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View Full Version : Who uses Heart of Dakota? Who uses My Father's World?


Michelle_M
01-09-2012, 09:31 AM
I'm really considering getting this set for my boys. I have a 4 yr old who I will start kindergarten with next year, and my 6 yr old.

So far we've just been focusing on reading and math, using Funnix. I figure that EVERYTHING else hangs on those two subjects, so I wanted DS1 to have a good grasp of those before throwing other subjects in.....

I think we're ready to add more in. I was debating between My Fathers World and Heart of Dakota.

Thoughts? Has anyone used both and have a preference?

God bless!

kjo
01-09-2012, 10:00 AM
We recently started using HOD. I have never used MFW but here is why I chose HOD...

-Lessons seem to be spelled out more clearly, I like the way the HOD book has boxes for each activity. The samples that I've read of MWF didn't seem to be laid out as well for the way my brain works ;)

-I've only looked at samples but HOD seems to have a stronger biblical focus which appeals to me.

-It looks like MFW gets much more expensive down the road than HOD.

-I'm leaning towards Singapore Math and HOD uses that program.

-Short lessons

-And probably most important of all to me...Simple, easy to find activities. I don't like having to buy special things for projects and so far we've had everything we need for HOD on hand in the house. I don't like searching for books, ant farms, etc. I work from home so I need something simple to pull out and use.

I was a little confused about how to order HOD until I got their catalog. It made things much more clear, especially for the older kiddos. I couldn't be happier with the choice. I was really trying to avoid unit studies b/c I thought it would be too much planning but my kids love them. I can see us using HOD all the way through. We all love it!

Michelle_M
01-09-2012, 11:13 AM
We recently started using HOD. I have never used MFW but here is why I chose HOD...

-Lessons seem to be spelled out more clearly, I like the way the HOD book has boxes for each activity. The samples that I've read of MWF didn't seem to be laid out as well for the way my brain works ;)

-I've only looked at samples but HOD seems to have a stronger biblical focus which appeals to me.

-It looks like MFW gets much more expensive down the road than HOD.

-I'm leaning towards Singapore Math and HOD uses that program.

-Short lessons

-And probably most important of all to me...Simple, easy to find activities. I don't like having to buy special things for projects and so far we've had everything we need for HOD on hand in the house. I don't like searching for books, ant farms, etc. I work from home so I need something simple to pull out and use.

I was a little confused about how to order HOD until I got their catalog. It made things much more clear, especially for the older kiddos. I couldn't be happier with the choice. I was really trying to avoid unit studies b/c I thought it would be too much planning but my kids love them. I can see us using HOD all the way through. We all love it!

Thank you so much for the insight! You've really made it seem like what I'm looking for. I'm great with planning and coordinating lessons, I want something that it's all just laid out and I just need to follow it.

I am also starting a WAHM business, so something the kids can do easily while I sit next to them and work.. so that I'm there when they need me but I don't have to hover, is awesome!

Also, my children are very "I can do it myself" types and are more excited about things that they don't need a lot of help with.

I also like that HOD seems like I can easily do two age groups at once. DS2 is 4 and DS3 is 6 1/2.

So again.. thanks!

God bless!

thirdtimemomma
01-09-2012, 11:31 AM
We use MFW. I looked at HOD but I felt my kids would be seperated eventually before i was ready for them to be. In MFW they are together for most subjects(History, Geography, Science and doing some LA type in there as well) till about 7th grade when they start thier own science program and in 9th grade they start highschool. I felt the transition was slower. I also think MFW is cheaper. I like MFW biblical world view and blend of classical and charlotte mason. They do have a book basket list that is meant for you to get books fromt he library. Some like that and others do not. I like it and MFW is complete with out the book basket books so I dont stress out about it.

