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  1. We are getting ready to start R.E.A.L. Science Odyssey Life 1. I haven't used it yet, but it looks fantastically laid out. It starts each lesson with an information page that the kids put into a journal, and then continues on with lab instructions and a lab page(s). You can also purchase the harder-to-find lab materials here. It looks like a really hands-on curriculum, which my kids love. I am also considering using Building Foundations of Scientific Understanding for my spine. I have heard that this is very teacher intensive, but I have read the book and it looks like if you spend maybe 30 minutes on a Sunday evening preparing, you should be fine. If I do that, I will incorporate all levels of R.E.A.L. Science Odyssey (Life, Chemistry, and Earth and Space).
  2. FLL does have some review, so I would say you could skip to level 2. WWE, however, picks up the pace a little. I am in a similar position, trying to decide which level to start my soon-to-be 2nd grader. WWE 1 provides a lot of narration, whereas WWE 2 start up with dictation. If your child is writing and spelling pretty well, than level 2 should be ok.
  3. My DS is just under 4 and a half and he is in the process of learning his letter sounds. I have a subscription to Explode the Code online and he is beginning to sound out three letter words. HE also LOVES Teach Your Monster to Read. I am considering purchasing a structured reading program, but I am not sure that this is necessary. I could just purchase some beginning readers and some sight word cards, but I admit, the programs in a box look very attractive! I would love to hear some advice from those of you who have experience teaching your kids to read to find out what I really need and what I could do without. TIA, Christina
  4. I would recommend that you take a look at the Build Your Library curriculum. It is a really inexpensive ($35) lesson plan that uses a literature-based approach. It also incorporates SOTW. I am using this with my second grader (and letting my 4yo tag along) and adding: MUS - alpha and beta Life of Fred Apples and Butterflies R.E.A.L. Science Odyssey Life 1 Writing with Ease First Language Lessons Explode the Code 3,4,5
  5. Math U See. It is very simple and straight forward and provides lots of practice. It is about as "mastery" as you can get.
  6. My son is 4.5 and is in the process of learning his letters and phonics. He is doing very well using games, MBTP 4-5, and a little of the Get Ready for the Code series. Pretty soon, I would like to start him on a formal program. So far, I have seen a lot of people mention AAR and AAS. Can anyone recommend IEW's reading and writing program? I would love to hear reviews on both! TIA Christina
  7. If you want something that is laid out for you, I suggest the Build Your Library curriculum. The author provides a literature-based curriculum that ties history, literature, and science together nicely. I also recommend taking a look at TWTM for a list of suggested science texts and biographies of famous scientists. If you follow the trivium, science and history naturally go together very nicely!
  8. I have a soon-to-be second grader, a 4.5yo and a 2yo. We are going to use The Nature Connection, Mudpies to Magnets, and The Young Scientist Club for extra experiments and RSO Life Science as our spine.
  9. I am considering Elemental Science - Bio for the Grammar Stage for my 6 and 4yo kids. I like how the curriculum is laid out in a classical style. I know absolutely no one who has used it, so I have no idea what to think about it except that I am intrigued. I also like that it has all four stages - bio, chem, earth/astronomy, and phys. I would love to know what those who have used it think - pros and cons. Also, has anyone tried the Living Books series with the Sassafrass twins? I was thinking that it would be fun to use those, coupled with the log books and activities, and base the whole year on that series. Any thoughts? Advice GREATLY appreciated :) Christina
  10. I am looking into Build Your Library for the same reason. I want to combine a 4.5yo and a 7yo, if possible. I also want a Classical curriculum that is literature based, and BYL fits that bill.
  11. Is anyone using Build Your Library as a curriculum? It looks really interesting but I wanted to get some feedback or reviews before looking further into it. Thanks! Christina
  12. There is also a page with a ton of really comprehensive reviews... http://www.linkytools.com/wordpress_list.aspx?id=195822&type=thumbnail
  13. Jackie, if you feel like sharing, I would love to know why you didn't like it for your preschooler. My intention was to get the 5-7 for my 4-year-old and the 6-8 for my 6-year-old. I was planning on just letting my 2-year-old go along for the ride :)
  14. I am sooooo glad you posted this! I am very seriously considering using the complete curriculum for all three of my kids and reading all of this positive stuff is pushing me closer to buying... Just curious, which math program are you using with it?
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