PDA

View Full Version : Need lang. Curriculum help!!!!



Sue C
09-18-2009, 06:34 PM
OK, all you wise homeschool Mom's.....:) Please don't ignore my cry for help!!! I would like opinions, everyone has one, :lol: on your language curriculum. It is in regards to my 4th grader. I know everyone has their likes and dislikes and that is why there is so much out there so please tell me what you have used, are using, what you liked and didn't like. To give you an idea where I am at, we are using Alpha Omega LifePacs for Lang.and I am hating it. It is teaching word origins and such to a 4th grader and it is frustrating her. I bought the curriculum so I will finish the year with it but I go through it with my red pen and mark off things that I feel are useless and she doesn't have to do.

I just wish everything could be as fun and enjoyable as FIAR. The one curriculum you can find NOTHING wrong with!!! :lol:

Nedra
09-18-2009, 06:48 PM
We use, and love, Queen's Language Lessons. You can view them here:

www.queenhomeschool.com

The language books are the perfect compliment to FIAR. Gentle yet effective. This will be our 3rd year using them.

AndreaD
09-18-2009, 07:13 PM
I'm really liking Growing with Grammar- both my 5th grader and my 1st grader are using it.

Hope
09-18-2009, 07:16 PM
I really like Learning Language Arts Through Literature. The lessons aren't too long and my children don't get frustrated like they did when we tried textbooks. It's gentle, but effective.

Grammar, reading, vocabulary, spelling, composition, research, and study skills/higher order thinking skills are all included in ONE book. That is a big plus for me.

The only thing I add to it is Winston Grammar, and Sequential Spelling. The program uses your child's missed words as their spelling words, but my children have learning disabilities so I add additional spelling. Also, I use Winston Grammar as reinforcement.

You can take a look at LLATL here:

http://www.cspress.com/covers.htm

Robin(CA)
09-18-2009, 07:30 PM
I haven't found that I needed anything for Language Arts besides the FIAR lessons. :thumb:

I have a degree in English with a writing emphasis and the FIAR lessons are very rich and cover a wide variety of skills -- grammar, writing, vocabulary, etc.

TrishaG
09-18-2009, 07:42 PM
We love Queen's Language Lessons here.

But, may I also encourage you that FIAR really is enough? I need that reminder from time to time, just thought you might as well. ;)

Tricia in TX
09-18-2009, 10:02 PM
This year all my kids are taking an English class at co op! dh felt we really needed to focus on math and that I should turn over LA to help me free up some time...

But the thing is, I LOVE the LA part. I HATE the math part! :roflol: but he's right, it's forcing me to focus on getting everyone up to speed mathematically.

Now on to your question.

I use the journaling/copywork/dictation method found in Love to Learn's Journal program (http://www.lovetolearn.net/catalog/product/0177501?-session=store:445ED206166a130E71nmRn8A29F0). It works so well with FIAR! Just fits right in. I used it all the way to 7th grade, just adding in some grammar and and essay/book report now and then, once we got beyond 5th.

I STILL love it. It's inexpensive, it's easy to use with multiple children for multiple years, and it creates a lovely keepsake.

It's about as opposite from Lifepacs as you're gonna get! :D

Tracey
09-18-2009, 10:12 PM
Hi Sue, I am just going to chime in on this. I do not add anything either. I tried to add spelling power but found we really just do not need it. We are going between Beyond and a few vol 4 titles, and for us I just find there are many opportunities to use for LA. I do use the books What Your ____ Grader Needs to Know to make sure we cover what we need. :)

Tricia O
09-18-2009, 11:42 PM
We use, and love, Queen's Language Lessons. You can view them here:

www.queenhomeschool.com

The language books are the perfect compliment to FIAR. Gentle yet effective. This will be our 3rd year using them.

We use and love these as well! :clap:

This is our first year with them, but all three kids are doing them (each at their own level of course).

Elizabeth I
09-19-2009, 03:53 AM
Another vote for Queen's!

