Friday, February 11, 2011

Are you a curriculum junkie?

Are you looking for one magic product that's going to solve all your homeschooling problems?
Do you have a lot of stuff you thought you'd use and didn't but that you're still hanging onto?
Or, on the other hand--do you have the fullest table every year at the used curriculum swap?

Books and Bairns wants to know...and she has links to some other online discussion on this topic.

As for, not junkies here.  Book lovers, yes...but, if anything, I tend to be under-interested in more "packaged" homeschool materials.  Partly because I can't afford to jump onto any curriculum bandwagon that's going to require more than a few dollars' output...that may mean that we miss out on some great but pricey stuff, but that's just the way things are.  Also because you can come up with a lot of your own great ideas by using books such as Ruth Beechick's 4-8 guide...and that does save on bubblewrap.

But even if something's cheap or free...well, I might try it out, and I have (otherwise I would never have signed on for the year of Review Crew), but generally I already know what has worked well for us and where we're headed, so I'm cautious about making big changes even with free stuff.  Knowing that Ambleside Online gives us year-by-year direction has been a huge blessing to us over the past decade--and has kept me out of many curriculum rabbit trails.  As for the subjects not directly covered by AO--math, languages, extra science--we've taken it year by year and switched mainly when we ran out of levels (Miquon Math).

What's your junkie status?

(Related post: Is there a homeschool store in your cupboard?)


At Home on the Rock... said...

Not too bad here. We've used the same books for all three of our children. There has been one or two purchaes that didn't work out...but all in all not too bad.

JC said...

I purchased a few curriculum bombs during the first year or two but for the most part now I do very well with my shopping. I really prefer to get my hands on the books before I buy so homeschool conferences are a must.

I had several favourite curriculums that served us well through the elementary grades but found it much more difficult to settle on high school curriculum.

Melissa said...

I don't think I was ever a junkie...but at one time I did put too much hope into boxed-curriculum. I quickly discovered any and every thing was going to get a good tweaking from me so that it would work with me and my guys. Once we morphed into more of a Charlotte Mason type education, the less "stuff" we needed. With confidence, comes less of a desire to try the newest, latest my humble opinion!