There are always factors that influence what curriculum we choose. Maybe you you want to gather all the children together for as many subjects as possible. Or perhaps you have little ones and need the older kids to work by themselves.
If you’re someone in the “independent learning” camp, then continue reading my ACE curriculum review because it’s a fabulous program for that!
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ACE (Accelerated Christian Education)
ACE by Ace Ministries may seem very simple at first glance, but it has a lot to offer in its basic approach. It’s benefited my homeschool in so many ways.
Benefits of ACE Curriculum
Great for Teaching Independent Learning
When I think about an excellent curriculum to make independent learners, I think of the ACE curriculum. It does a fantastic job of using independent learning strategies, which helps a child take control of his own schedule each week.
Depending on the age of your student, once the groundwork has been established, it’s possible for him to do all his work by himself each day with you only giving some guidance when needed.
When your child’s in charge of his own learning, he has a skill that’s going to transfer into adulthood. It’s a wonderful feeling to watch your child working through his studies each day knowing he’s gaining life skills that will help him be successful.
I know this because I’ve graduated one of mine and watched him use these same skills at his job as an adult. The managers have noticed his ability to handle situations on his own and can count on him to get things done. No doubt it’s a result of his training in school.
Teaches Goal Setting
ACE consists of individual PACEs (Packet of Accelerated Christain Education) the child works through. The idea is similar to a whole textbook being broken down into its individual units.
Each PACE represents one of those units. Every subject has its own set of 12 PACEs, which they recommend being completed in a year. It works out to three per nine weeks. Of course every child is different and this isn’t set in stone. You can adjust this based on your student’s needs and abilities.
Here is a video showing what they look like and how the work is laid out.
Before each PACE is started, count the number of pages in it and divide that by the numbers of days you want your child to be finished (usually around 3 weeks). This determines how many pages your student needs to do each day and also helps with time management.
These page numbers are marked on a weekly chart and checked off by your student when completed each day. This chart is a great way to set short-term goals for each week.
In addition, the student can set a long-term goal for the year for the three PACEs per nine weeks and twelve per year needing to be completed. There’s a separate chart to visualize this. Stickers are placed on it each time a workbook is finished to show progress and help the student have a sense of achievement.
Something to note is that students who complete their work faster may move through the books quicker and move ahead. As I stated before, the goal of 12 books per year is a recommendation because some may be able to do more and others less. These charts will help the student see how they’re doing and adjust in order to meet those goals.
Strengthens Weak Areas and Fills in the Gaps
The beauty of this program is your child can be working at different levels for each subject. He may excel in math but perhaps requires a slower pace in reading. Through a free online diagnostic test, you’ll be able to tell precisely which PACE your child should start in for each subject.
You can also determine if there are learning gaps that need to be closed and use specific PACEs to accomplish this. This makes it easy to go back and reinforce weak or missing skills to get caught up and move on with a stronger foundation.
ACE’s 5 Laws of Learning Explained
Teaches Character and Bible
One of the things I love about this curriculum is the character training and Bible that’s incorporated. Each PACE starts with a verse that will be memorized by the end of the book as well as a character trait that’s introduced and reinforced throughout. Cartoons are used for the illustrations and teach in a fun way.
Perfect for Carschooling
Each PACE has everything the student needs inside. There are no other books required. There are occasionally hands-on activities or experiments to do, but we’ve found these to be mainly in science.
Each workbook is thin and lightweight, and because each subject is self-contained in its own worktext, it’s easy to take school work in the car or to appointments. You just grab your workbooks and a pencil and go!
Helpful When Teaching More Than One Child
I had quite an age range to teach in my house for a few years, and I wasn’t smart when I chose curricula when my third child started school.
I bought materials for each student that I loved but required way too much of my time preparing and teaching, and it became challenging to split myself between the children.
I realized real fast that something needed to change and ACE was the answer!
Once a student has been trained to use this, he can go off on his own and complete his assignments with little to no assistance from you.
Yes, you will need to check in on him to make sure he understands the concepts and is maintaining a certain percentage correct, but that can be done at your convenience throughout the day. Not when another child needs you at the same time.
Cuts Down on Clutter
With homeschooling comes a lot of books and materials. Sometimes we have to dedicate entire bookshelves, corners, or closets to them.
This program is so nice because the ACE PACEs are all you need (other than chapter books starting in level 4 for literature). Paces are thin booklets and don’t take up a lot of space and are easy to stack.
In the high school years there are DVD’s you can purchase to go along with the labs, but those don’t take up much space either.
I found the price of this curriculum to be very reasonable. I purchased the entire year of school, including the chapter books for the literature and creative writing class, for less than it would cost for just a couple of subject with some other companies. The PACEs vary in price depending on the grade level and range from $2.70-$3.50 each. They include all the core subjects:
- Math (K-12)
- English (K-12)
- Literature and Creative Writing (2-8)
- Social Studies (K-12)
- Science (K-12)
- Word Building (which includes spelling and vocabulary) (K-9)
- Bible Reading (1-6)
At the high school level, DVDs can be purchased to help teach specific subjects. This is something parents will appreciate if they don’t feel comfortable teaching certain subjects. They are an added cost but perhaps worth it once you are in subjects like trigonometry and physics.
