5th Grade Homeschool Curriculum for an Independent Learner

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Notebook and school supplies for fifth grade homeschool

Can I just say how excited I am to have a fifth-grader this year? Fourth grade was awesome, but fifth grade seems to be such a year of growth for kids. I’m looking forward to all the learning and discussion we will have together this year!

Weston is 11 years old now and able to complete a lot of learning on his own. In fact, he strongly prefers to work independently, so I chose his 5th-grade homeschool curriculum with that in mind.

I still work with Weston one-on-one in grammar and writing, but otherwise I just stay available to help when he gets stuck. I also go over his assignments with him when he is finished for the day.

5th Grade Homeschool Math Curriculum

This year Weston will be working through Math-U-See Delta. Ideally he would be doing MUS Epsilon (one level higher than Delta) this year, but he is on track to finish MUS Epsilon, Zeta, and Pre-Algebra by the end of eighth grade. With that in mind, I’m completely satisfied with his progress.

Near the end of last school year I was a little dismayed to find that Weston wasn’t as proficient with his math facts (especially multiplication) as I had hoped. We’re upping our fact practice this year with daily CalcuLadder drill sheets. I bought the CalcuPak software instead of the printed books because it ended up being less expensive.

5th Grade Homeschool Language Arts Curriculum

English Grammar

When it comes to grammar, there’s just no contest—the kids always request to stick with Easy Grammar. We’ve used Easy Grammar for about 10 years now, and I absolutely love the prepositional approach taught in this series!

(In the past we’ve also used Daily Grams, a review series by the same author. Here’s my comparison of Easy Grammar and Daily Grams.)

Writing

For some reason I find it very challenging to teach writing. So when I say I “teach” writing, I may be stretching things just a little. Sigh.

Weston is going to continue to use the Just Write series that he began using last year. I like that it presents skills in bite-size pieces and contains all the instruction right in the student book.

I usually read aloud or rephrase the instruction part before Weston completes the writing exercises. That way I know that he understands what is being taught before he tries to put it into practice.

Thankfully I am pretty confident in correcting his work (I’m a freelance editor). My biggest challenges are keeping my expectations at an elementary level and not over-correcting his writing.

Vocabulary

Last year Weston used Vocabu-Lit, and we really liked it! However, we are going back to Working with Words this year because it is so affordable and we like its straightforward approach.

The Working with Words series only goes through eighth grade, so we will definitely be switching back to Vocabu-Lit for high school.

Spelling

This year we are going back to Spelling Power, although we won’t be using the book the way it was intended to be used. Because Weston is what I call a “natural speller”—meaning he spells most words correctly without practice—he doesn’t need to go through the whole Spelling Power process.

Instead we will use the word lists as a guide to find words that he needs to practice. I will read the spelling word, and if he spells it correctly, he will move on; if he doesn’t, he will write the word correctly and then it will be added to the next day’s list to retest.

Reading

Weston loves history and biographies, which makes planning reading easy! He will be reading a lot of books from Heroes of History series and the Christian Heroes: Then and Now series (both by Geoff and Janet Benge).

He can easily read one of these books in a few days because he enjoys them so much. I buy the Kindle editions because they are a little less expensive and because they don’t add to our over-crowded bookshelves.

Notebook, green apple, and school supplies for fifth grade homeschool

5th Grade Homeschool Social Studies Curriculum

Weston loves to work independently, making School of Tomorrow PACEs an excellent fit for him. This year he will be working through Social Studies PACEs 1049-1060, which focuses on American history.

My goal is to find one biography or history book to go along with people or events in each PACE. I’ve found that the extra reading really helps to bring history to life!

5th Grade Homeschool Science Curriculum

This year Weston will be using School of Tomorrow’s Science PACEs 1049-1060. He will be covering topics such as living and non-living matter, forms of energy, volcanoes, astronomy, and gravity.

I love that Science PACEs also include health-related topics, helping us to meet our state requirements for health and physiology. This year Weston will be learning about the ear, hearing difficulties, and vibration and pitch of sounds.

5th Grade Homeschool Bible Curriculum

We have used School of Tomorrow Bible Reading PACEs for many years now, and I still think it is the best Bible curriculum out there for this grade level.

This year Weston will work through Bible Reading PACEs 1049-1060. He will be reading the Bible books of Acts, Genesis, Exodus, and part of the Psalms. He will also be reviewing the books of the Bible that he has learned over the last 2 years.

A Few Extras

Handwriting

We make a slow start on cursive in our homeschool, so Weston will continue honing his cursive skills with Handwriting Skills Simplified D. We have used this series for years, and I highly recommend it.

Typing

I believe EVERY child needs to learn to type in this digital age. My top pick for a comprehensive, easy-to-use, and affordable typing curriculum is Typesy. I’m hoping that Weston will be proficient at touch typing by the end of the school year.

Have questions about my homeschool curriculum picks? Leave a comment below!

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