Mid-Year Homeschool Curriculum Changes and Additions

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{disclaimer ~ affiliate links are used below}

At times a mid-year change in homeschool curriculum is needed {or desired}. I try not to change things mid-year too often, but I am not scared to ditch something and go for something new if it is needed. Below you can read more about some changes we made with our 4th and 7th grader!

4th Grade

From Carson Dellosa Skill Builders Reading Comprehension to Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Reading Comprehension

Homeschool Curriculum Changes

This was for my daughter who is in 4th grade. She used the Houghton Mifflin book{on the right} for 2nd and 3rd grade and on a whim I ordered her a different brand for 4th grade. She does NOT like the new one, so we switched back. Ironically, the old one {now the current one – her choice} has MUCH more work to do. She is my reader and likes the layout better. I accidentally ordered 5th grade instead of 4th, but we decided to use it anyway!

Finished Growing with Grammar, switched to Fix It Grammar

Homeschool Curriculum Changes-3

Also for my 4th grader – she finished Growing with Grammar 3 {which we didn’t finish last year} and I planned on moving on to GWG 4. However, IEW offered Fix It Grammar for FREE during their 12 Days of Giving so I decided to give it a try!! I do love Growing with Grammar and so far love Fix It Grammar. TOTALLY different ways to teach grammar. I have no idea which one I will choose for next year!

Finished IEW Bible Heroes, added IEW SWI B

My 4th grader finished up IEW’s Bible Heroes and I had planned to move on to IEW’s All Things Fun and Fascinating with her. After much thought over Christmas break I changed my plan and decided to use IEW SWI level B with BOTH of my kids this semester! So far so good and we are 4 weeks in, take a peek at them working here on Instagram!

 

7th Grade

From LIFEPAC Language Arts to IEW Fix It Grammar and SWI B

Homeschool Curriculum Changes-2

This change was for my 7th grade son. We gave LIFEPAC Language Arts a shot and neither of us prefer it. It isn’t a bad curriculum at all and if he had been using it for many years perhaps it would have worked. It was too random for him, he likes the structure of former language arts programs better {Growing with Grammar, Spectrum Vocabulary, etc}.

Knowing we needed a change, I decided to go to all IEW for him. Since we got Fix It Grammar for free, I am using that with him and so far he LOVES it. As I mentioned above, I am using IEW SWI B for him. Level B is the perfect level for him, it is a bit challenging for her, but we make it work.

In addition to grammar and writing/vocabulary we are focusing on our reading together more. There is one unit from the LIFEPAC Language Arts I do plan to use as it is a literature guide to go along with the book The Hiding Place. We just aren’t planning to finish the rest of the booklets.


See our original 4th and 7th Grade Homeschool Curriculum posts by clicking below! See all of our grade levels here!

4th Grade Homeschool Curriculum Choices L   7th Grace Homeschool Curriculum Choices K

Homeschool Curriculum Reviews and Choices



Masterpiece Society Studio ~ Art for Homeschoolers!

Masterpiece Society Art Lessons Online

{disclaimer ~ we were given a studio membership and affiliate links are used in this post}

Masterpiece Society Studio is a homeschool art membership site in which you can have access to ALL the courses created for kids and teens – hundreds of lessons – at any time of the year, day or night – without having to plan a single one!

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Who is This Membership Site For?


  • Moms who want to create beautiful art and lasting memories with their kids.
  • Homeschooling families who want a quality art education for ALL of their children
  • Families who want to encourage and inspire creativity in all their children
  • Parents who want honor each of their children’s individual gifts and creativity
  • Parents who need more inspiration for their artsy kids
  • Single-income families who can’t afford private lessons for each of their children
  • Single-income families who don’t want to purchase every art course by the Masterpiece Society
  • Families who want a “little something for everyone” (PreK coloring pages, K-2 step-by-step drawing lessons, art courses for older kids & teens, monthly “create & connect” club with projects designed especially for moms.)


