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What did you FINISH this year and was it worth it?


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The whole planning thread left me thinking. It's so fun to buy piles of stuff, and make lists of all that stuff, and post what we DREAM we will do. But the reality is that most families are only seriously on task for 18 hours or less a week, not counting free reading and edutainment.


Bible: 2 hours

Foreign Language: 1 hour

Math and Finances: 3 hours

English: 2 hours

Literature: 2 hours

Social Studies: 2 hours

Science: 2 hours

Practical Arts: 1 hour

Performing/Dramatic Arts: 1 hour

Computer/Research/Study Skills: 1 hour

PE Health: 1 hour


Okay so...what did you FINISH this year? And was it worth it? If you finished an expensive unit study that was oh so much fun, did skills get neglected? Of if you finished Saxon math and IEW did the $300.00 unit study get so discarded you can't even remember where it is? Did your holy book get dusty? Did art, music and PE never even happen?


How does this year and your next year's plan compare? Is it realistic to expect so much more?


I realized I kept falling back to Bedell. I'd put it away and try to do "better" and fail, and go back to just reading Bedell to myself and any tutoring student who wanted some science and social studies. It sits in the pile by the read aloud chair under the Bible...and it's easy and gets DONE :-0


I wonder if I should just plan for reality? After I thought about my list, I laughed at myself. My reality is about 10 hours on task for my own self-education, and less than 10 hours on task with any of my students. Shopping and forum participation are not self-education or even time spent prepping to teach, but I know I'm going to spend more time wasted than on task.


Is anyone else having a reality moment?

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Fun question.


I waste too much time online, but I think that I do get a lot from it. And I do it during the day while I am sitting beside my 7 yr old keeping her on task :) I have to sit there, so I do stuff like the checkbook, calendar, online, etc.


So what got done? Everything pretty much as usual. We will finish 90% of our maths and english as usual. We are on track to finish SOTW as usual by Sept. It takes us a full calendar year, not school year to do it.


The only thing that we go off on rabbit trails with is science usually, and I don't spend $ on a big curric for it. We study topics from a few books and go on field trips, and do experiments. So we did not get to all of the topics that I would have liked, but we did a lot of ones that I didnt' anticipate. So nothing wasted here that I can think of... Everything in my sig is getting done regularly.


I am nervous about next year as we move into the logic stage. I have big plans. But I always do, and we always get it done somehow.

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We finished (or are finishing up) what I deem the most important things.


We read the Bible most every day, read lots every day, went past my expectations in math, finished grammar, met expectations in spelling, did very well with writing.


My reality check was today, looking through my lovely Veritas Press history cards, and knowing my kids could not put them in exact order the way VP tells us to do, or answer many of the test questions. They have learned plenty, just not what VP says they should have. :tongue_smilie: We never finished Caesar's English 1. I did not do as much science this spring as I wanted, even though eldest read a lot on his own. I have fabulous resources for picture study and Calvert for art history, but fell short on getting them done every week. That's okay, we will still use them, it will just take a little longer.


I really don't feel bad about it. I didn't waste nearly as much money this year as I have in the past. I used my library more than ever. I shy away from unit studies and expensive all-in-one programs.

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We have nearly finished MFW ECC and really enjoyed it! I will stick with MFW for next year but may do my own science. This years science was good, but next year looks really weak and doesn't fit with the WTM model.


MUS - we did for several years and finished many levels, but as we neared the end of it mid-year we jumped ship to Rightstart math. We may end up back with MUS at some point. Rightstart is super teacher intensive and I don't know if that will work for us.


We totally jumped ship on Easy Grammar and moved over to FLL which we love right now, but give me a few months. We've only been using it for 2 months. We've hopped around with phonics.


Man, writing it down, it sounds terrible. The only thing we're really finishing this year is MFW. :glare:

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Reading this has made me realize i have a real issue finishing things. We almost finished HWOT PreK and then we jumped to the K version. We also almost finished What Your Preschooler Should Know and then we jumped ship to FIAR which we not finished at all.


What we did finish was ETC A,B,C, 1, 1 1/2, 2, and are currently working on 3. This series has been a great fit for us. I would also say HWOT just didn't think the number practice at the end of the prek book was that good. I got some number individual books HWOT that we have done that were awesome!

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We tried a few things this year, and some stuff I bought and didn't even get to using yet. This was our first year hsing.

We are finishing Singapore 1

We finished Hooked on Phonics

We are finishing HWT.

Some Kumon books we skimmed through because they moved way too slow, and some I didn't even finish with DS because of all the writing-he just hated it.


Miquon-sat on the shelf. Singapore worked great and since Miquon was not open up and go, it didn't get done.

Same with Tapestry of Grace. I am going to be selling both of those. I never even bought the books for TOG. I think it will be great when the kids are in middle or high school, it's entirely too much planning for me to handle right now.

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We finished:

First Language Lessons

Spelling Workout (almost)

Saxon math

Adventures in America

Lots of read alouds


I can't seem to stick with it:

-a single science topic (we do science consistently, but I keep jumping around in topics. I don't think we'll manage a faithful 4 year cycle.)

-art!!! How do I find time to do this???

-music? I purchased a bunch of materials, never made a concrete plan of how to use them. I think my poor dc are going to end up musically challenged just like their parents!

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I am SOOOOO excited that we finished OPGTR a few weeks ago. We really should have celebrated that and didn't (I need to remember to do that) and I didn't even really get to brag to anyone about it because I don't really have anyone I can talk to who understands. So, I'm telling everyone here now! My two sons are easily reading a 5th grade Pathway's reader and I'm pretty sure one of them could read the 6th grade one. Yeah!! (We started OPGTR before this school year though so we probably spent about 1.5 to 2 years on it altogether.)


We finished HWT K, 1st and we are very close to finishing cursive, which is 3rd I think. (We skipped 2nd.) Both boys have made huge progress with their handwriting.


Although we started OPGTR before this year, this is our first official year of homeschooling. We started off the year doing K (OPGTR, HWT K, Math 1st grade level) and then moved to all first grade work in January, including FLL 1, WWE 1, SOTW 1 w/TOG Yr1, AAS 1, science and math.


