“Not” Back to School 2019-2020

Last year I did a series called “Not” Back to School where we focused on different aspects of Homeschooling including Why we decided to Home school, our curriculum choices, and our home school space. You can find that series here. Today, I’m here to give you an update for this school year. I get asked ALL the time about what curriculum we are using, and since we use a variety of things… not a boxed curriculum – it’s much easier just to put it all in a blog post! I also love sharing the resources and supplies that have become our favorites over the years.

Our printer is probably one that we get asked about the most because we do a lot of printing for our home school. We print some of our entire textbooks and bind them ourselves (with the disk-bound system) so we can’t just have a regular ole printer. We need a work horse. Our laser printer (now we have one with copying and scanning capabilities) is SO worth the price! The toner cartridge lasts us an entire year, and that’s with ALL of the printing that we do! Of course, I’ve linked it below along with all of our other favorites in case you are in the market for one or more of these things.

**This post does contain affiliate links. If you make a purchase through one of these links, I do earn a small commission – at no extra cost to you. Thank you so much for your support! 

Our 2019 – 2020 Curriculum Choices

Layten Bradleigh – (She’ll turn 3 in October; Tot School)
She wants to do everything her big brothers do, including “school” so I decided to start working with her early, and she absolutely LOVES it! Basically it’s just a little planned out, intentional time that I spend with her each day to color and talk about things like letters, sounds, vocabulary development, counting, shapes, colors, etc. I’m not expecting her to master any of this right now, but she does do pretty well with it, even at such a young age.

We are almost finished with these Tot School Printables. This was a free, printable download curriculum which I have used with both Lawson and Linkin. I laminated and saved what I knew I could use again with my next kids, and I’m really glad I thought to do that. It seriously could only take us about five minutes a day, but since she loves it so much we usually spend more time on it. It’s very simple, but this curriculum is awesome and covers all the bases. I recommend it for toddlers Layten’s age, and it would even be great for toddlers that are a little older.

When we finish the Tot School Printables, we are going to move on to Animal ABC’s. This curriculum is a step up from the Tot School Printables. It adds in cutting and pasting skills, journaling/dictation skills, and beginning tracing as we learn about the letters again focusing on different animals each week.

Linkin – (age 5; Kindergarten)
I can’t believe that I now have two children who are old enough to officially be in real school, but here we are! For kindergarten I focus on Reading, Writing, and Math. He will be exposed to much more than that, but these are the only three that I REQUIRE from him at this age.

For Reading & Language Arts, we are finishing up The Good & The Beautiful Level K-Primer Course, and will beginning the Kindergarten Course next. (I did purchase the All About Reading magnetic tiles for him to supplement his learning with for a more hands-on approach. I’ll probably let him use these for spelling/dictation since we already have a separate handwriting course.)

For Handwriting, we are using Handwriting without Tears.

For Math, we are using Math U See. Linkin loves using the math blocks, and he’ll be learning his lessons each week using a DVD. Then, I’ll work with him on his worksheets with his blocks.

Lawson – (age 7; Second Grade)
Lawson will continue in his second-grade level Math course that we did last year since we haven’t completed it just yet. He is actually skipping second grade Language Arts to do the third grade level because he tested well enough to do so. This Language Arts curriculum is pretty intense so we may actually spend two years on this level if we need it. Lawson is adding in a Typing Course this year as well, also from The Good and the Beautiful.

Group Subjects:
While I don’t “require” these subjects for my kindergartener and tot-schooler, I do encourage them to participate. They are more than welcome to do these with us, especially the hands-on activities!

Memory Work: We’ll focus on the poetry from their language arts courses, catechisms focusing on the subject of Prayer first, and our scriptures that go along with our Bible Roadtrip curriculum.

Morning Time Read Aloud: Mom’s Choice (I’ve got a few selected to supplement our Science and History lessons.)

Bible: Bible Roadtrip Level Lower Elementary
For our group learning, I’m focusing on the preschool and kindergarten level. We’ll read the stories in our 365 Great Bible Stories book and do the basic crafts and supplemental activities. Lawson will take things a step further in his own quiet time using the lower elementary level where he will read the stories in his ESV Children’s Bible, answer questions in his notebook  as he learns the important skill of how to study God’s Word.