LindsayNErik
01-09-2012, 06:54 PM
We are using HOD for my K'er. I love the boxes. I just read through them quickly while the kids eat lunch,and I'm ready to go (we school during naptime,while my little gal naps). I check off boxes as I go,and we sprinkle in the math and phonics with the fun activities. I am enjoying it so far. We are using Singapore essentials for math,and Christian Liberty Press Adventures in Phonics (which I wouldn't suggest for a boy,as it is a lot of writing).

MathGirl
01-09-2012, 08:15 PM
We started out this school year with MFW for my 3rd grader (tried it for the first time) and realized it was not a good fit for us. Just recently switched to HOD and it's perfect for us. Here is why HOD works better for us:
-No book basket! I couldn't keep up with going to the library and searching for books every week. And for us, the MFW program was not full enough without the book basket.

-MFW had more crafts, which filled the time, but my DD is not a big craft person and I would have rather had her use her time to learn in other ways. HOD fits the bill perfectly so far.

-The layout of the HOD guide is much easier for me to follow.

-HOD specifically teaches children to transition from relying on mom to be the teacher to independent work. In the Preparing guide (what we're using), it marks each activity with T (for teacher), S (for semi-independent) and I (independent). So if I get busy with my 2 preschoolers, I can just tell my 3rd grader to do the "I" boxes and it's all spelled out for her. LOVE this feature. My understanding is in each subsequent guide, there is more independent work and less teacher intensive work.

-I also love the way HOD does their LA- Charlotte Mason type studied dictation and copywork, but also Rod and Staff grammar. MFW starts LA at a much slower pace I believe (although you could substitute your own program).

I could probably go on, but I'll stop :) I am just excited that HOD seems to be such a great fit for our family (and I've tried so many curriculums!). Best of luck in your decision.

Michelle_M
01-10-2012, 11:17 AM
Thank you for all of the input. From looking at the HOD and MFW websites, and hearing what you all have to say, I think that HOD will fit my family better.

I will purchase next years curriculum at tax return time!!!

Thanks for taking the time to help.

God bless!

delicatefade
01-10-2012, 03:29 PM
This was so helpful! I may just have to look into HOD instead of My Father's World.

LindsayNErik
01-10-2012, 07:24 PM
Michelle- check out the welltrainedmind.com forums. I was able to buy the LHFHG on there for a fraction of the price,and then I just bought a few things I needed from Christianbook.com. It saved me a lot of money. HTH.

Michelle_M
01-10-2012, 09:12 PM
Michelle- check out the welltrainedmind.com forums. I was able to buy the LHFHG on there for a fraction of the price,and then I just bought a few things I needed from Christianbook.com. It saved me a lot of money. HTH.

What is LHFHG?

God bless!

lehcar_27
01-11-2012, 02:32 PM
Little Hearts for His Glory

we started pre K with MFW using their K cirr. but it was way too easy for my DD....we switched to HOD....she is using Bigger Hearts for His Glory....she is age 5.....i like HOD because you can totally do both kids at the same time....and each lesson is super short so you can take as many breaks as you need....HOD is so much easier to follow than MFW :2cents:

What is LHFHG?

God bless!

Michelle_M
01-11-2012, 09:12 PM
Little Hearts for His Glory

we started pre K with MFW using their K cirr. but it was way too easy for my DD....we switched to HOD....she is using Bigger Hearts for His Glory....she is age 5.....i like HOD because you can totally do both kids at the same time....and each lesson is super short so you can take as many breaks as you need....HOD is so much easier to follow than MFW :2cents:

Thank you so much. I had heard from other people also that MFW was fairly easy.. My 6 yr old is super smart I think that MFW might be too easy for him too.

Thanks for the input, as someone who has used both!

God bless!

gerka528
01-12-2012, 07:30 AM
We are switching to HOD next year. We are currently using Sonlight P3/4 and P4/5 and really enjoying it....but I don't think my oldest girls will be ready to tackle Core A together next year when they are just turning 5 and early 6. I ordered LHTH for my 2 turning 3 year old and Little hearts and Beyond for my bigger girls. I'm hoping to combine them, but haven't decided which to use yet. According to the placement charts they are each in their own level. Can't wait for the boxes to come on Tuesday and really get to check everything out!!

