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Everything posted by mohop

  1. My children love history, and I think a lot of this is due in part to SOTW.
  2. I think SOTW gives a good general overview of american history. We just complete our first 4-year cycle with my oldest (starting 5th grade), and the kids got companion books along the way and did some of their own reading as we went along that has given them a good U.S. history baseline. U.S. history is taught in 4th and 5th grade in my state, so we've decided that this year, I will start SOTW over again (ancients) with my rising 2nd grader and her 5th grade sister will listen to the read alouds but will have her own US history readings and will do her writing assignments/narrations based on that. I just ordered the condensed 4-part Joy Hakim History of US books online, and we will use those. So I guess to answer your question: my preference is to complete SOTW and then do a U.S. history focus after the cycle is over. But I like the feeling of "completing" things more than I like "switching things up," so that is what worked for us.
  3. Has anyone used the IEW themed writing books without having gone through the main Structure and Style writing program? I think I've decided to start my 5th grader in Writing with Skill, but I am really drawn to the IEW themed books, and we are going to try to add US history this year, so I think their US history book would fit in well. I'm okay with using it just to give us structured writing assignments related to US history, with the understanding that we may be missing out on pieces of what is intended by the program. Is this doable? Is IEW all or nothing? Should I just teach WWS and do WTM-style history narrations and call it a day (or school year)? This is my 6th year homeschooling but for some reason I'm more lost than ever when it comes to picking curricula this year. Starting the logic stage....
  4. Thanks everyone! The book being open and go is one of the reasons I am getting it, so I will make sure to get the TM.
  5. How important is it to have the instructor manual for Writing with Skill? I am thinking of starting my 5th grader with WWS this fall (this will be our first foray into the Complete Writer), but the sample lessons posted online just appear to show direct copies of the student text which contains already has the instructions for each lesson, so I'm wondering if I can get by just fine with only the student book. I don't mind paying for the extra book, but I operate better with the least amount of moving parts.
  6. It’s something new that will be starting in the fall. But my kids actually won’t be a part. I’m helping some friends new to homeschooling figure out what curricula they should use.
  7. I'm looking for recommendations for a curriculum for grades 4-8 that combines ELA instruction with social studies topics (either history or geography). This would potentially be used in a 4 day/week co-op for a group of kids ranging from 4th to 8th grades. The expectation is that each child can work fairly independently with an academic guide assisting, so it should be pretty easy to implement.
  8. ELTL doesn't really have a "spelling" component, other than dictation. So we add spelling. But my oldest is in fourth grade and has been using ELTL since 1st grade, and it works well for us. Simple, easy to implement. My second DD is going to need a little more hand holding to get through the diagramming when she gets to that point (she's first grade).
  9. We have been using D this year without a workbook. My DD just has a notebook that she does all her exercises and copywork in. I know the older grades are designed for use with a "commonplace book," so making the workbook is probably a low priority. We are still enjoying using ELTL.
  10. I used this for a co-op class for the kids to read at home before our class discussions/activities, and they all really liked it: https://www.amazon.com/Everything-Need-American-History-Notebook/dp/0761160833/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1519959158&sr=8-1&keywords=everything+you+need+to+ace+american+history My husband is currently reading this book as a read aloud to my kids: https://www.amazon.com/Little-History-United-States-Histories/dp/030022348X/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1519959237&sr=1-1&keywords=little+history+of+the+united+states
  11. If I have a younger child, am I better off just sticking with SOTW as the primary text and supplementing with additional stuff on specific topics for the older? I'd like to teach history for both kids together. I don't mind reading SOTW out loud to the younger and assigning the older one to read something independently, but I worry about using a different text that doesn't quite match up with SOTW.
  12. My oldest will be in 5th grade next year, and we will be restarting the history cycle with ancients. I will also have a 2nd grader with whom I plan on using SOTW vol. 1, which my oldest read in 1st grade. I would love to hear what everyone else has done/is doing/plans to do with their logic-stage history.
