Thursday, July 23, 2020

Curriculum Choices for 5th and 3rd Grade

Choosing curriculum is one of the hardest decisions to make when it comes to homeschool.  There are so many options out there!! I feel like I am constantly researching curriculum.  I spend hours reading samples and reviews.  Some things I have chosen over the years have worked well for us and others have not.  Finding good fits for my teaching style and their learning styles can be a challenge.  I adjust as necessary and try to make the best of what I purchase.  These are my choices this year-

Part of our Bible class will focus on them having a daily quiet time.  I got them each their own personal devotion book.  They will start their school morning by reading the passage for that day.  

Also for Bible class we hope to soon be participating in an afternoon Awana club.  I am excited for them to have the opportunity to study weekly with other kids their age.  Some friends are starting an English speaking expat school around the block (Encounter Academy).  They will be offering several extra curricular activities that we will be participating in the afternoons.  One of those is Awana.  We are excited!

Another part of our Bible this year will come from this book.  Each week we will study a different country or people group.  We will learn about their culture and exposure to the gospel.  We will also spend time in prayer for them and the missionaries serving in those areas.
We have always used A Reason For Handwriting.  It works well so we are sticking with it.  This year both boys are in full cursive. 
Math U See is another curriculum choice we have used from the start.  This year Cruz is doing Epsilon.
Ben is doing Math U See Gamma.

We are changing our language this year.  The co-op is offering Learning Language Arts Through Literature for lower elementary.   Ben will be doing The Yellow Book.   This shows his workbook as well as the literature books he will be studying.

Cruz will be doing The Purple Book from Learning Language Arts Through Literature and a book study on these four literature selections.

In addition to the literature in his language class, Ben will also be doing Sonlight Reading for Grade 3.  I loved this set of books when Cruz was in 3rd grade and look forward to diving into them with Ben this year.  Sonlight reading is so good!!

Ben will also be reading these Sing Spell Read & Write level 3 books.    They are a continuation of a trip around the United States that he began in second grade.  Last year he covered the Southern and Eastern border states.  This year he will cover the rest.  This has been a favorite reading curriculum pick of mine so far.  It teaches so many fun facts about the States.  I will incorporate this into his history and geography class as well. 

Cruz will be reading literature through his language class as well as doing Reading 5 from BJU Press.  In addition to these, I have several other chapter books I have chosen for him to read this school year.  We do a lot of reading around here.

We will be doing Science through the co-op again this year.  We will be using Apologia's Exploring Creation with Human Anatomy and Physiology.  I am excited about this course this year and all of the fun experiments that go with it.

During the second semester I will be teaching Abeka's Health Safety & Manners 3 to the lower elementary co-op students.  This will include Ben.   We love this course that Abeka offers and have used it since first grade.

We are doing American History and Geography this year.  This was supposed to be a co-op class for the upper elementary, but the virus caused those plans to fall through.  I had already purchased the books, so I will be teaching it at home instead.

This will be Cruz's second year to do IEW writing.  This year he will be doing a themed book "All Things Fun and Fascinating".  I have signed him up to take this two semester class through Outschool.   His best bud from co-op will be taking it with him.

As a great compliment to IEW writing, we will continue with Fix It! Grammar this year.

Both boys will continue Keyboarding Without Tears.  

Ben will continue Explode The Code Online.

I love these "180 Days of...." books that I order from Amazon.  They are offered for many subjects.  I use them mostly for review and extra practice.  This year I ordered them for Spelling, Language, and Reading. These are great books!

In addition to language and science, the boys will also be doing geography through the co-op.  Co-op classes will be through Zoom until everything opens back up.  At Encounter Academy, in addition to Awana,  I have signed them up for some afternoon Arts Courses.   They will do four quarters of classes covering culinary arts, vocal music, arts & crafts, and theater arts.  I am excited about the different options for learning we are incorporating into school this year.  

Sadly, we will not be doing Sonlight this year.  I am still second guessing that decision.  They changed the age recommendations for their cores this year.  They bumped every level up a year.  Since I combine both boys into one core Ben technically would have been too young for the next level we would be doing.  So, we're taking a year off and plan to pick it back up next school year.  I love Sonlight!!!  It is my top favorite choice for curriculum.  I will definitely miss it this year but have a lot of other fun things to take its place.

Let the learning begin...

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