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Narrowed it down to HOD and TOG. Looking for your experience with either or both


mumkins
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Ok, so, I think I've narrowed it down HOD or TOG.

 

My pros for HOD:

 

I love their books selections

I love how other religions are introduced, but not focused on

I the activities in the books

I love how lessons are short and sweet

 

My cons for HOD:

 

The kids aren't all learning about the same subject

I'm going to have to teach at least 4, if not more, guides down the road

I end up making the maps. The kids colour and label them, but actually drawing an actual map of say, Jamestown, Pennsylvania and sourounding area or the Western coast of Europe is too detailed and difficult.

 

My pros for TOG:

 

I like the books 2nd best of all the curric. I've looked at, though they do focus on other religions and US history a bit more than I'd like.

The kids can all be learning about the same thing.

I love the map CD

I love that there's tests and the student activity pages

 

 

My cons for TOG:

 

Heavier work load for me

Don't have HOD's books

Doesn't appear to be as Christ centered as HOD

 

So, now I have to decided which pros and cons out weigh which. Is it really feasible to teach 4+ HOD TM's? How badly do I want my kids all learning about the same thing?:confused:

 

I'd love to hear others experiences with both programs, especially if you've done both and chose one over the other. And if you chose neither and moved on, why and what did you choose?

Edited by mumkins
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Guest RecumbentHeart

Just another thought you may have considered already - the HOD guides do have extensions with which could enable you to combine two children spaced a little further apart into the same guide while just doing their core subjects separately. Also, from what I understand the further you get into HOD, the more independent work involved. I thought there was something else but now I've forgotten.

 

How old are your children? (I don't know much about these curricula, just curious :D )

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though they do focus on other religions .... a bit more than I'd like.

 

 

 

I've been using TOG for four years, and I really disagree with this conlcusion. Do they mention other religions? Yes, but it's for the purpose of exploring how other religions are viewed in light of the Bible. I certainly wouldn't call other religions a focus of TOG, especially not in the lower grades.

 

That being said. I like TOG for the lower grades, but IMHO TOG's strengths are the Dialectic and Rhetoric levels. Those two levels are rich with Biblical discussion and Christian Worldview. The Grammar levels are also Christ centered, but some of the book selections would not be my first choice. I have an extensive library from my early homeschooling years, so I just substitute. That's the beauty of TOG; it's not resource dependent, but focuses on topics. The answers to the student questions can be derived from many different resources.

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I guess in looking at Year 1, I just see so many books that are about other religions that it seemed like it was being focused on. I guess it's hard to judge when I don't have the TM.

 

I've thought about doing HOD with extensions for #3 and #4. But, #3, who's now in K, would have to wait til she's in 5th grade to do Bigger with #4 and she'd miss the last 3 guides. I do have #1 and #2 in Bigger right now and my oldest will miss the last two guides, but I started them in later. I feel like I'd just be filling in the time for my DD, waiting for her to get to 5th so that they could share 4 guides.

 

My kids are 9, 7, 5, 2 and expecting next July. I didn't realize I didn't have a sig, lol. I'll go fix that.

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I sold all my HOD manuals, but I kept a majority of the books, because I plan to use them anyway. Some of them are in TOG, but the ones that aren't we'll either fit in where appropriate or I'll just let me kids read them independently as they desire. You don't have to get rid of your HOD books if you decide not to use the guides!

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I've been looking forward to Preparing for 3 years now. It's finally next year! Do I really want to jump ship now? IDK. SO hard to choose.

 

I forgot some more pros and cons, I'll add them up there, but for those who've already read I'll add them here too.

 

Pros for TOG:

 

I love the map CD

I love that there's tests and the student activity pages

 

Cons for HOD:

 

I end up making the maps. The kids colour and label them, but actually drawing an actual map of say, Jamestown, Pennsylvania and surrounding area or the Western coast of Europe is too detailed and difficult.

 

Do you think I could do TOG with HOD's books?

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I've never used HOD but used SL and own all the K-100 cores. I moved to TOG this year, and although we are only in our second unit I can say it is working very well for me with LU, UG and D. I still use my SL books, many are already scheduled or I fit them in where they would go. My oldest DD is an avid reader and usually reads all the assigned and alternate literature, for others DC coming up I can pick and choose what would work best for them. I enjoy having us all on the same page. I would have been teaching 3 SL cores again this year. :lol:

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I haven't used TOG, but I really, really like HOD. If you made the maps this summer before you start, the map thing would be a non-issue. I love the easiness of the open-go format with HOD, the book selection, and the biblical focus. I will be doing 3 guides next year, but don't see it being a big issue having them in 3 different time periods. We are doing Preparing with my dd and I am just so impressed with what she is learning and reading. So I am a bit biased when I say to go with HOD. I just think the map thing is overcomeable with a little preparation in the off months.

