Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Our Year with Tapestry of Grace

Are you Considering Homeschooling?  This is one of many articles I have written about selecting a curriculum.  Please feel free to read about The Early Years, The Sonlight Year, Writers' Workshop, or Science Choices, too.

If you read about Our Time with Veritas Press, you already know that the thought of managing two separate Omnibus studies had me searching for a brown paper bag to breathe into.  Because Orville was in his last year of elementary level studies, I wanted to use this year to "experiment" with other curricula and try to find what we would use for the middle and high school years.

TOG appealed to me for a number of reasons:
  1. All children in the family study the same time period.
  2. Instruction is leveled so that the younger children read books on their level and consider aspects of the time period more appropriate for them while the older children dig a little deeper into the study of the period.
  3. History, literature, Bible and or church history, worldview, art/music appreciation, and geography are integrated.  This is actually my favorite aspect of TOG. 
  4. There are a number of hands-on and project suggestions.  Many of the suggestions provide a living-history experience, rather than just something hands-on for the sake of being hands-on, if you know what I mean.
  5. Writing assignments are included, and Writing Aids provides rubric grading.
On all of the above, I give TOG an A+ and recommend it as a curriculum to consider for your family, particularly if you have a large family and if the study of history is a high priority in your goals for your home school.

We will not continue with TOG, however, for two reasons:
  1. One of my sons had real difficulty with TOG.  I believe it is because he processes information differently from how TOG presents it.  TOG involves reading from a number of sources and piecing information together to get the big picture.  My son needs the big picture first, and then if there is time and interest, we work on the details. 
  2. The same son is not a history lover.  Completing TOG takes a big chunk of the school day.  Michael and I have decided that we are not going to force him to devote that much of his education to the humanities.  He is a math and science man, likely to have a career in a math/science related field, and we need to provide more for him in those fields of study.  That is not to say he will not be a student of history, geography, etc.  TOG just offers more than we need.
With that said, our other son, who is the polar opposite of his brother, LOVED TOG.  He is a historian.  He could read and discuss church history, theology, worldview, etc. ALL-DAY-LONG.  And we have a plan that I will share in a later post on how we intend to provide the humanities-rich education that he needs while providing the science-math son what he needs.  If you have read this series from the start, the answer will make you laugh!   All in all, we have decided that as much as the one son loved TOG, it is not the best curriculum for our circumstances, and we will make some changes next year.

Three more posts, and this series will be done!  Return soon for suggestions for including music in your school day and for teaching foreign language.  Then I will end with The Plan for Next Year!!

Happy Curriculum Hunting!

Disclosure:  I am a Lampstand Press affiliate and will receive a commission on any purchases that result from following the links to their site that I provided in this post or elsewhere on this blog.  I have not been compensated for this article and have offered my honest opinion.


Tristan said...

I'm looking forward to reading your plans for next year - this has been a fun series to read!

argsmommy said...

Interesting how TOG didn't work out. Your reviews are always so helpful.

Kathleen said...

Love how well you know your boys! I'm enjoying this series.