A Beka

 
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Do you recognize the terms spiral approach, learning preferences, and cross-subject integration?

Because you’re in the driver’s seat, not your children, it means your kids aren’t running you.

Read on for some quick explanations and—more importantly—to find out why those methods make your job easier.

  • Abeka’s Spiral approach—building from the simple to the complex, with frequent review and application within each grade and from grade to grade.
    • This means you prevent learning gaps from the first day you teach with Abeka until the last.
    • The work you put in now pays off later (like when thoroughly teaching and reviewing multiplication tables saves your child from dreading math).
    • Since repetition is the key to learning, concepts are truly learned—and remembered.
    • Because concepts aren’t presented just one time, or in one way, it means you’re giving your child multiple opportunities to be successful.
    • Rough days are less stressful when you realize you don’t have just ONE CHANCE to make sure your child understands a concept.
  • Learning preferences—when faced with the 3 major learning styles (auditory, visual, and kinesthetic, or hearing, seeing, and doing), learning preferences are how you prefer, if given a choice, to learn something. Instead of favoring 1 and neglecting the others, we incorporate all 3.
    • By using all 3, you’re teaching your children to be adaptable, resilient learners.
    • You’re preparing them for college and real life.
    • You’re not putting your children—or yourself—in a learning-preferences box.
    • You don’t have to feel guilty because you don’t use a different curriculum for each child.
    • You’re doing what the best teachers do to help their students learn.
  • Cross-subject integration—pulling in concepts from 1 subject into several others to reinforce concepts and tie learning together
    • Learning comes to life more with cross-subject integration (like when students learn about Abraham Lincoln in history, read about him in language arts, do an art project with pennies and top hats, and write a story using what they know).
    • Children feel a sense of familiarity and accomplishment when they see something they already learned (like spelling words) “pop up” in another subject (like science or literature).
    • It engages curiosity and emphasizes the big picture.

User reviews

16 reviews

 
(9)
 
(2)
 
(3)
 
(1)
 
(1)
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Personal opinion 
 
3.8
Coverage of subject 
 
4.1
Ease of use 
 
3.8
Support 
 
4.3
Overall rating 
 
4.5
Personal opinion 
 
4.0
Coverage of subject 
 
5.0
Ease of use 
 
4.5

I’ve been using abeka since my oldest started 6 years ago on preschool. Now I have a 4th grader, 2nd grader, and preschooler doing Abeka. I really like Abeka because of how thorough it is in every subject, I don’t feel like anything has been left out. Some of the lessons are a bit time consuming and repetitive the higher we get in grade level, but my children are definitely grasping the concepts. With the more gilders I have to teach, the more I realize that Abeka is designed to lead to self-teaching. My children manage very well to do the lessons alone and without help most of the time allowing me time with the younger one. I’ll continue to use Abeka until my children graduate.

Grade levels used
  • preK
  • K
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
Pros
Very thorough
Cons
Can be time consuming
Do you recommend?
Absolutely
J
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Overall rating 
 
4.9
Personal opinion 
 
5.0
Coverage of subject 
 
5.0
Ease of use 
 
5.0
Support 
 
4.5

As a former homeschool kid, my Mom used all kinds of different curriculum. I personally, liked Abeka the best and am using it now for my 2 daughters. I did 6-10th grades as a studnet, and have done K3-K with my own children. I love that you can customize it to fit what you need. I did the DVDs as a teen and enjoyed them, but I liked the parent led approach best and that is what I am doing with my children now (more one on one time with the kids, and much shorter days).
There are lots of FB Abeka support groups, which is wonderful. You can also call Abeka to have any questions answered. A lot of people say that Abeka is Christian school at home, but you have to tweek it to make it work for you. We are FAR less structured than that, and we love it!

Grade levels used
  • preK
  • K
  • 6
  • 7
  • 8
  • 9
  • 10
Pros
Everything is laid out for you
Cons
Could be too much structure for some
Do you recommend?
For sure!
TG
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Overall rating 
 
4.1
Personal opinion 
 
4.0
Coverage of subject 
 
4.5
Ease of use 
 
5.0
Support 
 
3.0

I have used Abeka 4 years and my son has never wanted to use anything else. He is one who likes to be tested on what he’s learned. So we like having the tests. I cut out the seatwork and sometimes only have him do half the questions on a page. It’s too much if you do all the teacher books recommend. My son works independently and I just ask him the questions. So he basically teaches himself using the workbooks explanations and examples. If you are a traditional homeschooler then I highly recommend Abeka!

