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Everything posted by Kuovonne

  1. This thread caught my eye because I'm on my third year of learning Spanish. I'm using Breaking the Spanish Barrier combined with Anki flashcards inspired by the Fluent Forever system. I started it three years ago with my younger daughter when she was in 7th grade, then when she went to public school for 8th grade, I continued learning on my own. My system is rather unique and slow, but it works well for me.
  2. Some people use the same passage for copywork and dictation throughout the week. Monday: Observe the passage and annotate to highlight punctuation, capitalization, spelling, etc. Tuesday: Write passage as copywork from annotated copy Wednesday: Write passage as copywork from un-annotated copy Thursday: Write passage from dictation I didn’t actually use this method for either of my kids. My younger DD really disliked copywork, but was okay with dictation.
  3. We use Anki on an iPad and make & annotate graphics on the iPad. There are lots of free/cheap image editor for the iPad. There are some options for marking up photos in the iOS itself. I actually really like graphics apps that use layers. Layers makes it easy to use the same base image for multiple flashcards, but masking/highlighting different areas.
  4. Was the spelling portion of annual testing a multiple choice test? A multiple choice spelling test is very different from other spelling activities. One of my DD’s is a struggling speller and the other is a natural speller. Multiple choice spelling tests did not reflect either of their abilities accurately.
  5. Another thing that struck me was comparing the activities of making bricks while pretending to be slaves and jumping like the Maasai. In the slavery example, the teacher is the Egyptian guard and the students are slaves. The teacher tells the students “Get to work, you slaves. Get over there to one of those sand-colored tarps and get busy mixing that mud! Get busy and mix that mud!” The teacher is then told to walk around the room urging kids to mix the mud faster. In the jumping activity the article says “Children watch a decontextualized clip of som Maasai men jumping. Children are then required to jump for 30 seconds as high as they can.” In the hands of an inexperienced teacher, these two activities could be similar. A well meaning but inexperienced teacher could easily tell the kids to get over there and jump, keep on jumping, and jump higher, with the same tone of voice and the same urging that was used for the slavery activity. The kids then basically learn that teachers are the boss and kids are treated like slaves. That both damages the student-teacher relationship and undermines how awful slavery actually is. A skillful teacher could probably make a distinction between the activities, but most VBS teachers are just regular parent or teen volunteers who are not highly skilled in adapting activities.
  6. While I agree with most of HeighHo’s post, these suggestions gave me pause. Lifeguarding and first aid certification can lead to part time jobs while still in high school. Lifeguarding is a great summer job. First aid certification can make it easier to get babysitting jobs. Having study hall might make it possible for a student to take an AP class while holding a part time job. Having a part time job in high school will help students get a better understanding of how quickly money can disappear and how hard one has to work to earn money. Plus, money from a job in high school will mean that the student will have to take out less debt in college.
  7. What about requiring students to demonstrate financial literacy before allowing them to take out a loan? While I don’t like the idea of adding another hurdle to higher education, making sure that kids actually know what they are getting into when they sign these loans might help. Whenever I have taken out a loan, the terms of the loan have always been explained to me. However, I have never had to demonstrate that I actually understand the terms of the loan. It is way too easy to tune out the explanation. (I’m not saying whether or not I actually understood the terms of the loan, but rather that I never had to prove that I understood.) Proving financial literacy could be accomplished in a variety of ways: - Passing a standardized test about financial literacy - Having a credit score above a certain threshold (student’s credit score, not parent’s) - Portfolio review that includes looking at use of credit cards, checking account, job history, past and future budgets, job prospects for selected major, etc. What if the ability to take out a loan was similar to getting a driver’s license? My daughter is working on getting her driver’s license, and it is a long process. In addition to the age requirements, she has to have a minimum number of hours of classwork, pass a written test, log a minimum number of hours behind the wheel, watch a video about the the dangers of distracted and drunk driving, and pass a road test. She has been working on the process for over a year, and after she gets her provisional license, it will be several more years later before she has a full, unrestricted driver’s license. What if taking out a loan requires passing a written test, being a named user on a check account or credit card with a minimum number of transactions for a minimum number of months, and watching a video about the dangers of financial bankruptcy? Then also have a cap on the maximum amount of the loan. While kids under 18 currently can’t have a credit card in their own names, they can be authorized users on a parent’s credit card much younger. Or they could get a secured/prepaid credit card. Many banks have free checking accounts for students.