Does anyone have any words of wisdom on combining??

HeatherlovesCDs
01-12-2012, 08:14 AM
I think we are switching from MFW to HOD next year. We are using K this this year. While I really love it in theory, I'm not loving it in practice. Plus, I am finding that I think it isn't enough. He needs more than this is offering. I've already added a math to the program even though it incorporates math.

Good luck! :)

MathGirl
01-12-2012, 11:59 AM
We are switching to HOD next year. We are currently using Sonlight P3/4 and P4/5 and really enjoying it....but I don't think my oldest girls will be ready to tackle Core A together next year when they are just turning 5 and early 6. I ordered LHTH for my 2 turning 3 year old and Little hearts and Beyond for my bigger girls. I'm hoping to combine them, but haven't decided which to use yet. According to the placement charts they are each in their own level. Can't wait for the boxes to come on Tuesday and really get to check everything out!!

Does anyone have any words of wisdom on combining??

I would probably use Little Hearts for both your girls. The right side of the guide (basics-math, LA, etc.) has plans for both K and 1st grade. You could just use K materials for the 5 year old and 1st materials for the 6 y.o. and combine them on the left side (history, storytime, etc.) Or you could do left side of Little Hands with both girls and do right side with your 5 y.o. (either the K or 1st materials) and then do the right side of Beyond for your 6 y.o. I hope this makes sense.

mercy589
01-16-2012, 07:22 PM
We used MFW K and 1st and then switched to HOD and are loving it. I wasn't a
fan of MFW 1st ... I've written a few blog posts that might be helpful -
our thoughts on switching:

http://onelittlewordsheknew.blogspot.com/2011/02/switching.html


We used LHFHG to finish out the school year and then started Beyond this fall.
http://onelittlewordsheknew.blogspot.com/2011/02/little-hearts-for-his-glory-wee\
k-2.html

Thoughts on Beyond-
http://onelittlewordsheknew.blogspot.com/2012/01/homeschool-update-beyond-little\
-hearts.html

Hope some of that is helpful! :)

kjo
01-16-2012, 08:27 PM
We used MFW K and 1st and then switched to HOD and are loving it. I wasn't a
fan of MFW 1st ... I've written a few blog posts that might be helpful -
our thoughts on switching:

http://onelittlewordsheknew.blogspot.com/2011/02/switching.html


We used LHFHG to finish out the school year and then started Beyond this fall.
http://onelittlewordsheknew.blogspot.com/2011/02/little-hearts-for-his-glory-wee\
k-2.html

Thoughts on Beyond-
http://onelittlewordsheknew.blogspot.com/2012/01/homeschool-update-beyond-little\
-hearts.html

Hope some of that is helpful! :)

Thanks for posting this. I totally agree with ALL of your reasons for switching. When I was reading through the MFW curriculum and saw "present information on insects" I thought "nope, not for me!"...I also need a more structured curriculum for the stage we are in. I have a friend that thinks HOD is so boring b/c it spells everything out for you. She is leaning towards Konos which sounds terrifying to me!

Thanks for sharing your blog...you have your reasons laid out very clearly for those deciding between the two.

mercy589
01-16-2012, 08:33 PM
Oy, yeah, Konos is not for me either. lol :) Glad you think its helpful!

apurkeyp
01-17-2012, 08:06 AM
I am seriously considering switching to HOD. My almost 6 year old is doing mostly 1st grade work so I need to find out where to place her. Has anyone called HOD? Will they help you with that? I looked at the placement guide and I think she will do best with Beyond but maybe Little?

Michelle_M
01-17-2012, 08:44 AM
I have a friend who LOVES Konos.

Why are the two of you against it? Just curious. I had never heard of it before.

God bless!

kjo
01-17-2012, 11:11 AM
I have a friend who LOVES Konos.

