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This is how I plan to afterschool - is it too much?


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#1 EngOZ

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Posted 23 February 2017 - 06:51 PM

My 5th grade dd has somewhat settled into her school routine and here's what I plan for 2017:

 

Logic puzzles (10-15 min)

 

LA/History 

- Winston Grammar (10 - 15 min)

- Narration, dictation, copywork, reading

using WWE format and reading through books recommended in WTM for history (15-20 min)

 

Math

- Math Mammoth 5th grade (20-30min)

- planning on adding Beast Academy, Life of Fred when dd is more settled/if possible

 

With all the shuffling around, interruptions and everything else that happens at home we generally take 1 hour to get through it. However I wanted to focus on her writing/research skills so she can become self-directed, and ready for high school and beyond. 

 

 


Edited by EngOZ, 23 February 2017 - 06:53 PM.

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#2 Spy Car

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Posted 23 February 2017 - 07:12 PM

If you are not fixed on Language Arts, I'd advise checking out MCT (Michael Clay Thompson) as it is the smart, efficient, fun, (expensive), and deep LA alternative and what I consider the best of the best for students who like to get the big picture up top.

 

Bill


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#3 EngOZ

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Posted 23 February 2017 - 10:01 PM

Hi Bill, you mentioned Miquon and Primary Maths as a good match in another post. Is the newer Math in Focus just as good as PM?

 

Also, what is a good age/grade to start introducing PM as word problem supplements, and transition? Do you try and finish all of Miquon first?

 

If you are not fixed on Language Arts, I'd advise checking out MCT (Michael Clay Thompson) as it is the smart, efficient, fun, (expensive), and deep LA alternative and what I consider the best of the best for students who like to get the big picture up top.

 

Bill

 


Edited by EngOZ, 23 February 2017 - 10:18 PM.


#4 Spy Car

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Posted 24 February 2017 - 12:04 AM

Hi Bill, you mentioned Miquon and Primary Maths as a good match in another post. Is the newer Math in Focus just as good as PM?

 

Also, what is a good age/grade to start introducing PM as word problem supplements, and transition? Do you try and finish all of Miquon first?

 

I have limited exposure to MiF. Some parents (especially ones that consider themselves "less mathy" have written that they feel like MiF (with the Teachers text) is a little more incremental and easier for them to teach.

 

I connected with Primary Mathematics, Both are materials used in Singapore schools. PM is written to the old syllabus, and MiF is the American version of My Pals Are Here! which conforms with the new syllabus.

 

I doubt you could go wrong either way. Same Math Model.

 

I started with word problems early with the Singapore challenging Word Problems books. Word problems are the vexation of many math students, so better to start early with a "method" than starting late. My son (via Zaccaro) turned early to using algebra (as opposed to the Singapore bar diagram method) so he never became the master of bar diagrams that I'd originally intended. But word problems are best started early with some sort of "method."

 

Being able to explain the mathematical reasoning for even non-word problems is pretty key in early math education. It's not just about getting the right answer.

 

Bill


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#5 Bluegoat

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Posted 24 February 2017 - 12:02 PM

My 5th grade dd has somewhat settled into her school routine and here's what I plan for 2017:

 

Logic puzzles (10-15 min)

 

LA/History 

- Winston Grammar (10 - 15 min)

- Narration, dictation, copywork, reading

using WWE format and reading through books recommended in WTM for history (15-20 min)

 

Math

- Math Mammoth 5th grade (20-30min)

- planning on adding Beast Academy, Life of Fred when dd is more settled/if possible

 

With all the shuffling around, interruptions and everything else that happens at home we generally take 1 hour to get through it. However I wanted to focus on her writing/research skills so she can become self-directed, and ready for high school and beyond. 

 

I don't know about too much, it really depends I think on other commitments, what time of day, and such. 

 

I might think though about doing alternate days rather than both subjects each day, depending on the student.  I also am not sure I'd do three math programs apart from what is being done in school already.  It seems scattered.  I might pick out elements from Beast or MM to support the school program or add something really different, and maybe just give LoF for personal reading.


Edited by Bluegoat, 24 February 2017 - 12:02 PM.

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#6 Spy Car

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Posted 24 February 2017 - 01:22 PM

Family dynamics are different, but what has made long-term after-schooling a success with my son is realizing school days only make up about half the calendar year.

 

So I always seek to fill the voids, while recognizing there are days when school demands, the need for downtime/play/social commitments/outside activities/sports/etc have their own value. Personally, I never blocked a life-opportunity because son had after-schooling to do.

 

And there was still time to fill the voids.  Knowing he would never "lose out" and would only gain has helped keep the parent-child learning relationship a strong one.