Tricia O
09-19-2009, 08:38 AM
One thing I love about Queen's Language Lessons is that my girls are beginning to learn about things I wouldn't think to teach them, but in a very gentle way. The lessons are extremely short too. There is some picture study, copywork, dictation, and they've learned other things, such as how to pluralize various words, subject/predicate, how to write a letter and address an envelope, use of a versus an, how to write complete sentences, poetry appreciation, writing haiku poetry, writing short stories about the picture they studied and discussed previously, etc.

Melinda
09-19-2009, 12:52 PM
For the longest time all I did was FIAR and copywork and daily journaling (much like Love to Learn journal). This year I added in Learning Lanugage Arts Through Literature because I have zero time to come up with writing topics and copywork passages. We aren't slaves to LLATL and there are many weeks where we row a FIAR title and just write, write, write.

Sue C
09-19-2009, 01:20 PM
you are all awesome!! I jumped on here to see if by chance I had any help yet and you were all on with answers already!! :) Thank you so much and I will be looking at all of them and weighing them all out. My daughter loves to write....I don't want to do anything to kill that!! You guys are great! Thanks a bunch and I'll keep checking! :)

Melinda
09-19-2009, 01:38 PM
My daughter loves to write....I don't want to do anything to kill that!!

Sue, if your dd loves to write, maybe she'd be interested in Wordsmith Apprentice (http://www.commonsensepress.com/wordsmith/wsapp.htm). I don't know why I didn't add that to my previous reply, but that is what I'm using with my current 4th grader. It covers the mechanics and grammar of writing while working for a "newspaper." It's a fairly inexpensive book, so it may be worth a look. :thumb:

Heather W
09-19-2009, 01:42 PM
This (http://blogshewrote.blogspot.com/2008/06/thoughts-on-grammar.html) is what we do.

mindy in UT.
11-12-2009, 07:59 PM
I use Queen's as well and do like it. I see here that some of you do not add LA. I thought the manual said to add LA (or is it just grammer) and math.
I like Winston Grammer too...and Have used Love To Learns..Journal as was mentioned...great! Not sure why i keep bouncing around..guess I'm just curious.

Am I confused about the FAIR and Byond manuals suggestions for LA??

Robin(CA)
11-12-2009, 09:25 PM
No, the manual only suggests adding a reading/phonics curriculum and math.

ETA: In the back of the vol 3 manual (didn't check the others) it says: ". . . if you are using FIAR with older students, third grade and older, consider adding brief grammar and punctuation lessons." HTH

laurie in ok
11-12-2009, 10:01 PM
We are using Winston Grammar with my fifth grader. It is awesome! It takes less than 10 minutes a day and she is retaining what she is learning. We've tried different things that were gentle and non-time consuming - but she didn't end up remembering any of it. She says her brain isn't sticky. :lol: Anyway - the Winston has been well loved by both of us. It's hand's on - and is simply grammar. She marks three sentences a day in a workbook - the rest is done with cards that she moves around, etc.

Shannon F.
11-13-2009, 09:48 AM
I haven't found that I needed anything for Language Arts besides the FIAR lessons. :thumb:

I have a degree in English with a writing emphasis and the FIAR lessons are very rich and cover a wide variety of skills -- grammar, writing, vocabulary, etc.

Ditto, from another English major! I do often turn Jane's lessons into journal topics. After my son writes his jounal, we correct his grammar/spelling and he makes a "final copy". That is all we have needed thus far. Oh, I did recently get Grammar by the Book from currclick and it is really easy to implement with FIAR if you just want something to work on for grammar. It is simply a set of grammar cards that you can use with any book.

Vicki in MS
11-15-2009, 07:38 AM
We use the free Sheldon's Primary Language lessons from Google books. There is also a Sheldon's Advanced Language Lessons too. Or, if you prefer Serl's version, the Intermediate Language Lessons is free at Google books as well. I just print mine off and have them bound cheaply. I refill my ink cartridges, and bought lots of that $2.50 paper at Walmart back in Sept. You could also just as easily read the lessons from your computer screen, then write out anything you want to teach onto a big dry-erase board. I got a big piece at Home Depot cut into 4 smaller pieces for ~$10.

