Curricula 2017-2018 - 9th Grade - Aedan

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

It's time for a new school year! Things have been quiet around here because I really tried to put school to rest as much as I could during the summer. We have enjoyed lots of time with friends and family as well as a great family trip and lots of little road trips. I think we are almost ready to put aside rest and get back to work. There's something about getting back into a routine that is a welcome rest from summer activities.

It felt like high school was so far away when we first started our homeschool journey. It's hard to believe my firstborn is a high school freshman, but he is. It's such a bittersweet thing. As I considered what to do for his first high school year I knew that we would continue on with Heart of Dakota. I don't know for sure if we will use HOD for the rest of our high school year, but this was one guide I really didn't want to miss. I had almost decided to not share what we were doing this year, but I am putting it out there so I can remember someday.

This year will be using HOD World Geography which covers the Geography, Culture, and Religions of the world. I am thrilled for Aedan to get to know his world from a biblical worldview. These are the resources that will cover the geography aspect of the program. There are videos and books that describe the exploration of the globe from the beginning of time. He will also learn to draw maps to more familiarize himself with the places of the world. As always, there are beautiful HOD notebook pages that go with each program that Aedan will complete as he goes through the program this year.

These are the World Religion and Cultures resources. I can't wait to discuss these books with Aedan. I've read many of them through the summer, and they are fantastic! I love that we will learn about world religions through autobiographies and biographies. These stories are incredibly inspiring and really show what cost others pay in other parts of the world who bravely pursue and share Christ in hostile lands.

Heart of Dakota elementary and middle school guides include storytime books. In the high school guides there is instead a "Living Library." These books are intended to be read independently rather than aloud and are for extra credit. I don't think we will get through them all, but I got them just in case our day had time to include them. They are meant to flesh out where we are in the world during our geography studies.

For the last few years I have added Simply Charlotte Mason's Visits series to our year. We have always enjoyed HOD geography, but I was starting to see that Aedan needed a little more help in identifying countries and cities in the world. Silas will also continue to do this series as well. It's only done once a week, but by the end of the year they are able to identify all the countries in the continent you study. If you know me, you'll know we will also be enjoying much Asian food this year for fun!

I decided to stick with Rod & Staff Grammar. HOD schedules books 5-8 from around 5th-12th grade. If you follow HOD's schedule you can expect to finish half a book a year. Even though the book says English 7 it is very advanced. Last year we took a break from R&S, but we returned to it and decided that it really was the best choice for us at least for now. Aedan will also work through Essentials in Writing 10 this year. We have never used this program, but I'm hoping it will be easy enough to implement.

You may have seen my Lightning Lit reviews. This year we will pick and choose from these two American guides. We will also use Teaching the Classics  to discuss other books I want him to get the chance to read.

If you've been around here lately you'll know I'm a huge Brave Writer fan. If all else fails I always fall back on the Brave Writer lifestyle. Someday I need to write an Ode to Brave Writer to share why this company has changed my thinking about writing, homeschool, and even parenting.

This year we will use Apologia Biology for science. It took me a while to come to this decision, but I finally settled on a trusted old standby for us. I shared here why I chose this program.

We will also supplement Apologia with Biology 101. This program can be used as a full credit, but this year we will just watch the videos. I plan to possibly use Physics 101 in the future more fully.

We will continue with Math U See for Algebra. I am so thankful for a doable math that has not only helped Aedan but also myself with understanding how math works.

HOD World Geography also schedules a half credit of Logic. These are great books! I look forward to studying logic with the resident debater of the house. These are the resources we will use this year.

We will use Getting Started with Spanish for a half credit of Spanish. I played with the idea of doing a more challenging program, but decided to go ahead and do a quick intro and possibly have him take a Spanish course at a co-op next year.

I struggled with whether or not to include the Bible credit that was scheduled this year. Rooted & Grounded is a wonderful course, but I was starting to think if he had to do Bible study that he wouldn't want to do it. I decided to take it at our pace, not really counting it as credit, and see how it goes. We will be doing a family Bible time, but this will give him a chance to hear the word on his own this year. I am prayerfully playing it by ear, in other words.

Practical Happiness is scheduled once a week. Folks, the books by this author are absolutely wonderful if you have young men in your life. Don't miss these books!

 Art is a big part of this kid's life. We will work through Artistic Pursuits Book 1 and Book 2 over the next few years to give him everyday practice and to learn to see art in new ways.

We are starting to think about ACT and SAT prep. How did that happen!? I picked up these vocabulary cards. We will cycle through these throughout the year.

That about wraps it up! Of course if you've been a homeschooler for a while you know well-laid plans can look very different at the end of the year from how they appeared in the beginning. Humbly I ask the Lord to help us accomplish what He gives us the grace to complete. Mostly I pray that God will make me into the kind of mom and teacher that inspires not only a love of learning but mostly a love for Him. I pray He also grants you the same for your year too!


  1. Love the photos! How exciting to have a highschooler---an nerve-wracking!

    1. You have paved the way! I'm so thankful for those ahead of me, and especially your schedule help!

  2. Look at all those books! 😍 I'm ready to get back to a routine, too. I think school will be more restful than our summer has been! I hope you have a wonderful year of learning and a great first year of high school!

    1. I'm glad I'm not the only one tired enough to (want) to go back to school! I'm so thankful to live in a place with seasons that give us an excuse to slow down.

  3. I just popper over to see how you set up World Geography. We'll be starting it shortly with our eldest too. ;) He's doing French instead of Spanish though. I was debating the Lightning Lit, but opted to just give the BJU a try.. Eeks!

    1. It seems like the people who chose to do BJU were pleased with it. It sounds like it will give a really strong foundation for lit. I never got around to doing a set up post for WG - just didn't have it in me. I hope you have a great start in WG!

  4. Your oldest is a year ahead of my oldest, so I always check out what you're doing to know what's ahead for us. I'm interested in the ACT/SAT vocab cards you found. I've never seen those, where'd you find them? They look like something we'd want to use.


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