We’re so excited to begin a new school year! As I’ve mentioned before, I had a really difficult time making decisions about this coming school year. This has never happened to me before in almost ten years of homeschooling, and I wasn’t sure what the trouble was. But now I believe it was because the Lord had something different for us this year.
I have this unshakable longing to pour myself out for my children. To have their hearts, because they know that I love them and want to spend time with them. To learn together, grow together, and just have fun together.
First, I tried to put together my own curriculum. Then, I thought I might try a certain curriculum, but it just didn’t feel right. Finally, I went to my husband, and together we discovered Heart of Dakota. And as we looked at it together, we both just had peace and even excitement about using this for the coming school year. We carefully chose the three plans that we thought would best fit our children. And, yes, since I will be doing three plans, I am going to be very busy!
Here’s our overall plan:
Our 6-year-old daughter (who will turn 7 in October), will be doing Little Hearts for His Glory.
- Reading: I am very relaxed about teaching reading, and, even though I had every intention of teaching her to read last year, she just didn’t seem ready. But now she definitely is. So, we’ll be using Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons (just like I did with the older three, who all learned to read at age six). After she is reading simple things, we go into the first three Pathway Readers (I only use the first three).
- Math: Rod & Staff (for no other reason but that I already had a complete grade 1 math set sitting on my shelves, and it works fine for us at that level). We’ll also be using Inchimals for some hands-on fun.
Our 9-year-old son will be doing Bigger Hearts for His Glory.
- Math: Teaching Textbooks (we’re already using this, and it was instant love–everyone loves it!)
- English: R&S Grade 2 (because Heart of Dakota recommends starting there, and I think it will be sufficient for him–and I also had this on my shelf already).
Our 11-year-old and 13-year-old daughters will be doing Creation to Christ.
- Math: Teaching Textbooks
- English: 11-year-old will be using R&S (recommended by HOD, and I already had it on my shelf!), and 13-year-old will be doing Abeka’s 8th grade Grammar & Composition II (because she requested it–she’s been using this for several years, and she likes it).
- Art and Seasonal Projects for All Ages: Art is very important to me. I will continue to come up with my own plans for art and seasonal crafts, drawing from the ideas at Deep Space Sparkle (we used a few of these last year–like this one–, and they were wonderful), and The Crafty Crow (a wealth of ideas here).
- Typing: All the Right Type
- History, Science, Writing, and so much more is covered in the HOD guides.
- Music: All four older children will be learning piano (taught at home), along with my older daughter’s continuing guitar practice.
Our three-year-old will be joining in with some of the Little Hearts for His Glory activities, and we will also be using all the ideas in my keeping little ones busy post.
I am so excited to begin! As I mentioned above, we have already started math (and love it). I have gone through each of the three HOD guides page by page, and I have made any necessary copies and filed them in a hanging file crate by week (not dated, each one simply says “week 1,” “week 2,” etc).. I have almost all the necessary books and supplies (other than the books I plan to borrow from the library). We ordered the basic sets from HOD, but we ordered some of the other books used, which saved a lot of money. One of the books that retails for $29.00, we found used for $3.00 (including shipping). I was pretty happy about that.
I made a new school year schedule, and there is a place and time for everything. I’ll wait to see if it really works before sharing it (things always look so good on paper, but they don’t always work out that way in reality).