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It’s back to school time for most of the country! What an exciting time of year! Are you ready? Because I’m not. As much as I love the fall and get excited for back to school with my kids, I enjoy the freedom of summer and just letting the kids run around outside most of the day (except for Bumblebee, who’s not quite 3 – his birthday is next weekend).
We live in a state that doesn’t start school until September (the day after Labor Day, specifically). As a former public school student, I’ve always followed that same basic schedule with my kids. Over the years, we’ve slowly grown less attached to the public schools’ guidelines, but there’s a small part of me that just can’t keep the boys working hard all summer long. I don’t think I’d make a good year-round homeschooler! So every year around this time, it’s time to start thinking about back to school things.
I posted earlier this summer about our plans for high school. Read what Scorpion is doing, and how Ballet Boy is studying for his GED. They will also work on review products as they come up, but their basics are covered already.
Let’s talk about curriculum choices for the younger set. Maybe our choices will help inspire you. And keep reading to the end of this post for a special offer from the Homeschool Review Crew, too.
Grasshopper (4th Grade)
Literature: He will be reading a few books aloud to me this year. First up, Wayside School Beneath the Cloud of Doom. He owns an autographed copy of this book and has been desperate to read it for a long time. It’s finally time! It takes him quite a while to get through a novel, so I’m holding future selections loosely for the time being. As of right now, I plan to write a post each month with our new reading choices, but that might change as the school year progresses.
Math: CTCMath, with random other things to supplement.
Grammar: Fix It! Grammar from IEW. He got about halfway through book 1 (The Nose Tree) last school year, so he will finish that up and then move straight into book 2 (Robin Hood). He loves this program! The biggest issue I have is slowing him down; he prefers to do an entire week’s worth of work every day! But I need to make sure he understands the concepts, not just gets through the book.
Science: Every other day, alternated with history. We will be utilizing our SchoolhouseTeachers.com membership for science. There’s lots of fun science classes for 4th grade on there, so we will work through them over the course of the school year. “Discovering Disgusting Things” sounds like a good place to start for a 9-year-old boy!
History: My plan is to work on a variety of things from SchoolhouseTeachers.com. We’re going to start with their Lapbooking Through the Ages course because he did so well with the Home School in the Woods lapbook course we reviewed over the summer.
Writing: Even though he’s a little old for them, we are using My First Reports from Hewitt Homeschooling (they don’t have a landing page for all of the different options, but here’s one on mammals so you can see what they’re all about and then poke around on their site for more options). He was such a late reader that these reports work well for him, even though he’s 9 years old. They provide such a strong writing (and learning to research) foundation that they’re a fantastic resource.
Dragonfly is young enough that we’re still taking things reasonably slowly with him. He works on Reading Eggs every day, and does a combination of Math Seeds and CTCMath for mathematics. I also plan to start him on Khan Academy Kids this year. Bumblebee has been playing with that app and loves it, so I know Dragonfly will too. We will also continue to have him read simple books, with the goal of graduating to more mainstream books (maybe even his first novel or biography) in the spring. I will also add in a few things from SchoolhouseTeachers.com for him, and maybe a few lapbooks from Homeschool Share. I want his first official year of school to be both well-rounded and fun, and I think using this combination of resources, without focusing on specific subjects, will accomplish that.
I also plan to read the New Testament aloud to these two kiddos. It was about this age when the older set and I did that together, so it’s time for the younger set to get that experience too.
Now for that special offer from the Homeschool Review Crew! They’re giving away a subscription to SchoolhouseTeachers.com this week. The giveaway starts on Saturday, so make sure to head over to the Review Crew website this weekend for more information!
What grades are you teaching this year? What are your curriculum choices?
This post is part of the Homeschool Review Crew Not-Back-To-School Blog Hop. Make sure to check out other posts in this series in the linky below!