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Homeschool advise wanted

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by fritz_monroe, Feb 2, 2008.

  1. fritz_monroe

    fritz_monroe Monkey+++

    We are seriously considering homeschooling our kids now. My 4 y.o. is in pre-K, so that won't be a huge change, but my 9 y.o. son is in catholic school, so would be a big change.

    We don't feel that they are challenging him accademically and observing him in class, he seems to be bored stiff. His teacher will give them the work to do, he will knock it out in about 5 minutes and go on to reading or something else, and 15 to 20 minutes later, the teacher goes on to something else. Part of the time he's so wrapped up in the book that he doesn't know they started on something else. Not a chance I'll put him into public school to be indoctrinated in the MD way.

    That said, we are exploring the various curriculum choices. Since this would be our first year, we are planning on sticking to one of the "boxed set" curriculums. We just feel that it would be easier to get into the swing of homeschool and then decide if we want to do the free form type of thing.

    So any curriculum recommendations? Anything that we should avoid? We will keep them in evening bible study, so any of the curriculum doesn't need to include bible study, but having it won't affect our decision.
  2. ColtCarbine

    ColtCarbine Monkey+++ Founding Member

    You might want to send a PM to Tracy or wildernessgal
  3. ozarkgoatman

    ozarkgoatman Resident goat herder


    I'll tell you homeschooling is way easier than most people think it is. We use everyday life to exsplain alot of things to our daughter. Math is very easy to do this with. There is much to learn just living life and it is things that they will really use when they get to be adults.

    We have The Original McGuffeys Eclectic Series, Ray's New Arthmetic, and Harvey's Revised English Grammar books. We payed about $200 for all of the books but it takes them from kindigarden to 12th grade. All of the books are very good. I was a machinest for 10 years and some of the math is harder than some of the stuff I use to use on a daily basis. We had read a review from a English Profesior on the Grammar books and he said that there was stuff in there that he didn't know.

    I don't have the web site for the books but WG does and she said she would post it later.

  4. fritz_monroe

    fritz_monroe Monkey+++

    Already sent to wildernessgal, will send to Tracy. Or maybe she will chime in before I can do that.
  5. melbo

    melbo Hunter Gatherer Administrator Founding Member

    Awesome site. We are planning to start this with our 13 month old when she is 3.
    It basically teaches kids how to learn rather than teaching them the data.

    Clyde sent me the link and the book and I spent hours reading up at the site.
  6. gillman7

    gillman7 Monkey+++

    Rod and Staff for English

    Saxon Math

    I enjoyed Konos timelines for History and Science
  7. Tracy

    Tracy Insatiably Curious Moderator Founding Member

    Yep! :D

    Each child has a different type of learning style. Find your child's style and they will succeed far beyond your expectations. Mine all learn differently. A challenge to teach, but rewarding beyond belief. There are as many curriculums as there are ways to learn. I can't say any of them are "bad", but some are more challenging than others. Some have different course offerings. Some are from books, some computer disk and some online.

    Every person that homeschools does it for different reasons. Decide what your reason is and the curriculum that fits best with your teaching style/schedule/time allocation and your child's learning style.

    Think about it: If you never had to raise your hand and wait to get your question answered, how quickly would you have learned each subject? If your teacher talked directly to you, if she taught you in the manner that you learned, how easily would success have come to you? IMHO, that's the "secret" to homeschool's success.

    As a homeschool teacher, you forget how basic each step of learning is when you have to think back to childhood learning levels (you should have seen my child a couple years back when beginning fractions... I was taking him far beyond what he was ready for... OOPS! "We'll discuss all the rest of the page in a while, right now, let's concentrate on the first line." :lol:). It's a learning process for us all. :)

    There are ups and downs; days I silently question if I'm doing the right thing. Then, seemingly on cue, you see the lightbulb "come on" above their little head. When they (finally) "get it", the feeling of pride and (joint) sense of accomplishment is more than I can describe. The answer is Yes! Yes, I am doing the right thing!

    Here is some of what I personally found in my quest for the right system for us:
    Calvert curriculum walks you (teacher) through what to say to explain different things to your student. I liked that it helpd me learn how to teach at that level. Calvert's information was rather basic (but I used it for for first/second grade, which might explain that) for the student. It was an easy introduction into home schooling for me. I don't think it's all that great if you have an accelerated learner. Some say that the science is dry. I say that they didn't try to make it fun. My child did 2 years of lessons in one school year (3 hours/day, 4 days/week). We switched from it.

    Alpha Omega's Switched on Schoolhouse is pretty good. Tougher curriculum. Computer based. Great graphics and information to keep the student interested and active in the learning process. Easy to use for teacher and student.

    Rosetta stone is a good language program. We've decided to try a new language every year.

    A dear friend has a video learner. She loves the program she's on (it's video-based). I'll ask the name.

    Seton is Catholic-based. Oak Meadow is holistic. Sonlight is literature-based, Christian. A Beka is Bible based. Clonlara is nonsectarian. The list just goes on and on...

    Most people I know use book-based curriculums. Some of them do Abeca math, but use Seton or Sonlight language arts. The sky's the limit and your choices are endless. Don't let it overwhelm you; you'll make the right choice. Nobody cares more about your child and his education more than you do. The hardest part is taking that first step... the rest comes naturally and you and your child will be running in no time!

    If you know anyone that homeschools, ask about the program they use. Caution: Don't lock yourself into that program. Again; everyone has different reasons (as adults) and different learning styles (as children). Just as in fishing; everyone thinks their bait is best, but it may not work for you.

    Here's a site that has many different types of curriculum listed. Check each of them out, it'll give you a base to start from. Then, at least you'll have some curriculum names to look up online and get more information from. http://www.homeschoolreviews.com/ I'm sure there are many other review sites out there. Don't use just that site; it doesn't list every curriculum you're looking at. Just some of them.

    I'm just a PM away. Please feel free to ask as many questions as you need to. Children, their education, and their safety is my passion.
  8. ghrit

    ghrit Ambulatory anachronism Administrator Founding Member

    The above is illustrative of the work involved in being a teacher. "Teach" has to study as much or more than the student to get the points across. I didn't do homeschool, but I did teach a couple courses along the way, and at times it was a challenge to stay one step ahead of the students. It was fun.
  9. fritz_monroe

    fritz_monroe Monkey+++

    Thanks for all the information. I'll continue my homework trying to figure out what we want. It is frustrating that for us to get our son in classes that will challenge him, we have to put him into a school system that we don't agree with.

    The hurdle in previous years was my wife didn't think that she could do it. She is seeing that she can, and there is more of an interest in doing it this year. We don't want the kids to get their hopes up in case we decide it isn't for us, so all that homework needs done has to be done when they aren't around.
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