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Help me beef up my curriculum


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Up until Nov, DS took about 90% of my energy during our school time. Now that he's in PS, I'm finding that I'm capable of doing more, and I'm considering how I might make the younger girls' educations a little more rigorous.


This is what we're doing so far (they are in 1st and 2nd grades):


Bible Study Guide for All Ages (and/or Scripture memory)

SOTW, Science, or Art (1x/week each except SOTW, which is often 2x/week)

Math (2nd grader does TT3, 1st grader does MUS Alpha)

Spelling Workout

30 min. of reading (2nd grader usually does more on her own)


To me, the most glaring hole is writing--we were doing WWE2, but dropped it when DS started school. Neither of them was ready for it. So we could go back and redo WWE1, or do something different. Neither of them really need penmanship practice. We are also in an enrichment co-op one day a week--the classes are fairly meaty, but not anything I would factor into our normal curriculum.


Why do I feel like we need to add anything? Mostly because the girls have a lot of free time now, and so do I. They are able to do more than they currently are.


My ideas about what to add are these: more time doing math, a supplemental math curric, more time reading independently, American history, definitely a writing curric, maybe a reading curric. Or I could just leave the time open (and the TV off) and let them develop their interests.


What would you do? Thanks in advance!

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I have the same situation with my kids, especially with my first grader who seems to blow through her school work very quickly. Here are various programs I have used so far that can work well as supplements. Maybe you will like something on this list.


Math: Singapore's Challenging Word Problems workbook, Singapore's Mental Math (which starts at grade 2), MEP worksheets.


Writing: Winning With Writing is solid and can be added to other writing curricula; Evan Moor How to Report on Books, and How to Write a Story.


Reading Comprehension: Evan Moor's Skill Sharpeners Reading Workbook


Logic: Building Thinking Skills (Critical Thinking Co.)




Public Speaking: A Beka's Oral Language Lessons


Memory work


History: For American history for 1st-2nd, I have enjoyed using Edward Eggleston's A First Book in American History, and Stories of Great Americans for Little Americans. Making lapbooks is also a great way to supplement history.

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Yes, we're definitely light on LA. I think we'll probably redo WWE1, since I already have it and I don't think they'll remember it well enough to find it repetitive. Maybe add in another silent reading time, too....and maybe load up on art supplies and other things that they will enjoy. I do want them to be able to find interesting, worthwhile things to do during unstructured time and not need every moment planned for them.


Thanks, everyone, for helping me think through this!

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I am finding it difficult to fit everything in during the day...


What time do you start? What time do you end? Do you take breaks?


My kids start on their Awanas in the morning-Awanas takes forever for some reason.

Then the older girls do TT5 and Key To Fraction.

Younger one does her calendar and vision dexterity tech drawing

one of the DD9s also does the vision dexterity tech drawing.

I may give a lesson with BJU/Saxon book as TT5 is just review and Key To Fraction doesnt explain some stuff that BJU/Saxon does to the older ones.

They may do their music which consists of them going over the words to their music they will sing for chorus. I cut the lines up and they put the song together.

Younger ones does TT3 and I teach a RSB lesson to her.

AAS3 for one of the twins while ones does Study Island or Vocab.com or Dreambox, spelling power for the other twin. AAS2 for the dd7 and they alternate, Idioms for the dd9's.

Phonics Pathways, FLL1 for DD7

FLL3 for dd9's.

In addition they write a narration for a library book when we are not doing Nanowrimo.

And if we are not doing Nanowrimo it is wwe. Plus there is Latin. Hands on Equations just on Fridays. Gardening time and write up.

(We have Writing Prompts as required from our charter school)

Somewhere we add in chores and PE and lunch and of course some breaks as my 2 yo son is also in the mix along with his ABA therapists coming in and out all day and he basically runs from them to be with me constantly.


On our history and science days I do require the dd7 to do phonics pathways, fll1 too and of course all of them does math on those days.


Either way-everyday is a long day.


I wrote my list so maybe you can use some of my ideas to beef things up.. I feel really beefed.

Edited by happycc
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How about some notebook work in the afternoons. You could print up premade notebooking pages or do it freestyle with what you learned in history, science, or whatever. You could put lapbook components into a notebook and have them work independently on that.


Give them a free reading time where they read whatever they want for 30 minutes on top of their assigned reading?

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  • 4 months later...

I agree with adding a little more in the LA dept. Maybe writing and grammar? We use WWE and FLL. If they were not ready for WWE, they might be now or you could try winning with writing if that is more what you are looking for. FLL is light and fun but doing a good job here for grammar.


Also, you could add to your history and science. Are you using the SOTW AG? Lots of hands on, supplemental books and projects, coloring, maps. We make good use of the AG and add lots of lit. You could just add copy work and narrations from here for writing, dd likes notebooking, which I just print a word doc with a big box at the top for her to color a pic of what we read, and lines at the bottom for me to write her narration.


For first grade we do 2-3 days for SOTW, and 2 days for science.

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