What curriculum do you use? And does anybody use Lifepacs?

[deleted account] ( 26 moms have responded )

Hello, I am homeschooling my Kindergartner and this year we tried Christian Liberty Press. There are aspects we liked about it (Science, Math) and those we didn't (Phonics, History). I actually am now using Hooked on Phonics for her phonics with the workbook from HOP as well. I am debating on trying AOP Lifepacs next year, or trying again with Christian Liberty and just using HOP for the phonics program instead of the CLP phonics program. Does anybody have any suggestions? I briefly debated on My Father's World, but decided I want something I will stick with long term, and from the looks of it you have to do a lot of supplementing with MFW after 2nd grade. Any suggestions or insight would be appreciated!!
Misty

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Krissy - posted on 01/25/2011

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Ok, I'll try to keep it short... I'm not super experienced, so I'll just say what we've thought of what we've used this year....

Life pac... blah... it would have been worth it as PART of her language arts, but not at that price... I had to suppliment grammar, reading, and more just to feel I was teaching her much L/A... (but we reach a little academically...maybe too much) Other people might feel life pac suits them. It's good for independent work and teacher check, though.

Saxon Math... good for my advanced 9 year old doing 6th grade math this year, (however, she doesn't do all the work... half the problems done well is enough for me... it's a lot of work for her as she's not as mature as she is mentally)

Saxon for the younger grade (1st grader doing 2nd grade saxon)... ok... um... he could have skipped another grade... this is soooo redundant... but for some one that needs repetition... it works... just be willing to drop the "math meeting" portion if your child is rolling their eyes in boredom! However, he did pick up and learn a few things this year, so it has worked well enough.

MFW.... I honestly cannot praise this curriculum enough. I babysit, homeschool, and have a todder/preschooler.. I will be honest, one of those three would have had to have stopped this year if it weren't for how easy MFW was.. And talk about learning... they have just absorbed it and learned it so well... but it's a lot of reading to them and teaching to them... mine learn audibly really well, and I enjoy teaching orally... so that helps. But it's done is short spurts... it's easy to do 2 lessons in a row to get a day off or to change things around as needed... but the plan is so simple to follow, and my kids have learned so much about the heart of God this year!!!

My son (6) is just getting into Learning Language arts through literature, and we supplement with reading workbooks, grammar workbooks, etc... but we are only doing one lesson a day... I don't want him pulling too far ahead without really learning... so far, this looks like a good way to teach L/A... but we are only on lesson 2 and at his age, it's 20 minutes of teacher led time with him and then let him finish the supplemental stuff on his own.

Well, we've done a few others, but most of those were pieced together from used things here and there... so i can't say much more about actual curriculum you'd currently find on the shelf.

[deleted account]

When I began Homeschooling over 15 years ago.... I REALLY researched what was out there. And, found "Calvert" to the the absolute Best of the Best. It is an actual Day School in Maryland, and cost around 1,500.00 per semester to send your child there. They wrote curriculum for Homeschoolers, Many Missionaries use it. It is Vibrant, Interesting, easy to master new concepts, NOT a bunch of "busy work", and FUN! After I began Kindergarten, I went to a Homeschool Meeting where I found out that "Abeka" was what most families were using in my area. I thought I must have missed something. So, I changed us to Abeka.... NOT what you want to be using with a big family. WAY too much "Busy Work". And needed flash cards for this, and boards for that, always needed "something else". Then I went on to try a specific subject for this, or that,and basically put together my own curriculum. Well, lets just say, that MANY years went by, children got frustrated, Mommy God Frustrated, and "Finally", someone mentioned they were using Calvert.... I thought, THAT was what I had originally decided on, and that was what I needed to go back to! Well, my children "THANKED" Me, immediately! School Became FUN again, got rid of confusion, busy work, AND, the children could learn a new concept, master it, and Move On! We LOVE CAlvert Curriculum! And, they have the absolute BEST Teachers Manual I have EVER come across! That Teacher's manual is an Amazing Resource! Plus, any concept that we did not understand, we have counselors on hand for us to pick up the phone, call, and explain to us! Calvert is the BEST Curriculum I have Ever Used in our 15 plus Years of Homeschooling! http://homeschool.calvertschool.org/?gcl...
Hope this is Helpful to You~
Very Sincerely,
~Diwith5~

Robin - posted on 02/11/2010

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Abeka is wonderful. I used it for my oldest when she was in Kindergarten. This coming up school year I will be homeschooling her again as well as my youngest and will be using Christian Liberty. My oldest is currently 2nd but will be doing 3rd at home and youngest will be in Kindergarten. My little one already has a pretty strong foundation in phonics and goes to speech therapy 2x a week. Just starting out though, I would supplement the phonics program with abeka or something else. Explode the Code is supposed to be really good and I did that with my oldest when she was 4 but she didn't start reading till she was 6. My youngest is really smart and wants to read NOW. lol I keep telling her she has to learn her phonics and sounds first. She did however pronounced the word "Sack" yesterday and I was shocked. So it just depends on where your child is and what you feel will work best for them. I think Christian liberty will be perfect for us. I decided not to use Abeka anymore because it's a little more than my budget and the math books are jumping around too much right now. My oldest is getting extremely confused with money, time, and multiplication. It's throwing too much into one book that she isn't ready for. I do school pretty much year around but our official start time for new curriculum is August when the other schools start. I try to keep it similar to the school calendar so that they get breaks too. I don't really have a set daily schedule. I usually do Bible first, hard subjects or ones that they complain about most, then do the rest afterward. Hope some of this has helped. If you have any questions don't hesitate to ask. If I don't know, I can certainly find out for you. My mother in law has home-schooled for 20+ years so she also knows a lot. =)

