Sonlight Curriculum - Preschool and Kindergarten experiences
by Amber Scott
(Lemont, PA, USA)
For my first two years of homeschooling I found Songlight curriculum to be a great way to get my feet wet. I was worried about what I needed to cover in a day, what to read study talk about and so on. Sonlight balances all of this for you. They have great already planned out schedules with great books and subjects to learn about. My kids and I adored most of the books and had a really good first two years.
In order to meet what was happening in our lives, I found that would have to often change the schedule. This seemed to work fine but added more work then I anticipated.
I really enjoyed the books.
We won't be returning to Sonlight for 1st grade next year but I am finding that it has more to do with my way of teaching and the kids way of learning then with the curriculum itself. The kids and I tend to be more hands on and like more flexibility in our homeschool schedule than what is built into Sonlight Curriculum. I also would like to focus more on local history and American history this next year, where Sonlight continues on with world history.
We plan to read some of their read alouds next year but the History drives their program and since I want to go a different direction with history for next year and do more of a unit based approach we are going to try something different.
Some of the ways we made the curriculum work in our family is by doing Bible at breakfast and my husband would do the chapter read alouds after dinner as a family. All the other work we did in the morning during a designated school time unless we had dance or something to attend.
One thing I did find hard was the Language Arts(LA) program provided. My daughter could read at a 1st grade level so we bought both the K and the 1 st grade LA programs and reading books to try and see where she fit in with the program.
She was in need of the Kindergarten Language Arts but the reading books go with the LA and so there was an inbalance here for her and I tried to incorporate the 1st grade LA but once again this created some extra work and I gave up after a few months on this. It seemed to go okay for the year.
If you are looking to use the Sonlight Curriculum, you will need to decide whether you will follow their reading and LA together or follow another program. We had started with another phonics based reading program before hitting Kindergarten and my daughters reading took off. I have had other friends do their program and it worked well for them they started reading later then we did and that worked well.
The Songlight Program was really good, but it just was not the right match for our family.
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