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just got my new Winter Promise catalog and I'm drooling over it.


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I'm going to add some of their Children Around the World to our SL Core 5 for my younger one. She really digs the artiness of it and the non-fiction books. I wasn't planning on buying one of their full programs again, but now I'm completely thrown!

 

My girls are 4 grades apart... I hadn't thought about using their Quest series for high school, but if I did that for my older one I could do the Sr. High level for her for 4 years (9-12) and the Jr High level for my younger for 4 years (5-8). I love the idea of doing one program for both, but there was no way I could do that if we stuck w/Sonlight. This could actually work!

 

Has anyone used Quest for the Ancients or Quest for the Middle Ages, etc. for either level? Did you use their LA, too? I've only ever used their elementary stuff - I only buy their exclusives typically because I know about their shipping issues... however it says in the new catalog that they've moved their warehouse to a more central location for faster shipping. Maybe that will alleviate some of their problems.

 

Tell me the good, the bad, and the ugly. :bigear:

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Three years later my children still say, "Remember when we did that WinterPromise program with the art and the read alouds and the notebooks? Can we do something like that again?"

 

I hate not having total content control but I think when we cycle back to Ancients next year, we're going with WP.

I hear you. We did Animals ATW and it was the best year. It was a turning point for my little one - everything we tried before that made her cry!

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You know, I WANT to love their programs, but after getting them, I'm always disappointed. Now, I've never done their whole program with LA, but I've always felt their schedules (AW and HIH) were a bit of a mess. I think their ideas always sound neat but the execution always lets me down. With that said, I did like their MYO history pages, so I might order those in the future, but the full programs, I'm going to skip. My ds did love AW, but I tweeked the schedule so much that I felt like i had rewritten the program. Maybe it is just me?

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We are using their "Royals to Revolution" right now with my high schooler and she loves it. I only order the guides from them, not the actual books (unless they're unavailable anywhere else), and that seems to work better. I get all the books from Amazon, which I really like, because I usually stagger the order with what I need for the first ten weeks of the program, then the next ten weeks and so on. It's a little easier on the pocketbook that way.

 

I also combine Winterpromise with KONOS and we have done some AMAZING unit studies that way!

 

Diane W.

married for 22 years

homeschooling 3 kiddos for 16 years

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We did AW this year and really liked it. This year, they have tweaked the schedule more and changed some books...and it looks really awesome. I wish I could do it again LOL! I did not use their LA. I started to, but DS just isn't a creative writer yet, and with a toddler around I just found it easier to use FLL, and we have now started WWE. I really like the look of their 3rd grade LA, but I still think I will stick with FLL, the style works well for us. Some of the read alouds were hit or miss, but I felt that way about SL K too. The kids loved learning about animals though. I appreciated the scheduling being there for me and lots of activities to pick and choose from.

 

As far as ordering, so far on the WP forum the deliveries seem to be picking up from previous years. I don't think it's going to be 5 days like SL, but it shouldn't take months either! FWIW, the customer service I have received from them has been great...I have no room to complain there at ALL.

 

We are getting AS1 for next year, and I can't wait to use it. What I love is the ability to school the kids on the same subject together. My oldest two are 1st and 3rd next year and can continue learning together. Even better, when the 2 year old is school aged...they have complementary programs to make it work. I LOVE that. It's less work for me to figure out and plan, I can teach them together, and they can all learn about the same things together and help each other out.

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My catalog hasn't arrived yet but I'm going to put it away until I've ordered everything for next year and it's too late to change my mind! LOL

 

I've used WP for three years but I've sworn off getting a complete program from them because of customer service problems. Last year was a nightmare.

 

Still, I've loved using their programs (never used their LA, just the history). The years we did AS1 and AS2 were some of my favorite home schooling years.

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I haven't used the programs your talking about yet but plan on it after this year. We've used AS1 and 2, CAW, and SSBB. I love all of their programs and have been fortunate enough not to have any issues with their shipping. And anytime I've spoken to Don he has been amazing at solving any problems (like one book I was missing but didn't notice until late in the year). We'll be doing S&S with RAE and can't wait.

 

katiejane, good to know you didn't have a problems shipping to Australia. I was a bit worried about getting our stuff sent here to Spain as I've never had to do that in the past. But besides the shipping costs, hopefully there won't be any other issues.

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We love WP (as in my siggy). I've never had shipping problems, and the WP staff is amazing. I have done Sea & Sky, and American Story 1, and 5 levels of their LA. Excellent stuff! My oldest claims no homeschool curriculum could ever top Sea & Sky!

 

I have an older AW program, and I so want the new one. It looks wonderful.

 

I haven't gotten the catalog yet, but I can't wait. Hopefully tomorrow.

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Yes, Don is a very sweet man. And while I'm happy to read about people who have never had shipping problems, do a search on these boards (and the home school review boards) and, sadly, it is apparent that shipping issues are common.