  8. The problem that I have with the “click language” is that children are told practically nothing about the language before being asked to make up words in the language. I think that presenting a new language is fine. Trying to imitate the sounds of a new language is fine. Trying out names in a new language is fine. However, inventing words in a new language while knowing practically nothing about the language is crossing the line. Why not have the kids try to imitate actual words and provide translations of the words? It doesn’t matter whether or not the native speakers of the language hear it. The damage is done because the impressionable young minds start thinking that they have ownership of a language that they really know nothing about. I could easily see a kindergarten age child participating in that activity and telling other kids that he can “speak African” while making up random sounds. I could picture a an older bully taking the information from that “lesson” and making clicking sounds to tease someone from Africa. Calbear’s example of people pretending to speak Chinese to tease other kids is a great real-life example of how hurtful the situation can become.
  9. Thanks. She ended up spending a year and a half on prealgebra. She would be happy sticking with prealgebra because she would rather have easy math and be done faster, but she is definitely ready for algebra in the fall. I tried to explain earlier why I label this kid as non-stem. She has shown a very clear preference for a non-stem activity over the course of several years. I do not label her as non-stem simply due to how well she does in math or how much she (does not) enjoy math. Mostly, I say she is non-stem mostly due to how she chooses to spend the her time and attention in a non-stem field. She may change her interests in a few years, but for now she is not a stem person. Thank you for the recommendation for Derek Owens, I will look into that program for Algebra.
  10. This was not our experience with Horizons prealgebra. While DD struggled with a few things, I do not recall having problems for a topic before the topic was introduced. There were times that DD did not know how to do a problem; however, I was able flip back to previous lessons and show her where the topic had indeed been introduced. Eventually DD learned to flip back on her own to look up concepts. The lack of a table of contents made looking up concepts difficult, but it was doable.
  11. It is a year and a half later, and I thought I’d give an update in case anyone ends up with a kid in a similar situation and looks up this thread. DD finished up Horizons 6 in the middle of 6th grade. I decided to start Saxon 8/7. It was a bust. So then I switched her to Dolciani Pre-algebra. It was also a bust. Finally, I switched to the last program I had, Horizons Pre-algebra, and it worked out. I had to give up on having her write out the problems. It just wasn’t going to happen with this particular kid at that particular time. Horizons Pre-algebra ended up being a good fit and she finished it at the end of 7th grade. So, she spent a year and a half doing pre-algebra and she is now well positioned to start Algebra in 8th grade. I also got her standardized test scores back and her math scores improved over last year, so Horizons Pre-algebra worked well for this kid. There is a chance that she will go to school for 8th grade, so I am glad that she is ready to start a new math book at the beginning of the fall, like everyone else. There is also a chance that she will stay homeschooled and want to either graduate early or have a very light senior year, so starting Algebra 1 in the fall and doing only one year of Algebra 1 makes sense.
  12. The introductory workbook is all level 1 problems. The regular book has problems for all three levels. Unless you need a lot of practice with just level 1 problems you will be fine with the regular verbal problems book.
  13. Totally normal. No reason to be concerned. In fact, don’t be surprised if it also takes awhile to grasp that ten hundreds is a thousand.
  14. I agree with everyone above who would make “license” the direct object of “got.” I would accept diagramming “got out” as either (a) the verb “got” modified by the adverb “out”, just as you did with the second “out,” or (b) a phrasal verb. A phrasal verb often looks like a verb + adverb, but the combination has a different meaning from what the words mean individually. (A phrasal verb is different from a verb phrase. A phrasal verb looks like a verb + adverb, such as “get out”. A verb phrase is helping verbs + main verb, such as “can get”.) When trying to decide if a word combination is a phrasal verb, I will often look it up in a dictionary that includes definitions of phrasal verbs. One of my dictionaries lists “get out” with the definition of “to produce,” which is the meaning used in this sentence. Your 10 year old did a great job diagraming the sentence!
  15. It’s a fine paper for 7th grade. She has good vocabulary, sentence structure, and mechanics. She also has solid topic sentences. However, the fact that the paragraphs were initially written independently does show. If you want to do more with this topic, here are some ideas. -Try rewriting the paper in the 3rd person and cut out half the exclamation points. Most academic writing is in the 3rd person. Taking out the “you” and “me” can be surprisingly difficult. - Pick an overall structure for the order of the rides. In the current paper, these seems to be no particular reason for the order of the rides. For example, she could organize the rides by type, location, ridership, length, tameness/wildness, age, or some other feature. Then add in transitions based on the organizing principle. If you do this, I recommend using only 3-5 ride for the paper. - Include more parallel information across the rides. While the current paper lists the name and location for each ride, some features are only mentioned in a few rides. For example, the type of car, seating arrangements, end point, and height restrictions are each described in multiple paragraphs, but not all. - Pick one of the roller coasters and go more in depth in it. Brainstorm about the different sections of the ride. Look for more sensory details and emotional responses on each part of the ride to give a fuller experience. - Write a paper that makes recommendations for different rides for different types of people. Instead of simply describing each ride, you daughter will have to analyze and evaulate the rides, which is a higher order thinking skill.
