Monday, January 27, 2014

Our Homeschool Curriculum ~ 2014

And so begins our new year.  We started last week with just doing a little bit each morning, then started "for reals" today.  I was a bit reluctant to share our curriculum this year, but then decided it was more pride than anything!  We've always used a Abeka for Math and Language, Apologia for Science, Abeka or Rod and Staff for History, and ACE for Spelling and Literature.

This year, I decided to do ACE for everything.  Here is where my pride comes in.  ACE doesn't have the best reputation among most homeschoolers I know.  It's the "lazy" way to do homeschooling.  It's not on par with other homeschooling curriculum.  Blah, blah, blah.  I grew up attending an ACE school from preschool right through graduation, and I always said I would never use it to homeschool my kids.  Although I really did like it.

Last year we used ACE for Word Building (Spelling) and Creative Writing/Literature.  I realized that they had updated their PACE's and they looked a lot better.  Autumn thrived in those two subjects.  She didn't like reading until last year, and that's mainly because of the good Literature books she 'had' to read.  She also loved finishing the PACE, getting a new one, and putting a star on her chart (by the way, so did I).

When working on our curriculum for this year, Autumn pleaded with me to let her do all ACE.  We know a few other families here in Katherine that homeschool, and two of those families use ACE.  I was on the fence about it for awhile.  Then over Christmas break, I just did it and ordered ACE Grade 6 from CBD.  My dad is wonderful and mailed them out to us and they arrived last Friday...just in time, whew!

I plan to share a post soon on what I do love about ACE, and maybe even share the reasons why I was so reluctant.  I will say it's been fun doing Grade 1 with Cody and learning all those silly songs that go with the letters of the alphabet.  I still remember most of them! 

I was encouraged today when I posted the top photo on Instagram and someone asked if it was ACE, I said yes, but mentioned it was our first year using it for all subjects.  A dear sweet lady, whom I've always looked up to, commented on the photo, "Jen, staying in tune with your child's learning style and pref is a vital key.  A love for learning must be the goal and all else will come together."  That was so encouraging to me.



Chris and Carole said...

Thanks for sharing! I look forward to reading your posts about ACE. You know that I feel the same way as you, and you are right, it's just pride! My kids do well with this program and we all love the accomplishment of finishing a PACE :-)

Kami Gimenez said...

We do ACE too! We love it and love the feeling of accomplishment after each PACE. We also know when we are getting behind (like about now!) We did Abeka DVDs for many years with our kids and loved it, but when we started language school, I knew I needed something that they could do more on their own while I did my schooling in the other room. It's worked so well for us. I look forward to seeing more on this!

Pirra said...

personally, the only kind of lazy homeschooling to me is the kind where the parents aren't actively involved in the moments of teaching and learning. (Probably because they are too busy with the compiling and organising and writing and finding the curriculum in the first place)
And if ACE aids you in being more there in the moment, then that's exactly what you should be using.
We don't use ACE here, but I would never rule them out definitively. The beauty of homeschooling is being able to try different methods and madnesses on for size. And to discard, change, utilise, whatever, at will.

Doesn't matter so much to me HOW the learning takes place, just so long as it does. And it's preferable that learning take place as a family unit. IMNSHO!

Sometimes curriculum choices can feel like "keeping up with the joneses" when all we really need to do is keep up with our kids interests, abilities and processes.
(Plus the kid looks positively excited. And that's what we ALL want!)