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What is the worst educational/HS item you've ever bought?


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#401 Martha

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Posted 18 December 2012 - 09:15 AM

Oh adding Lukeion Greek. Poor interface and almost no feedback. What a waste.

#402 54879525

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Posted 18 December 2012 - 09:16 AM

I have more to add....GWG and WWW (especially WWW). I am so utterly bummed by this.

#403 MamaHappy

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Posted 18 December 2012 - 11:12 AM

I have more to add....GWG and WWW (especially WWW). I am so utterly bummed by this.

What did you not like about these? Please do tell. :)

#404 LBoogie

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Posted 18 December 2012 - 01:21 PM

I have this image of everyone on this board buying and reselling the same copies of "Teach Your Child to Read in 100EZ Lessons" and Saxon Math to each other on Ebay.

#405 BigMamaBird

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Posted 18 December 2012 - 02:26 PM

I was really disappointed by Soaring with Spelling. We loved Growing with Grammar, but SWS just flopped for us.

#406 54879525

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Posted 18 December 2012 - 02:56 PM

What did you not like about these? Please do tell. :)


Some parts are busy work. Some parts are too vague. Most parts are quite boring. The language in it feels very dumbed down. The way some things are explained is confusing.

It's hard to sum up my dislike for these books without writing a book about it.

We got midway through level 2 and I finally told my 7 year old we are moving onto something else. He said, "Noooo I want to do these books." So I dragged myself through a little longer (since he seems to hate everything we do for school work). Finally I had it and said we are moving on. He was all upset. I asked him why he liked the books so much. He said, "The books are so easy and I don't have to learn anything." Yeah, not what I want to hear.

We moved onto MCT and at first he was resistant, but quickly after he liked it (despite learning stuff).

#407 NittanyJen

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Posted 18 December 2012 - 03:19 PM

"The books are so easy and I don't have to learn anything." Yeah, not what I want to hear.

We moved onto MCT and at first he was resistant, but quickly after he liked it (despite learning stuff).



Precisely this. Even when the student is placed at the proper level, containing aspects of grammar he does not yet know, it is possible to fill out the workbook without any understanding-- they are pretty formulaic, and the answers are so predictable the student can score 100% on both workbook pages and tests with zero understanding. This was the case with my son, even though he is a generally attentive student who enjoys being challenged.

We also switched to MCT, and he can now take apart any sentence, understand why it works well, or how to improve up on it, name the parts of speech, parts of the sentence, point out poetic devices being used, explain how different types of phrases add or detract from the particular sentence in question, and is starting to employ what he has learned in his own writing-- at long last. As an added bonus, the coordination between the grammar, poetics, and vocabulary is fantastic.

We'll be trying the literature component in the spring. DS11 has been using the Magic Lens level 1 (following the GWG experiment), and DS9 has been using Town level (following R&S 3) and both are doing very well with it. I'd put MCT in the "great buy" column. It is very teacher intensive, but I don't regret a moment of my time or money investment in this one.

#408 Alessandra

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Posted 18 December 2012 - 07:27 PM

Bible felts -- what was I thinking???
I hid it because I knew dc would lose all the pieces.
I honestly thought I would get it out to supplement lessons. Well, it's been six plus years....

This was during our preschool period when I thought that I was a better mom for buying so much stuff.
I also thought dc would learn by osmosis, just because educational materials were in the house... somewhere.

#409 BatmansWife

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Posted 20 December 2012 - 03:14 PM

I was post # 48 two years ago. I can add a few more:

Soaring with Spelling

Pictures in Cursive (I tried Queens a 2nd time and now I have learned!!)

How to Teach Spelling

Learning Language Arts Through Literature

#410 deeinfl

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Posted 20 December 2012 - 03:46 PM

A few that I can remember were: Beyond Phonics (no directions, completely vague), 100 Easy Lessons (made my little boy cry), Saxon Math, Writing Strands--tried several times, Sing Spell Read and Write...none of my children liked the songs, Miquon Math--it was a guessing game for all of us, and I'm sure there are a few others I will remember later, but these are the absolute worst for us.

#411 LMD

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Posted 20 December 2012 - 04:00 PM

I've used 100 EZ lessons with two very different learners who are both now very, very advanced readers. Love it!

