Day 2 Homeschooling Update & Curriculum Part 1

by Caroline on April 9, 2013

So, we’ve gotten through Day 2 of our new homeschooling adventure, and I’m pleased to say that it went much better. Everything went much faster than I expected, and I ended up having Bubbles go further in math and M-bug do more grammar than I’d originally planned. I’m wondering if having them do a bit of one subject, switching to another one or two subjects, and then coming back to the initial for another go would be a good idea. They both have a pretty low tolerance for doing any one lesson for a really long time, but seem readily able to come back to one after a break. Definitely an idea. We might be able to get even more done than I’d expected. Of course, it somewhat depends on what the girls, M-bug in particular, can remember the next day. With her long-term memory issues, repetition is key.

On to the curriculum! I’ve broken it up into a couple posts so as to not overwhelm you with what’s interesting and important to me, but not exactly earth shattering for you. But here goes.

Here’s what’s in our initial line up:


Bubbles’ math and grammar books, plus her history readers.

Bubbles (6th grade, 12¾ years old):

  • Grammar:  Shurley Grammar Level 4
    • Shurley Grammar is essentially an intense grammar intervention program. Bubbles, a 6th-grader, doesn’t really have a grasp of parts of speech or how to write a complete sentence. This will teach her that, and more. It’s got jingles for just about everything concerning grammar, and while they’re not her favorite part of the program (they’re a bit … childish) I guarantee they’ll get the information stuck in her head.
  • Math:  Math-U-See, Delta (Division)
    • We used this at the beginning of this last school year, but it was too difficult to add on to the amount of math required for the virtual school, and we eventually dropped it. Division is a bit behind where Bubbles should be, but she needs to have a better command of it. If today was any indication, she’ll be able to get through it quickly, and on to content that is closer to grade-level.
  • Reading/History:  Sonlight D+E Reader Kit
    • Although she has trouble focusing on and comprehending school text, Bubbles does like to read. Last quarter she read The Hobbit for a book report. It probably helped that I read it aloud to both girls last year and that we let her see the movie last December, but she did a good job on her report and enjoyed finding the differences between the book and the movie. I’m hoping that the enjoyment she gets from reading stories will extend to reading the Sonlight readers. They’re real books — some fiction, some historical fiction — that relate to a certain point in history. In this case, it’s early U.S. history. I’m not presently using a separate history curriculum to deliver facts and dates, so I hope the readers will help give her an idea of what it was like to actually live during this period.
  • Spelling:
    • The girls used at school, but none of us were pleased with how the program worked. We used Spelling City before attending the virtual school, so we’ll see how it goes. I’ll use word lists from online sources.

M-bug’s math and grammar books, plus the readers.

M-bug (4th grade, 10¾ years old):

We’re not doing anything specific for science right now. Since both girls are still lacking proficiency in anything close to grade/age level math and reading skills, science is going on the back burner. Probably, most field trips we take will be scientific in nature, and the girls will be able to use BrainPOP for anything they’re curious about.

Tomorrow I’ll share with you some of the extra activities we’re doing, so be sure to check back!


{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Janna Pyle April 9, 2013 at 7:32 pm

You could check out when you are ready to look at science. She gives you everything you need and it is very hands on.


Caroline April 9, 2013 at 8:00 pm

Thanks for the tip, Janna!


Janna Pyle April 12, 2013 at 1:19 am

You’re welcome. Let me know what you think if you decide to try it. Another friend asked if it would work with her son with Asperger’s. I told her I didn’t see why not, but I had no way to know for sure.


Caroline April 12, 2013 at 8:23 am

Will do!


Char April 16, 2013 at 10:38 pm

I have friends who use Sonlight and just read the books- no other history spine. Their kids seem to have a fine grasp of history. I think the books give a better sense of what the times were like and how things happened historically than just dry facts laid out in a textbook. I don’t use Sonlight but think it’s a good choice. For American History- mainly for overview purposes, we use This Country of Ours by H.E. Marshall. One has to be a bit careful though because the author uses terminology that we would find offensive now (redskins and pale faces). I read it to the kids and I edit as I go although they have heard the lecture of how these were common terms then but considered offensive now. Many people like Mystery of History. I can’t think of any others at the moment but I probably will after I finish typing this.


Char April 29, 2013 at 11:10 pm

I was wrong- I asked a friend who uses Sonlight and she said they do have a History spine- one with all the overview but I can’t remember what it’s called. 🙂


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