Our Personal Experience

We began using lessons from Masterpiece Society Studio this year and have loved our experience so far. I have struggled in the past with art and decided to do projects with my 9 year old daughter this year! I figured it could be a fun time of bonding once a week and so far we have both loved this!

We set up the video lessons on the iPad and prop it up near us so we can easily pause during the lesson. Alisha makes it so easy to follow along!

Masterpiece Society Art Turtle project (1 of 4)

Our first project came from the Playful Pets Portraits. You can buy the specific courses separately but they are ALL included with the membership! Below you can see our watercolor turtles!

Masterpiece Society Art Turtle project (4 of 4) PPP-Collage-600

Another project we enjoyed was the Wildflowers from the Celebrate Summer lessons. She was hesitant to do something different {she often is} but really enjoyed learning the new techniques presented in this lesson! I did too! You can see my work in progress taped next to hers on the MessMatz <—great tool for messy art projects.

Masterpiece Society Studio Art (3 of 4)

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Our current project is also from the Playful Pets Portrait course also. She LOVES animals, so I knew she would love this one. This lesson focused on painting a realistic cat on a negative space background. She is still working on the final project, be sure to follow along on Instagram to see more!

Masterpiece Society Studio Art (5 of 1)


Studying Artists

Mixing with the Masters has been the main source of our artist study. Alisha has created short videos sharing about each artist as well as a simple PDF download {you can see it on the table in front of my daughter in the photo below} so we can easily create a notebook adding pages as we learn about each artist. There are art projects included also but we aren’t doing those right now. We are using this area to give her a brief exposure to famous artists.

There are currently two Mixing with the Masters courses, which can be bought individually but are INCLUDED with a studio membership!

Masterpiece Society Studio Art (2 of 4) Masterpiece Society Studio Art (1 of 4)

Exclusive MS Content

The art courses, exclusive member content, and resources within are currently valued at $1,968 (with MUCH more coming in 2019).

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But now, you can bring art, beauty, and creativity to your kids with a membership to Masterpiece Society Studio for a small monthly or yearly investment!

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Studio Membership is Closing September 30th!


Don’t miss out on this fabulous homeschool art resource. Doors  to the Masterpiece Society STUDIO {membership area} are closing on September 30th, and won’t re-open again until spring of next year. Register today and get locked into the 2018 price!

You can always buy individual courses in the shop, the full access membership area is closing at the end of September 2018.

Studio Membership Information Here

See Individual Art Courses Here



Art in Our Homeschool

Art in our Homeschool

Ahh, art. A subject I shy away from but a subject my daughter loves.

My daughter’s interest in art has grown over time and this year I really wanted to dive in and make this a core part of our homeschool. Not just random art projects, but also studying artists.

My daughter is in 4th grade and although she loves art she doesn’t always love my ideas, so this isn’t going to be smooth sailing all of the time. But, I want to challenge her to think outside of her comfort zone and current interests.

I have a few resources I am using, and honestly creating what works for us one week at a time. I don’t have a grand plan – I tend to get too overwhelmed, just a road ahead guided loosely by two main ideas. I want to expose her to artists and their work – in a fun and natural way, and I want her to create fun art!

I am not connecting the two since I know that too would overwhelm me. I admire those of you who really get into art with your homeschool kids, but this simple plan is a huge stretch for me. I am sharing my plans since I know there are many other homeschool moms out there like me.

{disclaimer – some links below are affiliate}

Resources We Are Using

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Print   Print

famous-artists-1-square    FreeSchool Famous Artist Playlist

Artist Books (1 of 1)

The Weekly Plan

I have art scheduled on two days of the week for us and am leaving plenty of time for us to not feel rushed. On one day we are doing our artist study, with whatever resources I choose from the sources listed above. If I have a lot of time to plan it might be elaborate. If I don’t have a lot of planning time, we might read a book and watch a video. I am leaving myself lots of wiggle room so I don’t get overwhelmed and just give up.