  16. What worked for my DD who struggled with spelling was repetition, lots and lots of repetition. While I used All About Spelling, I added in a ton of review of previously taught words. We spent far more time on reviewing old words than on learning anything new.
  17. Farrar, Thanks for the feedback! I find it so helpful to get someone else’s views on DD’s writing. I know that she is on the right path; I just don’t know how far along she is compared to her peers. In the second composition, it sounds like tightening up the first two paragraphs into one would have made the purpose of the composition more clear. I think two things added to the bloat in the intro: she couldn’t decide between two different opening hooks and tried to incorporate both, and she is still new to figuring out how much background info to include. DD tends to have long rambling sentences that say the same thing in multiple ways. It sounds like she still needs more pruning.
  18. Farrar, thanks for the feedback. I”m glad you liked the intro for the first composition. That intro puts together a lot of concepts that I’ve been working on with her: brainstorming, types of intros, parallel structure, and old-new flow. The intro probably took a quarter to a third of of the entire time to write the entire composition. The second composition was supposed to be answer a question DD came up with—“Why did Johnny adhere to Rab’s teaching and not Mr. Laphams?” Basically, DD recognized that both Rab and Mr. Lampham tried to get Johnny to be a better person, but Mr. Lapham failed while Rab succeeded. I didn’t think of the composition as literary criticism or thesis-based, but it was supposed to be more than a summary. Do you have any suggestions for making the purpose of the composition clearer?
  19. If you want something only a tiny step up from two piece puzzles, what about the game HISS? You match pieces to build a snake, matching colors. Sometimes you have to rotate the pieces to get the colors to match. https://www.amazon.com/Gamewright-5219-Hisss-Card-Game/dp/B00005NQE8/ref=sr_1_1?s=toys-and-games&ie=UTF8&qid=1550236601&sr=1-1&keywords=hiss Something a bit harder would be the game Carcasonne. You have to match different tiles to connect roads, towns, fields, etc. You could just play with matching up the tiles without actually playing the game. Then after she can match up the tiles well, you still have an awesome game that is fun even for adults to play. https://www.amazon.com/Z-Man-Games-ZM7810-Carcassonne/dp/B00NX627HW/ref=sr_1_1?s=toys-and-games&ie=UTF8&qid=1550237518&sr=1-1&keywords=carcassonne
  20. Here is another composition. It took DD about 12 hours spread across an entire month to produce it. I coached her very extensively at each stage of the process, especially with the brainstorming, outlining, and revising. She did convert the outline to a first draft by herself. This composition is very heavily influenced by the Lost Tools of Writing, because DD and I spent a semester on LToW last spring. However, I would not consider it to be a LToW essay. ******** Johnny was the best apprentice silversmith on all of Hancock's wharf, but he did not treat people with respect or kindness. In Johnny Tremain by Esther Forbes, he called people “squeak pig”, “you lazy good for nothing dish mops”, and “pig-of-a-louse”. He was constantly being rude and unforgiving to people. Johnny, easily annoyed, threw insults without thought, judged people harshly, and was mean to innocent people. Two men, Mr. Lapham and Rab, tried to change Johnny’s cruel habits. Mr. Lapham tried to change Johnny’s horrible ways by asking him to be more patient. Mr. Lapham wanted Johnny to accept some people’s mistakes without yelling at them. Although Mr. Lapham’s intentions were good, he did not make a lasting effect on Johnny’s horrid behavior. Rab, on the other hand, wanted Johnny to be kind, genteel, and forgiving to everyone who makes a mistake. Rab wanted Johnny to think about his words, small or large, before saying them. Johnny tried Rab’s way and was more polite. Rab was more successful at changing Johnny’s behavior for four reasons: different circumstance, different method of teaching, different events after attempting to change, and differences between Mr. Lapham and Rab. One reason Rab made a more lasting effect on Johnny was that Johnny was surrounded with different circumstances at the Laphams compared to the print shop. At the Lapham’s Dove and Dusty needed to be forced and pushed to get any work done. Without Johnny’s constant bossyness, the shop would have failed due to poor work. In the Lapham household, it was necessary for Johnny to boss everyone around whereas at Rab’s print shop Johnny had no one to look after. He was at the bottom of the pecking order. Johnny had a different perspective at this point; most people had the authority to boss him ruthlessly, yet they did not. Everyone treated him with respect and kindness, so no fights or anger broke out. Because of Rab’s nurturing environment, Johnny was more motivated to change. Another reason why Rab was more successful