We did it. We took the leap to computer-based education. I purchased Alpha and Omega's Switched on Schoolhouse, at least for Language Arts, History and Geography (which will wait until we finish the Middle Ages), and Science. That brings our total of computer subjects up to four with Teaching Textbooks' math curriculum, which I love!
It has gotten harder and harder to sync up all the kids' schedules for each subject so I've stopped trying. The good part, though, is that other subjects that I have ignored because it was too much work will get picked up. They don't have to be done all together. Things like copywork and memorization. My next purchase will be a Reading Journal for me to record sayings, poems, and the like that would make good memorization pieces. I think a glitzy looking notebook should stand out tolerably well so my boys don't use it!
Another big, huge, gigantic plus is that it keeps track of time---wonderful because Missouri tracks by hours, not days. I absolutely hate the record keeping requirements here. They are miserable. It also gives the kids immediate feedback on their work---essential for optimal learning but so difficult to achieve even for homeschoolers. Last, it grades most of the work for me. I procrastinated grading papers even when I taught at Logan High so that's obviously a toughie for me. What's not to like?!
To make it even better, the software has been upgraded to Windows Vista, and is on 20 percent sale right now. Check out this supplier at http://www.agdistribution.com/Defaulthome.aspx. Their customer service is excellent. I had several questions before buying, and they were answered within the hour.
For more detailed information about the topics studied in a given year, you will need to go to Alpha and Omega's website where they have full listings. (AG Distribution sent me the link.) They also have a diagnostic exam if you aren't sure what grade to use. You can purchase a full battery of exams for each grade and course from AG Distribution or you can use the free ones from A & O for Language Arts and Math. I almost skipped a grade based on the test, but another mom advised me not to because the coursework builds on what was covered the previous year. She also told me there are some Yahoo support groups that are invaluable.
So now we wait for delivery, free as long as ground was acceptable. (It was.)