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Make me feel better - what $$$ have you spent on curriculum that didn't work out?


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I know I'm not the only one who has several $$$ curriculums sitting on the shelf, gathering dust. You know, the ones you thought were going to be so great, and probably are so great for someone else's children. But not so great for your own.

 

Or maybe you do what I do, you go with a curriculum that's supposed to be good even though a little voice inside your head is telling you it isn't going to work with your child. That's my specialty, actually!

 

So, here are this past years expensive failures. All are good programs, all are failures with either my DS or me, all will be coming to the Sale/Swap board soon.

 

Oak Meadow history and science

Write Shop

IEW (yeah, I know I just said I was going to stick with it this time, but I just hate it)

CHOW (but love SOTW)

 

Some other less expensive stuff too.

Michelle T

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I bought four packs (100 sheets each) of handwriting paper that is ADORABLE, but far too widely ruled for my K son. Heck, I can barely write on the stuff. But it's sooooooo cute ;) Altogether, it was about $20, not a fortune, but I certainly could have spent the money elsewhere.... Ah well. Perhaps we can write on the mid-line and bottom line? Or save it for our next little one? Or:001_unsure:

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A couple of years ago, I bought three complete levels of Math-U-See, during a particularly difficult mathy period in our lives. A dear friend had raved about MUS for years, and I finally thought it would be the answer to life, the universe and everything.

 

We used it for almost a month, totally hated it, and ditched it completely.

 

I think that was probably my most expensive blunder. I've also bought a couple of Sonlight cores that we didn't care for, though the kids did end up reading many of the books on their own, so it wasn't a complete wash.

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The Deluxe My Fathers World Exploring Cultures and Countries. Deluxe mind you!!! My daughter looked over the books and said, Are you serious??? I looked over the TM and felt the same way. Sadly we did not get to go over everything until about a month after I bought it so too late for returns had to sell and lose a bit $$$. Bigger chunk spent on Winterpromise American Story but we LOVE IT for my son.

 

Oh, and All About Spelling. My son hated it and I thought it was stupid. I know some rave on it but I just thought it was an absolute waste of space. It was returned.

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RightStart Math games with all the bells and whistles.

Living Learning Books- Chemistry (I might still use it very loosely but I could have put it together.)

 

Fortunately I can decide from samples and I only buy one level at a time so I don't have too many oops purchases. I do have a few of smaller ticket items, workbooks and such though.

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so it isn't a total waste.A couple of complete failures-BJUP 5th grade math...hate the hardcover textbook and so did dd.I won't use it again.BJUP music.Just wasn't for us.Serl's Primary Language Lessons,too old fashioned for us to use so I gave it away.LLATL,it was only a waste of money because I tossed it when it didn't work for oldest dd.It would have worked for my youngest but I wasn't going to spend the money on it again.Most of what I have I can figure out how to use from one child to the other in one form or another.Except Oak Meadow;it works quite well for my youngest but the early grades were not a good fit for my oldest dd.

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Rightstart Math Level A & B with all the manipulatives.

 

That's probably been my most costly mistake. I've been fortunate enough to purchase most of my other curriculum used so if it's not working I haven't spent a fortune on it. Some random workbooks and things haven't worked, but since they don't take up much space I'm holding onto them for the younger children.

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Oh my, if I listed everything I ever purchased for hs'ing that we didn't use, or that didn't work I might, no make that would, get really, really depressed. Plus, I don't think I could remember it all..... And that isn't including all the stuff on my shelves that my older didn't use but I'm hoping that my younger will use. Even looking at stuff ahead of time has not prevented me from buying stuff that we didn't use, or didn't work. I do turn around and sell the stuff but still, there's money lost, and my time.....

 

At least as time has gone on, or as the years have past I'm buying less and less and so we are using most everything I buy.

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I bought a ton of Singapore math stuff because I was so enthusiastic about it when we first started. I bought for my 5yo and my 8yo and all the years in between. Then I couldn't teach it. I thought I'd catch on but I never did. I still have it and need to head over to the s/s board.

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Rightstart Math Level A & B with all the manipulatives.

 

That's probably been my most costly mistake. I've been fortunate enough to purchase most of my other curriculum used ...

 

Me, too. I bought it used, but it was still a pretty penny. We'll use the manipulatives (mostly!) but the curriculum itself just wasn't a good fit for us.

 

I also have all the SWR materials, including extras...dropped that for the time being to pick up AAS (which has been much better for us).

