We did try out a Classical option earlier but found that it wasn’t a really good fit for us. Between the age that the kids were when we tried it and my completely unrealistic expectations of what and how home education would work for us, it turned out to be the first thing to drop from our lives.
Now, however, I have finally figured out that the best way to get ‘learning’ in to my children is to sneak it in, in small doses and with as much fun as I can manage to cram in. And to be completely relaxed about the whole process as well.
This time around I am giving a secular Charlotte Mason curriculum it’s opportunity. Hopefully I’m also more aware of what is a reasonable expectation from my kids and their ages, so we are slightly less likely to founder on the rocks so quickly. I already had the two main books that form the spine of the curriculum, so even better from the planning & purchasing point of view.
For this round of learning about the ‘Ancients’ we will be doing lots of colouring in, listening to information and if I can find something on YouTube or Netflix, watching documentaries too. I’ve also learned to not put pressure on the kids or myself. I will happily do all of the reading and writing, rather than impose my expectation on them to do that (or parts of that for Master Oh). Flowing with their interest and skill level is going to be key to following a full curriculum like this, but I’m looking forward to the opportunity to introduce history on an ongoing basis.
I’ve printed out the first lesson’s worth of pictures and text and will be reading sections to go with that. The kids can colour in the pictures while I’m reading. I’ve even made the pockets out of A3 paper I had on hand and there’s even some washi tape getting in on the act. (Only because Miss Oh hates staples after she opened a birthday present that stabbed her mercilessly. Ah the trials of being young! )
For the record, the curriculum we’re going to use is History Odyssey – Ancients Level One from Pandia Press. I really liked the fact that the owner seems to have a sense of humour (read their explanations of eBook over printed and the cost of the curriculum soapbox explanation) and that they were willing to let me (and you) have access to a decent chunk of the lessons to help decide if it looked right for us. If we find that this works well for us, then I may consider their science curriculum too, but that’s a decision for later as we have basic science stuff that will see us through a few more months.
So… do you follow a curriculum? If so, what and why?
As an eclectic home educator I’m really interested in the choices people make and why. On a personal level, I love to research and look in to the different options I can present to my kids to keep their minds open and growing, so feel free to go to town with your comments if you have something you love.