Aslan’s Academy Curriculum Choices for 2013-14

2013-14 Curriculum Choices

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Homeschool Curriculum Choices for 2013-14

We will start our 2013-14 at the end of July. (Where has the summer gone?) I am making plans and have our curriculum chosen and ready to go. Because so many of you ask what we’re using, especially for Princess Roo, I’m sharing a list of what I’m planning right now.

Bible

  • The One Year Bible NLT – We’re reading through this as a family this year. This has really sparked my children’s interest in God’s Word, lively discussions, and some research when we don’t know the answers to the questions that come up.
  • We Choose Virtues – We use this program to discuss God’s standards for our behavior. I love that there’s a verse to go with each one, so it’s not just an arbitrary “rule” we need to follow.
  • Grapevine Studies – I love being able to lead the kids through an entire book of the Bible, getting an overview of the story, examining key events, and seeing them enjoy drawing the timeline and events as we read together. I’ve got my eye on the Ruth study next!
  • AWANA – When the program at our church kicks off again in early September, we will all be very involved in that program. It’s a lot of fun, but the main focus of the program is Scripture memory, which I think is very important.

Reading

5th grade

  • Open Windows Reader and LightUnit Set from Christian Light Education – This will be BookGirl’s fifth year to use CLE. It allows her to do most of her work independently, which she loves, and it allows me to quickly and easily check her work, identify trouble areas, and stay organized!

3rd grade

  • The Struggling Reader – I love being able to do assessments to track progress as often as I want, and the multisensory activities to target weaker areas are fun and engaging. I also like that it’s a comprehensive program that covers phonemic awareness, phonics, sight words, comprehension, and fluency.
  • Wilson Reading System – We have used this since kindergarten to help us teach phonics in a very systematic way using the Orton-Gillingham method.
  • Dick and Jane readers (copyright 1956) – We started with the first grade, first reader and are working our way up. I have already bought through the fourth grade, first reader. The repetition in a story form that is entertaining has been a wonderful way to build fluency.
  • Ticket to Read – We have used this site since Roo was in kindergarten. It has a phonics track and tracks to build comprehension and fluency. It’s fun too!

Math

5th grade

  • Math, Grade 5 from Christian Light Education – The spiral format of these lessons ensures that BookGirl is always practicing previously learned skills while learning and applying new ones.

3rd grade

  • Spectrum workbooks – I have used these for a few years, and they provide a great way for her to practice working the problems and writing her numbers without getting overwhelmed by too much at once.
  • A+ Interactive Math – I won a copy of this program, and I love that it’s available on CD or online, explains each concept (and problem, if necessary) in a multisensory way, and allows you to work through concepts in whatever order you choose.
  • IXL – We have subscribed to this for a few years now. I use it for extra practice on concepts she hasn’t quite nailed down.
  • Life of Fred – I’m hoping this will help my reluctant math student see how math is used in real life and will put some fun back into our math lessons!

Language Arts

5th grade

  • Language Arts, Grade 5 – This is also a spiral curriculum, and I like that it reinforces the parts of speech by having the student diagram sentences. It teaches diagramming in small bites, so parents won’t get overwhelmed either. 😉

3rd grade

  • Always Icecream – This site has fun games to reinforce many subject areas, including language arts.
  • Grammaropolis – This app’s songs, stories, and color- and shape-coded parts of speech have helped us so much! Learning parts of speech is fun for both of us now.
  • Mad Libs Jr. – We use these as a silly way to practice the parts of speech we’re learning. They focus primarily on nouns, verbs, and adjectives, but you can do regular Mad Libs if you want to include more parts of speech.
  • Creative writing – Princess Roo is motivated to do a lot of this on her own, so she writes and illustrates lots of stories, and I gently guide her with spelling and punctuation.
  • How to Tutor Cursive Handwriting from Alpha Phonics

Science

  • God’s Design for Life (Answers in Genesis) – We received this curriculum from a friend, and since we had already decided to focus on biology this year, we’re going to use it as a multi-level program for both BookGirl and Princess Roo. I will make modifications and adapt it accordingly.

Social Studies

  • Ancient Civilizations and the Bible (Answers in Genesis) – I won this curriculum, and the girls and I are very excited to dive in and get started! It includes books and CDs, as well as a special set of activities for elementary students.
  • Heritage History – We used these living books last year and will continue to use them to supplement our studies this year.

Other Subjects

During the 2013-14 school year, we are also planning for the girls to participate in:

  • Art lessons with See the Light and A Simple Start in Chalk Pastels
  • Local homeschool group field trips and activities
  • Field trips to state parks, science museums, and the zoo
  • Dance lessons
  • Choir and drama (through our church children’s ministry)
  • Physical education (primarily outdoors as a family and through Wii Fit games and Wii Fit Plus)
  • Whatever opportunities present themselves!

Staying Organized

This post and many more are linked with the Teach Them Diligently Summer of Homeschool Encouragement Link Up Series and iHomeschool Network’s Not Back-to-School Blog Hop. Be sure to check out all the great curriculum choices, and link your own!

