Friday, March 15, 2013

How I Chose Curriculum

One of the most asked questions I get from fellow homeschoolers, people who are thinking about homeschooling and everyone else is....How do you choose your curriculum?

Well...the most asked question by people who don't homeschool is something like, "How do you not go crazy having the kids around all the time?"  Which for those of you that HS will kinda make you sad, right?  I LOVE having my kids with me.  (Ok, let's be honest here...there are those days, but for the most part its true. :) 

But, I'm not getting into that debate here.

How I choose my curriculum???

A lot of researching!

When I made the decision to pull the kids out of school, I spent the next month researching curriculum.  I was obsessed!  I did a few things....
1) I called and emailed every single person that I knew who homeschooled.  I asked about what they used and why.  What they've tried, why they like it or why it didn't work.  

2) I read The Well Trained Mind.  What I really mean, is I devoured it!  Its a HUGE book.  But I read all the parts that were pertinent to us.  I took notes.  I combed over it again and took notes again.  (Actually I still do!  I look over it about every 6 months.  Once around Christmas and once in the summer.

3) I cross referenced everything from the previous two sources with Cathy Duffy Reviews.

4) I did check out some HS sites that did curriculum review, but didn't find them as helpful.  I was looking for a place that I could type in "Math" and see all of my options and the reviews, instead of a specific Math program.  (If anyone knows of such a site, please let me know! ;)

What I wish I could have done?  Actually look through the stuff.  I got to a little bit with the friends that were local, but that was a select bit of curriculum.  We have no homeschool resale store here and when we made the decision it was not during the time of a homeschool conference.

One piece of advice that I did receive is that if something doesn't work...don't be afraid to dump it and find something else.

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