We tried using Spelling Workout and ETC (for spelling). However, we had already played around with AAS a while back and the boys remembered how much fun they thought it was so SW and ETC were definitely out and we are using AAS1.


We started 1st grade using NOEO Biology for science and I was really excited about it. It didn't take long before I was not so thrilled with it and I dropped it and we started Apologia Astronomy. One of my sons is very into this right now and the other finds it interesting also so I knew that would be a hit. We are doing the Jr. Notebooking also and we are all really enjoying it. I think we will give NOEO another shot after we finish the Astronomy. Maybe we just had a couple of blah experiments and it will get better.


Math has been the most difficult one for us, in the sense of trying to find one that fits my sons and me both. We started off using SM 1A but none of us really liked it. At some point we added Miquon w/c-rods and we were all enjoying it. We did that up to where they were getting ready to start adding double digits, which I didn't think the boys were ready for. We already had RS K, so I threw some of that in to see if we might try combining SM and Miquon or RS and Miquon, or something like that but none of the combos seemed to work for us. After a bit more research, we moved to MM and I think this is going to work for us. I am very hopeful this is the one. I was hoping to find it quickly and then stick with it all the way, as long as it is working for us. We are almost half way through it now.


So, a couple of big successes (we are also loving SOTW and TOG) and several instances of bouncing around, trying to find the right fit. Overall, I feel that we have had a successful first year and we will keep doing what we are doing for now.

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Well, this is our first year. The way we started it is WAY different than how we're finishing!!


We used and completed: Abeka Science 3; Abeka History 3; LifePac Math 3; an Analogies workbook; and a Scholastic Maps workbook. Pretty simple stuff, but it got done. :D Oh, and the first five LOF books. And Grammar Island (working on the rest of level now).


Math already got switched. Once we finished LP and needed to move to the next level, we tried several things before we settled on a plan. Right now we're using CLE and supplementing with Singapore... we'll keep LOF as fun readings. I think we'll continue that route with all three, and finish at the end of summer, in time to start the next levels for next school year.


I haven't made decisions on other things yet for next year, still working on that.


What we tried and scrapped: Abeka Math; LLATL; Singapore as core curriculum; and a couple options for Bible.


The jury is still out on whether we'll ever finish Prima Latina or WWW 3, LOL!!

Edited by SunnyDays
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We are finishing



RSO Earth and Space

Wordly Wise

HWOT - cursive books


We bombed on Shurley English but we are still plugging along. We are still in the middle of AAS and Road Trip USA, which we started late in the year.


I also bombed on History. I picked the wrong programs for them but we made up for it in the end. We were able to produce a beautiful scrapbook for California History and we are making progress with American History.


For next year, I am planning on buying less books and try for more solid curriculum. I learned a lot about my kids learning styles and what works and what doesn't work. I am really pleased that Science got done and that they enjoyed it. I thought it would be harder. I think next year will be better then this one. Even though we had a good year, I think we could have done better. :001_smile:

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We school year round, and when I switched to classical I just put the girls in the same year to make my life easier. Both girls have finished SOTW 1 and are working on SOTW 2 now. We finished a combination of R.E.A.L. Science and Elemental Science Biology and have started Elemental Science Earth and Space Science (though we are doing astronomy now because it's a current rabbit trail). DD1 is reading and watching lots of documentaries on the subject. Right now the mention of space toilets gets a lot of giggles. :confused: We have Artistic Pursuits, and we love it but it didn't get done a whole lot. We are planning to attack this over the summer as they really enjoy it.


DD1 finished FLL 1 and 2 and started 3 as well as finishing WWE1 and is now half way through 2. We finished MIF 2A but realized that while she knew how to do the problems, she had never learned her facts and the presentation wasn't fit for her. We started at the beginning with MUS and in the last 2 months have done alpha and are nearly done with beta. She's retaining, so I am not arguing. We will complete gamma and then probably start with BA 3a as the books really grabbed her attention and math is not her favorite subject. We supplement with MM right now. She is slowly working through Lively Latin 1 and is enjoying it quite a bit. I knew being so young would slow her down, but she really loves the stimulation she gets from it.


DD2 finished FLL 1 and began FLL 2 and is still working on WWE 1. Her writing and reading give her trouble, and we didn't realize that she was farsighted and was having trouble because of that until recently. Her reading and writing abilities have really blossomed since then but she is still slow with it. I think she's fine considering she just turned 6 and how quickly she is catching on. Math went pretty well for us this year. She finished MIF 1a and most of 1b, but I really didn't like how dependent she was on the pictures and counting on her fingers. I wanted her to add. We switched to MUS and she's adding and understands place value. She's about half way through alpha. She'll be ready for beta sometime this summer.

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Hmmm... I haven't finished one particular book usually, but I have finished teaching a level of material, if that makes sense. For example, I hopped around a bit with grammar, but my 2nd grader knows 3rd grade level grammar, so hopping around didn't make much difference. We changed math mid-year, and I guess I can say we finished MM4A, parts of 4B, and Singapore 4A. We'll finish Singapore 4B before the end of the school year, I think.


We finished SOTW1 around October and continued into SOTW2. My son finished the whole series, so we've switched to Sonlight. The SOTW books very much got used, just not during "school". :D


We finished WWE1 and started WWE2. I plan to finish WWE2, though it might go into next school year a bit, which is fine. We didn't start it at the same time as anything else.


My son is now capable of copying a paragraph length piece of writing; analyze a sentence from real literature for nouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs, prepositional phrases, predicate nominatives, predicate adjectives, direct objects, and indirect objects; add, subtract, multiply, and divide (with facts memorized); spout off random facts from various parts of world history and even make comments about a Bible class "crown" his brother brought home, saying it "looks like King Narmer's crown"; he can tell me about the planets and various animals, plus "fire is a plasma"; he has developed a love of reading and always has his nose in a book; and Bible knowledge... wow.


