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sweet2ndchance

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  1. In the Hands of a Child units include all the pictures and labels and such if I remember correctly. There is a science curriculum out there that is meant for many grade levels and the whole premise is lapbooking your way through science. I used to have it and I can see what the covers looked like in my head but I cannot remember the name of them. If I find it or remember it, I'll update this post. ETA: Great Science Adventures by Dinah Zike and Susan Simpson is what I was trying to remember. They call them graphic organizers but we used them as lapbook components and the 'library books' that it directs you to make we just put in the lapbook in a library pocket just made from a generic template or you can buy them.
  2. Learning to read is not linear for most children. It happens in jumps and spurts and it's more than okay to slow down or just practice what they know for a while rather than frustrate them by pushing forward when they aren't ready. They will be ready to move forward when they are ready to move forward and no sooner. I would put the book away for a while, keep practicing what she knows with games and short readers at or below her level and try moving on in the lessons again maybe in early fall. If she still isn't ready in early fall, try again around her birthday. Sooner or later, she will be cognitively ready for more lessons.
  3. If all you were looking for is free curriculum suggestions and you weren't actually looking for any input on the reality of homeschooling a special needs child as your original post suggested, there is a sticky post with a curated list of free curriculum that is out there. I know now that you aren't looking for input despite your OP but for anyone else who might happen upon this thread by searching, my intent was not to just give my opinion when it wasn't wanted. If I were asked by a friend with a special needs child, limited time and limited money for suggestions on curriculum out there, I would tell them the same things I said here. I wouldn't want to encourage a friend to do something like homeschooling without being completely real with them about the time and money it really takes to homeschool a child with special needs. By encouraging them to try something that isn't likely to work out well for them without major lifestyle changes, I would feel like I was throwing them in the deep end of the pool and I wouldn't want to do that to a friend. Sorry to rain on your parade but I felt obligated to warn you of the dark looming clouds. Having homeschooled a special needs child who also was mainstreamed in public school for part of his education and is now an adult, I felt I had valuable insight of the options available and how to advocate for special needs students and the reality of trying to educate a special needs student at home.
  4. The extra information really does not change my opinion on this situation. Homeschooling is still not very likely to be a good fit unless they are willing to make some fairly drastic changes to their lifestyle to make it work. Either they need to reprioritize their budget as a dual income family to be able to afford at least a part time tutor who has experience with autistic children or they need to figure out how to have one of them stay home full time to provide their son's special needs education. If neither of those are a possibility, then public school really is the best place for their son and they need to address their concerns with the bullying with the school. Homeschooling a child on the autism spectrum is often nothing like homeschooling a neurotypical child. Even high functioning autism usually requires lots of curriculum tweaking and can be very time intensive on the parent's part. That's why ASD diagnosis pretty much guarantees the child qualifies for an IEP in public school. A run of the mill education is not likely to work for the majority of students with any form of ASD. I am unaware of any free or inexpensive curriculum for homeschooling that I would blindly recommend for a family interested in homeschooling their autistic child. So many of the usual options are unlikely to be a good fit without significant modification that I would not feel comfortable recommending them without sitting down with the parent who would do most of the instruction and get more details on the child's specific needs and how much time and money they can realistically dedicate to educating their special needs child.
  5. Even if it is legal to leave a 9 year old home alone in most communities in this country, we can't be sure that this particular 9yo is functioning mentally and emotionally on a 9yo level. Even high functioning autism impairs how well an individual functions in emergency situations. You can bet that if CPS became involved for any reason, this would be a large part of their argument of why this particular child should not be left home alone despite the fact they are physiologically old enough by the law. That matter aside, most free/cheap curricula require research, planning, supplies and parent involvement. If you want someone else to do those things for you, then you are going to have to pay them for their time and effort either by way of a tutor or by purchasing their curricula with the work done for you. A single parent working 50 hours a week and raising three kids, at least one of them with special needs, is unlikely to have the time or the money for homeschooling much less trying to do it for cheap/free which will be a huge time commitment. I was a single parent once. I had to put my kids in public school for a while not because I wanted to but because I could only wear so many hats as one person. Once my situation changed and I was able to devote the time, energy and money to homeschooling and the circumstances warranted it, I was able to homeschool some of my kids again. I understand this child is not feeling good emotionally about going to school. Special needs kids are often targets for bullying. Is the school aware of what is going on? Has the mother contacted the teachers? The principal? The school district? Has she brought up her concerns with her son's IEP committee? What has been done to help this child feel better about going to school? Is homebound education an option with a tutor that will work with her son until he feels emotionally strong enough to try school again? Can he be in a segregated special education classroom instead of mainstreamed until he is emotionally stronger? Are they working with him on emotional coping strategies and social cues to help him cope with what has already happened and learn to integrate himself better to make himself less of a target for bullies with quirky autism behaviors? There are literally thousands of avenues I would explore first for this child before I would recommend homeschooling for this family in this particular situation. Because the mother would have to literally change her entire lifestyle to make homeschooling a viable option for her family, I would only suggest homeschooling as an absolute last resort when everything else had failed and even then I would be hesitant. .
  6. I really enjoyed reading The Brave Learner and I am by no means a new homeschooler (3 young adult children who were homeschooled in elementary and middle school, 2 middle school aged children and finishing up kindergarten for the last time with my youngest and only remaining homeschooled child.) I think it works equally well for new homeschoolers and burned out homeschoolers looking for something to renew that spark of "this is why I do this". It does lean toward less structure in homeschooling and more toward unschool-ish things but if you like Brave Writer and Julie's writings about that, you will probably like The Brave Learner too.