 

And how many of us have managed NOT to mention said costly blunders to dh?? (ME!)

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I just spent $180 on Konos in June. I ordinarily love, but when I looked at it in August, I realized it was going to exasperate my children. Way too hard. It is the high school set, I have a 6th & 8th grader. We used it last year, but there is a marked difference for the second year.

 

Any suggestions on how I can recoup?

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I just spent $180 on Konos in June. I ordinarily love, but when I looked at it in August, I realized it was going to exasperate my children. Way too hard. It is the high school set, I have a 6th & 8th grader. We used it last year, but there is a marked difference for the second year.

 

Any suggestions on how I can recoup?

 

I have bought and sold all three of the volumes twice. Luckily I had bought them used, but I still lost money.

 

Konos sure looks good, but never worked here.

Michelle t

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Oh, so many things....

 

Singapore math, various levels or Making Math Meaningful, several Biology programs including Singapore and BJU 2nd edition and 1st edition Apologia Biology, SL guides (Cores 2 and 3), CW Poetry - beginners, and more and more....MCP student books (untouched), Robinson Curriculum vocab. workbooks, Singapore science 5, 2 sets of History Odyssey Ancients level 2, 2 Spievogel Western Civilization 5th edition comprehensive, Omnibus I student book, etc., etc. :confused:

 

(And I have double because I often seem to have 2 students in the same grade/class.)

 

Anyone need some of the above? ;)

 

It's the things I buy and then sell and then buy again that really make me crazy. :glare:

 

Michele

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Prima Latina (with DVD). (Recently schlepped to a Used Curr. sale.)

 

Still on hand and won't use:

 

Christian Studies I (including the Golden Bible. I didn't like it when I bought it. I still don't.)

 

Red Herrings from Critical Thinking Press. My husband and I can't figure them out!

 

And there's other stuff I haven't quite given up on, just yet.

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I've purchased plenty of small things that ended up not working well, but my biggest purchase was a Sonlight core that I used very little of. We just didn't like the particular book selections, I didn't like the schedule, etc. We're still using the Sonlight timeline book for History Odyssey, though!

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Nothing major yet. I'm sure that there are a few things here or there, but they weren't expensive so they don't bother me too much.

 

However, I'm seriously considering dropping Winterpromise's Hideaways in History. I love the idea of the hideaways, but none of us are enjoying SOTW at all. :001_unsure: I have purchased the first two volumes of SOTW, the first two accompanying workbooks, the CD for the first book, the TM for HIH, additional readers, and a bunch of accompanying coloring books and activity books for the periods of history. But I'm about ready to chuck it all. We're just not having any fun with it.

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The most recent was just yesterday. I found a great World Famous Paintings book with these beautiful full-page prints on each two-page spread and was so excited about it that I was willing to pay $25 for it (at a USED bookstore). I got home and looked it up on Amazon and FOUND IT FOR .05 cents. Yes. A nickle. :glare: With only $3.99 shipping (it's a very large, very heavy book). I've been a little sick about it all morning. Wahhh. Hoping that makes you feel better. :001_smile:

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Artistic Pursuits a total bust = no real art/technique instruction which is why I got it.

 

Analytical Grammar = great program; just too workbook-y for us.

 

Put That in Writing 1 = too formal in tone of instruction; boring/repetitive examples of "good writing"; don't need all boring/repetitive grammar exercises; uninspiring writing assignments. BUT -- we're GREATLY adapting and *making* parts of it work.

 

A World of Adventure = fine program; I just "tweak" too much and so it was pointless to have a complete program.

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oh -- and my biggest $$ loss: Rosetta Stone Spanish. Bought it for $180, could never work it into our schedule, and when I thought we'd finally get to it several years later -- it wouldn't work on our updated computer operating systems -- and an upgraded version would have been *another* $50... Anyone have an OLD (pre OS-10) Mac computer system and want a free Spanish program??!!

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I'd say 90% of the things I've bought that didn't work out were because of my dyslexic dd - several of those things I *did* use with other children, but I would not have spent the money on those expensive programs for the "typical" children in my family, I only used them because I had them already, YKWIM? Let's see, for math we've been through MCP, Singapore, Professor B, Math U See, and Right Start (which worked the best) and now TT (which is working OK). Phonics/Reading we had 100 EZ lessons, MCP Plaids, OPG, Phonics Pathways, WRTR.... Spelling was Seton Spelling, Sequential Spelling, Calvert Spelling , whatever Catholic Heritage Curricula calls their spelling, now AAS (which is working the best).

