My Favorite Things 2012 {Homeschool Favs}

Today I will share my Homeschool Favorites of 2012

You can also see my Business Favorites, Creative Favorites, Home Favorite and Beauty Favorites.

If there was ever something in our lives that I never went looking for, didn’t plan to do and could have never pictured myself doing..homeschooling is it!

If there was something that has blessed our lives immensely…homeschooling is it!

I started because I had a 5 year old that was reading beautifully and my teacher friends recommended I keep him home for kindergarten.

That was the beginning of the end.

We were hooked and it has just been what we have done ever since.

It has always been a year by year thing.

There was a year I put my kids on a public school waiting list but we never got a call.

There are many days that if I bus pulled up in front of my house I would push my kids on it.

The truth is that I would then proceed to run after the bus (probably in my pajamas and ghetto bathrobe) and take them off.

I love it.

I love my time with them and all the beautiful things we get to learn together.

Don’t think for a second…not one second..that I have amazing amounts of patience, that I don’t get frustrated, yell, roll my eyes, drink too much coffee and hang out all day in my pajamas.

All of the above can and will happen on a daily basis.

Just wanted to get that straight before I show you some of my favorites.

Homeschool Favorites of 2012

This is a quick glance at our core subjects and curriculum.

1. All of my children has learned to read from Phonics Museum by Veritas Press.  I have also loaned this to my sister and her children are learning with it too. Worth every. single. penny.

2. When we first started homeschooling I tried Math U See and after only a year I changed over to Saxon. I have been very happy with the thoroughness of the curriculum.

3. Spelling Power.  Straight forward. I don’t know if I love it…open to other suggestions.

4. We have used this science curriculum for years.  It covers everything and I make up flash cards for drilling with the kids. Crazy amazing how much they know and have retained over the years.

5. This is the only grammar curriculum we have ever used and I really like it. The CD helps the kids to remember the rules. They will probably be 30 singing the Preposition songs:-)

6. This is our writing program. My children are very creative in their writings (especially Madolyn) and this helps me to teach them proper writing structure.

7. I can’t praise this history curriculum enough. I was a history major so I love anytime we get to spend time study the past.

I wanted to break down our curriculum a little to make it easier for you to see what was our core, supplemental material and extra reading.

These are some of my favorite supplemental materials that are used everyday or each week.

1. All of my crazy homeschool loved began with THIS book and I rely on it at the beginning of each school year as a touch stone.

2. This year we are studying Impressionist paintings and painters.  We love these flashcards because they show the painting and on the back share facts about the when, where, what medium etc. We review these each week.

3. This is another book that has become a wonderful reference for me.

4. The Mathstarts series is fun for the little ones.

5. We don’t participate in any Classical Conversations co-ops but I do use their CDS for memory work. Some of the songs are completely ridiculous and none of us can stand listening to them (without laughing) but there are also useful songs.

6. I really like these series of books. This year we are using the poetry book and CD.  Easy way to expose your children to poetry and memorizaion.

7. Each morning we start with one story from this book. I don’t know how we have gotten so far away from , “Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what can you do for your country.” I want my children to never forget  (or myself) that our own country was built upon men and women sacrificing everything for the better good.  These stories are inspiring and will make you want to be better and do more.

8. This curriculum is fun for the younger children as they are learning to write.  It makes it fun and Benjamin is always happy to do it because it incorporates drawing.

9. Great DVD for learning states and capitals. I am sure you are seeing at this point that we do a lot of repetition and memory work. I truly believe that has been the most beneficial way for my children to remember what we learn.

10. I always have a book that I read aloud to them.  This is what we have been working on lately.

11. My children have taken Latin the past four years and this is the first year learning French.  I told them they have to come to France with me so I can barter better at the flea markets:-)

12. There are so many books in this series but wonderful idea books to have on hand.

13. The best game for learning geography and having fun at the same time.

14. This year we have been reading a lot of Walt Whitman. The children are currently memorizing O Captain! My Captain!.

Let’s take a little Dead Poets Society (best movie of all time) break right now….

15. This DVD history series is the best, beautifully made and so fun to watch!  I would watch these without my kids. I am not even joking but I am a major dork…so there is that.

We love books so much in our home.  We have our little library full of books and stacks all over our home.

Each year I make a list of the books I want the kids to read and they also pick out some books that they want to add to the pile.

Here is a sample of what Maddy and Jack are reading this year….

I hope this gives you a little taste of how we do school and some of my favorite tools that make school more enriching and fun.

If you homeschool, are a parent or teacher I am always so thrilled to hear what you love to use with your kids.

Please share:-)

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leave me a comment.

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Comments

  1. Thank you for sharing these. My daughter just started kindergarten but my husband and I have been in serious discussions to homeschool. You may have just given us the nudge we need to start.

  2. Wow, thank you for sharing! What a detailed post! That must have taken you hours to do!

  3. My sons are not homeschooled, but I did teach for 10 years. I love Craft Lessons by Ralph Fletcher for writing instruction.

  4. thanks for sharing, jeanne. fun seeing the big picture in one post. fun ideas and resources!

  5. ethan hawk. swoon.=)

  6. Paula commented:

    What a wonderful post full of good information. It is almost unbelievable how the world of homeschooling has changed since I started with my own children back in 1984! My youngest daughter just left home this week to teach in Hungary, and reading your blog has brought back some wonderful memories. Like you, it was never in my plan to homeschool. But then, i had never heard of it until I read a book about it. I am so grateful for all of the time it gave me with my children. Love your blog!

  7. Lisa W. commented:

    This was a beautiful post. Just something I never thought of doing. Kudo’s to all of you that do. I think my biggest fear would be that I am NOT teaching them all that they need to know AND the math department, geesh that would never happen…lol

    I was curious though when you made the comment that you once put your kids of the list for a public school, and got no call. WOW unheard of here in Michigan. Our schools funding has been cut SO drastically that they would beg BEG for more enrollment. Very sad, none of us knows what the state is thinking, teachers are being layed off, classes being cut and so on. So I was just curious regarding that.

    • I should have been more specific. It was for a very good public charter school. It has a huge waiting list:-) I could immediately get into a regular public school if I wanted:-)

  8. I really enjoy you blog. Always inspiring. Love your list!!! I’m using a lot of the same materials this year. I’m wondering if you could tell me your pros and or cons of saxton math. We just started using math u see this year and I’m really not happy with it. Blessings to you and your family.

  9. We are moving to AL next week and am not putting my kids in school for 1/2 a year, so I will be homeschooling my 3rd, 4th, and kindergartner. I will just be doing the basics: math, grammar, spelling, literature, but it’s still freaking me out. I got Saxon for math, Spelling workout (?), and was debating about Shurley English. So glad you posted this! Thanks for sharing!