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Everything posted by whangty

  1. Thank you for these suggestions. I will check them out!
  2. Great question and point. I don't think he is doing much of organizing or outlining in his writing. It just seems that the act of writing just does not seem that natural to him. I have downloaded the treasured conversations and have been meaning to get started. I have been trying to tell him that writing is simply writing down one's thoughts and words. He does speak well and cohesively. Thx. for your response.
  3. Thank you so much for sharing this, which I find it particularly helpful as it is based on a real experience. The main takeaways for me are: improvement in writing takes practice (just like anything) and it make take a while. My kids too are STEM-oriented, esp. the older one. However, I genuinely have been surprised by the level of writing skills in my second son, esp. in relation to his other skills in other areas like math, reading comprehension, vocabulary, etc. I have relied on his school education thus far, but it seems that just like math I need to work with him at home on his writing as well. Thank you again!
  4. Great points. However, my older son in 6th grade seemed to have had much easier time with essays and writing in general when he was in 4th grade. I suppose every kid is different. I thought kid's writing can and does improve depending on how much they read. What do you think about this? My older son was and remains a voracious reader; my second son, less so.
  5. It sounds like Treasured Conversations might be a good program for my son. We will give it a try. Thx. so much for the tip!
  6. Would appreciate any tips or suggestions as to how I could help my 4th grade son to improve in writing. He has been an advanced student thus far -- ie. gifted program, top 1% on several standard tests like Cogat, ITBS, etc. However, when he began to practice for the writing portion (short essay to a prompt) of the SSAT, I started to notice that his writing could use a lot of improvement! His sentences are mostly very brief, lacking details, and do not connect to one another. For practice, I tried to have him write about random topics, but the result has been similar. It seems that writing is an uncomfortable practice for him and indeed he does not write much when asked. Any ideas or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
  7. Thank you square_25 for your response. My son dose ask a ton of questions for help when it comes to challenging and writing problems in certain weeks, esp. in intro to cp. And btw, my son goes to a private day school. Since you have mentioned precalc, I am wondering how the AoPS precalc class compares to intermediate algebra class in terms of difficulty. It seems that both intermediate algebra and precal are excellent classes, esp. for those students who are studying for AIME.
  8. Thank you for your response. However, my hunch is that as the classes become more advanced (intermediate level and beyond), the help offered from online class may become more helpful or even necessary, esp. for younger students who are trying to learn advanced materials. For example, my son is in intro to geo online currently. He was self-studying the geo book on his own, but he is currently stuck in chapter 7, although I think given enough time he can still do chapter 7 on his own. Glad that he will have the online class to help him when they hit chapter 7 in a couple of weeks. So, for intermediate algebra, I am concerned that the same scenario may repeat. My son is a rising 6th grader.
  9. Unfortunately, at intermediate level, I don't think I can be of much help. Even in majority of intro classes to be honest, I have not been of much help to my son in spite of my engineering background. This is precisely one of my main concerns: the more advanced the class gets, the more help my son would need from the AoPS resources offered via online class.
  10. Is it correct to think that the online class could be more helpful with more advanced classes (e.g. intermediate classes and beyond)? My son has taken following online classes: prealgebra b, intro to algebra a & b, intro to cp, and currently intro to geometry. However, for financial reasons, I am asking him to study the intermediate algebra and other intermediate classes/books on his own in the future. While I like to think that he can successfully study these classes/books on his own (since he has been pretty good at being an independent learner thus far), I cannot help but feel that online classes could make the learning easier and more fun. What do you think? Would my son be missing out a lot by not taking online intermediate classes and instead studying them on his own? For example, my son told me that there is no book for intermediate number theory class. Also, I suppose there is no book that one can study in place of "WOOT." What might be pros and cons of online class vs. self-study at intermediate level and beyond? Thx. much in advance for your response.