But from homeschooling group to group and board to board, there are, it seems to me, definite cultures, with group favorites and trends, and there certainly seems to be an anti-100EZ bias amongs WTM-ers!

I wonder if there'd be the same feeling if OPGTR wasn't available?


With OPGTR in the picture, it's sort of like preferring CHOW to SOTW around here, LOL!

Oh, and we like LLATL too - another on the "most-hated" list! Now, the Blue and Red books were busts but my ds has really liked the Tan and Green books. The lessons are quick but over the course of the year quite thorough except for writing, and my ds has really solidified his grammar with the diagramming instruction this year.


Lol, we love LLATL here, especially Blue & Red. I'm so not Hive cool :crying:

Worst item for me, Handbook of Nature Study. I don't think I've ever even opened it. I didn't even think when I bought it, we don't live in north america, we have different nature here to study. :blush:

#412 MamaHappy

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Posted 20 December 2012 - 04:06 PM

Worst item for me, Handbook of Nature Study. I don't think I've ever even opened it. I didn't even think when I bought it, we don't live in north america, we have different nature here to study. :blush:


Same here. I think I just need to give that book away, it's just taking up space on my bookshelf!

#413 MrsMe

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Posted 20 December 2012 - 05:47 PM

Emma Serl's Intermediate Language Lessons. One of those things you look at and wonder what in the world you're supposed to do with it! Blech!

And Teach your child to read in 10ez ...whatever it's called. I opened it and shut it. What a gimmick!

#414 BatmansWife

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Posted 20 December 2012 - 07:03 PM

Emma Serl's Intermediate Language Lessons. One of those things you look at and wonder what in the world you're supposed to do with it! Blech!

And Teach your child to read in 10ez ...whatever it's called. I opened it and shut it. What a gimmick!


Wouldn't that be awesome....but instead there are 90 more lessons. Bummer! :lol:

I actually didn't mind it too much. I used that to teach my 20 year old to read. She's an awesome reader. But....there are much better books to teach reading now. That was way back when.....

#415 Beth in TN

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Posted 23 December 2012 - 08:41 AM

LLATL - not enough litersture, grammar and spelling very light, book study questions were more to make sure the book was read and not good for discussion

Saxon Math - spiral method not a good match for my daughter and she really struggled with the mix of algebra ans geometry

Writing Strands - assignments didn't have enough instruction, dd thought some of the were "dumb", without the Evaluating Writing book I was lost on how to grade her work.

Streams of Civilizations - just plain boring



#416 Ohmomjacquie

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Posted 23 December 2012 - 12:12 PM

Bju distance learning. Dd wanted it and was excited by it. Found our she is not independent at all and was just pausing when the teacher said to but doing none of the workthey said to do. Great program for children who can can be independent. Videos were great and so us is the curriculum. Just not a gods for dots

#417 hippiemommy

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Posted 23 December 2012 - 12:29 PM

Mine are 100EZ Lessons and MFW 1st grade

#418 Homeschool Mom in AZ

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Posted 23 December 2012 - 05:31 PM

Teach Your Child To Read in 100 Easy Lessons (100 EZ Lessons)

It was so bad I couldn't in good conscience give or sell it to anyone, so it went directly into the garbage can.

Homestart in Reading by Ruth Beechick (for using real books to teach reading) and Phonics Pathways were what I liked best.

Institute for Excellence in Writing (IEW)

I found it a crime against nature for natural writers and only theoretically useful for those struggling, because it was so extremely formulated. An hour into it I was almost willing to stick an ice pick into my hears just so I didn't have to hear Andrew Padewa anymore during the day of my life I sacrificed to that video workshop. He took 3 times longer than necessary giving barely better than nothing suggestions between lame folsky "humorous" stories.

Now that I think about it, the same person recommended both 100 EZ Lessons and IEW to me.

Writing With Ease (WWE) and Writing With Skill (WWS) by Bauer are so much better for both struggling and natural born writers.

Jeff Foxworthy, Garrison Kellior, Bill Engval, Tim Hawkins, Bob Smiley, Andy Griffith....... are all better at funny folksy humor.

