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Everything posted by Msweetpea2

  1. My kiddos actually love TGATB handwriting. They ask for it every day 😂 I think because it has something fun to draw and/or color, but also I like the size progression from larger to smaller and my DS8 is making strides in penmanship because of it... Obviously, YMMV - the dotted lines really helped my kids feel confident before writing 'on their own', but I'm sure some kids wouldn't like that. (Just like some kids don't want colorful, art stuff and would rather just get straight to point of writing letters.) Hope you find what works best! ❤️
  2. We are in the middle of a big move (actual move date is only 2 weeks away!) and I hope we find some other families that homeschool and want to hang out occasionally for fun activities (and extra points if they are more crafty than me! lol) Thank you for replying! I have a relative that worked at Goodwill Books and after reading through the posts, I snagged HO Vol 1 along with the Teachers and Student guide for under $25 including shipping! I know I don't technically need them until fall (and I may not even end up using the guides), but maybe we'll finish American History earlier than I think and I'll be ready to go. I really love your suggestion of including everyone during SOTW read aloud and allowing my oldest to independently read and complete a more detailed timeline. My 10yo (second child) also loves creating fact lists, although hers are extra pretty since she's my artist and the doodles often compete for space with the facts 😂. I actually feel much better now about history, and following your link, I found that SOTW and HO chapter/topic side by side pdf! Thanks again 🙂
  3. Thank you so much! I've been reading through that thread and wracking my brain about how to make it all work. My oldest is actually 11 right now, but will be 12 this summer. I decided in Jan to skip world history and switch to American History through the summer and then start back up in Ancients in Sept. I SO appreciate the coloring book suggestions! I've been searching TPT to see if they have any decent American History coloring books that follow the general layout of the Complete History of the United States. (Mostly, I'm looking for something low-key, like a coloring page or fun wordcross etc, to keep the younger kids engaged while I read a chapter or two... they all LOVE Liberty Kids and my 11 yo is supplementing with Uncle Sam and I from Notgrass, as well as a million related books.) I'm still torn on whether to move forward with SOTW in the fall, as my older two (11 and 10 currently) were super over ancients by the halfway point when we through it the first time (they were 7 and 8yo... which is how old my younger two will be in the fall). 😱🤔😬 History is actually one of my most favorite subjects, and for some dumb reason seems to be the one that I struggle with the most. It may be because I REALLY want it to be a family subject, but the kids are at such varying abilities, attention spans and learning styles, that it's just not meant to be 😭
  4. Hi! I'm trying to prep for later this year and have a question about the newer editions of SOTW. I have the older books for all 4 volumes, and I have the vol 1 activity pack (in pdf format, so I can print however many copies I need for my 4 kids). Are the newer edition student pages that much different? I can't tell anything from the samples since they just show the exact same few pages that I already have. Also, are the additional coloring pages worth it? Since I'll have kiddos 7-12yo in Sept, I'd like to make sure there are some fun coloring pages for the littles, so I'm happy to spend the $8 if there are a decent amount of new images. Also, has anyone ever used the Review Question Worksheets (separate $8 pdf download) for older kids that are going through SOTW a second time? My oldest enjoys writing, but I don't want to bore her. (She's read through all SOTW volumes for fun a few times now, so I'm debating letting her do more independent history while I teach the 6, 8 and 10 yo together). Thanks!!
  5. YOU. ARE. THE. BEST!!!! Thanks for this PSA ❤️ ❤️ ❤️
  6. Hi, thanks for replying! So if my boys already know (and have mastered) the first 26 phonograms, does it still make sense to start with AAR1 or was your 7yo good with AAR2? I've done the first 5 lessons of AAS1 with my DD10 and they are totally just review (but fun for her and a good way to get used to the tiles), but I could easily see both my boys being able to do these first AAS1 lessons with zero problems.
  7. Thanks for replying! Are you saying that you taught him through AAS or that he was already reading (albeit slowly) before starting AAS 1?
