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Discussion in 'Home Schooling' started by MarleyMoon, Jul 16, 2012.

  1. MarleyMoon

    MarleyMoon Member

    Hi! I am wanting to homeschool my children starting this coming school year (woah, thats in a month!). I have been considering this option for quite some time now and my husband and I feel that it is what is best for our family. I have spoken to people and learned my laws and requirements for my I am just wondering how I can find free curriculums that fit our needs. My daughter is going into 5th grade and our son into 2nd grade. Any help would be greatly appreciated, people keep saying to search online and I have, repeatedly but have found nothing that is free. I also would like to find a program that is not religion based.
  2. r0llinstoned

    r0llinstoned Gute Nacht, süßer Prinz

    How come you want to home school them
  3. MarleyMoon

    MarleyMoon Member

    The public school system in our area is less than impressive
  4. eggsprog

    eggsprog liberalobamacommunist HipForums Supporter

    maybe paying a few bucks isn't a bad idea when it comes to educating your children. even if you find something for free, it's probably going to be shitty.
  5. MarleyMoon

    MarleyMoon Member

    Well, I am willing to pay to educate my children. However, if someone tells you that you can do the same thing for less money, which option would you choose? There are many choices for curriculums and it can be a bit confusing to decide which is best. I was hoping someone on here could give me information about ones they have used and yes, if they are free, even better!
  6. homeschoolmama

    homeschoolmama Senior Member

    Hello! Sorry I didn't see this before, I'm not on much anymore.

    I am gearing up to begin my 12th year of homeschooling. My kids are now 16 and 12 and will be starting 10th and 9th grade this coming fall. (Yep, I've got one kid lagging behind a little, and one two years ahead of her "class.) So while I can't quite say I've seen it ALL - I have seen quite a bit. I started homeschooling for the same reason it sounds like you are... inadequate local public schools. And at least for us - private schooling was just not a financially viable.

    What ages will you be teaching? I have tons of opinions and have tried several types of lessons... but at the moment I'm dealing with state graduation requirements which is most likely NOT where you're starting from! If I knew what age-groups you were interested in, I could give you specific information. In the meantime, a friend of mine just asked me this as well and here's what I sent him:


    Okay first, my SIL uses Connections Academy with my nieces and swears by it. It's pretty field-trip intensive so you NEED a second car & plenty of time to hunt up obscure places to visit, but if that's not a problem then that could be great for you. Personally I didn't go that way because I wanted something a bit less... structured? (fewer worksheets & more hands-on projects, and a bit more schedule-flexibility for real-life applications versus book-learning) Still, it's a great way to go if you're at all nervous because their support structure is immense!

    Yes, there are so many options out there for curriculum that yeah, it still makes MY head spin! I do have preferences and I can share them - but keep in mind that what I like and have chosen is specific to my kids' personalities & learning-styles so this is VERY MUCH a YMMV type situation. If I could recommend just one thing to every new homeschooling family I run into, it would be to choose a curriculum that's suited to each child's individual traits... and DON'T be afraid to switch things up if something isn't working well!

    Now for us – my son is finishing 9th grade right now. I "held him back" in 5th grade, (the year he was diagnosed with Aspergers - too many doctor visits/tests/backsliding issues to feel good about advancing to middle-school) so he'll be graduating a year later than normal. With him, I have stuck with more structured/linear-thinking type curricula because he craves order & repetition. We started out with Five in a Row and Oak Meadow and moved onto Live Education before I threw my hands in the air & switched him to ABeka where he truly started to thrive. Last year I used Tapestry of Grace - which he also thoroughly enjoyed, and for High School we are using Blessed is the Man... both this and Tapestry are extraordinarily book-intensive and student-led versus teacher-led, which means he does most of his learning on his own at this point. He's still needing quite a bit of guidance as far as daily planning, but due to his rigid nature he does quite well at simply sitting down & completing anything that's set before him.