 

I probably *would* have spent the money on RS - I'm glad we used/are using it. But I would never spend a ton on a spelling program unless the kid needed it.

 

Then there are the things which didn't get used just because they were a subject we kept putting off, like science (Considering God's Creation and God's Design for Life set) or Latin (Prima Latina DVDs, which I keep promising myself we WILL use someday, LOL)

 

At least I'm the local expert among my friends on many different curriculum choices because I've looked at so many things! ;)

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Well, I bought a lot of little workbooky things when dc were pre-K -- I REALLY overestimated how fast they would go through these things, so I had a lot left over. I also bought a year or so ahead on some programs we liked (ETC) and then we switched. So, I thought I was all over this nonsense. I even placed a RR that was under $150!!

 

Then, I discovered that I had a giant package, unopened and ordered long ago, of Bible Felts ($$$). I hadn't opened them because my house was so messy and my children so much the type who threw things around that I thought all the little felt pieces would vanish.

 

So, fast forward to last Sunday. I open the box and -- AFTER I start cutting out the felts, I think, "eBay" -- so I keep cutting. I keep cutting and cutting, and there are literally hundreds of pieces, not arranged in any logical order. The guidebook that goes with is nightmarish. I could go on, but I won't. This is still an open wound (how stupid could I have been?), and I needed to vent.

 

I really hope this makes you feel better -- at least that would be something good from this!

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A forgetable science program, a Critical Thinking book which was the same excercise over and over, Mystery of History vol1 (yeah, I said it:rolleyes:) that I never touched, etc.

To top it all off I panicked today and called Rainbow Resources 2 min. before they closed and ordered CHOW- which an earlier poster just said they ordered and didn't like- and a science book that I just found listed on my library booklist with a notation I wrote saying "DO NOT BUY THIS BOOK!" :blink: :banghead: :cursing:

 

I was literally close to tears :crying:before I read this thread.

 

Oh yeah, and I ordered a human body book and realized I already bought a much better one at the homeschool convention in June.

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Tapestry of Grace TWICE!!

 

The Weaver Curr...ALL 4 VOLUMES!! plus all the add ons

 

All of Saxons Math books...even though we used them...they were torture!

 

Learning Adventures, My Fathers World, 5 or 10 writing programs,

 

2 different Sonlight Cores plus extras...but we did read all of the books, so not a total wash...

 

LLATL, Lots of A Beka books ( though we did enjoy some of them and used some of them very successfully...go figure...)

 

God & The History of Art...though I really plan to use it...someday...ummmmm...soon...ummmm...maybe

 

Beautiful feets Composer books and CDs...welll...the year I do the Art program....

 

LOL

 

Somehow my IDEA of a perfect homeschool and what REALLY works around here are not the same. i have nice old fashioned warm lovey learning experiences planned and my kiddoes are more text booky...just the facts Ma'am types. I always WANT to spend more time playing school and being a great teacher and they would rather me be a barefoot Mom with my Kool-aid mustache...reading great books to them on the couch rather than following someone elses best laid out plans.

 

Gotta run!

 

I am now really guilty about all the money I've spent to find out I can do a phenomenal job with some good text books and a very worn library card.

 

~~Faithe

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Not to say I'm glad that all of you have wasted money too, but I'm just glad to know I'm not alone..... sigh.

 

Now if only I could learn to pay attention to that little voice inside telling me "No, don't buy it... it's not going to work with DS, you know you won't like it."

 

Michelle T

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Somehow my IDEA of a perfect homeschool and what REALLY works around here are not the same. i have nice old fashioned warm lovey learning experiences planned and my kiddoes are more text booky...just the facts Ma'am types. I always WANT to spend more time playing school and being a great teacher and they would rather me be a barefoot Mom with my Kool-aid mustache...reading great books to them on the couch rather than following someone elses best laid out plans.

 

I am now really guilty about all the money I've spent to find out I can do a phenomenal job with some good text books and a very worn library card.

 

~~Faithe

 

This is our family exactly! What my *idea* of a perfect homeschool and what *is* perfect for our homeschool are very different indeed. If I just sit and read them great stories they eat it up and beg for more. If I start to read something to them because the plans say so, I've got mutiny on my hands. Now that I've accepted that textbooks aren't evil and are making them work for our family life is going much, much better!!