  8. Okay, so I think that makes sense (and explains why my DD10 is reading Harry Potter but her spelling is... interesting. 😂) My confusion was more in regards to the fact that DS8 and DS6 have mastered all sounds of the first 26 phonograms which is where AAS 1 starts (from what I’ve read in the Teacher’s Guide, lesson 1 is just reviewing the first 26 phonograms until you confirm student has mastered them.) I used RLTL - Reading Lessons thru Literature, and after the first 26 phonograms are mastered, you start a spelling list and do a few words a day while learning new multi-letter phonograms. Then you review and read the lists that you wrote. It helped DD10 learn to read eventually, but clearly not spell (she knows phonograms well but didn’t learn the spelling rules in any meaningful way.) I’ve bookmarked Elizabeth’s Syllables page to start incorporating as well! FWIW, DD10 and DS8 both have glasses to help their sweet little eyes since they each have one eye that is mildly nearsighted and one that is majorly farsighted, along with astigmatisms and mild tracking issues. (I still feel really bad that I didn’t figure it all out sooner. I knew something was off but it took 3 separate optometrists for me to find one who could actually help.) I just want to help DS8 (he only turned 8 in Dec) learn to read as he’s realizing that he doesn’t want to be left out from certain books that his sisters talk about, and he wants to contribute to reading instructions during school (I’m sure this is mostly because he enjoys being ‘in charge’ every once in a while 😂). Thank you all for taking the time to reply! I really appreciate it ❤️
  9. I just bought AAS for my DD10 that reads but struggles with spelling (I started with level 1 even though she knows the 75 phonograms because I want to really cement spelling help for her and also because it will boost her confidence to start from a place she 'knows'). I taught her to read using RLTL which is OG style and has been great for DS8 and DS6 for now. I ALSO purchased Phonics Pathways for DS8 who is not reading yet (this is due to some eye issues similar to DD10, which has now been corrected.. and also some 'attention' issues). DS8 and DS6 know the first 26 phonograms (again, OG style.... they know ALL the sounds each one makes) and we are just starting on the multi-letter phonograms. Here's where I'm confused and maybe you can tell me I'm not crazy. I spent a good amount of time reading through Phonics Pathway and AAS. I completely, 100% understand AAS and how to teach it and can see how it 'works'. Is this NOT the same as teaching reading?! I understand AAR says that children are learning to decode while AAS is teaching them to encode, but is this not kind of simultaneously learned? I tried to do a brief lesson with DS8 with Phonics Pathway and he seemed so thrown off. "Why are we only saying the short a sound?! /a/ says a, a, ah" (sorry can't figure out the correct diacritical marks on a keyboard right now). The whole lesson was a bust. He eventually was able to read each cvc word but was annoyed at the process of a s-a sa sa-t sat. He MUCH preferred just pointing to each letter s-a-t while saying their sound and then blending/reading them. Okay, so I've accepted that maybe Phonics Pathway isn't the best choice for us and that's fine. Do I really need to buy AAR 1 since it covers the 26 phonograms DS8 and DS6 have mastered? Can I NOT use AAS to finish teaching them phonograms (and reading) at the same time? I have no experience with AAR (obviously) and if you all say it's different or super helpful, I will trust that. I may be mistaken and wrong for the past few years, but doesn't most OG teach reading THROUGH spelling? (ex. If I were to dictate /c/ /a/ /t/ both of my boys would easily be able to write the word cat... and then they would tell me 20 words that rhyme with cat including some completely made up words that make them laugh.) Help. Am I losing my mind here?
  10. Thank you - your PSA was very helpful! I actually have SOTW 1-3 but not volume 4 (it was out of stock at my local bookstore). I probably should have specified that the history is for this year. I started my school year earlier this month and will be going through summer with the hopes of "restarting" back on track in the fall. My biggest problem is that I've been trying to find a way to do both general world history alongside American history because my kids are really into learning about America right now, but they are also into Ancient Egypt, Greece and Rome, the whole Viking era, and medieval knights. I'll probably go with American since my eldest hasn't had a solid foundation of that from me (other than the crazy amount of fictional novels she has read 😂). I appreciate your input!