  11. I am considering enrolling my sons for the couple of Language Arts classes at a local AoPS academy for the summer: Mock Trial class for the rising 6th grader and Elementary School Book Club or Creative Writing class for a rising 4th grader. Two-weeks, three-hour day classes are available for just under $700, which I find pretty reasonable. My kids has had very good experiences with AoPS math classes thus far -- both online and at academy. Although I am inclined to believe pretty much all AoPS classes are high quality, I still like to hear from folks whose kids have taken these or other similar Language Arts classes at an AoPS academy. For sure, I expect these classes will provide more structured, fun, and group learning environment, which may be hard to duplicate at home. But, I hesitate slightly because some of what is taught at the academy can be picked up at home through independent studying, reading, etc. Thank you very much in advance for your response.
  12. Couple of comments: 1. I heard a lot of good things about AoPS contest prep classes including mathcounts classes (basic and advanced) from the students who actually took the classes on AoPS forum. Although motivated students could just do old tests, which are readily available for free, I believe the class can make the learning easier and more fun. My son took several AoPS classes, and he was in an AMC 10 class before dropping it to enroll at an AoPS academy class. He pretty much enjoyed them all. You can search for more related info on AoPS website including the forum. 2. If I were you, I would not have the kids take a complete break over math during summer. I have been told that doing competition math is similar to working out. If you don't do it for a while, you lose your skills and a level of fitness. As a matter of fact, serious mathletes seem to approach summer as the most opportune time to improve.
  13. Thank you everyone for sharing your experiences and suggestions, all of which I appreciate. Just to make one thing clear, I believe the 4.5 hr. class that my son and I have recently attended already provided my son more info than what the school will do. It was pretty comprehensive! I even learned some new things. Also, I am not too worried about "potential backlash" of opting out. My son's school puts huge emphasis on building a community and appreciating and promoting diversity. There are only 34 kids in 5th grade, and they are already pretty tight with one another. But, then, I could be wrong, and I do appreciate the heads-ups. I plan on emailing my son's advisor in the near future, trying to honestly and politely explain my concerns and see what options we may have.
  14. My 5th grade son goes to a private day school on the West Coast. He has been very happy with almost all aspects of his new school this year; however, I have come to learn that soon all 5th graders will be taught "puberty" material that are quite explicit and detailed beyond the comfort level of our family. We are a Christian family holding onto "abstinence until marriage" viewpoint.I am just wondering how other families might have handled a situation like this. If at all possible, I would like him to opt out of the class when they go over such material.My son and I recently attended a 4.5 hr "puberty" class held by a university hospital in our area, and I believe this class has provided sufficient factual information re human development, reproduction, etc for a preadolescent kid like my son.Would greatly appreciate hearing about your experience or suggestions that you may have. Thank you very much in advance!
  15. Forgot to add one more thing. RE your concern about proofs, I think writing problems that are part of online class can be a very valuable teaching tool for students. The AoPS staff take grading very seriously and provide very detailed yet encouraging and helpful comments, all of which I believe and hope will strengthen my son's proof-writing skills down the road. As a matter of fact, one parent strongly advised me to take online classes mainly for the writing problems.
  16. I asked almost the same question on accelerated learners forum as well as on artofproblemsolving.com forum several months ago. Just want to share our experience RE your 2nd question (self-teach vs. online class for intro to algebra book). After finishing prealgebra 1 on his own in summer of 2018, my son has been taking online classes (prealgebra II, intro to algebra a, and currently intro to counting and probability). So far I have observed or learned the following: 1. Beyond prealgebra, it gets harder. My son is having to work very hard in intro to counting and probability, esp. on alcumus problems. Even Intro to Algebra a grew harder for my son in the 2nd half. I heard that intro to geo is the most challenging class out of the intro series. Esp. in intermediate classes, I have been told that online class can def. make it easier to learn the mat'l vs. self-teaching. 2. Mastery comes from solving a lot of "hard" problems. In intro to cp, my son has not had much problem understanding the theory or the concept, but when faced with hard problems on alcumus, he would get stuck very often and had to ask for help on many problems. However, I believe these struggles have helped him to learn the material deeply and develop intuitions. Therefore, although an imperfect measure, math competitions like AMC 8/10/12 can be a good test of how well a student has learned and mastered the material. 3. Although I believe online classes are worth the money, the costs can quickly add up. Even without sending your kids to a quality but expensive summer camp like Mathpath or AwesomeMath, you may be spending few thousands of dollars on aops classes alone, esp. if multiple siblings start taking online classes at the same time. Also, the price of online AoPS classes went up this year by $30 or so per class. Overall, I feel that your son is doing very well, and I feel that either online class or self-teaching can work out for him re intro to algebra book.
