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forty-two

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About forty-two

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  1. Fwiw, though the cursive program we used slanted (Smithhand), my dds naturally didn't slant and I didn't make a thing of it (cursive was hard enough) and it wasn't a problem - they ended up with a nice-looking, legible and practical cursive hand. I mean, if you otherwise like the program and it is otherwise going well - your dc's non-slanted cursive looks legible enough and they aren't having difficulties with learning a non-slanted cursive from slanted teaching - I'd think you could just ignore the slant but otherwise go on with the program you have.
  2. I keep a full bookcase shelf reserved for library books - it's our "library shelf". (Actually, we have two library shelves, one for kid books and one for my books.) All library books live on the library shelf. When the kids were littler, I was really strict about making sure all library books were put back immediately after use, but now that they are older (and unattended books don't tend to get lost under furniture anymore), we have a daily clean-up time and any library books laying around get put away then. I've found that having a dedicated library shelf works so much better than any other kind of library book spot - it's easier and more convenient get books out and put them back, and the books stay neater, plus it piggybacks on the same "book picking up and storing" habits they have for all other books. Eta: At your kids' ages, I picked up any unattended library book I saw and put it away immediately (or called for the relevant child to put it away while I watched). Waiting till evening clean-up time was too late. Whenever I saw them get up from reading library books, I reminded them to go put those books right away. But there was a lot of me just constantly grabbing unattended library books throughout the day, every time I saw one out.
  3. Yeah, PL is *way* too easy for someone who's done a year of VL - it's for absolute beginners, and young beginners at that, early elementary. I was wondering why you didn't just go onto the next year of VL, not wanting video-based Latin makes sense. Did you complete all 30 lessons in VL1? How well would you say she's mastered the material? Specifically, how well did she do on the translations, the part C worksheets? Because FFL would be mostly review after finishing VL1, albeit review from a different perspective, but if she did well on the part B grammar worksheets, but not well on the part C translations, then hitting it again in FFL might be a good thing. (As I recall, the grading for younger-than-high-school students in VL is based off part B and the quizzes, not the translations. I'm doing VL with my middle schooler, and ime the translations in part C are by far the most difficult part.) Also, if she's shaky on her accuracy - she gets the gist, but she isn't precise - FFL hits precision hard. Likewise, if she's shaky on her memory of endings and grammar, FFL hits memory work hard. (In doing VL, I'd say that it focuses more on comprehension than memorization - I've added a lot of FFL-style memory work into it, and FFL-style grammar analysis, while keeping the comprehension-first (grammar analysis second) focus of VL.) But if she did well on the part C translations, especially if you made it all the way through lesson 30, then FFL might be too easy. (VL 1&2 are roughly equivalent to all four levels of the Form series, in that you've more or less covered all the grammar at the end.) Certainly FFL doesn't have anything like the sheer amount of translation work that VL part C has - it's mostly sentence-level translations, maybe a paragraph toward the end - nothing like the 1-2 pages/lesson that VL has. If she likes having a ton of Latin to read and work through, she might find FFL frustrating. But if she was overwhelmed or not enthused with the translation work in part C of VL, if she was far more comfortable with the part B worksheets, if she prefers a word and sentence level focus - then FFL might be right up her alley. You could print out the samples and see what she thinks. (I don't know about the logistics of doing FFL without the video. I think it goes fine, so long as you the teacher feel decently confident teaching from the book, but I've only looked at FFL, never done it.)
  4. Is it this Visual Latin: https://compassclassroom.com/shop/product/visual-latin-1/ The one from Compass Classroom, with Dwayne Thomas? And how old is your dd?