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Personally, I wouldn't choose either if you don't want to be teaching 4 different levels. If I HAD to choose one, it would be HOD. Although it didn't work for us this year, the books are incredible and the workload is manageable. I looked at TOG extensively and in hind sight am glad I did not go with it. As I'm sure you know-you do not have to do note booking or copy work just because it's in the program. Nor do you have to use everything in the program. I'm sure there are many workarounds for "drawing" the maps. It's very possible you just print a blackline map from the internet. You don't have to do the maps either-there are other ways your children could learn the same information. I would def. consider calling HOD and talking with them about your concerns with having 4 different grade levels. It really is a great curriculum.

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I did post on the board. Everyone there seems to think that doing many guides is preferably in order to keep them at their own level. Carrie said that sometimes combining is necessary.

 

I'm kinda hoping our next baby will come in 2013 so we can combine the one I'm PG with and that one.

 

The thing about the two I want to combine, but their too far is, in most of the US, I'm pretty sure she'd be in a younger grade. Her birthday is in Dec. But here in Ontario, all kids born in X year go to school together. So, they are only 2.5 years apart, but 3 school years. She's suppose to be K this year, but, she's not ready. She can do the math I have for her and she's learned her letters names and most sounds, but she's not able to blend. She needs more time.

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Keeping dc separate in grammar ages is somewhat easy, but as soon as they get a little older, they require more intense instruction and higher level materials. There is no way...no way...I could have my family in separate places in history; I simply do not have the time to prepare for 4 different years of history.

 

The beauty of TOG is found in flexibility. For some, the choosing becomes too hard, but if you can be flexible, you can use this program however you see fit for your family and stay on one course. You won't have to adjust the program or stretch, you have assignments for all the ages in one place, you'll simple make check marks or highlights and the "adjusting" is done.

 

Substituting books in TOG is easy breezy. I inherited a great deal of SL books and I sat down in my personal library, spending about an hour over the summer, subbing in books for TOG so I could reduce my public library usage. It worked out fine, every time. It was easy, painless, and allowed me to use what I have. That one hour included books for All Four Levels...I have 7 dc in school.

 

TOG IS Christ centered, but still flexible enough to secularize (should someone want to). Other religions are taught, just as the variety of Christian denominations are taught, but the teaching includes guidance towards Christ and the differences between all religions, if you go that way with book selection. It is approached respectfully, but from an honest Protestant point of view and is reflected well in the teacher's notes and the church history selections. Year 1 has a lot of other religions mentioned b/c it is a time of heavy paganism; while Year 2 focuses heavily on the church history of Christian churches b/c it is pertinent. Year 3 talks about the spread of Christianity and how Manifest Destiny played a Huge role in advancing across the continent. There is No lack of Christian teaching in this program. There are no apologies for Christianity either.

 

If you can devote some time in the summer to planning and printing, then weekly, TOG is EASY to get through. Yes, the older the dc get, the more work you'll have b/ you have to read teachers notes and lectures are suggested, but you'll have that anyways. Middle and high schoolers are independent more than grammar kids, but that doesn't mean they walk away from you and you don't really deal with them. If you're not teaching math, then a dvd is -- they still need instruction. I've learned the hard way over the past 3 years that a totally independent middle or high schooler is not possible if you plan on educating classically --- they Need instruction. TOG makes it possible for me to offer richness, rigor, but also to slim down to basics if we need the time for other things -- flexibility. This week is a perfect example: we have activities outside of the house 4 nights this week (unusual for us), so we're having a light week of school. I slimmed down grammar stage history to mapwork and singular reading; the D students are finishing up their question writing; the R students are finishing everything, too. In lieu of literature discussion, they will simply turn in their questions on paper. Flexibility :)

Edited by johnandtinagilbert
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Here is my thoughts for what they are worth. No matter if you use TOG or HOD you are going to have to use different levels of books for your children. The only difference is that with TOG you are studying the same time period, but you are still going to have to read books of varying levels. I really do not see what the difference is time wise. If you go with HOD you do not need to plan different history cycles, because everything is planned for you. That is the whole beauty of it, HOD is very open and go. We are still in the lower HOD guides, but looking at the upper guides it appears they get more and more independent.

