I have spent the last several weeks planning and praying over our new school year, and this morning, we hit the ground running. My original plan had been to start last week, but, as we were still waiting on a number of books to arrive (thus rendering my yearly lesson plans woefully incomplete), we decided to put it off a week.
We made some big changes to our curriculum this year. We have been using a traditional textbook format for the past few years, from BJU Press. The material is great, and has been exactly what we needed as our family grew (unexpectedly!) over the past few years. And, I have had no complaints about it.
But, it has always been my hope to go back to a classical approach…someday. And, as I began to assess Hannah’s abilities, and needs, as well as mapping out the next…well, 18-20 years of homeschooling (yikes!), I realized that textbooks probably weren’t going to be the best approach with 4 students at vastly different developmental, emotional, and academic levels. And, because of those differing academic levels, I wanted something that they could still do together. Enter our return to Tapestry of Grace! I fell in love with this curriculum before Hannah could walk! And, as our family’s dynamics and needs have changed over the past few years, it is now a perfect fit, and I couldn’t be more excited!
So, this year, our style is what I have termed “classically eclectic.” Tapestry of Grace will be our “spine” for History, Literature (Reading), some Bible, and some writing. We are still using BJU Press to fill in Math, and Language Arts (Spelling, Handwriting, and English). We will be using Apologia’s Worldview series to fill in a little extra Bible. But, I think Hannah is most excited about our new science curriculum. My little wannabe zoologist was thrilled to learn that there was actually a Zoology curriculum, written from a literal, 6-day creation perspective! We are using Aplogia’s Zoology, and learning about the Flying Creatures of the Fifth Day. I think Hannah may have read the entire textbook the day I brought it home from the homeschool convention!
The other big change we made was adding another student to the mix! Yes, Titus has officially started “Titus School,” as he calls it. One morning as I was working on Hannah’s lesson plans, Titus asked, “Mommy, I do school too?” Well, how could I resist!? I wasn’t really planning on doing much formal school with him until next year, but he was so excited. I don’t want to push him too hard, or too fast, so we are going to try to keep it simple, and low key…we’ll be covering a letter/sound each week, plus numbers, colors, and shapes…as well as lots of time for puzzles, coloring, and Legos!
So, here are my students, ready for a new school year:
1st Day of School 2014 ~ Hannah: 4th Grade, Titus: Pre-School