With all that, I think I've had a successful 2nd grade year, whether I've finished a particular book or not. My goal is to teach my child, not the curriculum. So no, I haven't finished much curriculum, per se, but I have successfully USED that curriculum to teach my child what he needs to know (and beyond) for 2nd grade.


I just got back from the Memphis homeschool convention and feel recharged. I'm looking forward to some different things next year and also some things that will be the same next year. My main focus will still be on SKILLS, since he'll be in 3rd grade. Whether I finish a book won't matter. If I have taught the skills I wanted to teach for the year, that's what is important. Sometimes I mix it up and pull from different curricula, so we haven't finished either one, but I've conveyed the material needed for the year, and we've done the subject every year.

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We finished quite a bit this year. I made a extra effort to finish things rather than trying to do too much and not finish anything. Dd finished Best Poems, Thinkwell Pre-Algebra and PLATO Earth Science. She will complete Mapping the World with Art, Wordly Wise, and Language Mechanics by June.


Some things we didn't finish or get to quite as often as I would have liked are Rosetta Stone...I wanted her to do it at least 4 days a week and she did it regularly but not quite that regularly, art...I had a curriculum planned but dd found she enjoyed making doll rooms out of cardboard and stuff so she did a lot of that in her spare time, history...we did it every week but found a lot of bunny trails to follow and did not get past the American Revolution, and music theory...didn't do as often as I wanted.


We had quite a few illnesses and appointments or changes in lesson times effect things. All in all we had a very productive year.

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Let's see. Well I would say we *finished* FIAR. I mean we have been using it pretty consistently for nearly 3 years and will continue. We have rowed and re-rowed. So while we are continuing we have completed almost all of vols 1-3 more than once and some of vol 4.


We are almost finished with Rod and Staff Math 1. We tried to have more *fun* with Singapore and colorful ABeka. Just went crawling right back to R&S. Dd is starting to appreciate it more now and she is very much looking forward to year 2 with the bees and blossoms.


Pentime book 1 done. Transition started.


Though not finished, we have been consistent reading from Vos Bible stories. I am trying to keep dd memorizing scripture, but this is a hard one. She can do 1 or 2 and it goes well, but try to memorize 6 or more over time and it doesn't seem to stick.


We only do extras like art observation or music appreciation when they relate to our studies. I have given up on making that a consistent subject. PE happens when dd runs around outside. Gardening, etc are life skills that happen all the time.


We read from OFE and AO scheduled books when we want to. We usually like those at night time. If our school day is short then we may read from one of them after our other work is done.


How this compares to next year?

Well we have started (we school year round) Prairie Primer which we will alternate with FIAR, and LLATL which we will alternate with PLL. The rest shall remain the same but our days will be a bit longer.


Looking back to when I schooled my olders....I don't think there was ever a year that we didn't finish (at least 90% of what we decided to stick with. We did drop somethings that didn't work though. But we schooled year round then too. I don't do well with schedules.

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Singapore Maths - Love this program. It suits both my teaching style and my daughters learning style.

Songlight P3/4 - Love the books, but Sonlight wasn't for us, see more below


Didn't Finish:

Sonlight P4/5 - We loved most of the books listed (and did finish the books we liked, and have read them over and over again), we didn't like the LA as it was centred on writing. Also didn't like chopping/changing in books, and the amount of books a day. My kids LOVE me reading books to them (and daddy, who reads 2-3 books plus part of a chapter book every night) but they really don't want to do that of a day, they're young, and they want to make, create and pretend.


Readying Skills (forgot what its called, the set of 4 skills books that come with the Sonlight package) - This nearly killed Atlas, the repetition was enough to drive us both nuts, it was basically the same thing over and over again, and its stuff they easily know (my just turned 3yo knows most of the stuff in here, from learning naturally)


Handle on the Arts Supplements - This was used for Sonlight package. It was the MAIN reason we suck with Sonlight for as long as we did, but once we stopped using the Sonlight planner, HOTA kind of fell to the weigh side, as its divided by week, not book. I do like their stuff though.


Explode the Code - I had the wallchart, and Primers, and for us, the Wallchart we couldn't tell what half the things specifically were, and the Primers was too much writing for DD, and whilst I initially stuck with it, I realized once we got further along, she was forgetting things a few lessons behind, so it just wasn't sticking in her head. We stopped at after finishing Book B, and it was basically like she hadn't done it at all a week after that :glare: We did all the extras from the TM, included the games/activities, finger pointing as well as the actual workbooks, but obviously it just wasn't for her. She learnt more in a day with Leapfrog videos then she did with 20 weeks of ETC.


The original reason I used a "boxed" curriculum was so I could research more over the year, and I pretty much worked from both using Sonlight & from researching, that my children just learn better with dramatic play, crafts and very very hands-on stuff. Just from ocassionally hearing a word of two from me, then occasional doco, over the holidays, my daughter has picked up a lot of what will be in our new schoolyear. So I just interweaved their natural learning style with the kinds of things that best suited them and their interests. Its taken a lot of tweaking, but I think this year is going to be amazing, we start on 21st May, so I guess by the end of the year, I guess I'll know whether it was a hit or a flop. My main goal for the year is Phonemic Awareness for Chaos & Eve, and Getting Atlas to read. Anything else is just gravy :)

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I am coming to grips with the idea that lapbooks are not my son's learning style. He has never liked cutting/pasting so that should have been clue #1. I thought I would let him do all the writing and I would cut/paste. That was very short-lived. ;) I found out that the notebooking style works MUCH better for us and we really enjoyed some unit studies by Amanda Bennett. All that to say, I had to tweak our curriculum a lot this year due to the fact that there was lots of lapbooking {like in Apologia's junior science notebooks and Road Trip USA}.


The past 2 years we had finished all that I'd hoped we would but this year, we won't get it all done b/c of some mid-year changes...and that is okay by me. We all are happier now.