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Here is my thoughts for what they are worth. No matter if you use TOG or HOD you are going to have to use different levels of books for your children. The only difference is that with TOG you are studying the same time period, but you are still going to have to read books of varying levels. I really do not see what the difference is time wise. If you go with HOD you do not need to plan different history cycles, because everything is planned for you. That is the whole beauty of it, HOD is very open and go. We are still in the lower HOD guides, but looking at the upper guides it appears they get more and more independent.

Actually, no you don't. The teacher's notes will give you all you need for thorough Socratic Discussion, answer's to questions and a little extra for discussion or lecture. I rarely read the D books, and only read the R books if I want to (and I do b/c I want to self educate, too). Being in the same time period makes a huge difference. What you learn in D or R via teacher's notes will transfer to younger levels; you'll read aloud w/ LG or UG and the info. will transfer -- you have less to remember b/c there is always crossover. It's not the same thing. No matter how independent the layout looks, you still have to teach and know material to successfully communicate. It is easier to communicate across One topic than to prepare yourself for more than one. You can combine a 2nd and 4th grader; or 3rd and 5th grader using the same materials. Many families use SOTW for LG and UG, so there is less teacher prep. It matters; especially when you have a large family (3, 4,or more) and a lot of kids in school. I know when your oldest is 7, it seems like less of a big deal, but for me, things really changed once we reached Logic stage, had lower and upper grammar....they changed a lot and using 1 level of TOG makes it all possible around here.

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Really I think the best thing for you to do would be take a good hard look at the 3 week DE samples, try to find someone local who has TOG so you can see it in person, or if not see if you can purchase 1 unit used either here or on Homeschool Classifieds, etc. to try it out before making a huge investment. Just make sure if you do purchase a unit used that you are getting the LOOM cd included, as that's imperative. Until you see TOG firsthand to compare it to your HOD manuals, you really can't get a good idea if it will work for you.

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I'd love to hear others experiences with both programs, especially if you've done both and chose one over the other. And if you chose neither and moved on, why and what did you choose?

 

I haven't used HOD mainly for the reasons you've shared - hard to combine. Also the program that would be geared for my oldest is what he's already done, so I'd still be having to come up with something else for him LOL.

 

We used TOG for 2 years. It was very overwhelming and confusing to use. I used the Redesigned version. The overview pages didn't actually overview the readings that were assigned. The teacher's notes didn't really jive either. Sometimes yes, but usually no. What I ended up with is a very expensive booklist, since that's the only thing that worked.:glare: I had to buy a R level atlas in order to do the LG level maps. There was no support for the UG levels at all. (I read the LG books aloud to my LG kids, and there are D and R helps. But nothing for UG, and since they are to read the books on their own, the teacher is at a loss.)

 

We moved to MFW and liked it a lot better. However, I have switched to Biblioplan for next year for a couple reasons: we only have been using the social studies/science from MFW, and my oldest is not ready to move into MFW high school next year. I feel like I can tailor BP a bit better in that regard.

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Really I think the best thing for you to do would be take a good hard look at the 3 week DE samples, try to find someone local who has TOG so you can see it in person, or if not see if you can purchase 1 unit used either here or on Homeschool Classifieds, etc. to try it out before making a huge investment. Just make sure if you do purchase a unit used that you are getting the LOOM cd included, as that's imperative. Until you see TOG firsthand to compare it to your HOD manuals, you really can't get a good idea if it will work for you.

Sound advice.

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Yep my oldest is 7.5, so I do not have experience with older grades, but I really still do not see the difference. No matter what program you use language arts ,and math is going to be seperate. With HOD they have questions and all prepaired for you as well. Also older children can read the material on their own. I really think it is just a matter of preference, and not really a time issue. If you are teaching 4 plus kids with any material it is going to take a large amount of time.

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I use both of these programs and have for several years. I'll comment below in red.

 

Ok, so, I think I've narrowed it down HOD or TOG.

 

My pros for HOD: I would agree

 

I love their books selections

I love how other religions are introduced, but not focused on

I the activities in the books

I love how lessons are short and sweet

 

My cons for HOD: I would also agree

 

The kids aren't all learning about the same subject

I'm going to have to teach at least 4, if not more, guides down the road

I end up making the maps. The kids colour and label them, but actually drawing an actual map of say, Jamestown, Pennsylvania and sourounding area or the Western coast of Europe is too detailed and difficult.

