what are your thoughts? my child is very advanced and is doing great in school. is it the same program? is it simple to teach?
Having been home schooled full time until high school and then part time until I was Junior, I used a lot of varieties of curriculum.
ABEKA was, by far, my least favorite. We dropped the math in fourth grade and switched to Saxon, not because the math was too difficult for me, but simply because I found the formats of the books annoying. We continued to use their English, Science, and History until sixth or seventh grade, but I always found them irritating.
It seemed to me (though I could not, of course, have articulated it in this way at the time) that ABEKA was primarily concerned with religious indoctrination and only secondarily focused on education. I was raised in a Christian home, am still a Christian, but felt even at the time that I didn't need the constant reinforcement of, "God is awesome. He created everything. The world is messed up because people messed up. If everyone listened to God, everything would be perfect."
This, in my opinion, is far too simplistic for junior high history texts. Rather than teaching a student to think and reason, it teaches that student to blindly accept whatever they are told by authority. Were I to have children and choose to homeschool them, I absolutely wouldn't use ABEKA, or, for that matter, any of the other curriculum I used as a child, except for Saxon.
In eighth grade, my mom started to change her ideas about curriculum and to realize that it wasn't necessary to beat me soundly about the head with the good Christian message through every medium. We started using the same books the public school used for their honors classes. Everyone was happier and it put me on the road to be prepared for my community college enrollment when I was sixteen. That would be my preferred method.
I haven't used any of their upper level (junior/senior high) courses, but I have used their early elementary grammar program. It has been very easy to teach (short, simple, to-the-point lessons) and my son has done very well.
I have heard that it is advanced, but since we don't follow the public school scope, I couldn't say for sure.
I was only taught through Abeka and Bob Jones all through school (with the exception of kindergarten). You can see Abeka's curriculum at www.abeka.com. They are also associated with Pensacola Christian Academy and Pensacola Christian College down in Florida, which you can find from surfing the web also.
Abeka offers a video program using great teachers. The only disadvantage is that they get BORING. I know of several schools around that have tried using their spanish tapes that failed (because they couldn't keep the student's interest, and because of the lack of interaction, etc.). But if the child keeps their interest on the video then they would be well off.
You could just get the curriculum and teach it yourself. My mom did this for me up until I was in the third grade. However, she spent a lot of work making sure she knew the info before teaching us also. I guess it would be a little bit of challenge to teach as with all homeschooling, especially with high school (Spanish, for example, can get really frustrating when you have a question). But if it's something you need to do and you set your mind to it (with some support occasionally maybe) you could do it.
i used it in jr high school. I liked it. But their math sucked in my opinion. Their science books are spot on, as is their English and History.
A Beka is a great Curriculum. I was taught it at my private school growing up and I am planning to use it this year for home schooling my own kids. If you plan to teach at home, then I suggest looking on Ebay at some used books. I just bought a few myself.
I'm going into Grade 12 this year, and I've used the books and videos since grade 5. I absolutely LOVE it and so does my brother and parents. It's very thorough, and explanatory (math is a little difficult, unless you use the videos). The books are just great. I have to say, I don't think I could have gotten a better education with any other books. My mom loves the videos because all she has to do is the marking, no teaching.
I've taught this curriculum and do know that it is set up for a home school parent to work with. They are very good in the younger grades (K5-2ND). In grades after that I do like their format for science/history/health/bible but did not entirely agree with the way they teach math and english. Personally I would go with Bob Jones University Press for those subjects.
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