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Everything posted by 8FillTheHeart

  1. I agree with @ScoutTN Unless you have a specific science textbook requirement, middle school is a great time to just let them explore a wide range of science topics of interest. She could read books on oceanography, meteorology, geology, marine life/insects/birds/horses/dogs, etc, husbandry, ecology, and the list goes on. There are innumerable science topics outside of traditional school textbooks.
  2. Naxos recordings are always excellent; Othello should be good.
  3. 50+ pages is way too much info. Look at Sebastian's post for appropriate length suggestions. In addition to those, I'd add a 1-1.5 pages long counselor letter, but I can't imagine anything more than 15-19 pages total.
  4. My dd used it. She put links to Russian recitations, images of awards, a Russian translation project, and some essays written in French. I don't know how many viewed but at least 1 mentioned her Russian recitation when she was there for a scholarship weekend.
  5. Dd and I finally talked about next yr. These are our tentative plans: Cal (Thinkwell) Macro and micro (Thinkwell) Last 1/3 of world history ( been doing 1/3 per year the past 2 yrs) Finishing German 3 and German 4 A homebrewed ecology course Haven't decided on lit, yet. But just having decided on the others is a step forward.
  6. The Mysterious Benedict Society series that the OP's dd loves.
  7. You could also try to see if she would be interested in learning some of the science and history in the MBS books. Things like how do radio waves produce sound; why does lemon juice change color when heated; how do steam engines work on ships; the geography/culture of (Netherlands? Denmark? Can't remember exactly where they went in book 2), history of falconry, etc. Maybe learning what Kate, Renie, Sticky, and Constance know would be a fun diversion approach school work.
  8. I am perplexed by what you want. Geometry texts include the drawings for problems that need the figure for solving. I have used an older ed of the MUS geo text with all of my kids (including 3 dyslexics) and never once have had to draw a visual that wasn't included in the book. MUS's geometry is about the most straightforward geometry text you are going to find. Probably true of their algebra, as well. I have never seen any of their other texts, but those 2 are simple and straight forward. We also use Geometry by Alexander and Koeberlein but I would not recommend it for a student who is struggling with algebra.
  9. I wonder if it is also the shift to co-ops and outsourced teachers vs teaching at home. Small individual unit studies are probably not co-op friendly. (I am having a difficult time understanding local trends. There is a co-op here that uses TT for math. That is doubly out of my world of understanding. 😉 )
  10. What about using a spiral program for review coupled with MM's themed books for mastery?
  11. Are you OK with just basic geometry vs heavy proof geometry? MUS's geometry would definitely work for a student with LDs. It has lots of white space without any overwhelming text in the student text. It is definitely on the light side, though. For a student with LDs and no goals to pursue STEM, it would be an OK choice. (as would their algebra texts).
  12. Well, I am sure glad I didn't pursue them as an option when Educents shut down. I wonder what they see as the trend?
  13. I've graduated multiple kids who have successful careers, attend a top grad program (not only in the country, but internationally), are one of 20 student recipients of top competitive university scholarships and my siblings still don't approve and are incredibly offensive about our choices. I have put up with their snark and nasty comments for 25 yrs. If they had their way, homeschooling would be outlawed.
  14. I would make summer a long, relaxed break. In order to get excited about next school yr, I would let her choose subjects she wants to study and make it fun, light, and interest-driven. She is about the same age as my 3rd grader. To give an idea of what I am contemplating for 4th---a yr designed around the Chronicles of Narnia. If we go that route, we'll read the series and study British history and WW2 (and whatever rabbit trails that come up along the way......)Science will be whatever books that chooses (right now she is into bugs, so we are reading (she loves this book.) Writing can be whatever you want it to be. It doesn't have to be a curriculum. It can be fiction writing or whatever she enjoys.
  15. My kids have asked Jr yr. in terms of how many, 2 teacher recommendations seems pretty standard. If your ds has other outside teachers, you might want to get 1 more academic LOR in addition to the English teacher, making 2 academic and 1 community leader.
  16. For math, you could just try changing things up in a simple enough way that it might make it more fun. For long division, working out a problem on a dry erase board with different colored markers or on graph paper with colored pens might help. Some people do that for kids who are struggling with what they are doing. I sometime let my Dd do that bc she is artsy and she thinks it fun. She doodles faces in her numbers, too. I don't care as long as the math is correct. 😋 colored pencils in the math book would be another option. Be silly and tell them to start at the end of the lesson and do the lesson backward toward the beginning. Photocopy the lesson and have a race (you have to do 2 problems for their every 1). Close the math book and play math games instead. Play math war with a deck of cards. Each of you flip up 2 cards instead of 1. Use the cards for addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, fractions......whatever you want. They have to tell you the answer and the highest value wins the card. Play 24 (my kids love 24). Sometimes just doing something different for a day or 2 makes going back to routine easier or at least more palatable. The simplest thing I have done that makes our days go better is be 100% present. Sitting beside them while they work and asking them questions to keep them on task makes them be able to focus and just get things done. So for the long division problems, it might be as simple as, "ok, so what do you do next? Ok, what is that answer? Now what?" Etc. If I ask them if I sit there with them, can they do all the problems in 10 mins (or whatever) usually they can. Sometimes making them sit there and endure it for hrs by themself might be the answer (if it is a roiling huge temper tantrum and their attitude is belligerence vs anything else), but that would be my last preference. I don't want math to be the battle or the issue when the real issue is an underlying behavior. I try to remember they are just little people and sometimes they just need encouragement when their behaviors are actually out of line with what is expected. I do have 1 child who is lazy to the core. She would complain about anything that took effort. With her, giving her more work was the best solution bc by having more work, it made her complain less when she realized how easy it had been. But, she is the only one I ever took that approach with. (And this is a personality issue she still struggles with. She is my Jr and the only college she wants to apply to is the one she can commute to. The path of least resistance is her constant go-to.)