What we WILL finish:


Apologia Human Anatomy {had to tweak but much better now}

BJU Math 2

Prima Latina

Reading {no curriculum, but I am pleased at where my son is}

Geography {dropped Road Trip, did our own thing}

Bible- Proverbs People {we LOVED this!}

Music- Children's Choir


What we will NOT finish:

Winning with Writing {switched late in the school year from FLL}

Grammar {again, dropped FLL and picked up WWW and thought it was a grammar program so we will do some light grammar work this summer to do a little "catch up"}

History {yes, hanging head low...I had big hopes to start SOTW this year but it did not happen. We read LOTS of books and did a few mini-studies on different historical figures and events}

HWOT 2 {it's 3/4 done...I feel like we do lots of other writing throughout the day and I see improvement, so this would have just been busywork}

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We are just finishing up with our last year of HOD within a couple of weeks. DD6 finished Happy Handwriting, AAS 1, and Alphaphonics. DS8 finished R&S 2, AAS 1 & 2, and is finishing Cheerful Cursive. With Bible, language arts and math we will finish the levels they are working on and then continue with the next through the summer. We have just recently started some new things (IEW PAL) and will continue with those through the summer. The only thing we started the year with and won't finish is DITHOR- it just didn't fit well! Oh, I forgot- I was trying to find a less teacher intensive spelling program so we tried Building Spelling Skills (CLP) but it lasted one day (if that!) in our house. We went back to AAS pretty quickly!

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Well, my 3rd grader finished vision therapy!! She had tracking and convergence issues that affected her ability to write. She has improved so much in reading and writing. She is also finishing up PR 1 and we will start PR2 and do some lightly over the summer along with some math. She reads almost to grade level.


My 5th grader has finished PR1 and PR2 in about a calender year and is now working on PR3.


We are also on track to finish TOG year 1 by the end of the year which I am really excited about. I tried SL and MFW and never finished them!


Math has gone a little bit slower this year but they both are on track for pre-algebra by 8th grade.So we will focus more on math and IEW writing next year.

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We are almost finished with:

CLE math-ds-love CLE math-always worth it

FLL 3-questionable; retention seems minimal

SOTW-worth it

Apologia flying creatures-meh, kinda boring, minimal retention

Essentials in Writing for dd-worth it

Prima Latina-not worth it



Things we didn't finish:

IEW--jumped ship half way through...ds hated it:(

Sequential Spelling--I just suck at fitting this in

Artistic Pursuits--love it, just rare we have time

Any math program with dd--she has special needs and hits a wall with every program:(

Edited by hsbaby
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LoF Fractions, Singapore 3B-4B

MPH Science

Hey Andrew 3 (Not worth it-DD found it boring and WAY too repetitive)



Will finish before the end of our year or over the summer


SL core 3/4 (At this point, DD has read most of the readers, but we still have read-alouds to finish)

Complete book of US History

Dance (set recital date)

Piano (set recital date)

Lab science class (set number of sessions)


Will not finish

Complete book of Presidents and States (we'll get through the presidents, but the US states study I'd planned to do in our 2nd year of US history is being set aside because DD wants to go back to World history-it's more "fun"-and since state history isn't even covered in PS until 5th grade, I don't see a big deal in putting it off)

Cambridge Latin

Spelling or Reading Basal-DD enjoys these, but honestly, they seem a waste of time to me. She'll probably use them to play school.


Daily Handwriting, Daily Editing, Daily Word Problems-I printed them out, bound them for DD, and she did them well for about 6 months, and then we BOTH got bored. Again, she'll probably use them to play school

Spanish For Children-Retention was horrible, so dropped mid-year, and never quite found a good replacement. DD mostly just did mini-books from Scholastic and watched Disney channel shows in Spanish for the last half of the year. I've yet to finish a Spanish curriculum with her.



Really didn't even start

Artist study. I believe I made it through the first three sets of cards, Mike Venezia books, and other resources before I stopped even trying.

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This was our first formal year of schooling and my son and I seem to get an inordinate amount of satisfaction from reaching the last page in a book. Who knows if that will continue in the future, but for now...



Draw Write Now, book 1

Get Ready for the Code, book A

Get Set for the Code, book B

Hooked on Phonics Learn to Read, pre-k

Who Am I? Image of God, preschool workbook


Will finish by June:

Go for the Code, book C

Hooked on Phonics Learn to Read, kindergarten

Saxon Math K


Finished as much as we wanted:

Science is Simple!


I think everything was worth it, except for the science activity book. We skipped around a lot, grabbed things here and there that got our attention, then pretty much dropped the rest in favor of just exploring our backyard. I didn't see much point in most of the "experiments." It's pretty hard to get a four year old to really understand the concepts. He just wants to find caterpillars and dig for worms. And that's fine with me!

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  1. MM2B for younger MM 4B and 5A for older-enjoyed it. Will continue.
  2. LOF Fractions; good for a fun break from MM. Will continue with Decimals.
  3. SOTW3. Enjoyed it, are continuing with SOTW4.
  4. WWE3 with older. Wonderful, superb, very happy. Continuing with WWS with older, younger has begun WWE3.
  5. Henle-planned to get through at least Units 1-2, and we have. It was a big decision for me to go with Henle. I debated LL, Galore Park and others. I am very glad we chose Henle. We are going to supplement with more vocab, but in almost every way, it's the perfect fit for DS.


Did not finish:

  1. Evan Moor Daily Geography Grade 4. Boring.
  2. COre Knowledge 4th grade Science-I had high hopes for this, and spent many, many hours transcribing the online docs into a readable pdf. It was just.....boring. :tongue_smilie: Too much detail and not enough beauty, discovery and too few "Wow! Science is amazing!" moments. We switched to BFSU 2 in January and are very happy.
  3. Building Thinking Skills Vol 2. Too easy. I may have younger play with it a bit. We ended up playing lots of games to enhance Logic skills.

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Well, our school year doesn't end till the end of June, so nothing's finished yet - don't make me :willy_nilly:


But... we are on track to finish:


For older two:

Math (Lial's Algebra for one, Foerster's Algebra for the other)

Spanish (Breaking the Spanish Barrier 3)

Science (CPO Physics: A First Course)


For writing they've been doing WriteGuide, so there's really no "end", but it's been continuous.


