Tag Archives: curriculum

Curriculums for Independent Learning

Curriculums for Independent Learning

 

A few weeks ago we discussed how to create independent learners, and why you would want your child to be able to learn independently. Once you have encouraged your child to be an independent learner, it is important to find a curriculum that will nurture his desire to learn independently.

Here are six great curriculums for independent learning:

Teaching Textbooks

Teaching Textbooks: Teaching textbooks is a computer based math program. The program is written to the student, so parent participation is minimal. It explains the math problems completely and clearly and is one of Cathy Duffy’s top picks!

 Alpha Omega LifePacs

This program offers 10 workbooks per subject that are to be completed throughout the year. Each work book covers a certain subject. For example, in Science, one workbook may cover weather, while another covers plants. The workbooks are designed to be done independently and the program is very self paced.

 Essentials in Writing

This program contains DVD’s that teach writing skills for 1st-12th graders. Also includes worksheets to go along with the lessons. One of the top picks from homeschool moms on this post.

 Christian Light Education

Used and published by Mennonites, this math curriculum is solid and affordable. It comes with ten light units per grade and two teachers’ books. CLE uses the spiral approach and requires little to no prep work from the teacher.  .

 VERITAS Press

This curriculum is a self-paced history course. With 5 courses to choose from, each course has 160 class periods covering 32 historical events.  It offers interactive teaching, clever games, engaging video footage, and a talking historical character. VERITAS Press is sure to motivate your child throughout the entire school year

Apologia

This curriculum is a top pick for many homeschoolers. It offers studies on Zoology, Anatomy, General Science, Astronomy and more. One of the best things about it is the note booking journals that add a hands on concept to the textbook approach.

Independent learning work best with students who are self directed learners and who are good at time management. Independent learning works best with older children and may not be appropriate for young students. As with any homeschooling method, use what works best for your family. If this is independent learning then these curriculums for independent learners may work great!

Misty Bailey is a work at home homeschool mom.  She loves helping new homeschoolers and has a Homeschool 101 eBook for those getting started. She shares her struggles with time management, becoming unglued and finding joy in the everyday moments on her blog Joy in the Journey.

 

Phonics and Reading Programs for Early Learners

Have a child ready to learn to read? Don't miss this post where we discuss some of the top phonics and reading programs for early learners.

Last week we discussed some tips on how parents can teach their children to read. Today we are going to discuss some of the top phonics and reading programs for early learners.

Hooked on Phonics

I have used Hooked on Phonics to teach five children to read. I absolutely LOVE this program, and cannot say enough good things about it. Hooked on Phonics teaches children to read using the phonics program. Children start with short vowel words (-at, -an, -ap) and then move on to short i, short u, and then long vowel sounds. Every 3-4 lessons the child gets a review lesson where they also learn sight words like where, like, who, there, etc. At the end of this lesson they also get a REAL book to read. My kids were always so excited to get these books. They packed them around and read them to everyone that would listen. Hooked on Phonics is a fantastic program for teaching children to read!

Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons

This is another popular phonics based reading program. It is probably best used with a child who had not had any reading instruction due to the fact that it uses an unusual formation of letters to represent sounds. Teach Your Child uses 44 different letter formations to teach children how to read. Using the letter formations eliminates problems such as the different sounds of certain letters when used in conjunction with other letters (example tan and than).

We tried this program once, and it was not a good fit for us. However the product gets great reviews from those who have used it successfully and many say that it is easier to use than other reading programs.

All About Reading

All About Reading is an intense phonics program for children in preK through 4th grade. Using the Orton-Gillingam methodology, AAR boasts the ability to teach 97% of English words phonetically leaving only 3% to be learned as sight words.

AAR is an interactive multi sensory program that is mostly open and go. The lessons are scripted but can be adapted with hands on activities, a child’s favorite book, and adjusting the pace of the lessons. AAR receives great reviews and is one of Cathy Duffy’s 102 Top picks.

Teaching a child to read is one of the best parts of homeschooling. When the time comes for this child I encourage you to take a look at one of these three reading programs. Also, ask around and see what worked for others you know, ask to see the programs in person. With a little help you can find the perfect phonics and reading program for your new reader!

Author Bio: Misty Bailey and her husband have been married for over a decade and have three beautiful children. She shares her struggles with time management, becoming unglued, homeschooling and finding joy in the everyday moments on her blog Joy in the Journey.

Top 5 Secular Homeschool Curriculums

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There are many reasons people homeschool.  They may want to keep their children home due to health, safety, or personal concerns. Some homeschool because they know it is the best option for their child, some homeschool due to their job requiring travel. Whatever the reason one may homeschool they are often bombarded with so many curriculum choices, they may not know which ones to look at. Often times these curriculums are religious based, which don’t always fit the needs of all homeschoolers. I have homeschooled for a while now, and have tried multiple curriculums. I have shared three of my favorite curriculums before, but want to focus on some of the most popular secular homeschool curriculums.

These picks are ones I have not used, but I researched reviews, and also chose ones that I have personally heard good things about.  These tend to rate very high in reviews and some are also included on Cathy Duffy’s Top Homeschool Picks.

  1. Teaching Textbooks: Teaching textbooks is a computer based math program. The program is written to the student, so parent participation is minimal. It explains the math problems completely and clearly and is one of Cathy Duffy’s top picks!
  2. Time for Learning: Time for learning is a computer program that includes all subjects, but also has a monthly fee. Many secular homeschoolers use this program, and like it. I also know homeschoolers who use it as supplement to their regular curriculum. It is interactive and fun and does all the grading and tracking for you.
  3. K12: K12 can be used two ways. If your state offers it, it can be used free as an online public school option. If it doesn’t, or if one wants to, individual courses can be purchased. K12 includes certified teachers, grading, and multiple programs for your student. K12 gets a lot of mixed reviews, and Cathy Duffy rated it low. The reason being if one uses it as the public school option they are not traditionally homeschooling. Those who have used it for individual courses seem to be well pleased.
  4. Moving Beyond the Page: This is a secular literature based unit study. The program is geared towards ages, not grades and includes all subjects. Right now the program is for grades K-8. It is a very hands on program and requires some teacher preparation. I don’t know anyone personally who uses this, but it seemed to get good reviews.
  5. Saxon Math : Saxon Math is one that most of us probably used in school. The intermediate grade level is one of Cathy Duffy’s top picks. Saxon is a thorough program with years of happy customers on its side.

These are just a few of the many secular curriculum options out there. For more reviews on curriculum check out Homeschool Reviews, or this site that lists secular based curriculums by subject.

Misty Bailey is a wife to Roger and a homeschool mom to three beautiful blessings. She resides with her family in Southern Ohio. She loves helping new homeschoolers and has a Homeschool 101 eBook for those getting started. She shares her struggles with time management, becoming unglued and finding joy in the everyday moments on her blog Joy in the Journey