Language Arts with RC

I love the simplicity of the Robinson Curriculum.

The 3 R’s are at the core- to read, to write, and to do math.

The other thing I appreciate is that it is a complete curriculum;
meaning that everything you need is already available for use.

Language Arts is one of those things.

RC equips the student well by way of quality reading, exposure to daily writings,
and the availability to utilize the grammar, spelling, and McGuffey readers as needed.

The overall consensus is that writing skills (aka grammar, spelling, punctuation, etc) will improve over time by simply being consistent with the reading and writing. The literature in RC displays quality grammar, so the children absorb it by daily exposure.  However, some folks feel the need to implement more.  I am one of those people.

So this post is to show you how to implement language arts utilizing what RC already provides.

Language Arts tools available in the Robinson Curriculum:

1.  A complete vocabulary program which includes:
-Vocabulary List – a list of the words and definitions
– Word Find – containing the vocabulary words as clues
– Crossword Puzzle – with clues to words across and down
– Word Find – containing definitions as clues
– Matching Game – matching words with definitions
along with available flashcards.


Professor Klugimkopf’s Grammar:
Primer and Main Course levels available.
Yes, this is our home-printed book that has gone through 4 years of usage now.

Professor Klugimkopf’s Spelling Method:
includes spelling rules, word families, and homonym studies

McGuffey Readers:
Readers are based on reading levels, not to be confused with grade levels.
Primer: 1st grade
1st Reader: 1st–2nd grades
2nd Reader: 3rd–4th grades
3rd Reader: 5th–6th grades
4th Reader: 6th–8th grades
5th Reader: 7th grade–college sophomore
6th Reader: 9th grade–college senior


I have a vast age range to teach.
(an upcoming 1st, 3rd, 7th, & 12th grader).
Much of what I do I integrate for all ages, and the student works to their abilities.

To start with, we study one grammar concept per month and build upon it.
Here is our common basic outline:

The 8 parts of speech (& more)

August- prepositional phrases
September- nouns (1 week emphasis each on concrete, abstract, proper, & pronouns)
October- adjectives
November- verbs (state of being, helping, action, etc)
December- adverbs, appositives
January- conjunctions, interjections, and articles
February- subject/predicates, (older kids include predicate nominative, adjective nominative, & direct objects)
March- 4 types of sentences, basic punctuation review including end marks and quotations.
April- commas, semi-colons vs colons
May- hyphens vs dashes, apostrophes


    We work through the grammar lessons, and apply them to our McGuffey reader lessons.


    McGuffey readers we use one lesson per week as follows:

    Monday- Read McG lesson, list words;
    Discuss in some depth the grammar topic at hand, by reading about in the grammar book listed above.

    Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday- Copy work
    My 6 yr practices letters and some words; working towards a sentence.
    My 9 yr old writes a few sentences, working towards a paragraph (a newbie reader and weak writer)
    My 12 & 17 yr old write a few paragraphs.

    Copywork is enough for the younger kids, but secondary learning levels also have an assigned essay, which includes adding 3 vocabulary words into their assignment. 

    Friday– oral spelling quiz, and dictation (younger kids);
    being able to write properly what I read out loud- adjust as necessary per child’s ability.

    I also write sentences daily (on our white board, often from their copywork), and we break down what we have learned.

    Example: The beaver is found chiefly in North America.

    prep. phrase- in North America (parenthesize)
    subject noun- beaver (underline once)
    verb- is found (underline twice)
    adverb- chiefly (marked above w/ ‘adv’) etc…

    *this is not instantly like this, but built upon each concept covered as the months go on* youngest kids just listen, middle kids are learning the concept, older kids are reviewing.


    PROF “K” SPELLING is based off of a Word Family style:
    I use a large white dry erase board for my big family, but can easily be written/typed on paper next to the student.

    ‘Notes on Homonyms’ jingles are written on the board, which I will break up into sections if it is a long one.
    The children copy it, then match up all the homonyms.
    Unfamiliar words will be listed as Vocabulary.

