Like most homeschooling families, our curriculum is hand picked each year by me. In doing so, my choice is dictated by the learning style of each child. Fortunately, they both really enjoy listening to me read aloud from Story of the World and both have had great success with Singapore Math. They both respond similarly to other curricula I’ve used so this makes making new choices easy – as well as less expensive since they can use the same textbooks (I need only to buy new consumables or workbooks).

One of our favorite components of our history curriculum is the use of a Book of Centuries or Timeline Book.  Buddy began his just a year ago and while we were setting his up, Sweetie decided she wanted to redo hers.  She was not happy with the way she had done hers previously so I helped her set up a  new one.  Essentially, they both now use a spiral bound notebook with hard covers (found at Barnes & Noble).  On the left side they adhere the timeline figures which we print onto sticker paper.  One the right, they write a brief sentence about the figure(s).  Sweetie’s book is pictured in the forefront of the photo below and mine is in the background.  My book is different in that I matte the figures onto color-coded paper (one color for each continent) before adhering them into the album.

“All men who have turned out worth anything 
have had the chief hand in their own education.”
~ Sir Walter Scott (1771 – 1832)

The most recent choice we’ve settled upon is First Language Lessons; as I hadn’t formerly taught English grammar lessons to Sweetie – the kids are working through this together.  We started with volume 2 a year ago and are now underway with volume 3.   Though some of the material has been redundant, I make an effort to skim through the lessons ahead of time – sometimes choosing to omit or modify lessons according to taste.

As we proceed with our education, I am beginning to see evidence of their growing maturity. Sweetie is taking on more responsibility for her own education – working through Life of Fred independently before we continue with Singapore. She generally also completes her assignments for Mandarin with little or no guidance from me – choosing to email her tutor when she has questions. This works very well since she is truly becoming bilingual and I am not able to help her with the nuances of the language. This year, she will also begin working through a writing curriculum on her own, Writing With Skill Level 1. I look forward to seeing her blossom into the young woman I occasionally see glimpses of today.

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