  5. Noticed this when I was catching up on the thread. My girls have taken 2.5yrs of piano, and my ds is going to start this year. I haven't said anything wrt the girls, other than mentioning to their first teacher that middle dd was still shaky on her reading. With ds, I'll probably say that he's not reading yet (just started blends with him). Generally the girls have done well with piano. The one thing that has been particularly difficult, including provoking resistance, is rhythm work, especially metronome work, and I do think it might be connected to the auditory processing stuff. When we started, the metronome just had no meaning for oldest dd, and not much more for middle dd. Their teacher would put on the metronome and oldest dd just couldn't play to it at all. It was like nails on a chalkboard for their teacher, to hear dd play so utterly oblivious to the metronome. Oldest dd has said to me that she just doesn't feel the beat of her piano pieces (unlike her ballet pieces). (And oldest dd is utterly resistant to the idea of non-piano metronome work; I got a lot of good ideas here, but she's so resistant that I decided not to push, especially since she *is* improving her rhythm. And her music theory work is helping, in that she's quite good at the theory work. So when she has a piece she needs to count, but is refusing to count because it's "too hard", I can make a copy and tell her to treat it as a theory exercise. Writing out the count at the table takes the pressure off, compared to having to figure it out on the fly at the piano. And then she can use the marked-up copy to help her learn to play it.) What ended up working is for me to learn to sing the piece to the metronome, teach the girls to be able to sing it with me, and then I sing it to the metronome while they try to match me. IOW, *I* give the metronome meaning for them (which, incidently, has improved my own ability to feel the beat in music tremendously; I never used to be able to feel the difference between time signatures, and now I'm really starting to understand why a given piece has a given time signature). The girls have improved. I think the metronome actually has meaning for middle dd now, and oldest dd can more-or-less play to a count now. I can do metronome work with oldest dd without feeling like I'm trying trying to hold back racing horses with nothing but the sound of my voice. (Oh my, the first piece we did, she'd ignore my count as easily as she'd ignore the metronome, and practically sweep me away with her - *I* couldn't hold to the metronome against her.) (I will say, as we've been doing metronome work this week, I've been tired, and a couple of times I just suddenly lost all sense of meaning in the metronome beat. It was freaky, I've counted off a few measures lead-in over a hundred times now, never had a problem - I've literally been counting this piece in my dreams - and then all of a sudden I lost the beat. Bam, the metronome went from "1-&-2-&-3-&-4-&-" to just fast beeps. I've lost the count before, but never just completely had the whole sense and meaning and rhythm just disappear like that, like a light went out. There was no meaning at all to it. I had to turn it off and restart it in order to kind of reset my brain and get the meaning back. Pretty sure that's how the metronome is all the time to oldest dd. I can see now, how she just tunes it out like so much extraneous noise.) Not sure there's a huge amount of point to this, only that I saw "starting piano" and thought, "We do piano! Maybe something about our experience will be helpful!" I am pretty sure neither of the girls' teachers understood just how truly awful oldest dd is wrt the metronome. They pull out the metronome in class, dd utterly fails to play to it, and so they quickly give up and assign it for homework :lol:. Whereupon I become the bridge between the metronome and the girl. (Current teacher will sometimes play the piece with dd, like how I sing the piece, and dd can match the teacher's playing like she does my singing.) If I couldn't bridge the gap, I'd probably say something to the teacher about their issues, at least about how truly hard metronome work is for them, so she'd understand it's not just "not trying". ~*~ Random music/auditory-processing remark: I played violin in school, but my ear was never quite good enough - I relied on a tuner for a lot of things I was really supposed to be able to do by ear. But when I picked it back up a bit, post remediating the girls, my ear was a *lot* better. I could match the note on the violin to the pitch in my head, and be *right* every time. My ear's good enough to trust, now. I remember someone on the boards whose son had auditory processing issues and improved them a lot through playing the violin; I feel like I did the opposite, improved my violin playing through improving my auditory processing issues. IDK whether this would help your dd, but it definitely helps me: the Suzuki practice of listening to your practice pieces over and over till you practically have them memorized. It short-circuits a ton of issues for me, when I can match my playing to what I hear in my head. Heck, it helps in counting the girls' pieces when we do metronome work: if it's one I've heard them play a lot, it's already in my head and I can pick up the count easily. And wrt giving rhythm meaning, to get the rhythm into your bones, it helps to move, your whole body if possible (there's a reason dd can feel the beat of her dance pieces but not her piano ones). The girls refuse to do it :sigh:, but *I* do it because I need all the help I can get to hold the rhythm against them when we do metronome work; if I start to lose the feel of the rhythm, I start bending my knees and swaying, brings it right back.
  6. Anyone in TX can get a Houston library card for free. You can even do it completely online. We live in the boonies and our library doesn't have *any* online resources, so I am really thankful for my HPL card. I've never checked out audio books from them yet, but they have a lot.