was because Mr. Lapham and Rab had different teaching approaches. Mr. Lapham was much more direct, clear cut, strict, and bossy. Mr. Lapham liked to embarrass the boys as they learned their lessons. Johnny had to read bible verses saying that pride was bad. Rab, on the other hand, hinted, suggested, and questioned Johnny more. He asked Johnny why he went out of his way to make people feel bad without telling Johnny it was wrong. Mr. Lapham’s commanding strict way of teaching didn’t affect Johnny as well as Rab’s gentle coaching did. The next reason why Rab was more successful than Mr. Lapham was because the events after attempting changing his ways were vastly different. Just after Mr. Lapham tried to change Johnny’s behavior, Mr. Hancock asked for a prestigious basin, which required a lot of work and attention. The new project only made Johnny bossier as he tried to get everything perfectly finished. While hard at work, Johnny was sabotaged by his co-workers and his hand was forever crippled. After taking up Rab’s advice, Johnny got new friends, Sukey and Sam Adams, and enjoyed time with them while eating pie. With his new attitude, Johnny got better rapport with the customers he encountered. Trying to change for Mr. Lapham resulted in a worse situation, but changing for Rab made Johnny’s life better. The last reason why Rab was more successful was because Rab was more similar to Johnny than Mr. Lapham was to Johnny. Mr. Lapham grew up in different times, and generations from Johnny. He could have been Johnny’s grandfather! Mr. Lapham was not very successful and his shop was suffering, so Johnny did not see a reason to follow in his footsteps and take his advice. However, Rab was only a few years older than Johnny. In addition, Rab was a good role model because did not slack on his work, and helped a successful business. Johnny did not follow Mr Lapham’s advice because Johnny did not want to end up like him, unorganized, poor, and lazy while Johnny followed Rab’s teaching because he was a hard working, smart boy, more similarly aged to Johnny. Although, a hard smart worker, the best on Hancock's wharf, Johnny clearly needed to change his attitude towards customers, co-workers, and people. Rab was able to change Johnny’s behavior when Mr. Lapham could not for four reasons: different circumstance, different method, different events after attempting to change, and differences between Mr. Lapham and Rab. If your teaching isn’t working, try a more supportive approach like Rab. He hints, suggests and rewards unlike Mr. Lapham who bosses, lectures, and punishes.
  21. Paradox5, thanks! She was very heavily coached!
  22. WTM Grammar might not be a good fit for you and your DS. There are many other grammar programs, each with its own approach. My favorite grammar programs include - The Sentence Family - Michael Clay Thompson Grammar - KISS Grammar - Analytical Grammar They are all very different and come in very different price points.
  23. In the main clause, the direct object of “planned” is the complete infinitive phrase “to destroy both him and his tribe.” Within the infinitive phrase, the object of “to destroy” is “both him and his tribe.” I like to think of the complete verbal phrase acting as a single part of speech, but within the phrase there are different parts. I don’t have access to the book, but I imagine that the infinitive phrase would be on its own little stand.
  24. You can use the “type” feature in Anki where you type your answer and it compares what you typed with the answer, showing any differences. You would need to make a custom card type for this. The card type would have two fields: - audio (where you record yourself saying the word along with a clarifying sentence, if necessary) - word (where you type only the word) The template for the front of the card would have the following: Type the word you heart. {{audio}} {{type:word}} The template for the back of the card would have the following: {{FrontSide}} As they review the deck, they would type the words and when they tell Anki to show answer (probably by pressing the <enter> key), Anki will display a comparision of what they typed with the correct spelling. Because Anki uses spaced repetition, you would need to teach the proper use of the “again”, “hard”, “good”, and “easy” buttons.
  25. My DD didn’t show a hand preference until she was older. I don’t remember the exact age. When I was teaching her handwriting, I let her pick which hand to use each time. Sometimes she would get frustrated and want to switch hands, but I wouldn’t let her switch hands mid-stream. For example, if she started writing with one hand, I told her she couldn’t switch hands in the middle of the word. If she had multiple worksheets, she might do one worksheet with one hand and the next worksheet with the other. She tended to use her left hand for things on the left side and her right hand for things on the right side. Eventually she settled on using one hand for handwriting, and the other hand for pretty much everything else.
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