    Example of a “Notes on Homonyms” jingle:
    Lean and mean;
    A lien of property;
    a person of gentle mien.

    lean – lien; mean- mien (matched homonyms)
    Vocab words- lien, mien (the students are told to use a dictionary)

    Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday- *the above lesson is on the long e sound, thus we will learn the variety of word families that use the long e sound.

    I would list -eed on the board.

    I give them 2 minutes to come up with all the words they can using that.
    deed, feed, weed, need would be common;
    freed, speed would take some pondering;
    breed, creed, & tweed would be a “oh yeah” thought (often after I share it with them).

    Friday- oral spelling test/vocab test, and a dictation quiz as listed above from the McGuffey lesson.
    Word games are played such as Scrabble or Boggle.

    Note:  We have tried many grammar styles and curriculums.  I do not find outlining to be necessary.
    What RC provides is plenty sufficient, and this is just one family’s way of doing it because it works for us.



Here is a photo of our whiteboard.  Obviously, you don’t need one that big, and paper is even sufficient, to be honest.  This is one of our first lessons of the year.  A sample of spelling is up there, and the grammar lesson at hand was actually an introduction to prepositional phrase (over the hill) (through the woods) (to Grandmother’s house).    My explanations above seems long, so I wanted you to have a visual of how easy it is to implement, and it simply takes only few minutes a day.

I have found slow and steady gets us somewhere;
fast and chaotic gets us confused, especially when it comes to grammar!


8 thoughts on “Language Arts with RC

  1. This is AGES after you wrote this post, but I needed to say thank you anyhow. It is an incredibly helpful and well laid-out post which helps us to catch a glimpse of how it all fits together. I popped over from the Robinson Facebook page and I’m glad I did. Thanks.

  2. Hi Sheri,
    I discovered your blog from the RC yahoo group. I just discovered RC yesterday and requested to join the Users4Christ group, and here I am – which is a huge blessing!! I love your blog, I especially love that you have shared how you use the RC curriculum. I am mostly excited about this curriculum, yet I am also a little confused. When our family started HSing 6 years ago, it was after our oldest (now 14 yo daughter) had already gone through KG and 1st grade in a public school; then she and our youngest daughter (very soon to be 12 yo) both went to a private Christian school for one year. For the first two years of HSing, I replicated what I knew, which was school at home and we bought the full-on Abeka program with all the bells and whistles. By our third year, something didn’t feel right. I kept wondering if home learning should be a fun, and a fostering of loving to learn, neither of which I felt was taking place in our home education. Through prayer, I realized that it wasn’t me helping our girls, but Him! I decided to have fun, and built our curriculum simply via prayer (I had a lot of fun doing this and discovered wonderful curriculum). I felt lead to teach our girls at the same level, and we haven’t looked back! Yet, several years later, once again I am starting to feel like something isn’t right. There are some subjects we enjoy, but school is starting to feel like school again – drudgery. It saddens me. I have even lost my excitement for HSing. So, I am investigating RC and am inspired by your posts, I am so thankful to have found your blog! Warmly, Sandi

    1. Welcome Sandi!
      We have much in common. I too began w Abeka, then explored other options (mentioned in a recent post). My one daughter (of my 6 kids) went to public kinder, Private 1st grade, before her homeschool journey began (although I had already had 5 yrs of homeschooling down by then). She’s 14 and loves the flexibility of RC. Please feel free to look me up on the yahoo group with any questions you may have. I also moderate the rc4jc yahoo group, so you can ask questions through there also. Blessings to you new friend; enjoy the journey!

      1. Thank you for the warm welcome, Sheri! My husband and I are right now pouring over the RC site, hubby is watching the almost 2 hour video. I have been looking through all the files on the rc4jc group. I am amassing my questions! LOL!! 🙂

  3. Thank you for this post. I have been researching the Robinson Curriculum for awhile now and trying to figure out if it is worth the $200 investment. I am having a hard time finding people that use it.

    1. There are many who use it, but yes, it’s not the “normal” curriculum that many are familiar with. Please feel free to ask me any questions or ponder ideas or share your thoughts about RC. I’d love to hear from you.

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