  7. FWIW, I had/have auditory processing issues, and pure auditory input, with no visual cues, is torturous - especially unfamiliar input. It is absolutely the hardest comprehension task I face. (I used to have to practically read lips in "casual chit-chat with relative strangers at parties" type situations in order to make sense of what I heard. And TV watching became so. much. better. once I learned about the wonders of closed captioning - for a long while I practically couldn't watch something *without* captioning - taking away that visual input was like taking my ears away. Although it wasn't so much losing my ears as losing my understanding - knowing I could hear it yet not being able to understand it - so frustrating. It tends to track with how tired I am, or how much competing noise there is. I have gotten *much* better since I started remediating the kids' phonemic processing, though, and ended up remediating mine with it. It wasn't a problem in school since everything important was either repeated ad nauseam or was also conveyed in print or else could be inferred from what everyone else was doing - there was always some way to fill in the blanks.) As my sister commented once, when I said our library only had the audiobook of the book I wanted: "It's like they don't even have it at all." Audiobooks take *so* much concentration, and if you miss anything - which happens any time your mind wanders for an instant or something distracts you - it's so inconvenient to try to go back to it. I've only had success listening to familiar audiobooks. You know how reading comprehension goes up when familiarity with the subject goes up? It's like that - my listening comprehension goes up when I already know most of what's going on. You are primed to expect the right things and when your attention falters, you have a good chance of being able to fill in the missing blanks and catch back up. (And truly, I know our few audiobook favorites so very, very well that I can tune in whenever and enjoy till I tune back out - I'm never actually deliberately sustaining attention.) But really, the number one thing that improves my auditory comprehension is complementary visual input. WRT your dd liking read-alouds but not audio books, with read-alouds you have visual input, you have the chance to ask questions or ask to go back and repeat, plus you have the joy of snuggling to offset the boredom/frustration of not comprehending everything :lol:. My kids actually like audiobooks, but only familiar ones (that's the only reason I have had opportunity to listen to a lot of audiobooks). They listened to nothing on audiobook that they hadn't first had read-aloud to them (or read themselves). They have actively resisted listening to new, strange ones, although in their case it's at least half fear of the unknown - both how well-read audiobooks are more intense than reading them yourself and just how new things were scary. They likewise resisted new movies and sometimes new books over new=scary. Truly unfamiliar new read-alouds were initially tolerated only because of the protective snuggling-with-mom effect. (So resisting new audiobooks was at least as much an anxiety "no like-y new things" issue as anything. Although I can see how the sheer frustration of trying and failing to comprehend could prompt some anxiety-fueled resistance, too.) IDK what my actual point is here, wrt whether you should bribe her into listening to new audiobooks or not. I'm mostly just attempting to describe reasons why someone with bad auditory processing might resist listening to audiobooks. My kids, when they were pre-readers (and even when readers), did really enjoy listening to audiobooks of favorite books, and I could appreciate them too. It made the listening comprehension challenge both doable and pleasant - the story was beloved enough that it made the effort of listening worthwhile, and the familiarity of the story made the challenge not too bad. Maybe start with favorite read-alouds? Or, piggybacking on your easy/short book idea, maybe you could do picture books, have both the audiobook and the print book with illustrations, so she could look at the pictures while she listens - give her some interesting visual cues to help.
  8. Tbh, I'd teach the 7th grader and just not worry about science for the 1st grader, other than maybe some science-y read-alouds.
  9. Is this Wikipedia article on the Five Articles of Remonstrance better? https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Five_Articles_of_Remonstrance I'm Lutheran, I don't really have a dog in this fight, but fwiw I agreed with more of the Arminian points in my original link than the Calvinist ones. I take your word for it the link was inaccurate wrt Arminians, but from an outside perspective the link's description of Arminians nevertheless seemed like something reasonable people might believe, not strawman-ish.
  10. It is entirely possible to be neither. Arminian-v-Calvinism only really applies to churches that came out of the Reformed branch of the Reformation (such as Presbyterian, Baptist, etc.; churches that came into being from formerly Reformed people rejecting some/all of Reformed theology (such as Arminians) nevertheless count as part of the Reformed branch of the Reformation.) But if general you came out of one of the other three branches of the Reformation (Lutheran, Church of England, or Anabaptist (Anabaptist meaning Mennonites/Amish/etc, not Baptist)), or are Catholic/Orthodox, the Arminian/Calvinist division doesn't apply. The Calvinist/Arminian debate is an intra-Reformed debate, and is meaningless as a way to characterise non-Reformed theology. This link has a quick comparison of the five points of Calvinism versus the five points of Arminianism. ETA: As far as it goes, I think AoG is more on the Arminian side, while Episcopalians are mostly "does not apply" (separate branch of the Reformation).
