It's no secret, I am not shy about it at all. I absolutely love Queen Homeschool Curriculum (Queens for the rest of this blog). Its a Charlotte Mason style Curric. but in a user friendly "textbook" form. I could gush about Queens all day but here are the top 10 reasons why I LOVE it!!!
1) It's so easy to use. all of their stuff has about the same format. Either 180 lessons; one for each day of a school year, or by week; 35 weeks for a full school year and there is one lesson within those weeks per school day. So its the same but laid out slightly different. This make is extremely easy to use!! You just pick it up and open it to the day you are on and do the day!
2) It's gentle but thorough. "Gentle" really is the best word I can describe for Queens. It is not in the lease bit overwhelming. The information and skills are given in small chunks allowing the student to learn in a non confrontational way. I have NEVER had any of my child become frustrated with a lesson from Queens but I have had them get very frustrated using other things. When I switched from Classical Ed to Queens I actually panicked because I didn't think something this easy, this gentle, this (dare I say it) fun would actually teach anything. IT DOES!!!
3) It's independent for the students. Once they can read they are off!
4) It keeps you connected to your students. In my house I was noticing a trend... A learn through your environment approach was too loose in sit down work and needed me to be too involved!!! (hello! I could only take so many nature walks- just sayin'), I couldn't do that with so many babies and being pregnant, so school did not get done very well. But strict textbook style learning was so... disconnected. I didn't feel involved and I missed what the older ones were doing. Queens is perfect for while it teaches independence, within their lessons there are tons of "go read this to your parent", or "study this picture with your parent, or "have your parent dictate this to you and you copy it", etc. AWESOME! now I have independent learners who are told by the book to connect back with me- YES!
5) The stories are fun! In the science and math books (I have not used the math books but I know about them), the content is wrapped into a story. The stories are lovely tales about kids and what they are doing and learning and you are learning right along with them. Think of your favorite book, picture yourself in that book doing everything the characters are. (I am really hoping at this point that you like to read nice books. If you don't... exit stage left please). Anyway, That is how Queens is. Putting you in the story! The stories by the way are not long and boring. They are short and sweet and even the youngest of kids can sit in the living room and listen in!
6) It's easy to catch up on. It's inevitable that we will fall behind but with such gentle lessons its so easy to catch back up.... or work ahead!
7) It works with all learning styles. I have kids across the spectrum on learning styles here and we have easily made it work with all of them!
8) Its easy to make their layout work for alternative schedules. We actually do a 4 day school week and we have enrichment classes on fridays. It has never been hard making Queens work with this schedule.
9) The history/science/geography/bible can all be done "one room school house" style. This is where you teach everyone the same thing at the same time but the application is different.
Ex: We can all read the same history lesson but the application that is done for the 3rd grader will be way different than that of the 5th grader.
Ex 2; Last year I did Mary's Meadow with 1st-7th grade. My younger students needed more help in their book as their reading wasn't up to the level of that book (upper middle school/jr high) and there were some things I just skipped with them and had them draw me a picture but it was still doable and they learned a ton! My 5th and 7th graders were able to do all the applications and way more on the research end and my 5th grader even started her own gardening business and made over $600 this past summer. So there ya go!
10) My kids love it! The one year we changed to something else they did it willingly but they were not thrilled. They had good attitudes and they gave this other CM type curriculum a great go of it BUT they were not in love with it and by the midway point they were asking if we could "please go back to Queens?" next year. We did and There we have stayed!
***note: to be fair, I also use Mystery of History for history along with some of Queens history and Teaching Textbooks and Khan for math.