Wednesday, April 30, 2014

How I Choose Our History Curriculum

This one was actually super easy for me to decide. Last year ECJ and I worked through about 3 books of a series of history that we'd borrowed from the library that we both really enjoyed. So, for next year's history curriculum we'll be purchasing History of US by Joy Hakim.

*Please note that these texts are secular and that they use the now common C.E. and B.C.E. acronyms. They mean Common Era and Before Common Era. I simply teach my children B.C. and A.D. and then explain why the new acronyms are used so that when they go to college they aren't thrust at with new terminology.*

We'll be purchasing them through Amazon (not affiliated, but LOVE the site) here . As you can see this is a several volume set that you can either buy all at once or a book at a time. There is also study guides (for all levels of learning), teacher guides (for all levels of learning), and assessment tests for each book. This means you can go through these books with your elementary students through your high school students.

For elementary level we'll be splitting the books up to cover over the course of 2-3 years. ECJ will cover all books in one year as he is capable of dealing with that amount of material. 

I will be purchasing each book separately and used to save on cost (even adding in shipping this is still less expensive than buying the whole set at once for us because it is spread out.) ECJ will not be using these texts next year however, he'll be using them for 10th grade.

So, what will he be using for 7th grade? He'll be using Studies in World History Vol. 1 . This is a three book course designed for middle school students and uses the regular A.D. and B.C. terminology. He'll work through Vol. 1 for 7th grade, Vol. 2 in 8th, and Vol. 3 in 9th ... Though we'll be throwing in some extra history work for him in 9th grade. These sets just became available and for the whole Vol. 1 set (including student text and teacher's guide) the total is 43.98. In Vol. 1 he'll learn all about the time from 6000 B.C. through to 1500 A.D. 

That brings our History curriculum for next year (purchased used and new) to: $64.90 which includes two teacher's guides, a student guide, and three text books

And our total cost for curriculum so far for next year to: $384.05. Not bad, still under the $400 mark and we're hoping to make it even a bit lower. 

Don't forget there's a few more of these posts in this series with the last one being how I'm going to supplement our income to help offset the costs of this curriculum!!

Find us on Facebook here or subscribe to the blog for tips on homeschooling, book reviews, how to get your children helping out in the kitchen, and to see many pictures of the cute kiddos, plus much more!


  1. It's going to be awhile before my kids are in middle school and high school, but I've been thinking about what we're going to use to teach different subjects as the kids get older. Since they're in early elementary right now we have it pretty easy teaching the basics, but it's always good to hear some thoughts on the more detailed work as they get older. Thanks for the insights!

    1. Any time. And if you'd like to check out The History of US by Joy Hakim you can always see if your local library has them. It never hurts to ask and if it's something you wouldn't ever use you can cross it off the list of possibles :-)

  2. I've never heard of Studies in World History! We've browsed History of US before but it didn't really click with us. Did you know she also has a science history series? It's The Story of Science and I think there are 3 volumes. It is secular too, though, which gets a bit annoying for science as it is more 'in your face'. If I remember right she begins with creation 'myths' from many cultures. I peeked at them at our library once but it has been a while.

    I love seeing each of your curriculum posts but the one per week pace is driving me! It must be a homeschool mom thing because I love reading what others are planning for curricula even when it's something that we haven't ever considered.

    1. I hadn't known that she has the science series, but you're right the secular thing with science is much more in your face. I found out about the Studies in World History through an email I was sent when they first became released a few weeks ago. I'm giving them a shot because it's meant for middle school level and that's what he needs along with more world history.

      LOL it is a homeschool mom thing I'm sure because we all seem to love curricula. If I tried to write more than one of them a week though I'd go bonkers looking at the numbers LOL