Why are the two of you against it? Just curious. I had never heard of it before.

God bless!

I'm not really against it, it would just never work for me. It is a huge phone book thick size resource with tons of ideas. As I understand it, you could never actually accomplish all the ideas in the book but they are a starting point. It seems really overwhelming to me. I like a book with our daily tasks laid out and I accomplish them each day. I think I'd be frustrated by how much there is and never really get around to anything.

mercy589
01-17-2012, 08:06 PM
Yeah, same thing. I don't do well with having to figure out which activities to do when and which ones to leave out, etc.

Re calling HOD, sure, go for it! They are very nice. You can ask on their message board as well and Julie (the author's sister) will probably respond to you eventually. :)

Michelle_M
01-17-2012, 08:08 PM
I'm not really against it, it would just never work for me. It is a huge phone book thick size resource with tons of ideas. As I understand it, you could never actually accomplish all the ideas in the book but they are a starting point. It seems really overwhelming to me. I like a book with our daily tasks laid out and I accomplish them each day. I think I'd be frustrated by how much there is and never really get around to anything.

Yeah, same thing. I don't do well with having to figure out which activities to do when and which ones to leave out, etc.

Re calling HOD, sure, go for it! They are very nice. You can ask on their message board as well and Julie (the author's sister) will probably respond to you eventually. :)

Yeah... I don't think Konos would be for me then. The whole reason I want to get an all-together curriculum, is so that I don't have to stress.. I want the guidance...not the headaches. Sounds like HOD is going to be the way to go for me!

Thanks for the info!

God bless!

dolphingirl
01-17-2012, 10:54 PM
I used to be a total KONOS mom--I love it, and in theory, still believe the hands-on methods it incorporates is the best way to learn. The drawback is that sometimes, it's very easy to do a whole slew activities without a definite learning goal in mind. I think one's learning objectives need to be clear to both the mom and kids. Anyways, getting off topic!
As I had more kids (expecting #6) and life got busier, I've switched to Heart of Dakota because it's all planned out, it incorporates the Bible extensively, and it utilizes wonderful literature, all important things to me. My 6th grade son is just finishing up Creation to Christ and has learned and grown a great deal. It's a wonderful fit for him because he wants to be independent (and needs to be since all these kids keep me hopping!) yet we still get to enjoy things like storytime together. He has really thrived with this program and has much to show for his accomplishments-- a beautiful history notebook and a huge stack of watercolor paintings, just to mention a couple. So much neater than a finished workbook that ends up in the recycling bin!! We're both looking forward to him starting Resurrection to Reformation in a few weeks. It looks wonderful.

I've used Little Hands to Heaven (twice) with two of my kids at the age of four--unfortunately we never finished it. I'm not sure if it's the program itself or just my lack of consistency. In the end, we've always ended up preferring reading good picture books together, playing little phonics games and doing the beginning Explode the Code books, and doing the thinking skill books from the Critical Thinking Company. There are a lot of wonderful things about the program. I think one thing that always threw me off a bit was the rhymes--some of them flowed wonderfully but some of them seemed forced and stilted.

I tried Little Hands to Heaven with one of my kids. We didn't last long. I don't care for History for Little Pilgrims, and Reddy Fox just wasn't a favorite for us. We just didn't "click" with the program. However, I know many people love it!

We are currently using Beyond Little Hearts and enjoying it for the most part, and I own Preparing but haven't used it yet. My 9 year old will use it for fourth grade next year, and it looks wonderful! Overall, I have to say that our love of HOD increases as we get to the higher up levels. They are just incredibly written and use amazing resources.

I think part of my feelings about the younger levels don't really necessarily have anything to do with HOD, but rather it's because of my feeling that I like to use the "little" years to focus more on unit studies about topics that interest young children rather than jumping into a history-based study so soon.

shabbychicmomma
01-20-2012, 11:57 PM
I have never heard of HOD but we use MFW and I love it! I also have 4 close friends who use/love it too. I had thought of Konos but this seemed a better fit for my learning/teaching style. It's a unit study-charlotte mason style and love that.
Good luck in your decision, I know it can be so hard!

