This is Part 2 of Choosing Homeschool Curriculum for the Elementary Years. We covered 3 areas in part 1-now we come to the fun part!
4. Other Subjects
Now that you have covered the basics from part 1 in this series, (math, phonics, and copywork) you have the freedom to choose what else you feel is important to teach your children. The subjects that are left are subjects such as science, history, music, art, and Bible. I listed all these as other subjects because of 2 reasons:
- These subjects are not covered very deeply in some of the earlier grades and/or will be repeated later. In other words, if you don’t have a science textbook in the first few years of school it won’t affect your child’s academics (unless you feel it is important-see point #2 below). Often children learn more by planting a garden than by reading about seeds and plants in science. Some of the texts for the early grades are really basic. And most likely your children will have a chance to study the exact same thing later. (If your child learns about static electricity in the 4th grade instead of the 2nd grade, it won’t have an impact on your child ‘s future.)
- Science, History, Music, Art, etc. are important subjects, but the parent really has the best discretion on whether they need to be studied deeply in the early grades. If your child obviously loves music and/or you feel that it is important to start formal music lessons early than you can choose to spend time on music lessons. This is the freedom that we homeschoolers have: we can choose our own priorities for learning!
My Priority List for Homeschool
I thought it might be helpful if I told you what my priorities are and what curriculums I use. (I know I always enjoy seeing other parent’s list of priorities for their family and homeschool!) My main priorities for the elementary years are to:
Teach my children that learning is enjoyable (Read them lots of enjoyable books!)
Teach my children the Bible.
Teach math with a solid curriculum.
Use phonics to teach my children to read.
Use copywork to teach other language arts skills.
Teach my children about God’s influence on the formation of America.
Expose my children to truly beautiful, intricate music and art.
And now, I want to share my exciting news!
I already mentioned some of my top picks for math and phonics. Right now I am covering all the other priorities listed above with my new Early American History-A Charlotte Mason Inspired Unit Study!!
I created this unit study to be an enjoyable introduction to American history with an emphasis on the Biblical foundations of America. It includes copywork and enrichment activities like music and picture study. It is based around fun books to read! My daughter and I are enjoying it so much! And, I know she is gaining valuable language skills through the copywork and through listening to me read. I am also giving her a picture of what motivated the Pilgrims and the Puritans-and giving her a glimpse into what God was doing when the foundation for America was being laid.
A typical day of the Early American Unit Study looks like this: Most days we read a delightful book. My daughter copies a historical sentence from one of the copywork pages. Sometimes we glue pictures to our timeline, or look up one of the interesting websites included in the unit study. Because it is enjoyable I am also teaching her that learning is fun-which is a top priority for me in the Elementary years of schooling.
The Early American History Unit Study is a good way to try out a relaxed style of learning and cover some history and language art skills at the same time. Click here to learn more about the unit study.
This post was shared at Favorite Things Friday and