I include copy work daily from the books we are currently reading, even from our bedtime read-aloud. You wouldn't believe how much grammar is learned just from doing that on a consistent basis. Narration also helps grammar skills.

One more grammar program that is free is the KISS grammar program. You could read those from the screen too. So there's a few options which are very pocketbook friendly.

Hope that helps.

Alice R
11-16-2009, 10:22 AM
I just ordered a whole bunch of stuff from Queen. :hop:

Ya know, I've seen Queen at HSing conventions but I've only seen the Copywork books. I didn't know she had Language Arts books. :eek:

They look perfect for us! I'm hoping they turn out to be perfect. :lol:

Sue C
11-17-2009, 01:03 PM
I went with Queens and I can tell you that for us it IS perfect! My 4th grader is loving it!!! :clap:

Christi in VA
11-17-2009, 01:24 PM
I have used First Language Lessons for 1st and 2nd grade.

kellyds
11-18-2009, 07:18 PM
We use Time4Learning (http://www.time4learning.com). I like to use the math and language just the way the program offers them, because they only take a few minutes a day and then I "know" all of the language concepts are being covered.

For science and social studies, I look at the Time4Learning lesson plans and choose science or social studies lessons to go along with whatever book we are rowing. There's a recommended order, but you can do the lessons in any order you want.

Negin
11-19-2009, 02:39 AM
I've been hesitant to post, since I don't think I'm an expert or anything. Plus, everyone else has made such great suggestions already. Here are some of my thoughts from programs we've tried.

Queens - I loved this program initially. These days, however, we skip much of it. Too much copywork and narration for our liking. I don't even love the copywork or narration choices half the time.
I much, much, much prefer Writing with Ease (http://www.welltrainedmind.com/store/language-arts/writing.html) :clap: I prefer their narration and copywork choices by far.

BTW, this site (http://www.homeschoolreviews.com/) is very helpful for reviewing various programs as well as Cathy Duffy reviews (http://www.cathyduffyreviews.com/)

I liked English for the Thoughtful Child (http://www.amazon.com/English-Thoughtful-Child-Vol-Mary/dp/1882514076/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1258615676&sr=8-1) - similar to Queens. I guess I like these two books even more than Queens. I do think however, that this program is more oriented towards girls than boys.

Wordsmith Apprentice (http://www.amazon.com/Wordsmith-Apprentice-Grades-Directed-Program/dp/B000FIZTM6/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1258615732&sr=1-1) is pretty good. Again, not my favorite. But good. We use most of it. Sometimes, it seems a little disorganized and scattered for my taste.

For vocab, we love Worldly Wise (http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_ss_0_7?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=worldy+wise+3000&sprefix=worldy+) - a very workbook-oriented approach.
and this one (http://www.amazon.com/Vocabulary-Cartoons-Building-Educated-Mnemonics/dp/0965242277/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1258615831&sr=1-2) is lots and lots of fun :D. I do wish that they would have more practice, but this book makes homeschool such fun. We've had lots of laughs from this one.

Once again, so far, we are absolutely loving Writing with Ease (http://www.amazon.com/Complete-Writer-Level-Workbook-Writing/dp/1933339268/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1258615892&sr=1-1) :thumb: :thumb:

Now Writing Tales (http://www.writing-tales.com/) is an absolute delight. I've been using it with dd for several weeks now and am really impressed. A very well-thought-out program, I think. The first level would be quite do-able for a 4th grader. It incorporates teaching how to write in such a gentle but effective way; vocab; and grammar.
This along with WWE would be great for a 4th-grader, I think.

For spelling, we recently started this (http://www.all-about-spelling.com/) and we are loving it. I really believe in this multi-sensory approach. Finally, an effective spelling program! :clap:

That's all I can think of for now ... I think I've overwhelmed you enough. :eek:

Susan A
11-20-2009, 01:15 PM
Queens - I loved this program initially. These days, however, we skip much of it. Too much copywork and narration for our liking. I don't even love the copywork or narration choices half the time.
I much, much, much prefer Writing with Ease (http://www.welltrainedmind.com/store/language-arts/writing.html) :clap: I prefer their narration and copywork choices by far.

Totally agree!!!:)