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About Aspasia

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    Hive Mind Level 6 Worker: Scout Bee

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    New York City

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  1. Thank you, thank you, thank you, everyone! This is exactly the kind of insight I was needing. Definitely going to pass on most of these classes, enticing as they may be! And hey, we're gonna save thousands of dollars, so that's a nice bonus. 🙂
  2. We live in New York City (Manhattan) and there are just so many amazing homeschool resources here: classes at the Historical Society, classes at the Met, ranger-led nature study at Central Park, co-ops, sports groups, chorus, theater classes, debate, Lego robotics, civics/current events, live action role playing, etc. It's all so enticing, but the catch is that almost all of it costs a ton of money. Like, $350 per semester, per class. I have four kids, so this can add up really fast, not to mention the fact that we'd spend the bulk of every day running around the city to all these classes and
  3. Thank you! These are such good insights and suggestions! I like the idea of doing some audio stuff during breakfast. We can't do them in the car, because we live in NYC and don't drive. One of the challenges I'm dealing with is that DD11 really struggles with math and needs me to be right there the entire time, mainly to make sure she doesn't get off track. If she starts doing a problem set wrong, the whole day's work gets thrown off and we just have to fix it the next day. It's a better use of my time to just stay close while she works. I am looking into Kumon or Sylvan or something to l
  4. I'm having a really hard time accomplishing everything I want to accomplish every day. I KNOW there are enough hours for these tasks (I don't think I'm being overly ambitious), but I'm just not making it happen. One problem is that we have activities a couple days a week that begin at 1:00. I just want to get all our table work (three R's stuff), read alouds, and history/science done between 9:00 and 1:00. That's not crazy, right? So why do I never (or rarely) accomplish it? I need some time management tips from the wise, please.
  5. Ooh, thank you! These sound perfect! ETA: Just looked up the classes at the Historical Society and they have one that is learning history through Broadway musicals! Are you serious?!? This is the dream. My 11-year-old would DIE. She's a huge musical theater buff. My neighbor across the hall has a friend who pulled her kids out in middle school to homeschool and they're now in high school. She said they are loving it and have TONS of homeschool friends, so I'm definitely gonna get her friend's contact info to get a feel for these activities and groups. I know that the homeschool c
  6. We JUST got all the moving boxes out a couple weeks ago! Phew! The kids ask to come home almost daily. And once one of them mentions it, it's like a floodgate opens and everyone else lets their pleas flow. I'm still just validating the struggles to adjust and reminding them that this is a big transition and will take time. I'm sure to help them look for the things they like about school. But now that things are settling down from the last 6 months, I'm actually starting to miss our old lifestyle, too, so I can actually relate to their pleas. I honestly wonder if my burnout was more ab
  7. It's because of what they tell me. They complain every day about school and cry about having to go back. They're begging to homeschool. When I say they're doing well academically, I just mean their performance is up to standard (except my 1st grader, because this school is big on early academics and I have not been, but she doesn't seem to notice), so it's not like their unhappiness is about struggling or being behind. And by "doing well socially," I just mean that they have each found some friends, so it's not like loneliness or feeling left out is the cause of their unhappiness either.
  8. We're actually at 82nd St. Her school is on 93rd and her peers are all AMAZED that she lives so close. She's literally the only kid who walks out of the building and goes east. The others all go west toward the 1 train. And yeah, Lower Manhattan would be a stretch, but who knows? My husband works down there (right next to Stuyvesant, actually), so any kid who went to high school in that direction could ride with him, I guess. 😀
  9. They have been off (they start back on Wednesday). We've done some things around the city, like Christmas markets and caroling, but we've mostly hung out at the park and at home. They are just desperate for chilling out. I think you're right that they won't be happy exploring as much as I would on my own. I'm kind of a go-go-goer. It would be just one or two outings a week for our homeschool. But we're literally right next door to the Natural History Museum, and we haven't even been since we moved in. We've been there on vacation before, but not in the 6 weeks that we've lived here, whic
  10. My cousin's kids go to affluent, high achieving schools in Chapel Hill NC and she describes a very similar environment to the one your friend's kid is experiencing--cutthroat, intense, high burnout. That stuff is just not for me. I've thought exactly the same thing about the race/class issue with NYC schools. And to be honest, we had to examine our own biases when we were offered schools for our middle schooler, because the demographics at all of them were very, very different from our own. It was uncomfortable to face my own stuff and realize that when it came down to it, maybe I wasn't
  11. That's a really good idea. I will definitely have them take those 7th grade tests. I've been immersed in learning about the NYC public school system for the last few months, and it's wild. I really appreciate this tip, because I didn't know that homeschoolers could take the exams.
  12. This is something I think about daily! I'm all for finishing what you start, but I also don't think that we have to stay committed to "wrong" decisions if/when we determine that they weren't the best fit. I think the biggest thing is, if we don't want to do the NYC public school thing (and it is a THING) long term, then why put them through finishing the year just to make sure that we get an accurate sense of what it's like? As some of the other posters have alluded to, middle school and high school admissions here are intense. My neighbor has a 4th grader this year (4th grade grades, tes
  13. UGHHHHH. Some of you may remember that we just moved to New York City and put our kids in public school. They've been in for a little over a month, including my middle schooler (she got assigned to an okay school, based on availability). They are doing fine academically and socially. Even my middle schooler, who I was concerned about because of weak test scores, is actually doing really well on all her assignments and is really enjoying her classes (I think she's just not a great test taker, probably because we only take one test a year 😂). The 6th and 3rd graders are very responsible and do t
  14. This is what I'm afraid of. DD11 is pretty adaptable and she's really excited about the move, but I definitely worry about her (and actually my DS8 even more, just because is very sensitive and NOT very adaptable). Would you mind sharing more of your experience? What, if anything, might have eased the transition for you? Do you think I should homeschool through the end of the year while we adjust to city life? Maybe moving to the city AND starting public school, combined, is just too much of a shock for everyone.
  15. Thank you so much! That's a great idea to call the schools directly and ask about admissions for homeschoolers. Definitely gonna do that on Monday. And I will for sure reach out to NYCHEA. I've got that Dec 1 application deadline seared in my brain. It's basically the only date in my life right now, lol.
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