|The homeschool book shelf.|
Second, the interest in learning seems to already be higher than it has ever been. By investing in some high-quality books, we're getting away from the banality of "school books" and into some pretty exciting topics that are challenging as much as they are informative.
Third, the mundane "sameness" of a pre-planned, every-book-is-the-same-format curriculum is gone, replaced with a new way to learn for each subject. Non-fiction texts, image-rich encyclopedias, web sites, videos (soon), and notebooking are taking the place of read-and-fill-in-the-blank workbooks. The kids are much more engaged, and it provides a good mental reboot on each subject to feel and see a change in medium.
Fourth, we love Saxon Math. It's just awesome. Wife and I are learning to use it still. But the kids seem to be gaining confidence each day, they're already learning new stuff, and it's explained easily, resulting in much more efficient uses of time for all of us.
Lastly, the unit studies are gonna be great. We started at the beginning - literally. The Creation story and the Big Bang dominated science, religion, history, spelling, and vocab last week. The kids were even debating the theology of the Big Bang at dinner this weekend, even on Thing #1's birthday. That level of retention and interest is EXACTLY what we were going for.