  11. Thanks for replying again! I definitely think my kids' interests lie more in Pilgrims, Colonies, Revolutionary War to Civil War, Explorers, Pioneers, and turn of the 20th century (Industrial Revolution/scientific advancement/early inventions to say... WW1). I'm not planning on going in depth from 1920s through 2020 with them. I'll just do a 30,000 ft overview for now and go more in depth as they get older.
  12. Thank you!! Super helpful from someone who has used both - I have some kiddos who do well learning with just oral narration, but most of my kids are visual. 2 like workbook type activities and 1 is a little artist who like visually drawing what she learned as a way to remember. Did you use the Revolutionary / Civil war Masterbooks as well?
  13. Thank you! Did you add in the Revolutionary War and Civil War add ons? Also, for related activity/coloring page are you just using something you find online from a random site?
  14. Thank you! The cover wouldn't naturally entice me 😂 But I like hearing this. It would save me money to get this and use it alongside SOTW.
  15. Thanks for the suggestion! I had briefly looked at Masterbooks a while back. It says the Teacher's guide is 3 hole punched - does this mean you can remove individual worksheet pages to make copies? (I have some kids that really enjoy worksheets... 🤷‍♀️ 😂)
  16. Thank you! I'll definitely check that out. I prefer a Christian worldview of history. The challenge seems to be finding a balance. I'm not interested in history that paints all people of all groups bad OR perfect. I'm trying to show my kiddos that these people did awesome, hard things that required courage (and sometimes a little supernatural favor! 😂)... but they were also human beings and made mistakes along the way. Some of my kids are very black and white and some appreciate shades of grey. They all LOVE history and find it very exciting, so I want to encourage that but I find most texts that are 'balanced' are really just dry textbook style facts, and most of the easy to read/enjoy versions aren't very balanced (one way OR another). I haven't heard of KONOS and appreciate the suggestion to check it out 🙂 !
  17. I have not, but I'll go check it out now - thank you!
  18. Thank you! I'll check them out. I appreciate the snapshots! I was also just reading about the whole Hakim Concise. Maybe I can make it work for all ages, or if that isn't vibing, I can have DD11 do that while I just read and do light stuff from SOTW 4... I was hoping to find something that was just a specific American History with some fun review pages that ISN'T dry, but I can always cobble a few things together. Thanks again!
  19. Hi! Anyone have suggestions for favorite American History that I can do with all of my kiddos? DS6, DS8, DD10 and DD11... I've done SOTW 1 with my girls, I've done the general TGATB (which touches on the 4 different 'time periods' per year but the stories are PAINFUL to read and I have to edit as I go so I don't say bad words under my breath 😬). Kids are enjoying the 50 States Notgrass for Geography, but the trial/sample of their American History (Our Star Spangled History) is so. dang. dry...even I'm yawning to get through it. No slam on Notgrass, I think textbooks can totally have their place and the kids are clearly super into the geography. Thoughts?? Can I just do SOTW4? If not, what are some good American History curriculums that can be taught family style (I'm also totally okay with printing out student guides for one age group and separate guides for another. Usually, my girls like to write/answer questions along with drawing and my boys enjoy drawing while orally answering review questions.) Hit me with your best shot - I'd really like to do American History with them this year to go alongside the geography. They are all very into maps and the USA right now, and I need to purchase in the next week or so. Thank you! ❤️
  20. Thank you! Just wanted to see if I could make 'less is more' work with Phonic Pathways, but after looking through the teaching guide samples of AAS on their site, it appears to be the best fit for her (and something I am confident I can teach). I appreciate you confirming its awesome and for pointing out that thread about AAS! I originally did a search for phonic pathways and not AAS, so I missed all that good information. I also haven't been on the boards in a while... I really had to pare down last year for a variety of reasons and it was all overwhelming. So, for the writing portion of AAS, do you ONLY use a whiteboard, or do you also keep a notebook? I know DD10 has enjoyed reading through past spelling lists as practice and also to feel confident in what she's already accomplished. I'm fine with not getting the student packet if its not any significant benefit 🙂 Thanks again for your reply! I guess I could have done a better search and spared a long-worded post 😂
