There are so many different ways to homeschool – almost as many ways to school as there are homeschoolers. It can be overwhelming, especially to a new homeschooler {though, even veterans aren’t immune}. When something isn’t working the vast amount of homeschool curriculum choices available can be overwhelming.

 

Homeschool Curriculum Choices {ages 11, 7, 5, 1} via www.RaisingLifelongLearners.com

 

All throughout the year, bloggers and homeschoolers share their own homeschool curriculum choices with one another. And, while I think there’s a value in knowing what others are doing, I worry that new or unsure homeschool moms will begin to think they don’t measure up. Or that they’re not doing things the right way. Or that they need to do what someone else is doing.

And so I hesitate to share the specifics about homeschool curriculum choices in our home, because the bottom line is – every family, every parent, every child is different. And what works for me may not work for you.

But it might.

And, since I’m often asked to share how we do things, and what exactly we do, I’ll attempt to honor that request.

As long as you remember that this works for now in my home. {It’s likely to change this year at some point, and probably will look different next year.} Parenting flows in seasons, and homeschooling is parenting on steroids. Things need to be changed up regularly.

Here are the homeschool curriculum choices that we’re planning on for the coming year, with links to posts where I’ve discussed the reasons behind those choices more in-depth.

 

Homeschool Curriculum Choices via www.RaisingLifelongLearners.com

Together Work

I really like the kids to work together on as much as they can so we have incorporate field trips and have great conversations at the dinner table. The following materials will be used as a family, but brought up or down as we need to for individual learning levels:

Homeschool Curriculum Choices via www.RaisingLifelongLearners.com

 

 

The kids will also have a few individual responsibilities:

 

Middle School

Trevor would be a sixth grader if he still went to a traditional brick and mortar school. However, because he is twice-exceptional, and his abilities have developed asynchronously, he doesn’t look like a typical sixth grader. I love that homeschooling offers us the opportunity to be flexible in our homeschool curriculum choices.

We decided that he needs to have more buy-in to his education, and must be given the opportunity to take more responsibility for his learning, so I met with him to determine his personal interest-based curriculum for the upcoming year.

He’ll be using:

  • The Kano Computer Kit that we bought from a Kickstarter campaign last year to build his own computer, learn basic code, and design & program video games. {Though, as of right now, production is delayed and we’re looking at some of the other Raspberry Pi computer kits on Amazon. I’ll keep you posted as he has plenty to do for the first month or two without us worrying too much over the delay.}
  • Help Your Kids With Computer Coding from DK publishing. This book is SO kid friendly and easy to follow, that he’s able to use it himself as a springboard to more difficult things.
  • The LEGO Mindstorms EV3 we already have but have not used at all like we could. He’ll be working through the tasks that came with the kit, as well as programming it according to two books we have. Finally, he’ll be given regular challenges to complete, as he likes to have his creativity ‘”kick-started” by mom and dad.
  • We’ll also be beginning the Classical Writing Program with Aesop. I showed this to Trevor last year and we did a few of the lessons, and he and I both enjoyed it. So, we’ll be doing it as it’s intended this year, which will give him some writing practice, as well as a deeper love of classical literature.

Homeschool Curriculum Choices via www.RaisingLifelongLearners.com

Elementary School {Grades 1/2}

Another asynchronous learner, Molly will be doing mostly first and second grade this year with a few kindergarten themes thrown in so she can learn {play} alongside her sister. If she were entering into a public school, because she has a late summer birthday, she’d have been going into first grade this year.

She’s completed first grade math, reads well – but lacks confidence, and grasps new concepts easily. We’ll be using a mixture of interest-based materials, but will be focusing on getting her to be a confident reader this year.

She’ll be using:

Homeschool Curriculum Choices via www.RaisingLifelongLearners.com

Preschool/Kindergarten

Logan is a challenge. She’s very bright, but her sensory issues get in the way of many things we try to do. She’s also very hyperactive and has a short attention span. We’ll be working with her to lessen some of those challenges, and prepare her to last for longer and longer periods of time. Preschool at home will be a lot of fun.

We joined a second co-op for the coming year. The one we’ve belonged to for a few years now is great, but it only meets 12 times a year for half the day, and offers play-based enrichment classes. The kids love it, and I enjoy teaching about science. But I felt that two of the kids, Logan being one, needed a bit more consistent structure this year.

She’ll be taking a preschool class at this co-op where she’ll have the same teacher and classmates for 5 hours each week {with a break for lunch with me} and will learn around rotating themes. She’s thrilled. And, frankly, so am I . She’s an adorable, energetic, loving kiddo, but she can be exhausting. The chance to have her learn from another teacher for a few hours a week will be good for both of us.

In addition to co-op and games around the house, Logan will do some formal Kindergarten work because she’s capable, and sitting at the table with her siblings is good for all of them.

She’ll be using:

Homeschool Curriculum Choices via www.RaisingLifelongLearners.com

Tot School

We’ll have a toddler wreaking havoc in our school this year. No more strapping him in the exersaucer so we can get things done without interruptions. Isaac is convinced that he can do everything his older siblings can do, so he’ll want to have some time at the table cutting, pasting, sorting, and coloring.

We’ll be working that in, along with tot trays – simple activities set up on the bookshelf on a tray that I rotate each week. There are many strategies to help keep your toddler occupied, engaged, and not forgotten about while you school the big kids.

 

Big-Book-promo-3

 

And there you have it, an incredibly long post about what I’m doing in my homeschool this year with my kids, and what our homeschool curriculum choices are.

If you’re looking for more amazing ideas about anything homeschooling – from everything preschool through high school, across all subject areas, and encouragement for those hard days – you need to check out The Big Book of Homeschool Ideas. $10.99 for an immediate eBook download with 560+ pages of tips, ideas, and encouragement from 55 veteran homeschool moms {including me!} about 103 different topics.

 

colour pencils

 

And, don’t miss the other Not Back to School Curriculum posts linked up at the iHomeschool Network’s annual blog hop. So many amazing bloggers from which to glean ideas.

link up

Colleen Kessler

Colleen is an explorer, tinkerer, educator, writer, creator, and a passionate advocate for the needs of gifted and twice-exceptional children. She has a B.S. in elementary education, a M.Ed. in gifted studies, is a sought-after national speaker and educational consultant, and is the founder of the popular blog and podcast Raising Lifelong Learners, as well as Raising Poppies, a community of support for parents of gifted children. She lives in northeast Ohio with her four bright and quirky kiddos, patient husband, and ever-changing collection of small reptiles, mammals, and insects.