 

I loved their programs but think that people who order a full package need to do so with their eyes open that delays (even delays that last months) frequently occur. If one knows that up front, they are less likely to be frustrated when it occurs.

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You know, I WANT to love their programs, but after getting them, I'm always disappointed. Now, I've never done their whole program with LA, but I've always felt their schedules (AW and HIH) were a bit of a mess. I think their ideas always sound neat but the execution always lets me down. With that said, I did like their MYO history pages, so I might order those in the future, but the full programs, I'm going to skip. My ds did love AW, but I tweeked the schedule so much that I felt like i had rewritten the program. Maybe it is just me?

 

I could not agree more.

 

The only exception I have found is that Ive been reasonably happy with their science for 4-6th gr- the human body and forensics. We are not a YE family and we do believe in evolution but still found the science worked for us.

 

I have AW and want to love it but do not. We did 1/2 this yr and will try to do 1/2 next yr I guess. A lot of the suggestions do not work.

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We are using their "Royals to Revolution" right now with my high schooler and she loves it. I only order the guides from them, not the actual books (unless they're unavailable anywhere else), and that seems to work better. I get all the books from Amazon, which I really like, because I usually stagger the order with what I need for the first ten weeks of the program, then the next ten weeks and so on. It's a little easier on the pocketbook that way.

 

I also combine Winterpromise with KONOS and we have done some AMAZING unit studies that way!

 

Diane W.

married for 22 years

homeschooling 3 kiddos for 16 years

 

I saw another post you wrote that said you combined CM, Waldorf, and WTM, I think. This is what I am interested in trying to do, as crazy as it sounds. I believe that academics should be balanced with artistic expression and that students should derive some enjoyment from their studies. I believe this, in turn, will enhance their ability to perform academically. (just a little intro before my twenty questions) :tongue_smilie:

So tell us more about the high school program. I find it interesting that you have been homeschooling for sixteen years and you like WP. What other programs have been a hit with you? Have you used Konos for many years? Do you feel that WP is lacking in some way, is that why you supplement?

Are you making transcripts? Is your dd college bound? What do you use for writing? Science? Math? :D

If these questions overwhelm you, or invade your privacy in any way, please disregard them.

Thanks so much.

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I'm always happy to talk about homeschooling and my curriculum! I'm a curriculum junkie and this feeds my habit. LOL Sorry in advance for the length of this post.

 

Lets see: I have 3 children....DS 19 (graduated and serving a church mission), DD 17 (finishing up her "junior year") and our happy surprise, DS 9 (finishing up 3rd grade).

 

My curriculum choices have evolved from years of researching, investing, buying and using the stuff. When we first began, the choices were pretty limited to Abeka, Bob Jones, KONOS and Calvert. We went with Calvert from K-4th with my oldest. They are actually quite classical in their approach and their teacher manuals really taught me how to teach.

 

Then one day, we were working on a "read the chapter, answer the questions at the end" assignment with my son and he sighed and said, "Mom, I really hate this. And, I'm not learning anything. I forget it all as soon as I finish the chapter." Yikes! My first thought was, "Oh no, I have to do KONOS!" :lol:

 

So, I started with a KONOS unit study over the summer just to see if I could do it. My kids LOVED it. They didn't even know they were doing school. So, I bit the bullet, bought KONOS, went and got a TON of books on Charlotte Mason theory, Waldorf, hands-on learning and the Well Trained Mind (which had just been published) and dug in. I sat outside everyday with my highlighter and a large glass of something cold and caffeinated and read, read, read. When I'd finished, I looked over the highlighted section of everything that really resonated with me and formed my "educational philosophy". LOL It's basically that I think a child's education needs to be rigorous and thorough, but that does NOT mean it has to be dry and boring. I think most young children learn best by hands-on methods and so unit studies became my way of teaching what would be called "classical material".

 

With my elementary kids, we read engaging "real" books, we dig into our topics through experiential learning...we cook, we play, we sing, we get messy, we glue, we paint, we laugh and we make learning fun. I am much more concerned with the process than the product at this stage. I want my children to love to learn. I want it to be an exciting adventure. Please note: this does not translate into huge projects, crafts or field trips every day. Some days it's worksheets only. But we do read something engaging every day.

 

So....in real life...if we are doing a unit study on birds (we did this in first grade), we set up bird feeders in our yard, we study a whole chicken (before I throw it in the crockpot), we examine feathers with a magnifying glass and discuss their qualities (Why are they hollow? Why are there downy feathers and flight feathers? Why does water bead on them?), we study bird eating and migratory habits, we go to the nature center near our home for a field trip, we read about John Audubon, go on a picnic with our nature notebooks and try to sketch birds in the wild as he did. We get immersed in our subject and I allow my kids to investigate and explore...even if it's a bit messy.

 

For my older kids, I expect product, not just process. So, with Winter Promise (or KONOS high school curriculum...I've used and loved both), it is still a loosely based unit study, but the topics are deeper and the questions require more mature thought and, obviously, more rigorous work.

