September 11, 2013

Homeschool Curriculum Review : History

Curriculum Review :  Tapestry of Grace for History

Homeschool Curriculum Review : History

It's what every homeschool mom wants to know.  What curriculum are you using?  We have a few favorites and it's curriculum buying season, so I thought this would be a good time to share what we love about the homeschool curricula that we keep coming back to.  We'll start with history because that's our absolute favorite subject!  And let me point out that I am in now way sponsored by this curriculum.  I simply love it and love to share great finds with my readers!

To make things fun, I thought I'd let the kids tell you how they feel about it first, and then I'll tell you why I can't do without our Tapestry of Grace curriculum.


I didn't feed them any lines for that.  I just interrupted their essay writing on the emperor Huangdi and said, "Come tell everyone why you like or don't like Tapestry of Grace for History/"   

As a mom, I really love this curriculum.  You've heard me talk about it before, and we just can't find anything that comes close in terms of freedom, resources, and support. 

Some of the perks include:
~multiple aged students can study the same topic so that you can have more group instruction time than you would if everyone was on different time periods just because they were in different grades.

~You buy it one year and you actually get that time period for every grade level.  This means that once you've bought 4 years, you own everything you need for history from K-12 and never have to buy again!  We're on our second round through the Year 1 and I'm as happy as ever with it!

~The online community is AMAZING!  There are sponsored forums as well as Yahoo groups started by individuals who are passionate about this curriculum so there are even more ideas for creative ways to use the material than are on their already extensive website.

~Did I mention the website?  You don't have to be a curriculum owner to take advantage of their website, which is packed with activity link, project ideas, field trip suggestions, geography and writing links as related to your history studies.  It's all intuitively laid out, which is refreshing after trying to navigate some of our other curriculum support sites.  


I've checked around the web to see how other people feel about the program and what I find is that most people who have it love it.  The people who don't love it have 2 major complaints.  First, the price feels high.  I will admit that it felt high to me too.  But then I realized that I'm getting 3 years with every purchase, and that eased the chest pains.  It's great enough that we will use it for all three years.  I own Year 1 and Year 3 and I really regret not having used it for Years 2 and 4, trying to save money by using an online public school curriculum.  I am going to buy Year 2 next year, and now I'm only going to get 2 years out of it.  Bummer.  But I've learned my lesson!

The second major complain is that it's overwhelming.  My response to that is that it's a buffet of choices.  You'd never go to a buffet and think Gosh!  I hate having to eat all of this food!  I don't even like liver, but there it is, so I have to eat it.  Man!  I'm never coming back here again.  I'm going to be sick!  If you're not viewing it as a take what you want buffet, you're going to burn out in 3 days flat.  There is just no way on earth you could do it all and still have fun.  Nope.  It's not meant to be exhausted. It's meant to give you the best collection of ideas, teaching resources, and book lists in one place.  

So that's what we love!  Many of our other subjects revolve around our history spine.  Tapestry of Grace helps me tie it all together so that we don't have a stark shift from history to unrelated writing, then on to unrelated reading assignments, and then a random art project.  We immerse ourselves in the culture or period by making everything but math, science, and foreign language relate directly back to history.  It makes for fluid and seamless school days.  

Okay, you're feeling worn out by my enthusiasm for this curriculum.  Sorry.  I promise that none of my other reviews will be this enthusiastic.  I don't love anything quite as much as this when it comes to curriculum.  

2 comments:

  1. We used TOG a few months and really enjoyed it!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Demetria! What do you use now?

      Delete

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