Homeschool Vocabulary Curriculum Forum

Good morning all! Welcome to another homeschool curriculum forum. Today we’ll be discussing vocabulary curriculum!


This upcoming year will be the first year I’m introducing a more formal vocabulary program into our homeschool. Up until now we’ve just been reviewing words that come with our spelling program and in our Abeka readers.

However this year we’re going to be working through Wordly Wise workbooks just to include a little more vocabulary focused work. I’ve heard fairly good reviews for Wordly Wise products. However I’ve also been cautioned that they are a secular curriculum so some of the terms used might not be appropriate if you prefer Christian materials.



  • Fairly inexpensive workbooks.
  • Students work independently.


  • Secular curriculum.
  • TBD as we progress through it!


One other vocabulary curriculum I’ve had my eye on and planned to use this year, but haven’t been great at it are the Vocabulary Cartoons. It is a book full of funny cartoons that help students remember vocabulary words through visual reminders as well as mnemonics.



  • Fun and memorable cartoons
  • Includes reviews and quizzes after every 10 or so words.


  • Only two levels are available, the elementary and SAT word power.
  • Unless you want to use the book to “show” students the cartoons, it is difficult to photocopy pages to allow students to color them.


So, now comes the fun part!

What are your favorite Vocabulary curriculum, resources, websites, etc? Leave a comment below discussing your choices for this year and why.

Feel free to ask questions or reply to each other too!

It’s my way of doing a forum without actually doing a forum haha!

And hopefully this will help us all as we start the process of researching curriculum, and trying to decide what will be the best fit for our homeschool.

Note: Please keep today’s conversations geared towards VOCABULARY, I will be posting one for each subject separately so we can keep our comments organized.

Click here if you missed my previous Homeschool Curriculum Forum posts!

Disclosure: This was not a sponsored post, I may however be affiliated with one or more products mentioned. The opinions expressed in this post were not influenced by the company. They are products I have used and felt like sharing, cuz’ it’s my blog and I can if I want to.


  • Allyson May 14, 2013 at 3:21 am

    We use English From the Roots Up. We also use Prima Latina for Latin and that has helped my son’s vocabulary very much. I have also made lists of homonyms/homophones that I give him periodically to look at.

  • Cassie DiStefano May 14, 2013 at 4:44 am

    We used Wordly Wise for my third grader this year. Like you said, she just worked through it independently. The words are just regular words that they may already know but they usually have more than one meaning. Each word lists each definition, the part of speech and an example sentence. I like just reading through the list with my daughter to show her how one word can be used in so many different ways and as a different part of speech. There are about 4-6 activities for each word list, including a reading comprehension, and the activities themselves are what make this such a great vocabulary program. They are really geared to make the student think outside the box. My daughter will breeze through reading comprehension (Abeka read and think) with multiple choice answers but the reading comprehension in Wordly Wise really makes her think. They have to answer in their own sentences and use a vocabulary word in their sentence if one is not used in the question.

    I have already purchased book 4 for her for “next year” and book 2 for my son. This will be the first time he will be using vocabulary besides occasional science vocabulary. This year I didn’t have an answer key and made checking her work very time consuming! I made sure to purchase answer keys this year! They too are inexpensive at under $4.

    I haven’t seen any material to make me worry that it is not Christian material but I will be aware now.

    • Amy S. May 14, 2013 at 7:52 am

      What level did you start with for your 3rd grader? Mine will be in 3rd, and we have not done formal vocab. Her normal speech is pretty advanced, though.

      • Cassie DiStefano May 16, 2013 at 5:42 am

        We used book 3 that a friend had as an extra. She had half a year of vocab (about 10 words per list) when she was in public school 2nd grade. Then this year she had three vocab words including with her spelling list in Abeka 3rd grade spelling. When our friend gave us book 3 of Wordly Wise I told her we would just go through it at our own pace. She is above grade level in reading and comprehension but this was challenging (just the right level of challenging I think) because of the format.

        I will be getting book 4 for her and book 2 for my second grader. From what I previewed, I think they are pretty much “grade level” equivalent with their book numbers.

