I like Crystal's idea of reading along with an audio. That's exactly what I have to do, since I learn almost nothing by just listening. Well, either reading along or writing along - either taking notes, or just writing what I hear, I may never use it but the writing itself is somehow what I need.
I have a son who is odd enough to be a great reader but does not want to read, so it all seems to sound like Charlie Brown's teacher to him, wah wah wah. I was worried about AHL, too. David Hazell actually had to remind me that I had trusted MFW all along to meet his needs, so why would that change
I did make adaptations as we went along, sometimes according to ideas Marie gave in the manual and sometimes my own ideas, since I had taught a high schooler before. In the end, I'm pleased with my son's progress in 9th, and it was much easier on me than creating my own daily assignments as I did with my older dd using various other high school curriculum.
The first thing I like to point out is that when we moms think that Homer and the like is going to be "really hard" reading, actually those are some of the most basic stories that don't take a ton of maturity to comprehend. Yes, they have a lot of words and are definitely high school level. But really for our culture at least, there isn't as much depth to explore in terms of meaning and application. For instance, my son recently read Animal Farm near the end of WHL. MUCH shorter book, fairly EASY read, but TONS more layers of meaning, at least in our culture today, so really an older student will get more out of it than a younger one. I asked my son (the non-reader) if he agreed. He reminded me that we used an audiobook for Iliad and he likes that. But he did agree that Animal Farm, although it could be read at any age, would be understood at very different levels depending on age, whereas the Iliad was more of just a fun story to him (thankfully he's forgetting some of the pain of bringing him into that book in 9th grade).
Another thing I'd like to mention is that you can adapt and adjust, but still let Marie Hazell do *most* of the work for you. And that work will include making sure your student reads the entire Bible as a high schooler without getting waylaid, learning how to compose whole essays, understanding the background of many of our culture's references, and the chance for your emerging young person to explore their new questions with some good apologetics.
And lastly, I'd encourage you, even if you make alternate plans, to allow room for your child to surprise you and really grow up
I know my son has made as much progress as he has in the first half of high school because I didn't *always* go with my instinct to shelter him. Sometimes I did, but not always
Here are a few threads where I shared some of the things we did, in case anything helps. Usually if I subbed, I used something very similar rather than going in a completely different direction, such as using some of D'Aulaire's alongside Bulfinch's, and adding my own questions to the mix. I still tried to expose my son to the "real thing" as well, because while D'Aulaire gives some of the cultural references, Bulfinch's gives the true apologetics comparison - with the real emptiness of the myths laid out when you take off the candy coating. I may have had more time to adjust than you do with 4 kids at home, but I'd be happy to share anything that might help.
http://board.mfwbooks.com/viewtopic.php ... 729#p86729
http://board.mfwbooks.com/viewtopic.php ... 266#p85266
http://board.mfwbooks.com/viewtopic.php ... 203#p85203
http://board.mfwbooks.com/viewtopic.php ... 631#p84631
http://board.mfwbooks.com/viewtopic.php ... 340#p76340