My boys have never done an official Language Arts curriculum before. In the early years they learned a variety of "language arts" skills through the Five In A Row Curriculum. They didn't learn the run of the mill typical things you tend to teach children at that age either. We learned parts of speech through Mad Libs, even if they did come out in generally funny ways. Punctuation was learned, mostly, through a lot of copywork.
The past year or two we've been reading The Word Spy & Return Of The Word Spy which my boys are totally crazy about. We've learned a lot about the history of the English Language, had lots of refreshers on parts of speech, enjoyed trying our hands at Pig Latin, & learned a plethora of other incredible stuff.
Next year I thought it might be good to put everything my kids have learned into practice. Or is it that I'm testing their knowledge now? Either way I thought they'd enjoy the Language Arts programmes from Winter Promise where you solve a mystery all year long. The idea being that as they apply what they know to their lessons they'll gather clues to solve various mysteries.
Aside from math this will the boys first experience with workbooks, all though because we've got the digital versions it'll look more like a bound notebook. I like that the programme is broken down into 4 workbooks that are filled with 9 weeks worth of work. That's perfect for our family as we do a 4 term school year, & regardless of how long each term is it'll be pretty easy for the boys to see how much they need to accomplish each term.
I'm pretty keen to see how the boys go with it. And, in case you're wondering they'll each be using a different level. I've just happened to select the two levels that are year long mysteries even though they aren't quite on the kids grade level. I'm not entirely worried about that aspect of it as much as seeing how much they've retained over the years & filling in any blanks we might have.