Creating you own curriculum is not for everyone, but if you are looking for something new that the boxed curriculums are not offering, than this is a fun alternative. It takes some time, and inginuity to create your own curriculum, but the advantages far outweigh the disadvantages and what some may call an inconvenience. When creating your own curriculum, you can changes things around quite easily. If you find a resource that you like better than the one you are currently using,it can be esily implemented as opposed to having to conform to the order of a boxed curriculum.
Here is an example of how I have created a Cross curriulum for my daughter that works.
First we pick out the literature selections for the quarter. Our goal is to finish up to 6 books per quarter. Her vocabulary and spelling lessons are incorporated into the literature. By looking up the unknown words she encounters in her literature, she builds her vocabulary. shen then looks up the words in the dictionary and writes the deinitions. If she comes across a definition that is vague or complex, we explain the definition and she then writes in her her own words so that she can have a better understanding. Sometimes we may even look in the thesaurus for similar words and opposites.The words also become her spelling words for the week. Depending on how many chapters are in the book, we usually read 2-3 chapters per week. Her vocabulary words are also used for her spelling words in which we test her at the end of he week. She may spell them orally or write them down. Our children's curriculum is structured, but they are very proactive in what the learn. We allow them to add their own ideas and projects and this has been very succesful.
My daughter has a Readers Book Log (www.lakeshorelearning.com) It has a book chart in the back that lets your child record the title of the book,the date they complete the book, and it also has a place where you can place a sticker on the kind of book it is. i.e. fiction, adventure, biography etc.