2016-2017 Favorite Homeschool Resources

Here’s what we’ve been loving this year:

ENGLISH: 

We discovered the Logic of English this year — it’s impressive.  This language arts curriculum takes the time to explain all the ins and outs of English making it far more logical (true to it's title) than I was ever taught as a student.  It’s brilliant all on its own, the icing on the cake is that it’s written for teaching multiple levels at once so I can teach my 7th grader & 3rd grader at the same time…they just have different spelling lists.

WRITING:

Another new addition to our homeschooling arsenal is Brave Writer.  There aren’t even words to describe how much we love their online classes.  The program is designed to foster the joy of writing in children and there’s something for every level.  I purchased The Writer’s Jungle, which is the parents’ guide.  It’s a brilliant piece of work, with wonderful ideas, but I found it a bit intimidating.  We signed up for the online classes where it was all broken out into weekly bits and that has made it much easier. 

HISTORY:

My son is enamored with Big History offered through OnlineG3.  I’ve overheard some of his lectures and the content is fascinating. For my daughter I’ve taken a gem of a book A Little History of the World: Illustrated Edition and created a curriculum around it.  We read a chapter each week and do activities around the given topic. 

MATH:

This is the area where we’re still seeking our niche.  Teaching Textbooks has been working for my 3rd grader this year.  I like it because she doesn’t need me to help her.  She prefers Reflex Math (which we use as a supplement), but it only teaches math facts, not concepts.  I personally like the Life of Fred books, but my kids are not interested.

HANDWRITING:

This is our second year using the Getty-Dubay method. I picked this program because the script the kids learn is beautiful and the copy work is somewhat interesting.  It also had many levels of workbooks so it will take them all the way through 9th grade and even through high school if they choose to do the calligraphy book. 

CHEMISTRY:

We signed up for the MEL Chemistry boxes this year — they are so cool.  It is not a complete chemistry curriculum so we’ve been supplementing with reading and videos. We appreciate the quality of the materials AND the experiments are interesting and relevant to what middle/high school kids are learning.

FOREIGN LANGUAGE:

My daughter is studying beginning Spanish and my son is at an intermediate level for German.  Middlebury Interactive covers both and I’m pretty impressed by how much the kids retain.  They are both currently doing the self study option, but I’m pretty sure we’ll be upgrading my son to the tutored option next semester.

GUITAR:

We found a revolutionary new way to learn guitar.  It’s perfect for children (adults too!) who would have difficulty playing a full size guitar and it’s very motivating because with simple finger patterns anyone can start playing great sounding music right away.  You can find out more at Liberty Guitar.

OUTDOORSMANSHIP/LEADERSHIP/TEAM BUILDING:

This is a site specific resource, so it will only be useful to those within driving distance of York, ME... I decided to include it anyway because it is a true treasure.  The White Pines Ways of the Wild program is truly unique.  It’s a once weekly drop-off program and the children spend from 9am-3pm in the woods.  They do outdoor challenges, orienteering, learn to identify flora & fauna, forage for edibles, sing songs and reflect on their experiences.  It is a magical day for them every week.