Saturday, May 7, 2016

Are ACE PACEs not "advanced"?

In my ACE PACEs Facebook group, someone recently said that another curriculum was more advanced than ACE. Here was my response, which I thought I'd share here for my readers.

It was recently said that CLE is more "advanced" than ACE. I don't know that I'd say CLE is more "advanced" than ACE. It moves at a faster pace but ACE is, to me, more in tune with child development. I don't want a newcomer (to ACE) thinking they're "downgrading" by going with ACE because that just isn't the case.

Take it from someone who has been with ACE for 5 years *on and off*. I emphasize that to say we've tried everything under the sun and yet we're returning to PACEs for a reason. ACE teaches the same stuff other programs teach, so I'd also advise *against* skipping ahead (what's the rush, anyway?) because soon, you'll hit a roadblock. ACE just goes slower and teaches things like we were all taught.

In other words, unlike the public schools, ACE hasn't lost sight of what Kindergarten MEANS, for example. The public schools want them doing what ACE has 2nd graders doing, which is just ridiculous. Kindergarten should be about FUN, coloring, exploring, songs, fun, fun, fun! ACE knows this and has created a fantastic Kindergarten program. No, it's not "rigorous" but should Kindergarten be that way? That's just one example.

Yes, by high school ACE is teaching the same things other programs are teaching and at the same time. The difference is that kids would've developed a much stronger foundation with ACE! Think of it like this: ACE goes a mile deep and an inch wide while other programs tend to go a mile wide and an inch deep....

So what does all of this mean? It means the ACE PACEs are far from "behind" as some people like to say. As someone who does a lot of research and who likes to look for trends, I've noticed trends in the ACE naysayers:

  • They attended an ACE school back in the 80s or 90s. ACE has definitely upgraded its program since then! 
  • If they homeschool, they only tried out a PACE or two for anywhere from a month to one year. ACE was not designed to be used like this. It wasn't designed for you to pop in and out of the program. Rather, they assume you'll stay with the program for all 12 (13 counting Kindy) years. This means that while they may not be teaching the same things in "3rd grade" that other programs teach, they DO get to it. Again, inch wide/mile deep... 
  • They are the type of homeschooler who gets wrapped up in labels like "gifted" (that's a blog post/soapbox of its own) or "advanced." ACE simply doesn't advertise itself like this. 
When you come across negative reviews of ACE, consider the source. Remember that you don't know their situation, their home life, how they're raising their children, the values they're instilling into their children, etc. If ACE lines up with your family's values and you like the PACEs, then use them. Do not be deterred by naysayers! Instead, find the people who are pro-ACE (we're on Yahoo and Facebook, by the way). Talk to those who LOVE ACE--not those who despise it! 

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