A Review of Calvert Curriculum

By: Vera

Let me just give you a quick synopsis of what I like and what I don’t like about Calvert so far. I’ve been using the curriculum for about a year with my 2nd and 4th grader.

What I like:

I really like how everything comes together in one package. The books are colorful and the teacher’s manual is fairly straightforward and easy to understand. I really like the little checklists that come at the beginning of each lesson. It is very helpful for my girls to have a checklist which they can check off.

So far, I have really appreciated their math program. I like how the concepts are explained in small, easy to understand increments. There are lots of extra activity ideas and follow-up practice.  We’re not into really difficult math concepts yet so I’m doing okay with it. We’ll see what 5th grade brings!

Overall, I also like more of the broader focus of the curriculum. Even though it’s made in America, it seems to have a broader view of the world than other curriculum I’ve heard of. I’ve also enjoyed the emphasis on critical thinking skills which are so important, especially for children who are growing up in a society where conformity and memorization are emphasized.

What I don’t like:

Well, Calvert isn’t a Christian based curriculum. Keeping that in mind though is helpful. So far, I haven’t found any anti-Christian themes or anything that really goes against our beliefs. The only thing I’ve struggled with is the Science book which is a standard textbook you will find in many American schools. By keeping the girls well-versed in Creation-based science, this really hasn’t been an issue for us so far. In fact, it’s been good to compare the two. I think it’s wise for the girls to know what they will be up against when they head off to college (if they so choose) someday.

Other drawbacks are price and the amount of material presented.  Some of the lessons, if you do everything, would take days to complete.  Also, it was easy for us to get stuck in math (which is at the beginning of the day) if the concept is difficult to grasp. So it has taken us awhile to get through the material. It is definitely thorough.  So I’m learning to pick and choose what I think is necessary. Both of my girls are behind one grade level for their age so I don’t feel too guilty about leaving something out that I think they already have a good handle on.

If anyone ever decides they want to try Calvert, I would advise to order the test and answer booklet which comes separately.  Unfortunately, the only tests that come with the curriculum package are for the ATS (Advisory Teaching Service) which is terribly expensive but good if you want to have feedback and a certificate of completion. These are hard to grade since there are no answer keys. Having the extra set of tests helps at test time which are given after every 20 lessons.

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Here is a link for Calvert.

Here are other reviews from homeschoolreviews.com: http://www.homeschoolreviews.com/reviews/curriculum/reviews.aspx?id=53.

Here are other articles on this blog that may interest you:

Reasons to Modify Curriculum

Mixing and Matching Curriculum

Sonlight Curriculum–Making it work for you (This might help you learn how to make other curricula work for you–and not overwhelm you with surplus).

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3 thoughts on “A Review of Calvert Curriculum

  1. Pingback: Five Basic Types of Curriculum « The Education Cafe

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