It is that time of the year again! For homeschooling families across the US, it's convention season, which usually means it's time to evaluate what curriculum may be working for your family (and which may not,) and start thinking towards the next school year to come. Our family usually schools year round, so I really need to have our next curriculum ready when we are close to completing the current one.
I've learned so much about the Charlotte Mason theory of homeschooling over the past year, and most of it has been well received by our children. Nature studies, living books, a wide buffet of ideas to choose from, classic literature etc. I have no doubt that my children have learned much and grown scholastically over the past year.
The biggest problems that I have had following this methodology of teaching, is that my children aren't learning together, that I feel strongly that their studies should be based on the Bible, and that the retention just hasn't been as good. My children have repeatedly asked that we go back to the Weaver unit studies, and after much prayer, my husband and I decided that that would be the best choice for our family.
(I'm looking forward to adding a Charlotte Mason "flavor" to our studies!)
For those who haven't heard of the Weaver curriculum, it's a Bible based, unit study that includes grades k-12. There are 5 volumes, which you work your way through cyclically. (Your children could theoretically go through all 5 Volumes, 2+ times, though the last couple of Volumes tend to take 1 1/2-2 yrs to complete.) Each Volume has a corresponding Day by Day (an easy to use lesson planner already laid out for you), and Supplement (which adds 7-12 grade objectives to make the Weaver a k-12 grade curriculum.) Weaver uses more of a spiral approach, continuously adding to your child's knowledge base.
As I mentioned Weaver is Bible based. The days lessons begin with Bible, and then move on to Social Studies. Science, Health, Creative Writing, Language Arts (there are some L. Arts objectives in the Volume itself, but Weaver also has a Language Arts curriculum. Wisdom Words for k-6 and then there is Highway to English Grammar and Learning to Love Literature for the 7-12 grades. ) One of the biggest blessings of the Weaver program is that all of our children can learn together, at their own level.
Alpha & Omega has a free sample online of Weaver that you can download.
(The Teaching Tips and Techniques and Skills Evaluations books are wonderful to have even if you don't end up using the Weaver curriculum. TT &T has awesome suggestions for new (or even veteran) homeschoolers, and Skills Eval. gives a good idea of what things should be covered in grades k-6...helps with all those "holes" that us homeschooling moms dread so much :)
I was able to find sets of Volume 4 & 5 used on Vegsource.com....and we didn't even wait til the "official" end of this school year before jumping back in :) Today was our 4 day, and I can't tell you how much we've all enjoyed it! It was like sinking into your favorite comfy clothes after wearing work clothes all day! :) The kids are loving it, and the older ones are helping to guide the younger ones...which is very cool :)
Now if I could just find a math curriculum that works with all of our munchkins......