 

One of the questions in the KONOS "Ancient Worlds" curriculum for high school led to a very lively dinner table discussion. We had been learning about ancient Egypt and the mummies and how they were on display in the Cairo museum. The question posed was, "How would you feel if a future civilization dug up George Washington or Abraham Lincoln and removed him from his tomb and put his body on display in a museum? Would it be ok? Would it only be ok if several thousand years have passed? Would it never be ok?"

 

In high school, I want to develop my child's reasoning and communication skills through topics such as logic, debate and good, strong writing.

 

I didn't make transcripts, because our state and private universities here in Utah are very friendly to home schoolers. They suggested taking a couple of on-line college courses while my kids were in high school (most of them offer independent study options here) and they would evaluate them based on how well they performed in those courses.

 

My daughter does want to attend college and she will take the ACT (what our universities here prefer) and a few online courses starting in the fall.

 

For science this year, we have used "Friendly Chemistry" (Rainbow carries it). My dd didn't really like Apologia and her grandpa has a PhD in Organic Chem, so he helps her with that. She will probably take an online science course for her senior year.

 

For Math we use VideoText. It has worked extremely well for her. She likes the way the concepts are presented and she just goes at her own speed. I love that every. single. problem. is completely worked out in the solutions manual. Every step, not just the answer. That alone sold me on it. Well, that and Cathy Duffy's recommendation. :D

 

As far as Winter Promise, my dd was very interested in their "Royals to Revolution" course. She wanted to study European History and that seemed to fit the bill. I had tried Animal Worlds with my youngest and we liked it, but it didn't wow me. I really do like the high school program though. I love their reading material and we are both learning quite a bit. WP's choices for literature are great, too. My dd is slightly dyslexic and she still prefers me to read aloud, because the words start swimming on the page if she has to do a lot of independent reading. I have yet to find a curriculum that has been perfectly written to my standards :lol:, so I've just accepted that I will need to tweak whatever I choose. And, since I have more curriculum than a booth at a homeschool convention.....I can do that. (Hello, my name is Diane and I am addicted to curriculum)

 

For next year, my dd wants to concentrate on American history....her favorite and mine. So, I'm planning on getting American Story 1 from WP and using it in conjunction with KONOS (which I already own) so that my little one can tag along. For my dd, I will probably write out my own lesson plans using KONOS American History and books from Veritas Press.

 

I always look at curriculum like a buffet....pick and choose what I like from it and discard the rest without a shred of guilt.

 

Hope I answered what you were asking. Please feel free to ask more if there's something I can clarify.

 

Diane W.

married 22 years

homeschooling 3 kiddos for 16 years

Edited by DianeW88
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I'm always happy to talk about homeschooling and my curriculum! I'm a curriculum junkie and this feeds my habit. LOL Sorry in advance for the length of this post.

 

Lets see: I have 3 children....DS 19 (graduated and serving a church mission), DD 17 (finishing up her "junior year") and our happy surprise, DS 9 (finishing up 3rd grade).

 

My curriculum choices have evolved from years of researching, investing, buying and using the stuff. When we first began, the choices were pretty limited to Abeka, Bob Jones, KONOS and Calvert. We went with Calvert from K-4th with my oldest. They are actually quite classical in their approach and their teacher manuals really taught me how to teach.

 

Then one day, we were working on a "read the chapter, answer the questions at the end" assignment with my son and he sighed and said, "Mom, I really hate this. And, I'm not learning anything. I forget it all as soon as I finish the chapter." Yikes! My first thought was, "Oh no, I have to do KONOS!" :lol:

 

So, I started with a KONOS unit study over the summer just to see if I could do it. My kids LOVED it. They didn't even know they were doing school. So, I bit the bullet, bought KONOS, went and got a TON of books on Charlotte Mason theory, Waldorf, hands-on learning and the Well Trained Mind (which had just been published) and dug in. I sat outside everyday with my highlighter and a large glass of something cold and caffeinated and read, read, read. When I'd finished, I looked over the highlighted section of everything that really resonated with me and formed my "educational philosophy". LOL It's basically that I think a child's education needs to be rigorous and thorough, but that does NOT mean it has to be dry and boring. I think most young children learn best by hands-on methods and so unit studies became my way of teaching what would be called "classical material".

 

With my elementary kids, we read engaging "real" books, we dig into our topics through experiential learning...we cook, we play, we sing, we get messy, we glue, we paint, we laugh and we make learning fun. I am much more concerned with the process than the product at this stage. I want my children to love to learn. I want it to be an exciting adventure. Please note: this does not translate into huge projects, crafts or field trips every day. Some days it's worksheets only. But we do read something engaging every day.