Laura - posted on 02/10/2010

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I have homeschooled my children for several years. My oldest has graduated HS. I use ABeka in the early years for their phonics program. I use ABeka through the 3 or 4th grade. In the middle grades, I use a mix of different things. As they progress to HS I used Bob Jones. This worked for me, and I have a child in 1st grade, and 7th grade now. The other two have finished. Hope this helps some.

Janet - posted on 02/08/2010

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I started out using Lifepacs. I thought they were okay. Language Arts is a nightmare in this so we stopped with them and started using Learning Language Arts Through Literature. That was better for us.

26 Comments

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Tammy - posted on 12/29/2010

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We started homeschooling 4 yrs ago, my daughter was in a charter school at first. Wish I had started at the begining believe me! At first I wanted something all inclusive so I wouldn't have to do much planning so i tried to get everything from one curriculum. I now know better. You don't have to get everything from the same line. For language I can't stress enough how Spell to Write and Read has opened my eyes to language, period. Hind sight...I would have used this from the get go. Talk about cheaper too. It is a whole start to finish program from non reader to 12-13th grade reading and spelling. It uses true phonics not the partial stuff that's out their. So far, everything else I've seen has been "tainted" with whole word instruction and they are not compatable.

Check out this http://www.bhibooks.net/f/Senate_Speech.... and you'll see what I mean.

We used Cursive First for handwriting. Awesome! My 6 yr old son has better handwriting than my 12 yr old daughter because he didn't have to transition.

I am in love with Apologia for science. We are currently still using LifPac for Hist/Geo and Bible but I'm looking into different things to add more into it.

Over all I found LifePac to be a little too easy. I had to ge tmy son the 2nd grade when I saw that the first grade Bible was what we were teaching the preschoolers in Sunday School at church.

I di like AOP's Switched on Schoolhouse for the extra classes though. We started with that at first but my daughter wasn't real interested in the computer thing at the time.

My 2 cents!:)

Tonya - posted on 10/18/2010

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This was alot of great info , have been wondering what I need to do .. this homeschool thing is more work than I thought THANKS!

Rose - posted on 10/15/2010

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we are using plenty different curric. some of them are phonics: primary phonics, ordinary parents guide to teaching reading; readers: horizons from alpha omega; science combo: CLP world God made, A beka 1st grade one, we are considering AIG (answers in Genesis) God's design series for next yr; math combo: made up s&s plus mammoth math, saxon, and MUS math you see; gral knowl. Classical conversations guide (history, geography, English, math, latin); Bible: OT review (stick figures) from grapevinestudies.com; Spanish: Rod and Staff spanish curric levels a,b,c; and others etc, etc...:)

Heather - posted on 10/12/2010

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Lifepacks look awesome! I would probably use them if we could afford them...

Rebecca - posted on 10/06/2010

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I have been using My Father's World for four years now and we are happy with it. It is more flexible than a lot of the programs I have researched out there. It is fun and more parent child interactive (which my busy boys need). I just recieved some free Alpha Omega curriculum and it does'nt work well for us.

Teri - posted on 08/24/2010

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This year we're using:
Bible and History: Sonlight Core 3
Math: MUS Alpha for my 7 yr old and Aleks Math for my 9 & 10 yr olds
LA: Learning Language Arts Through Literature, Red, Orange and Purple
Science: I'm hoping to use A Reason For Science
Art: Christ in Art History
Music: Piano and guitar lessons
French: Standard Deviants

Cheryl - posted on 07/02/2010

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Tracy, there are TONS of used curric sites out there. If you put in the effort, I'm sure you could find it!!
ebay, craig'slist, the homeschoollounge.com, HSLDA'smarket, vegsource, etc etc!!!
I'm doing K and 2nd this coming year using Weaver- also by AOP but totally different from what you're looking for. I got mine used on the Weaver's yahoo group from another mom about 1/3 the cost from new.

The thing about K is you shouldn't have to spend more than $100 in my humble opinion and I know many who do it for alot less than that. Don't feel pressured- it's Kindergarten!!!

Tracy - posted on 07/01/2010

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My husband was home schooled and we are going to be home school our Kindergarten and Third grader this fall, we are using AOP. My mother-n-law is going to help me. I wish I could find a cheaper price though, I mean what they are asking is cheap, but if someone has the kindergarten set and I would just pay shipping that would be great, but I doubt anyone has it and would be willing to do that.