For lit, we may not get all the way through LLfLoTR; we've kind of delved deeper with some of the units (Beowulf and King Arthur) and spent some time on the Duke Once and Future King stuff. If we don't end up doing every chapter of questions in LLfLoTR, I'm sure we'll do most and they'll finish the books. They also read/discuss lots of good lit (10 books) for their book group, plus there's been history reading - there's only so much time!


For history, we have this ongoing thing that sprawls over years with no real beginning or end point. Our goal was to get to the Enlightenment, and we're only in the Middle Ages. We'll work through the summer on history, anyway.


We're getting through MCT grammar and vocab, but slooowly. We will not finish MLens or WWtW this year. Good thing a little MCT goes a long way! Or that's my hopeful hypothesis...


For younger:

Spanish (Spanish the Easy Way)

Science (Exploration Education)

Sigh. We switched math mid-year after she finished Singapore 6A; she'll be halfway through AoPS Prealgebra. But she's only in 5th, so I'm not sweating it.

Hm. That may be it. :blushing:


She's done almost no writing - started and stopped WWS, did a bit of Killgallon but not much, took a creative writing coop class that didn't actually ask her to do much, and just signed her up for an 8-week Time4Writing class so I could check something off in the writing column.


She just finished Practice Town, but we didn't start it this year.


For "lit" - well, she'll have read everything for her book group - can I call that good??

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I realized halfway through "first grade" That DS wasn't ready for first grade. :001_huh:. So we let up a bit and had another K year kinda... we have cut out all the fluff and did math, Phonics, writing, and we read together. We also did a lot of science/nature walks. And that made life easier. I feel I am not capable of doing more than math and phonics until my child is reading. I don't know how others use an actual curriculum (outside of reading and talking) before your child is reading. We do crafts, art, music, tumbling and I don't feel like he missed out on a lot.


So yes, our school day is around an hour and half a day. That's about right for K. So replanning and back to the drawing board for next year.

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We've definitely gotten derailed this year. Then we got derailed off our derailment. I think we're on Plan E or maybe F. At any rate, I like Boscopup's perspective. We haven't finished a lot, but we have achieved success in various skills. Older ds is solidly working independently this year. His writing has improved and he has learned how to take notes. Younger ds' reading is taking off and we are now consistently doing math. :D


Ds needed time off due to a concussion, then he was sick, then we were away. At that point I decided to school through the summer. I think year round schooling will work well for us. As long as there isn't a mutiny on board. So, the idea of "finishing" doesn't quite make sense to me at this point, because we will just keep going.

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Well, our school year doesn't end till the end of June, so nothing's finished yet - don't make me :willy_nilly:


But... we are on track to finish: [/Quote]


At any rate, I like Boscopup's perspective. We haven't finished a lot, but we have achieved success in various skills...


...So, the idea of "finishing" doesn't quite make sense to me at this point, because we will just keep going.


I'm not trying to rush anyone, or imply that completion of curricula is better than using them as tools. I just wanted to have a complement to the planning thread, because often what people PLAN to do is often so different from what they ACTUALLY do.


Gleaning from what people DID can be more helpful sometimes.


Also for those of us putting our final touches on plans to send in an order, sometimes we need to rethink our plans...cause...they just are NOT realistic. And then we might not have the cash available for what we really need.


I think I do love each and every book I have, and I do at least glance at all of them at one time or another, but...I've spent more money that I would have, if I had been a little more realistic, and not so drawn to the new and shiny. And I waste time when I insist on biting off more than I can chew properly. I can be like the little brother with the stuffed mouth, drooling crumbs into his lap, while the older sister taking dainty bites looks on in revulsion. But then sometimes it's fun to stuff your mouth! :-) And package day is such a blast isn't it :-)

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We've definitely gotten derailed this year. Then we got derailed off our derailment. I think we're on Plan E or maybe F.


Oh, this is us. I've been telling my dh the last few days that this really wasn't a great school year. Thankfully, it was only first grade. We will definitely be making some changes in the home life, however, to focus more on homeschooling for the future.


What we finished from start to finish from the beginning of the year: :party:

God's Design for Life (AiG)

Devotion for the Children's Hour by Kenneth Taylor

First Language Lessons


I am happy, however, with finishing (although edited, due to starting mid-year):

Saxon Math

Story of the World I

Spelling Workout


Jumping around in curricula needs to stop here, and we need to get a little more serious about what we're doing this next year.

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We've definitely gotten derailed this year. Then we got derailed off our derailment. I think we're on Plan E or maybe F.


That sounds like my housekeeping LOL :lol: I'm on about Plan W for a new housekeeping routine. What I really need is one of those robot grabby hands, my kids or DH drop things on the floor and I can't bend down (bad back), which means, the benchtops may be sparkling, but the floor looks like a volcano overflowed. :tongue_smilie:Besides, I clean the loungeroom only to turn around and it to look like 100 puppies just tore through it. I give up. I think the only way to get it done is nag, and poke everyone with sticks. :lol:


Anyway back to thread....


I actually found the dropping of the curriculums/books we did drop, to actually be worth it, I spent time with my kids unschooling/child-led learning, and although this isn't something I would do full-time, all the time, it gave me an insight I wouldn't of gotten otherwise, into how to make a program suit them. So far, before we've even begun (our new school year begins 21st May) it seems to be going well, Atlas "wants" to read (before, she didn't want to, I think she was afraid I would stop reading to her), She LOVES science, adores Maths, Loves Egyptians (even her Diabetes Logbook had to be handmade into an Egyptian Logbook) knows about Dinosaurs, basics of how they do mummification, has naturally done (without any input, just came to me with the finished projects) half off the activities from the SOTW AB. She knows various countries on the map, wants to do mapping/geography. And all this can be contributed to the fact last years curriculum tanked. So I am actually thankful for the many things that didn't work out as it has given me more insight into all my kids than I would of gotten before that.

Edited by Ecclecticmum
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Our school year hasn't ended yet so some things aren't done but are on track...


For my oldest this was a gap year spent working on skills she missed from PS and finding her feet in math. She has been doing PR1-4. We have 7 weeks of PR4 to go.:hurray: That is a lot in 18 months, she has worked very hard. She finished up SWI-B the beginning of the year, and did WWE4.