 

So....in real life...if we are doing a unit study on birds (we did this in first grade), we set up bird feeders in our yard, we study a whole chicken (before I throw it in the crockpot), we examine feathers with a magnifying glass and discuss their qualities (Why are they hollow? Why are there downy feathers and flight feathers? Why does water bead on them?), we study bird eating and migratory habits, we go to the nature center near our home for a field trip, we read about John Audubon, go on a picnic with our nature notebooks and try to sketch birds in the wild as he did. We get immersed in our subject and I allow my kids to investigate and explore...even if it's a bit messy.

 

For my older kids, I expect product, not just process. So, with Winter Promise (or KONOS high school curriculum...I've used and loved both), it is still a loosely based unit study, but the topics are deeper and the questions require more mature thought and, obviously, more rigorous work.

 

One of the questions in the KONOS "Ancient Worlds" curriculum for high school led to a very lively dinner table discussion. We had been learning about ancient Egypt and the mummies and how they were on display in the Cairo museum. The question posed was, "How would you feel if a future civilization dug up George Washington or Abraham Lincoln and removed him from his tomb and put his body on display in a museum? Would it be ok? Would it only be ok if several thousand years have passed? Would it never be ok?"

 

In high school, I want to develop my child's reasoning and communication skills through topics such as logic, debate and good, strong writing.

 

I didn't make transcripts, because our state and private universities here in Utah are very friendly to home schoolers. They suggested taking a couple of on-line college courses while my kids were in high school (most of them offer independent study options here) and they would evaluate them based on how well they performed in those courses.

 

My daughter does want to attend college and she will take the ACT (what our universities here prefer) and a few online courses starting in the fall.

 

For science this year, we have used "Friendly Chemistry" (Rainbow carries it). My dd didn't really like Apologia and her grandpa has a PhD in Organic Chem, so he helps her with that. She will probably take an online science course for her senior year.

 

For Math we use VideoText. It has worked extremely well for her. She likes the way the concepts are presented and she just goes at her own speed. I love that every. single. problem. is completely worked out in the solutions manual. Every step, not just the answer. That alone sold me on it. Well, that and Cathy Duffy's recommendation. :D

 

As far as Winter Promise, my dd was very interested in their "Royals to Revolution" course. She wanted to study European History and that seemed to fit the bill. I had tried Animal Worlds with my youngest and we liked it, but it didn't wow me. I really do like the high school program though. I love their reading material and we are both learning quite a bit. WP's choices for literature are great, too. My dd is slightly dyslexic and she still prefers me to read aloud, because the words start swimming on the page if she has to do a lot of independent reading. I have yet to find a curriculum that has been perfectly written to my standards :lol:, so I've just accepted that I will need to tweak whatever I choose. And, since I have more curriculum than a booth at a homeschool convention.....I can do that. (Hello, my name is Diane and I am addicted to curriculum)

 

For next year, my dd wants to concentrate on American history....her favorite and mine. So, I'm planning on getting American Story 1 from WP and using it in conjunction with KONOS (which I already own) so that my little one can tag along. For my dd, I will probably write out my own lesson plans using KONOS American History and books from Veritas Press.

 

I always look at curriculum like a buffet....pick and choose what I like from it and discard the rest without a shred of guilt.

 

Hope I answered what you were asking. Please feel free to ask more if there's something I can clarify.

 

Diane W.

married 22 years

homeschooling 3 kiddos for 16 years

 

Yes, Diane, thanks a bunch for all of that. I am a lot like you in the sense that I look at curricula the same way. I love it, and I use a lot of it, but I try to take bits and pieces that will work for us and leave the rest. Oh, and I love your educational philosophy.:D

I’m am definitely taking another look at Winter Promise. And why did you have to mention that VT math shows the whole problem being worked out, I just bought three levels of CD math. :lol:

I am so glad you are here to share your many years of experience with us. I'm looking forward to more of your posts! I just love all of you long time homeschoolers.

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Diane, are there assignments with WP or just a reading schedule?

 

Three years later my children still say, "Remember when we did that WinterPromise program with the art and the read alouds and the notebooks? Can we do something like that again?"

 

I hate not having total content control but I think when we cycle back to Ancients next year, we're going with WP.

Oh please let us know how that turns out!

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My kiddos are little so we haven't experienced the upper level programs. We have used Ready to Learn. My ds was 3 when we started and now at 6 he literally tears up with joy when he looks back at the work he did that year. Of course, no program is perfect but it was wonderful for us. I am a pretty flexible person so it did not freak me out if things did not line up exactly. It did not outrage me to do a Lion project for "L" week even though we were on the garden unit. (LOL)

 

We have completed most of Animals and their World. Again things don't always line up perfectly and I don't really expect it to. We have really enjoyed the projects and the read-alouds. It excites the kids when I bring it out. I decided mid-year just to focus on the basics and we cut out most of AW. This move was miserable for the kids so we are going to try to finish up the remaining units.

