Bible and Character – Following God (ICI Ministries), Apologia’s Who is God?, Achieve True SuccessTM
I wrote about “Following God” on the Kindergarten page so I won’t repeat material from there. We used the Grade 1 and 2 titles with the two older children but switched to Apologia’s Who Is God series in 2014. I wrote about that also on the Kindergarten page. In short, Apologia’s Bible curriculum takes a “worldview” approach to life. I find it is quite deep theologically but provides a sound basis on the faith.
I also weighed in with my thoughts on Achieve True SuccessTM at the Kindergarten page. It is a truly useful book and excellent reference for teaching Character.
Social Studies – One Country, One People; Kayamanan, Araling Panlipunan
One Country, One People – We started with the English edition for my two oldest learners. I switched us the Filipino version because I wanted to get my children more opportunities learning to use Filipino. It is not a requirement of our homeschool but my nephews and nieces in conventional schools learn their Social Studies about the Philippines using texts written in Filipino. As a result, I noticed a lower Social Studies grade in my daughter’s OLSAT-MAT. It’s unfortunate this is the case but to me it’s more important that they learn about the mother country using the native tongue. I also want them to get those extra years of practice with Filipino rather than wait till later to start using the language. “Short term loss over long term gain” was my consideration. I would like my children to be comfortable with both English and Filipino.
Kayamanan – I decided to try this series because there were a lot of visuals in the text, it had good quality paper and lots of exercises. My children didn’t like it. The Filipino used is for native speakers of Filipino i.e. deep Filipino. So I found another book that deals with the same topics in simpler language and with less frills.
Araling Panlipunan – I found these (books 2 and 3) at National Bookstore. Somewhat pricey but has lots of content. The newsprint used is durable and doesn’t smudge. The books were an easier alternative to “Kayamanan” if you struggle with Filipino.
Language Arts – Filipino – Binhi, Komunikasyon
Binhi – A good text for teaching Filipino children who are growing up with English as the mother tongue and Filipino as the second language. Strange but sadly true. The Filipino used in the textbook is deep and varied enough to expand the vocabulary of my struggling Filipino learners yet still at a “doable” level for my kids to succeed. Like Sing Spell Read and Write it can be considered a complete language arts set for Filipino. I supplement with videos and songs in Filipino and children’s storybooks to get my children getting used to reading Filipino. Available only through authorized agents of the publisher (TMA Homeschool in our case) and comes with a Teacher’s Manual.
Komunikasyon – As with “Kayamanan”, this text is designed for learners whose first language is Filipino. We struggled too much with it and switched back to Binhi in the middle of the school year (2014-2015).