Story Starters by Andreola

Sure, in theory it sounds like a good idea to use pictures to prompt writing, but if you don't happen to be interested in Victorian style pictures then this book has nothing else for you. It's a good idea one dimensionally executed. A wider variety of imagery and artistic styles would have been better for a wider audience.

#419 s.z.ichigo

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Posted 25 December 2012 - 11:57 PM

Wow, so much hate for Saxon math! It seems to be a very "love it or hate it" program. You're either in the Saxon cult, or your not. It works very well for us.
However, the K-3 books are VERY scripted. As a first time homeschooler, though, I needed that. If I had another to teach, I would probably do K-3 on my own, now that I am more confident in knowing what I'd need to cover. It got to the point where I was going to scream if I had to chart the weather ONE MORE TIME.

Some things I did NOT like at all:

History Odyssey. I think I used this in second or third grade. It was a mess, and so not worth the money.

R.E.A.L. Science. Used in first grade. Awful illstrations. I swear I remember them depicting sea-stars with googly eyes.

Writing Strands. Maybe she just wasn't old enough, but it was just boring step-by-step instructions, and no real learning seemed to happen.

Slow and Steady, Get Me Ready Spend an hour creating an elaborate craft out of cardboard boxes, tubes, and plastic cups so that I can do a 5 minute activity with my 6-month old? No, thanks! This book really felt like I was programming a machine. "Develop this skill at 12 months, 4 days, and 13 hours old or your child will spend the next 50 years drooling in a corner because you didn't do enough" was the impression that book left me with.

#420 mathwonk

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Posted 26 December 2012 - 12:53 AM

the pitiful 43 page pamphlet "polyhedron models for the classroom", by magnus wenninger, not to be confused with his marvellous 200 page cambridge university press volume, "polyhedron models". who'd a thunk it could be done?

see my review on amazon:

http://www.amazon.co...howViewpoints=1

and to be honest, after buying both, the AoPS pre-algebra was a waste of money in comparison to the much more fun, attractive, and equally substantive and challenging Harold Jacobs Elementary Algebra.

#421 acsnmama

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Posted 26 December 2012 - 01:40 PM

We didn't like Horizons Math, 100EZ (purchased again, and still don't like it), Scott Foresman Social Studies, FLL

#422 Walking-Iris

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Posted 26 December 2012 - 03:14 PM

So far we have been pretty lucky that everything we have tried has worked very well ----more or less. Even Saxon math. Although this year Saxon 5/4 is the first time we've done Saxon. My son likes it. I like how independent it has made him with his work.

The only thing we tried that I seriously wanted to burn was Writing Strands. I had the first four books and even the pre K-1st grade oral language guide and CD. I gave them all away. My son was bored to tears. I tried tweaking, which I'm pretty good at. But nope. Horrible. Hideous. For a family of writers it was a disaster to even attempt it. I switched midway through last year to WWE and added Bravewriter and we are so much happier.

When my oldest was learning to read in K,I tried 100EZ and then tried Alphaphonics. I liked the concept of WRTR, but couldn't make heads or tales of it. I finally just got a very old used copy of Why Johnny Can't Read and started doing the lessons in the back coupled with ETC and mommy-made games and manipulatives. So much better.

I'm doing the same with my current Kinder. I am using OPGTR with him also. And we hate it! I just despise all of those scripted teach your kids how to read books. They seem like they're patronizing. Gently telling idiots what to say or do so their precious children can learn how to read. That's my impression. All that extra text on the page is distracting to the little kids too. I skip so much. Basically I have to rewrite every lesson in a different format so my Kinder can read it and get practice writing and working with his hands as well. That's the main issue I have with all those books. It's so boring and even developmentally inappropriate to just sit there and read from a teacher manual (which they are essentially) like that.

Some color! Some activities! Some writing practice! Some games! Anything but sit there and follow along with that ridiculous script.

I have also hated nearly every single teacher manual I have ever bought. I also think I may have lost my curiosity and fascination with Oak Meadow. So far the few things I have tried from them have been disappointments.

(I'm not sure, but I am slightly worried that I may hate FLL when I try it next year.)