 

We have started the World Around Me and it is very sweet and covers some great topics . DS danced around the house for a week with his books excited about starting a new WP program. I have not used any of the LA programs, yet, and don't really expect to in the future. They look great, but I think we will go more of the WTM route. We have also used some of the SL cores.

 

So in a nutshell, WP is not always perfect for me, but it really delights my children and provides what I feel is a dynamic and challenging learning experience. But, like I said earlier I am flexible and don't stress the small stuff if my kids are learning and having a good time. I have had excellent customer service with WP--the kind of customer service that makes you want to continue to use a program even when there may be something newer and greater on the horizon.

 

No matter what we do in the future--I think we will always have something going on from WP or the kids would probably revolt.

 

HTH.

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WP does have assignments, but there aren't any "workbooks" per se with the themed programs. They do have "Make Your Own" worksheets based on the individual themes. The course I am teaching now, "Royals to Revolution" has an "Exhibit the World's Fair" component, which is project based work geared for high schoolers to do independently. There is also a classical composers and art appreciation part of the course that we've really enjoyed.

 

The lessons are presented in more of an outline form, like Sonlight. I tweak it here and there and add what I like and remove what I don't. WP has samples of their lesson plans on their website, so you can get an idea of how it's organized. They also give video/DVD suggestions and websites which really add to the lessons, IMO.

 

In addition to their theme unit, I'm also using their "British Literature" LA course for my dd. She's liking that as well. It's more a "sampling" of British Lit., but I am changing it and doing the complete work if it is something I feel is really important to read in its entirety.

 

Also wanted to say that I also have used TOG in the past and will probably use the last 2 units from their Year 3 and the first two units from their Year 4 for the base of my dd's senior year starting in the fall.

 

Diane W.

married for 22 years

homeschooling 3 kiddos for 16 years

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In addition to their theme unit, I'm also using their "British Literature" LA course for my dd. She's liking that as well. It's more a "sampling" of British Lit., but I am changing it and doing the complete work if it is something I feel is really important to read in its entirety.
TY! I was very intrigued by this program as well. Have you used the other LA? I am wondering if it adds to the programs with writing assignments related to the learning. I am also curious how you liked the readers.
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I haven't done their other LA programs. I was using the WTM guidelines for the most part for LA previous to this year.

 

However, the readers that WP uses for the younger LA programs I have used independently with my youngest (because I disliked the Veritas Press ones that came with their program so much). I loved the readers. They were fun, engaging, and my son adored them. Barnes & Noble carries them, so you can always go and check them out before you buy if you prefer.

 

Diane W.

married for 22 years

homeschooling 3 kiddos for 16 years

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Guest Alte Veste Academy
I am a pretty flexible person so it did not freak me out if things did not line up exactly. It did not outrage me to do a Lion project for "L" week even though we were on the garden unit. (LOL)

 

:lol: I love the way you put this! Outrage! Exactly! :lol: Because I remember thinking that when you pay so much money for a program (or even just for the guide), that the money should have bought the level of work that was such a pain in the rear that I was paying to avoid it...setting out all those books, having your spine and activity books and readers all out and open and penciling in page numbers for each day such that L week would have you doing a lion project for the safari unit OR, since you were in the garden unit, doing a ladybug for L. I mean, I just do not think that is too much to ask. So, yeah, um...outrage. :tongue_smilie:

 

We have completed most of Animals and their World. Again things don't always line up perfectly and I don't really expect it to.

 

I am flexible and don't stress the small stuff if my kids are learning and having a good time.

 

You probably have no idea how much I wish I could be more like you! :D Easy-going is something I'm working on...

 

I kind of think this is it in a nutshell. If you can get over things not being aligned and flowing perfectly, you'll probably be happy with WP. I simply can't get over it (but oh, how I wish I could). I own AS1 and AW and had the same problem with both programs.

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Kristina, I know what you mean. I had already planned part of my own program for Native Americans for DD. I wanted the projects to line up with the non-fiction and fiction reading... then I got the WP AS1 guide. People were very enthusiastic about the NA study so I thought good! I can finish it out with this, right? Um... no. They scheduled their books in page order. More than Mocassins was scheduled in page order to be read in its entirety and the projects came from that. The other non-fiction NA books were scheduled right in a row with no regard to lining up. I agree that for the price they charge for their guides I was like :confused:. I worry that the other guides are like this. The resources that they use look fantastic and have me coming back to making plans to use them over and over again. But... is it just as easy to buy the resources and schedule them yourself? If it doesn't line up then why bother buying a guide? Are the others this way?

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Guest Alte Veste Academy
Kristina, I know what you mean. I had already planned part of my own program for Native Americans for DD. I wanted the projects to line up with the non-fiction and fiction reading... then I got the WP AS1 guide. People were very enthusiastic about the NA study so I thought good! I can finish it out with this, right? Um... no. They scheduled their books in page order. More than Mocassins was scheduled in page order to be read in its entirety and the projects came from that. The other non-fiction NA books were scheduled right in a row with no regard to lining up. I agree that for the price they charge for their guides I was like :confused:.