My twins are on track, they finished IEW PAL Writing Part 3, WWE2, and have almost all of the skills down in Aesop A. DD who read late finished SL Readers Intermediate, her twin finished Readers Advanced.


My older son has been on a roll. He finished IEW PAL Reading and the Writing through Part 2 with AAS1 (which means done for the year). He did 2 levels of math in CLE and SM. He finished HWT and moved to the next book. He finished SL Regular Readers and is 1/2 way through Intermediate.

Edited by melmichigan
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We are on track to finish: SOTW3

Kindergartener: CLE Math 100 LU's 101-105 (which is all I had expected to finish)

4th grader: CLE Math 400


We dropped R&S Eng 4 for LLATL 4 in February so that won't get done. There's no way we'll get through Artistic Pursuits because we just don't make time for it. Pianimals is still sitting there looking at me. We started RS4K Chemistry and got derailed by other more interesting science topics. Once we finished SSL, I never pulled Prima Latina out of the attic. The Complete Book of Maps and Geography will carry over into next year.

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RightStart B

WWE2 (w/o workbook)

Spelling Connections 2


On track to finish between now and the end of June:


Cursive Writing with a Twist

Daily Language Review 2


Algebra Readiness Made Easy 2

SOTW 2 w/ activity guide

(most) of our Astronomy plans (WTM-style)


What we didn't finish, but I'm ok with it:


Earth Science (WTM-style) -- He just wasn't very interested, so I let him do the readings, watch lots of documentaries on Netflix, and generally do this on his own time

Writing Strands 2 -- Ummm... yeah. Not a good fit at this time. No big deal, though.


I'm pleased with our progress. Most of the extras I planned, we used. I'm fairly certain the extras I have planned for next year will be used/finished, too.

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We also cycle through the year, though summer is lighter on "content" subjects, heavier on art. I am fairly satisfied with our year: I have chosen to focus on the children's well-being (which seems to require a lot of time playing outside!) and Button's skills. I've learned a lot about how we do -- this has been first grade, it became clear that TWTM-style history and science are not for us (with the encyclopedias, and the extra nonfiction reading).



WWE1 (then on to WWE2)

AAS1 (started AAS2, Button hated it, we ended up with the Modern Speller which we do regularly).

MUS Gamma (now in Delta/Epsilon; we hit a mid-year bog and are plowing through Delta at a good pace again).

Getty-Dubay A (started B, the lines too big for Button, using a CM handwriting now, doing it regularly)


Have not been regular about:

Apologia Astronomy




Free and Treadwell reader third grade



Getting Started With Latin (we may pick it up again this summer)

Singapore 4a

Phonics Pathways, about 1/2 way through

Artistic pursuits, Meet the Masters

L'art de Dire


Began, using regularly if not perfectly:

Primary Language Lessons

AOs year 1 reading lists

outdoor time

poetry reading


Almost done with:

Reading Pathways

Edited by serendipitous journey
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Things that are on track to be finished by the end of the school year (end of May for us):

(both kids)SOTW 2- We love SOTW. We're doing year 3 next year.

Apologia Astronomy- finished, we have moved on to Swimming Creatures and will be finishing this up in the fall

SWR- I guess we didn't technically finish this (you just use it until you get through the entire spelling list), but each dc got farther than I had planned and spelling has noticeably improved for each so I'm happy.

Music Appreciation- I used the Famous Composers cd and a lot of classical music. The kids can identify various composers and love classical music. For me, that's a good music year, but I'd like to do better with actual music theory next year.


(DD) Horizons 4 Math- she really needs spiral and does well with this, but I'm going to add in some MM next year.

WWE3- This has been hard for her, but great for her writing development. I'm looking forward to WWS next year.


(Ds) Horizons 1 Math finished, he is in MM2A now and should finish that sometime before the end of the year

FLL 1- I know people love this but I just couldn't get into it. I think we will do some stuff from FLL 2, but mainly use KISS or Shurley

WWE 1- Love it! Using WWE 2 next year


Stuff we haven't been on track with:

Latin and grammar for dd :glare: I slowed down in grammar because she was getting some from her Latin and I slowed down on Latin because of life. I'm not worried about the grammar. She is a year ahead anyway. She'll push through and finish Latin this summer.

Harmony in Art- I am terrible about scheduling art. Strike that. I'm good at scheduling art, but bad at following the schedule as written :lol: I'm hoping we can do this during the summer.


So all in all, not a bad year for us, I guess. I really wish I could find an art and music program I love and an extra hour in the day to get it done :tongue_smilie:

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I wonder if I should just plan for reality? After I thought about my list, I laughed at myself. My reality is about 10 hours on task for my own self-education, and less than 10 hours on task with any of my students. Shopping and forum participation are not self-education or even time spent prepping to teach, but I know I'm going to spend more time wasted than on task.


Is anyone else having a reality moment?

This spring T4L, Kumon math, violin practice, US history, literature, drama, art, and My Little Lore of Light. T4L is pretty much complete. Little Lore of Light is finished. Art and drama have 2 more weeks. 5 more weeks and US history and scheduled literature will be finished. Kumon math and violin are ongoing. It is far from my more inspired homeschool semesters, but it is getting done. :)



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Oy, this is a funny question. I rarely finish anything, because skills flourish at a different rate, and often require a change of pace. DS has a knack for grammar, and we will finish FLL3 this year. We have basically finished MM year 4, and covered a few topics from MM5. We read SOTW ancients, and a couple other random US history books together. We don't use a curriculum for science at this time, but have covered several topics, none of them having to anything with anything at a particular time.


He's gone from (seriously) drawing letters at a painful pace, to writing a neatly spaced/legible paragraph. He reads well, helps with DD, and has become very self directed.


DD has gone through most of SM year 1, and some of WWE1, using Aesop's fables. We are mostly working on reading fluency, and will continue to do that through summer.


Most of all, I am proud of the fact that both my children are learning HOW to learn and enjoy the process to some degree!

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We are on week 32 and only have a few more weeks to go. Almost everything got done.


