“I had never imagined that homeschooling could be so fun and engaging! Using the thematic approach provided in the Magical Tapestry, my students made connections across disciplines, while discovering the rich stories and cultures of our global community. This is one of the best homeschooling curriculums available. It is adaptable to multiple grade levels. It has helped to shape me as an educator as well as sparking the curiosity of my children. Our journey with the Magical Tapestry has enriched our family’s passion for learning about the world around us, and has given us the framework and flexibility to discover the things that bring us joy.”
-Valley Oaks Charter School educator since 2008 -
The Magical Tapestry curriculum changed the way I view and approach education – and life all together. The key to my success as a homeschooling teacher has been thematic teaching and learning. I have realized that a child’s education does not take place during specific hours of the day or in a designated place. It happens every minute of every day. When the world is your classroom, there aren’t any limits to what you’ll discover.
This hands-on homeschool curriculum can be adapted for multi-grades. Although it is geared towards 2nd -3rd grades, children grades 1-4 can happily learn together. It is centered around only the best children’s literature. The books are of high interest and easy to expand upon. Why have separate curriculums for writing, grammar, spelling, history, and science with no connection to each other? When concepts are studied and looked at through a holistic lens, connections are made and learning is far more memorable. When kids understand that everything in our world is connected, they grasp a bigger, more meaningful and greater understanding of the world around them.
No textbooks! Just beautifully written and illustrated trade books. A typical week might include reading a cultural myth from Mexico that explains the origin of a volcano. The child learns vocabulary words, spelling, and grammar concepts from this trade book. The science focuses on volcanoes. The history is about the people of Mexico – their clothing, customs, arts, housing, and food. A few Spanish words are introduced and practiced. A Mexican recipe is prepared and tasted. Beautiful fiesta placemats are woven. A model volcano is built and then chemicals added for an eruption. All of these activities culminate with a field trip to a Mexican section of town, like Olvera Street in downtown Los Angeles. The possibilities are endless!
As a new homeschool parent and mother, I thought my job was going to be to teach my kids the things that I already knew. I was so wrong! My job is to learn and discover right alongside them. We never stop learning. My goal is to create lifelong learners who can make connections with the world. The Magical Tapestry was my first step on that journey!
-homeschooling parent of four children for 10 years with California Teaching Credential and 3 years of experience with 6th graders-
The homeschooling journey seemed quite daunting to me when I began 15 years ago as a young mother of two small children, ages 6 and 9. Can I teach? How do I teach? What should I do? Where do I start? There were so many questions! Then along came our charter school teacher and mentor, our ‘Ms. Frizzle’, Linda Smith, with the guidance I needed and thematic teaching! Why not teach all subject areas using an integrated approach connected to a continent and its countries? This focused my mom/teacher brain. I can do this!
We joined the homeschool adventures on the Magical Tapestry by traveling the world continent by continent, studying the animals, the culture, the food, the art, the music, and the people. By reading wonderful picture books, cooking up tasty foods, creating gorgeous artwork, and listening to music, we learned so much about each place. We read, we wrote, we counted, we experimented, we explored, we played, we learned! This was an extremely rewarding educational experience for our family. My adult kids still remember many of the engaging things we did during those years, especially when we ‘traveled’ to Africa and Antarctica!
Years later, as I develop curriculum for my own preschool and pre-K program, thematic teaching is my ‘go-to’ teaching approach. I find this to be such an exciting way to capture the attention of the kids based on a certain topic for the day, or week, or month. Inside and outside the classroom, we are wrapped up in the theme in some way. As an early childhood educator, my students and I have benefitted tremendously from the thematic teaching approach. The Magical Tapestry changed the way I educated my children and the way I teach the young children who come to me.
-past homeschool mom, currently owner/instructor of Poppy Hill Preschool
The Magical Tapestry thematic curriculum changed our lives, the way I taught, and the way my children learned. I started my homeschool journey seven years ago. The teacher at the public school felt that my daughter, Isabel, was too young to attend kindergarten. I could easily see how bright she was so I made the decision to educate her myself. I began with an online program but by mid-year, Isabel and I were both burned out.
Then I found a public charter school with certified teachers who worked with the kids and taught workshops for parents. Here I met Linda with her incredible homeschool curriculum, Magical Tapestry. I learned to think of education in a new way - not as separated topics of study but as interrelated subjects woven into a tapestry. Suddenly, EVERYTHING became a learning experience!
We traveled around the world during Isabel’s 2nd and 3rd grade years. One of the places we studied was China. We read The Silk Princess, pulling from the story vocabulary, nouns, pronouns, verbs, and sentence structure. We observed the life cycle of silk worms (growing silk worms from eggs). We read about the history of silk and its impact throughout the world. We dined at a Chinese restaurant tasting new flavors. We learned that the first kites were made of silk which led us to doing experiments about flight and making our own kite based on our flight experiments. Finally, on a windy day, we went to the park to fly our kite. What a priceless memory!
By the end of my daughter’s 4th grade year, she scored well on the state standardized tests, reading at the 9th grade level. My daughter now has an unquenchable curiosity. She often finds additional books and searches the internet for more information after our day’s lessons.
Linda’s holistic approach and her integrated curriculum gave me the confidence and direction to become the teacher that my children needed to engage them in learning. Wherever we go, whatever we do, there is something new to discover.
The Magical Tapestry is one of the best homeschool curriculums for 2nd -4th graders. Children explore the world through beautiful literature and song; engage in hands-on art, math and science activities; eat and smell new flavors - never aware that they are learning the whole time. Any parent seeking an engaging curriculum, look no farther. Jump in and experience the wonders of the Magical Tapestry Homeschool Curriculum!
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