  7. I received an email from Currclick about mid-April that they would be closing at the end of the month and downloads would no longer be available a couple of weeks after that. So about a month's notice before I couldn't get my items from my Currclick library anymore. I also received an email from Math Mammoth in late April reminding me that if I purchased Math Mammoth downloads from Currclick that I needed to get them downloaded ASAP before they were gone. I had some purchases on there dating back over ten years ago. It's amazing that for the most part, they let you keep your items stored on their servers indefinitely. I had one publisher that had updated their product and wouldn't let me access my outdated copy any longer. They wanted me to buy the updated version without even a discount for having previously purchased the outdated version. I decided to pass and find a different resource. That was the only problem I ever had on Currclick's website and it wasn't even really their fault, it was the publishers.
  8. That it is, lol! I can't stand it but my ex-huband loved big English breakfasts with eggs, beans, tomatoes, mushrooms, bacon AND sausages and marmite on toast. We usually had a big English breakfast for dinner at least once a month. Luckily there aren't any agriculture restrictions on currants where I currently live (pun unintended lol). I know a lot of places restrict them though because of white pine blister rust. I want to try gooseberries and red, white and black currants and jostaberries. I've been trying to convince my dh (not my ex lol) to let me plant a hedgerow modeled after the ones I saw in England lol.
  9. I had forgotten about Bisto lol. My ex-husband is British and we had his mother ship us Bisto, Coleman's prepared English mustard, chocolate oranges, Marmite, black currant squash, tea.... My ex-mil is the reason I've been researching how to grow my own currants lol. She is also the one that introduced me to English curry and gravy and chips (what we call french fries).
  10. The best ones are the ones that also carry British candy (its been so long since ive had proper milky buttons lol) .
  11. I've always loved Twinnings tea. Irish Breakfast was my favorite as well as Vanilla tea and a summer berry one that I've forgotten the name of at the moment. I keep meaning to try decaf Irish Breakfast since we have given up all caffeine. Does it taste relatively the same as the regular Irish Breakfast? In large metro areas in the US, you can usually find at least one British tea shop, typically owned by a British citizen living in the US. They almost always have at least Twinnings and PG Tips teas. And often other assorted British goods that they have imported directly from the UK rather than from US distributors of British companies.
  12. It just came out in March! So far the second book is just as good as the first, we aren't quite done with it yet. ;-)
  13. Misses I wanted to like Torchlight Kindergarten, I really did. I even tried just ditching the schedule and using the books but so many of them were just "meh" that we ended up ditching most it. I will probably just use the book list for suggestions from here on out. Hits Logic of English is my new favorite language arts for elementary, especially Foundations for kindergarten. It is everything I wanted SWR to be but I just had to come up with all my own ideas for the activities most of the time. My son likes it, it makes my life easier to do just "do the next thing" rather than have to constantly come up with ideas for teaching wiggly little boys to write and read. This is my 4th and last little boy to teach and I will admit, I've been doing this since 2002 and I am just tired lol. Letting someone else do the thinking for me this last go round has been just what I needed. Ivy by Kathrine Coville, used in Torchlight kinder, has been one of my son's favorite read alouds this year. It is just the right level for a kindergarten read aloud and we even got the next book in the series, Ivy and the Goblins, and we are reading through it right now. I wish this had been around when my other kids were little, it is such a sweet story and just perfect for reading aloud to 5 and 6 year olds.
  14. I have absolutely no idea how an Apple Pencil works, is it just a stylus? If so, we've really enjoyed the Writing Wizard app by L'Escapadou and Letter School - Learn To Write by Letterschool Enabling Learning. I do remember that Writing Wizard allows you to enter your own words for the kids to practice writing in the paid app. I can't remember if the Letter School one could do that too.
  15. In my experience, raising 6 kids past the age of learning to write and remediating many other people's children who came to me with writing problems, a tripod grip does not just happen for most kids especially if they have developed a less than ideal grip. It has to be taught the same way you teach a child to hold a fork, spoon or knife correctly. It is much easier to gently correct them from the time the are old enough to pick up a spoon or a fork or a pencil but it can be corrected for an older child. I would try to make as many of his writing utensils as I could either triangular shaped or put tripod grippers on them. Make several different types of grips available so that he might take a liking to one of them. (I'll try to link some of the grips I've found most effective for remediating later. I can't seem to make links work from my phone) You can also gently correct his grip and encourage him to write that way. Praise like crazy when you see him using the tripod grip to try and write, even if his first attempts are less legible than the words written with a fist grip. I wouldnt force him to use a tripod grip from now on but each time he writes, remind him to try and write like big boys do and hold the pencil properly. It may take months of reminding him but in my experience the fist grip is one of the easier grips to correct as long as there is nothing physically wrong causing them to use that grip and it is just a preference they have developed. If fine motor is lagging as well (can he play with legos or other toys with small pieces?) then it might take a little long but just be sure to offer lots of fine motor activites as well as gentle correction on the pencil grip and he will get there. ETA: Wrist band type grip correctors really help with fist grip kids. Like this: HandiWriter but you can make one yourself with a large rubber band. The handle style grippers also seem to work well for a fist grip. Once they get used to holding the pencil correctly, they can graduate to this style gripper or some kids may prefer it from the start.
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