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..