Sonlight to me…

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These Sonlight children love to learn!

These Sonlight children love to learn!

As I read what Jonelle, Judy and Karla wrote about Sonlight to me, I couldn't help nodding and grinning and thinking, “Yes, but there is so much more!”

Sonlight was a miracle in a box to me. You see, I had been homeschooling my children for seven years using various unsatisfactory methods and styles before I found Sonlight. I KNEW what we liked, but I just couldn't seem to pull it off. We loved books—real books, real people, real stories AND we liked to learn together. One year we did just that.

The year I wrote my own unit studies my children were in 9th, 7th, 5th and 1st grades and my youngest was three years old. We loved it and we learned so much. But it was exhausting for me. I did a lot of research, pulled together a lot of books and spent countless hours figuring out how to coordinate everything. When everyone else was done for the day I was still slaving away at the kitchen table planning for tomorrow and next week and next month. Although I liked the concept of learning together, the joy was sucked right out of it because of all the planning I had to do.

At the end of that year I was burnt out and ready to go back to textbooks, workbooks and boredom.  That year, the best part of the day was when I read classic literature to my children, but I found it harder and harder to make time for that. There was just so much “school” to do that we hardly had time for the fun stuff.

homeschool kids on porch

Sonlight siblings learning together.

Then I found Sonlight and it was like a miracle in a box. Even though I didn't know anyone who had used it and I had never seen an Instructor’s Guide I ordered a full curriculum for my youngest two children. It was 1997 and we didn't have internet  access so I couldn't investigate what I was purchasing, but I knew from perusing the meager catalog that Sonlight was going to be perfect for us.

It was.

When I unpacked the box, lined the books up in the awaiting bookshelf and saw all the next full year of school all planned out and ready to start I was overwhelmed with gratitude.

Sonlight did the work for me.  The Instructor’s Guides  gave me back my life and more time to spend with my children. Instead of sitting at the kitchen table all by myself planning; my school time was spent teaching and learning alongside my children. No more sad and lonely evenings making plans, reserving books and scanning catalogs for me. From that day forward, for ten years until my youngest child graduated from our Sonlight homeschool, I never looked back.

My daughter-- A Sonlight graduate heading to college.

My daughter-- A Sonlight graduate heading to college.

Sonlight to me is great literature, time together with my children, minimal planning, being able to do the science experiments because I actually have the supplies, peace of mind, quiet mornings reading together and lively discussions following. Sonlight is academically strong and it taught me to teach my kids to critically think and to love to learn.

I am so glad I found it all those years ago. What is Sonlight to you?

Take care,

Jill

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Jill

About Jill

It is my passion to encourage homeschool families so that you can find joy in being a family that learns together. I have been married to the husband of my youth since 1975 and have homeschooled my five children for 17 years-most of the time with Sonlight Curriculum. Our youngest son graduated from our homeschool in 2007. I love the outdoors, baking, reading and, of course, chocolate-but mostly I love getting all my kids together in one place. Ahh, heaven on earth! I am currently enjoying my three young granddaughters.
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One Response to Sonlight to me…

  1. Sarah says:

    One of the things I really love about Sonlight is that it gives you a framework, which you can follow exactly, follow sort of, or change around to suit your needs. For example, I decided to add a bunch of books to Core B. Not so much because it *needs* more books, it's complete on its own, but because I thought it would be fun to spend some extra time in some of the civilizations we'll be covering, and because I'd like to make it last longer than the scheduled 10 months. So I was able to use Core B's schedule and structure and add some books and activities to stretch it out a little longer. Sonlight is flexible enough that you can easily skip a book here and there, or add a book in, with ease. But if you don't have time or think it fun to spend your evenings making curriculum plans, well, then, you don't have to. And you still have everything you need, ready to go.

    During the school year, I often don't even really look ahead to see what's coming up. Sometimes I'm curious and I'll flip through. But a lot of the times I'm just too busy to really be constantly reading notes and looking ahead. But I can trust that every day, when I'm ready to go, I can just grab my binder, flip it open, grab the books I need, and start!

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