There also many electives available. The list includes Bible, business, fine arts, government, health, foreign languages, language arts, and college classes.
ACE Curriculum Review Conclusion
This curriculum is meant to be student led and will make a big difference in your day if you find yourself in the same situation I was in or you just want your child to take more responsibility for his work.
We had a great experience with the ACE homeschool curriculum. My daughter loved being able to do her work by herself, and she especially liked not having to wait around for me to finish working with another child. She loved being in control of starting and ending her school day, and felt a sense of satisfaction when she could check off her chart each day.
If this sounds like something you’d be interested in, you can find the ACE curriculum at Christian Book Distributors.
If this ACE curriculum review was helpful, check out my other homeschool curriculum reviews and if you’ve used the ACE curriculum, let me know how you liked it in the comments below.
7 thoughts on “ACE Curriculum Review”
Homeschooled with the Ace Curriculum in early 1990’s, to help my son who was struggling in a public middle school (diagnosed with dyslexia). My son graduated with a high school diploma from an accredited homeschool program, and was accepted to a top 10 college. My daughter returned to the community high school and was considered advanced in her education. Her school counselor referred parents of at risk students to me to talk about the ACE curriculum. My husband and I have taken in a 13 yr old boy that lost both of his parents. We will be purchasing the ACE curriculum for him. I would appreciate any info on schools that offer record keeping and diplomas for homeschoolers.
Did you know that ACE has an accredited program that gives a diploma? You can check out the Lighthouse Christian Academy here: https://www.aceministries.com/homeschool-options
Thank you for such an in-depth review, I really appreciate it. I am a new HS momma & I just withdrew my 8 yr old daughter from school last week before school starts this week, as she is entering 3rd grade this yr.
She is diagnosed dyslexia but on the lower end and had an IEP in place as of late last school yr (2nd grade). She actually struggles really bad in math more than anything and got on grade level for her reading by the end of the yr last yr!
My question is.. I have been looking at what curriculum to buy as I’m new to all of this (and a single Mom) and the options are endless. So many great reviews on YT for ACE and I commented on a ladies channel and told her about my daughter being dyslexic and she said that the ACE curriculum probably wouldn’t be a good fit for her as she would need more of a video based teaching due to her dyslexia. What are your thoughts? I don’t want her online all day in front of a screen.
Also, did you order the home starter kit from ACE to record keep? I know they have the LCA but that seems a bit much for us at this time. Thanks so much 🙂
I highly recommend the Stevenson Reading Program for any child with dyslexia. I used it with my son and it was amazing! A program that is great for math is Semple Math. I would concentrate on those two subjects and do more read alouds, field trips, and hands-on activities for history and science. That would let her improve in those two areas and gain confidence.
I would also try Times Tales for help with math facts.
I hope this helps!
I just started using this again. I used it in school and now I’m using it with my kids. My 13 year old has a very hard time getting it all done though. How long does your school day normally go and how long per subject? What all subjects are you using? She is taking English, Science, social studies and word building and then she goes to a literature class that’s separate. She goes to that co-op once a week and reads through the week for that. She’s also taking private piano and doing math through another program. We do Bible as a family in the mornings. I think she may be dyslexic or something similar but we haven’t tested. Up to now we’ve been less structured. We tested last year to see where we were at. I found the kids were far advanced in some things and lacking more than I realized in others. I would also love to do a foreign language but we are struggling majorly to keep up with what we’re all ready doing. Any thoughts would be so helpful. She’s my oldest of 6. My youngest is 4.
Have you tried doing reading and math every day and then alternating certain subjects like science and history or English and word building other day? This is what we do. That way they aren’t doing all subjects every day. Or you could rotate those subjects per 9-weeks.
Here is Charlotte Mason’s suggested length of time for each subject by grade level:
Grades 1-3- 15-20 minutes per subject
Grades 4-6- 20-30 minutes per subject
Grades 7-12- 30-45 minutes per subject
If you think your daughter is dyslexic, I highly recommend Stevenson’s Reading Program. It’s fantastic even if she isn’t!
I would wait on the foreign language if you can. It’s not required until high school and there’s no sense in making your day longer.
As far as the kids being ahead in some areas and behind in others, I think we compare ourselves to the public school system and who is to say they are the authority? I have found over they years that all my kids learn at different rates and by the end, they get what they need if I pay attention to their interests, strengths, and weaknesses and focus on those.
I hope you find that helpful!
Thank you so much for your review! It’s nice to see a great review. I have homeschooled off and on since 2005 and feel like I’ve read too much and tried a lot of things. The ACE PACES go with my motto to “Keep It Super Simple”. ACE has been great for my freshman daughter who has needed to fill in gaps and catch up. She is catching up and she is also able to be an independent learner at her age. This has been a perfect fit for her. We are using a different math curriculum for now (Math-U-See). So glad I came across your website! God bless!