 

My pros for TOG: I haven't noticed a lot of OTHER religions being focused on at all. TOG is from a reformed christian viewpoint and on the surface that doesn't always show from looking at examples. I also think they focus on more world history than you think. I agree with the other statements.

 

I like the books 2nd best of all the curric. I've looked at, though they do focus on other religions and US history a bit more than I'd like.

The kids can all be learning about the same thing.

I love the map CD

I love that there's tests and the student activity pages

 

 

My cons for TOG: I haven't found TOG to be all that hard, however I guess I don't utilize the discussion questions as much as I should, however I still feel it has been a very rich experience. I also love most of their books, but occasionally I do change one out. I love how they have alternative titles and also how the program is not dependent on specific books. I love that I can tailor the program. I would also say that TOG is VERY VERY Christ centered.

 

Heavier work load for me

Don't have HOD's books

Doesn't appear to be as Christ centered as HOD

 

So, now I have to decided which pros and cons out weigh which. Is it really feasible to teach 4+ HOD TM's? How badly do I want my kids all learning about the same thing?:confused:

 

I wouldn't do 4+ teacher manuals. My daughter that uses HOD, is 13 and she uses the newest program completely independently. My other 3 use TOG. My oldest does most of it independently and my younger two work with me. They read most of the same books.

 

I'd love to hear others experiences with both programs, especially if you've done both and chose one over the other. And if you chose neither and moved on, why and what did you choose?

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That is rather true, but, I also like the idea of everyone being on the same subject so we sit around and talk about it and have a family discussion everyone can join in on. Especially if you buy that CD for dad's.

 

It's not just for Dad's. ;) I often listen to it before starting a week. :)

 

I just bought the Pop Quizes while they were on sale in Dec. I have never used them, but was thinking the same thing: what a nice start for me, too! I am looking forward to using them as soon as we move into Year 4 (spring this year).

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  • 2 months later...

I made the switch from TOG to HOD and I'm very happy we did. I just wanted to comment on 2 things with regard to HOD.

1. The use of maps - I COMPLETELY agree with you on the TOG map CD's. I LOVE them. But did you see that HOD has partnered with the same company and now has Map Trek CD's avail? They are scheduled in the upper years but if it's a big deal to you now I'm sure you could purchase them and just pull what you need (you could also do this by ordering the TOG map CD's if you wanted to).

 

2. Teaching different guides: I agree this is daunting. However, we made the choice to split up our kids by their level, which means that in the fall I will be teaching 4 separate guides. It will be hardest THIS year b/c it'll be MY first time through each guide - however in the years to come as the younger children move up I will have already taught that guide 1 or more times, so the prep level for me will be minimal. I will spend the summers prior to the beginning of the school year reading the books for my oldest dd's level (which will be new to me) so that I don't have to try to keep up with her throughout the school year. I don't know if that helps at all but this is the plan we've made.

 

TOG is a great program but it just didn't work for our family. :)

 

Blessings,

Caryn

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I made the switch from TOG to HOD and I'm very happy we did. I just wanted to comment on 2 things with regard to HOD.

1. The use of maps - I COMPLETELY agree with you on the TOG map CD's. I LOVE them. But did you see that HOD has partnered with the same company and now has Map Trek CD's avail? They are scheduled in the upper years but if it's a big deal to you now I'm sure you could purchase them and just pull what you need (you could also do this by ordering the TOG map CD's if you wanted to).

 

2. Teaching different guides: I agree this is daunting. However, we made the choice to split up our kids by their level, which means that in the fall I will be teaching 4 separate guides. It will be hardest THIS year b/c it'll be MY first time through each guide - however in the years to come as the younger children move up I will have already taught that guide 1 or more times, so the prep level for me will be minimal. I will spend the summers prior to the beginning of the school year reading the books for my oldest dd's level (which will be new to me) so that I don't have to try to keep up with her throughout the school year. I don't know if that helps at all but this is the plan we've made.