  21. Hi All! It's been a hot minute since I've been on the boards. Yowza.. reading my previous posts was fun. Apparently every August I had an existential crisis about being a perfect mom and teacher 🙈 . Thankfully, now that I'm homeschooling all 4 of my kids AND at different ages/learning levels, I've had to lessen my grip on everything (either that or I've just lowered my expectations significantly 😂). It really is amazing what a few years and some perspective can do! Anyway, my DD10 needs help with spelling. She knows all of the phonograms and is reading decently challenging books (thank you to everyone who encouraged me when I was panicking about her not being able to read much at 8yo! Turns out she DID have some visual issues and once we addressed that her confidence soared!) I'm well versed in the OG method of teaching phonograms. We used RLTL and even did most of the spelling lists. If I sound out a word to her using phonograms, she will spell it correctly and most of it is automatic, but if she is trying to spell a word on her own... Lord I don't even know how she comes up with certain combinations. In gently speaking with her about it, she just doesn't really know or remember the spelling rules. She'll say, how do I know if I'm supposed to use /c/ or /k/ for this word, or if it's /ow/ or /ou/ in the middle of the word? I know we've gone over these before since she's capable of writing and encoding (and decoding) words with spaces between syllables, underlining multi-letter phonograms, bridging the silent e back to the vowel, etc... however, we haven't really used any curriculum that was ONLY for spelling based on phonograms to reinforce the rules. I'm about ready to pull the trigger on AAS1 because she still loves tactile games/cutouts etc and as much as I'm sure I will despise the physical tiles, she will probably excel with them. My only question is, since I just purchased Phonics Pathway (to help my DS8 with reading), could I use THAT for spelling also for DD10? I'm seeing it also teaches spelling but I have no experience with it and am unsure if that means it actually discusses spelling rules and gives space for practicing them or if the spelling is a by-product of learning phonograms to decode words. I would obviously be teaching them at separate times since my daughter would be able to start farther along in the book and they both need one on one time for his reading and her spelling. Yay? Nay? Is AAS just worth the money? I'd be going low-key with just the Teacher Manual, Student workbook (she loves having something physical that's hers) and Tiles. I really want to help her now before 'bad' spelling sticks in her mind... She LOVES to write little notes and made up plays etc, but is starting to be embarrassed and frustrated about knowing something isn't right, but not knowing how to fix it. I'm a visual learner with a photographic memory, so this sweet kiddo's education process has been a huge learning curve for me also!
  22. Can you expand a little bit on the prepared dictation? I'm guessing that's in further levels of RLTL. Do the passages include which words are on the spelling list or do you just identify which words your DD9 needs to practice? Do you have him write them down individually or have him copy the whole passage? Does he then spell them out loud for you?
 Sorry - I know you are busy so it's totally fine if you can't get back to me! I've definitely learned through just trying it out (I'm just trying to make it as smooth as possible for my DD8). I realized that I never had a lot of formal spelling, as vocabulary lists were used as spelling lists and since I have a photographic memory I would just look over lists a few time and visually remember how to spell them. (I don't know if that makes sense, but I'm realizing that because I'm very visual and so is my oldest, I haven't had to do as much 'work' with her, but I want to give her a good foundation. My DD6 on the other hand learns very differently and while she is young I want to give her all the right tools since she already gets frustrated that she doesn't remember things the same way.) 
 It sounds like separating them for this subject will be best. Thanks for all the advice!
