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Everything posted by domesticidyll

  1. This is my take -- I don't seem to be able to get the image upright. Heather
  2. Thanks for the book title! The schools that are asking for course descriptions will probably go by the course description, not the syllabus name, for rigor, and will be used to seeing a variety of names. "Advanced Topics in Algebra" seems the most clearly non-remedial -- even the merit schools on your list should recognize that undergrad math courses include advanced algebra work.
  3. I liked both of chiguirre's titles. Non-mathy people will look at the transcript and see something substantial-looking and recognize that it includes hard math, and mathy people will have a sense of the actual trajectory of your son's math learning. Could I ask for the name of the game development book?
  4. Performance is such a big component of theater! I would look through what you can see in person as you pick plays. Since you have a local group performing Raisin in the Sun, I might be inclined to spend more time on it rather than less, and see if the actors or director are doing any kind of extra community outreach, or might be willing to meet with a group of students for Q and A. It's also worth considering even what film versions are available. Much Ado isn't probably the best or most famous of Shakespeare's comedies, but there are three movie versions (Joss Whedon's, Kenneth Branagh's, and the stage version where David Tennant wears a Miss Piggy costume) that are so terrific and so different from each other that it's really rewarding to see all three. Hamlet and Romeo and Juliet also have a number of interesting options (sometimes also a scene or two from a not-so-good performance is also quite instructive!!!). Yes, very much recommend reading R and G alongside Hamlet (some adult material, but a kiddo who read Anna Karenina is likely fine!). I know you said she wants to do managing rather than acting, but it might be a good idea to make sure you have a few plays on your list that she could pull monologues from (characters of an age she can play, not too racy, etc.). Even if she doesn't use the monologue for an audition, the practice of prepping, memorizing, finding her beats, fine-tuning delivery, offers such good insight into understanding how the play is put together. John Barton's Playing Shakespeare (the book and even more the video series) is absolutely fantastic. So many terrific insights for the actor. Beautiful advice for instance on delivering monologues. Gosh, so many good options!
  5. For world history, we really enjoyed Ways of the World (text) and History of the Ancient World and Foundations of Western Civ.
  6. Would this also be a place where the counselor letter could (indirectly) address rigor? If you as counselor write that she selected courses from the most rigorous load available, or something of that sort, that lets the admissions office tick off their little "didn't take easy classes to coast" box. I know public school students occasionally have to choose between AP options sometimes to make their schedule work out; this feels very similar.
  7. I went through about the first six episodes with my two kids, another mom, and her two kids. We found the actual lessons ran quite a bit longer than the given time. There are one or two big exercises in each lesson (draw two pears, one with the stem toward you and one away; draw a cardboard box with flaps open; draw a still life of round bottles / vases / glasses), and we would pause for each one. I'd guess each lesson ran an hour or an hour and a half, not sure exactly, it's been a while. Then, there are homework assignments with each class.It would be easy to spend 2-3 hours a week at work with just the lessons, exercises, and homework. He also spends a bit of time looking at art to see how different artists use the technique, so a bit of time each week could be spend looking at art books to study technique. For what it's worth, the course recommends a lot of supplies. We did just fine with a drawing notebook (nice paper), a small set of drawing pencils, and an excellent eraser. Certainly for the first lesson or two to see if it is a good fit. We thought the course was excellent. Even my son, who does not like to draw and does not think he is good, produced some very good still life drawings. I am hoping to pick it up again sometime.
  8. DS took the intro courses out of sequence (after geometry when I think they are meant to come after intro Algebra A) and found them much easier than programming or algebra & geometry classes. I'm still calling them honors on the transcripts, though. I think writing formal proofs alone (for the online class) makes the class a tougher one than a standard ninth grade math elective class. The kind of thinking that it asks for, too, is deeper, even if the actual concepts don't go past algebra 1 math.
  9. I am wondering what people put on these. Are they meant to cover both what kids read for a class and fun reading? Right now, I am listing literature and nonfiction, but not texts. And I'm including some quirky/fun books but not every single series book. Am I on the right track here? Also--do colleges expect students to have something to say about everything on the list? I am pretty confident that DS will be able to discuss the Shakespeare he's read even a few years later. But for something like The History of Western Science, on the other hand, I doubt it--there are things he's reading now that I think he'll remember the ideas in but not be able years later to remember exactly which history of science stories came out of that book vs one of his texts vs in a documentary. Is this reasonable? Should I limit the list to things he remembers so well he can discuss them at length in an interview? Thanks!
  10. DS went back to do Intro NT and C&P after finishing geometry. He's finding them much easier, and would be able to do another math class alongside. (In comparison, he found it tricky to do Python and Intro Algebra at the same time, though that was also his first time writing up proofs.)
  11. I wanted to add a few more thoughts for Algebra A and B before intermediate algebra if not before geometry. My DS found the last few weeks of Algebra A to be the most challenging and most helpful of the whole intro algebra sequence. There were harder problems in algebra B, but they felt easier because of the deep understanding those last few weeks gave him. I have also found the placement tests to be too easy. At the moment, University of California considers intro A to be Algebra 1 and intro B to be Algebra 2 for their admissions purposes. (It is a bit confusing because intermediate algebra is also considered algebra 2, but it covers the material more deeply and other things also.) Intro geometry itself doesn't require a ton of Algebra, so a kiddo with some algebra 1 background could take that one fine, probably. I'd just worry about going into intermediate algebra without working through the intro algebra text.
