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  1. #1
    Junior Member Newbie
    Join Date
    Mar 2019

    Default New to Homeschooling- DS, age 8, excellent reader

    My family is new to homeschooling, so I'm trying to decide on curriculum. I live in TX, so I have to cover: reading, spelling, grammar, math, and citizenship. The research I've done brings me to the question of: which one's to pick!? These are the ones I've looked at reviews on and are positive and sound like something myself and DS would enjoy in this journey.

    All About Reading
    Reading Eggspress

    All About Spelling
    Vocabulary Spelling City

    Mosdos Press
    Growing With Grammar
    Explode the Code

    Learning Mathematics with the Abacus
    Kyoiku Dojinsha's
    Math Mammoth
    Math U See
    Primary Math (Singapore)
    RightStart Mathematics
    Shiller Math

    History Odyssey
    Chester Comix
    Horrible Histories
    Kids Discover Online

    I would really appreciate any experiences you've had with these curriculums and whether or not I can combine the "reading, spelling, and grammar" into a language arts program.

    Thanks ahead

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  3. #2


    Is your son fluent at reading? (Can he read anything, is he on to chapter books?) If so, there might not be anything more you need to teach.

    AAR is comprehensive reading, very expensive and a thousand fiddley bits, and I hated how it took 5x as much time doing busywork or prep as learning. (We couldve just read the readers without the zillion pieces and flashcards.)

    Explode the Code is phonics, not grammar. My oldest used it (8 levels, you can do about 4/school year).

    Yes, you probably can combine the language arts segments. You might also look at Language Smarts by the Critical Thinking Company. Its a workbook you can go through to have a paperwork trail (to show nosy, well-meaning relatives, I guess), and cobers grammar and spelling. Do something like Bravewriter for your literature list, and you could be good to go.
    I liked Mosdos, for the years we used it. Short, modern-zeitgeist stories with good role models, and then 6 or 8 pages of worksheets with assorted spelling, grammar, and story construction elements.

    We have used Singapore for math through level 5 (Level 6 is a disappointment), and we used the Standards Edition - based on CA standards, and a bit different from Common Core. Both my kids are mathy, and I guess I am too, so just getting the textbooks, no teachers manuals or extra workbooks was fine. YMMV

    We love Horrible Hostories - we even got the DVDs. They are British, so have that bias to them. (I learned more about the english monarchs than I thought Id ever know.)
    PBS made a show (with zillions of celebrity voices) about the Revolutionary War - Liberty’s Kids. My oldest enjoyed it around that age, it might appeal to your family as well.

    Id avoid the Time4 products, as well as any online classes at this age. I think kids really need an interactive teacher, and one who can present information in ways your kid can understand. Like riding a bike - you can watch a youtube video, then try it, but having someone help you with each step, or where you get stuck, is far less frustrating. When kids are older, they can maybe deal with less direct, tailored instruction. Even public schools seem to recognize this, and still employ humans to teach our youth.

    Good luck!
    Homeschooling DS13, DS6.


    My spelling was fine, then my brain left me.

  4. #3


    Hello! Welcome to the group.

    We used to live in Texas and you don’t have to have a separate curriculum for each item. Things can be grouped together. If you child is already reading fluently, just have him read regularly. You can do reading comprehension. I have used workbooks Language Smartd from Critical Thinking Co. and they are excellent without being overwhelming, as well as their reading comprehensions books. They cover all of the language arts subjects. I also used Schoolhouse Rock videos and Mad Libs as fun supplements.

    Horrible Histories is fun. There is also Murderous Maths which is not quite a curriculum but fun.

    Critical Thinking Co also has a math curriculum which I am very happy with, called Mathmatical Reasonings. I supplement with Khan Academy and Math Antics videos to help with uderstanding. I tried many of the math curriculums you mention and for different reasons, they didn’t work for us. I can answer specific questions if you have the.

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New to Homeschooling- DS, age 8, excellent reader