#423 Holly

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Posted 26 December 2012 - 07:25 PM

Where were all these bad Writing Strands reviews before I purchased the book? It was our most recent flop.

Others include:
100 EZ lessons
Rightstart Math
Saxon Math
PLL/ILL

I also can't stand light religious material which is all our church seems to publish. :001_rolleyes: You know, the curricula where the answer to every single question is either God or Jesus. I also can't stand overly scripted material...I don't like being told what to say word-for-word.

We love Apologia elementary books and ETC though...to each his own. ;)

#424 Kathy G

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Posted 27 December 2012 - 05:44 PM

I wouldn't necessarily call it bad curriculum, More like bad fit for us

Saxon Math and BJU Reading

Both drove us nearly to tears. I think it is funny to have this list as some of the products were things we loved! What a blessing that we have so many choices!

#425 NoPlaceLikeHome

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Posted 27 December 2012 - 09:43 PM

I have more to add....GWG and WWW (especially WWW). I am so utterly bummed by this.


What is WWW? :tongue_smilie:

#426 mathwonk

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Posted 27 December 2012 - 10:04 PM

maybe this forum confirms my claim that teaching and learning is a cooperative enterprise or "marriage" between the two participants, and hence no teacher and no book is best for all learners. There needs to be a fit, and it takes experimentation to find a good one. It reminds us there is no such thing as a "good book" - rather there are detailed books, illustrated books, example oriented books, problem oriented books, axiomatic treatments, discovery treatments, etc, etc..., but each of these aspects is good for some and not so good for others of us.

thus it is crucial to ask why programs someone calls "great", or "beautiful", or "perfect", are considered so. This reminds me that once I avoided for years a book my roommate told me his brother thought awful, until one day I was required to read it. it was one of the clearest most scrupulously accurate and instructive books I had ever seen. When I asked him what his brother disliked about it, and he inquired, it turned out his brother had actually said the book was too detailed for his taste, exactly the quality I appreciated.

#427 VeritasMama

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Posted 27 December 2012 - 10:39 PM

SOTW, vol. 1 - I was more than disappointed that anyone would use bible stories and call them history, but I was glad I gave vol. 2-4 a chance because those were pretty good.


I just need to respectfully say, in defense of SWB and SOTW1, that many Bible stories are also mentioned and recorded in other texts, so they can be considered as valid a history as other religious texts that are also mentioned in SOTW, such as the accounts of Buddha or the story of Gilgamesh. I do not take all the stories in the Bible as 100% historically accurate, but many of the books were written by the Israelites in order to record their oral history. Just as I do not think that there was a wizard named Merlin or that a sword named Excalibur had some kind of divine power, I do believe there must have been a king in Britian named Arthur around whom rose many folk legends, and so the Arthurian legends do warrant some historical study. The discovery of the historical city of Troy is another lesson to us that ancient legends were based on historical facts.

My point is that I think your statement was a bit too broad. Even if you exclude the accounts in the Bible for which we have no other historical record, many Bible stories are accurately defined as history as they are also recorded in historical sources outside the Bible and are recorded by various languages/cultures.

The point is that you should not be "disappointed that anyone would use bible stories and call them history," because many of the stories in the Bible are recognized as historically accurate by historians because of the simple fact that archeology and the historical record as a whole have confirmed that they are.

Hijack over.

#428 Something

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Posted 27 December 2012 - 11:58 PM

I just need to respectfully say, in defense of SWB and SOTW1, that many Bible stories are also mentioned and recorded in other texts, so they can be considered as valid a history as other religious texts that are also mentioned in SOTW, such as the accounts of Buddha or the story of Gilgamesh. I do not take all the stories in the Bible as 100% historically accurate, but many of the books were written by the Israelites in order to record their oral history. Just as I do not think that there was a wizard named Merlin or that a sword named Excalibur had some kind of divine power, I do believe there must have been a king in Britian named Arthur around whom rose many folk legends, and so the Arthurian legends do warrant some historical study. The discovery of the historical city of Troy is another lesson to us that ancient legends were based on historical facts.

My point is that I think your statement was a bit too broad. Even if you exclude the accounts in the Bible for which we have no other historical record, many Bible stories are accurately defined as history as they are also recorded in historical sources outside the Bible and are recorded by various languages/cultures.