        • Amy S. May 16, 2013 at 6:53 am

          Thank you!

  • Carol S. May 14, 2013 at 5:03 am

    I’ve also used Wordly Wise with my two teens. I will most likely be starting it with my younger kids as well this year. I had to laugh at what Cassie said about not buying the (very inexpensive) answer keys one year. I, too, found that to be a big mistake and ended up buying them. WW gets rave reviews on Cathy Duffy’s website and I have found that to be accurate. It’s easy to use, inexpensive, easy to correct (with the answer keys!) and teaches very useful words. No, it’s not a Christian workbook, but I haven’t found anything objectionable in the workbooks at this point. There are many worthwhile vocabulary programs out there, but WW seems to get the job done without the high price tag of some other options.

  • Donna May 14, 2013 at 5:36 am

    I have been looking into Wordly Wise, and love the word lists they use. I also like the activities they provide to reinforce learning the words.

    Wordly Wise also has some free stuff on their website, such as word lists for each book and an audio for each lesson…(some books, not all)

    Wordly Wise can also be done online instead of the workbook approach. That can also be purchased through…it was on sale a while ago…not sure if it still is right now…but worth checking!!

    Love these blog forums Erica! Thanks for all your time!

    • Vanessa Anderson May 20, 2013 at 10:23 am

      I too love homeschool buyers co-op! I just posted it on here not realizing someone already did. The deal is still on and I think it’ll be there for awhile. Anyhow, have you used it online? I used the workbook but I think online would be a better fit for us. 🙂

  • Laura May 14, 2013 at 6:03 am

    I used to use Wordly Wise way back when I used to teach in an Episcopal elementary school. I liked them then and remember having little slips they could fill out to get extra points if they found a Wordly Wise word in their reading. We filled a whole bulletin board with them.

  • Tori May 14, 2013 at 6:41 am

    I started using Wordly Wise this year with my oldest. (15 yrs. old) He has always been very advanced in his spelling & vocabulary so I went with a grade ahead to give him a challenge. So, far we both LOVE it! My boys work mostly independently for all their lessons anyways, so this just fit right in.
    Both my boys also use Memoria Press Latin. And the oldest requested to learn Greek this year.

    • Sarah May 14, 2013 at 9:02 am

      My kids are learning greek and latin too. I think you’ll find they will have a greater enjoyment in vocabulary because of knowing those root languages

  • Heidi May 14, 2013 at 6:45 am

    We have used Wordly Wise some over the years. I’m not sure how much my children remember from it but they did work through them independently.

    Now I usually just make up flash cards with Latin or Greek words and add cards each week. My son puts them in a “correct” and “incorrect” pile when he works through them and then keeps going through the “incorrect” pile until he gets them all right.

  • Kathleen Calabrese May 14, 2013 at 6:46 am

    We have used Wordly Wise for several years. My youngest son will just be starting with it in Sept. My oldest son loves it. It is fairly simple, he does it on his own and it has definitely expanded his vocabulary.
    I recommend it.

  • Samantha Lehmann May 14, 2013 at 7:22 am

    I am all about loving learning connections lately. We turned off the tv for Lent. Easter ends this Sunday and we are keeping it off until Pentecost…. Well… We will see. So, Timberdoodle has this game. Almost $30 so pricey… Maria’s Words, I think. It’s a stack off 155 picture cues and words you use to predict the meaning. We really want it and tried to win it twice. Hubby just lost two big contracts, so we are just trying to keep the kids home next year… Even if we eat ramen! So, it is high on our list for birthdays etc. your three love living math… Bet they’d love it.

  • Amy Machin May 14, 2013 at 8:29 am

    If you go to the Wordly Wise website ( and click on “Student,” it will take you to an interactive area. You can either go through the word lists by book level (it will read the word to hear correct pronunciation & give you the definition) or you can play games (concentration, etc.).
    So having said that, we have not bought the books but use the website. (BTW, it’s free thus far!!)
    I’m also looking into incorporating Latin vocabulary too…eventually…

1 2 3

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.