Related Post: How I Organize Our Homeschool Year for Under $1!
These are our choices so far for the 2019/2020 School Year. Check back throughout the year as we review how these have fared out for us.
Write With the Best Vol. 1
I was looking for something to beef up our writing this year and I hope this does the trick. The idea of emulating our writing off well-known authors sounds like a good starting point. This will also double-up as typing practice, since each unit requires a typed final draft. Plus it will all be put together into an End of the Year Portfolio.
Update 4/10/2020: We ended up dropping this one a month into it. With life being as stressful as it has been for the past few months, I didn’t feel like sitting down and forcing my oldest to write about things he wasn’t interested in. We may come back to it later on.
Wordly Wise 3000 (Book 3)
I noticed my oldest was lacking in the vocab department when he writes. For under $20, I figured it was worth it. I chose not to get the answer key or test booklet.
Update 4/10/2020: He zoomed through this faster than I planned! We finished it in 2 1/2 months. While repetitive in the exercises, it did help my son feel more confident in reading higher leveled books.
The Rhythm Of Handwriting: Cursive
Mason let me know he was not thrilled with this pick. We’re just doing the alphabet sections and a few words to get him going.
Update 4/10/2020: As expected he disliked this one from the very beginning. While he did all the sections I required of him, he begged me not to make him do the word practices.
45 Presidents Cursive Handwriting
For after he gets the basics of cursive. History + Handwriting = A Happy Mom.
Update 4/8/2020: We’re still working through this one. He claims that cursive is exhausting, but he likes the various facts that are in the book.
Math Mammoth 4A-4B
This is our second year using Math Mammoth. This curriculum is challenging enough for my math-loving oldest and still simple enough that he can do them independently.
Update 4/8/2020: We’re almost through with this set. Unfortunately, the author of the books has updated them, and having had a look at the new versions, I’ve decided we’ll be going back to Beast Academy next year.
Discovering Great Artists
Not a curriculum per se, but I’m going to be doing the easier projects throughout the year with both the boys and creating End of The Year portfolios with all the finished pieces.
Update 4/10/2020: We did a few of the activities every Friday, but since I decided to pare down with everything going on, this was one of the first things I let go. The boys color at the table most days, so I felt okay without having set activities.
Fizz Bubble & Flash
Once again, not considered a curriculum, but I fell in love with the witty remarks and the way they present facts about the elements to the kids. This book should keep us occupied for approx. 12 weeks if we read all the sections and do a weekly project. I might be adding in a few low-cost educational games to help with memorization and to keep the learning going long after we finish the book.
Update 4/10/2020: To be honest, I didn’t even buy/borrow this book. When it came time for us to use it, the local libraries had been shut down, and buying it seemed silly, so I skipped it altogether.
Story of The World Vol. 4: The Modern Age
We’ve used SOTW for three years combined with other curriculum. This will be the first year we purchased the full set independently.
Update: We’ve been using it for a month so far. Love the main text book as always, but we’re having mixed feelings towards the Tests, and the review portions in the Activity book.
Update 4/10/2020: I loved the idea behind this book, but it bored us half to death. I knew going in, it wasn’t written quite like the younger versions were but while we love literature-based curriculum, I felt that they tried to pack way too much info in all at once. Also, I think it would have been so much easier on my part, if I hadn’t gotten the bound book versions verses the spiral bound, it was a pain trying to photo copy the tests and worksheets from the books.
Mason loves this program. Now that they’ve added in the competitive aspect with multiple leagues to earn your way up, he’s been begging to do Spanish Every.Single.Day. Plus it’s free, which I find is amazing for such a comprehensive program.
Update 4/10/2020: He still loves this app. It will be a sad day when it comes time to switch over to another program.
Another free program we love. I’m not requiring him to go through every level since I’m making this a prerequisite to the coding program I’ve listed below.
Update 4/10/2020: He seemed to really enjoy this program. Although I think his excitement was from knowing that coding was up next.
A fun combination of video games and coding. Being a lover of both myself, I tested out the entire first dungeon of the free levels. I’m not sure if we will be upgrading to the premium version ($9.99/month), but so far it’s been pretty awesome.
Update 4/10/2020: Sadly our usage of this program ended short when I noticed he was messing around more than learning. Maybe when he is older and mature enough to do the actual work, we’ll come back to it. Overall, I loved the idea of it.
Related Post: How I Plan Our Homeschool Year
That’s it for now! Tell me what you’ve chosen this year in the comments below!
Check back throughout the year as we review how these have fared out for us by subscribing to the newsletter and following on social media.