The point is that you should not be "disappointed that anyone would use bible stories and call them history," because many of the stories in the Bible are recognized as historically accurate by historians because of the simple fact that archeology and the historical record as a whole have confirmed that they are.

Hijack over.


Please, dear... save your lecture. :sneaky2: I am well aware of what is considered historically accurate and what is not. My Ph.D. is in a history field. MY point is that an entire volume rife with bible stories -- stories, not history -- yet calling itself a survey of Ancient History is, yes, disappointing.

#429 SCGS

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Posted 28 December 2012 - 09:26 AM

I've been trying to think about this and so far I guess I would have to name Spell to Write and Read as my personal worst purchase. I remember being overwhelmed with the feeling that if I didn't use it my child would be crippled in phonics and spelling. I tried to work through the compulsion to buy it based on that feeling but failed. Then I was determined to be one of the ones that actually succeeded in mastering the program but eventually admitted defeat. It was never up my alley. I was entirely contrary to my personal bent. It was ignorance of myself that led to such an expensive error on my part.



#430 texasmama

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Posted 28 December 2012 - 09:50 AM

Our biggest flop was Sonlight language arts in second grade and third. We love the history and literature portions of the Core and are on our 6th Core, but the language arts was not developmentally appropriate, was disorganized (all over the map) and just bombed with my kids. We switched to FLL and WWE and were much happier. I wish I had not given a year and a half to SL's language arts, but I was stubbornly "trying to make it work". I know better now. :)

#431 laura291

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Posted 28 December 2012 - 01:15 PM

BJU Math 6 DVDs. A few things about it: 1) It's from the 1990's so the teacher looks so old fashioned, however she is VERY sweet and easy to understand, 2) There is a LOT more than just math discussed. A lot of character and bible, not that those are bad things at all, but when we were focused on Math, it was distracting, 3) My son was using the BJU DVD while my daughter used the Saxon DIVE CD. She would finish hers in 20 minutes, my sons would drag on for an hour some days. He didn't like that. 4) It was soooo expensive! My biggest frustrationis that I got talked into "renting" the DVDs at the convention.

After a couple weeks of trying to enjoy the program, I decided to just eat the cost and buy a new program. I bought Saxon for my son with the DIVE CD (just like my daughter) and will never try a new Math program again! We LOVE Saxon!!

#432 VeritasMama

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Posted 28 December 2012 - 02:01 PM

Please, dear... save your lecture. :sneaky2: I am well aware of what is considered historically accurate and what is not. My Ph.D. is in a history field. MY point is that an entire volume rife with bible stories -- stories, not history -- yet calling itself a survey of Ancient History is, yes, disappointing.


Sorry for coming off as a lecture, I see what you are saying I simply don't think it applies to SOTW. Myths and legends and stories that seem too fantastical for us to believe is exactly how the ancients recorded their own history, so how do you study them without including it? That is why I appreciate the fact that SWB includes myths and historical legends from so many other world cultures. I suppose I was puzzled as to why you would single out the Bible, as there are myths and stories from other cultures and religions which we can not confirm with 100% accuracy, but are still presented as "history." Perhaps if the stories had disclaimers it would bother you less, if they were presented more as a story than a history? Maybe there was some bias towards the Bible stories, I admit I don't really remember the way they were presented, as I would usually provide plenty of historical context and supplements to the chapters myself, so the context SWB provided wasn't as much of an issue for me, the book was more of an outline for us.

#433 mathwonk

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Posted 28 December 2012 - 07:48 PM

The history vs bible story conundrum is another case of where plain vanilla descriptions of a book although helpful, can be quite difficult to achieve. Perhaps the meaning of the word "history" has changed over the years, and biblical accounts, as well as heroic fables which they somewhat resemble at times, were originally intended in all sincerity to be historical. As the reach of the scientific method grows, people re - examine previous "historical" accounts and some choose to revise them, others are more reluctant.

This is also true in mathematics, and what was called a "proof" in the 18th or 19th century may be called merely a plausibility argument today. We are always revising our view of history, even of science, but all previous accounts do play a useful role in that study. We like to know what we are getting under a given rubric, but that too changes.