 

TOG is a great program but it just didn't work for our family. :)

 

Blessings,

Caryn

 

Caryn,

 

I'd love it if you'd share why TOG didn't work for you....please share why you jumped ship.:001_smile:

 

I do have to say that running 4 guides with HOD is a recipe for burn out!! If you are running Preparing, Bigger and Beyond with Little Hearts or Hands (not sure what guides you're planning to use based on the ages of your kids and what you're doing with HOD now) that is too much for you and not how HOD is intended to be used. Preparing is extremely full and mostly teacher directed. Bigger is a very big teacher directed year. Of course, you know how much time it takes to care for the littles and to teach the core subjects (math, language arts subjects).

 

Teaching that many guides with your age spread is not recommended by Carrie. Here is a thread where I asked these questions when I was considering running 3 guides (Little Hearts, Beyond, Bigger) so that each child could be "perfectly placed". Carrie strongly advised me NOT to do this. Here's the thread: http://www.heartofdakota.com/board3/viewtopic.php?t=8354

 

Without having used TOG beyond playing with DE and toying with scheduling out books & stuff I just can't see how using HOD this way is less overwhelming than TOG. The sheer number of guides to be opened and closed during the day, the flipping from this to this to this, the numerous texts that you will have to read, keeping Bible studies & history time periods straight, different selections for music, not to mention skill work for each kid etc. You should combine as much as possible and adjust skills appropriately. Your oldest can be independent if needed (in Preparing) while your youngers should be combined into one guide (Little Hearts perhaps) with adjustments made for the 7 year old in skill work (taking from Beyond or developing your own). Carrie has some excellent ideas for adjusting Little Hearts to be grade level appropriate for a 2nd grader (7 year old who is on the older end of the LHFHG guide).

 

I really think you should strongly consider running only 2 HOD guides, spending as much time as possible training your oldest to work independently. Give your younger students your best time & effort in their skill work, leaving content on the back burner (which is why combining them is ideal).

 

The "best" program for your family is the one that you can do and maintain a peaceful home. The pace has to be realistic and sustainable for all of you, but most of all YOU. HOD is a beautiful, rich, deep program but I do think it is challenging for large families with a tight age spread. HOD's strengths become the weakness for a large family. HOD has beautiful resources planned and they CAN be folded in to many other "programs" (TOG, MFW) if a Mom needs to circle the wagons for her sanity.

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UGH, I just wrote out a very detailed reply and had to walk away from the computer....my 3 year old deleted it. :glare:

 

Anyway. First I should explain our background - we have used: HOD, SL, TOG, AO, MFW and Veritas Press....because I basically had no idea what I was doing and kept curriculum hopping. I thought I REALLY wanted the Classical method but over time I've learned a great deal and realize that I actually want a CM method. I owned HOD several years ago and chucked it b/c I thought it wasn't as challenging as TOG would be - I also didn't understand the format b/c I didn't know about CM then.

 

Second, we've been using HOD Bigger, Beyond and LHTH with no problem (in terms of juggling 3 guides). I have 1 in Bigger, 2 in Beyond and 2 in LHTH so I do combine - but with 6 kids I can only combine SOOO much. My kids are very close in ages but they are NOT close in skill level. I made a poor decision in placement by purchasing Bigger and trying to combine my dd's 9 and 7. I have the extension package for my oldest but it's not challenging her and I had to move my 7 year old down to Beyond b/c she wasn't ready for Bigger skill wise. (She's only a 1st grader but my older dd is in 4th.) My oldest has already had TOG Y2 U3 and U4 (the Colonial period) and MFW Adventures so the history is largely review for her so far. She placed in either Preparing or CTC based on the HOD chart, but I moved her down just to combine them.....I should have just placed her in her own manual and I plan to move her up in the fall to CTC which is more fitting placement wise. I know that Carrie advises combining in most cases but in our case (with Bigger) it became more problematic than anything else.

 

Next year we will be doing CTC, Bigger (1/2 pace), Beyond (1/2 pace) and LHTH. I'm choosing to go 1/2 pace so that they kids don't progress too quickly (i.e. I don't want my son to be in Preparing as a 2/3 grader...)

 

I thought it would be really difficult to school this way - with the kids in separate guides, but it's not. I don't try to do them all at the same time. LHTH takes 15-20 minutes - during this time the other kids do their math. Then my oldest begins her independent work: Literature and Extension reading, English (R&S), Copywork and Dictation, Latin and any project from Bigger that she can do alone: art, science, mapwork whatever. While she does that I do the Beyond manual with the other 2. We're usually done with it all except maybe 1 of the 2 kids still needs to do Reading practice with me. If that happens I have my oldest take a break while I listen to the other child read (10 minutes or so usually). When the youngers are all done we do the remainder of Bigger. We usually start school around 9 or 9:30 and everyone's done by 1:30 (including taking our lunch break). As they age the workload will increase; but with HOD it largely becomes independent so my TEACHING time will vary but I don't have a problem with moving some schooltime to the evening with my older kids if I need to have book discussions etc. with them (which is also what many TOG families do).

