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"My core values(as an educator) turned out to be; first and foremost a fundamental respect for the learner and the learning process, second the importance of always fostering a student's ownership of the process and third always encouraging an exploratory, joyful and curious approach to learning. "

I have yet to see a pre-packaged curriculum that fits with these core values.

It depends upon whether you are talking about utilizing the whole curriculum or just the parts that are pertinent to your life. I consider us to be using an "Eclectic" approach. We use several curriculum for different things. We use Rosetta Stone for Spanish (12yo daughter) and Mandarin Chinese (10yo daughter). We use SOS for Language Arts and Science. We tried it for math, but I found the explanations of the concepts to be very confusing. I love math, and if I'm getting confused by their explanation of a concept I already know and know well, there's a problem. The good part about it was that it was very detailed on the terminology of math, but the terminology is not the most important part of math. I'd rather have my child need to learn some of the terminology of math later and get the concepts down right the first time through, than to know the terminology, but have no clue on the concepts. So, we are back to Singapore Math. We handle the History curriculum completely ourselves. Both Homer and I are big history buffs, so making a curriculum has not be difficult.

We use SOS as more of a supplement than as the base curriculum. We live in an area that until a few short years ago was all farms. It is now becoming more suburban, but our little area is still very rural. We plant a big garden every year that is a large part of our food supply (my wallet is hurting from it being off-season!), and Homer is a beekeeper. We have several critters, etc. The girls are required to help with all of it.

Both girls have learned how to can food with a hot water bath. I think we'll work on pressure canning this year. Both have learned how to work with the bees, and the garden. They literally grew up working the garden. I had Bunny planting when she could barely walk. The advantage was that when she fell, she fell into fresh tilled earth. The disadvantage was that when she fell, she fell into fresh tilled earth <g>.

I had not thought we were doing all that much until I talked with some of the parents on the girls' soccer teams. I was talking about their test on Ancient Greece, and the parents were stunned that I had been that detailed on their test. They learned their fractions by cooking and baking (making cookies is a great way to learn multiplication of fractions). They are learning geometry and basic physics by working on their robots. All of these are supplemented by the Singapore Math, but I try to make sure they understand there is a reason to learn the things I teach them, so that when there is something I need to teach them that I do not have a "real life example", they understand that it is necessary even though I may not have an example at hand.
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