughter also turned five in October and we’re using Abeka for kindergarten – and loving it! My three year old son is “kinda” doing a free curriculum I got online for preschool, but he’s mostly just listening in to his sister’s lessons and I add in preschool appropriate elements to our math and phonics games. And my poor toddler spends most of our school time stuck in the pack’n’play with a whole ton of toys… that he likes to throw out! Fortunately, our school day only lasts about an hour and a half every day, so it’s not too bad for him!
Tifini Koczan says
Wonderful story and I love your honesty, Jill. We have been homesteading for 5 years now. Homeschooling for 15. We use ABECKA curriculum as our foundation. Over the years I have learned to filter out what is truly needed for them to learn and what is less important. My kids know survival and how to be resourceful. How to be totally self sufficient. That to me is worth it all. I have a 6 year old daughter who reads 5th grade level and this is ABECKA reading books which to me are more advanced. This to me is a miracle. And all Glory goes to God. I know He did it through me. We love homeschooling and homesteading. So to all you out there stay with it never give up. The LORD has provided everything we need we need to just open our eyes and look around.
This is our first year homeschooling and LOVE IT! Yes there are days were it is just crazy, but I wouldn’t trade this for anything. We are using Teaching Textbooks for my 5th grader and Horizon for our 2nd grader ( will be switching him to Teaching textbooks next year. We also use Sonlight Curriculum for History/ Bible. English we are using worksheets I have found( have to work on finding a good curriculum for this). We also go to a local co-op every Friday, which the kids love!
Shelley Crist says
Hello there, homeschooling in Mariposa my 5th grader and have been doing it since kindergarten. She loves Story of the World for history. This year we are doing Teaching Textbooks for math and it is working out well. Science we dabble in many books, cooking and outdoor homestead/nature activities. We work in the mornings and the afternoons are goats, horses, chickens and the rest of the farm and garden. Love it!!
CeAnne@ St. Fiacre's Farm says
Second generation homeschoolers here. My husband was homeschooled. We have two middle schoolers and two in lower elementary. Wouldn’t have it any other way 🙂 we are using teaching textbooks for math, all about Reading and spelling the rest we create.
Hey Jill, this is my 7th year homeschooling (Yikes!) and I have a just turned 5 year old, 1st/2nd grader, 4th grader, and 6th grader. I’ve taught all my kids how to read with Sing, Spell, Read and Write. I really recommend it and like the order it teaches them phonics. My three older ones are excellent readers! I’ve also used Rod and Staff Publishers Preschool ABC workbooks with all my kids. They are a set of workbooks that are very inexpensive and the “C” book is great for an introduction to learning their numbers. You can order them at milestonebooks.com From 2nd grade on I have used My Father’s World curriculum. It has worked well for us. There are some things I love about it and some things I have tweaked a little. They suggest Singapore Math through 6th grade, which has worked so far for us. I think Saxon is a good choice too. There are soooo many choices out there that it is mind-boggling. I decided to just stick with one and go with it! MFW is nice because their Bible, history and science are all the same which helps with multiple grade levels.
Michelle Monette says
Hello there from our homeschooling/farming family of 3 boys ages 12, 9 and 6 up here in Northern Ontario. I myself am not from a homeschool background but as the early kindergarten years approached I felt that public school was not the choice at that point. By grade one I knew that my time with my boys was precious as their childhood years were and felt that homeschool was the way to go for us. I am a true believer of that life skills + academics = education and my boys are the better for it!!!!
Hi Michelle, where in Northern Ontario are you at? I’m from close to Sudbury and am now raising 2 little girls in Guatemala (I blog at http://www.mamathrives.com). I’m considering homeschooling them but they are still small (1 1/2 and 4 1/2) and do not sit still very long!
While I am not a mom yet I was homeschooled and so was my husband. In turn, we want to homeschool our future children.
With that said I have been so worried about being able to manage a blog, business, and home with the addition of children. I love what I do but have so many fears of being able to make it all happen.