Grade levels used
  • K
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
Pros
Easy to use
Cons
Expensive new.
Do you recommend?
Yes
T
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Overall rating 
 
2.8
Personal opinion 
 
3.0
Coverage of subject 
 
3.5
Ease of use 
 
2.0

Abeka is a LOT of busy work. It is also thorough. I used it for my first, who absolutely hated it. After about 5 months our first year we made a complete change. (I should mention that she went to private school K-2, where they used Abeka). I finally realized why she was not thriving in school. Abeka is not for every child. But, I did use the reading/phonics for my second when we started K with her. I knew it was good, and it gave her a good foundation.

Grade levels used
  • K
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
Do you recommend?
Yes
BC
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Overall rating 
 
4.5
Personal opinion 
 
4.5
Coverage of subject 
 
5.0
Ease of use 
 
4.0
Support 
 
4.5

Abeka is a great curriculum, but it is not for every child. My oldest thrived in it, but my younger son struggled. It moves very quickly so a child can fall behind easily if they are not grasping the concepts. Lots of writing and busy work, but that can be easily adjusted. I definitely don't think that any phonics curriculum can hold a candle to abeka!

Grade levels used
  • K
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 6
Pros
Thorough, Visually appealing
Cons
Pricey, Lots of writing and busy work
Do you recommend?
Yes, for some kids
E
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Overall rating 
 
0.8
Personal opinion 
 
0.5
Coverage of subject 
 
1.5
Ease of use 
 
0.5

I used it 13 years ago for my oldest daughter. We used the DVD series. She hated it. I hated their PE course requirements. I will never look at their curriculum again.

Grade levels used
10
Pros
All in one boxed curriculum
Cons
Overpriced, not flexible, terrible DVD lessons.
Do you recommend?
No
R
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Overall rating 
 
5.0
Personal opinion 
 
5.0
Coverage of subject 
 
5.0
Ease of use 
 
5.0
Support 
 
5.0

So thankful to have found A Beka at the beginning of our homeschool journey! The review and spiral approach is outstanding. I love that it is a Christian based curriculum but not over the top. Highly recommend A Beka!

Grade levels used
  • preK
  • K
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 6
  • 7
  • 9
Pros
Easy to use, total coverage of all areas, boxed set availability
Cons
Only con would be price however, it is totally worth the cost!
Do you recommend?
Highly recommend!
H
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Overall rating 
 
5.0
Personal opinion 
 
5.0
Coverage of subject 
 
5.0
Ease of use 
 
5.0

We currently use them, parent led, for 1st, I have used them for kindergarten and will be returning to them for kindergarten this year and second grade. Their math and phonics are phenomenal and build a strong foundation, there is a lot of repetition but you can really mix it up and it helps really drill those important concepts in. There is some ‘busy’ work but if I feel that my child has a good understanding of what’s being taught we skip it or implement it in some other fun ways. Abeka is awesome for our family because I’m terrible at organizing and really good at procrastinating lol so to have everything already laid out for me, it takes the guess work out and a lot off my workload in the terms of lesson planning. I was reading above that said Abeka’s help with the teaching part disappears around the third grade, which makes me sad, because this is the main reason we have choosen Abeka as our sole curriculum. I plan to investigate this further and if that’s the case we will sadly be switching.

Grade levels used
  • K
  • 1
Pros
Thorough, Ease of Use, Strong Math & Phonics
Cons
Price (but you’re paying for convenience), Busy Work (which can easily be omitted or swapped)
Do you recommend?
Absolutely
AD
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Overall rating 
 
4.9
Personal opinion 
 
5.0
Coverage of subject 
 
4.5
Ease of use 
 
5.0
Support 
 
5.0

I don’t really have any cons for Abeka except for maybe price. Buying new can be expensive but the good thing is you can buy used.

We love Abeka. All of my kids do great with it. It is easy to Teach as the instructor guides have everything written out for you. I love the spiral approach. Abeka is a excellent curriculum.

Grade levels used
  • preK
  • K
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
Pros
Christian, easy to use
Cons
Price
Do you recommend?
Yes
S
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 0 0
Overall rating 
 
4.8
Personal opinion 
 
5.0
Coverage of subject 
 
4.5
Ease of use 
 
4.5
Support 
 
5.0

Some find A Beka to be repetitive, but I feel the constant review is great. If your child has a good foundation, you can skip the review. A Beka provides a solid academic background

Grade levels used
  • K
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 6
  • 7
  • 8
  • 9
  • 10
  • 11
  • 12
Pros
Solid foundations in all subjects
Do you recommend?
Yes
AJ
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Overall rating 
 
4.2
Personal opinion 
 
4.0
Coverage of subject 
 
4.5
Ease of use 
 
4.0

We use Abeka and love it! We use Christian Liberty for the first couple years, then Abeka for the rest. I don't like their Bible program (expensive, and I don't like the format). All the rest is super thorough! It reviews every day, or every week and does a great job at drilling the information home, which my kids seem to need. It is heavy on paperwork, but I like that to a point, and once the child has mastered something, I often skip sections of that, like a review in math. The history, in particular, can be dry. When the kids' eyes start to glaze over, I read from the book while the kiddos act out the battles or whatever, or play it out with army men...whatever works. They retain the info so much better that way.