  23. Okay, at the risk of sounding totally silly... what is the best way to teach the same level at different paces? I've read through the whole book. I totally understand the concept and both my daughters (8yo and 6, almost 7yo) know the basic 26 phonograms. I'm using RLTL for my DD6 mostly to help her learn to read and be more confident in sounding out words. I'm using RLTL for my DD8 mostly for spelling and as a toolkit for decoding challenging words (she she already reads well beyond her age/grade level). I used ElizabethB's website to help review the basics (thank you again for the link!) I'm super stumped how to start this though since I would be doing a slower pace for my DD6 and an accelerated pace for DD8. Do you just teach them at different times? Do I teach to DD6 first which will be review for DD8 and then extend her portion? We have a smaller area where we are doing homeschool and I will be writing stuff up on a chalkboard. I don't want to overwhelm or distract DD6 or make her feel inadequate (she already feels sad she can't read like her sister). I also don't want to drive DD8 bonkers by going so slowly she becomes uninterested. Thoughts? Advice? I'll be loosely using the author's suggestions for scheduling. DD6 will get 2 new phonograms per lesson with 12-15 spelling words per week. DD8 will get 4 new phonograms per lesson and 30ish spelling words per week (she may get more). I'm happy to do RLTL 3-4 times a week. I generally do 4 day weeks but can add on 20 min of this a 5th day until my DD6 is reading comfortably.
  24. Okay, so searching for those terms brings up a LOT of topics unrelated to them, so I am just trying to round out my Art stuff. I already have a book (Drawing with Children) and a resource (Art Tango) for teaching them art, but I would love something beautiful for them to study (or just admire). I'm hoping to find some way to use Art Cards to look at and review in the Morning during our 'Circle time' / Morning basket thing (I'm working on a fun name for it.. ;) ) AND for a picture study. I don't really want to spend 12 weeks on one artist a la SCM (although I've heard the studies themselves are great), and I like the look of the MP cards but is there a study that goes with them? We're an artistic, creative, musical family with a few type A personalities mixed in (super fun combo :P ) so Art, and especially gorgeous classical Art, is important. -I'm hoping for Morning Time Art pictures they can look at and we can briefly talk about. Bonus points if they tie into a Picture Study or Artist Study. -I'd like to spend maybe 2-4 weeks per Study (2 weeks if it's a Picture, 3-4 weeks if it's an Artist). I'll probably be doing the study 2x week as a 20 min 'class', and once of those times I will naturally segue into 30 min art lessons (drawing, color, etc). Honestly, my kids 'do art' every day. I can't think of a day there isn't coloring or colored pencils or chalk or paint lying around. They are super self sufficient in this way (glory, because I don't have that stamina). -Totally fine with both secular and church related resources. My husband is Catholic, I am a non box fitter (made that word up right now). We still study Saints and love the old icon artwork. -If it helps, we are studying Ancient History. TLDR: need some suggestions for favorite and most beautiful Art Cards - would prefer either larger prints or a book so I don't have a million cards getting shoved under the couch. Need some suggestions for a Picture or Artist Study that isn't 12 weeks long. They'll be used in different ways but Bonus Points if they tie together. Thank you all for your helpful suggestions and thoughtful replies to all of my posts! Seriously, I was so overwhelmed a month ago that I wanted to cry. You all gave some awesome advice and great nudges and I feel MUCH more confident about where we are heading and what I've picked out for my kids. If something isn't a perfect fit - NOT the end of the world. A lot of freedom and peace here in giving myself permission to do my best AND be okay if it doesn't work perfectly :thumbup1:
  25. Thank you so much! I am going to grab the primer 1 Autumn and the Teacher's help. I also purchased ELTL A and B (it was a combo book that I got at a great deal) I think it will be good to have since I'm fairly certain DD6 will love the slower pace of ELTL but DD8 will love the vocab, spelling, and writing in the Primer. I really appreciate you writing back!! It helped me pull the trigger to go buy it (and I also have a different nature study and am not too concerned about that) btw - ELTL B uses Alice in Wonderland... A few months ago I found a copy that was illustrated by Margaret Tarrant and have been all swoony trying to figure out how to implement - SO excited to hear CP uses it as well. :001_smile:
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