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Mrs. Tharp

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About Mrs. Tharp

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  1. Once I found it, R&S Math. My sons have very different learning styles, but it worked well for both of them.
  2. I like it. I cracked up over the directions at the top. I agree that he needs to add more, but I can see myself using this often.
  3. I'd consider using the Drama of American History series as a spine and cobbling together your own discussion questions and writing assignments. The series is outstanding, won't require too much reading, and is perfect for the age range you mention. Look up Build Your Library's 5th and 6th grade curricula for some wonderful suggestions for supplemental literature and videos.
  4. Me too. The boys both quit Scouts this year and I heaved a sigh of relief. Cooking over the campfire in our backyard is more my style.
  5. I cater to the needs of each child, because otherwise, the work isn't getting done! My oldest & youngest are also roughly the way you describe.
  6. Maybe we can do more in this area, but right now I make checklists of work & daily activities from Homeschool Planet and print them off each day. Both my sons will them over and oldest DS will check the boxes. We also have a paper calendar on the fridge with everyone's activities color coded. After years of OT and printing practice, oldest DS's handwriting is still illegible, so something electronic will work best, when he eventually moves towards being more proactive. Oldest ds also receives reminder emails from HSP and, I believe, could edit and add things himself if he wanted. It's extremely easy to use.
  7. You all are so good! I'm chiming in on this thread for the first time. I'm trying to stick with my regular routine-- weights 3x/week and walking the dogs 45 minutes/day for 6 days/week. We've been dealing with snowpacolypse here in WA but have only just now gotten back out to walk the local trails. Several large trees were blocking the way, ugh. I hope the Park Service is able to make it out here soon to do some clearing.
  8. I agree with fairfarmhand's definition. I think I am one as well. I am acutely aware of other people's emotions and it can take me days to shake off someone else's intense feelings. I tend to avoid intense/dramatic people whenever possible because I am so easily drained. I would change this about myself if I could.
  9. Since both our boys have done well with R&S math, and because MP uses it as part of their curriculum, we went with College of the Redwoods prealgebra (also offered by MP) with our oldest ds and were very happy with it. It was as straightforward and easy to teach from as R&S has been. I am planning to use it next year with younger ds as well.
  10. Prealgebra: MP College of the Redwoods Writing: Dictation, Killgallon Sentences, Wordsmith Apprentice Spelling: Finish Spelling Workout G, start grammar. Logic: Fallacy Detective, Logic Safari 3 Lit/History: BYL 7 Science: Chemistry, ACS and/or TOPS Band, Lego Robotics team, Track at ps.
  11. Just another couple of recommendations for curricula: Sharon Hensley's book Homeschooling Children With Special Needs might be helpful, and you may wish to check out the Simply Classical Curriculum at Memoria Press. The readiness assessments could be useful for you and Cheryl Swope, the author, formerly taught special education, has a child with ASD, and makes herself available for support on their forum. I'm afraid I'm not much help when it comes to developing language. I was lucky; ds spoke in echolalia at 3, but responded exceptionally quickly and well to 1-2 hours per week of speech therapy, and, as I have related, was ready to read at the same age as his NT peers. He never had the kind of pronounced narrative language difficulties PeterPan describes. We had a poor experience with ABA, and never pursued it further. The people I know who pursued it successfully for their kids have had exceptional financial resources and/or great insurance at their disposal. I second the idea of discussing your options with your dh with regards to accessing services. I live in a liberal state, but services for and access to special education is terrible. I've had friends move to Massachusetts and California to access better services, and if I could go back and do it over, we probably would have moved too. It's much easier to do that than it is to constantly fight for access to basic services elsewhere. Dh has also deliberately tried to select companies with decent benefits, with mixed success.
  12. Definitely get a second opinion. My son has always been social and he has always had ASD. I think you are wise not to limit yourself to classical materials. Use what works for you. Also, it was around first grade that I started to realize exactly how much ds struggled to pay attention. He could sit for about ten minutes at the very most. We started attention meds a year or so later and it helped quite a bit with both comprehension and retention. If he is doing well with Rod & Staff Math, why not keep using it, at whatever pace feels comfortable to you & him? My son with ASD thrived on the R&S approach (while floundering with other math curricula) and is currently completing Algebra I successfully this year, in ninth grade. I can confidently say he would not be where he is without the rock solid foundation he received from this curriculum. The structure and ongoing review was just what he needed and the program was very easy to teach from and adjust to his rate of learning. We have loved, loved, loved R&S Grammar as well. Those two programs have been our spines for years now. My son could not read at all after a year of whatever they were doing in ps kindergarten. I yanked him and for reading we used the Calvert curriculum reading program in first grade. He was reading at near grade level in two months. Although the rest of the program was a bust, their approach to reading was so successful for him I will always be grateful. They had phonics practice every day, and that was key for him. The other big help was the series of Houghton Mifflin readers starting with the book, Here We Go! I think there are four or five books in the series. They contained fun stories with featured sight words. So we would do phonics every day, read the stories in the readers, and set up a "word wall" to practice the sight words featured in the readers. Both my sons loved the HM books so much that we still own them and they are currently 15 and 12! I can't recommend buying an entire Calvert level just for reading, (though you can pick up the HM books used if you wish) but would advise a mix similar to this one. If you don't mind Bible stories, the R&S reading program would probably work very, very well. It also has the virtue of being inexpensive. Also: at that age I would also have classified my son as a visual learner who needed a lot of movement. When I bought curriculum tailored to that, it was a mistake. He needed predictable, structured lessons that could be lengthened or shortened as needed, with lots of review, far more than manipulatives or great illustrations, which were distracting and unnecessary for comprehension. My advice is to save the movement/sensory needs for play. Give him lots of fine & gross motor stuff to do and a trampoline, leave the visually distracting stuff until middle school or later. Aside: Sigh. We are neither conservative nor especially devout, so R&S upper level Reading, Social Studies, and Science aren't good fits for us, but their approach works so exceptionally well for my oldest (and pretty darn well for my younger ds too) that I start to wish we were every time I look over the Milestone Books website, lol. I can't do it though. If I could go back and reteach content at the elementary level, I would have used Core Knowledge materials, but I discovered those resources too late in the game for us.
  13. Yes, those are red flags. Ask around your local autism community, and try to find the most experienced evaluator you can. The closest Children's Hospital might also be a good source of referrals. Good luck!
  14. My oldest son's journey through math has also characterized by sloppy work and careless mistakes I also occasionally did not handle it well. What worked for us was to switch from mostly independent work to working out the problems one by one on a white board. It forced him to slow down and made it much harder for him to rush through the problems or try to guess at solutions. Since doing this, his math work has improved tremendously. We have been very happy with College of the Redwoods PreAlgebra and Prentice Hall Algebra as they are both easy to teach from--the lessons are in manageable chunks and don't require much prep. I've been very happy with the way concepts are presented as well.
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