Lisa Kalies says
Jill, I homeschooled my two children also. My son started homeschooling in the 2nd grade and my daughter started in kindergarten. I did it until they finished high school. They have graduated from college. My son is a mechanical engineer and my daughter is in Advertising.
Would I do it again? Absolutely. I loved being with them every moment. We had our challenges and we worked our way through them.
Hi — I really enjoy your blog. We have a weekend place in Wheatland and I think of you as we pass Chugwater — the prettiest section on that stretch of I-25. I am 67 and went to regular school, starting in the mid-1950s. I learned most of my English grammer by osmosis, as I was a great reader (I “borrowed” books from my four-years-older brother starting in second grade.)
I discovered an old series (old in 1957!) of books “starring” Freddy the Pig. Freddy and his friends lived on Farmer Brown’s farm. They could talk but didn’t speak to humans. It remains a delightful series and can be found in re-publications of the originals. If you happen to stumble across them, do give Freddy a try. My favorite is “Freddy the Detective.”
Good luck. Enjoy the remainder of the winter — in Boulder we had 70 degrees on Sunday and zero degrees by Tuesday morning. I just love the winters around here.
Jean Helf says
So glad to hear you’re a “lifer!” I was too. In fact, this year was the first in 26 years that we didn’t homeschool–my “baby” graduated last spring and is in college this year. Very different stage of life for me….
I also used The Writing Road to Reading and echo everything you said about it. For math I finally found Math U See. LOVED IT! I highly recommend it and suggest you check it out. In my opinion it is so much better than Saxon. Easier to use and has more review of past concepts so they really get them. Science was the Apologia line once it finally came out. Until then, there really wasn’t a great curriculum for it. I never really found a great history curriculum. We also used the Story of the World, but they were in upper elementary and it only takes a year or two, then you’re left searching. We finally settled on historically based novels (kind of like Sunlight does) and then would research to see how accurate they were. It was fun and caught their interest.
Keep up the good work! You’ve got the right ideas!
Daryle in VT says
My parents gave me the opportunity to read at 2 years. I could pronounce ‘hippopotamus’ at that age, as well. That was in the 50s. Home schooling? I think so. The slightly older girl living next door would teach me cursive writing from her class when my class was still drawing letters.
Certainly most parents can’t home school. Those who can, should.
When I was in school we had a moment of silence and pledged allegiance to the flag. There was one teacher for 30 students. A dunce cap sat on a high stool in the corner. The ACLU did not exist.
Times have truly changed. Home schooling is now the better choice for well educated children. It should be encouraged at every opportunity.
Sure sounds like you are doing a FANTASTIC job!
I’m planning on homeschooling our little boy once he is old enough. Being a natural researcher, I’ve started early with everything I needed to research in order to homeschool.
I’ve come to settle on the Charlotte Mason approach. I know you are very busy, but if you can spare some time, take a look at it. I think it will fit in beautifully and seamlessly in your lifestyle and I think you will simply LOVE it. It is not a curricula per se, but rather a way of teaching. (What is education? A question I think every parent should ponder).
Here is a website with podcasts from the first and second generation women who’s used the Charlotte Mason approach. (Including the blind mother who has taught Art to her children).
Hello. If you like Charlette Maoson you may well like Ambleside Online as well. *smile* Mystery of History may also be fun for your family. We have enjoyed this History. Also, for math we started with Rod and Staff and have transferred to Christian Light Education. Finding the home school laws in your state is invaluable. *smile* We started our journey while living in Washington state and “got” to test or have an evaluation once a year from the time our children turned eight. We used Family Learning Organization (FLO) and were able to use the CTBS style testing in the comfort of our home. As long as it’s used with integrity it can be of great use for any home school family that “gets” to test according to state law. It can be used in Oregon state as well even though their laws are different. And here in Idaho, we don’t “have” to test in that way, which I find freeing since we use a curriculum that has quizzes and test of its own. *smile* All the best on your journey. Sincerely, Mommy of two growing blessings & so much more!
