Tag Archives: curriculum

Danger Boy’s curriculum, 2010-11

11 Sep

The school year is just starting up.  I’ll discuss everything is much greater detail as we go along, of course, but these are my picks for this year of homeschooling.

LANGUAGE ARTS

Various books, including more of Andrew Lang’s Fairy books, The Wind in the Willows, and many more.  We use no activities with literature except discussion.  I have been incredibly encouraged by how far Danger Boy has come in reading over the past year.  His speed and accuracy are much, much higher, and he’s beginning to absorb new vocabulary like a mature reader.  This had been worrying me as he was (is) moderately dyslexic, and he had no ability to learn new words from context clues just eight months ago.  He’s loving reading not only picture books and super-easy chapter books but real, substantial chapter books, too.

Pollard’s Intermediate Speller. I used to use Reading Workout, but while it was teaching Danger Boy specific spelling words just fine, it wasn’t doing well establishing patterns.  We tried Sequential Speller before that, but it was overwhelming.  I like where the Intermediate Speller “lets off,” so to speak.

Growing With Grammar 6. We did 2 last year, but it was too easy, so we skipped ahead.  This has been a good fit thus far, despite some frustration during the first two or three weeks.  Now, he flies through it.  Whatever grammar program you use, it should have sentence diagramming.

Classical Composition or Classical Writing.  We have been doing Classical Composition, but it’s teacher-intensive, and Danger Boy does much better with independent work, so we might shift over to Classical Writing.

Getty-Dubay Italic.  Right now, he’s copying in other subjects to practice his handwriting, which is not awful.  He’s doing translations from one of his Spanish textbooks as well as his AWANA verses.

MATHEMATICS

Harold Jacob’s Elementary Algebra. Math is the one last subject in which Danger Boy is routinely unfocused and difficult.  My stop-gap measure was to take away a bunch of electives until he behaved better.  I think my long-term approach will be that if he has not finished his work in one hour, he will be required to do 20 minutes of facts drills.  The problem isn’t the difficulty of the work but that he zones out during simple calculations.

HISTORY

Story of the World III and tons of supplemental books. Actually, we probably won’t get to III until spring, as we have so much else to read.

SCIENCE

God’s Design for Science, Apologia‘s General Science, tons of supplemental books, and perhaps Apologia’s Physical Science.  I’m not thrilled with Apologia’s high school books, but they are very much geared toward independent learning.  If Danger Boy can handle it, I’d prefer that he use Zumdahl‘s for his first real chemistry high school course (I got it used for $3) and BSCS Biology: A Molecular Approach for bio.

BIBLE

The Bible, of course.  International Children’s Version.  His looks like a treasure box.

LANGUAGES

Cambridge Latin, Unit 2 and maybe part of 3.  We had a setback over the summer when Danger Boy began cheating on his vocabulary flashcards using Full Recall.

Madrigal’s Magic Key to Spanish and tons of early-20th-c. Spanish readers (free on Google Books).  Madrigal’s is extremely user-friendly, even for kids, and provides a grounding for the readers.

My First Chinese Reader.  This is new to us.  Hopefully, we’ll get to it this year.

ARTS

Suzuki Violin, Level 1. STILL.

Bastien Piano Series, Primer.

Mark Kistler’s Draw Squad and Artistic Pursuits.

(If he were in public school, he would be in second grade.)