  17. You are fairly new to the forums. Curricula definitely goes through "fan" waves on here. BA has been out for several yrs and it rode on the "AoPS is superior to everything else out there" wave. I don't think I am overexaggerating one iota. 😉 Trust me. I got sucked up in the AoPS bandwagon there for a while bc it was perfect for my ds. But, my dd who is every bit as gifted as ds taught me a thing or two and put me in my place. Fwiw, I don't believe all math curricula are equal by any stretch (especially those targeted to the homeschool vs school market), but I do believe that thorough and solid standard math texts do provide students the necessary skills to master math concepts and build a solid foundation.
  18. Why does having to report progress mean you can't skip the first 20 or so lessons? Can't they just skip them and when they finish a text, move into the next level? Or skip them and have them do Abeka 4 days/wk and have 1 day/wk be a supplemental math program? Demonstrating progression does not mean 1 lesson per day starting with lesson 1 and completing every lesson in a text. FWIW, my highest level of math way back when we calculus. My kids are like their engineering dad and are much better math students than I ever was, but we have managed to muddle through quite successfully. 🙂 I At one pt , long, long ago, I used to own all of SM. I bought it way back when my oldest was in 6th grade. After working through only Horizons, the only material he couldn't solve immediately were rate/flow problems and that is only b/c he had never learned r*t=d. He approached everything algebraically, not bar diagrams. (SM was really only beginning to be available at that point. I had been told that I needed to see this new math program that was available b/c it was superior to anything else available. Sort of like the BA of today. 😉 ) Over the yrs, I have sat with all of my kids while doing their math. I think the entire conceptual/algorithm debate is overblown. My personal POV is that word problems are best tools for ensuring kids understand what they are doing. It is why I like HOE. That plus HOE solves via an algebraic approach vs bar diagram (I much prefer solving that way.) Learning math via Horizons/algebraic-thinking has not hampered my kids at all. So, if you are more comfortable teaching math from a certain direction, you do not have to abandon the approach you want to take. If you want to switch, then go for it. But, this is one of those topics that can drive you crazy if you let other people undermine your confidence in what you are using to teach your kids.
  19. Not sure why that is a problem. I don't use Abeka, but Horizons is very similar. We don't yr round school (we spend 11 weeks doing absolutely no schools whatsoever in the summer---3 weeks left in this school yr and I am counting down. I am so, so ready for vacation!!!), but I have had kids complete more than a yr's worth of math in a single yr and therefore start the next yr's text right after finishing a complete level. With Horizons, the first few weeks worth of lessons are similar with very simple (even including single digit addition in the 5th grade text) and complete review. With Abeka, you could opt not to have them do them, make a game of it and set a timer and have them race and see just how many pages they can do in x minutes, let them revel in having days of super easy math, or plan ahead and use those days of easy math as days for tackling something harder in a different subject. it helps to remember that curriculum is simply a tool. You control what you do with it. It does not need to define what you do.
  20. Abeka is a solid elementary math program. (Their high school math, otoh, I would not recommend.) If you want to supplement your dd's math w/o changing programs, I recommend the HOE Verbal Problem Book. With your ds, you could supplement, test him to a different level, or just let him race through what he is doing until supplementing with more advanced materials is simple. (My 3rd grader is half way through 5th grade math b/c she breezes through multiple pages of math per day in minutes. I have her do math for about 30 minutes per day plus about 2 HOE problems 4 days per week. Sh. She didn't like BA at all, but she was doing 3rd grade math when I bought BA 2. It was a complete waste of $$ bc it was way too easy, and she was so turned off that I didn't try BA3.)
  21. I would encourage you to think about what the definition of education encompasses. Is it opening textbooks and completing a set amt of book work? Or does education also cover what children see and experience in the real world outside of pages of information? Geography? Ecology? Human geography and cultures? Public schools have the mindset that only teachers provide an education and that it requires sitting in a classroom and learning through a book for a set amt of time/day/yr. I absolutely positively LOVE the 2nd chpt of Hard Times as a motivation for homeschooling. It was written by Dickens over a century and a half ago, but he sums up exactly how our culture defines education with scantron tests defining the best and brightest. in simple terms, Gradgrind is a teacher who is focused on book memorization that misses real understanding and knowledge. Books do convey information, but is it the same as "knowing"? Blitzer or Sissy? I'd rather have Sissy's knowledge of a horse.
  22. No. She does not do the note taking guides. We have zero contact with DO at all. We pay $29/mo for access to the videos. We do it this way b/c the videos line up with the text and he does a good job teaching the concepts. It is easy to grade with the SM. I was wrong about the copyright date, though. I have had the book for a few yrs and didn't purchase a specific edition. But, when I looked, it is the 1996 edition, so it is over 20 yrs old! (but, I like the text and several of my kids have used it.)
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