When we first decided that we should homeschool our oldest daughter Lexi, I remember being completely overwhelmed. Once you make the decision to homeschool, the first thing you need to do is select a curriculum to follow. And let me tell you, there are so, so many options out there! There are full curriculums, partial curriculums, co-ops, and did you know you can even piece together your own? One thing for sure is that I am not a teacher. Not by any stretch of the imagination! So I wanted a full curriculum that spelled it all out for me and told me what exactly to do and when.
The Curriculum We Chose
Our faith is also very important to us so to our family it was necessary that the curriculum we chose had a Christian foundation. When I began to research the Abeka program, I found that you are able to purchase an entire kit which includes everything you need, with the exception of the school supplies. Those you do have to buy on your own, but all of the books, workbooks, letter instruction, alphabet cards, etc. were included. This was extremely helpful (and still may be my favorite part of the curriculum to this day).
With Abeka, there is also the option of a virtual schooling experience, which can either be streamed or watched on DVDs. This was a total game changer for me. The information that children learn at such a young age these days is mind blowing to me! I have no doubt my daughter is going to be smarter than me very quickly. Abeka is also known as an “advanced curriculum,” and from what I have heard, it is really hard to test into it if you did not initially start out with it which is another reason we chose it to lay the foundation for our children. We used the DVDs for both kindergarten and first grade with our daughter, but chose not to for PreK4 with our son and I regret not using them. Going forward, they will all be using the DVDs.
So what does a day of school look like for Lexi?
Everyone is different in how they homeschool – that is the beauty of it. You can work at your own pace. A typical day for my daughter Lexi is ::
Lesson 1 – Bible (approximately forty minutes). This is Lexi’s favorite lesson and Sutton loves this one as well!
Lesson 2 – Seatwork Explanation (self explanatory).
Lesson 3 – Reading Part 1 (we typically wait until the end of the day for the main reading lesson).
Lesson 4 – Phonics
Lesson 5 – Writing
Lesson 6 – Arithmetic – This is one of the longer lessons of the day. There is a speed drill or a test each day, a worksheet, explanation of that day’s lesson and usually play a learning game as well.
Lesson 7 – Reading Part 2 – The Reading lesson is grouped into three different levels depending on where the child is at and they learn something different daily.
Then there is combination practice which includes both addition and subtraction. And last but not least is activity time when they do a special book or art project.
Accredited or Not Accredited?
Last year, we did not do accredited since it was kindergarten. This year, however, we decided to go for accredited since she is now in first grade. We haven’t decided yet if one day she will go to public school so we want to make sure we cover our bases. It definitely isn’t a must, but it’s a personal choice and this is the route we chose this year. We also registered as a homeschool with the state.
Homeschooling definitely isn’t for everyone, but it works well for this season of our life. It can be hard to get out of that traditional school mindset and to be honest, I still struggle with that. Overall though, I really enjoy it and the precious time with the kids! It’s amazing to see them learn and watch when things finally “click” for them.