Any experience with either? I'm looking to buy one for September.
I am a fan of ENKI. I have been doing Enki for 4 yrs. I love Grade 1 Enki LA and Math stories. They now offer samples schedules that help alot to navigate thru Grade 1. Beth Sutton, the creator of Enki, spent many years on writing the Fairy Tales and the stories are written with such richer language than Live Ed.
There is a YAHOO Group Enki Experience which you can ask any questions and Enki. Also, there is a free pre-purchase phone conference call that you can find if Enki is a good fit. Here is a link. http://groups.yahoo.com/group/EnkiExperience/
I have Barbara Dewey's Form Drawing book and don't really care for it. I think one my purchases this year will be the one from Christopherus. From what I've heard with Christopherus is that it is more laid out but also more dry than Enki, which may or may not work for you. I think overall it is a very good program and a lot more detailed than others like A Little Garden Flower, but not as culturally rich as Enki. However, for the price, from what I've seen and heard it seems quite good. My quibble with Donna Simmons is that she is really quite saturated with Anthroposophy, which bothers me and I find it stifling. Enki is not.
Enki is by far my first choice. I bought Live Ed! a year before starting 1st with my oldest to take my time and look at it, and quickly decided it wasn't what I wanted. We ended up using Christopherus for most of Kindy and all of 1st, and although we enjoyed it, I felt it was very light and not quite rich enough. Although there are detailed instructions, it almost had an "overview" feel to me throughout. It just wasn't deep enough for us, though it did provide a nice gentle year that ds1 and I both enjoyed.
For 2nd we it the bullet and purchased Enki, and now that I have all the materials and am figuring ut the lay of the land, all I can say is I really wish I would have used this program for K and 1st. The stories really meet the child with where they are at developmentally. I've learned so much already about what my 7 1/2 yr old is experiencing and what he may be going through and we haven't even begun the year yet. And you can't find Nature stories for science in any other program. The Nature stories, in my opinion, are the best part of Enki.
I purchased Christopherus' From Nature Study to Science and it gave an overview of the way nature stories and crafts give a solid, developmentally appropriate foundation in Science and how to approach science in a holistic way with a young grades child, but it did not include really any actual stories. Instead it listed out-of-print nature story books to buy that I had great trouble tracking down. While on the search, my science and nature loving son was asking me more and more questions about science. Enki has beautiful, rich, detailed nature stories written by the director to use with your child. There is just nothing else out there like it, at least nothing that has turned up in my endless searching.
Also, not sure if you're aware, but the complete 1st and 2nd grade packages include full recorder lessons, songs, sheet music, and instructional dvd. Form drawing is also included. Of course, you may want to use another program for those elements, but just wanted to let you know in case you didn't realize that those elements are included.
Have fun with Enki, we are loving it!
I know the packages are expensive, and I really enjoy researching and digging for Waldorf materials so I never intended to pay so much for a curriculum, mainly because I would feel pressured to use it even if it wasn't a good fit. So I waited til this year (2nd grade) to take the plunge with my oldest and I only wish I would have done it sooner.
Beth knows a lot about child development and she hosts monthly calls that I try to always listen in on simply because they are great for understanding where my child is at and what he needs, even in terms of parenting and not necessarily academics. Buying a package also gets you access to the online community and it's been great hearing how other families implement Enki.
I just feel grateful this program exists and we are able to use it. There is so much included that has saved me a lot of time, though it is a very deep, rich program.
I've taken a peek at Live Education, and we're seriously considering using it for next year! I really like that it explained the significance things you were teaching. It is kind of like teacher training, and a curriculum for the child in one. I thought it would be too vague, but everything was all planned out you just plan the extra stuff and put together the blocks, the lessons are already there. I also love the support, and the packages customized for the child....
Yeah, I think the truth of the matter for me is that I will always supplement like crazy. It's just my nature!!! So, I'm sure I'll buy a few Live Ed books in addition. Too much choice.... What about the Spiritual Syllabus books by Alan Whitehead? Anyone have these? I hear people love or loathe his work.