 

Yes, and I remember thinking how great that they even do a Native American focus because that's exactly what I wanted. What I didn't understand is that it was kind of a separate thread running through the year, not necessarily chronological. I basically chucked the plans entirely, as I wanted to start with a study of Native Americans before the arrival of Europeans. So, that's what we did. We started with 8 weeks of Native American studies of the different regions and specific tribes, customs and activities. Then we moved on to explorers and so on...

 

I worry that the other guides are like this. The resources that they use look fantastic and have me coming back to making plans to use them over and over again. But... is it just as easy to buy the resources and schedule them yourself? If it doesn't line up then why bother buying a guide? Are the others this way?

 

I assume they are all this way. After seeing two that are, I won't be burned again. Honestly, I think the programs are lovely for someone who is more flexible (as mentioned above). However, people need to know going in that this is the situation so they can judge before they plunk down the cash whether or not they can live with it. I'm just going it alone again. I will say that I've bought quite a few of the books that I think were well chosen modern gems, but for biographies I have been much happier with my old Signature and Landmark books than some of the more modern ones they use.

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You know, I WANT to love their programs, but after getting them, I'm always disappointed. Now, I've never done their whole program with LA, but I've always felt their schedules (AW and HIH) were a bit of a mess. I think their ideas always sound neat but the execution always lets me down. With that said, I did like their MYO history pages, so I might order those in the future, but the full programs, I'm going to skip. My ds did love AW, but I tweeked the schedule so much that I felt like i had rewritten the program. Maybe it is just me?

 

 

Nope - not just you! I struggle with this too. I LOVE the idea of it but struggle with the execution of it. The schedule seems disjointed and doesn't flow like I want it to. We did AS1 and AS2 and I had to completely rework the schedule especially the Native American and African American studies. It's almost liket hey took a bunch of unit studies and pushed them altogether and there's no segways or bridges just unrelated things put into one package. It was VERY frustrating. Unfortunately, the LA was a TOTAL letdown We did the Advanced K LA and I sold it after a few weeks. It was all disjointed workbook assignments with some phonics studies - I could have done that on my own. I looked at thier LA for 5th grade but again, all workbook assignments and knowing WP it is probably all disjointed. We did HIH the second year it was out and that was a disaster too. VERY disjointed and it was literally a SPRINT through history by week 3 we were already covering Rome after having run through Mesopotamia, Egypt and Greece. I keep telling myself I will learn - I will learn, I will not purchase this again because it's always the same thing and then I do it again and kick myself and rework the schedule. Love their books etc, hate their schedules.

Edited by jclinton
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My kiddos are little so we haven't experienced the upper level programs. We have used Ready to Learn. My ds was 3 when we started and now at 6 he literally tears up with joy when he looks back at the work he did that year. Of course, no program is perfect but it was wonderful for us. I am a pretty flexible person so it did not freak me out if things did not line up exactly. It did not outrage me to do a Lion project for "L" week even though we were on the garden unit. (LOL)

 

We have completed most of Animals and their World. Again things don't always line up perfectly and I don't really expect it to. We have really enjoyed the projects and the read-alouds. It excites the kids when I bring it out. I decided mid-year just to focus on the basics and we cut out most of AW. This move was miserable for the kids so we are going to try to finish up the remaining units.

 

We have started the World Around Me and it is very sweet and covers some great topics . DS danced around the house for a week with his books excited about starting a new WP program. I have not used any of the LA programs, yet, and don't really expect to in the future. They look great, but I think we will go more of the WTM route. We have also used some of the SL cores.

 

So in a nutshell, WP is not always perfect for me, but it really delights my children and provides what I feel is a dynamic and challenging learning experience. But, like I said earlier I am flexible and don't stress the small stuff if my kids are learning and having a good time. I have had excellent customer service with WP--the kind of customer service that makes you want to continue to use a program even when there may be something newer and greater on the horizon.

 

No matter what we do in the future--I think we will always have something going on from WP or the kids would probably revolt.

 

HTH.

Thanks, Laurel. I feel the same way - it may not be perfect, but it definitely brings joy to my kids. Besides the hands-on, their 2 favorite read-alouds of all time came from our year w/WP (Tarantula in My Purse and Ereth's Birthday). There's just an "X" factor that WP has that we haven't quite found with Sonlight, Veritas or Oak Meadow that I can't explain. It just makes them happy. And they learn stuff. :)

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Yes, and I remember thinking how great that they even do a Native American focus because that's exactly what I wanted. What I didn't understand is that it was kind of a separate thread running through the year, not necessarily chronological. I basically chucked the plans entirely, as I wanted to start with a study of Native Americans before the arrival of Europeans. So, that's what we did. We started with 8 weeks of Native American studies of the different regions and specific tribes, customs and activities. Then we moved on to explorers and so on...

