October 2, 2009

Decision Making Time

Ok, so lots of prayer and consideration and I have finally received my answer: return to AO/HEO for the remaining two years of high school. My son has done well with this approach, but I have struggled using it. Mostly, this has been my thwarted attempts at creating the perfect curriculum. I have wanted only the best for my son, but in doing so, have allowed my own desires to drive me away from what was working, into something that had haphazard success. I finally realize that no curriculum is best -- just the one that works well and gets the job done.

My plans for this year are to continue to read Y11 (Modern History). We are out of sequence, but that is OK. We will simply finish up this year, reading as much as we can about 1900-2000. Next year, we will pick up Y10 and study 1800-1900, covering the Civil War and Reconstruction eras. It will work fine and will give us a complete study of history from antiquities to the modern period. We will toss in Government and Economics, to finish off those courses, but other than that, we will do the program pretty much as written.

My other struggle has been with Math. I am co-moderator for the MEP-Homeschoolers group at Yahoo, and have used this math with my son for the past couple years. We have gone as far with it as possible, so we are switching over to Thinkwell's online courses for Precalculus and Calculus. I dangled Saxon around for awhile, but think that Thinkwell is the more interesting choice.

Lastly, at some point we need to address Science again. We have chosen to use a mish-mash of curriculum and as a result don't really have a thorough background in any one science. My son doesn't plan on studying science, but still it would be better for him to have a bit more grounding. I am not sure what to do for science, so this year we are continuing to use my college Geology text along with the Annenberg Project's video series called "The Earth." Next year, we might do something with Astronomy or Meterology. I am not sure. I will have to see if there are any videos online at http://www.learner.org/ that would work for us.

Update: May 25, 2010

I thought I would write a short update to this post. A lot has happened since I first wrote this, and I have made my decision regarding my son's schooling. At the time of this post, I was in the midst of working through counseling with my husband, hoping to restore my marriage. I was also unsure whether or not we would home school for 12th grade or whether our son would start some college courses.

After the ensuing months, the decision has been made to graduate him from home school high school. He is, for all intents and purposes, done with high school. Our core curriculum has been college-level in scope and he has read enough of each subject for more than a single credit. It seems silly to hold him back, especially in the areas of his chosen field.

He is determined to study music in college and has been taking college-prep type music theory courses. He is ready for college classes in theory and composition, and is also ready for piano instruction at this level. It is just a matter of getting him enrolled and then figuring out how to get him to school each day. He still doesn't have his license so that means he will have to take a bus or get a ride with some one. Details, details, details...all yet to be filled in. I am confident in this decision, it is really for the best, so that is what will be.

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