Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Looking Ahead to 7th Grade

Usually I'm all set for next year and working on buying used curriculum by now, but somehow 7th grade seems HUGE to me.  It means I've completed over half of my oldest's schooling and have 6 years left to make sure she's prepared for college (assuming, of course, that she's not taking community college classes the last year or two which might be a possibility).  Before I've always focused on one year at a time.  Now, no matter what subject it is, I find myself looking at a longer sequence of this for 7th, would put that in 8th, that in 9th, etc. up to 12th grade.  I'm certain that if Jessie were in public or private school she would be in honors level classes at this point, so I want to make sure there's enough challenge in the material to mirror those level classes.  In the end, I still have to stay within a reasonable budget as well, which seems much harder this year for some reason.  Still I've got to make some decisions.  Here I hope is a starting point.

  • Grammar:  Rod & Staff 7 (This is going well.  I see no need to make changes.)
  • Vocabulary:  VFCR B and C (A is just so-so, but I haven't found a better option yet.)
  • Writing:  CW Diogenes Maxim and Intermediate Poetry (We struggle some with CW since writing is not my strongest area, but I really think it's worth the effort.)
  • Literature:  Omnibus II (This would be a huge change for us.  We've always used the library and had a more relaxed approach, but Jessie is my strongest in LA.  It would be a challenge but also an opportunity to grow assuming I can manage the cost of it.)
  • Foerster's Algebra (I'm a little worried about this one.  From what I've read, she should be able to go from Singapore 6A straight into algebra.  She does very well with math, so I wanted a challenging program.  This one, at least, I've already found used, so hopefully I'll feel better about it after it arrives and I look through it.)
  • Latin is still up for debate.
  • Elementary Greek 2 (This has been a nice intro at a pace that isn't too overwhelming.)
  • TruthQuest AOR1 and part of AOR2 (I feel like we're finally hitting our stride with this program.  We just did American the first time through so the European history will be new to us.)
  • Still in a quandry on this one, but currently leaning to BJU Life Science
  • Logic:  Thinking Toolbox and Art of Argument (While she could handle Traditional Logic, I don't see having the funds for the DVDs.  Plus if we actually do Omnibus + BJU life +Foersters+everything else, I feel like we need to lighten up somewhere.)
  • That leaves art and music still to be decided.
Then, of course, there's the final unanswered question.  If we do all of this, do I have enough time for the necessary preparation, teaching, and discussion for Jessie while still keeping up with the younger 3?  That one I don't have an answer for at this point.  Outside classes at the coop would decrease my time, but I don't really like their curriculum choices of Saxon, Apologia, Latina Christiana, etc.  Why should I pay for a class that uses materials designed to help a parent teach their own kids?  If I pay for a class, I want it to use something I'm not comfortable in teaching from myself.  There are DVD options for algebra and BJU, but they are pricy.  There are online classes for Diogenes, but just flipping through it so far it doesn't look that hard to implement with a bit of time on my part.  Maybe I should work on the 5th and 2nd grader first.  It's bound to be so much easier.

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