  17. @ above, may I ask how old your kid(s) are who have been using Brilliant.org? I have just purchased the annual membership and am trying to figure out a best way to use it for my two kids in 5th and 3rd grade. The older kid is now trying the amc course, which would be helpful for the upcoming amc 10 tests in Feb. Yes, my older son also mentioned to me that the problems are fun, creative, and logic-based. However, it seems that most of the content might be too hard for my 3rd grade son.
  18. I am wondering how school aged children could benefit from brilliant.org. I have two sons in grade 3 and 5, and am considering a lifetime subscription for them at $599.99. It seems that they have a variety of interesting math and science courses, which I think could help children esp for math when combined with aops mat’l. Anyone tried brilliant.org for their children... How did it go? What are pros and cons? Would a lifetime membership make sense? Thank you very much in advance for your response.
  19. Thx. everyone for your inputs, which do make me feel better about passing on this class. I have been feeling a bit guilty about spending much more on my older boy vs. my younger one. Also, the academy folks do a wonderful job of selling their class, and I do believe it is a high quality class. If money were not an issue, I would gladly sign up my son.
  20. Has anyone taken an AoPS academy class (as opposed to online class) for 4th or 5th grade math? What was your (or your child's) experience like? My 3rd grade son recently sat in a trial class at an AoPS academy in Bellevue, WA. He liked the class and found it more fun than the math circle that he currently attends or any of the online math programs that he has tried before including online beast academy. But, my hesitation is whether this class is worth the money ($520 every 12 weeks plus registration and other fees) since they seem to be covering just beast academy books in class. I believe AoPS classes from prealgebra and up might be worth the cost, but at 4th and 5th grade level, I feel like I could help my son at home, esp. since we already have online subscription to the beast academy and the books. But, I do think my son would enjoy the academy learning more than learning at home with me. What do you think? Do you think an AoPS academy class for even "basic" math like 4th and 5th grade would be worth the tuition? Financially we are already stretched to cover music lessons for two boys as well as online AoPS classes my older son is currently taking and will take in the future. Thank you very much in advance for your input.
  21. I posted the same question on collegeconfidential, and I got an answer on how EMF compares to AoPS (go to #10 post). Here is a link: https://talk.collegeconfidential.com/discussion/comment/21509462#Comment_21509462 Hope this is helpful to some of you.
  22. Hello, was just wondering if anyone has had experiences with EMF math courses (https://www.elementsofmathematics.com/). It seems that these courses are comparable to AoPS classes in rigor and depth, but different in that they are entirely self-study. Would love to hear your experience on EMF, esp. how it compares to AoPS classes. Thx. a ton in advance!
  23. Was just wondering if your kids are home schooled and how long it took them to do prealgebra book on their own. My son recently started his self-study of AoPs prealgebra book. He is nearly done with chapter two and it has been about two weeks. But, he is doing it in the mornings before his brick and mortar school starts. I am not sure how much time he will have as his school work will become more challenging in the future. I am still trying to decide if taking online or academy class will help my son to learn the material at a deeper level, therefore making the financial sacrifice worth while. In any case, it seems that my son would enjoy online and academy class more vs. self-study for the social aspect. But, with two kids doing music and other extracurricular stuff, our limited budget can go only so far. Thx. again for your response.
  24. Our family live in Seattle area as well; we were overjoyed to learn about the AOPS academy opening up in Bellevue. However, seeing that yearly tuition runs close to $1800 (in San Diego location) has dampened our excitement. At this point, due to this high cost, we are inclined to opt for online courses, which seem more reasonable at under $400 (w/o books) for classes (prealgebra 2 and intro to algebra) that our son would be interested. However, I like to hear from people who have taken AOPS academy classes. How was your (rather your children's) experience? Was it worth the price? I would particularly appreciate comparative pros and cons bet. AoPS online classes vs. AoPS academy classes. Thank you very much in advance.
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