Grade levels used
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 6
  • 7
  • 8
  • 9
  • 10
  • 11
  • 12
Pros
Lots of review, very thorough
Cons
dry
Do you recommend?
yes
M
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Overall rating 
 
2.7
Personal opinion 
 
3.0
Coverage of subject 
 
3.0
Ease of use 
 
2.0

It’s a great curriculum but not for children who need kinesthetic stimulation. It doesn’t have enough hands on learning for children who learn through this method. It’s great for homeschools that want to follow a school-at-home approach and use workbooks. It’s academically rigorous.

Grade levels used
  • K
  • 1
  • 2
Pros
Christian, Everything laid out
Cons
Too much book work
Do you recommend?
No
B
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Overall rating 
 
2.0
Personal opinion 
 
2.5
Coverage of subject 
 
1.5
Ease of use 
 
2.0

I really did love the K5 curriculum. My son really liked it. The books were colourful and lovely. He breezed through the math.

The grades 4 and 5 math has too many questions for one lesson and not enough questions in what the lesson is about. My kids hated math time.

Grade levels used
  • K
  • 4
  • 5
Pros
Loved the K5 program. My son did very well with it.
Cons
The 4 and 5 curriculum was busy work and my children didn’t enjoy it at all. Math program was not what my kids needed at all.
Do you recommend?
Finding someone who has used it and really look it over before buying it.
K
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Overall rating 
 
4.6
Personal opinion 
 
3.5
Coverage of subject 
 
5.0
Ease of use 
 
5.0
Support 
 
5.0

We started using Abeka in our second year of homeschooling, and stuck with it for math and language arts for three years. The program gives a fantastic foundation! It utilizes the spiral approach, so my kids were constantly reviewing previously learned material everyday. Most important to us was the strong Christian worldview, which is VERY prevalent in this curriculum. The lesson plans for each subject also make this curriculum super easy for even a newbie to teach, as everything is scripted for each lesson. Oh, and you also don’t have to worry about the dreaded Common Core with Abeka!!

Please keep in mind that this curriculum was originally written for use in a school setting though. That means that there is a TON of busywork, meant to keep kids busy who finish before the rest of a classroom. For a newer homeschooler, it can be kind of scary to veer away from the lesson plans and make the curriculum work for them. There’s also the cost factor. The majority of student books for Abeka are consumable, meaning that you can’t reuse them for younger students (workbook-based for math, English, etc). There are also the yearly updates to different grades. While it’s not impossible to match the previous editions to the current ones, it can be a pain in the rear.

So yes, I would recommend this curriculum, but Abeka isn’t the only game in town like I once thought it was. Research all of your options before staying solely with Abeka.

Grade levels used
  • K
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Pros
Strong foundation, excellent phonics program
Cons
Too much busywork, can be very expensive, especially with multiple kids
Do you recommend?
Yes and no
SS
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful to you? 0 0
Overall rating 
 
2.8
Personal opinion 
 
2.5
Coverage of subject 
 
3.5
Ease of use 
 
2.5
Support 
 
2.5

I love the K-2 math, language, reading, spelling. At about 3rd grade, the teacher help books seem to disappear and all that is available is answer keys. It seems they expect you to get the teaching DVD because there is this underlying tone that they don’t think parents can/should teach but the homeschool market is too lucrative to ignore, so they funnel you into needing the teaching dvds. Also, their sales reps never have the teacher books available to look at at conventions, so you don’t really know if you are getting what you need when you order. We don’t use any of it after 2nd grade because of these frustrations.

One last note, we found the scope too narrow and the sequence too fast in the math. Another reason we moved away from Abeka.

Grade levels used
  • preK
  • K
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
Pros
Colorful, spiral-method in math
Cons
Lack of teacher support in the teacher books after 2nd grade.
Do you recommend?
Early elementary grades only
K
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Overall rating 
 
4.8
Personal opinion 
 
4.5
Coverage of subject 
 
5.0
Ease of use 
 
5.0

I have 5 kids, and we've used many curricula the last 5 years. We mostly just use the reading books, but my 8yo is using arithmetic 2, and she loves it. I tried a lot of different things for math with her, and this is the best.

Grade levels used
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 6
  • 7
  • 8
  • 9
Do you recommend?
Yes
LC
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