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About HappyDoopy

  • Birthday 07/04/1974

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  1. Wow! These are so great! Super encouraging and helpful, thanks! Keep 'em coming! :)
  2. Hi all, We have one more year before my oldest starts high school (we plan to continue homeschooling). My other kids aren't far behind, so I feel like we have this one last year before things start to really "count" in terms of transcripts and staying on topic (not rabbit-trailing) and less pressure, etc ... I'd love to hear from some parents of high schoolers: What are you glad you/your student did before high school? What do you wish you had done that you didn't? What did you spend more time and energy and money on that you realize now wasn't really important? Any books/curriculum/focus you're particularly grateful for? Any other wisdom from veterans would be appreciated! Thank you in advance!!
  3. I'm teaching WWS2 to a group of 8th graders this year, and we want to take a little break & focus on some creative writing. We plan to continue in WWS2, just need a change of scenery for awhile. Ideally, I'd like something: I can pick up and teach (not a lot of prep on my part) we can do for a week or two here-and-there; and with a grading Rubric Admittedly, I may be asking too much :) Do any of you know of anything that might fit the bill, or come close? TIA!
  4. Well, as usual, ya'll have been a wealth of information and encouragement. Thank you! I think we will go ahead and test through the R&S 6 chapters, find out where she is exactly, and go from there. I think I said earlier that I really do appreciate how thorough the curriculum is. Perhaps after this we'll check out AG, but for now we'll give book 6 a go. :) I also recently noticed that TWTM Academy has at least two grammar courses (Beginning and Advanced), along with a quick placement test (https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B6peV77xQYK_bnlLUURnUjIzcW8/view). I may check that out as well, possibly for next year. I imagine TWTMA courses cover most of what she will need!! Thanks again!
  5. This year my older two girls, ages 11 & 13, started R&S English 8 & 6, respectively. This is our first year with R&S. We finished FLL4 a couple of years ago, and haven't done a lot with grammar since then. Well, we realized very quickly that R&S 8 was way over the 13 yo's head (and mine too! ack!). She's now in grammar-limbo (having stopped R&S in Oct/Nov). My 11 yo is appropriately challenged in R&S 6. I'm concerned/curious now for a couple of reasons: 1. Grammar has always been a very easy subject for my girls. The struggle in R&S 8 felt like a big blow to my 13 yo ~ since there are so many other "really difficult" things about being 13, having a subject that's always been a "win" turn into a "fail" just kinda stinks. In large part, it's my fault - I should've done more homework, to see that R&S would be so different/difficult {poor first-born guinea pig!} 2. While I appreciate how in-depth and thorough R&S is, I wonder if it's a little overkill? Book 6 is challenging, but reasonably so. I haven't looked at book 7 yet. Book 8 felt altogether over-the-top. Even my husband - who has a PhD and teaches at a private university - didn't understand much past the first few chapters. Is learning grammar THAT in-depth really necessary? Am I so old that I can't remember ever having done grammar in such depth? Or is it not really as crazy-advanced as I feel like it is, and it's really perfectly reasonable and normal expectations for middle school? And if so, what grammar are they doing in (gasp) high school?? Clearly (I see now) it's a curriculum where you can't just jump into a higher level without having progressed through the lower levels first. But it still feels like a lot more grammar than necessary at this level. Thoughts? 3. At this point, do you think I should have the 13 yo start in book 6, and maybe skip/progress quickly through the parts she already knows well? Or should we just throw in the R&S towel for her, and pick up something else altogether? (& if so, what?) 4. I have two more kids in the wings ... I'm determined to get everything right with them (haha, I wish!). To avoid repeating this scenario in a few years, is it best to begin R&S directly after FLL4? And if so, what R&S level? 5? 6? Depends of what age/grade level they are at that point? TIA!
  6. Ahhh! I'm so late to the party! Can anyone recommend specific sessions that just really should not be missed? I'm sure they're all really wonderful ...
  7. Thanks, Moms. Setting the timer is sometimes helpful ... I just need to come up with some good incentives that will be motivating to her, yet not crazy-making to me :) OneStepAtATime, I really like your idea. She loves all things crafty ... maybe she & I can pick a specific hobby to target for awhile & really delve into it (history, biographies, etc). Thanks! Also, that could potentially fit into your idea, mom2bee ~ there's sure to be some tangible incentives there ... !
