Sometimes you need a fresh start, even in the middle of a school year.
Over the past fourteen years of homeschooling, I’ve developed a particular love for teaching several subjects: Bible, History, and Literature. These three have truly been the highlight of my days, partly because I simply love those subjects myself, but also because we’ve been blessed with curriculum that has woven those subjects together beautifully, and made them all the more enjoyable to teach.
For a time, we adored My Father’s World, our first introduction to multi-level, literature-based homeschooling. If you’ve been hanging around this blog for a while, you may have seen me rave about it before. We loved using it with our kindergarteners all the way through our 8th graders. However, integral into the program is the concept that once students are in high school, they “jump off” the multi-level family studies. My oldest daughter used My Father’s World’s 9th grade program, and it was truly fantastic. However, we found that we missed our times of having the whole family together for a few subjects. These years of homeschooling are so very short, and the “togetherness” of learning is a huge blessing and benefit that I greatly missed with her that year. So, we began a search for a new History program that would allow us to continue to do some studies together as a family.
Enter Diana Waring’s History Revealed. We adored that too, as evidenced by this post and this one. But as much as it filled our need to include the high school students in the family studies, it was not really designed more for children younger than around eleven years old. Over the several years that we used it, I was never quite able to make it work quite as well as I hoped for my younger kids.
While we have been doing fine, and the children have been learning, the desire of my heart was to give my younger children the same sort of education that I had given my older ones at that age. As summer’s end and the new school year approached, I put my foot down and determined that THIS year, I would find a way to balance both My Father’s World AND History Revealed.
I succeeded… for about a week.
After that, a juggling act ensued. Using two core programs was simply not sustainable for me as the teacher. One week, I’d focus on the younger children with My Father’s World, while the older kids would work mainly independently with History Revealed. The following week, the older children would be the priority. A few weeks in, I decided my focus really needed to be on the younger ones, since they needed me more. The older ones did just fine, but being so independent really took a lot of the joy out of the program. Part of the greatness in both My Father’s World and History Revealed, in my mind, is their interactive nature.
I was torn, so I decided to do a bit more research. I looked at other options, and came across a History curriculum that was new and intriguing to me: Biblioplan.
Two things drew me to Biblioplan:
- Bible, History, and Literature are woven together, just as they are with My Father’s World and History Revealed.
- The program can be used for Kindergarten through 12th grade.
It sounded promising right there! After downloading some samples and pouring over as many reviews as I could find, I took the plunge and ordered it. We are now about six weeks into using it, and I am finding it to be a great fit for our family.
Stay tuned for a review of Biblioplan soon, where I will talk about just how Biblioplan works, how our family uses it (truly, lots of flexibility there), and why we love it.