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About daijobu

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  1. Thanks for writing this. Can you provide some examples in the AoPS textbooks (not the BA level) where they do an inadequate job of explaining difficult concepts?
  2. Thank you for raising this issue. I remember having a discussion about the lies we sometimes tell our children with Bernie Nebel and users of BFSU. For example, we often tell our students the lie that electrons rotate around the nucleus like planets in a solar system. Then one day, it's like Santa Claus, and now electrons occupy a probability distribution. I felt uncomfortable telling my students the lie of electron orbits versus orbitals, but some argued that orbitals are just too much for younger students. (I still don't really get it.) Do you have other examples of lies, in math or other subjects?
  3. Wow, I have no words for this, and after all the extra help you provided. Is this common? It also reminds me of teaching my kids python in middle school. They would type in their code, would not bother to even run it once, and then announce to me that they were done and it works perfectly. 🤔
  4. This resonated with me. I refuse to use the phrase "cross multiply" because I think that's an unnecessary level of abstraction, even with my students in calculus. I will always, always say, "we multiple both sides by 3" or something similar. It harkens back to first principles: do the same thing to both sides and equality still holds. When dividing fractions, I like to tell younger students, "Remember, our new definition of division is to multiply by the reciprocal." Or I'll ask them "What is our new definition of division?" I want students to be clear on what has been proved and what has been defined. Great topic!
  5. This really piqued my interest! Can you go into more detail here? Are these students middle class? What deficiencies do you see in their academic achievement?
  6. This is difficult to write since I can't cite official UC policy anywhere, but if you are keen to have your student enroll at UC, I wouldn't worry too much about satisfying every a-g. My dd was admitted to UC Berkeley and UCLA without hitting all the a-g's (thought we did get most of them). I've seen the transcript of another homeschooled student who was admitted to Berkeley who had a pretty sketchy way of satisfying English (basically he read a blog post every other week). I also hear anecdotally about students who are admitted to UCs who don't hit all the a-g's. We filed PSA, and when my dd completed her UC application, there was no way to indicate whether a course was a-g. It's like it doesn't really apply to PSA homeschoolers, though you'd never know from the UC website. I guess my point is to continue a broad high school education, and if you miss a subject area or two (or 3 or 4), apply anyway. Also check out the FB group for California homeschoolers applying to college. I wish they'd just get rid of that a-g stuff since it's pretty meaningless anyway.
  7. I''m so sorry. If a little humor helps, when I read the above, I had assumed it was your DH who was going to live with your cousin.
  8. I agree. Is the UC really planning to create their own entrance exam? I'm no libertarian by any means, but this looks like a sizable government overstep, especially at the state level. Reminds me a bit of the a-g fiasco that has California homeschoolers so confused. Running your own college entrance exam is a tough undertaking. I'm no fan of the College Board, but they do have a reasonable infrastructure in place to maintain some amount of exam integrity, along with a reasonable system for distributing test results to schools, and all that other administrative headache. While not perfect, and SAT subject tests and the AP exams were reasonable approximations of high school academic achievement. Earning a high score on an SAT biology exam is a reasonable way of proving you studied a bit of biology in high school. I am reminded of a conversation I had with the president of the MAA (name drop, lol). I congratulated him on how the AMC is very nearly a college entrance exam, and universally accepted as a proxy for mathematical achievement. He actually expressed his dismay at this turn of events, because AMC is so regarded, the MAA has accidentally entered into the college entrance exam business, the score reporting business, the business of ensuring academic integrity, etc. etc. It was all too much for an organization which supports undergraduate math majors, graduate students, publishes books and journals, and hosts conferences. If the MAA struggles, I wonder how the UCs will handle the business of college entrance exams? (And I'm relieved my own dd#2 won't need to endure this trial.)
  9. I see the flipside to this situation. My DH attended a small private school taught by teachers with advanced degrees in their subject area. A's were given out sparingly. I attended a big suburban public school, taught by people with education degrees. A's were easy in every subject except my math classes. I can count the books on my required reading list for 4 years on 1-2 hands. He's read pretty much every book in the Western Canon. My DH was admitted to Stanford, but the rest of his class...mostly a bunch of state schools or the military or no 4 year college at all. My high school senior class had students admitted to Stanford, Harvard, MIT, and a bunch of prestigious LACs. When later returned as an alumnus, his high school administration asked him what they could do better. He said: GRADE INFLATION.
  10. A homeschooling friend's daughter was admitted to Stanford, but she's put in a request to defer. A future IR major, she's planning to study a foreign language during her time off. Why pay full tuition only to study from home? I haven't heard if her request has be accepted. I was just hearing that many schools won't be giving out deferrals willy-nilly because of how it will upset admissions for freshmen entering in 2021 if they have to absorb all those would-be sophomores as freshmen.
  11. You can also google: < your favorite private or public school> School Profile Here are a few: Thomas Jefferson Lowell High School Stuyvesant
  12. My dd also did AoPS from PreAlgebra through PreCalculus. She switched to PAH AP Calculus BC because we feared she wouldn't have enough practice and preparation with just the AoPS book. The class was okay, and she got a 5, but she didn't love the class, being an AoPS kid. I am teaching another AoPS kid calculus now, using the AoPS textbook. In addition to the book, I have access to 3000 practice problems that the College Board makes available to calculus teachers. It's terrific because I can filter the problems by topic, so I can give my student 20-100 practice problems along with each corresponding AoPS lesson. I also have a bunch of old AP calculus exams dating back to 1998. So he'll get the fun proofs from AoPS, but also get enough practice to develop muscle memory and solve problems quickly. IMO the AoPS textbook alone isn't sufficient preparation for a 5. If your son is an AoPS kid then the BC level of calculus should be fine. People make a big deal out of calculus, but it really isn't all that hard. It's interesting and fun!
  13. Has your student already studied counting and probability or number theory? AP chemistry taught by Mr. Moskaluk at PAH is terrific for an auto-didact who wants access to a master teacher to explain concepts as needed.
  14. I agree with @RootAnn. I recall my dd learning something completely different in AP chemistry every single week. The material was challenging and every week had new material. Woe to the student who falls behind! It was her only AP that year, and really the only demanding class she had, but I wanted her to be successful taking her first "real" AP class.
  15. We had to submit work samples to our homeschooling charter school. Is that what you mean? But in elementary, those were really minimal: like a worksheet here and there. No tests, no notetaking. We used BFSU for science. Neither of my daughters did any notetaking or science exams in elementary or middle school. Their first experience with science tests was AP chemistry in 9th grade and it was fine. In place of exams, we did as BFSU described, with the students keeping a science notebook. At the end of each lesson I would ask them orally questions about that lesson. As they explained the concept I diagrammed it at the whiteboard, correcting anything they didn't get. Then they would copy the labeled diagrams into their notebooks. I would scan and submit pages from their notebook to the charter. As to whether they retained anything they learned in middle school, I would say basically no, except for LA and math. LA because they were writing and reading all the time, so the reminders are built in. Math because they participated in math contests every week, so they had a chance to use what they had learned even if it was years ago, so they never forgot what they learned. I think they retained bits of science and history, but not enough that it made a huge difference. I mean AP chemistry is really out there and beyond anything taught in middle school. Midway through middle school, we dropped the charter and filed PSA so we could have more freedom to learn as we pleased. You might want to consider doing the same if you can do without the money.
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