Lynnette Allred says
Well, I have read through all the glowing homeschool and homestead comments, and I thought I would add my NON homeschooling comment. I have 5 kids–7,5,4,2,4 months, and homeschooling right now would be a nightmare for me. However, I DO homeschool music lessons, and it has been absolutely fabulous and fun (despite many times telling my husband that I can’t do it anymore). We are hoping to add animals to our little suburban “homestead” next year, so we have ambitions! I have discovered that finding moms who home music school their kids is next to impossible, so I am pioneering it on my own. I am glad all you homeschooling families can find good supports online!
Hello. I have taught our children to read music beginning with a keyboard we have they learned to play a few songs but never did enjoy playing until they chose the instrument of their own. Our son chose the guitar and our daughter the flute. Since they know how to read music all there is now is learning the instrument. It’s exciting to see them excel at things they enjoy. Oh, and we’ve home schooled from the start. *smile* So, here I am, home music schooling mama. *smile* Hi. *smile* I was in band in school; starting in percussion then by grade eight I learned the alto saxiphone, later learning how to read the bass clef I can figure out some piano music. So with my love for music and with the help of Rod and Staff’s music theory we have music knowledge covered, which is a blessing from the Lord to be sure! *big smile* I hope you hear this in the tone it’s intended, you’re not alone, and I have greatly enjoyed this journey with our two growing blessings. *smile* Sincerely, Mommy of two growing blessings & so much more!
We are out in the boondocks in ND! Loving it! We homeschool using CC also, I hope you love the community aspect of it! We also use Saxon and it’s just awesome to have your kids all around all day!!! Mine are 2,4,6 and 8 right now! Thanks for all your hardwork!!!
Hi Sarah! I am also in ND and am doing research on potentially my kiddos once they are old enough (3 and 1). They are still little but I know it will come quicker than I want it to! I am located in minot are you somewhere close?
Lauren Childs says
I’ve been homeschooling my girls for 11 years, now, and wouldn’t exchange the experience for anything! We use A Beka, All About Spelling, and Saxon math. My 8th grader is dyslexic, and until we started All About Spelling, every day had at least one complete meltdown–it’s been a lifesaver! We live in Papua New Guinea, and many people think I “have” to homeschool, but I would do it no matter where I lived. (By the way, my husband and I were both also homeschooled, and we both believe it let us learn “life” in a more real way than a typical education would have!) By the way, I grew up in Montana, and I desperately miss those wonderful western winters!
Kerstin DeRolf says
I too homeschooled my son from the 6th-12th grade, and he enjoyed most of it. Interestingly enough, his 5th grade teacher recommended he would enjoy homeschooling…she did it with both her boys, and is now doing it with her daughter as well. 🙂
I just thought I would add some interesting curriculums that we enjoyed. One was McGuffey Readers – they are online and free, and even include a speller. There are only 5 books – they were originally used in the mid-late 1800’s, so actually get pretty advanced by book 5; they also include cursive practice.
Next is the Mr. Q Science material. It is aimed primarily at elementary & middle school science, but when we used his books he was working on high school as well. What I like is that he is a Kansas science teacher who includes Common Core, but most importantly makes it fun and even makes labs fun, as he includes stuff you generally have around the house.
I hope this info helps, and enjoy your time; I know we really enjoyed it!
My kids are ages 12,15 and 17. We use Christian Light Education for Math. We tried Saxon and I liked the review, but in the older years I thought the lessons were long to teach. Christian Light lessons are written to the student and simplified. So much better for them to understand. Ive used it 3 years now and kids are doing good.
We switched to Christian Lights Language Arts 2 years ago. I think its a bit advanced, but its going ok. I still have not found a high school English curriculum we enjoy.
This year we started Layers of Learning for history,science, geography. I really like it, but maybe not aggressive enough for high school, but they seem to be learning more with this than with a boring textbook.
It seems like theres so much more flexability for elementary age kids than for high schoolers.