 

 

This could be viewed as a strength of the program.

 

One problem I've come across is the "disappearing Indian" phenomenon. Basically, apart from a separate unit of Native Americans (usually Thanksgiving-related!) we don't hear much more about them, except in the context of being enemy combatants and sent to reservations.

 

Even MY kids, whose grandmother (my MIL) is Choctaw were surprised to find out that a tribe near us still practices many traditional customs. :tongue_smilie:

 

I wonder if having a separate thread running through the curriculum helps to combat this misunderstanding?

 

(Going to go take a closer look at Winterpromise now :001_smile: )

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Guest Alte Veste Academy
This could be viewed as a strength of the program.

 

One problem I've come across is the "disappearing Indian" phenomenon. Basically, apart from a separate unit of Native Americans (usually Thanksgiving-related!) we don't hear much more about them, except in the context of being enemy combatants and sent to reservations.

 

Even MY kids, whose grandmother (my MIL) is Choctaw were surprised to find out that a tribe near us still practices many traditional customs. :tongue_smilie:

 

I wonder if having a separate thread running through the curriculum helps to combat this misunderstanding?

 

(Going to go take a closer look at Winterpromise now :001_smile: )

 

I'm sorry. I was very unclear. I do understand what you're saying and yes, I agree that it is a problem. However, I also see a problem with programs or books barely mentioning the Native American presence here before launching right into explorers. There is no disappearing Indian phenomenon in our homeschool. Again, the Native American focus was part of what attracted me to the program. Basically, I wanted to have my cake and eat it too. I wanted to spend what I thought was a reasonable and respectful amount of time covering the Native American population before the arrival of the explorers and cover Native American history throughout American history, up to present day. I'm continuing as we move on to our second year. One of my favorite things about America is its multicultural makeup and I'm going out of my way to find materials that tell that story, not just for Native Americans but for the full spectrum of diverse cultures represented in our country.

 

Frankly, I think the separate thread is more like an add-on afterthought than a respectful treatment. Telling the integrated story of our history--the good, the bad and the ugly--seems to me to be the most respectful treatment of all our people.

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I am trying to put together a one year "conglomeration" of world history overview using Hideaways, Sea and Sky and selected materials from Preparing's Heart of Dakota, and I believe the work I will put into it will be worth WAY more than $70, which is what is charged for the guide if you don't get the "free" one along with a package.

 

I am EXTREMELY thankful for the schedules we have used so far in AW, AS1 & 2 and IRTL. I'm working on motivating my dh to come up with a computer program which would help me schedule all this out... BUT....even if he makes one, it would never provide the level of coordination expected by some previous posters. I would really HATE flipping back and forth from book to book in all different orders trying to make everything "line up exactly." I guess we just have different personalities. I much prefer broad theme correspondences. I found it very interesting to study the Iroquois while we were in the era of New England colonization, the Hopi when we got to the study of Texas and California, and the Sioux when we were studying the settlement of the Great Plains. Yes, those studies also encompassed other historical eras, but to study ALL of the "If You Lived With" Native American books would be too costly for a boxed curriculum program. Maybe that is the issue here... people who don't fit well in boxes were trying to confine themselves to the WP "box".

 

I think I will eventually go the Truthquest history route- but this year is a segue of sorts to that end. Even then, I am likely always to purchase WP theme sets to give my TQ study focus and provide readily available resources. I LOVE WP's resource selections.

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I am trying to put together a one year "conglomeration" of world history overview using Hideaways

 

 

Oh yeah! I used HIH, some of the notebooking and craft suggestions, and still go to that IG for ideas once in a while. I also used the QMA notebooking pages when we did SOTW 2. That was great. They've a very good notebooking resource.

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I believe the work I will put into it will be worth WAY more than $70, which is what is charged for the guide if you don't get the "free" one along with a package.

 

I wish that they were set up like HOD... not having to buy every last scheduled resource and book in order to get a discount on the guide. I have no interest in their Bible study resources, and their are several activity resources that I doubt we will use. I do plan to buy the box when we do Sea and Sky and Royals and Revolution. I am not sure about the other things we plan to do. I might pick and choose from those.
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You mean like HOD's basic package? Buy $128 worth of stuff and pay $114? That's not much of a discount IMHO. You can get that by buying WP Gift Certificates in the holiday season (Buy $25, get $5 free) or by attending the retreat. I am very confused by HOD's packages. I finally figured out how to order what I wanted from Preparing, but it was a very difficult process.

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I just wanted to say thank you for this thread and the others. My fears are laid to rest. I see people saying that the guides flow well as you go up in the levels. I currently plan to use all of the WP world history programs after HOD Bigger and Preparing: S&S, CATW, QAW, QMA (Though we may switch out the spine), QRR, QModern.