Apologetics: Who is God? by Apologia
Helping our children to establish a Christian worldview is important to us. This curriculum has been amazing to help us to explain why we believe the things we believe and why we do the things we do as a family and as Christians.

Science: Flying Creatures of the Fifth Day by Apologia
I love that this is a Christian science curriculum, and we especially love the hands-on projects that go along with it.

History:Mystery of History Volume 1
I love that this is a Biblical history curriculum, and I am so excited to do map work and create a timeline book with the kids.

Lawson – CrossFit, Football in the Fall, Baseball in the Spring, Piano & Music Theory Lessons with Mom
Linkin – Kids Cook Real Food (hopefully to be added in soon), Piano & Music Theory Lessons with Mom
Layten – hopefully Dance

Our Favorite Home School Tools & Resources…

  1.  My Happy Planner Teachers’ Edition & Accessories
  2.  Lawson’s Happy Planner Kids’ Edition & Accessories (He used this planner last year, and I wrote his daily homeschool assignments in the weekly spreads. This year, I’ve made him a checklist that we print off each week, which includes his daily chores, his assignments, and his grades.)
  3.  Our Pencil Sharpener
  4.  Our Favorite Pencils
  5. Frixion Erasable Colored Pens
  6. Frixion Erasable Colored Highlighters
  7. Erasable Colored Pencils
  8. Our “New” Favorite Watercolors
  9. Disc-bound Covers (We use these with our printable curriculum.)
  10. Metal Discs (We use these with our printable curriculum.)
    **I like this option better than bulky binders or having the pages bound because the spirals always seemed to come undone throughout the year which would drive me nuts. This way we have the customizable flexibility of a binder by easily being able to take pages in and out and also the ability to flip it around like a spiral-bound book. It’s the best of both worlds, in my opinion.
  11. Laminator
  12. Dry Erase Markers
  13. Wet Erase Markers
  14. Printer
  15. Label Maker
  16. ESV Children’s Bible
  17. 365 Great Bible Stories
  18. 66 Books One Story
  19. Window on the World
  20. Large Notebook (We use this for note-taking in our group subjects or in anything we’d use a chalk or white board for, except we get to keep it and refer back to it if we need to.)
  21. Spelling Power Student Record Book (This has been a game changer for our spelling lessons this year!)
  22. The Homeschool History Book of Centuries
  23. Rand McNally Historical Atlas of the World
  24. The Student Bible Atlas
  25. Amazon Kindle Fire Tablets
  26. Wooden Easel (We originally purchased this for Typing, but we use it for so much more than that actually! I love to display a book we’ll be reading or something fun like that.)
  27. Jelly Telly App
  28. Teaching from Rest Book
  29. The Same Page Podcast (Great for car rides with your kids- even for non-homeschoolers!)
  30. Your Morning Basket Podcast
  31. The Homeschool Solutions Show Podcast
  32. The Homeschool Sanity Show
  33. Raising Arrows Podcast


Our Home School Wish-List:

Just ask any teacher out there… every single one will have a wish list. Whether it’s written down or just in their head, there’s always something else we’d like to add – whether supplies or resources. We prioritize the most-important things. These things haven’t made the cut… yet. (This is more of just a reference for me to have and come back to when I’m looking for ideas.)

Who Was… Book Sets
Kids Cook Real Food
Preschool Fall Video Art Lessons
Fall Video Chalk Art Lessons
Classical Collection History Art Lessons
Hymns Video Art Lessons
Illustrated Nature Journaling
Nature Study Hacking
LovEvery PlayKits: Lyndon
Panda Crate: Lyndon
Koala Crate: Layten
Kiwi Crate: Linkin
Tinker Crate: Lawson
Larger Set of Chalk Pastels with More Color Options

What else would you like to see?!

Our Homeschool Space for this year (How we Homeschool WITHOUT a dedicated homeschool room), My Homeschool Planner, or maybe my Homeschool Planning Process (it’s changed a lot this year!)? Let me know in the comments!

I'd love to hear from you!