DrusL8y
01-23-2012, 04:28 PM
I really wanted to love MFW AND HOD but we just couldn't swing 'em! What everyone is saying is absolutely true about both curriculums. You just have to decide how involved you want to be AND where your child is in terms of assessment. I must say though that I love the set-up of HOD! It's amazing! But we don't love the content. Kinda on the Boring Side for us! MFW was great but it was too slow! If I could combine the two of them, it would be incredible! Despite my review, at the moment we are doing our own thing. I never thought that I would be doing it this way! I used to be soo terrified! But we're using Five in a Row, Science in a Bag, Singapore Math, Writing Strands, and Mystery of History. We've realized that we like learning and we get bored with "standard" stuff. Five in a Row keeps it interesting and keeps us asking questions that we enjoy finding out together! Also, the library gives us an outing every week! My son is 5 and will be 6 in Feb but on assessments, he's in the 2nd-3rd grade range for reading and comprehension, 2nd grade for writing, and 2nd grade for math and conceptual thinking. So most curriculums we looked at were waaay too easy (ie boring) or seemed like we had missed something because of how ahead they were. Also, we are a Bible-loving family, so we learn about the Bible as easy as breathing! Just always talking about it and all the stories!

Another thing that I think is fitting to mention is what are you trying to convey through home education to your child(ren)? Most of the curriculums have a vision. I say find one that speaks to your family's passions and make it work! Our goal with our kids will always be to ask questions, love to find the answers, and refuse to accept that they've learned it all. DH and I just don't like how a lot of the material put out is information that is irrelevant, dated, or taught at the wrong time. We're heavy into missions and want to create a foundation that'll keep learning flexible.

Also, I would be lying if I said that all of this was uber-easy cuz it's not! Every other day I'm questioning if I'm doing the right thing because of how much time I have to put into our lessons each week. We plan on having a larger family and right now with kids under 5, time is at a premium. Just recently I revisited HOD, considering purchasing something just for a break. But at this point, his learning levels are just too scattered for him to go back to letter tracing or to burden him with work that's beyond him. I don't know! Lately, I've just been winging it and doing stuff as we feel like it. It's working, but the perfectionist in me is taking a beating! lol I hope that something that I said was of any help...I realize I'm rambling....Whatever you decide, remember it's YOUR child and as long as you teach them their relation to their world, who they are, and how to treat others, you're on the right track. Everything will fall in place! Stay encouraged ladies!

stephcrouse
04-24-2012, 07:35 PM
I'm trying to decide between these two curricula for this coming school year with my DDs (2nd and 8th grade). Any input on using HOD for the upper grade levels?

bakerbottoms
04-27-2012, 09:47 PM
I'm looking into these for my 5 yr old for K this coming year. He has been doing Abeka in his prek class this year but seems behind for what he should know. He still doesn't recognize all his letters upper & lower case. He gets them mixed up alot. Or he will tell me what a letter is & the next time have no clue what it is. Forget site words. He knows all of his numbers. His teacher said he got over looked with not knowing his abc bc he can write them all excellently, he can copy anything. She told me this after his K assessment in March. When I asked her how we could help to learn them she said she didn't know . I haven't loved his teacher this year. Thus why I'm considering HS. What are the pros & cons of each of these curriculum?

Jen's_4
04-28-2012, 08:08 PM
I just got back from my first homeschooling convention and I bought MFW. I totally love the looks of it. So hands on, and I LOVE how the upper grades combine. This is our first curric purchase and I can't wait for it to come in the mail!!

stephcrouse
04-28-2012, 08:16 PM
I'm excited to go to my first convention next weekend...I plan on just going as a shopper vs listening to all of the speakers, etc. I just want to get my hands on some of the teachers manuals for MFW!
Hands on sounds great, as I know my girls will love crafty stuff.