    And my daughter - she's just turned 12, but I've bumped her up twice now so she's halfway through 8th grade at the moment in everything but math. She's a bit of a flutterbudget and thrives on a lack of rigidity so her schooling has been quite different. She too went through Five in a Row, Oak Meadow & Live Education but she LOVED it so I schooled her with these for a bit longer than her brother. She also spent an entire year with The Prairie Primer - a 3rd/4th grade curriculum based entirely on the Little House Books, and this year is working on an 8th/9th grade curriculum called Where the Brook and River Meets which is based on the Anne of Green Gables series. Once this is completed she will be starting in on Far Above Rubies - the femenine counterpart to my son's lessons, and while she will school through it a bit differently, there's room for enough imagination that I feel she'll do quite well with it.

    Both of my kids are using ABeka for math... that seems to be one of the toughest subjects to cover. I've fought through several versions and if I had it to do again I'd probably use Saxon Math with them (as nearly everyone I know actually LIKES this - parents & kids alike) but at this point I'm afraid to "rock the boat" as we've found something that seems to work with my number-deficient kids.

    I have literally years of notes, weekly schedules, saved websites, opinions... but honestly, it might be easiest if I knew what you were wondering about rather than unloading everything I've got onto you. I can tell you that far and above, for a pre-K student my all-time favorite curriculum is Five in a Row. It's inexpensive & makes excellent use of 'round-the-house goodies and the library, yet is so full & rich that it's a treat to go through with your young'un. It's the only curriculum I've ever seen that I feel I could recommend to someone regardless of personality, and I MISS the weekly book-type structure from those early years. Beyond that - gosh, it would all depend on you, your wife, your kids personalities, your budget... yeah, I'm sure you get the idea.


    Good luck! And if you have any questions, please ask! I'll try to make a point of hopping in here a bit more frequently so I'll see any responses/questions.
  7. homeschoolmama

    homeschoolmama Senior Member

    Umm, I just re-read your original post. Of the curriculum we've used... Oak Meadow, and Live Ed are not religiously-based. Five in a Row CAN BE... but it's one segment of the lessons, so you could absolutely skip it if you wanted and it wouldn't take anything from the lessons.

    ABeka is VERY religiously-based. Enough-so that I've had to "tweak" the history several times myself. And Tapestry of Grace & Blessed is the Man / Far Above Rubies are definitely religiously-charged as well.

    For nonreligious curriculum I'd recommend Waldorf-based education from my own experience. Oak Meadow is awesome and can be found on Ebay for reasonable prices. Live Education is even nicer - but really hard to find used and REALLY pricey if purchased new. I would also recommend looking into FIAR just because you CAN skip the weekly Bible lessons... and truly, it's an amazing curriculum.

    Another resource you might appreciate is my favorite go-to link for specific unit-studies. It's here: This site has THOUSANDS of units on absolutely anything & everything you could imagine! If you sign up for their newsletter, they'll send you weekly sales & FREEBIES! I managed to pick up a year of science lessons (all nature-based) for my daughter for $12 and she LOVES it! It's plenty involved enough for her high-energy learning style, yet creative enough to keep her from becoming bored. If you had the time, you could probably create several YEARS of full grade-appropriate lesson plans for your kids just from these unit studies... and I'd guess you could do so for less than $100 per child per year!
  8. dobiemama

    dobiemama Guest

    I'm new to the forum and I've only homeschooled for 1 year. I am looking to completing my middle daughters school through homeschooling. I will say that to start off we enjoyed using Time4learning. It is juvenile in parts, but would be great for younger students, and can be done very independently. She worked her way through 5th grade and completed the lessons up to 8th grade without overworking herself in that year and 2 months the next year. When she went back to public school for the next year she was more than prepared and already knew the material in all her advanced classes. Since we moved and are going back to homeschooling we will be looking into different options so the information above is very valuable to me. We also looked into coops in our local area since we are new to the area and she is afraid of not finding friends outside the public school system. You will probably find links where you found the information on becoming a home school in your state for local coops. I'm going to my first meeting next week and excited to find out some of the curriculum that others are using.
  9. yvonnemommy

    yvonnemommy Member

    Hi MarleyMoon, searching curriculums on forums is a smart way:sunny:
    There are many programs for homeschoolers. Some of my friends' kids are using T$L, Kumon, I can read, etc. I currently use beestar for DD. It's for elementary kids and combines all the syllabus from all over...

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