Everyday it seems like the mailman brings me a new catalog full of homeschool curriculum. What can I say? I love them all! It is just so hard to decide. I was going to use K12, which is a digital school, because it is considered a public charter school (aka free) in Washington D.C. I think it might be worth a try since it would definitely be the lowest cost option, and the curriculum does look very thorough. Under closer examination it might just be TOO thorough though. It looks like it will take each kid about six hours a day to complete. I think six hours is a crazy long time for a five and a six year old to do schoolwork. The only reason public school lasts so long is that it also includes lunch, recess, bathroom breaks, and lots of wait time. I don't think a child being homeschooled in the early grades should need that long. Plus Beth and Matt would be studying totally different lessons, and with them being only a year apart I would rather group them. Not to mention I have two little girls who need my time and attention too. Sooo....I am back to reading through each catalog longingly. I wish I could see some of these programs in person. On top of my curriculum confusion, we haven't even ruled out giving the public school a try when we move this fall. I have had several people tell me very good things about it, so it is tempting to at least try it. Ahh...I hate having this much up in the air! Matt thinks I should homeschool them, but he is leaving the final decision up to me. As for the curriculum? That is totally up to me. We discuss it, but in the end I am the one who has the teaching background and has done all the research.
Our frontrunners for the coming year are:
Five in a Row - (We did last year, this kids loved it, but it would require me to add in at least math and language arts)
Sonlight....I am always tempted to buy it. Literature and history are my two great loves I think. It is expensive though. And more importantly I think I would have to bulk it up a lot to make it appropriate for Beth. She is what I would consider an average student. She brings home A's (yes they have grades in kindergarten here - crazy!) but is right on grade level. Despite that fact the Grade 1 readers for Sonlight would be way way too easy for her. That makes me wonder if the rest of the program has enough academic strength to it.
Tapestry of Grace. This one reminds me of Sonlight, but there seems to be a lot more prep work involved. I'm not sure I want to attempt it with four little kids, but I totally would if they were just a few years older.
Winter's Promise. Yet another literature/based program. Are you seeing a pattern here?
For Language Arts and Math we will most likely continue on with McRuffy. The kids did well with that this year. I also may add some kind of science program. When I start adding up totals for all these things it just gets ridiculous. See why I'm tempted to at least try to free digital school? On the other hand it is still a heck of a lot cheaper than private school.