I just mean one person can quite sincerely refer to a source by a certain word, and another person can quite as sincerely disagree as to the appropriateness of that word. We don't deny the other person the right to use a word differently, we just hope to understand them better.

I apologize, as we may be veering hopelessly off course. Sometimes difficult side issues like this deserve to be separated off as their own thread.

#434 kalanamak

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Posted 28 December 2012 - 08:11 PM

Sorry for coming off as a lecture, I see what you are saying I simply don't think it applies to SOTW. Myths and legends and stories that seem too fantastical for us to believe is exactly how the ancients recorded their own history, so how do you study them without including it?


It was the shift in tone. The Egyptians etc. just weren't so *personal*. Then suddenly this Abraham shows up and the history seems much more "eyewitnessy". A couple of pages into this and my 6 year asked me: is the writer of this book a Christian? To my mind we'd never discussed such things, and he would have perhaps asked if the writer was a Jew had he known what Jews were at the time.

There was a change in tone. Not a fatal problem, and I said yes, the writer was a Christian, and on we went. I don't think provided a positive model of Christianity, however. He'd been taken to church a few times by his dad, and decided this was just another example of obvious bias. And really, if you can sense it at 6, how could it not be obvious? (It could well not be obvious to a child being raised Christian who would just recognize the story and think the situation as standard operating procedure.)

I might also note we are reading History Odyssey this year, and once the story gets to the Old Testament, it has the same flare of Up Close and Personal that didn't seem the same for the life of the Buddha. This is perhaps a testament to how influential the Bible has been to Western writers of textbooks.

#435 Walking-Iris

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Posted 29 December 2012 - 10:28 AM

You can't study history without studying the stories and myths of that culture you're studying. These things still influence politics etc today. A well educated person needs a broad study of comparative religion. There's a slight shift in bias in SOTW. The Egyptians "believed" or "thought" the pharaohs were gods vs "God told Abraham." When we covered this area I just explained. But really it's not as biased as other programs and has no hint of a proselytizing agenda. Honestly I didn't find that the Bible stories were presented any differently than the Egyptian myths or Greek myths. And if we're to understand the course history took from the Ancient time until the present, we will need to understand the words written in the Bible and how they have been interpreted and used. One couldn't even really truly study literature without a knowledge of religious stories and myths. I wouldn't be comfortable using a more secular history program that downplayed or even eliminated Bible stories, even if there was one. I honestly believe the ills of society today are likely a fault of the lack of a truly unbiased religious studies program. Kids get very little intellectual instruction in the Bible (And any world religions tend toward fluffy feel good tolerance rather than real study)and then they're susceptible to any proselytizing (typically false) interpretation that may come their way.

#436 nmoira

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Posted 29 December 2012 - 11:20 AM

It was the shift in tone. The Egyptians etc. just weren't so *personal*. Then suddenly this Abraham shows up and the history seems much more "eyewitnessy". A couple of pages into this and my 6 year asked me: is the writer of this book a Christian? To my mind we'd never discussed such things, and he would have perhaps asked if the writer was a Jew had he known what Jews were at the time.

There was a change in tone. Not a fatal problem, and I said yes, the writer was a Christian, and on we went. I don't think provided a positive model of Christianity, however. He'd been taken to church a few times by his dad, and decided this was just another example of obvious bias. And really, if you can sense it at 6, how could it not be obvious? (It could well not be obvious to a child being raised Christian who would just recognize the story and think the situation as standard operating procedure.)

I might also note we are reading History Odyssey this year, and once the story gets to the Old Testament, it has the same flare of Up Close and Personal that didn't seem the same for the life of the Buddha. This is perhaps a testament to how influential the Bible has been to Western writers of textbooks.


This. And we also had talks about the Exodus and the lack of any supporting archaeological evidence, as well as the origins of the book. This is so often treated as fact, even in secular circles, because we've heard the story so often and seen the movie. :tongue_smilie: We treat the Bible stories just as the others, and I wish they had been treated so in the book. But you're right, it's not a fatal flaw.

I was also irritated that (paraphrasing) Mohammad was portrayed as living an upright life because he knew that was the way to get people to follow him, rather than because he was an upright man. I'm hope this wasn't intentional.