We finished IEW Intensive C, we are one unit away from AFF-IEW with my 5th grader. We are one spelling list away from our goal in Spelling Plus, and we are more than 75 percent away from completing our history and science paces with one child, though we may just read and notebook the last few to focus on our math skills. My oldest finished his Algebra 2 from MUS, his World History Course, and he is almost finished with his Computer Programming FLVS course.


We are nearing the finish line for the year, but I am seeing where we could have done better, and where would could have relaxed. I'm realizing that history and science at the elementary stages do not have to be something that you write about daily. It will be okay to just read through and discuss. The basics must not take a back seat to any other subject.


We have not neglected our Bible reading, but I can see areas where we could have done more in relation to the Word and memorization, but we let the schedule got in the way, or determine the order of things.


Thirteen years in this journey, but I am still learning...

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This spring T4L, Kumon math, violin practice, US history, literature, drama, art, and My Little Lore of Light. T4L is pretty much complete. Little Lore of Light is finished. Art and drama have 2 more weeks. 5 more weeks and US history and scheduled literature will be finished. Kumon math and violin are ongoing. It is far from my more inspired homeschool semesters, but it is getting done. :)




May I ask what your art was? Art is a weak spot here ... partly because Button repurposes the best of art plans, which makes it sort of hard to feel organized, though I suppose repurposing is the point -- he's taking ownership of the projects! It just usually involves on-the-fly scrounging for materials, or protection of the walls :) , and I like to have things planned out ...

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We start in September and will finish in June. We will finish everything. We always do, unless I make a conscious decision to drop something.


This is cool. Looking at your siggie, it seems like you are planning a rigorous WTM education and sticking to your plan? I know that a good chunk of our derailing is b/c I'm trying to keep our skills work at the challenging-but-doable level for Button, which isn't something I can plan ahead of time. This is, I think, important for him, but clearly is not the best strategy for all families. Any thoughts on this? Have you been happy with the encyclopedia portions of the WTM history and RSO science? those were some of my barriers.

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TT math gets started and finished here. We finished level 4 and should finish level 5 by "summer break."


We finished 3/4 of Elemental History. Then we got VP self-paced history and started it right away.


I planned our own science, basically lots of books and science kits. I make a list of what we have and a list of what we finished. I'm pleased with what we finished, so I'm calling it good.


I also planned a list of history read-alouds, and we finished that. I'm putting together my next list now.


Formal LA is always a challenge here. We finished 1/2 of BJU reading 5. We alternated between it and reading real books. We did some MCT island level and some online grammar and some writing. I think that although we didn't "finish" things, we got a good year in with growth in all areas.


I don't buy big programs anymore. I know my tendency to not follow other people's plans and switch around. I buy components, mix and match, and drop when I need to.

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Okay so...what did you FINISH this year? And was it worth it?


We used Ages of Grace this year for integrated history, literature, poetry, and faith. And it was WONDERFUL. All of those subjects actually got done, first of all. ;) But more than that, they were deeply enjoyed. My daughter has never been much of a reader, so I wasn't sure how she would handle such a reading-heavy curriculum. Well now she loves reading and thinks that she might want to be an author when she grows up. She's even started writing some novels and stories of her own, outside of her assigned writing for school. Obviously, I should have chosen a curriculum like this from the beginning!



did skills get neglected?


Yes, if you happened to see my panic-stricken thread about math and grammar, you know how terribly I neglected those this year.

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May I ask what your art was? Art is a weak spot here ... partly because Button repurposes the best of art plans, which makes it sort of hard to feel organized, though I suppose repurposing is the point -- he's taking ownership of the projects! It just usually involves on-the-fly scrounging for materials, or protection of the walls :) , and I like to have things planned out ...

LOL! Art and drama are outside classes. Each week he has 1hr and 20min of each with a snack between the two. Sometimes there is outside work, but it is usually drama (memorizing monologues and lines) that takes more time at home.


Sorry, that was no help!



ETA- This was a busy year. I had a senior and college apps and stuff to mess with. I worked 2 half days at the Kumon center. I tutored both Foundations and Essentials at CC. I had an extra student after CC and all day another day. I outsourced as much as I could, because I knew realistically that otherwise it wouldn't be done.

Edited by Mandy in TN
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...My goal is to teach my child, not the curriculum. ...Whether I finish a book won't matter. If I have taught the skills I wanted to teach for the year, that's what is important.


:iagree: with this idea. Though sometimes I find it hard to look at something I bought and didn't finish and remember the principle.


For example, I had a lot of things for reading dyslexia problems that my son is now advanced past before they were finished. I have to tell myself, "Great! That worked!" and realize that they served their purpose and now we are where we are. They do not need to be finished. The main thing used for this was the High Noon Reading Intervention program. Sometimes he was moving slowly and sometimes fast and it was hard to anticipate what he would need, and I wanted to not run out of material, but sometimes that has meant having too much. Still, was it worth it? Absolutely!


In addition to the great accomplishment of now having a child who can read--the huge thing achieved this year-- there were some other achievements also. And some things finished. I think pretty much all the completed and achieved things were worth it, yes.


Math: completed MUS gamma, expect to complete Delta by the end of the year. Read several LOF books. Did not finish our SM supplement. My son doesn't like it. I may try again, or I may just accept that and decide it was worthwhile because I learned that with just a supplement and not with a whole wrong for him program.


History: Went through the whole SOTW sequence plus rabbit trails.


Science: A lot of science was learned...no program was exactly finished. Chemistry was abandoned shortly through the year in favor of more science history and rabbit trails. RS4K has been the least used curriculum I got and had looked forward to, I am hoping to return to it next year or this summer.


Literature: had to be done as read alouds and seeing performances, and included some Dickens, Shakespeare, and some poetry. A good year for literature, mainly because it was loved.


Art doing it: a bunch of materials gotten that did not work for us, including Drawing with Children... but also many gains made in drawing. He is drawing right now as I am typing.


Art history: had a brief intro to art history this year. Had more available that we have not gotten to, but I was happy with what we did. And, hey, this year is not over yet is it?


