What is Language Arts?
Simply, Language Arts is everything that involves the way we speak, write, and communicate using both verbal and non-verbal language. This subject has long been the “gold standard” worldwide to determine a person’s overall intellect, even more so than mathematics. Language Arts consists of five strands which are:
When it comes to teaching Language Arts, the homeschool parent wants to know what to teach and when, and how to determine if they are adequately preparing their child for the future. Parents begin searching for an adequate Language Arts curriculum with limited understanding of what they actually need. Language Arts curricula are full of unnecessary redundancy, and even privately published homeschool curricula are written to align with "standards" of public schools. In order for schools to show success rates in literacy, all the same age peers must test at the same level, yet testing has never accomplished such results. So in order to change the outcome of the standardized tests to show success in standards, the curriculum and the tests are continuously dumbed down. Rather than encouraging children to strive higher in Language Arts, they are intentionally slowed down to make it appear as if schools are improving. Hence, children get bored and frustrated with Language Arts curricula and parents are always searching for something better.
We should understand that Language Arts is NOT a sequential subject. It does not have an order, but we are led to believe that it must be taught by grade level because of national education “standards” which we are accustomed to following. Math is the ONLY sequential subject where concepts must be taught and mastered in a specific order. The truth is, there should not be grade levels in Language Arts. The five strands of Language Arts should be integrated in any order and should be taught at the highest level that the child can comprehend - which is not specific to age or grade, rather by individuality.
Within the five strands of listening, speaking, viewing, reading, and writing, there are basic skills which should be mastered. From the youngest ages of reading and writing all the way to college, all of the skills can be taught without a separate language arts curriculum.
What are those skills needed, and how do you teach it without a curriculum?
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