Curriculum Open House 2013/14

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One of my favorite things about heading into the fall is being able to read the plethora of blogs about what every family is using for school in the coming year. You see I am a self-professed curriculum junkie. I’ve tried- and discarded- many more curricula that some people have ever used. I also love to list what we are using for the year because it helps me to organize my thoughts. Now, I have a few caveats before I begin my list.

1. We do some school year round. So when I refer to a new school year, I don’t mean “Back to School” in the sense that traditional (and some homeschool) schools do. This year has been unique because my children are older and have been more involved in a variety of things throughout the summer, so we haven’t done nearly as much school. We have still worked through different review items that I’ve had. But we haven’t had a regular, set school schedule. Our school year has typically began in June and ended in May. But because of our summer, this school year is going to start in August, and I will probably move to a schedule that causes us to end in July- finishing up our primary curricula in May and doing review or extra work in the summer.

2. There are some subjects that we do together and some that are independent. This year Kathryne is mostly independent for high school. When I list the curricula, I’ll only list the “together” stuff once and just note that.

3. I am using My Father’s World this year for the first time. This is a big step for me. I’ve been an eclectic homeschooler through most of our homeschooling years. And the thought of having lessons planned for me is both a relief and a scary thought. I am either going to love this or hate this. So far, while I’ve been doing lesson planning, I’m leaning toward the love this.

So here goes:


* My Father’s World covers history, Bible and literature. She is in the ancients time period.

* Science- Apologia Biology. I have also ordered the lesson plans from My Father’s World.

* Math- Life of Fred. This is our first year with Life of Fred, so she and Charles are both beginning with Pre-algebra with Biology and will continue on through pre-algebra and algebra.

* Health- Nutrition 101 and the last book in the God’s Design for Sex series. Nutrition 101 is a health/nutrition/biology curriculum that I found at the homeschool convention. It can be used by the whole family but has activities that make it complete enough for a high school credit. We are going to use it all together, but I am going to assign the extras to Kathryne so that she earns a credit. Our graduation requirements state that health has to include teaching about human reproduction- thus the God’s design for Sex book. Even though she knows this already, she is less than thrilled that it has to be in her curriculum.

* Logic- The Thinking Toolbox and The Fallacy Detective. These are recommended by My Father’s World. We’ve actually read The Fallacy Detective together, but combined, these books make a half elective credit.

* Foreign Language-Kathryne wants to learn American Sign Language. I am going to use these free lessons for her first year’s credit. Since two years are recommended for college, I will have to find an advanced class for next year.

* Grammar– Analytical Grammar. Kathryne has one more section to finish in Analytical Grammar.

* In addition- Kathryne and I are directing our preschool choir at church this year. I am giving her an early childhood elective credit for this. She plans on participating in volleyball again. She is also possibly helping in our AWANA program again. She’ll be in the highest age group for Fun Friday- our biweekly co-op. I’m not sure yet exactly what classes that group will take. We only meet twice a month, so I’m not sure anything we do can be an elective credit.


* My Father’s World will cover history, Bible, literature, music, and art. We are going to be in the Rome to the Reformation time period (picking up where we left off with last year’s history curriculum.)

* Grammar- Analytical Grammar. Charles also has one season of Analytical Grammar left.

* Science- Apologia’s Physical Science. Charles started over with this in the middle of the year last year after we had issues with science and tried something different for a while. He is using the student notebook which is so nice and makes science go so much more smoothly for him!

* Math- Life of Fred. Charles is also going to begin with Pre-algebra with Biology and continue on into algebra.

* In addition- Charles cannot decide what sport to pursue this year. He played basketball pretty intensively through the fall and winter and has played with the team on and off this summer. He’s not wild about basketball, though, so he’s a little up in the air. He is going to help Kathryne and I in preschool choir this year. He’s also going to continue to do the middle school choir at church. He’ll be in the oldest group for Fun Friday’s co-op also, so I’m looking forward to seeing what they’ll do this year.

Ashlyne and Rachel:

* They will both be be using the same My Father’s World material as Charles. We are using the multi-age material for the three of them while Kathryne works independently for high school.

* Math- Life of Fred. They are going to start at the beginning with Apples because I’ve heard that recommended. I anticipate that they will progress fairly quickly, so I bought the whole beginning set of books at the homeschool convention.

* Science- Apologia’s Flying Creatures of the Fifth Day. We’re going to study birds and flying insects. I’m also using the student notebooks with them. I used them with Astronomy last year and loved them.


* Grammar/Writing- Primary Language Lessons and Writing Strands. We are very Charlotte Mason in our style, and I didn’t focus on grammar much with my older two until 6th/7th grade. It has worked out very well. But My Father’s World recommends using Primary Language Lessons and also Writing Strands. I purchased them and really like the way they look.

* Latin- Prima Latina. I began Latin with Kathryne and Charles about 4th and 5th grades and used Latin for Children. But, I had the opportunity to review Prima Latina with Ashlyne and Rachel and loved it. We’ll be using it this year to begin Latin. The three younger kids also will be using English from the Roots Up along with their My Father’s World. It contains Greek and Latin roots.

* In addition- I’m going to teach Ashlyne and Rachel cursive- which I’ve avoided up until this point- using the Prescripts book from Classical Conversations. I reviewed it recently and really liked the gentle style. Ashlyne and Rachel will both be in choir and AWANA at church. And they will both participate in Fun Friday co-op.

Ashlyne is still heavily involved in gymnastics and will compete again this year. Rachel has an interest in continuing ballet this year. But she has also thought about swimming more seriously. She’s done the summer swim team for two years and really enjoys it.

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