 

Ok, now - why did we leave TOG? Well, we wanted to use a CM format and not classical is one reason. The most important reason is I wanted something with more Bible integration. Don't get me wrong, I believe that TOG is Christian and God-honoring; but I wanted a better daily integration. For example in TOG Y1 you read through the whole Bible (Yeah!) but in Y2, Y3 and Y4 you don't. Largely you just do Church History during those years, but not a specific Bible study. This is a fine method but I didn't want to add in a Bible study for all those years. HOD has it scheduled daily - for me this was a great plus.

 

Second: cost. We lived in a rural area with a very poor library system (and a TERRIBLE ILL policy) so we had to purchase all the TOG books. The way my kids line up we would not be re-using all of those books again. What I mean is, we purchased Y2 UG. The next time around I would need those same UG books but would also have to buy LG and Dialectic. The next time I would not need the LG books OR the Dialectic...it just depends on how your kids line up. With HOD I know that if I buy Bigger and plan it for 3rd grade - ALL of my little ones coming up will utilize that level and I won't be making additional purchases besides consumable items (if any). For us this really matters but in other households it may not be an issue. Also, although HOD is certainly not CHEAP....it does contain ALL of your child's subjects whereas TOG is really just History/Geography and Lit. Also, it saves ME time not having to write out daily lesson plans for all the extra subjects too - which is a big factor for me.

 

Third - in the long run I realized that it didn't really matter to me whether my kids were all together for history or not. Once we re-started HOD I really found our day is working well and the children are thriving which has made our days actually run smoother.

 

The other point you made is well taken - I'm still REALLY busy everyday. But I have 6 kids.....so I guess it's just how it is. Doing TOG would combine them for a history PERIOD, but it doesn't necessarily combine them on WORKLOAD. It also doesn't necessarily shorten Mom's day - but in some situations it might. If I was doing TOG I would still need to run a PreK and K program for my littler ones, so that became a non-issue in terms of our decision making. Ultimately it came down to the way Bible was integrated and the incorporation of all the additional subjects in a CM manner which won HOD for us.

 

I know that was quite rambling....so I hope it made sense. Let me know if you have more questions. :001_smile:

 

In the end, I still feel that TOG is a great curriculum but after much prayer we realized that HOD is where the Lord has taken us.

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I have a large family and we want a history-centered homeschool, and I have looked at and almost purchased TOG several times. It looks and sounds awesome to me, but whenever I really start studying the samples, it just doesn't click with me and I don't ever feel at ease about purchasing. So we haven't. Maybe I will in the future if I become dissatisfied with our current system.

 

We've been using HOD for two years now so I can speak to that. TOG combines children into history, HOD separates the history cycle into different guides. All other subjects are separated out into each child's level in either program. Correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe that is the case. I know philosphy is integrated in the history with TOG as well.

 

HOD does provide discussion helps and "teacher's notes" in their guides - they just aren't called teacher's notes. They are called the "key idea" and are noted in every box for every subject, in all levels of HOD. There are also discussion questions and prompts in various places throughout the program in all levels.

 

HOD is CM in nature, whereas TOG is classical in nature and that results in the main differences. Here are a couple of examples:

 

1) HOD will have you discussing things with your children in smaller portions, on a daily basis, on various things from the guides. Topics with prompts for discussion include things such as art appreciation, composer study, geography, character study, Bible study, Shakespeare, and the read-aloud books from the different genres. This is true of all levels. This is a CM method of education. TOG does an in-depth Socratic discussion for the upper levels once each week focused primarily on the history and philosophy studies that week. Other topics tied in as applicable may be pulled in here too, I'm not sure. I don't recall if there's a method of discussion with the grammar levels. You could have your children do narration of course with TOG as well.

 

2) HOD uses the CM method of narration to discuss history with the child. The history readings from Preparing on up are read independently. Then the child narrates to the parent, either orally or written, sometimes with illustrations, to organize and convey their thoughts and impressions of what they read. Natural discussion often follows this. TOG guides the parent in leading a Socratic discussion each week to accomplish this - as well as the skills developed from Socratic discussion. HOD's high school manuals aren't written yet so we can't really compare D and R level TOG with HOD yet. Although with HOD being CM in nature it will probably still have a narration emphasis, with an increased focus on written narrations, I'm guessing.

