My family and I seek to follow the classical tradition in our homeschooling. To give you an idea, my brief, working definition of Classical Christian Education is as follows:
Classical Christian Education seeks to cultivate wisdom and virtue by nourishing a person’s love of truth, goodness, and beauty; for the chief end of glorifying God and enjoying Him for ever.
My understanding of what constitutes a classical education has shifted from a purely Trivium-based curriculum to a more rested form of liberal arts education, which is more akin, but not exclusive to, Charlotte Mason’s application of classical principles, and Christian emphases. Perhaps you may notice as subtle shift in my curriculum choices during the Kindergarten (2019-20) and First Grade (2020-21) years. The new list for Kindergarten (2021-22) picks can be found here.
But enough talk about philosophies, for now. More recently, a huge box of books arrived in our home, which included most of our homeschooling materials for the next school year (2021-22).
I’m currently preparing to homeschool two students in a few months from now, which means that both of my children will now be enrolled with a homeschool provider. You can find some of the book selections or curriculum choices for my incoming second grade or Year 2 student below. Books or curriculum indicated with a star emoji [★] will be used as a spine material. The rest will be supplementary.
A lot of people would ask in homeschool groups, Which Bible version is best for my child? I think it would be wise to choose the same version that is being used in your church community because it promotes continuity and consistency. We use the ESV at home because our church uses the ESV in our liturgies.
We read The Tent of God story Bible in the morning, while we read through the Bible at night during family worship. We will be tackling the Major and Minor prophets next, so I have also chosen some Bible Wise books (David, Jonathan, Hezekiah, Daniel, Elijah, and Jeremiah) by Carine Mackenzie, as readers for my daughter.
- The Tent of God by Marianne Radius [out of print] ★
- Bible Wise series by Carine Mackenzie
- God’s Bible Timeline by Linda Finlayson
- ESV Bible
Catechism and Confessions
Aside from stories and Scripture, we do not use any formal character curriculum these days. Instead, we seek to teach the creeds, catechisms and confessions that are confessed by our church. Because we are Reformed and Presbyterian in tradition, we teach the Westminster standards at church and at home, as a system of doctrine that is taught in the Bible.
- Bible Truth Explored: Searching the Scriptures with the Shorter Catechism by Murdo Macleod ★
- Our Faith: Understanding Scripture with the Westminster Confession by Matthew Vogan and Catherine Hyde
- Big Beliefs!: Small Devotionals Introducing Your Family to Big Truths by David Helm
- Learning the Christian Faith by Roland S. Ward
You will be able to pre-order some of these materials from my friends at Coram Deo Bookstore on Facebook.
This portion is not officially part of the Philippine curriculum. But classical myths, history and languages are essential elements that I wish to inculcate in the imagination and intellectual life of my children. You can read more about the principles of how we employ the liberal arts tradition in our Filipino home over here.
Classical Myths & History
- Classic Myths to Read Aloud by William F. Russell ★
- The Iliad for Boys and Girls by Alfred J. Church
- The Odyssey for Boys and Girls by Alfred J. Church
These books could also be classified under Free Reads. You can get them locally at The Learning Basket.
I’ve decided to toss First Language Lessons and jump into the Institute for Excellence for Writing (IEW) bandwagon because their resources are dyslexia-friendly. It also comes in highly recommended by my daughter’s reading interventionist and specialist at The Literacy Ladder, Ms. Fides Mendoza. You can learn more about How the Structure and Style Writing Approach Supports Reading at the IEW blog.
- Structure and Style® for Students Level 1A by IEW ★
- Bible Heroes Writing Lesson by IEW
- Fix It! Grammar Book 1: The Nose Tree
- Primary Language Lessons by Emma Serl
- Grammar-land by M. L. Nesbit
- Wonder Book for Boys and Girls by Nathaniel Hawthorne
- Heidi by Johanna Spyrie
- Peter Pan by J.M. Barrie
- The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett
- A Stage Full of Shakespeare Stories by Angela McAllister ★
- Beautiful Stories of Shakespeare by E. Nesbit
- How to Teach Children Shakespeare by Ken Ludwig
You can find out more about some of the Shakespeare resources we use over here.
I’ve also chosen to zero in on the Greeks for this year, thus H. A. Guerber’s The Story of the Greeks, edited and updated by Nothing New Press is my choice for our main history text.
- The Story of the Greeks by H. A. Guerber ★
- On the Shores of the Great Sea by M. B. Synge
- Story of the World 2 by Susan Wise Bauer
- Viking Tales by Jennie Hall
World History Tales & Biographies
Seeing the we’ll be learning as much as we can about the Greek civilization, I also incorporated a number of historical biographies into the mix.
