Homeschooling a Large Family

Today I would like to share with you some resources that have been helpful to us as a family over the years in our homeschooling.  And then I will share with you what we are doing this year for our family…

Being a second generation homeschooler, we have certainly seen the gamut of curriculum out there.  There are some excellent resources and so many choices!  Here are some we have used (I have added a couple items that we have not personally used but had heard good things about).

 

Math and Science:

Teaching Textbooks

This is a great, fun computer math that is very interactive in the early and middle years.  Made specifically to pattern after Saxon for homeschoolers.  We give it an A+

Switched on Schoolhouse

This is also an independent program that covers all subjects actually, the Duggar family even recommends it.  :)

Saxon

Saxon has been tried and true for many, many years and we love it, especially when you combine it with the Dive Cds.

For Math Printables I have used themathworksheetsite.com for years.  A few clicks and I have great worksheets for my children…and best of all, it’s free!

 

Language Arts:

These  three above are little game show type programs that are fun for the children to use as supplemental and they are not expensive either!

Essentials in Writing DVD and worksheet files

This is a completely taught by DVD writing course.  The children watch the writing course taught by Matthew Stevens and then they do their worksheets!  Feel incompetent to teach this subject?  Mr Stevens does the work for you!

Applied Grammar

I have not used this program but was introduced to it recently at a homeschool seminar… check it out!

Spelling Power

This is one big book that covers from the beginning all the way to a senior level.  Your one stop shop for every word that you will ever need spelled and a simple way to keep your children on track.

Spelling City is a wonderful FREE resource for spelling.  You can create you own lists, or already made up lists.  There are games, vocabulary, and all manner of ways the children study the words.

Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing

In these times typing skills are essential.  This is an old standby for many.

 

History:


Mystery of History

Can I give a huge shout out to my favorite history for all ages?!  I know Linda Hobar personally and our family has used MoH for years and loved every minute of it.  With history being one of my favorite subjects I gather all my children together for “classroom time” and we love learning from MoH.  With a Christian worldview and learning biblical right along with secular history the puzzle pieces just fit together.  What Chinese dynasty was during the time of some of your biblical heroes…these things will come to life with Mystery of History!

The Story of the World By Susan Wise Bauer

Sometimes I use this alongside my Mystery of History.  In story-like form this compliments to me what I use up above.

A Child’s History of the World by V.M Hillyer

Would you like to use an old time absolute gold mine of a history book?  Would you like something that you can give your child and have them read an interesting world history in one volume.  V.M Hillyer has a way of storytelling that will have your child wanting more.  We have an old, old copy that is a treasure!  Note of Warning: there is evolution at the very beginning so you will want to edit or tear out the first few pages.

No matter what History program you use, a homeschool must is Timeline of Classics…your literature guide to every time period from the beginning to current!  No homeschooler should be without it! You can read my review of this wonderful resource here.

 

Reading:

Starfall.com 

Starfall is a wonderful resource for your early learners.  We love this computer program!  It has been so helpful for my little ones that I went ahead and paid the reasonable fee to get more access to great interactive phonics and other subjects as well.

Phonics Pathways

I have used this for years from my firstborn on.  This is a one stop phonics that only takes about 10-15 minutes a day.  Your child will enjoy reading words quickly. We make up little games for the little bookworm character that is highlighted in Phonics Pathways.  This is just such a no-nonsense phonics that is great for a large family and a busy mama.

Pathway Publishers

We love these readers.  They are pure and simple with stories that build up and edify.  Wholesome stories your children will love to read.

We have a huge library of books in our home from which we pull from for reading. We have  loads and loads of Historical fiction (*GA Henty, etc), and just plain old good solid reading material for all ages.

 

Languages:

Latin Primer, Book 1 by Martha Wilson

We have the old video taped version of this Latin course.  It has been a huge blessing to our family.  I am amazed at how much our children have been able to decifer English words based on the Latin they have learned…it is so much fun!

Unit Studies:

Homeschool Legacy–Growing up all we had were things like Konos, which for my busy, large family is just too complicated and loads of work for mommy.  Homeschool Legacy has done all the work for you!  In these once a week unitstudies each booklet stands by itself so you can pick and chose for your family.  To be used with all your grade levels this makes having fun learning, easy!

So what are we doing this year??

This year our family is changing yet again.  With baby #8 on the way this winter life will again move in fast forward.  Teaching 5 grade levels and overseeing a college student plus keeping a toddler and newborn in my arms, we have changed from our eclectic approach to a simpler, but I think exciting approach.

We are going to be using A.C.E./PACE School of Tomorrow this year for my 8th grader down to my Kindergartner.  We are very impressed with the way that A.C.E  instills in the children a good self-motivation and work ethic.  Using doable, bite size, colorful workbooks the child sees his/her progress as they learn day by day.  We have been spending the day today doing placement tests, which allow us to fill in any gaps we would like, and start them on their level, rather than being tied to a grade.  As a mother of a large family this will free me up to all the many duties I have as well as give us an organized system of schooling.

 

But I would be remiss if I didn’t address the question…

What about College?

Well our son who is soon to be 15 is enrolled in College Plus.  He is earning dual credits and Lord willing when he graduates from highschool he will also have his bachelors degree.  Want to learn more, check out our journey through CollegePlus!

And then we have alot of LIFE happening which has tons and tons of learning going on.  Watching butterflies hatch out of cocoons, raising bunnies, having “words of the day” by Daddy at the dinner table, watching historical movies, science videos, singing together and so on.

Put this all together and you have the makings of a homeschool family!

Thanks for stopping by.  Do you home educate?  What do you use?

 

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