 

They both are great programs. It is a matter of which one appeals to you more and which one will actually GET DONE in your home. Carrie does write the HOD guides with the goal of having multiples guides used together. Using HOD with many children can absolutely be done with ease, because of the way the plans are written and the many helps included, regardless of the fact that the kids aren't on the same history cycle. With many children to educate, any program you use will challenge you and keep your hands full. I will say that I think combining in HOD is discouraged on the boards a wee bit much. I think you can combine a bigger age range than is recommended and be totally successful with HOD. It also will depend on which philosphy resonates more with you, Charlotte Mason or Classical (although there is quite a bit of overlap between the two).

 

MP

 

ETA: I am using/have used/about to use HOD's guides for my 15 yo dd down to my 4 yo dd (Rev to Rev, RTR, CTC, Preparing, Bigger, Beyond, Little Hearts and Little Hands)

Edited by home'scoolmom
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Well, I read some of the posts but not all or very thouroghly. We tried HOD with 3 guides and I just felt like there was not time to actually enjoy what we were doing, I love the guides and books but all that was gone at the end of the day. It was doable, but, it was just work, hurry onto the next thing so we can finish kind of day. I do not have experience with TOG, so I am no help with that. BUT, we just started Learning Adventures, A World of Adventure with the new K-3 Supplement ( I am not suggesting you use this program, but it is all one time period and literature, Bible, and Lang. Arts are covered you just read different books for different levels) for my children grades 6/7, 4, 2, K and PreK and it is working out really nicely, AND we are all enjoying it. It allows the freedom and independence for my 6/7 grader she likes and I work with all the youngers, but I know exactly what my older child is studying without having to figure out another program. We have long full days, but we are enjoying our days now. I also feel it has brought us all closer together.

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I just re-read some of the posts and just wanted to say, if you are thinking about doing Preparing, Bigger, Beyond and Little Hearts all at the same time, (or anything even close to it) no no no no! You would need a padded room and a helmet by the end of the first week. :D Bigger is the most teacher-intensive guide. We are just finishing it up and beginning Preparing, which is the year of transition to more independence. You need to get a good program combination going. Post on the HOD board until you get a good response from either Carrie or Julie. Or just email Carrie directly, this is what I did two years ago to get my placement and she was very gracious and helpful. This year we used CTC, Bigger, and Little Hearts. While it was very doable, I wouldn't have wanted more mainly because Bigger is a teacher-intensive guide. This coming year we are doing Rev to Rev, RtR, Preparing and Beyond. Rev to Rev and RtR will be done mostly independently by my oldest two.

 

As far as maps go, you know they say the best way to learn geography is to draw your maps, then you will never forget it. :001_smile: This does result in a messier map, but it does work for rentention and understanding. As far as notebooking, that is for retention and comprehensionpurposes as well, and having a finished product to look back on. But if you hate it, there's no law that says you can't skip it! :D

Edited by home'scoolmom
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I have only quickly skimmed some of the responses so forgive me if I am repeating anything. I have not used TOG so have no experience there.

 

I think your two cons with HOD can easily be remedied.

 

1) As someone has already said, you can combine a couple or even maybe 3 of your children into a guide by using the extensions and their own level math & LA. I know some parents may even buy the guide that the student fits in with to schedule the math & LA while combining them in a younger guide for history and science. So there should be no need to ever be using more than 3 guides. Also remember that if there is, the older they get the more independent they are (usually) and it shouldn't be as teacher intensive for you.

 

 

2) You can always buy a map CD and use it with HOD. In fact in the older guides Carrie has a map CD that goes with them. Some of my children hated picking up a pencil so instead of having them draw a map (which I am sure is a great skill just not a battle that I wanted to fight at the time) I just copied the map into Paint, took out the areas that were already labeled and had them labeled it....or I looked for a similar map online and printed it out and had them label.

 

HTH

 

Kay

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I have a large family and we want a history-centered homeschool' date=' and I have looked at and almost purchased TOG several times. It looks and sounds awesome to me, but whenever I really start studying the samples, it just doesn't click with me and I don't ever feel at ease about purchasing. So we haven't. Maybe I will in the future if I become dissatisfied with our current system.

