25 August 2012

2012's Homeschooling Post

We're getting a little earlier start on homeschooling this year, which I like, because the school district here starts earlier than it did in Seattle and because we aren't going to move in September.  One or the other of those pushed homeschooling back for the last four years.  But we're starting in August this year.  That's best, because it gives us a little more room for a break in the fall.

The boys are in 8th and 6th grades this year, and the little one is still four, so we'll just keep doing what we've been doing with him.  Here's this year's plan:

Math- New Elementary Math 1 for the 6th grader and NEM 2 for the 8th grader.  We'll use NEM again this year even though they're discontinuing levels 3 and 4; I think oldest son will go on to DM 3 and 4 in 9th and 10th grades.  Middle son will do LoF Pre-Algebra with Biology and Econ and oldest will do Beginning Algebra.

History- Our beloved OUP sets have ended, leaving us to do modern history on our own.  We're using DK's giant history book, Joy Hakim's US history books a little and field trips a lot since we live in the middle of a lot of US history, and lots of library books.  We'll also cover the Soviet Union really well.  My boys know a lot more about it than your average middle schoolers, obviously, and from an entirely different perspective, but there are some gaps we need to fill in. 

Writing- We're beta testing Writing with Skill 2 this year, but it won't fill in all of our time, but there will be plenty of time to practice what they've learned in their writing program as they're doing science, history,  literature and poetry.

Grammar- Yep, we're still using Growing with Grammar after all these years.  We started with it when level 3 came out and now my oldest will be using the last level.  It's from an exciting program, but it solidly has taught both boys grammar and diagramming with extraordinarily little effort on my part. My oldest who isn't big on the whole language arts part of school is really quite good at grammar in spite of himself.

Spelling and word roots- Oldest still need work in spelling, so we'll stick with that, and we'll use Classical Roots to work on word origins.  I just have the flashcards for now because I think that's all we'll need.

Literature- We'll be reading through the WTM list as usual and writing about it.  This year is modern literature.

French and Spanish- My heart really isn't as in to these as it ought to be, so we're dabbling in a variety of sources.  If they stick with these languages, we'll need to get them into decent classes by next year.

Latin- We'll use Latin Prep 1 for now, but we'll go through it quickly, I think.  And we'll keep using Anki for all our foreign languages.

Physics-  Life of Fred Elementary Physics and we'll build lots of stuff and watch cool things online.  We'll also use the physics sections of How Science Works.

Logic- Art of Argument plus lots of logic games and puzzles

Current events- CNN student news

Geography- Online quizzes, as always, plus iTunes videos about different places around the world.

Typing- We'll try typingweb.

World religions- We'll try this website for now and see if it works for me.

Guitar, piano, scriptures, memorization, quizzes, and exersicing as usual.


  1. We just got back into the homeschool mind set ourselves this past week. I love to read what others our doing to see how it compares to what we are doing, so thanks for sharing!
    I have 2 children 5th & Kinder. For both of my children we use Unit studies and a computer program (Time4Learning) for our core. We also use a free program called SpellingCity.com for Spelling.

  2. Sounds like fun. I didn't know there was a Life of Fred physics. Have you used the math program? I am thinking about getting it for my kids, so I'd be interested in your opinion.

    Good idea incorporating the U.S. history in your area. Way to make lemonade out of lemons!

  3. LoF Physics just came out- in fact, it should be arriving at our house today in its first shipment. The elementary math books are pretty new, so I haven't used them, but we've used the middle school books and have been happy with them.