TTD 2013-14 Curriculum ChoicesNot Back-to-School Blog Hop with iHomeschool Network - jenniferajanes.com

I’m planning to attend Teach Them Diligently Convention in 2014! Find a location near you and save the date!

Teach Them Diligently Convention Banner

*This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting this site. See my disclosure policy for more information.

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17 Responses to Aslan’s Academy Curriculum Choices for 2013-14

  1. Caroline says:

    How do you keep up with so many items of curriculum at once? My head is spinning just thinking about it. And how do you plan it all out?

    • Caroline, that’s a great question!

      BookGirl’s CLE subjects are set up so that she does one lesson a day. That means she knows every day exactly what she’s supposed to do in reading, math, and language arts. She comes to me if she has a question or doesn’t understand something, but other than that, she works independently. I check all her work each day and help her with the corrections, so I can see where and why she’s making mistakes and can reteach when needed.

      While BookGirl does her assignments, I work with Princess Roo. I don’t use every math/reading/language arts program every day. I have objectives/goals for the week, and I use different tools each day to work toward them. If I use the same tool each day, Princess Roo gets tired and frustrated, so I have to mix things up.

      We do science and social studies all together, and I usually alternate days. That way we don’t feel rushed to finish one to move to the other. By alternating, we can focus on and enjoy one subject fully.

      Bible is usually done as a family in the evenings, after we eat supper together. We do the One Year Bible every night. We do a Grapevine Studies book about once a quarter. AWANA is one evening a week during the school year. The exception is We Choose Virtues. I usually start our day by reminding the girls of the virtue we’re working on, with a short discussion.

      The “other” subjects are often a day or two a week and occur all throughout the day, depending on when the activities are scheduled and when we have time to fit them in. Choir and drama are usually on weekends, so they don’t add to the weekday routine.

      I use my Cozi app and Well Planned Day planner to keep track of all of this plus therapy sessions, etc.

      Really, the key is not using every resource every day with Princess Roo, and alternating days on subjects we want to explore more fully. Does that help?

  2. My youngest and I love the Dick and Jane books. I learned how to read using them (many years ago), and now my son reads a chapter to me each night. Just love them!

  3. Jeni says:

    I have been looking at the Wilson reading program for my 11yr old there are several available thru them, some very pricey, which do you use/recommend?

    • I purchased the Wilson Reading Program steps 1-6, which is the starter kit pictured at the bottom of the page I linked to on their site. From my research, Wilson is much less expensive than other Orton-Gillingham programs, and it has suited our needs.

  4. Vicki Arnold says:

    We are using an AiG science and history this year, too! Thank you for sharing Grammaropolis, I just downloaded it. It will work perfectly for one of my students (or all..).

    • You’re welcome! Be aware that only the “nouns” section of Grammaropolis is free. The other parts of speech much be unlocked with a purchase. At first, I balked at the cost, but my husband saw how well it worked for our little princess, and he asked if I would balk at spending the same amount for a workbook. I sheepishly admitted I wouldn’t, and we unlocked the full app. 😉

  5. Caroline says:

    Yes it does, and it helps me understand why I’m always feeling like the proverbial chicken with no head. Both my girls need a good amount of one-on-one help, and it’s really difficult to jiggle their subjects around to do it. Oldest needs less, but still a fair amount. We spend most of our time on math, reading, and grammar, and the “extra” stuff doesn’t get done. Worries me a bit.

    How do you use Cozi for school planning? I remember you blogging on it, but thought that was just for general scheduling.

    • You’re focusing on the most critical subjects right now, and that’s okay. You will find a schedule and method that works for you and your family, just like I have found one for our family. Just take some deep breaths and realize that your homeschool isn’t going to look exactly like anyone else’s because your family isn’t just like anyone else’s.

      Cozi is our family calendar. It primarily serves the purpose of keeping track of therapy and specialist appointments, as well as extracurricular activities. This keeps all of us on the same page when it comes time to schedule transportation for everything!

  6. Ticia says:

    I love the name Aslan’s Academy. What a great name.

    • Thanks, Ticia! We changed our homeschool’s name from “Janes Family Homeschool” a couple of years ago after we finished reading The Chronicles of Narnia. It just seemed to fit, and it stuck!

  7. Kristin Andrews says:

    Even though I get to be part of your lives regularly. It is so neat to be allowed to see exactly what you girls are doing. No matter how it looks on the inside. You make homeschool look easy from the outside.

    • Thanks, Kris! It’s definitely not easy. I’m glad I seem to handle it all okay. Some days I want to quit! Then I remember why I’m homeschooling, and I spend some time in prayer and carry on.

  8. Pingback: Aslan's Academy: A Typical Homeschool Day 2013-14

  9. Pingback: History Revealed: Ancient Civilizations and the Bible - Jennifer A. Janes

  10. Pingback: Homeschool Curriculum Choices 2014-15 (4th and 6th grades) - Jennifer A. Janes

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