Music: learned about some different styles of music: jazz, folk, reggae, rock, classical... used the radio and CD's for this. No curriculum per se. No playing an instrument, I was sad about this and that he apparently does not want to return to an instrument this summer as I was hoping. But, I think that was introduced and made available and that I will let it be.


Language Arts/writing: things were started and are progressing. What was started will be continued into next year. This is now the area of major struggle as reading was last year at this time.


Other areas, physical exercise, spiritual pursuits are not things I include within "school".

Edited by Pen
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I think the only thing I'll be able to claim "completed" on is Dancing Bears Fast Track. And, YES, it has been absolutely worth it!!! He is reading. :party:



I am *trying* to be realistic about planning for next year. I want to prioritize (whether we finish in a year or not...) Dancing Bears book C. I had set Apples & Pears spelling aside for months, and recently picked it back up. I want my oldest to complete the series before I move him on to the next level in writing. (That is one curric that he just wasn't totally ready for at first, and it was a good thing that I shelved it - and didn't sell it.) Apples & Pears is priority #2.



I think you hit the nail on the head about finishing well in only a few things. Multum non multa. So...choose wisely, huh!?!:001_huh::lol:



...off to re-write some goals for my dc....

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What we finished:

ABeka phonics1: worth it I think ;) though it was tough for ME to make it through! :lol:

HWOT 1- not worth it. We loved HWOT K and will use it with ds next year, as a workbook only it was not worth it.

MM 1B, 2A (working on but will not finish 2B)-- definitely worth it. I have seen a major improvement in dd's conceptual understanding of math.

ETC 3-5-- the verdict is still out. Dd liked it at first, but I am still trying to determine if there is any retention or if it is busywork. It has bee effective for vocabulary and handwriting though.

AAS 1-2 (working on but will not finish 3)-- yes, worth it! The program has been very effective for dd and easy to teach


what we will finish either this week or in 4 weeks:


WWE 1-- not sure. Dd struggles with it, and while I think we may try another year' I am not convinced the benefits outweighed the stress on this one.

FLL 1 (this week)-- yes, dd loved it and I think it is providing a solid foundation for grammar

SOTW 1-- ummm, no? No stones! :tongue_smilie: Too much breadth, not enough depth. Not that we wouldn't use it again, but not as is. I would study ancients by culture -- less jumping around, less topics-- I understand exposure, but I feel as though we are walking away with very little retention and not a love for history.

ES biology- yes. Worth it, we enjoyed it could be as light as we needed, yet had enough to feel like we were still learning.dd loved the notebooking, and the experiments (when we got to them!) really helped understanding.

BSGFAA unit 1 (this week)-- yes! Kids loved it and learned soooo much! Was their favorite part of the day.



What I have learned about me a curricula:

I do think I often become a slave to curricula and am going to work on that next year -- using a curricula to accomplish our goals while granting myself permission to deviate for the purpose of "learning." it can be hard! :tongue_smilie:

Edited by ByGrace3
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Just stumbled upon this, and have to leave in a minute, so just want to post quickly so I can find this again!


We finished:

Mathematical Reasoning

Language Smarts

Both from Critical Thinking Company. We use these for K - 3rd grades and it has worked VERY WELL for all my kids no matter what their learning style has been. Pricier than I'd pay for a "workbook" - but it's more like a whole curriculum in one book. Independent learning style. The kids rarely needed me to sit with them, they could figure it out without me hovering over them. Worth it.


Nearly Finished

Apologia Astronomy with Notebook.

Worth it. My kids LOVE science and I fall asleep on the first sentence of every science book I've read until this one. The kids RETAIN the knowledge and are EAGER to do it. This is the first thing they ask for every day. We could have done more this year, but I was working 40 hours a week until March, so this was the first thing we set aside since it is more teacher directed.


Older kids: Saxon math WITH SAXON TEACHER CDs. I wouldn't do it any other way!

3 of my kids are awesome at math, and 2 of them struggle. The CDs work for all of them. They can go back and "rewind" and "replay" the day's concept. They REVIEW past concepts every day by adding a few random problems from past chapters. The CDs have the answers for EVERY SINGLE PROBLEM in the book - explained to them - if they are struggling with an answer. Pricier than I'd normally pay, but to be used by 5 kids - definitely worth it, and actually it was so successful for us, I'd have probably paid that much every year for each child, because before this math was a HUGE time consumer in our house with explanations, backtracking, repeating concepts, etc.


Also big spontaneous purchase this year for the older kids were the APOLOGIA science Red Wagon Tutorials. My older kids were bored out of their minds with science, and having a less-than-enthusiastic teacher like me did not help. I just required it of them and we all dragged. The Red Wagon Tutorials are from a teacher who taught the Apologia science classes online and then gave the rights to re-sell his broadcasts. He is 1. Enthusiastic and 2. Organized and 3. Interesting. He adds a lot of interesting side notes and connects more things than are even in the book. The hardest part was figuring out how their schedule/dates/assignments would correlate to our school year. That took us a little while, but since then has been easy and even my student who dislikes science as much as I do has retained a LOT more than previous years.


Anyway, I kind of went off like writing a review or something! But these were the things I was very hesitant about mostly because of price, but ended up being very happy about!


Things I was disappointed in:

Mathtacular - cute and fun, but I can't put it together with a curriculum, so just watching math concepts can grow old quickly. It would be nice if it correlated to a curriculum.

Drive Thru History - interesting and fun, but again, hard to tie in with other things we are doing.

If you have the extra money to spend - those are nice extras, but they won't stand alone as any sort of curriculum (at least they didn't for us.)




More to come!

Edited by KinderSafari
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We have a few weeks left. We will finish R&S 2 grammar, SM 2a text, wbk, and IP. We skipped some practice in SM 2b text, did all of the wkbk and parts of IP. We have also done over half od CWP2. We may do more over the summer. We have a couple of chapters to finish Biology and we will finish SOTW over the summer.


We only did half of CC cycle one because I decided it was not worth dedicated time. We listen to it in the car. I also EKR it best to stop with the timeline where we will be at the end of sotw ancients. It makes more sense for us.

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