Kindred Learning

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  • Reviewed on Friday, July 31, 2009
  • Grades Used: pre-4th
  • Dates used: 2004-2009
Kindred Learning was written for LDS families, but it can be used by anyone as a main curriculum or supplement to public school. It's a "method to the madness". This curriculum is fantastic! It REDUCES SO MUCH OF THE CHAOS!The "Four Year Plan" takes all the material from pre-12th grades and divides it into a four year rotation. In other words, you complete year one (with the entire family learning the SAME topics in history, English, and science, but at their own grade levels) and continue through year four, then start over in year one again so the children cycle through it three times before graduating. Each time you rotate you can add different activities, information, labs, whatever. I find that it reduces the amount of work that I put into lesson plans because the material is the same for all my children, just simplied for the little ones. We all learn together and my oldest children can help teach my younger ones. We find that it brings a great feeling of unity to our home instead of everyone running circles around each other. Learning together has become a beautiful way of life, and everything in our lives fits into one of the four years' focus areas. There is a structure and a place for everything from food storage and emergency preparedness to quilting, cooking, geneology...even sewing on buttons! Although we haven't been able to use this with a cooperative school due to travel issues, we still love this as our main curriculum as a single family home school. Kindred Learning can be as structured or simple as my life allows. If I skip a part becuase I'm sick, pregnant, sleep deprived with a newborn, etc., I know my kids have either already learned it so we can do a quick review and/or they will learn it again in a few years so I don't sweat it too much. This method keeps us on track and introduces critical material just enough that we feel like they are learning what they need but are still able to branch out and explore their passions and personal interests. I'm so right brained (and my children are as well) that we need something with a lot of flexibility and hands on learning. We have so many expiraments and projects that we feel like we're always looking forward to the next creative outlet. There is no shortage of these (and most of them are cheap and easy to do). Because I can tailor this to each child's learning style, we have a lot of FUN. My kids LOVE learning this way. Although there are suggested texts you may choose to teach any scheduled topic from whatever source you wish. My favorite part of this curriculum is the extra material in each of the four manuals. Teri Ebert adds invaluable information on everything from starting your own co-op, to organizing laundry! I can not say enough good things about Kindred Learning. We have looked into other methods and always come RUNNING back with open arms. In Stephen R. Covey's book "The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Families", he discusses creating a "beautiful family culture". Kindred Learning has become the foundation of ours.