Yesterday I blogged about the beginning of our homeschool plans for next year. Today I am going into more detail starting with the books and texts we are selecting.
First off, we decided against using an out of the box curriculum a couple of years ago. We had looked at a few of them, but we were having problems finding something that we really liked enough to devote ourselves to. And basically it boiled down to a few issues. I wanted faith to be a more or less integral part of the whole, but not a contrived part of it. We also had to find things that fit with the ages and interests of our children. Homeschooling is a way of life; it is not just another option. If you decide to homeschool it ends up affecting everything, in mostly very good ways, but everything is changed or at least colored by that choice to homeschool. When you select a curriculum that becomes part of your everyday life – every day. So we end up picking and choosing what we use from several different programs including Mater Amabilis (the biggest part), Ambleside, CHC, classical homeschooling and a big sampling of the wonderful things from the Real Learning forums.
After deciding the subjects we plan to study the next step is picking the texts, programs, etc. that we wish to use.
Religion: For religion we use the Faith and Life Series from Ignatius press. Our CCD classes use these books. Next year we will use Book 1 , Book 3 and Book 5 we also have a copy of the Saint Joseph Baltimore Catechism and The Loyola Treasury of Saints and New American Bible
Math: Our math text of choice has been Singapore Math. We are considering switching Hannah to Saxon math, but if we do so it will be after the first 12 week term. For Term one we will have: Earlybird Kindergarten Math Textbook A and B , Singapore math 1B and 2A, Singapore math 2A and 2B, and Singapore math 6A and 6B
English: We are using new texts for English for Hannah and Christopher. Hannah will use: Primary Language Lessons and Christopher will have: Lingua Mater
Phonics: Our phonics instruction is based on the Writing Road to Reading
Literature and Reading: We do not use a reading text, instead we select actual books to read. I will make a separate post for the children’s reading lists. Our Shakespeare readings will come from: The Children’s Shakespeare
Writing: We use the Getty & Dubay Handwriting Series. This fall we will use Book B, Book C and Book F. Christopher has Write Source 2000 as a reference for his composition.
American History: From Sea to Shining Sea will be the text.
World History: Christopher will have The Story of Mankind, Josh will be learning from: The Story of the World
Science: The children’s science references will be Christopher: Encyclopedia of Science Hannah: Encyclopedia of Planet Earth Josh: First Encyclopedia of Our World
Latin: Christopher’s Latin test will be:Cambridge Latin Course Unit 1 Josh and Hannah will do less formal work with Prima Latina
German: Christopher will start informal German studies with Berlitz German
Piano: Alfred’s Basic Piano Library and John Thompson’s Modern Course for the Piano
Other subjects do not have a particular text or reference. For some of them I wasn’t able to find exactly what I wanted and ended up cobbling together my own “text” for others we use reading lists or unit studies which I will describe in a future post. But the above list is pretty much it for texts.