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Monica_in_Switzerland last won the day on March 31 2014

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About Monica_in_Switzerland

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  1. Coming back with more thoughts... Minimalism is also a spectrum. Minimalist for a person with a hobby of photoshop is going to look different than minimalism for a person whose hobby is mixed media artwork. Similarly, minimalism looks different in Southern CA than in Minnesota for clothing stocks, different for a farm family than city dwellers... And even within any one category, minimalism can be a spectrum. I used to think I wanted minimalism, but it isn't true. I want uncluttered. And there is a difference, but the two are cousins and can share tips and tricks, IYKWIM.
  2. @Lori D. @forty-two If either of you would just take a glance at this... this was a history test from last week- short responses to some questions I wrote on the whiteboard. I am happy with the contents. I can see one main issue is that I did not ask him to proof-read after completion, and he definitely is not ready to proof-read spontaneously of his own volition- he needs the reminder. I believe he would have caught most of the proper nouns that he did not capitalize the first time around. Although I am tearing my hair out looking at them, they are not my main concern. If you can look at the actual spelling errors here, and give me any insight... I'd appreciate it. There are a few bizarre turns of phrase as well, I generally talk those out with the kids and chalk it up to the two first languages "problem".
  3. @forty-two Thank you for this info! I had never heard of the spelling through morphographs program, I will give it a look. Things about ds: - excellent reader - excellent auditory memory- can quote audiobooks very accurately, days or weeks later. - does not appear to have any visual-spatial issues. He is my main navigator and is basically a homing pigeon, he is building an RC airplane with no help, he can draw well from book or video tutorials... WHY CAN'T HE SPELL??? 😩
  4. @Lori D. Thank you for the explanation and great resource list. I have not yet put my finger on the problem. He also spells terribly in French, but his German spelling (almost perfectly phonetic) is good. It might be a question of bilingual kids developing some skills late, but I feel like I've give the "wait it out" approach long enough and need to really address his English spelling. We've been working hard at French spelling (not that it helps much...).
  5. Have you used the manual without the workbooks? Do the workbooks lend themselves to acceleration? AND/OR Any other remedial spelling programs out there that ACTUALLY PRODUCE RESULTS? My son still can't spell. At all. It is certainly better than it was in, say, 4th grade, but it is not seventh grade level by a long shot. No LDs of any kind, very advanced across the board including composition, just can't spell!!!!!!!
  6. This isn't quite science experiments, but it's related. Google Instant Challenges and look at some of what you find there. Here is one possible link to get you started: We much prefer the task-based challenges, and they are also the most closely related to engineering/experimentation. My kids LOVE LOVE LOVE to do instant challenges, and every single kid/family/group we have done them with begs me constantly to do another Instant Challenge day. Again, this is not exactly what you asked for. But they are so much fun, though better in a group than solo.
  7. @Gil Is this (as per your comment in the 7th or 8th grade thread), is this your boys' autodidact class that they chose for themselves? Just curious. Congrats on the great Japanese progress! If you enjoy fiction, you might like the book The Last Samurai by Helen Dewitt. It has nothing to do with samurai (except tangentially), but it reminds me a bit of your learning journey with your boys.
  8. OP, thanks for getting me hooked on a new youtube channel. LOL
  9. Just wanted to say good job, ladies! I've done nothing for two weeks 😂 but have made MAJOR homeschooling progress. Sigh, keeping balls in the air...
  10. I would also consider myself fairy minimalist, but necessity- 6 people, 1100sqft! Clothes are definitely minimalist. Each child has 3 drawers MALM (Ikea) drawers, and the couple of spare drawers that leaves between all the kids are used for kid sized sheets and bedding. My only tip is that maintaining minimalism takes continuous work. I wish it could be a set-it-and-forget-it system, but when 6 people are bringing "junk" into the house, the upkeep needs to be regular and ruthless. We typically do a deep clean before Christmas decorations go up, and another in the spring. This includes toys, games, clothes, and papers. I regularly purger our shelves, but do have a SIGNIFICANT number of books out on display and I don't mind that because nicely shelved books don't look messy or busy to me like some other items of visual clutter. Aside from these major family decluttering, we regularly deep clean the kids' bedrooms. I do very little storage of hand-me-downs, either from my own kids or friends' kids. Only outerwear, shoes in excellent condition, and other pricy items that are not overly used.
  11. For anyone still following, I found and really enjoyed this video: I would NOT pre-set up as she has done, but I like many of the tips and tricks throughout the video. I've decided to go full-on bullet journal for my own planner, and just put things in willy-nilly order and add an index in the front. Reworking my system regularly helps me stay engaged and motivated. It's taken me a long time to stop looking for "The System" and just find this year's system instead.
  12. Any easy way to do this for math is to just print out some standard scope and sequence, like the table of contents from another math program like Singapore. Scan it from time to time to make sure you are more-or-less covering the material using more out-of-the-box means. Easy.
  13. Excellence in Lit looks so interesting! This is why I try not to hang out here too often, it makes me want to throw all my plans in the air and add new stuff. 😂
  14. One of the more interesting things that has happened in our homeschool over the last year is- for certain subjects- a move toward buddy learning. I sit down with my two oldest and I learn WITH them. This has been true for Latin last year, and now Latin, history, and geography this year. I love "teaching" in this way because I want my kids to gradually move from a mindset of learning to a mindset of self-teaching by the end of their time with me, and like all things in parenting, modeling that behavior is the most effective way to transmit it. I know this isn't pretty like, a mural or wall display or a 3 act play, but this is how we've gone out of the box. I also put together all of our subjects myself (except math), which I really enjoy and can tailor to our interests to a certain extent. We don't do tests, but this year (7th), I will begin writing some evaluation notes in my son's planner.
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