Last year (SY 08-09), after we finished one complete history cycle (from ancients to modern) using the Story of the World and Sonlight, we switched to Tapestry of Grace (TOG). It was at this time that our third child joined us officially. This past year, our older girls delved into TOG Year 1 (History of Redemption) at the dialectic level while their younger brother used books in the lower grammar level. TOG is so much more work but my older girls were ready for the challenge. They have done more reading, composition, projects and hands-on crafts using this curricula. I love TOG Year 1 for it’s Bible survey component…something I wish to go back to and study more in depth when I have more time.
Like science, it took a lot of trying out curricula for us before we found TOG’s Writing Aids and TOG’s writing component which has helped my girls write more and help me guide them. For writing or composition, we have tried Writing Strands (w/c my girls did not really like), looked into Institute of Excellence in Writing (our homeschool support group had the DVD set in their library) but it did not fit my style, Bravewriter’s The Writer’s Jungle (w/c is more a reference material and a very good resource for teaching writing…something I will be keeping in our shelf). For now, I’ve come to the conclusion that we can’t really “teach” writing per se but we can equip our kids with the tools that will enable them to write well and inspire them to JUST WRITE…or maybe I haven’t discovered the program that will help me teach writing yet.
Next year, we are looking forward to using TOG Year 2 (middle ages through renaissance), our fourth child joining us for Kindergarten, and our journey continuing on. We are somewhat relocating again so I am sure there will be changes along the way.