As a Catholic family, it’s important to us that we have good resources for our children that highlight our faith. There are many Catholic books out there, but these are a few of our favorites right now.
We homeschooled over the summer so we are almost finished with our Charlotte Mason Year 2 Term 1, but I thought I would share with you what we have used for this term. We use Ambleside Online with a Catholic twist. I have added and subtracted a few things to make them more fitting to our faith and have really loved the way it has been working for our family. Here’s a peek into our curriculum.
As you probably know, we homeschool year round. So planning and organizing our homeschool for the year, begins around Christmas. This allows me to plan the entire next year and be ready to begin it when we finish the previous year.
Basically, over the Christmas holiday when my hubby is home a bit more and there are more down days, I take a few days to focus on the next year’s schedule. This year we were in the middle of Year One of Ambleside Online and so I was scheduling out my Year Two of Ambleside Online over the break.
Why we Homeschool During the Summer…
We need structure.
Our family works so much better with a set daily structure. In order to make this easier on us all, we continue to do school throughout the summer.
I can’t believe it, we finished our second year of homeschooling last Friday!
The kids and I are ready for a little break and I feel like we accomplished a lot over the last year.
We started the year with lessons of mostly workbook activities. The kids were not loving school time and were getting extremely frustrated with the amount of workbooks we were using. I felt something wasn’t working and so I started rethinking our plan. I had been feeling a call to use Charlotte Mason’s ideas especially the living books more. And after researching, reading and praying, we made the switch to Ambleside Online after Christmas. I used our Christmas break to rework the schedule for Year One so we could fit it into the last 4 months of our year and be able to start Year Two over the summer (slowly) so that we would get to Year Three sometime next year and be caught up at Year four the following year. Fitting Year One into a few months was a lot of work, but the living books were amazing and the kids were always asking for more which was in complete contrast to the previous few months.
Here is a look at what we used in our second year (first/second grade).
Horizons (First Grade – Mister Man, Second Grade – Little Miss) – beginning of the year
Math-U-See – (Beta) – Second half of the year – this change proved to be one of the best decisions I had made. Mister Man was excelling at math and Sunshine was struggling, so I pulled Sunshine back to help her grasp the concepts better and Mister Man kept excelling. A few weeks after the switch, Sunshine started loving math and was excelling as well! I am so very glad I decided to make this switch!
Mystery of History – Volume 2 – This just wasn’t working for us.
Story of the World – Volume 2 – Better but still not what I was looking for.
- Our Island Story – Marshall
- Fifty Famous Stories Retold – Baldwin
- Viking Tales – Hall
- Lief the Lucky – D’Aulaire
- Benjamin Franklin – D’Aulaire
- George Washington – D’Aulaire
- Buffalo Bill – D’Aulaire
- Pocahontas – D’Aulaire
Burgess Bird Book – Loved this book!!!!
Apologia Exploring Creation – Flying Creatures of the Third Day– This was a great reference for the Burgess Bird Book.
Northeast Study – We went through the states in the Northeast one by one, reading books about each, eating their famous food and locating them on a map.
Paddle to the Sea – We read this and loved it! As we read we mapped Paddle’s journey from Canada, through the Great Lakes and down the St. Lawrence River eventually to France.
First Language Lessons – (Level 1 – Mister Man, Level 2 – Sunshine)
Copywork (Bible Verse and from readings)
Redwall (AudioBook – from the library)
A Child’s Garden of Verses – Robert Louis Stevenson
When We Were Very Young – A. A. Milne
Now We Are Six – A. A. Milne
Art – Picture Study/Artist Study
Art – Drawing/Process
Artistic Pursuits – Book One – Review Coming Soon
Music – Artist Study