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Old 11-19-2004, 08:47 PM
mbj mbj is offline
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Abeka vs. Horizons

I just had some comments to make reguarding curriculum. Last year I had my dd doing 1st grade materials which included Horizons Phonics and Horizons Math. This year I chose to do Abeka. I have heard so many good things about it and I thought I'd just give something new a try even though we liked Horizons from last year. I'm still fairly new at this hsing stuff and I really just was very disappointed when my Abeka order came in. I had ordered the Phonics, Reading, Language, and Math. I ended up having to send it back and get the third grade materials b/c we had already covered everything and more in the second grade materials. I was wondering if this has ever happened to anyone and is it okay that my first grader is doing 3rd grade work? Some of you may be asking why I didn't just stick with the Horizons and the answer is I chose something that goes all the way to high school. The horizons only goes to the 4th grade I think and I wanted something to stick with throughout the years that would build on itself. I didn't want to be searching for a different thing to use every year for fear I might be skipping something. I need everything to kind of be in some order. Oh, to be honest I'm feeling kind of flustered and am wondering if I have made the right choices. I know she's only in the second grade. I can't be messing up too bad if she's doing third grade work. Right?....
Blessings,
Lori
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Old 11-20-2004, 11:52 AM
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Jackie Jackie is offline
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Lori, first of all, cut yourself a little slack! We all tend to second-guess ourselves. And if your child is capable of doing "more advanced" stuff, GREAT!!! Don't hold her back just because of her age!!! Grade levels are made for schools, and she doesn't attend a school. She can do whatever YOU feel she should be doing. My oldest is like yours, and my middle one is probably what I would consider about six months behind where she "should" be...if I consider what a "normal" child her age should be doing. And I keep trying to remind myself that it's OK for her! She is learning and enjoying learning; that's what is important.

As far as math goes, I use Horizons through the third grade, and then switched to Saxon. (When my oldest "made the switch", she was tested in the fifth grade Saxon book!) We may be switching again, because DH is a high school teacher, and the school bought all new math books, so DH was able to bring home the "old" books for higher math. Advamtage: IT'S FREE!!! Disadvantage: It looks very intimidating to me, a non-math person that will be responsible for teaching it
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Old 11-20-2004, 07:16 PM
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TinaTx TinaTx is offline
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Lori.....

I agree with Jackie, homeschooling a lot of times is going with our *gut* feeling! Then when we go with our gut, we get that knot in the bottom of it..

When it comes to curriculum, here are a few points that might help:

Generally, one year of curriculum from one provider is not the whole picture. Especially with *boxed* curriculums like Abeka and others. They design their curriculum with the thought in mind that your child has taken the year before and will take the next. So for example, where one curriculum provider might decide to teach grammar in first grade, the next provider will start in second. The one teaching in first might decide to focus on other skills, like writing or spelling, then introduce grammar in second. Visa-Versa. If a hser used a year, where the curriculum they used before already introduce that, then we might consider that *behind*. While in truth it could be that curriculum provider introduced some very different concepts.

Keep in mind too when looking at curriculum, that the first part of anything is generally going to be review and easy...its not until about 1/2 through, generally like Lesson 80 or so in boxed curriculum that you step up the pace.

I know by a lot of standards Abeka is considered academically ahead.

Because I school year around and don't have any down time, I generally skip forward to see how far I need to start before we get to something my kids don't know. We don't need the review that accompanies boxed curriculum at the beginning of the year. If there is a lot of review, I won't buy it. If it gets into something like around Lesson 20 or so, then I consider it.

I can tell you this, that what you start off using, you won't end up staying with or at least without some changes.

We talk a lot in our group about *gaps*,etc. in learning. Right now its not as important as it becomes in the middle grades.

By the time you get to the middle grades, you will have *tested the waters* to see what works good for you. At that time, it will become important to stick with something.

There is absolutely nothing wrong with staying with a curriculum that works. The ole *why fix something if aint broken* way of thinking, kwim?

You still have plenty of time to decide what you want to stick with in the long run....We ALL have made decisions that flustered us..

CHALK THAT UP TO EXPERIENCE, GIRL It will make you a better home educator!

Try not to make any *hard and fast* rules just yet......stay with whats working. While she is doing something that is academically challenging, keep looking around until you find a good fit..

Blessings
TinaTx
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