  8. Gah! So I know that a lot of it is "natural" for her age, but ... My 12 year old daughter is very bright, and most things come very naturally and easily to her. Most of her learning up til now has happened mainly through reading a TON of books. As she's gotten older, though, and exposed to more "exciting" books (Percy Jackson, Harry Potter), the books I give her tend to lose her interest. It seems that pretty much anything I suggest (books & otherwise) is immediately pooh-poohed. Of course I'm still "making" her read other books (we use a lot of the Sonlight recommendations), but the constant battle is exhausting. She isn't disrespectful or having a bad attitude (thankfully!), but there's still a lot of resistance when it comes to "school." Perhaps a separate subject (but connected??) ~ she also can take All. Day. Long. to finish her math. If there's an incentive (someplace she wants to go, or a friend coming over, for example), she is able to finish in a reasonable timeframe. Otherwise, she could literally whittle the day away staring at the page, then getting distracted, or crying over the difficulties of math, ... you get the idea - anything but math. Anyone been here before? Any ideas?? I have four other kiddos (ages 10, 8 & 7), so she just can't have my undivided attention all day long (nor do I suppose that would be the best thing for her, anyway). Help! And ThAnK yOu!!!
  9. Thanks for the input. Red Squirrel, I think you raise several good points. She really isn't lazy, she's just very clever and bright :) I think your point about possibly needing a greater academic challenge may be close to home ... and I'm just not really sure how to go about it, and maintain my sanity! (truth be told, maybe I'm the lazy one ~ or just feeling very stretched, having the other kids ... I'm sure there's got to be a board/conversation thread here about that?!) Thanks for the other suggestions as well ~ I have a few other things I can add to her schedule (including art, which she loves). The Creative Writer program through Peace Hill Press looks intriguing as well. Her writing could be beefed up some. Admittedly, I've not pushed her much, as it's been easier on me to keep her and my 9yo together in most subjects, but over the last 6-8 months or so there has been a marked growth and change in her in a number of ways. I guess that's what happens, huh?! Thanks again, sarah
  10. So my oldest child (a girl ~ turning 11 in 2 weeks) doesn't fit the typical First Born stereotypes. (My second child,9 yo girl, however, does. sigh!) We're using Sonlight Core E this year & loving it, but I'm challenged. Oldest (Z) reads very quickly and rushes through her work. Second child (A) reads more slowly and this core is an overall good pace for her. I also have two youngers (K and 1st graders), so my one-on-one time is a little limited. Oldest needs some more work. We haven't added Latin yet ... is there a program that's pretty independent that she could start in on? Any other ideas? I'm wanting to create more work (that's meaningful, not just busy work) for HER, not for me. :) Thanks, folks. I'm only here on rare occasion, but am always so grateful for the wisdom and insight your perspectives and experiences lend.
  11. Thank you, thank you, Luann! I appreciated all you said. I'm pm'ing you now ... And thanks again, moms. Your truth-speaking and ideas and experience are greatly helpful. Many of you are AHH-mazing, too ... I wish I could be a fly on your wall for a few days, and have some of your energy. whew. grace.
  12. So grateful for this true reminder ~ thank you!!! It's the whole reason we started homeschooling in the first place ...
  13. Have you tried the Artisian Bread in 5 minutes a day? It seriously is ahh-mazing! I use it to make pizza crust, cinnamon rolls, bread ... truly, the biggest pain in the process is having to clean the container and the stir-er thing (danish dough hook?). Oh, and having to wait 2 hours for it to rise. But that's simple to remedy: just always have some in your fridge, ready to go! ;)
  14. Thanks, oh seasoned ones :) . I so appreciate the encouragement and the suggestions! It's helpful to know that our house is pretty "normal" (ha!!) ... Perhaps one of my greatest obstacles is in my own head and heart ~ I need to slow down and be fully awake and alive in the moment and realize how quickly these years are f l y i n g by ... ack!! grace, sarah
  15. Help! I've got 4 kids ~ they're in 4th, 3rd, K & pre-K, so I naturally divide them into two groups for schooling. This year, more than ever, I feel like I'm constantly rushing from child to child to child to child and back again, helping with an assignment or making sure letters are formed properly, answering questions and doling out the next bit of work ... and then there's the inevitable interruptions, like this morning when my neighbor's crazy friendly dog came bounding into our driveway (where I was doing a reading lesson in chalk), so the next 15 minutes were lost. I think I've failed at instilling a good work ethic in my older kids too, because it seems that unless I'm hovering over them, they'll quickly finish one assignment and then run off to read or play ... and it's frustrating to have to call them back so many times a day... Is this just the way it is, schooling multiple kids? It feels like it's all I can do to get through Language Arts and Math with everyone everyday (if even that!!). And that's not the really fun, this-is-why-I'm-homeschooling- stuff. Anyone with many kids have any advice?? I really feel exhausted and on edge and not fully present because I'm having to shift gears in my brain so frequently that I can't keep up! I know I tend to have (absurdly) high expectations of myself ... Thanks in advance, seasoned mommas! sarah
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