We also use CLE in our home. I don’t like the diagramming of sentences in the English, but some kids really excel with the braking down of the written word while others do not. So, in an effort to encourage more descriptive words in their own writing we tolerate the diagramming in this English program. Not to mention we are hoping to earn the accredited high school diploma that CLE offers if one chooses. For history we use CLE but we also like Mystery of History that has different levels of activities for the students. Have a great day finding what works for your family and you. Remember to pray always. Sincerely, Mommy of two growing blessings & so much more!
Hi Jill, I really enjoyed this post! I’m not a parent yet and I was educated in public school, but my partner and I have agreed that we will homeschool if we have kids. Public education does exactly as you eloquently pointed out – it turns kids into future employees (drones), not independent thinkers and problem-solvers. I heard once that the current mainstream education model came into being during the Industrial Revolution, when parents had to work long hours in the factory and send the kids somewhere during that time. The kids, future factory workers, were trained to adapt to factory life: sit in your row, don’t move until the bell rings, and don’t talk out of line. Very creepy if you really think about it! Anyways, thanks again for your insight and curriculum recommendations.
You are a natural, Jill! I love the way you are able to share your journey with others, too. Homeschooling our six children all the way through has been so fulfilling for me and my husband, and has allowed our children to share so many great times together in the midst of it all–just living life together and learning along the way. Once the high school years arrived, we had to be more intentional with our schedule to make sure they were on track with the credits for graduation and college. But oh the joys of those jam-packed early years! I wouldn’t have traded it for a career (nursing was my field) for all the money in the world. It took all of my energy and resourcefulness to make it through–and lots of help from grandparents and friends. Now our youngest is mid-way through his college career, and all the others have graduated from college, some with multiple degrees. And I am totally enjoying this stage of my life–time for new things! 🙂 To God be the glory!
We are SE of Cheyenne and I guess you could say we are going into our 2nd year of homesteading (thought my hubby does have another job as well).
I homeschooled with my own curriculum for 1.5 years. Then we were introduced to the K12 program and I now have 2 of our 4 children enrolled in the WYVA program. It’s a little more intense than some of the other homeschool programs we looked at, but it works well for our family.
It will be interesting to see how next year goes as I’ll have kindergartner, 6th and 9th grader to go with a 3 year old 😉 Honestly, I’m a little nervous as projects, milking the cow, caring for the chickens, making all the homemade stuff we can make with the fresh milk and eggs has sometimes been challenging with a toddler, preschooler, 5th and 8th grader.
I still wouldn’t change it though.
I just stumbled across your blog and am enjoying it. My family also lives in Wyoming, on a ranch 60 miles from town. We have a six year old boy and order our curriculum from Timberdoodle. They can go overboard on “extras” but I’ve really enjoyed their choices for core subjects. Spelling you see, math-u-see, The Reading Lesson, Phonics Pathways, and First Language Lessons. They are all very simple to implement with little to no teacher prep (so far at least). We’ve also been introduced to pathway readers this year and I adore them! They were written by the Amish and have simple stories for every stage of reader. Stories about farm life and family; very wholesome and sweet! We also supplement with a lot of library books and have story time almost daily.
I really enjoy hearing about what other families are using and how it’s working for them. I agree that at this age it’s important to focus on the basics but I am curious about implementing more science and history. Story of the world wasn’t our favorite this year. Perhaps we’ll try again next year? We’ve done various things things for Science and it’s my sons favorite subject! Since he loves it so much I’m on the hunt for a more complete curriculum for 2nd grade. Any suggestions would be appreciated!
Peggy Z says
So how do I figure out what we need to do to start? Our Grandson turns 5 in May, so we would start in the fall. Are there guidelines you have to follow for your state? Is there a site I could go to for getting started how tos?
Thank you so much for sharing and all the comments are very encouraging, especially Brian Marble. Thank you to if you can point me in the right direction.
