Thursday, August 28, 2008

Homeschool Memoirs

It's already time for another Homeschool Memoirs post. I decided I'll do mine on Fridays. This week's theme is Agendas - our plans for the school year.
So this week I hope you will share what you’re doing this year for your homeschool agenda. Share the different curriculum you’re using. You can also include what age/grade you’re using it for, how long you’ve been using it, and why you like it.

Please share a Bible verse that has encouraged you or inspired you during this planning-process, and how.

Wouldn't you know I just posted about that last week? I won't bore my regular readers with repeating the entire post, but I will recount the curricula we're using this year for the benefit of those just coming over from Homeschool Memoirs:

Andrew - Senior

Bible - Bible Baptist Publications, Landmarks of Baptist Doctrine, Books III and IV
English - Switched-On Schoolhouse Grade 12
Science - Switched-On Schoolhouse Grade 11 (Chemistry) - 1/2 unit from last year
Math - Alpha-Omega Consumer Math
American Sign Language - undecided - we had one in mind, ordered it, didn't like it, sending it back - if anyone has any suggestions, we're listening
Speech - Alpha-Omega Essentials of Communication - second semester

I have a small unit for Andrew on writing a research paper, because we were rushed at the end of last year when it came up in his English course. I've stretched it out over 2 months, so it should only take a little time each week in addition to his regular English.

Beth - Sophomore

Bible - Landmark's Freedom Baptist Curriculum - Inspiration of the Scriptures
English - SOS Grade 10
History - SOS Grade 10 - World History
Science - SOS Grade 10 - Biology
Math - Saxon Algebra I
Home Economics - SOS Home Ec
Health - SOS High School Health - first semester
College Planner - SOS - second semester

The reasons for our choices? For Bible, we've chosen our curricula based on our family's doctrinal beliefs and the "meatiness" of the programs, for lack of a better term. Switched-On Schoolhouse has been our core curriculum for most of our homeschooling years for several reasons. My husband, having been a Christian-school principal for several years, likes it for its academic excellence. I like it for its automatic lesson planning and grading, taking a huge load off of me. I do go back and check behind the grading on quizzes and tests, but most of the work is done by the program - love it!

We learned early in our older son's high school years that we liked Saxon Math for its learn-a-new-concept-and review-old-ones-every-lesson approach. Our kids' math scores and attitudes improved right away when we started using Saxon, especially after we added the D.I.V.E. CDs.

For high school electives, we've tried to stick with SOS just for ease of use. If we can't find the ones we want in SOS, we look at Alpha Omega Lifepacs, which are published by the same company, just in work-text form.

The verse that I have used this summer in my planning is a favorite of most everyone - Philippians 4:13 - "I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me." I relied on this verse because for many years, I determined that I was going to be organized and do better and blah, blah, blah - depending on my own abilities to do these things. You'd think I'd know by now that I'm not organized, and I am lazy, and blah, blah, blah - but I didn't learn from previous years. So this summer, I just said, "Lord, I am not naturally organized, and You of all people know my lazy, sidetracked ways. I need Your strength to teach my children." Yep. And I'm claiming His promise that I can do all things - even homeschool my children - through Him. Not myself. And you can do it too, whether this is your first year or your 20th.

Please visit The Homeschool Blog Awards to see others' agendas for the year. I'm sure there's lots of inspiration over there!


  1. I'm thrilled to see another mom using SOS... I was beginning to think I was the only one! I have decided to use it this year with my oldest who is doing 5th grade on it. For me it was a decision of where to put my time since I also have a kindergartener, a 2nd grader, and a two year old. I appreciate that she can work independently while I "teach" the other two school children and corral my two year old wild child!

    Hope you have a great homeschool year. God bless!

  2. Samantha, we SOS users are few and far between. I think it has to do with the kids "being on the computer" all day, when we've found that they don't consider it in the same light - schoolwork is schoolwork to them. My husband was a computer programmer in the US Air Force for 7 years. Computers have been a part of our lives since before our oldest was born, so it was a natural progression for us. Thanks for stopping by - have a great year!

  3. mine are a long way from the high school years, but it's interesting to see what home school moms of teens chose for their materials.

    my kids love the computer too!

  4. What a great plan! I remember dreaming of my mom homeschooling me when I was a teenager...your children are blessed! :-) I pray you and yours have a blessed year. :-)


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