Are you or your child unhappy with your curriculum? When do you decide to change the curriculum?
If you are unhappy with the curriculum you have chosen for your child, you must decide what it is you dislike about it. Is it the teaching style? Or perhaps the books are not interesting or the schedule isn’t working? There’s no point in jumping into another curriculum if you don’t know what it is you want.
Is it the curriculum or the child?
And by the child, I don’t mean to place blame on the child but you may need to evaluate if the curriculum is suited to your child’s learning style. Are there visual or learning issues that should be addressed? Is the child placed at the correct level? You don’t want to choose based purely on grade level, you need to meet the child at the level he is working at in order for him to learn. If he is placed too high, it will be too challenging and result in tears, if he is placed too low, your child may become bored.
Perhaps, your child just needs time to mature and no matter what curriculum you use, you are going to run into the same problems. If you bring out the book and your child breaks into tears, something is definitely wrong. Either case now is a good time to take a break to evaluate things. Play games instead of completing a curriculum while you figure things out.
Can you change or tweak the curriculum to suit your needs?
A curriculum is a tool for you to use, it does not have to be done exactly as written. If you have a child who hates writing, have them do it orally. If they get the concept, there’s no need to do 15 more questions on the exact same topic. Make the curriculum work for you, you are not a slave to it. The world won’t end if you don’t complete pages 10-15 this week and leave it until later. If it doesn’t work, see if you can adapt it to something that will work for your family.
If you are sure that you will be making a change, look through samples thoroughly before you decide. Sleep on it, and then go back to look at it again and then make the purchase.
Sometimes a curriculum change will solve a lot of problems, but don’t change just because you’ve heard of a brand new curriculum that everyone else is raving about it. You will need to evaluate when the time comes to make a curriculum change.
Be sure to read the rest of my post in the Ultimate List of Homeschooling Questions series.