8th grade homeschool can feel intimidating. It's the year right before high school and that's scary. You want to do this right and get your child prepared for the next step.
And then there are the hormones and attitude.
How are you supposed to engage and inspire your 8th grade homeschool student with their language arts when it's hard enough to get them to pick up a book to read for pleasure? Screen time and technology can make it so hard to compete for attention and focus!
With the right resources and homeschool mom support, you can grab your teen's attention and help them develop critical thinking skills as they get ready for high school courses.
Disclaimer: I received product for free and was compensated for my time. All opinions are 100% honest and a positive interview was not required.
Find out why I was happy to get my hands on Kendall Hunt RPD Pathways 2.0 to use with my 8th grade homeschool student and why it's a great resource for Christian homeschool families.
Our 8th Grade Homeschool Language Arts Challenge
I knew that 8th grade homeschool would present a challenge this year. I've been through this homeschooling through tween/teen years already with my oldest so have a bit of experience under my homeschool mom belt. And Professor, my 13-year-old, can be a tough nut to crack 😉
He's a history buff who loves the reading part of language arts. It's the other parts (writing, vocabulary, and spelling) that Professor would like to toss out the window.
Plus, Professor is going through that whole puberty thing + growth spurt that makes him a teen version of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. And those writing, vocabulary, and spelling parts of language arts can send him directly into Mr. Hyde mode.
Also, Professor likes having everything laid out in front of him. He's my checklist boy. His mind prefers sequential order with a logical reason for everything. Pretty much the opposite of how my brain works 😉
To prevent all that unpleasantness (learned my lesson the first time through!), I wanted 8th grade language arts that would engage and inspire Professor. He can be a bit
picky selective when it comes to reading books so I know quality and interest is a must.
So, yeah, a challenge.
Making 8th Grade Homeschool Language Arts Interesting & Inspirational
Professor has had the opportunity to use Pathways 2.0 Unit 1: Heroes for his 8th grade homeschool year.
The first thing that caught my eye about Pathways 2.0 was its focus on one anchor text per month. The anchor text for this unit is Noah Webster: Weaver of Words. The lovely illustrations and text strewn with interesting facts grabbed our history buff's attention. Professor likes to dive deep into his reading and this approach would also help reduce the overwhelm he feels when faced with too many choices or materials in front of him.
There are nine language arts themes in Pathways 2.0:
- My World
- Living Things
- Walking with God
- Friends and Family
- Personal Feelings
- Social Issues
Please note that Kendall Hunt RPD is Christian-based with an Adventist worldview.
The themes are inspirational and focus on getting kids to think about ways to apply these principles to their lives.
The pre-assessments and weekly assessments for vocabulary, spelling, reading, and writing are helpful ways to gather information about your child's progress. Also, examples of brainstorming, editing, and essays helped Professor understand what was expected of him for an assignment. He tends to panic a bit when he's not sure of what to do and examples reduce his stress so he can get to work.
Professor appreciated the variety of suggested activities, like graphic organizers and DIY word search, to keep it interesting. He particularly liked learning more about Greek and Latin Roots as part of his word study.
8th Grade Homeschool Help for Mom
As your kids get older, lesson planning can feel a bit more daunting. You wonder if you're covering enough and what type of activities to be doing to help your older child make age-level progress.
Although I'm not a big teacher's guide user, I do find it helpful to get new ideas and insights to share with my boys. I'm a relaxed, eclectic homeschooler that uses what works for our family at that current season of our lives. If a teacher's guide helps me do my job and do it well, I'm all for it 😉
This Kendall Hunt Pathways 2.0 teacher's daily lesson guide has saved me time and reduced my stress. Once I became familiar with the format and layout, I've found it easy-to-use and open-and-go. Priceless for a busy homeschool mom of 5 busy boys!
My suggestion is to focus on the independent or small-group lessons unless you're working with more than one child. You can also find awesome ideas in the whole-group lessons and modify to fit your needs.
The combination of vocabulary, spelling, reading, and writing all centered on one anchor text saves time (no searching for different books) and money (fewer materials to buy).
Now that my boys are older and all school-age, I'm finding resources like Kendall Hunt's Pathways 2.0 Language Arts to be invaluable in helping me maintain my sanity despite a busy schedule. If you're a Christian homeschooler looking for quality 8th grade homeschool language arts, I highly encourage you to check out this curriculum.
What are your concerns about 8th grade homeschool?
How could Kendall Hunt's Pathways 2.0 help you rock your homeschool?