  12. I loved little town. Especially for teens. My other favorites are little house and farmer boy. What about one of the newer verse novels for young adults? Fast reads, lots of white space in the page, but good stories and good language. Love that dog, or May B.
  13. Just to add, this is exactly our plan! Thanks for putting it so well ?
  14. CA only asks for a-g requirements from its in-state students, so out of state admissions are more flexible (still impressive achievement to get into UCSD, though!). We just pulled DS14 from his charter for this reason. To my surprise! I was really hoping to stick with the charter all the way through. In our case, I was willing to have DS test out of the a-g requirements (he was lucky enough to have AoPS geometry while it still counted), but the charter couldn't/wouldn't give appropriate credit for his courses. No credit for AoPS work done in summer, no honors credit for AoPS or Lukeion, no honors or even a-g credit for mom English classes. I was hesitant to have DS's official transcript not reflect the actual challenge and depth of his classes. And for schools that rely largely on weighted GPA, like Cal Poly, I was concerned that not having an appropriately weighted GPA would be very hard on admissions chances. I think he'll end up testing for most if not all a-g requirements, but we'll revisit that choice if it gets in the way of Why We Homeschool. (At the moment, it doesn't look too forbidding.) If the charter stipend is essential, I'd look into ways to keep up challenge while fulfilling what is needed. Local community college courses for math and science? The other advantage of dual enrollment, whether you end up applying as a freshman or transfer, is that the weighted GPA gets a boost. OR take the class of your choice with UC approved test? If you plan to test out, you don't actually need the charter to give you a-g credit--you can just take something that will satisfy the charter's high school graduation requirement, which is different from their a-g requirement and is generally much, much less difficult to get approved. This seems obvious, but I mention it because sometimes guidance counselors don't even consider not doing every single class as a-g. They tend to see a-g as synonymous with college prep, which of course it isn't, quite. (There's also the option of just submitting what you did, with syllabi and course descriptions, and tests for some subjects, and trusting that UC will see that it is a-g quality. Other posters on this board seem to have had quite a bit of success with that method. I think it is possibly easier to do this as an independent private school than as a charter school attendee, but I am not sure.) Lots of work-arounds, all of which are potentially better than watering down what you do to get a-g through the charter!
  15. DS found chapter 7 to be the most difficult. It helped him to make a diagram each of perpendicular bisectors, angle bisectors, medians, and altitudes, one per page, with a list of Things I Know about each concept. He referred back to these through the course when he got stuck. Beyond that, he kept a mental checklist of Things We Have Proved That I Can Use, but the chapter seven stuff was the most useful. It helped also to be pretty comfortable with LaTex and Asymptote--your mileage may vary with a less drawing-averse child. It was really helpful to plan work at a pace that allowed for asking questions on the forum and waiting for a reply--it was really helpful to be able to get a suggestion for where to look next (try looking for Pythagorean triples! try adding a line segment somewhere!) but there was often a day's delay on getting an answer, which made last-minute writing-problem-writing stressful at times. For us, three hard things at one time is manageable, but it is helpful if one of them can be a bit flexible in terms of due dates. DS was able to manage Geometry and Latin with outside vendors because Mom English, which is pretty rigorous, had wiggle room with due dates. Perhaps world history reading could be started over the summer? I think the amount of time needed for a foreign language varies quite a bit by kid. Russian is harder, but goes more slowly, so for some kids that may balance out. If you can schedule Geometry to finish by April, it might be nice to have that off DD's plate when AP testing begins.
  16. DS found the AoPS series really helpful. He had a grader early on who said, "What's your goal? What's your strategy?" Answering those questions, along with setting out givens, has been a very useful default starting point.
  17. I have a rising ninth grader, and am wondering how useful it would be, admissions wise, to designate a few of his classes as honors. Do non UC schools value this designation in ninth? (We use a charter, so I can't designate anything retroactively. And I'm pretty set on what he actually taking, the question is just whether to try to persuade the charter to label honors level.) The classes I'm fairly confident are honors level are aops, lukeion Latin, and a fairly rigorous mom English. Possibly history if we use the AP version of his world history text. Thanks!
  18. I use Pinterest for any kind of link. Poems, essays, craft projects, gorgeous photos, xkcd comics, books from Amazon, anything I will want to use in a letter class. Quite often, the pin image is just the words on the site, it's not visually stunning, but it keeps everything in a searchable home. For English, I have a board per era, plus a general English, plus a board on teaching writing.
  19. Ruth, did the transcript include comments from the teachers, like a recommendation? Or was it purely a transcript with dates and grades?
  20. I called UC admissions recently to ask about a-g math (DS was thinking about a summer aops class, and the charter could not give him a-g credit for it), two separate people told me it was fine: UC is used to getting information from multiple providers from homeschoolers, they read every word, they won't be fazed by it. I'm still not sure what to think about how much it matters to fulfill every inch of a-g. But the exchanges, and a quick look at the pull down menu, did leave me feeling very confident about it being ok to use the pull down menu even for non a-g classes (like lukeion Latin) and supplement with a course description.
  21. Another vote for when McHenry's excavating English. Old exam questions from the linguistics Olympiad.
  22. Shepherd's software (online website) is very good for mastering country and capital names and locations. DS and I went through all of the continents before the last Olympics, and it was very satisfying to watch the opening parade and know where every single country was located. Something like that would be good prep before going into a serious geography class.
  23. The Story of Western Science web page has links to some original science writing. There isn't a lot of twentieth century stuff (because of copyright, I assume). We really enjoyed the Darwin selections.
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