Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Getting It All In

In years past I ALWAYS had unused curriculum at the end of every school year. Throughout the season I just couldn’t refuse all the neat homeschooling resources, especially at homeschool conventions. Can I get an amen on that one?
The last several years our homeschooling has evolved into what I call semi-eclectic unschooling. My daughter uses Time4Learing High School courses (not on a daily basis due to data restrictions) and the rest of her schooling is whatever she is interested in learning more about. She loves the video lessons at T4L, just wish our Internet wasn’t satellite…hate, hate, hate the limits on data usage! 
Using an online curriculum means no wasted resources or $$$. I don’t have to try to sell stuff at the used homeschool book fair or on swap boards anymore. Smile The bulk of my daughter’s delight directed learning is Internet based as well, so I cut out soooo much waste from the homeschool budget. We put that money to good use--books! She loves to read.
I do have one tip for those of you who are looking for ways to organize all your homeschool resources, especially online resources. I have been using a site called Springpad. It is free to use. I even keep things like recipes there. You set up virtual notebooks, task lists… You can follow other notebooks, have people collaborate with you on notebooks and more. I love that if I see something I want to store in a notebook, I just email it and the whole page is there for me. You can store homeschooling sites or just specific pages. Here’s an example.
To sum this all up, using an online curriculum and letting her choose what she wants to study means we definitely do get it all in. How about you?

11 comments:

  1. Great post! It is helpful to hear how you liked Time4Learning. Many of the families that I work with use and love it!

    Betsy, homeschool consultant at BJ's Homeschool

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    1. Thanks for stopping by, Betsy! We are big, well really, huge T4L fans.

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  2. I'm not that brave to allow my high schoolers to do interest led learning. We definitely follow a more traditional track. Thanks for introducing the online notebooks. Neat resource

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    1. Sherrie, I wasn't brave at all in the beginning and I still have days where I second guess our choice. However, she is thriving and happy.

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  3. Hopped over from the blog hop. Thanks for the links to resources. I always keep my eyes open for good homeschool stuff.

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    1. You are very welcome. Springpad has a bit of a learning curve, but all-in-all, it's a great site to organize and share things.

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  4. Totally agree with you on the online curriculum thing! We too use online resources and have not only cut back on the amount of money we spend, but we freed up SO MUCH space in our home. We went from 3 cabinets of supplies and textbooks/workbooks to just 1 cabinet of supplies (art, science, etc). It's great! :)

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    1. Hi Katie! Yes, using an online curriculum has freed up lots of room in our house too. That is one of my fave things. :) It also freed up lots of time for us, especially me. I don't spend hours on lesson planning.

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  5. I'm so attached to most of our books, I don't know if I could get rid of them. But, I suppose the day is coming that we won't need them anymore.

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    1. Hi Karen,

      I held on to our books forever. Finally I started getting rid of them in sales and donating. I felt better after I did. The pile of stuff was HUGE. The money from the sales was nice.

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  6. I like their High School options. It seems that they used some of the Thinkwell videos my dd loves for their math. Although their testing is different. My dd had an issue with the video to coursework differences. Also, she is a book lover and wants a book to go with her coursework with pretty pictures etc. We've used Time4Learning in the past as a supplement and will use it again for High school subjects like statistics etc. We use Abeka DVD/Streaming which gives my dd both the visual learning with books. Also YouthDigital.com and Teaching Textbooks as a Lab to her Abeka Math.

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