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About jboo

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    Hive Mind Larvae

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  1. The local schools are terrible, coasting off high SES parents and an abundance of tutoring centers. I wish we could home school but my partner refuses, so we afterschool. Singapore Math a couple days a week, handwriting one or two days a week, and then lots of reading around bedtime, especially when they're first learning. I ensure a steady feed of history and "quality" children's lit showing up on our bookshelves, and do my best to interest them in it.
  2. I came here to say what ElizabethB did about the McGuffey's - I follow the exactly the same approach with my son. The physical books are quite inexpensive - the series is long out of copyright and has been reasonably popular for over a hundred years, so buying a used copy is likely cheaper than printing them out if you decide to go that route. I've heard good things about Michael Clay Thompson's vocabulary series - Building Language (grades 3-4), Caesar's English I, and Caesar's English II, but I can't speak to it from experience yet.
  3. The links for "these pencils" and "this book" didn't come through. Could you re-post them, please?
  4. If you sell or donate them, write down their names. When I was low on shelf space many years ago, I did a major purge, and I wish I knew what some of those books might have been.
  5. I know it's not what you asked... but one thing I have seen suggested for children with letter formation problems is to switch to cursive, one of the principal advantages being the kid doesn't have to unlearn their old, bad way of doing things. My second grader is working with an OT on his manuscript handwriting right now. She was very helpful in the initial diagnosis - similar to PeterPan's kid, a large portion of his issues were related to his lack of physical strength and endurance. Remediation for these issues has helped improve his writing a lot, even though his baseline skills are still terrible. Need to spend more time with him (sigh).
  6. The only suggestion I have is that you document which books you donate -- I used not to do this and now I wish I knew what some of those books were. The tax system now strongly urges this anyway.
  7. Not sure how unusual you're son's behavior is, per the crowd. But it also might be worth trying a sport like baseball, which pretty much forces participation and has a bit more coach direction. "Bob! Pick up the ball and throw it to 1st base!"
  8. Hits: Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons. Rough going at the start, but DD5 has really cottoned on to it. All you people who get your children through in 15 minutes have my respect, though - takes waaaay more time for us. - DS7 enjoys this greatly. I think it's helping, and it's nice to have something for which I can just plonk him in front. Misses: Pentime. I admire it, and wish it was working, but I think (among other things) I need a teacher's manual for me and a *lot* more practice pages for the kids.
  9. I'm an afterschooler, so my plans are likely to be overtaken by events. SOTW 1: We read alternating paragraphs at bedtime. Kills three birds with one stone: history for him, history for his younger sister, and helps me work explicitly on his reading. Pentime 1B: Handwriting. Will either progress to 2 or circle back to 1A. He's so very, very bad at this. Singapore Math 2A/B, also Xtramath. I set up an account for him on a mac that autolocks after 30 minutes; if he's been good he can do a set of xtramath practices and then watch a video or play an allegedly educational game. He'll be playing baseball and swimming fall and spring. Thinking about piano, which will help with his sorely lacking manual dexterity. Seems like his days are already going to be pretty full, though.
  10. There's a recent article on Melatonin at Slate Star Codex here: Among other useful information, the pseudonymous psychiatrist writing under the guise of Scott Alexander cites quite a few studies suggesting that the most effective dose is only .3 mg, as well as suggesting that timing matters as well.
  11. Saxon used to be the standard suggestion for someone for whom Singapore was a bit much. What do you want out of the program? More or easier practice in order to speed her up? A program that explicitly proceeds more slowly? Not sure I'm reading it correctly, but her scores are great outside of computation. Maybe just supplement that? I've heard Kumon centers use timed trials to boost computational speed.
  12. There are a lot of train things in the Amish area near Lancaster. Despite not being more into trains than the usual family with small boys, we've stayed at the Red Caboose Motel -- the rooms are made of converted railcars -- and had a grand time. It's right next to the Toy Train Museum and very close to the Strasburg Railroad (a steam train), and the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania. There's a buggy company that runs tours from the Red Caboose Motel, too. Also in the Lancaster area: pretzel factory tours. The Turkey Hill Experience was fun. That's in Columbia PA, and probably on your way to one location or another. Tickets were ~$10 and it came with all you can eat ice cream - very fresh, very good. I don't think we needed to stop for dinner that day.
  13. Learn Old English with Leofwin by Mark Love. - This looks exactly like what I need. Thank you! l
  14. That is quite interesting! King James is too newfangled to meet my query, but I may wind up ordering that for other purposes. DS is looking for something about the language of the Anglo-Saxons.
  15. My son, a first grader with extremely high verbal skills, has decided that he's really interested in Old English. It seems unlikely, but does anyone have suggestions for books on the subject written for the elementary school set?
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