I am pleased to bring you this wonderful guest post review by Emmy Daniels.
This review is about two different curricula, Easy Peasy All in One Homeschool, and Genesis Curriculum. The same person created both of these, but they are two different curricula with completely different styles. I am going to give an overview of each one, what I like and dislike about each one, and how I personally am going to be using them this coming year with my four children.
Easy Peasy is an all-in-one complete curriculum that is free to use. It goes from preschool (learning to read) all the way through high school. The content is based on what the creator, Lee Giles, was using for her own children. She saved all the books and sites, links to videos, worksheets, etc., that she was using so that she could re-use the same things for her other children. She then decided that she could make it available for others to use. I love that she keeps her curriculum free, and she does that because she has a desire to make home schooling easy and possible for more people.
Easy Peasy is divided into levels and years. The levels are roughly equivalent to grade levels, but they tend to be a bit advanced in the reading, so there are placement tests available. The years include math, reading, writing, and LA (grammar and spelling), with thinking and computer every week or so. At the middle school levels, Foreign Language is added. Everything is online, but Lee has started to make LA and the readers available in book form. There are also four “years” to choose from, and those cover Bible, history, and science daily, with health/PE, music, and art every week or so. There are two levels in the years: L for 1st through 4th grades, and M for 5th-8th. This is designed to be done together, so that all levels are learning the same things, with the higher “M” level going a bit more in depth. You cycle through the years twice, once at the L level and once at the M level. The year subjects are: Year 1 — Biology, Ancient History, Matthew and historical books of the Bible; Year 2 — Animals, Early American History, Mark and New Testament minus the other gospels and Revelation; Year 3 — Earth Science, Geography and Cultures, Luke and Psalms and Proverbs, and Year 4 — Physics and Chemistry, 20th Century History, John and Prophets.
The best thing about this curriculum in my opinion is the lack of lesson planning involved. I love that it is laid out day by day, with instructions for each day. My kids like that they can do it themselves and work at their own pace. There is enough variety with online games thrown in, an occasional video, and a few projects as well. The curriculum is challenging enough without all the extra busywork that can drag a subject out. I don’t love all the screen time, but I have started to buy the readers, which cuts out a lot of the online reading. My husband and I own a computer repair
business, so luckily we always have computers that he can refurbish and we have enough computers for each kid to use. Others families with several children and not as many computers may have to take turns, which could make for longer days. My younger two especially like the online games that are included in the curriculum.
Genesis Curriculum is a completely off-line curriculum designed to be used as a one-room schoolhouse type curriculum. The parent reads the material to all students. It is best for about 3rd grade until 8th, although it can be used for high school as well with more in-depth study added. The main curriculum book includes Bible, Greek or Hebrew, spelling, vocabulary, grammar, writing, science, and social studies. (Reading is not included). There is also math you can purchase separately, along with workbooks for each child, an answer book, and a map book. What I love about this curriculum is that all of the lessons are based on the Bible reading. There are 4 years in this curriculum: the Book of Genesis to be followed by the book of Exodus, and the book of Matthew to be followed by the book of Acts. In each one, you will read through the book of the Bible, and the science and Social Studies lesson will come from something in the reading. Each week there is a memory verse to learn together. In the Old Testament books, you will learn some basic Hebrew, and in the New Testament ones, you will learn basic Greek. I love this style of teaching! I read to the kids and we can all have a discussion about what we learned. I also like that the lessons are varied. One day you may learn about a type of animal, and the next you are learning about how an engine works. I tend to get a little bored when studying one subject for too long, so I personally like the variety that this curriculum provides. The vocabulary will generally come from the Bible passage of the day, with review days thrown in, and the writing assignments are based on the things you are learning. This curriculum is extremely affordable as well.
Last year I used the Book of Matthew with all four of my kids, having the older two do the “Explore More” section, which is an option for further study for each day. I didn’t use the writing part of Genesis curriculum; instead, we used Easy Peasy language arts along with the reading. We did do the spelling, vocabulary, and grammar in Genesis curriculum, though, so my kids were sometimes getting double language arts. I am ok with that, though, and I am amazed at the progress my kids showed in those areas last year. My kids enjoyed the time spent together with this curriculum.
This year, I am using Genesis Curriculum Book of Acts (it follows the Book of Matthew and will continue where we left off with the Greek lessons) with my younger two children (ages 8 and 10) and my older two are using Easy Peasy High
School (ages 12 and 14). My 12-year-old daughter is a bit ambitious and wants to do high school level classes for credit during middle school and get college credit while in high school, so she is doing the Easy Peasy High School level courses. Although you can use Genesis Curriculum in high school, I personally think Easy Peasy is a better choice, because they provide everything needed as far as how to grade and how many credits to give for each course. One thing I’m excited for this year is a Learning to Draw class my oldest will take, available on the high school site. My younger two will use Easy Peasy for LA and writing, and my 8-year-old will also use a cursive handwriting curriculum. All four kids use MathUSee for math.
If you are looking for a comprehensive and affordable curriculum, both Easy Peasy Homeschool and Genesis Curriculum are excellent choices! They are easy to use, complete enough without a lot of “fluff,” and they both have a lot of support with Facebook groups and Lee Giles herself available to contact through Facebook or email. I highly recommend both of these, and I am so thankful to have found them to use in our home school journey!
About Emmy Daniels:
This is the start of my 10th year homeschooling. I have 4 kids who are currently 8, 10, 12, and 14 (later this month). My husband works from home as the owner of a computer repair shop, and I am a mostly stay-at-home mom who works a few hours a week at our local recreation center and also takes care of my disabled mother in my home. With so much going on, we love that home schooling can be flexible to fit the needs of our family! Our family loves the Lord and we like to read, hike in our beautiful mountains, hunt, camp, and participate in 4H.
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