C is for Curriculum

Maybe it’s because it is spring, the time of year when home school conventions begin, or maybe it’s because I just finished a review of A Journey Through Learning and I’ve started a study of Ancient China using the Great Empires study from Home School in the Woods. Maybe it is because I need to start thinking about the next school year, though I don’t want to think too hard about the fact that I’ll only be planning for 3.  Whatever the reason, my mind has been on curriculum and curriculum planning.

Over the years, I’ve collected lots of curriculum. I like new stuff but over the years I’ve learned that I don’t need to buy and try every new trendy curriculum.  It’s ok to stick to what is working, especially if it is working well. Sometimes change is good and sometimes curriculum changes are necessary to preserve the sanity of student and teacher!

I’m not making too many changes to the line-up for Supergirl but here’s an outline of my plans for her:


  • Math ~ TouchMath ~ This has been working so well for her that I see no need to change.  I don’t know how long it will take us to complete the 1st grade program so we’ll just keep going and worry about grade 2 when we finish grade 1.
  • Language Arts ~
    • Reading ~ I have tried so many programs but I think my favorite is All About Reading.  We still have plenty of Level 1 to use.
    • Handwriting ~ No changes here either!  We’ll be sticking with Handwriting Without Tears grade 1.  I plan on buying grade 2 when she’s ready which will not be soon.  Because of her fine motor skills we’re taking it slow and adding in lots of practice!
    • Writing ~  I have loved everything I have used from Excellence in Writing so I’m going to stick with Primary Arts of Language Writing. I do own the Reading portion as well but I really like AAR better so we’ll use PAL writing except using HWT. We could move on to Section two but I want to do more printing practice with HWT.  We’re using the class journal and story summary sections.  Soon we’ll be adding in All About Spelling.
  • Science ~
    • Zoology 3 from Apologia ~ We are both enjoying this so we’re going to continue but we’ll take breaks every now and again to cover other topics. 
    • Hands of A Child Lapbooks ~ I have several of these.  I think the idea of doing lapbooks is part of why curriculum is on my mind.  I found my CD-ROM that has all my PDF lapbooks.  There are several science related topics.  We’ll use these on our breaks from Zoo 3
    • Supercharged Science e-science ~ I haven’t completely decided about this curriculum choice for Supergirl.  I think I might try to match up some science videos with some lapbook topics
  • Social Studies ~ This is the area that I have most struggled with and am most excited about right now.  This is where my heart is starting to go pitter patter as I contemplate curriculum!
    • Great Empires ~ I have just started a review of this activity study by Amy Pak.  We’re starting with Ancient China. We’ll slide in Mongolia from China and then I’ll have to decide which empire after that. This excites me because I am getting back to what I love, reading books.  We’ll be reading some library books and reading some books I already own and using the Great Empires Activities to provide some hands-on projects. 
    • Hands of a Child Lapbooks ~ I know I mentioned these for science but I have some that are history/social studies related as well.  When we finish Great Empires, we’ll pick Project Pak from HOAC and continue with adding in lots of reading aloud!
  • Electives ~
    • Spanish ~  We’ll continue with Song School Spanish, after that I don’t know but we might go back to Song School Latin
    • Art and/or Music ~ I am thinking we’ll read some of the Art books we have around here and maybe we’ll do a lapbook (Do you see a theme here? Read a book, create a lapbook?  LOL)
  • Anything that we happen to have the privilege of reviewing for the Schoolhouse Review Crew.  I know there are some great things coming in the future!

I would talk about the curriculum ideas for Tailorbear and Turtlegirl but right now I’m still in the pondering and thinking.  I suspect that I’ll be more excited to plan out high school choices and choose curriculum after I’ve read High School Prep Genius from College Prep Genius. (Yup another crew review item!)

Have you started choosing curriculum yet? What programs are you contemplating?

Blogging Through the Alphabet


  1. I'm using some of these...PAL, Handwriting Without Tears and Great Empires! I'm really interested in Song School Spanish, and I'll probably add in some of the $1 lapbooks from A Journey Through Learning to go along with some topics.


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