When choosing a homeschool curriculum we always want it to produce a quality education. We want the curriculum to teach our children in a way where they will retain the information. The ideal curriculum will not only educate our children, but will make the learning process enjoyable. I knew Sonlight would provide these desired outcomes. However, I wasn’t expecting the following side effects.
When we began our Sonlight journey, my son was the very definition of a reluctant reader. Dyslexia and ADHD means that reading and focusing is very difficult for him. However, I also knew that he learns best through stories vs. textbooks. So I took a gamble and made the switch to a Literature based curriculum.
Our switch to Sonlight is not only providing a solid education for Grasshopper, it is also having these side effects.
Side Effect 1: Bible Became Priority
Grasshopper has become insistent that our day begins with Bible. He proudly proclaims that it is the most important thing and we cannot under any circumstances skip Bible time. Our homeschool day cannot begin with anything other than reading the Word of God.
Side Effect 2: Expanded Interests
It used to be a huge challenge to get Grasshopper interested in any book that wasn’t about Transformers, Star Wars, or the Avengers. He did always have an interest in American History, but wasn’t too interested in reading stories about that time period.
Now that we’ve been diving into some great literature picks, he has been enjoying book titles that stray from his former fixations. Don’t get me wrong, he’s still very fixated on previous interests. My point, is that he is willing to expand his reading selections. Not only is he expanding his interests, but he’s enjoying it as well!
Side Effect 3: Growing Vocabulary
Reading good literature is bound to expand a person’s vocabulary. Because of side effect number two, his vocabulary has also grown by leaps and bounds. It is not uncommon for him to interrupt me mid sentence to ask the meaning of a word. This tells me he is also engaged.
I’ll take this over official vocabulary lessons any day!
Side Effect 4: Requests for One More Chapter
I must admit this one was the least expected side effect of them all. With his limited attention span, I was sure I would never hear the words “keep reading” or “one more chapter”. However, this has happened on several occasions. Especially while reading the Sign of the Beaver and Johnny Tremain.
It has been so fun to see a joy for reading blossom in Grasshopper.
Side Effect 5: I’m Learning Too
I have learned so much while studying American History this year. Things that were never talked about when I attended public school. It has been a fun enjoyable experience for me to teach and learn right along side of Grasshopper.
Side Effect 6: Bonding Time
Our morning time has been so enjoyable as a mom. Grasshopper doesn’t like to just sit and spend time with me very often. He is a nine year old boy full of energy after all!
Our morning time spent reading together has been a great bonding experience for us. We’re able to discuss events in history, our Bible reading, and experiences the characters are having in our read alouds. These are conversations we would be missing out on if it were not for Sonlight.
Side Effect 7: Developing a Love of Learning
The approach Sonlight takes (using stories and literature over textbooks) has made learning enjoyable again. I see Grasshopper being engaged and wanting to learn more. School time isn’t just a task anymore, but an experience.Our homeschool has transformed from something we have to do each day, to something he looks… Click To Tweet
Well, until we move on to math and spelling anyway 😉
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