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Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Taking Out The Overwhelm In Homeschool with Winter Promise


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Disclosure: Winter Promise provided me with a complementary set of curriculum in exchange for press. Winter Promise did not approach me for this review — this is a product I researched and decided to use for my family, before coordinating a review with Winter Promise. (They didn’t find me — I found them!) All opinions are my own, and I was not required to write a positive review.

There is no doubt that a new school year brings on a lot of emotions. What curriculum should you choose? Will it be the right fit for your kids and if it’s not, what do you do?

My problem as a homeschool mom is that I am really busy. I’m juggling around a ton during a day and the thought of having to do so many subjects in one day was really overwhelming!

That’s when my friend stepped in and said, “Hey, why don’t you look at Winter Promise?” She patiently went over how it would work for me, suggested a theme and told me why she thought it was a great solution for this mama! I was really excited about trying the program.

I also did my own research. I watched YouTube videos, and read the online reviews, and was super confident that Winter Promise was the missing link to making our homeschool year happy, productive and fun!






Why Winter Promise Is a Good Match for Our Homeschool

Why did I settle on Winter Promise, when there are dozens — hundreds! — of options? It’s Charlotte-Mason inspired, so it

  • includes interactive journaling
  • uses living books and literature
  • encourages narration in many formats, and
  • incorporates nature studies (important to this farm mama!)

But it’s also eclectic (like us!) Winter Promise offers

  • deep, rich, and detailed learning experiences,
  • structured repetition, and
  • presents history in many contexts,

so kids can see the past is woven together into a pattern we can see even today.

Winter Promise is also friendly towards multiple learning styles. The curriculum includes experiences for every learner, including

  • the active child who needs to be hands-on and try things for himself,
  • the visual child who needs to see things physically to have a tangible connection,
  • the auditory child who needs to hear stories read aloud,
  • the logical child who needs to see how everything is connected and why it matters.

We love how adaptable the assignments are!

How Winter Promise Blends with Real Life

Our homeschool experience is fairly non-traditional. I work from home and travel a lot as well. We’re remodeling an old farmhouse while we make our home in between a couple of different locations, and we’re diving headlong into homesteading and farm life, too. We have to make homeschooling work alongside the crazy life we already live.

Winter Promise allows us to integrate education into our real-life experiences as we

  • learn together as a family with practical, doable studies, and
  • apply culture-relevant work skill to service and leadership projects

The curriculum is a dynamic as we are, with

  • unique, intriguing themes
  • exclusive theme resources
  • open & go learning activities
  • buildable, foldable games, and
  • amazing portfolio journals,

How Winter Promise Works

It all starts with choosing a theme. I love that this program has created themes around learning which include a couple subjects. This was HUGE for me. If I could knock out a couple of subjects with ONE curriculum, that meant I would have more time in the day for other real-life learning experiences.

Winter Promise ’s themed programs provide history, culture, journaling, open-n-go activities, Bible and worldview, geography and some science! You just need to You can a math and language arts program, and you’re good to go!

The themed programs are also designed to engage any type of learner. In just my family I have the hands-on learner, the visual learner, and the logical learner, so this helped us a ton.

I am still diving into the curriculum since we just started — but here is what I picked, my thoughts and some pretty pictures.

We went with Adventures in the Sea & Sky which covers world history in sailing, flight, space travel and more (perfect for my adventurous boys.)

Included was an easy-to-use guide with a weekly schedule — which sealed the deal for me. One of my struggles homeschooling in the past was trying to come up with my own things to add on to our program, and this makes it easy. You can literally open the guide with a schedule that tells you what you need to do every single day. (Say it louder for the people in the back!)

On the website, you can see samples of the themes (which is helpful in deciding what to choose) and there are a few different purchasing options.

The e-book set which means you will get all the curriculum in e-book form. This is great if you’re schooling on the road, in a tiny place, or you just don’t want paper stacks.

I chose print sets (thanks to my friend who knows I need to see and hold the book) this saved me SO much time. Instead of trying to figure everything out myself, wrangle the PDFs and printing options, I simply got all the items printed and mailed to me. This way, I could get three-ring binders and organize all our school things way ahead of time.

You can also decide to get the mixed set, which is basically all of the e-book resources in PDF, but with a teacher’s guide and student journal in print.

PLUS, you guys — this is cool. Cruz is only four but really wants to do everything his big brothers do, so we are trying to include him in this year’s schooling. Winter Promise has a Sea & Sky Young Learners guide! YAY! So Cruz gets to be a part of it as well.

This particular theme is geared towards grade 4-9th (not counting the Young Learners guide which is for Cruz) which means I don’t have to do multiple subjects, multiple grades. So easy, right?

We have just started our first week, so I will have more on Winter Promise as we dig in deeper — but I have been super happy so far. All the guesswork is taken out, my schedule is already made (AMEN) and I don’t have to search for extra activities or look for more to do with a subject.

Everything is organized and there are even book suggestions, video suggestions and an additional book of fun suggested enrichment activities.

I think this theme is incredible too because there are so many ways to tie it into everyday life. We’re planning on visiting quite a few aquariums and museums to help connect learning to real life.

Are you a homeschooler or are you considering homeschooling?

What do you feel is the most exciting or the most overwhelming part of it for you? Drop a comment below, and one of our homeschooling editors will help you out.

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