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My wife and I recently withdrew our son(11 year old 5th grader) from public school to home school. We have put a lot of time into finding the right curriculum but we are just lost in history. My wife started with The Good and the Beautiful for english, history, and science. She really enjoys the English however the reading assignments are just not great for our son, who is a well advanced reader but lacks on basic grammar skills. History, we are not happy with at all. We enjoy the religious centered focus of it, however, it just does not seem to flow real well. Science we are also lost in. It seems very basic and even upgraded to Apologia's Astronomy course but still find it geared more for children not quite to his level. We think we have pieced everything together well enough to get us through his 5th grade year but we are wanting to get a jump start on 6th grade as soon as possible and were looking for suggestions. 

Our son is an avid reader. His last full year in school, his school set a goal for 48 points in Accelerated Reader programs. He had more than double any other classmate at almost 300 points by the year's end. I would ideally like to find a program to really push his reading. Not sure it exists but his writing skills are almost non-existent so I would also like whatever we choose to push and help him into writing. 

On the history side of things, we aren't sure what we are looking for but I would imagine would be more of a traditional textbook style history class. I find that the way The Good and The Beautiful breaks down into little projects without covering much material is counterproductive to his learning style and becomes more of a distraction and less a learning opportunity for him. 

Any help and guidance would be greatly appreciated. 

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Welcome. 🙂 I'd suggest browsing around and looking for the planning threads for next year.  Here is the 6th grade one.  It might be handy to see what others are using and see if anything catches your eye.

I will say that in middle school my son really enjoyed the Creek Edge Press task cards.  For history, each card covered a week's worth of learning and he could use any materials he wanted to complete the tasks.  It created a personalized education while still following a chronological world history plan.

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Please don't push his reading. He's an avid reader. He'll push his own reading, and no curriculum is needed for that. If you artificially try to push it, there's a major concern that he'll lose his taste for reading.

For science, maybe the Berean Builders?

Writing. Perhaps the CAP Writing and Rhetoric, or look at Treasured Conversations for a jumpstart.

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Welcome!

When I started out parents from this forum and a site called cathy duffy reviews helped me.

Cathy duffy reviews most if not all of the curricula out there.

As to your specific questions, I'm not much help. Seems like you want a literature based history? I think Beautiful Feet is a literature based history. There are others.... I cant think of any others right now. I use story of the world. It comes with an activity book, but you don't have to do the activities. In the activity book it also lists narration, comprehension questions, and a list of corresponding books to go along with each chapter. I find the maps for each chapter really helpful for the kids to fill out.

I'm not sure what you want in science. The story of science by joy hakim perhaps? That does look like a textbook to me.

As for reading, I imagine the next step is literature guides. MOSPOS has one. Again, I would take a look at cathy duffy reviews. Then if you have specific questions about a program, then please ask us.

Hth

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I personally would use the following for your 5th grader😁.

Rod and Staff English-it is a strong grammar program that incorporates writing throughout the program.  I would take 2 days per writing focuse day😉.

Christian Light Reading does vocabulary, literary terms, figuative language, and comprehension skills...I would just let him read daily for an hour or two in addition to this skill focused work.

History- I love the simplicity of Rod and Staff and it incorporates many social studies strands...and is inexpensive.  Each year is a major focus of a diffedent area.  I would do level 4 first semester and 5 the second😁 OR Notgrass history of your choosing.  My choice is Rod and Staff, but we just LOVE it here...especially the mapping in every lesson from the back of the book with simple tracing paper...so fun 😁.

 

I hope you enjoy your first year.

Brenda

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I agree, the Cathy Duffy reviews are very useful. Also, she has a book I strongly recommend, 102 Top Picks for Homeschool Curriculum. My library has it. The first several chapters guide the reader determine their own philosophy of education, learning styles, and which type of curriculum matches those goals. (Literature based, traditional textbook, classical, and others) I have found it to be extremely helpful. Then you will have some direction in the vast ocean of curriculum options. 

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If you like the good and beautiful English stick with that. I would also stick with the reading and then add an additional 1 hour or so for reading he chooses. For science You could look into Mr. Q or real science odyssey. For history I've looked into truth quest it is done by time period and really as deep as you want to make it! 

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I second the sonlight suggestion for history and literature. It is *great* for an avid reader.  It’s not a  textbook, but almost always uses a spine that connects thing and the books are an incredible way to learn history and makes it so memorable. Love it!

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If he's a great reader and doesn't enjoy activities and projects and such, maybe K12's Human Odyssey textbook series along with a good literature list from each time period to read alongside would be good for 6th-8th grade history and literature. My kids enjoy reading these textbooks and I found that bringing my kids home from ps they were very lacking in world history knowledge.

For science we were not a good fit for Apologia either. We jump around a lot for science but have been mostly happy with Mr Q and God's Design series and Beran Builders series.

For writing if he is not a natural writer I would look into IEW. It's definitely not the right program for everyone, but it did give me confidence as a teacher to be able to figure out where they are and where they should be headed, which was invaluable. I also love Analytical Grammar for middle school grammar.

Good luck!

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