  13. If you wanted a 1-volume non-textbook, you could try Davidson's A Little History of the United States: https://www.amazon.com/Little-History-United-States-Histories/dp/030022348X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1518435968&sr=8-1&keywords=a+little+history+of+the+united+states It's a well-written book published by the same folks who published A Little History of the World. You may need to beef it up with some additional picture books on certain topics. We use it as a family read aloud at night and continue using SOTW for our main history spine during "school" time.
  14. Thanks for the helpful info! These books look fun. I wish I had done more stuff like this when I was a kid. I probably would have done better on the LSAT, which actually contains a section of problems similar to the mind benders.
  15. Do the Mind Benders workbooks correspond with grade level? So for a 5th grader, would I get workbook 5, even if she hasn't done any in the past?
  16. We used Phonetic Zoo for a couple of years and have started Spellwell this year. Phonetic Zoo is entirely independent (student listens to a CD of the spelling words being dictated everyday), and Spellwell is mostly independent, with the exception of the tests.
  17. I know it's not an insurmountable problem and is more of an annoyance than a serious issue. But geez...you'd think the teacher book would include the spelling words!! Plus, I rely on having some very open & go curricula to go along with some of the other things we do, because I work and have child care/homeschooling help. I think I'll end up writing or typing out the word lists myself, and I like the idea of going ahead and copying all the lessons at one time.
  18. I got Spellwell after seeing some recommendations for it on these boards, so I'm hoping someone can help me with this annoying issue. I got the teacher book (level C/CC) primarily because I wanted to have the list of spelling words with sentences prepared for the pretests and weekly tests....But I don't see that the teacher book has the word lists, let alone sample sentences to read during the tests. The only way I have of reading the words to my child (since the only place they are printed is in the book that she is writing in) is to take a picture of them and read them off the picture. I don't understand why the word lists aren't in the teacher book. What am I missing? What do you guys read from when dictating spelling tests?
  19. My 1st grader is a fairly advanced reader but barely writes, so one of our goals this year is to improve writing fluency. We are doing ELTL vol. 1, which focuses on literature, copy work, very basic grammar (like capitalization and punctuation), and oral narration. We are adding to that separate spelling and handwriting programs.
  20. With my DD who just turned 6 and is in KG, we do about one page a day. I don't push her though; if she's especially unenthused, we do less than a page. Since we start MM2 in KG (did the same with my older DD), we take it slowly at first and just try to finish before the end of 1st grade. By second grade, we try to get the text done in the course of the year.
  21. Phonetic Zoo is very independent, which is one of the things that drew me to it. I started my accelerated reader on it last year, when she was in 2nd grade, even though we had not done any spelling beforehand. I believe they have a spelling list on their website to see if your child is ready to start the program. We just took it very slowly the first year and had no expectations for her to complete each lesson within a set period of time.
  22. This looks like a good resource. I like the way it is outlined. How strong is the religious perspective? How do you think a non-Christian (monotheist) or non-religious person would take to it?
  23. Thanks for the great suggestion, everyone! I saw the 4-volume Hakim set that was created for K-12, and also saw that I can get super cheap used copies through Amazon, so I will probably get that for my own kids. I am looking into some of your other suggestions as I speak (type)!
  24. I am teaching a US history co-op class, and since we don't have enough class time to get through a lot, I wanted to pick historical topics to have the kids read about at home and then have discussion/activities in class. The kids are generally ages 10-11. I thought about using A Young People's History of the US (the Zinn adaptation), but it may be too heavy for these kids. But some of the other books I've seen are a bit too whitewashed for my liking. The Joy Hakim series looks good, but I can't really ask the kids to all buy multi-volume works for our 10 weeks of class. Anyone have a good one-volume US history resource to recommend? Or maybe there are some online resources I could use for the different topics? I just want them to come to class having done some background/contextual reading.
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