Sunday, June 15, 2008

Next year's curriculum

For my 11 year old:

  • History/Literature/theology: Omnibus II. I combine these because they are so interrelated in the curriculum. He'll read Beowulf, The Rule of St. Benedict, Eusebius- The Church History, Confessions, Ecclesiastical History of England, Song of Roland, On Incarnation of Our Lord, Bondage of the Will, Macbeth, Canterbury Tales, The Divine Comedy-Hell, History of the Kings of England, and Sir Gawain and the Green Knight. These titles are the primary reading. Omnibus has the student do a text analysis, cultural analysis (theirs and ours), and a Biblical analysis. It also contains a variety of writing assignments. I like the fact that the student really has to think. He doesn't just get to parrot out what he's read. He's forced to make conclusions and comparisons. This was hard for him at first, but by the second semester of this past school year he had adapted quite well. Omnibus also has Secondary books. I just let him read these for pleasure, no examinations by mom. He's a willing reader so this has never backfired on me. Most of them he's already read anyway. This years title for pleasure reading are Robin Hood, The Hobbit, The Nine Tailors, A Midsummer Night's Dream, Dragon and the Raven, Fellowship of the Ring, King Richard III, Henry the V, The Two Towers, The Return of the King, and Winning His Spurs.
  • Mathematics: Geometry by Harold Jacobs. I've already spoken to almost all of you about this curriculum, but let me repeat one thing. In Geometry proofs are essential. Yes, I know you can learn about circles, angles, and triangles without them. But, proofs do much in helping students become logical thinkers. I don't think your doing irreparable harm by using a curriculum that doesn't contain proofs, but in the long run I think the student benefits from them.
  • Grammar: Rod and Staff Grade 7
  • Vocabulary: Jensen's Vocabulary. It teaches the student how to use Latin and Greek suffixes and roots to discover what words mean.
  • Spelling: Spelling Power (all of you are already familiar with this)
  • Writing: Institute for Excellence in Writing DVD seminar's and workbooks
  • Science: Apologia's Physical Science. He wants to get to Biology so I'm going to let him start this over the summer. Hopefully he'll get to Biology by second semester.
  • Foreign Languages: Formally we do ABeka's Spanish 1 and 2. I know it's a high school course, but we take our time and spread it out over several years. We're also learning Mandarin together by CD Rom. I've tried squeezing in Latin, but am just plain out of time. So, this year I'm going to bite the bullet and get him the DVD's. So, someone else will teach him Latin.

For the 8 Year Old:

  • History: We're doing Middle Ages, Renaissance, and Reformation this year. I combine Veritas Press, which tends to focus on events, with Greenleaf Press, which tends to focus on people. Together I think they're pretty complete. I forgot to mention Geography with my older child. I wrote my own curriculum for that. The two oldest do it together, but the older one is accountable for more information.
  • Mathematics: ABeka 3 and part of 4
  • Grammar: Rod and Staff Level 3
  • Vocabulary: Vocabulary from Classical Roots Book A
  • Spelling: Spelling Power
  • Writing: Institute for Excellence in Writing DVD Seminar's and workbooks
  • Science: Apologia's Exploring Creation with Botany
  • Foreign Language: Spanish Abeka book I
  • Cursive: I have a CD Rom called Start Write. I type out whatever I want her to write and it prints out the dots for me so she can make correct formation.
  • Literature: McGuffy Readers Plus Adam of the Road, Beorn the Proud, The Bible Smuggler, The Door in the Wall, Ink on His Fingers, River of Grace, King Arthur, Macbeth (together with Dillon), Robin Hood, and Homer Price.

The Four Year Old:

  • Reading: At Last A Reading Method for Every Child combined with McGuffy Readers. This has worked for all my children, each of which has completely different learning abilities. My first two, who are complete opposites academically, were both at a third grade reading level in Kindergarten. I attribute that to this phonics program.
  • Math One: By Saxon She's already a third of the way through this and loves it! The all have, even my math hater.

For the Baby:

  • Lot's of crackers, blocks, board books, and Baby Mozart videos. I just try to keep him and alive and feeling loved during school hours. That's not as easy as it sounds. ; )

I hope this helps.


Jennifer said...

This makes me feel like an under-achiever. :( Thanks for sharing, though. It's helpful to see what others are using and why.

Annmarie said...


You are the LAST person I would think of as an underacheiver. You are an extremely diligent mother.