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Currently, for our curriculum, we are using K-12, free through our school district. It has been a great starting point for me. I was a little overwhelmed thinking of what to teach, how to teach it, what curriculum to use or not use. So, I decided to take the easy road for my first year. Overall, I don’t love it- I’ll be honest. I am much more for the hands-on interactive learning, as opposed to the sit at the computer & stare at a screen method. But, it has done the job for us this year. Things I like- easy, little, to no lesson planning, FREE! things I don’t love- having to check in weekly with a head teacher, taking attendance, quizzes, workbooks. The Kindergarten year was too easy for my son and we ended up skipping through so much of it. We are pretty much done already and it is only March!
Right now, we are also doing a free trial of Time4Learning. My kids love it- thinking it is all fun and games. They don’t realize how much they are actually learning. But, I hate the fact that they sit and stare at a computer screen for so long. I am certain I wouldn’t want to use it as our main curriculum, but as a fun supplement. (Also, just a little thing that bothers me, for some reason, the characters in the little videos call each other “dude”. I think that is such an annoying term.) However, at $20/month + $15 for each additional child, I feel like it is too pricey for a fun extra.
Since this is my first year homeschooling, I feel like I am still going through the trial & error period. I need to find what fits best for out family.
Things I am looking into for next year-
Life School– this is an all-in-one curriculum that is LDS based. It is all centered around the scriptures. All the subjects work in sync focusing on the same time period. It is a 4-year rotation of time periods- ancient history-current. This curriculum is used by the Maeser Academy homeschool program. You can purchase the curriculum and do it on your own or do it through the academy & be accredited. This school has won some awards recently for academics & is pretty highly acclaimed. It is kinda expensive, though.
The Four Year Plan– curriculum guide by Ken & Teri Ebert at Kindred Learning. This is also a 4-year plan based on LDS scripture & is much more cost effective. The biggest problem I have seen is that a lot of the resources they recommend are outdated &/or out of print. So, they are harder to find. They have a month-by-month plan all mapped out & it seems pretty simple to follow. It includes history, science, & writing in the curriculum guide. I purchased the first book, Going in Circles from Amazon, and I really like the whole concept of it.
The third thing I am looking into- based on acceptance- is Harmony Education. It is a charter school that funds any curriculum choices for homeschoolers, however, you do not get to keep them, the school does. It also funds some extra curricular courses as well, I think. I am not too sure on all the details, but I am on their waiting list for next year.