  11. Two thoughts: As far as one volume readers go, Let's Read: A Linguistic Approach has a *ton* of reading material, at all levels from CVC to multi-syllable words. It's actually meant as a learn-to-read program - it's based on intuitively absorbing phonic patterns instead of explicitly learning rules - so the bulk of the book is practice reading material, arranged in a sensible phonetic progression (by an actual linguist, who pays attention to even the smallest issues), which means it works well as a reader, too. The lessons are just words and sentences and stories - pretty much *exactly* like a reader. I( use it as my primary phonics program - it has the best progression with the most reading practice of any I've seen - but I use phonics methods for teaching instead the program's more whole-word methods.) It's a big book, though, and no color/pictures. I also really like SRA's Basic Reading Series. There's seven volumes in all, but there's quite a bit in each volume (especially in the later volumes), so you could just get the one that was at the level your dd is at. I got mine used - they suffer from educational pricing 😉 - and some are easier to find than others. But they have the cutest pictures while also have a lot of good practice material (in a similar progression to Let's Read). Here's the list of titles and levels: Level 1A: A Pig Can Jig, part 1 (short A CVC words) Level 1B, A Pig Can Jig, part 2 (short A and short I CVC words) Level B: A Hen in a Fox's Den (all five short vowel CVC words) Level C : Six Ducks in a Pond (consonant blends) Level D : A King Can Swing (consonant digraphs, and some two syllable words) Level E: Kittens and Children (vowel digraphs and more two syllable words) Level F: The Purple Turtle (irregular sounds and second sounds - at the end of this kids should be reading fluently, at around a 3rd grade level)
  12. We have a Yamaha P-115, got it two years ago, and I've been pleased with it. It doesn't have that "digital" sound - they used good recordings of a grand piano - and the keys are weighted nicely. It doesn't take as much force to play as their teacher's grand piano, but uprights are the same way, and they don't have any problems moving back and forth.
  13. We Facetime as a family with grandparents. Otherwise, my kids don't have their own phones or internet-connected devices and don't do social media. They do have access to non-internet devices for mp3s, ebooks, and educational-ish games (the latter mostly during evening screen time), but even the ones exclusively used by the kids very specifically do *not* belong to the kids, but to the family. Pretty soon I'll probably get a pay-as-you-go dumb phone for general kid-out-of-the-house use, but not a phone that exclusively belongs to a given kid. IDK if that's odd here, but it was definitely odd where we used to live. I remember a few years ago, my oldest was embarrassed because over half her tween-age dance class had their own smartphones, while I, dd's *mother*, didn't even have a smartphone. A dance girl once asked for oldest dd's phone number and I gave her the house phone, and later on realized she probably wanted dd's (non-existent) cell phone so she could text her :oops. So far my kids haven't wanted to do texting or social media, so it hasn't been an issue, for which I am very thankful. They understand and currently accept they aren't getting smartphones anytime soon, and since I don't have one, it's not ridiculously abnormal to them. They know that it's kind of out of the norm, but it's currently not an in-your-face sort of out-of-the-norm. And I do talk with them about my reasons for being out-of-step here, to help them understand some of my concerns with media and device use, and so far it seems to make sense to my oldest - enough so that she's at peace with no smartphone in the foreseeable future. (She now even sees it as faintly ridiculous that so many kids have one.)
