**Note: It has been brought to my attention that this post sounds as though I’m “blaming” A.C.E. for these weaknesses. I apologize. That is not at all how I intended this to sound. In this post, I am simply sharing my experience with A.C.E. Each curriculum has weaknesses. Since I am currently using A.C.E., I am writing about it. As a home schooling mom, I want to give my children the best possible education. Whatever curriculum I use, I want to enjoy the privilege of tweaking it to fit my family. Here are a few ways I have adjusted A.C.E. for us. I thought these suggestions might help someone else who is using A.C.E., but would like to add to it. That is all. Thank you for your understanding.
The Management :]
I attended a Christian school which used A.C.E. for ten years of my education. I home schooled for the last three years using Abeka materials. When I made the transition from A.C.E. to Abeka, I found that I had several gaps in my education. I would like to address these gaps and the ways I’m striving to overcome them as I use A.C.E. with my own children.
Weakness #1: I did not have addition or subtraction facts memorized. I knew my times tables, but that was it.
Remedy: Have students use the Math Builder program on the A.C.E. Readmaster Plus software, or use some other method of practice, such as flash cards.
Weakness #2: I had not read a single book for literature, nor had I had learned any literary terms in my entire A.C.E. experience. I read the material in the PACE’s and I read books on my own, but no outside reading was assigned to me via the curriculum.
Remedy: Purchase the Creative Writing/ Literature PACE’s from A.C.E. (which were not available to me), or use another literature program.
Weakness #3: I was not a good note taker because A.C.E. is a program in which the student works independently – no note taking required!
Remedy: Have your child take notes in church, then ask them key questions from the sermon as a “test”. Enroll your child in a co-op class where they need to take notes and study from the notes.
Weakness #4: I had never written a research paper, and only a few book reports.
Remedy: Many good books are available online or in your library that explain how to write a research paper. Assign a topic and have your child complete a research paper each year beginning in fourth or fifth grade. Also, assign four-six book reports each year beginning in third grade. Two of these should be oral book reports.
Weakness #5: I had never memorized a poem.
Remedy: Assign a poem each month to memorize. This is fun for the whole family!! Also, be sure your child memorizes The Gettysburg Address, the preamble to the Constitution, etc.
No curriculum is perfect. Even a good curriculum that seems perfect might need to be adjusted to meet the specific needs of a child. These are just a few ways we are adjusting a good curriculum to make it even better for our family.
Happy home schooling!