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SWR. I know that others love it, so I'm not bad-mouthing it at all. I think it's a great program! But it did NOT work for my dd. Of course, I didn't know this until I spent $100 on the curriculum, another $40 or so having the cards laminated, and get this, about $130 if I remember right on a seminar to learn how to use it, plus the expense of travel, hotel, food, etc. to attend this seminar in another state!!!! So, all together, I'm guessing about $500 for a curriculum that we only used for, I think, three months before we were both ready to pull out our hair.

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FLL3. 1-2 was great for us but 3 was a complete bust. It came on me in a flash of light one day when I realised DS had NO clue what he was diagramming.

 

A massive stack of Critical Thinking Press books and those babies are expensive. They sit hopefully in my bookcase incase I drag them out one day.

 

R.E.A.L science Earth and Space. I just really think it isn't suitable for 3rd grade whatever the publisher might say. Waaaaay too simplistic.

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Then, I discovered that I had a giant package, unopened and ordered long ago, of Bible Felts ($$$). I hadn't opened them because my house was so messy and my children so much the type who threw things around that I thought all the little felt pieces would vanish.

 

Oh, I can relate and know the feeling of little things everywhere -- messy here too :grouphug:

 

As far as big bucks, I don't feel I have wasted too much. I just started too, but I can say I research a lot beforehand, so hopefully I will avoid seriously costly mistakes.

 

The only items we don't like (boring!) are the Jesus and I Catholic books but then again, we've only done one lesson and the books were cheap, cheap, cheap. Ds doesn't enjoy (read -- intensely dislikes) our Bible in 365 Stories even though he loves read-alouds normally. This is the second Bible we're trying. Dh thinks he just doesn't like the Bible :tongue_smilie: I think I should stick to this one until he's old enough for our old, lavishly illustrated Children's Bible (writing above his head right now).

 

I think I may use the Jesus and I in my own way instead of the way the TM suggests. Can't admit to myself I may have made a wrong purchase! :lol:

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Well...we recently moved my very ill grandmother to a senior living facility very close to our home so we can help her get medical attention. This has been a HUGE undertaking and I don't think I quite prepared myself for all it would entail. We already had EVERYTHING for both dc, which I normally plan out every week, tweak as things come up and schedule according to what we have planned. It has finally gotten to be too much, so we started over this week using Keystone for my highschooler and Calvert for my 6th grader. I have literally listed everything on the sale and swap board. Yesterday was our first day and it went really well. I love how everything is planned and my son was rudely awakened yesterday at just how "relaxed" we've been. I told him it was time to ramp up...he just gave me the "eye".

 

Things that are being sent out the door: (not because we didn't like them...well, some of them were duds...)

 

All TT stuff

LLATL

SOTW

Speilvogel

Apologia

NOEO

Writing Strands

individual lit guides

SWO

LL

 

shall I go on...most things we have enjoyed in the past, but our lives have taken a hairpin turn and I just don't have time to plan AT ALL. My grandmother is another full time job on top of homeschooling and my kids' activities and being a good wife. It was truly lovely to receive our boxes, go over the manuals over the weekend and begin without doing research and planning and doubting myself. We will probably go this route from now on. My kids and I all like textbooks and organization, so this works for us. I think my planning everything left me feeling scattered and unsure all the time. I was contantly researching and spending money on the next "best product"...for the past 3 1/2 years!!! I just like being done with it.

 

All that said, I don't really have a need for any chat boards anymore. I've learned a ton here, but I don't have the need to learn about the newest, best product or method anymore. I thought I'd have one last post and this one seemed appropriate! I may peek in occasionally...and of course I have stuff on the sale board, so I HAVE to look there!!!

 

Happy homeschooling!!!

 

Robin in DFW

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So far curriculum that has not worked out for us this year is...

 

MFW K and MFW 1....when I realized our library had almost none of the books on the book list or similar ones I knew it wasn't going to work. I realize I could have just purchased the books...and now seeing how much I have spend on other curriculums that wouldn't have been so bad!

 

RightStart A & B also didn't work out for us and I need to sell it. I really wanted to love this curriculum and use it. But after trying for a month I gave up. While I know others love RightStart it just wasn't a right fit for our family. We are now doing MUS and Horizons which I love and my children LOVE. Math is their favorite subject!

 

I also purchased Apologia Astronomy which I will not be using this year because it is just way too much reading for my dc this year. Most of my dc are visual learners and Apologia has way too many word. But I am looking forward to possibly using it in the future.

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