  14. IME, my kids do *so much better* when I facilitate their practice. It's like any subject - kids learn more and better and deeper when they have active adult guidance than when they are left to do it independently. Left to their own devices, my kids tend to let things slide when they get hard; if I don't pay attention, they can go 2-3 weeks making no progress, just faffing around with easy stuff and avoiding the problem piece(s). But if I *do* pay attention, I can nip problems in the bud, give them both the musical and emotional guidance they need to work through the hard bits. Five minutes with me can solve a problem that otherwise would have been left languishing till their next lesson - and allows them to make a week's progress that otherwise would have been lost. (I also make sure they put mom-defined sufficient effort in on the hard bits, instead of kid-defined "sufficient effort" ;).) It's exactly like with math or writing or whatnot: you don't make nearly as much progress with "weekly tutor as sole guidance" as you would with "weekly tutor as primary teacher" plus "daily parent facilitator". IOW, the difference between treating music as a core focus versus music as enrichment. My older two are in both piano and dance. Piano is a core focus, has mom-mandated-and-at-least-lightly-supervised daily practice, takes about as much time and focus as math and other core subjects. Dance, otoh, is just recreational for us. I don't keep on top of what the girls are learning, I don't get involved in making sure they practice or stretch between lessons - I get them to lessons and leave the rest up to them. Not surprisingly, there's magnitudes of difference between their progress in piano and their progress in dance (even though they've actually been taking dance for twice as long). But, of course, like others are saying, not everything can be done as a core subject. I've always prioritized the 3 Rs, and done elementary content subjects as enrichment (pretty much exclusively through read alouds and independent reading). But as music became a fourth core subject, I had to scale back some on math, do less of the mom-intensive Intensive Practice. As well, I try to lightly supervise piano from across the room as much as I can (usually about 2/3 of the time), even though the best progress is made when I am right there, because I simply can't take that much time out of the school day. I try to make sure I give practice more intensive focus on the weekends to make up for it. Every year, as each kid does more, I have to prioritize what core things I want them to do with me, versus what they can cover independently. There's a lot of independent time available, and not a lot of precious mom-time to go around. There's often a lot of rejiggering, as things that "should be" independent turn out to not be :sigh:. My limit seems to be three mom-taught curricula per kid, plus light piano supervision. If the piano supervision becomes focused (as it semi-regularly does), then it inevitably ends up replacing one of the core curricula for that day. So if I have more than three mom-taught programs I want to do, I can't do them all every day. If it's a more intense piano season, I have to lighten the rest. (Either I do it on purpose and with planning, or things get dropped ad-hoc - my experientially-determined limit seems fairly firm.) Over time I've dropped several "better" teacher-intensive curricula for "lesser" independent curricula, because not everything can be done to the highest level. And doing music as a core focus has proven to be at least as time consuming as other core subjects (not surprising, really, when you put it that way, but somehow I hadn't seen it coming). I figure I get three things, plus music, to really focus on with each kid each year, and it's forced me to think long and hard about my priorities. (It was a late realization that it doesn't have to be the *same* three things each year - that I can alternate what gets the intense mom focus from year to year.) And also forced me to consider the practicalities of what can and can't be done independently. I juggle the programs I really want to do with the cold hard fact that if a subject *can* be done independently by a given kid, it might *need* to be done independently - that there's just not time anymore to for me to teach things that could have be learned adequately independently, because all my time is taken up with things that *need* to be taught. (But I do determine "needs to be taught" by more than just "could they have picked up the skill on their own" - there's a lot of intangibles, a lot of spiritual and immaterial factors, that drive that decision. In many ways, the most metaphysically and spiritually important subjects are the ones that get the greatest mom-focus. But even there I still have to prioritize.)
  15. For better or worse, this is what I did. (Actually, I did even "worse", in that I blended together a bunch of stuff - LiPS and OG and Dekodiphukan - and used those approaches to teach the program I had (Let's Read: A Linguistic Approach). It worked in that LR was basically a giant book of practice material, arranged in a linguistically-sensible way (so meshed well with LiPS and OG progressions), that moved extremely slowly and incrementally, skipping nothing and practicing everything, so it lent itself nicely to being used with those methods.) Some of it was that my oldest was actually fluently reading when she flunked the pre-screening, while my middle was 5, so, idk, I didn't feel a huge urgency to get a formal diagnosis right then. (Plus I'm not even sure it was financially possible at the time - used LiPS done on the cheap was about where we were - in fact, I'm pretty sure that $90 used LiPS manual was by far the most I spent on any one item until probably last year.) I just read a ton and found lots of resources and sallied forth and put things together as I went, and managed to make it work. Probably not as good as the right experts using the right materials could have done - we had some bumbling and dead ends - but no more than tons of people on this board have had *while* using expert guidance. My oldest is going into 8th grade, and I'm pretty happy with what we accomplished with our remediation; I don't *know* that she's stealth dyslexic, but she checked all the boxes and I treated her like one and remediated her like one, and she built up a lot of her missing skills. (There's a few things that I know she's still weak on, but she can do everything she needs to do despite them and I think I'm calling it good.) I think she's in good position to be hitting high school next year. I will say that having functionally non-reading kids past the "usual" age without any nice, official diagnosis to point to (my middle and youngest didn't manage to learn to read in spite of their auditory deficiencies like oldest, but learned slowly, oh-so-slowly, as we remediated; heck, youngest is *still* in the middle of learning) - well, that can feel a little rough. Both for the kids and for me as their teacher. (Especially right now, in a new place, where I just learned that I am *definitely* being judged for ds's lack of reading :sigh.)
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