 

Bill


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#7 gstharr

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Posted 24 February 2017 - 10:05 PM

My gut reaction is that this is way to much for after schooling. In fact, It borders on obsessive.  This is after school, not in lieu of school.  We've been after-schooling since pre-k. At the beginning it was two subjects, a maximum of 45 minutes total per session. then around 5th grade a maximum of 1 hour, 3 or 4 tiems per week, with great flexibility on the  of the number of sessions per week.   A fifth grader is starting into  mandatory homework and reports and  some special projects.  Add in sports and social agenda ( Birthday parties and play dates).  If you insist on this amount of after-schooling. then plan on doing some during the summer. . But as to school year, way too much.  

 


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#8 SKL

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Posted 25 February 2017 - 01:21 AM

I'm not clear on whether this is for the current year, so you already know his homework load, or a future year.

 

In my experience, homework can be randomly heavy and unpredictable in 5th grade, and I assume it's not going to get better in 6th.  However, I know there are some schools that don't require much homework even in these grades, so that might be fine.

 

I approach it this way.  A kid at this age/grade should have ___ minutes of academic work after school most days.  Homework takes precedence.  If there is time after homework is done, then we may do "mom work" as I call it.  Of course I remain flexible for schedule fluctuations.  For example, for about a month in late fall, my kids stayed after school most days to work on school-related projects / programs.  "Mom work" got totally shafted.  I also give scout work preference over "mom work," because scout work tends to be just as valuable.

 

Fact is, I have lots of hopes for afterschooling, but much of it doesn't get done.  I am now telling myself that we'll do a bunch on spring break and in the summer.

 

So I would say, prioritize and be flexible with your plans.



#9 EngOZ

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Posted 26 February 2017 - 05:23 PM

So far I've only done LA by using real books in a historical format - according to recommendations by the WWE. The teacher has agreed that DD can read through SWB's history book recommendations, so when she comes home we work on narration, dictation or whatever it is shes working on - 15 min.

 

We do about 2-3 pages of MM, but it's quite easy for her, which is why I'm looking at supplements to make it more challenging. Sometimes i through in a bit of critical thinking - overall 20-30min

 

So on a typical day, we could spend anywhere from 30-40 min about 4 times a week. Two of those days are study dates, where other kids join us, and we're generally flexible.

 

around 5th grade a maximum of 1 hour, 3 or 4 tiems per week, with great flexibility on the  of the number of sessions per week. 

 

I'm not clear on whether this is for the current year, so you already know his homework load, or a future year.

 

In my experience, homework can be randomly heavy and unpredictable in 5th grade, and I assume it's not going to get better in 6th.  However, I know there are some schools that don't require much homework even in these grades, so that might be fine.

 

I approach it this way.  A kid at this age/grade should have ___ minutes of academic work after school most days.  Homework takes precedence.  If there is time after homework is done, then we may do "mom work" as I call it.  Of course I remain flexible for schedule fluctuations.  For example, for about a month in late fall, my kids stayed after school most days to work on school-related projects / programs.  "Mom work" got totally shafted.  I also give scout work preference over "mom work," because scout work tends to be just as valuable.

 

Fact is, I have lots of hopes for afterschooling, but much of it doesn't get done.  I am now telling myself that we'll do a bunch on spring break and in the summer.

 

So I would say, prioritize and be flexible with your plans.

 



#10 EKS

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Posted 27 February 2017 - 09:40 AM

The teacher has agreed that DD can read through SWB's history book recommendations, so when she comes home we work on narration, dictation or whatever it is shes working on - 15 min.

 

Why would you need the teacher's approval for reading anything after school?



#11 EngOZ

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Posted 27 February 2017 - 09:22 PM

Teachers in our public schools encourage you to incorporate things from home, particularly reading. I would you rather my kids use real books than school readers. 

 

Why would you need the teacher's approval for reading anything after school?

 



#12 SKL

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Posted 27 February 2017 - 11:27 PM

In 5th grade I would have thought most of the reading would be from "real books" vs. readers.  And most of it is freely selected by the kids.  Maybe I'm sheltered over here.  :)

 

I don't think 30-40 minutes 4x per week is too much, assuming there is not also a heavy homework load.

 

So here's a question - how do folks get afterschooling done (at this age) with an unpredictable homework schedule?  I struggle with this.  One day I plan a project assuming homework will be average, only to find out they have 4 assignments and a test to study for.  The next day they find themselves unexpectedly homework-free, and they gleefully plan a free evening; they don't want me pulling out surprise extra work just because I can.



