Can you offer some curriculum recommendations? - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 6 Old 04-11-2011, 11:22 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Previously we have been using a relatively Classical-ish approach with History Odyssey and REAL Science Odyssey.  We have also done some unschooling and throwing other stuff in as fits us.  However, as a WAHM who is newly single I'm finding I need to step back my time involvement in schooling two kids.  We use Singapore Math and I'm really happy with that since the kids can sit down with it and get it done pretty much on their own.  I'd love some recommendations for quality curricula that would work similarly - with worksheets or workbooks so the kids can work independently for a time.  My kids will be in 4th and 1st grades next year and I'm hoping to find a good grammar/language arts program, and if it's also possible a history and science one which act more independently than the Odyssey ones.

 

Thanks!

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#2 of 6 Old 04-12-2011, 09:31 AM
 
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Would Sonlight work? Possibly FIAR, you can add in as much or as little as you need there. I'm not too familiar with the classical curriculums, so I'm not of much help, sorry!


 


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#3 of 6 Old 04-12-2011, 05:03 PM
 
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I have not used it, but I am considering the McRuffy Language and Reading/Spelling and Phonics special edition color workbooks.  They have secular versions available too.  I have used and like both Evan Moor language arts stuff and Spectrum workbooks.  From Evan Moor I like the Basic Phonics, Language Fundamentals and Vocabulary Fundamentals series.  I also use Spelling Workout, not for spelling but for general language arts.  For reading I like the Flash Forward Reading workbooks from Barnes and Noble.  Our 8 yo really likes the way the Spectrum workbooks are arranged and he likes working through a physical workbook (not pages printed from an ebook), and the Spectrum workbooks are very affordable, so he will be using those for language arts next year instead of the Evan Moor ebook.

 

For science, Singaporemath.com has the My Pals Are Here series.  I have the textbooks and the Homework book that has questions to answer.  It doesn't require much hands on time to work through the questions, and hands on time for experiments can be added when time allows.  I also like to read from the Real Science 4 Kids textbooks.  They are "real science" but written in language for younger kids and have great pictures.  Spectrum also has science workbooks but I have not used them yet.  Evan Moor has "Daily Science" workbooks. 

 

For history/geography I am just reading aloud from SOTW and I bought the book of tests and answer keys.  I don't give tests but the test questions are good for a review of what we read, or they could be used as worksheets.   I bought the history maps from Knowledge Quest to use with SOTW.  I am not into hands-on history activities and this keeps it simple for me.  Also Spectrum has geography workbooks.

 

For both history and science I have looked at the Odyssey series but I know I can't spend the time those would take right now.  Same with Nebel's science.  I have high hopes of being able to do these in a year or two but for now I need to streamline, and this works.

 

 

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Originally Posted by zebrabelly View Post

Previously we have been using a relatively Classical-ish approach with History Odyssey and REAL Science Odyssey.  We have also done some unschooling and throwing other stuff in as fits us.  However, as a WAHM who is newly single I'm finding I need to step back my time involvement in schooling two kids.  We use Singapore Math and I'm really happy with that since the kids can sit down with it and get it done pretty much on their own.  I'd love some recommendations for quality curricula that would work similarly - with worksheets or workbooks so the kids can work independently for a time.  My kids will be in 4th and 1st grades next year and I'm hoping to find a good grammar/language arts program, and if it's also possible a history and science one which act more independently than the Odyssey ones.

 

Thanks!



 


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#4 of 6 Old 04-12-2011, 05:42 PM
 
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How about using the audiobooks for SOTW for history? The Jim Weiss readings are nice, and it's completely hands-off for you. You could then use the test book as a PP suggested for review.

 

For phonics/spelling, we've enjoyed the Explode the Code workbooks. Easy to just open/go with these.

 

We have used a couple of different programs over the last year, and are now just piece-mealing our curriculum. We did use Sonlight and FIAR for a time. Sonlight took quite a bit of  my time b/c of all the read-alouds. If you could get your 4th grader to do the reading aloud parts, though, it could work :)

 

My kids loved FIAR...we did it during Pre-K and K years for my two. They still ask to re-read many of the books featured in the program. It is somewhat teacher intensive in that you have to decide on/prep all of the lesssons yourself. I typically did all of this on the weekend. Day-to-day, though, it would usually take us only an hour or two to get through the lessons.

 

Good luck!

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#5 of 6 Old 04-15-2011, 12:12 AM
 
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Also for grammar, you might want to look at Growing with Grammar. It's not as rigorous (in my opinion) as First Language Lessons (we've used both), but it is good, teaches diagraming, and it fairly independent. (When we used it, we did about a five minute lesson on the topic and then the boys worked on the pages themselves.) 


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#6 of 6 Old 04-21-2011, 10:31 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you everyone - this gives me a lot of good ideas to start from!  Off to research!

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