Edited by Lovedtodeath
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We really enjoyed the year we did American Story, or whatever it was called. I think that was about 2006. The thing is, I don't remember there being anything religious in the program. Maybe it had Bible schedule and I marked it out like I did the Bible readings in Sonlight. But then we tried the Sea & Sky one and the books were way too Christian. It was nearly impossible to tweak to fit our secular nature so I dumped it.

 

The themed levels are so cool and I would have chosen the medieval one for dd12 this year except that it's built around Mystery of History. That is an unacceptable spine for us. It's not a history of Christianity which I would have no problem using because the history of our world most definitely has religion. Instead, it's a Christian book that talks about how awesome Jesus is, and the Bible's promises are coming true and life is great for those who believe in Him. That approach obviously doesn't appeal to me. So bummer, yet another program laid out in a way that would be so awesome, but it's out of the realm of our beliefs. And some people suggested History Odyssey but it isn't anything like Winter Promise. It was very boring and we barely dragged ourselves through a month of it.

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We really enjoyed the year we did American Story, or whatever it was called. I think that was about 2006. The thing is, I don't remember there being anything religious in the program. Maybe it had Bible schedule and I marked it out like I did the Bible readings in Sonlight. But then we tried the Sea & Sky one and the books were way too Christian. It was nearly impossible to tweak to fit our secular nature so I dumped it.

 

The themed levels are so cool and I would have chosen the medieval one for dd12 this year except that it's built around Mystery of History. That is an unacceptable spine for us. It's not a history of Christianity which I would have no problem using because the history of our world most definitely has religion. Instead, it's a Christian book that talks about how awesome Jesus is, and the Bible's promises are coming true and life is great for those who believe in Him. That approach obviously doesn't appeal to me. So bummer, yet another program laid out in a way that would be so awesome, but it's out of the realm of our beliefs. And some people suggested History Odyssey but it isn't anything like Winter Promise. It was very boring and we barely dragged ourselves through a month of it.

 

For the very reasons you mention that you don't like the WP Quest programs are the very reasons I am looking forward to it. I'm just glad that there are so many options out there for homeschooling so that I can choose what fits our family's beliefs and you can choose things that fit your family's needs better.

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I'm just glad that there are so many options out there for homeschooling so that I can choose what fits our family's beliefs and you can choose things that fit your family's needs better.

 

I wish I could say the same thing. But the programs I think are great are religious in nature and I can't use them. I don't have any other resources except textbooks used in schools or I could try to pull my own program together completely, which is very difficult for me. So yes, it's great to have lots of choices but sucks when there aren't lots of choices. Finding a good secular science program is even more difficult. I gave up science a few years back. If it wasn't for a homeschool class, we still wouldn't be doing science. And my ds13 will be doing science through his high school program, thank goodness. There just aren't enough good programs to choose from.

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The themed levels are so cool and I would have chosen the medieval one for dd12 this year except that it's built around Mystery of History.

Is it not possible to use it with a different spine? I was hoping that the schedule that lines up SOTW and MOH would work, or skipping the spine altogether...

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The problem I face with WP is the MOH spine as well. I could try to substitute but then I might as well make my own program. We are Christians, but not main stream, so it’s difficult to use religious homeschool materials.

We love OM right now; hopefully we will really enjoy it next year, too. But I am unsure if we will continue with OM into high school. Many times I long to do AO for HS but each time I look at the higher levels, I just don’t see us using all of that.

Sonlight seems easier to tweak but the only level I absolutely love for high school is the British literature level. Oh and how I wish (I think) I could use TOG, but again, it’s not for us.

And HO does seem boring, usually people do not stick with it for very long; I guess that tells me something. Every time we plan to use it, the plans never materialize. I have actually bought some of the books before, in preparation, with full intention of using the program.

I suppose I will make my own plans for high school. (with the help of TWTM) But I don’t want to! I want to tweak something to death; it’s more fun that way. It doesn’t seem like work at all. LOL. What can I say; I love buying a neatly put together program so that I can tear it apart and build it back up again. :lol:

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I wish I could say the same thing. But the programs I think are great are religious in nature and I can't use them. I don't have any other resources except textbooks used in schools or I could try to pull my own program together completely, which is very difficult for me. So yes, it's great to have lots of choices but sucks when there aren't lots of choices. Finding a good secular science program is even more difficult. I gave up science a few years back. If it wasn't for a homeschool class, we still wouldn't be doing science. And my ds13 will be doing science through his high school program, thank goodness. There just aren't enough good programs to choose from.

 

I have many of the same problems. We are Catholic and most of the Christian curriculum programs and books are difficult to use. The Mystery of History book is a big roadblock for me and those upper level WP programs as well. I keep threatening to write one but the time eludes me right now. I am putting together my own program next year so we'll see what gets written down.

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Is it not possible to use it with a different spine? I was hoping that the schedule that lines up SOTW and MOH would work, or skipping the spine altogether...
It seems like it would be simple. I plan to use it for 8th grade... I will make DD figure out where to read in a spine to go with it. Call it research. LOL
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