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    Central PA
  1. I use foundation Year and really like it. I supplement a lot! I like the manual and it was perfect for me as this was my first year homeschooling and I felt I needed the manual as a guide. I bought the PDF version and I print each week lesson plan (about 2-3 pages). I get books from the library as needed or some of them we got from the library and decided we wanted to own so I bought them used or new. I am very happy that I bought the manual. I follow it for the most part but I do supplement with RS math and other language arts. I LOVE LOVE the nature study. That and the geography program are fantastic.
  2. We got this from the library and DD liked the DVDs. She can't read yet so the CD-rom was useless. I do not know if' it's worth the money for her age. We are now using the Learnables and liking it. We are listening to the cds. About once a week I sit down and she points at the words along with the cd. It seems to be a better match for her age. I like it too. I did take a couple semesters of college level Spanish but lost it due to lack of use.
  3. Go for it! We love AAS. We use the readers too! I can't say enough good about the program. My DD was 5 in late October and we are lesson 11.
  4. My daughter was interested in math and was the primary reason I decided to dabble in homeschooling. what I like is that she is learning things. I hear her counting to 300 and on a recent car trip she wanted to know what comes after 900 thousand, what come after 900 million, etc. We play the games and she enjoys them. Today's lesson 42. Ask her to recite even numbers, ask her to recite odd numbers, ask her what is 9 +1, 4+1 etc. Play "Go to the dump". (this game is like go fish but instead of matches you need to have 2 cards with a sum = to 10) This took less than 30 minutes but she loved the card game so much we played several hands. Cons This is not a work book type program. If your kid likes workbooks they will be disappointed. Lots of parts. If you are not organized you may need to get a system to keep all the manipulatives. HTH
  5. Congrats! We love ours. DD LOVES the games. Have fun.
  6. I forgot to mention that a friend of mine found a neat vintage 1950's table at a garage sale. She sawed off the legs to be child height. She picked up a mix of kids sized chairs at yard sales, etc. It is a great table for the kids. She got some risers for it so she can use it as an additional table around the holidays. Win win!
  7. I do lots of arts and crafts with my daughter. I get books from the library on crafts and artists. We may do 10 crafts a week or none. I find this book to be EXTREMLY helpful in exploring creativity: Doing Art Together by Muriel Silberstein-Storfer It is a book on the parent-child workshop that was taught at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. I have used it with young children and with elder adults. It is well written. Includes famous works of art and student examples. It gives helpful hints to help keep student paintings from going muddy. I encourage unabashed crafting. I am a bit more strict when it comes to drawing. I want her to enjoy herself but I want her to learn to draw (I believe it is as easy to learn to draw as it is to learn to read). So most of the time we are using books form the library to make a cats out of cotton balls but once a week we get serious and practice seeing and drawing. I like Betty Edwards, Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain for that. I tailor the concepts for a 5 year old. I also like The Natural Way to Draw Kimon Nicholaides. This book was not written to be taught to preschooler's but it's a great read on how to capture not only the form but also the essence of your subject...food for thought?
  8. I got DD the sansad children's table and chairs form Ikea. She loves it. Table was $49 and chairs $19 each. The table adjusts so I can raise it up as she grows and the chairs have storage. She loves the storage! I keep her markers, crayons, and craft supplies in the chair storage so she has access to them 24/7. It's so nice to have a place for her to go sit and make cards, etc. on her own without any help from me. We read on the couch or cuddled up in bed, do math on the floor, do science anywhere and everywhere but for writing and crafts I prefer her child sized table. She is an only child but when she has friends over they always ask to sit at the table and do crafts. I like letting them create without me hoovering over them and when they need a break I can say, " snack time" and feed them at the dinning table! I haven't regretted our table purchase for a minute.
  9. This website might be close to what you are looking for http://www.uni.edu/becker/Spanish3.html#vocabulary
  10. We just started the Learnables. It's a language immersion program. We started in book one. No writing required. You listen to the cds until you are familiar with the words then listen and look at the pictures. I am using livemocha to stay abreast while I learn with DD. I did not major in Spanish but did take 2 college level courses. I too lost it all for lack of use. She asks frequently, "What's the Spanish word for...?" I figure we should start now while she is interested. I like livemocha because you get feedback and it's free.
  11. Sounds about right! my daughter is on lesson 51 and she struggles a little sometimes and groans a lot! I got the AAR book that goes along with AAS an she can read those short stories. It boosts her confidence and has helped a ton. I like OPG but it is a little "dry". The stories are not as captivating for a new reader. She is learning a lot but I find it's best to help reinforce the concepts outside of OPG. she is not into ETC but easy readers are a bit too advanced. So happy I found the AAR books. They are pricey but worth it. So cute how sophisticated she feels reading to younger kids.
  12. Worth every penny. My daughter loves it and I got the AAR book too. Now she reads to me one story at bedtime with no groaning. I was doing OPGTR but when I added AAS I saw an immediate improvement and interest in reading. She writes often too. I believe it is directly related to AAS. I did not get the CD or the box to hold the cards. I took the cards with me to the container store and found one that works. I do not have a giant magnetic board either. I might get one at some point but now things work fine on the floor for my wiggle worm. She actually learns better if she can jump to reward herself. I cut corners when and where I can but this program was worth every penny. Put a $5 back every week until you have the payment. It is worth it.
  13. Hugs. My DD has not been diagnosed because our pediatrician says we can not have her evaluated until she is school age. Her birthday is in Oct so she will not start kindy until the fall. In the meantime, I have know since she was 18 months old that she was different than other children. Never slept, never still, constant activity and many many meltdowns. She went to preschool last year and I noticed a correlation between the days she went and the foods that were served. One example: cupcakes. For a 3 year old class there were often bright blue cupcakes or purple cupcakes and or brightly colored something. I found the Feingold diet this way. After the first 4 days my DD slept through the night! She had done that maybe 6 times in 4 years! She was more focused and didn't melt down if her sock got a wrinkle. It was amazing. We are now 100% Feingold family and could not be happier. She is reading, LOVES math and will entertain herself without running, jumping, disobeying, and she sleeps all night every night. No more night terrors. It has been a true miracle. I am not advocating for or against medicine. That is a choice only you and your family can make but I wanted to tell you about our success story and send you words of encouragement. Congrats on your new baby too.
  14. I baby sit a 7 month old 4 days a week. We do most stuff during nap times. Somethings we do with him around just give him toys and try to get DD to focus on a task or project if I need to do something with the baby. Most days go great and I use a baby carrier for field trips. The baby is a great source of fun on play dates.lol You can make it work because homeschooling is so flexible. If I get behind I will try to do an extra read aloud or say, "we are going to have a Topsy turvy day and do math after supper!" (When baby is gone). This usually works ok if I have a great bribe in order. It works good for me and then I have a little $$.
  15. I can not speak for Dynamic Literature But I BELIEVE AAS has improved my daughters grasp of the English language tenfold. She reads me a chapter from AAR every night. Amazing program! She enjoys playing with the letter tiles. It's been a wonderful experience for us.
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