I choose all the materials myself based on my boys' needs and aptitudes. My style falls somewhere between classical and Charlotte Mason. I look forward to my Memoria Press catalog, and I'm reading Educating the Wholehearted Child right now. I like to have "spine" texts for structure, but we read lots and lots of living books. We go to the library each week and it's normal for us to have 50 books checked out.
My boys' favorite part of the homeschool day is when I read good literature, Apologia science, and Bible stories to them. They look forward to being able to cuddle on the couch with their pets and blankets. Monday through Thursday we hit the textbooks pretty hard with a strict schedule. On Fridays, we relax a bit by doing art, music, Critical Thinking Company software and workbooks, and by listening to audiobooks like Story of the World by Susan Wise Bauer. The exception to the rule is if we get a sunbreak (that's when we actually see the sun in the Pacific Northwest) then we race out to nature. You learn up here that you can't waste a sunbreak because it may be days before you get another one. So, we will often work twice as hard and quickly on our core studies in the morning so we can run out to a natural area in the afternoon. Our favorite is Point No Point. Since we live on a farm, we often just run around outside with our livestock, climb trees, build forts, jump on the trampoline, catch g's on the tall tree swing, etc. for "recess."
So, here is the list of curricula that I've come up with for next year. The grade levels are all over the place because I choose materials according to what each son needs. My younger son will be in fourth grade next year. He is already at a fifth-grade level in both reading and math, so he's working ahead in those areas. But, cursive is new to him and the A Beka Cursive 3 is a lot more interesting than the grade 4 book. It also highlights American history, which he will be studying. I only make the boys do one year of cursive. After they have mastered it, they can choose to write in manuscript or cursive. Actually, they both prefer to type on the computer. So, younger brother will move past hunt-and-peck next year.
- The Road to Phonics 3
- Intermediate Language Lessons
- A Beka Readers (Levels 5-6)
- A Beka Spelling, Vocabulary & Poetry 5
- A Beka Cursive 3
- Memoria Press D’Aulaires’ Greek Myths
- Critical Thinking Company (CTC) Word Roots A1
- CTC Reading Detective Beginning
- CTC Editor in Chief Beginning
- CTC Spelling B1
- CTC Vocabulary Smarts 2
- Lots and lots of living books
- Teaching Textbooks 5
- CTC Mind Benders
- CTC Math Analogies
- CTC Balance Benders
- A Beka History 4
- A Beka Maps 4
- The Complete Book of Presidents and States
- MCP Maps, Charts and Graphs
- Lots of historical fiction and biographies (Reading list)
- Apologia Astronomy
- CTC Science Detective
- EarMaster 6 – Ear training and sight reading
- A Beka Music Theory 1
- Artistic Pursuits
- Power Glide Spanish I
- Apologia Who Is God?
- Switched on Schoolhouse Bible 3
- Typing Instructor