#437 Dealea86

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Posted 29 December 2012 - 03:07 PM

Luckily (so far) all of our flops have been with programs I didn't buy.

I borrowed 100 EZ from the library. It didn't even make it to DD. I browsed through the book and realized I was going to hate teaching from it. It went back to the library at the next possible opportunity. :glare: Yeah, I really hate scripted lessons. No teacher's manuals for me, thank-you-very-much. :laugh:

Also, a friend of mine was kind enough to lend me FIAR before I bought it. SO glad I tried it out first. DD enjoyed it okay, but the activities were either way over her head (she was only just three at the time), too contrived, or unmemorable. I found myself coming up with my own activities to do with the stories, and that completely defeats the purpose of buying the guide. And what's more, DD never asked to do it. She would ask (beg) to do reading and math lessons, or to have me read a book to her (of her OWN choosing), but she wasn't so excited about this. She's only three, no sense in doing preschool unless she asks for it, right?

What's worked for us:

Starfall (free)
Progressive Phonics (free)
Treadwell readers (free)
I Can Read It books (Sonlight uses these, I think?)
Ambleside Year 0 list (She's loved everything on it... except Winnie-the-Pooh. Go figure.)
Singapore Essential Math
Plaid Phonics workbooks
Kumon handwriting and D'Nealian preschool handwriting books

It's hard to believe it's such a long list when we've only been at this for a year or so. But the things that have worked have all been huge hits. DD is one of those preschoolers who begs to do school every single day....

#438 nansk

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Posted 30 December 2012 - 04:39 AM

...many of the stories in the Bible are recognized as historically accurate by historians because of the simple fact that archeology and the historical record as a whole have confirmed that they are.

Hijack over.


I am sorry to continue the hijack, but I am really interested to know more. Please share some books or web sites that describe the archeological artifacts that historians have concluded confirm the Bible stories. Thank you.

#439 stephg

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Posted 30 December 2012 - 09:16 AM

DS used WWW3 and GWG3 last year for a few months and then we threw them in the trash. I can see how they would work ok for others but they were not the right fit for my ds who likes to be challenged a little more than WWW and GWG provides. DS was getting 100% on everything in GWG but when I would ask him to pick out the different parts of speech in literature, he had a hard time. So we switched to KISS for just a few weeks but the program was just too confusing for me so we ditched that. Finally, I purchased MCT island level and we couldn't be happier. It is the perfect program for my LA loving ds. Every piece of the curriculum is engaging and challenging. It makes LA come alive for ds.

#440 dmmetler

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Posted 30 December 2012 - 01:00 PM

SL core 6. DD LOVED core 1 and 2, liked core 3 & 4. we skipped 5 because she wanted to go back to Ancients, and...well, core 6 just hasn't worked well. She'd already read SOTW, so it's nothing new for her, and she just plain doesn't like the historical fiction-so I'm letting her read a World history textbook, pick and choose projects from the SOTW activity guide, and enrolled her for an online Jr. Great Books discussion class for the Spring.

#441 kwg

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Posted 30 December 2012 - 02:42 PM

Brainology hands down. The absolute WORST!

Is that the math memorizing program? But the kid look so happy...lol. What is wrong iwht it?

oh , nm I was thinking of Brainetics *roll eyes*. Never heard of Brainology!

#442 VeritasMama

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Posted 30 December 2012 - 02:42 PM

I am sorry to continue the hijack, but I am really interested to know more. Please share some books or web sites that describe the archeological artifacts that historians have concluded confirm the Bible stories. Thank you.


I was not speaking of any particular Bible story presented in SOTW, I was trying to explain that you can not paint the entire Bible as a "myth" and you shouldn't use such a broad brush to describe it. Much of what is found in the Bible is confirmed in other contemporary sources and in that have been discovered by archeologists. Many of these sources were never lost, such as the accounts of some Romans on Herod and the temple, the writings of Josephus, etc. Tcitus and Pliny the Younger are Romans who both documented the early Christian movement, from a negative viewpoint. The point is that the existence of Jesus and his life and death, along with the activities of his early followers are well documented outside of the Biblical sources.