- The Children’s Plutarch: Tales of the Greeks by F. J. Gould ★
- Our Little Spartan Cousin of Long Ago by Julia Darrow Cowles
- Our Little Athenian Cousin of Long Ago by Julia Darrow Cowles
- Three Greek Children by Alfred J. Church
Philippine History & Biographies
- Francisco the Filipino by Burtis McGie Little
- The Filipino Twins by Lucy Fitch Perkins
- Great Lives Series: Teodoro Alonso by Ambeth Ocampo
- Great Lives Series: Apolinario Mabini by Dr. Stephen Latorre
Church History (Medieval Church)
We now move into the Medieval Church for church history. But I’d also like to choose a few Puritan and Covenanters so that my children will know their historical forebears and spiritual heritage.
- Trial and Triumph by Richard Hannula ★
- Monks and Mystics: Chronicles of the Medieval Church by Mindy and Brandon Withrow
- For Christ’s Crown: Sketches of Puritans and Covenanters by Richard Hannula
- Anselm of Canterbury by Simonetta Carr
- God’s Timeline by Linda Finlayson
I am quite useless in Filipino, having grown up speaking mostly Ilonggo and the Amoy dialect in my childhood home in Bacolod. But Sa Dako Pa Roon and Noong Unang Panahon by Tahanan Books offer Tagalog texts which make reading and learning easier because of the familiarity of the stories. My homeschool hack is also having the English editions of these books, which I refer to ever so often. Plus, the bite-size lessons of Wikahon are welcome teaching helps in our home.
- Wikahon A by Adarna Books ★
- Sa Dako Pa Roon retold by Fran Ng
- Noong Unang Panahon retold by Fran Ng [out of print]
- Ang Maraming Ngalan ni Emilio by Weng Cahiles
- Ang Kaibigan kong si Mabini by Becky Bravo
- Ang Lakambini at Ako by Becky Bravo
- Cinco de Noviembre by Fr. Rene Javellana, S.J.
- Si Juanito, Noong Panahon ng mga Amerikano by Augie Rivera
Thanks to my friend Inna of INK Book Nook for helping me acquire most of these Filipino materials, particulary the out-of-print Noong Unang Panahon.
Arithmetic & Mental Math
I’ve sung my praises for Math U See materials in this Instagram post.
You can reach out to Natasha Mison via email firstname.lastname@example.org to get a list of Math U See materials. She is the official distributor of MUS in the Philippines.
I love using living books for our nature studies, but I also wanted more “structure” in our homeschool, which led me to find Building Foundations of Scientific Understanding or BFSU. This material works alongside Early Elementary Science Education, an abridged edition of the BFSU, which makes the original text more approachable while providing a system for teaching science. It incorporates content and activities together, which I hope will work for my two children. I’ve also given it a go in the past week, and my children seem to enjoy it. It is a secular material, so I will write more about how I will implement this curriculum at home.
- Building Foundations of Scientific Understanding by Bernard J. Nebel, PhD ★
- Early Elementary Science Education by Shannon Jordan
- The Natural History Story Book by Ethel Talbot
- The Fairy-Land of Science by Arabella Buckley
- Birds of the Air by Arabella Buckley
- By Pond and River by Arabella Buckley
- Archimedes and the Door of Science by Jeanne Bendick
You can find some of these living books over at Our Living Learning.
Music and Composer Biographies (Baroque Period)
I decided to concentrate on the Baroque Period in music, so I chose Handel and Bach for this year.
Art History and Appreciation
Selections from The Harp and Laurel Wreath will be incorporated in our memory work, while daily readings from the I Am the Seed will work its way in our basket time together.
- The Harp and Laurel Wreath by Laurel Berquist ★
- I Am the Seed That Grew The Tree selected by Fionna Waters
- The Chronicles of Narnia (The Silver Chair & The Last Battle) by C. S. Lewis
- D’Aulaires’ Book of Norse Myths
- The Iliad and The Odyssey by Gillian Cross
- Sir Gawain and the Green Knight by Michael Morpurgo
- Big Thinkers and Big Ideas: An Introduction to Eastern and Western Philosophy for Kids by Sharon Kaye
Part of the requirements of our homeschool provider is to turn in a number of written work for each quarter. This is why I have created some copywork printables to make my life easier. Most if it are FREE to download in my shop, or see below.
Last updated on April 19, 2021
Do you have any questions about our book selections? Or would you like to learn more about a certain material? Do you think this list is helpful or not?
I’d love to hear your thoughts and suggestions! Please comment below.