To begin our artist study, we went with Michelangelo, and read books, watched a few videos and learned as much as we could without a major plan. Nothing to overwhelmingly special – but more than I have done before, so it’s a win!

Masterpiece Society Art Turtle project (1 of 1)

On the other day, we will be doing an art project together. Some I will let her choose and others I will plan for us {that’s the ‘pull her out of her comfort zone’ part of this}. Most of the art projects we do will come from our Masterpiece Society membership.

For our first week of homeschool, I planned a project I knew she would love since she prefers watercolor painting and she loves animals. In the photos below you can see the iPad set up with the example. There’s a video lesson and the graphic of the project for inspiration. This specific project was from the Playful Pet Portrait set, which is included with a studio membership, or can be purchased separately.

 Masterpiece Society Art Turtle project (1 of 4)

Masterpiece Society Art Turtle project (2 of 4)

Her finished turtle, I LOVE it!

Masterpiece Society Art Turtle project (3 of 4)

I made one too! I love how ours are so different. We had a LOT of fun painting together and I think that will be a game changer this year.

Masterpiece Society Art Turtle project (4 of 4)

I am sharing much more on my Instagram account now, it is becoming more of a mini-blog, so be sure to follow us over there to see more art projects and more of our homeschool in general.

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4th Grade Homeschool Curriculum Choices

4th Grade Homeschool Curriculum Choices L

My daughter is 9 and going into 4th grade this year. Below are the 4th grade homeschool curriculum choices we have made for Ladybug! Changes may come, but this is the plan for now!

Curious to see what she did in the past?

{disclaimer ~ affiliate links are used below}

4th Grade Subjects

We will not be doing all of these every day. Follow along with us and I will share throughout the year so you can see how it all fits in! Honestly I had a VERY hard time deciding on a few of these and may end up changing my mind. The joy of homeschool – I can!

The Visual Version

TT Math 5AAS 4lifepac_3-5_historyboxSpectrum Vocabulary 4 gwg4wrk_720x KCRF-Pinterest-1

IEW Bible HeroesIEW Fun and Fascinating

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Art in our Homeschool

4th Grade Reading Book List (1 of 1)


Homeschool Curriculum Reviews and Choices

Stick around and see our homeschool year unfold!

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4th Grade Reading List

4th Grade Reading List

This will be our third year using visual reading lists! Today I am sharing my daughter’s 4th grade reading list. She is my bookworm, and veers from the list often. I still created a list for her so we would have ideas throughout the year just in case!

4th Grade Reading Book List (1 of 1)     

I used many sources to find books I thought she might enjoy and that I wanted her to try. I have not read all of these, but looked at reviews and am comfortable with giving these a try. After deciding on many book choices for her, I created a page with each cover so she can browse and choose his next book easily. We do not own all of these so I have her choose and I put the book on hold at the library!

Some of the books carried over since she didn’t choose them last year. I removed most of what she didn’t choose but left a few I am hoping she will pick this year!

4th Grade Book Checklist

Below you can see Amazon links to all of the books on this list {click over to the blog if you are reading in email}.

Downloads…

I have a few downloads you are welcome to use if you’d like. First, here is a copy of the book choice page featuring the books I chose for her. If you want to create your own visual list, it is easy!  Just grab the book cover images online somewhere {I used Amazon} and then copy them into a document and resize how you want!  I use PowerPoint to create my documents, I like their positioning tools the best.

Here is a blank reading record like his. I just have her write the title, author and rate the book 1-10 based on her opinion.

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Here’s another reading log we have used.  It is very similar to the one we are using now.

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See our Book Lists Pinterest board here!

Booklist Video…

I recently did a Facebook Live video sharing about these visual booklists, and why we love them! You can watch that here!

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More Book Lists

7th Grade Book Checklist  6th Grade Book List 

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2nd-Grade-Homeschool-Reading-Plan4  1st-Grade-Library-Book-Favorites5