Archeological sites that appear to confirm some of the biblical accounts of the reign of King David and King Solomon have also been found recently. The remains of the city of Gezer, which is mentioned as a store city of Solomon have been found. Be'er Sheva is another city mentioned in the Bible that has recently been discovered. There is an archeologist who has claimed to have found Nehemiah's wall and what could be the palace of David in recent years, but these finds are disputed.

Many of the sites, books and sources documenting modern archeology in the Holy Land are not secular, so I don't think they would be considered credible or objective by non-Christians and so are not worth mentioning here. Most of the books I've read have mixed reviews, with some saying how excellent they are and others calling them out on their bias. Books on the subject are easy enough to find on your own, and I really did not intend to debate this subject here.

But I will suggest the Nova program http://www.pbs.org/w...archeology.html, as I found it interesting and I don't think it is controversial or biased.

There are still plenty of stories and events in the Bible that can never be proven and may not have happened. I'm not a literalist when it comes to the Bible, I'm not trying to say that archeology and history have proven the Bible to be 100% accurate. My only point was that you don't have to discount the whole thing to be considered a true historian, which is what the statement I was orginally replying to seemed to suggest, and that studying the Bible is a valid part of a study of history, if studied in the proper context.

I'm not going to comment on this again in order to end the hijack :).

#443 SFM

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Posted 30 December 2012 - 07:43 PM

online Jr. Great Books discussion class for the Spring.


What is this?

#444 elizsharp

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Posted 31 December 2012 - 01:00 PM

Where to begin?
Calvert K
Phonics Road
McRuffy First Grade everything
IEW PAL
Math U See Alpha
I could go on but that's a good start!

#445 JuanitaE

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Posted 14 January 2013 - 03:49 AM

We heartily disliked Latina Christiana - even after I bought the DVDs too! Doing much better with Lively Latin.

#446 alpha

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Posted 14 January 2013 - 11:06 PM

So many choices to choose from :)

WP American Story
Latina Christiana 1 and 2 (co-op torture)
Writing Strands
Muzzy German (my kids refused to watch it)


#447 Shelsi

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Posted 14 January 2013 - 11:44 PM

My kids are complete opposites and as such what is awesome for one kid turns out to be a total fail for the other. Best curriculum choice ever for ds was/is MUS. It's a total flop for my dd - I could see she would hate math forever if I kept pursuing it with her.

Curriculums I did not like:

Sing, Spell, Read, and Write. Made my ds cry and it was way too much writing for him. Possibly my dd would like it.

Independent K12 Language Arts 2nd grade. Over all it's solid but I discovered that I am not a "school at home" type and ds & I hated, hated, hated the worksheets even though we skipped at least half of them.

SOTW. Granted we never got very far in the first volume but I did not like the way it presented the Egyptians myths as myths and stories like Abraham as historical fact. My ds just plain hated it. He was SO bored with it & he didn't "get it" at all. As a 1st grader he could barely understand what "last year" meant let alone thousands of years ago. It confused him.

MCT did not work for us either although I suspect it will work for dd so I'm holding on to it. I can't say I really liked it though. Too flowy or something. I guess I'm more of a "get to the point" type person.

#448 elizabeth rose

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 07:59 AM

Both chow and story of the world failed here. Chow for talking to the kids in a tone that sounded babyish to them, and story for being too boring. Switched to WP and are much happier.

Of course, 100EZ lessons
prima latina
Rod and staff English after 6

#449 nurse_kris

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 07:24 PM

*MUS Alpha was awful for us. Luckily I resold it on ebay and got my money back :)

*Saxon 5/4. My DS hated it. He did complete it though and is a very "mathy" boy, but we had tears many days.

*ETC online, I liked it, but DD hated it. She did love the workbooks though.

*Singapore Math 1A/1B. Jumped around too much and didn't give enough problems to "get" a concept. Would be ok I suppose if you supplemented.

*Horizons Math. Another one that moved too fast IMO. .

*Apologia Zoology. I think this is way too advanced and boring for early elementary. Would be ok for older children.

#450 Mommyfaithe

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 07:26 PM

I have more to add....GWG and WWW (especially WWW). I am so utterly bummed by this.

Tried these this year. Never again. Big fat waste of time!


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