 

We've been using HOD for two years now so I can speak to that. TOG combines children into history, HOD separates the history cycle into different guides. All other subjects are separated out into each child's level in either program. Correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe that is the case. I know philosphy is integrated in the history with TOG as well. In the D and R levels, philosophy, government, and church history or integrated, along with history, literature, and geography.

 

HOD does provide discussion helps and "teacher's notes" in their guides - they just aren't called teacher's notes. They are called the "key idea" and are noted in every box for every subject, in all levels of HOD. There are also discussion questions and prompts in various places throughout the program in all levels.

 

HOD is CM in nature, whereas TOG is classical in nature and that results in the main differences. Here are a couple of examples:

 

1) HOD will have you discussing things with your children in smaller portions, on a daily basis, on various things from the guides. Topics with prompts for discussion include things such as art appreciation, composer study, geography, character study, Bible study, Shakespeare, and the read-aloud books from the different genres. This is true of all levels. This is a CM method of education. TOG does an in-depth Socratic discussion for the upper levels once each week focused primarily on the history and philosophy studies that week. There are also discussions for literature, government and church history. Each area of study offers questions for the student and also notes for the teacher that include in-depth answers to the elective topics. Other topics tied in as applicable may be pulled in here too, I'm not sure. I don't recall if there's a method of discussion with the grammar levels. You could have your children do narration of course with TOG as well. We do narration and notebooking for the grammar stages, as well as, include the WTM summaries, outlining, etc. We prefer CM in the early years and I've found that TOG works into that Very Easily. On the spot we prefer classical (book selection), TOG takes care of that, but also affords easy substitution if I find something from AO that I want to incorporate.

 

2) HOD uses the CM method of narration to discuss history with the child. The history readings from Preparing on up are read independently. Then the child narrates to the parent, either orally or written, sometimes with illustrations, to organize and convey their thoughts and impressions of what they read. Natural discussion often follows this. TOG guides the parent in leading a Socratic discussion each week to accomplish this - as well as the skills developed from Socratic discussion. HOD's high school manuals aren't written yet so we can't really compare D and R level TOG with HOD yet. Although with HOD being CM in nature it will probably still have a narration emphasis, with an increased focus on written narrations, I'm guessing.

 

They both are great programs. It is a matter of which one appeals to you more and which one will actually GET DONE in your home. AMEN! Carrie does write the HOD guides with the goal of having multiples guides used together. Using HOD with many children can absolutely be done with ease, because of the way the plans are written and the many helps included, regardless of the fact that the kids aren't on the same history cycle. With many children to educate, any program you use will challenge you and keep your hands full. AMEN! I will say that I think combining in HOD is discouraged on the boards a wee bit much. I think you can combine a bigger age range than is recommended and be totally successful with HOD. It also will depend on which philosphy resonates more with you, Charlotte Mason or Classical (although there is quite a bit of overlap between the two). AMEN AGAIN!

 

MP

 

ETA: I am using/have used/about to use HOD's guides for my 15 yo dd down to my 4 yo dd (Rev to Rev, RTR, CTC, Preparing, Bigger, Beyond, Little Hearts and Little Hands)

great post!

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This question is for kidsnbooks8 and anyone else that cares to comment.

 

I have actually used Learning Adventures with a couple of my older kids, but I am now considering Heart of Dakota. I guess I kind of like the books picked out for me vs. having to pick out my own, just because of time constraints and planning issues. I was wondering what you think about that issue, picking your own books vs. having them already picked out for you. Any comparisions between the two curriculums would be appreciated.

 

Any responses from anyone would be appreciated.

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This question is for kidsnbooks8 and anyone else that cares to comment.

 

I have actually used Learning Adventures with a couple of my older kids, but I am now considering Heart of Dakota. I guess I kind of like the books picked out for me vs. having to pick out my own, just because of time constraints and planning issues. I was wondering what you think about that issue, picking your own books vs. having them already picked out for you. Any comparisions between the two curriculums would be appreciated.

 

Any responses from anyone would be appreciated.

Not quite exactly sure what you're asking, but try to answer.:) If I'm wrong about your question, maybe you could clarify it more for me. We use HOD and yes, the books are picked out for you. The only ones you specifically pick out are the Storytime Books. There's different packs, boy/girl/classic packs. You can look through all 3 and mix and match or you could just pick one pack and go with that. With that being said, all the history, science, etc. books are pre-picked for you. HTH!

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