Linda - posted on 05/17/2010

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I've homeschooled for 14 years. I use A Beka for math/language in elementary school, saxon for math in jr/high school, apologia science, Spelling Power for spelling, and I have used a variety of history curriculums including Sonlight, Learning Adventures, Beautiful Feet, and next year we are going to do Tapestry of Grace. For handwriting, I started off using abeka, then did Reason for Writing--but now I just have them copy a verse from the Bible into a notebook. I also use the Potters School extensively in high school. It's an online Christian school which offers classes to homeschoolers and MKs. I have done English, French, Latin, Chemistry, Physics, and Government classes with them. (They are a little pricey, though--about $425 a class for one year.)

Azure - posted on 04/19/2010

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I have just finished my son's first grade year using Accelerated Christian Education or A.C.E. They are wonderful. They use PACE's to teach your child. They have homeschool curriculum and they have an academy for homeschoolers to help with what they need to accomplish along with a counselor. Check them out at schooloftomorrow.com

Andora - posted on 04/13/2010

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we used lifepac a couple of years ago and the girls loved it but i found that they were simply getting the work done, not necessarily learning. they are both tactile learners and kinetic learners so for them it was simply "putting in their time". it seems to be a great resource, but not for all kids.

Rachelle - posted on 04/11/2010

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Diana, I'm so glad you posted because I have been homeschooling montessuri for about 6 mo. and am running out of ideas. i to have researched curiculum untill blue and i am settling on calvert. i'm glad you posted because you have made my final decision. we are going with calvert too. i love their pre-k kit and the music kit too. i havn't seen one like it anywhere! good luck everyone with your home schools!

Misty - posted on 04/05/2010

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I love love love my father's world. I am teaching 3 different kids Kindergarten right now. My daughter has a very short attention span and my neice is already reading! they are on such different levels, but I use the same stuff. It is soso easy to understand also. I am sad that it does not stay canned as they get older, but I use the singapore math that they suggest with my 2nd grader and love love it!
MFW is easy to follow and can be used on kids with different learning styles and abilities.! ;)
Misty Downs

[deleted account]

When it was my oldest I was homeschooling for Kindergarten through 3rd grade we used Five in a Row to explore the different subjects. I use Horizons Math and Phonics/Reading. (Both are from Alpha Omega Publications (AOP)) Trips into the community--zoo, gardens, museums,parks, different types of stores, etc for learning experiences.
Now, with my fourth and fifth, they pick up bits and pieces from the never ending commentaries at home, Animal Planet, PBS. We use Reading in 100 Easy Lessons and Horizons Math. Explode the Code workbooks and other various odds and ends worksheets. I like to use connect the dots to work on counting and number recognition. They also work on fine motor, paying attention to details, and neatness.
School is very gentle in our house until the 3rd grade.
I have lots of wiggly gigglies. Too much time in a chair is torture for them and me. So K-2nd grade, we focus on the basics, Math, Reading, Writing (handwriting (K-2)/spelling 1-2) But it is amazing how much they learn just from the world we are in and from library books.

Samantha - posted on 02/09/2010

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MFW is easy to follow. I was worried because it's my first year and I've never taught anybody to read but it is going great. I have a 5 and a3 year old that join in with my K on most things. The only thing he does by himself is reading and math. That is one thing I love about it is that everybody does part of it together (just on own level) and I don't have to teach every subject 4 times as my kids get older.

[deleted account]

Thanks everyone! So, those of you who use MFW, is it pretty easy to follow? I was leaning towards Lifepacs, because I thought it would be easier. I do in home daycare, and tend to stay pretty busy. RIght now, using CLP I have to plan the whole week, and decide what she is doing each day, and I have come up with a lot of hands on activities for her because CLP doesn't have much. I try to incorporate the daycare kids and my 3 year old into the hands on activities. Is this something I could do with My Father's World or Lifepacs. I have to admit, my first choice was MFW, but I went with CLP this year because it was cheaper, and we just started in January (she was in PK at our local school before).
Thanks,
Misty

Samantha - posted on 02/08/2010

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MFW is great but we are only on K. From looking at the web site I think the sell everything you need. The books for reading you can go to the library but I would think you need more reading for most curriculum (but we love to read). I have a friend using it for 3rd grade and the only thing she is using different from what they sell is math. She uses math u see.

Cheryl - posted on 02/08/2010

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Actually, from what I recall when looking at them, MFW sells all the books you'd need for the rest of the elementary/jn high grades in their package, you shouldn't have to supplement more other than math and languages arts. CLP is a tough phonics program but once your daughter is reading basic phonics from HOP- I'd give it a try again. It's very thorough and she will definately learn the phonics rules and get lots of practice. I usually don't recommend it to my friends with Kindergartners unless they are already reading basic short vowel, three or four letter words and have been writing some. We loved it for K but I had already found 1st grade Abeka at a used sale, so we're trying that this year- I actually think it's a step back and slower for my 1st grader in the phonics. But oh well, she's definately getting grounded in reading and is pretty solid. She picks up any kid book we have around the house and can read most all the words.

I've never tried Lifepacs, seems like they are more for the specific courses of jn/sn high school: biology, chemistry, etc. Unless I'm thinking of something else...

Good luck and remember, one of the great things about homeschooling is you can always change if it's not working!!

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