View Full Version : Trying to decide if TOG is right for us
06-09-2012, 05:38 PM
Hi! I am a military wife with five adorable kids (well, most of the time...) ;) We are moving to Naples, Italy this fall for a three year assignment, and for a variety of a reasons have decided to homeschool. This will be our first venture in home educating!
I want to take advantage of the amazing opportunities we'll have to travel and center our studies around what we're seeing. It seems that TOG would be a good fit, with it's emphasis on humanities.
However, I'm concerned about being a first-timer and getting overwhelmed.
My kids will be in 7th, 5th, 2nd and K, plus a 2 yr old in the mix. I would love any and all input! I'm wondering how more experienced homeschoolers think it would go for us and even which units of TOG would fit best. Should I forgo getting an entire year set, and instead get a series of units? If so, which ones? I definitely want to hit the Renaissance as well as some modern history (WWI and II).
Since you are going to be in Italy for the fall, I would suggest going ahead and starting with Year 1 because you'll also pick up Roman history. Certainly if you liked you could start with Year 1 Unit 4, which is the Rome unit, but I assume you may get to visit other nearby places like Greece and Egypt.
I'd also probably encourage you to try to combine your children into two levels, probably D and LG. Although maybe UG and LG. This will save you stress of trying to juggle more levels and cost of shipping an extra level of books to Italy.
06-10-2012, 11:49 AM
What an exciting opportunity for you! I have kids similiar in age to yours (will be 7th, 5th, 3rd, 1st) and it will be our 4th year using Tapestry in the fall. I agree with Pat about starting with Y1 or at least doing Y1 U4 to cover ancient Rome. Wherever you decide to start, I would go chronologically from there. Y2 U1-U2 covers Middle Ages, Renaissance and Reformation and Y4 U1-U2 covers WW1 and WW2. So, in 3 years you could cover all those things going chronologically starting with Y1U4.
Also Pat's suggestion to use D and LG is great especially if you have a strong 5th grade reader. I often had my 5th grader read the D books even if I did not assign the D questions for him. I will do the same with my 5th grader this next year. When I did Y1, my oldest was in 4th grade and he did much of the D reading, just not the D work/discussions. He is a very strong reader though so it really depends on the child.
Hope you enjoy this time in a foreing country! We love Tapestry and history would come to life even more getting to visit places we were studying. Blessings!
06-12-2012, 12:47 PM
Thanks, Pat and Julie, for your input!
I met with my SIL's friend who uses Tapestry and got to see it first hand. :) She recommended starting Y1 Unit 3, to lay the foundation of Greek civilization before diving into Rome with Unit 4. What do you think?
My thought is to do Y1 units 3-4, regular pace, followed by Y2 units 1-2, spread out over an entire year. I would skip the American History in Y2, since there will be plenty of AmHis when we return to the states. I definitely want to do Y4 units 1-2 to cover the histories of WWI and II. How would you recommend covering Y3 to emphasize European history? Is Art History covered?
I'm getting excited about it -- thanks again for your help!
06-13-2012, 06:30 AM
Your friend makes a good point about laying foundation first for the next piece to make sense. Therefore, I encourage you to consider picking an entry point and then just going forward from there rather than leaping over entire units. For example, yr 2 unit 3 does cover much of the background for the transition from kingdoms to nations in Europe.
I suggest that you look at your plan in light of what you want your oldest child to do for high school. It looks like he/she will be in 9th grade during your last year in Italy. (What a wonderful thing you all are doing for your family by doing this stint overseas, by the way!) You will need to either plan for either re-entering public school again or what you want to award for high school credits if you continue to homeschool. You could start at where you want to be at the end of your international adventure and work backward to see what that looks like. I'm not saying that your plan isn't a good one. Just be sure that you've considered the bigger picture, too.
Oops, I almost forgot to answer your question about art history! Art "history" is specifically covered as an elective at the rhetoric level in all year plans. But there is plenty for younger students to learn and do integrated into their levels, too. Year 2 is the richest year in terms of studying specific artists for younger kids.
Be blessed by your journey!
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