Getting Ready to Use a Boxed Homeschool Curriculum

getting-ready-use-box-curriculum

We're preparing to start back up in our homeschool in a few weeks. Our curriculum is sitting here in boxes and our homeschool room is going through a slight revamp.  So we can start off with a clean slate.

We use a boxed curriculum and we've been using this curriculum since Kindergarten. Preschool really but since they call it K4 I'll just stick with calling it kindergarten.

The curriculum we use is Bob Jones and they lovingly send along a complete lesson to help me pull it together with little brain activity from me. This is one of the many reasons I love it so.

When it comes to homeschooling there are so many styles and methods to choose from it can be difficult to pick the right one that works for your child and you. For us it's a video based boxed curriculum.

Sometimes I get a few questions about how we like using a boxed curriculum and what would I recommend for someone just starting out.

I realize that jumping into to a boxed curriculum as your first choice when just beginning your homeschool journey actually might not be the best for many people.

It is an investment and since you really need to find what works for your situation it might be a good idea for me to tell you how we came to this decision.

When our daughter was in the those early drawing and crafty days we actually started with Little Hands ToHeavenand Hands Towards Heaven materials to get in the groove.

We really enjoyed these resources and had a great time with them. But as the Sweet Peanut got a teeny bit older I started getting nervous about educating her.  Would I teach everything she needed to know? What if I missed a critical topic? How do I teach her?

I knew I needed some hand holding. Someone to do all the heavy lifting. My sister talked about her success with Abeka and BJU Press curriculums so we decided to start there.

I loved the fact that they had video lessons so we checked out some samples to see the difference and decide.

The Sweet Peanut really enjoyed the sample lessons from Bob Jones and I thought it was definitely worth a try get the full curriculum (for kindergarten).

She loved it, we loved it. And we haven't looked back. Be forewarned that the early years with BJU Press require a lot of cutting and preparation from mom (and dad) but we made it through and if I had it to do over again I would be a little more organized instead of trying to cut everything out the night before.

In fact here are some other things I would recommend if you are leaning towards a boxed curriculum.

  1. Read, read, read. Get to know your curriculum. They realize every family and child is not the same and, at least with Bob Jones, they offer a ton of tips and resources to help you customize your learning day. Read the lesson plans, teachers manual, additional resource, online stuff. Whatever they offer take some time to read through it. They give you everything but the kitchen sink so it's up to you to decide what to use and what you can comfortably omit.
  2. It's okay to customize.  So now you've read your curriculum but you want to change it up a bit. Add something here, skip something there. It's okay. Really, it's okay. Nobody says everything has to come from the box. You can always use other products to supplement or even in place of part of your curriculum.
  3. There will most likely be extra supplies to purchase. Yes you get your curriculum in a box but, at least with BJU, we have to purchase science experiment items, craft items, and stuff for projects separately. We pick up a science kit from Home Science Tools which is invaluable because who wants to stop class to run to the store and pick up the needed items for an experiment? They have kits for several publishers.
  4. Read reviews and talk to others using the same curriculum. You may learn new ways to use the curriculum. Tips you were unaware of. What works. What doesn't.

The beauty of homeschooling is being able to create a customized curriculum for your child. So even though we do use a boxed curriculum we've still been able to create a customized learning plan for our daughter.

Follow along all week the Schoolhouse Review Crew as we blog 5 Days of Homeschool 101.

5 Days of Homeschool 101



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