#13 EngOZ

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Posted 28 February 2017 - 12:30 AM

By having a say in what books I want dd to read, and what writing/research assignments I would like her to do (with the teachers approval), we pretty much get LA/History covered. It's a win-win, for the teacher and us, plus I get to keep tabs and have a say in her learning. In the words of her teacher, her class is pretty "mathy" so they don't get that much math homework. I must add 1) we don't live in the US, 2) this is an Opportunity Class and not a typical 5th grade class.

 

DD is still working on her time management skills, so I sit down with her and help her schedule her week. We write everything down, and break up her homework into little timeslots - this is how we schedule her afterschooling session. I've gotten used to her homework routine, so no surprises there. Eventually I'll let her plan her own week once she's more mature, but working with her on a weekly/daily basis with her planner has really helped us to be efficient with our afterschooling.


Edited by EngOZ, 28 February 2017 - 12:35 AM.


#14 nansk

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Posted 28 February 2017 - 04:05 AM

So here's a question - how do folks get afterschooling done (at this age) with an unpredictable homework schedule? 

We do afterschooling work on days when dd has no homework, and we do at least an hour on Sat/Sun.

 

Then there are days before school exams when we don't do any afterschooling at all, just revision of school books.

 

Also, I have had to prioritize which subjects I get to do with dd, because we cannot do them all. I chose to do subjects where she struggles or where the school curriculum falls short. 

I had to drop Maths and Science enrichment topics. She in in a Singapore school, so what she has to do for Maths and Science is good enough. We didn't do much grammar, or any spelling, or penmanship because she grasped these skills intuitively.

This year she is in 7th grade, and we are focusing on expository writing and study skills. And we read a History text on weekends, but I don't quiz her about it.



#15 winterbaby

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Posted 15 April 2017 - 07:54 PM

 

So here's a question - how do folks get afterschooling done (at this age) with an unpredictable homework schedule?  I struggle with this.  One day I plan a project assuming homework will be average, only to find out they have 4 assignments and a test to study for.  The next day they find themselves unexpectedly homework-free, and they gleefully plan a free evening; they don't want me pulling out surprise extra work just because I can.

 

I have a schedule for the afternoon. Learning time (three 45 minute segments out of the six hours between arrival home and bedtime) is learning time, whether homework or my stuff. (And my stuff often includes educational games and puzzles.) Luckily this year (4th) she's had teachers who assign a packet for the week; one of the skills she's learning is how to space this out appropriately. The idea that a teacher can just declare that tonight, without warning, your child gets no free time, is completely insane to me. One year we had a teacher who was new at that level after having taught middle school, and her expectations were wildly inappropriate for the age group. I made a rule that homework that couldn't be completed in the amount of time I'd designated as appropriate... couldn't be completed. We had no trouble over it.

 

There's also Obama's mom's method: wake 'em up early in the morning. But that's pretty radical and I only did it for a very limited period in response to some particularly troubling deficiencies.



#16 SKL

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Posted 15 April 2017 - 11:01 PM

The idea that a teacher can just declare that tonight, without warning, your child gets no free time, is completely insane to me. One year we had a teacher who was new at that level after having taught middle school, and her expectations were wildly inappropriate for the age group. I made a rule that homework that couldn't be completed in the amount of time I'd designated as appropriate... couldn't be completed. We had no trouble over it.

 

My kids now (5th grade) have homework from several different teachers, who apparently don't coordinate about homework, so it's harder to put my foot down about it.  I'm sure each individual teacher thinks s/he is being very reasonable.
 

In the past, they have had some teachers who just had terrible timing with homework.  The heavy homework day would be the one when my kids had scouts or multiple sports classes.  You can't say too much because they will argue that your kid has too many activities.  (Unfortunately I can't control which days they have practices OR heavy homework; and I'm not going to drop sports all together.)  I did complain about not getting advance notice of tests.  The teacher said that wouldn't happen any more, but it did and does.

 

Ironically, my kids' two main teachers both sent home a letter at the beginning of 5th grade promising a very reasonable-sounding approach to homework and test notice.  Unfortunately they have not entirely adhered to it, and the other teachers aren't constrained by those guidelines either.


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#17 winterbaby

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Posted 16 April 2017 - 08:24 AM

Oh that's too bad. That's why I like the weekly packet approach. I think it's reasonable for them to say "this needs to be done this week." It's not reasonable for them to say "this needs to be done tonight." It needn't have anything to do with activities - my kid's only one is one hour a week, at school, immediately after school. But some of the homework the middle school-turned-second grade teacher was giving was too much even for our light schedule. It's more just the fact that they're kids and the school shouldn't give them so much that the parents have to orient their life around it. Like what about underprivileged families that just can't?