Liz H. says
All 9 of our children have graduated from our homeschool. One thing I can’t recommend highly enough is the material put out by the Institute for Excellence in Writing. It’s one of those things I wish we’d found much sooner in our homeschooling adventure.
Elizabeth L. Johnson says
Glad your homeschooling is going so well. I am a grandma now, of 3 homeschooled grandchildren! I homeschooled our own 3 for altogether 22 years, kindergarten through high school. It was a challenge, but I never have regretted it. I used Saxon, and The Writing Road to Reading. Later on I used Alpha Omega lifepacs. Blessings!
We homeschool using Abeka curriculum for everything. I love it! My first grader is reading (by choice) 3+ 120-140 page chapter books a week! My 4 year old is also on a curriculum through them, and they even have a ‘learning colors’ for my 20 month old (essentially it’s just coloring one color each week, and we don’t do it every day, just days when he gets up to the table and wants to join in). It’s a somewhat pricey curriculum but in my opinion well worth it!
Great job! Keep up the good work with teaching your children throughout the day. It’s not an easy path, some days are easier than others and on those days allow your cup to overflow as the hard days will need that. *smile* By now you know that. *smile* We’ve been home schooling from the start and I’m so richly blessed in this season. We like using curriculum (Rod & Staff and then Christian Light Education) but we also like branching out a little with Climbing to Good English, Mystery of History and Latin, as well as the Charlet Mason memory box concept (we use it for Scripture memory and have added Spanish translations to some of our verses). It’s a matter of finding what works for your family and running with it. I wish you all the best in this journey. Our son, now 12 nearly 13, is finishing up ninth grade level CLE and our daughter who has just turned 11 is completing seventh grade level CLE and will do eighth grade level Rod and Staff next year except in Math where she will do CLE to prepare for high school in the same curriculum. Have a lovely day remembering to pray always as you count your many blessings. Sincerely, Mommy of two growing blessings & so much more!
Love reading what you are using and what others are using.. I am currently using All About Reading, we have had way more success than when we used Hooked on Phonics but my 9 year old still struggles, he struggles with writing also. I’m afraid my 7 year old would totally pass him if I actually had time to help him go faster. Is there anyway you could do a video showing how this Spell to write and read curriculum works?
Just found your blog….obsessed!! And I’m so happy you will be doing weekly YouTube videos!!! Yes, we do homeschool. We use A Beka ?
April Cleaver says
We homeschool too ? I’ve got a 7 year old, 4 year old, and a 9 month old. We use The Good and The Beautiful for all subjects right now. That helps keep it simple for me! We just built a house on 5 acres and have homesteading dreams so I was really excited to discover your blog! ?
Karen Vestal says
I love that I’ve ran across your page. First time homeschooler here and we are IN LOVE with our curriculum and it truly sounds like it’s one you’d want to check out because we are the same: simple. We use MasterBooks for math and language arts. The language arts does the same as yours- spelling, writing, reading, grammar, and even throws a Bible story in once a week. The lessons in both are SIMPLE and not overkill. Love it to pieces! And I’ve added the podcast you keep referring to my list to listen to on my drives! Thank you!
Hi there, I just listened to your most recent post on homeschooling curricula. I realize this blogpost was awhile ago, but I’m looking for information on math mammoth and I don’t know anyone doing it. Specifically, I’m wondering about the new common core alignment. Are you using a previous version, or a common core aligned version? And if you’re using the CC aligned version, what are your thoughts? I’ve got one who has been doing Saxon 6/5 and one who just finished Teaching Textbooks 4. It seems Math Mammoth would be a nice mashup of procedural and conceptual math which I like, but I’m nervous about a math curriculum aligned with common core. I don’t really want to teach a new way of doing math. Any insight?
Thanks for bringing this topic to light. In fact, I believe that homeschooling can be very effective, just like working from home. But this requires discipline and desire. It’s great when a child does not waste time and energy on the way to school and back, because this time he can spend on his development or activities that bring him pleasure. But it is also worth understanding that children must be socialized. And here it is necessary to find a balance. If the balance was found – well done!