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Everything posted by imagine.more

  1. On chaining pokemon into other interests... Pokemon was originally created by a guy who was studying insects. So you could study biology...insects and basic animal classification by piggy-backing off of Pokemon. And I agree with doing themed worksheets with pokemon stickers or clipart or something. I did that with My Little Pony to motivate my preschooler to potty train. My boys (8 and 6) are obsessed with Pokemon and so I see what kind of hold it can have. I'm also young enough to have had friends into that in school. One friend drew pokemon and digimon endlessly and by high school started drawing her own cartoons. She got into the Art Institute of Atlanta with it!
  2. Yes, and I understand that's the method behind Saxon. But we've been doing the program exactly as recommended and written, yet the students are drowning. They don't 'get' math at a core understanding. As in, they can do the procedures when you tell them what to do but struggle to apply it in real situations/word problems, which seems odd because Saxon has TONS of word problems and we often go over them in class. I have 1-2 who are making A's but many others are failing most tests the first time around. And I have been assigning the entire problem sets because I'm aware that it's how Saxon works, hence the 9 hours they're spending on math every week. Seems absurd when my kids, and many others, spend half that time learning math with other math programs and get the same scores on standardized tests. I'm not going to agree with Saxon's spiral math method from a pedagogical viewpoint. I just need ideas for how to make it click for my students who aren't succeeding with it as written, know what I mean? When the answer isn't simply to switch to a different curriculum, as it would typically be for a homeschooling family who just picked Saxon and found it didn't suit them. If you do the lesson orally together in class, assign the entire practice set, check the answers, give the weekly tests, and the kids don't succeed....what then?
  3. I've been meaning to watch that Math series on Netflix! It's even on my Queue, lol! I like the "all numbers can be done and undone" language. I've of course explained that concept but never using that language and I like the simplicity of it. The drawing out is such a problem too. I can definitely focus on insisting on that too. These kids are so used to "just do what the textbook says" kind of math that they balk at having to think about it too much. And I get panicked thinking how many problems they're supposed to complete if multiple problems require drawing it out and spending a good bit of time on it. As it is they spend 1 hour on instruction MWF and are taking 3 hours to finish their homework on Tues and another 3 hours on Thurs. That seems absurd when my boys take 30 minutes per day on Singapore Math and my daughter takes 60 minutes per day on Math U See.
  4. So I teach at a 3-day a week co-op/school for homeschoolers. It's great and I'm enjoying it. But, they use Saxon Math and many of the students are struggling. I'd say about half of the kids in each grade aren't really understanding math at the conceptual level. But the overall curriculum choice is not my immediate concern. I'm looking for tips to supplement or adapt Saxon Math to remediate the areas they're struggling in for my own class, which is Algebra 1/2. (I opted my own kids out of the math) Right now a few of the issues we're dealing with are: - a lack of understanding of basic algebraic equations (like how to isolate the variable on one side to solve the problem), - geometry concepts such as finding volume on complex word problems (Saxon has some doozies!), - fractions (we spent two days reviewing fractions in Fall which helped clear up some issues but they still freak over fractions when included in algebraic equations). How can I make the Saxon Algebra 1/2 program work well for us? Is there anything I could change or supplement in it to help the tricky areas? Also, there are SOO MANY problems! But very few to practice the current lesson's new concept. So they are being asked to move on before mastering the previous one. And I have to keep to a specific pace because the co-op uses Seton Home Study as the basis and they require you to get through the entire program in 36 weeks, which means I MUST do 4 lessons every week and a test. How do I somehow keep the busy work in check while making sure they have enough practice?
  5. My 8 year old is just finishing Singapore 4B. He LOVES Singapore, I LOVE Singapore (wish I'd been taught math this way in public school!), but we're on an awfully tight budget this spring. He wants to keep moving ahead and his assessor agrees. In fact, she suggested that the only reason he didn't score higher on the Woodcock Johnson math portion was because he simply hadn't been exposed to it and that he'll be ready for Algebra in a couple years. So, I want to let him move on to the next level of math content. But with the budget I'm looking for ways to get out of buying a second math curriculum for this academic year, lol! So, I have Math Mammoth all the way through 7th grade, which I got ages ago for my older daughter when there was an excellent deal. For those of you who have used Math Mammoth for part or all of elementary, did it adequately prepare your child for AoPS-level Pre-Algebra and Algebra? How do you feel it compares to Singapore? And did your accelerated learner enjoy it, or at least not dislike it?
  6. I got a job at a university-model school this year and it's been a big change for us from straight homeschooling. Being new to the area it has helped us all meet people more quickly. Especially my teen. I think in your situation I'd try it. What's a year or a semester in the end? If it's not helpful drop it, but if it helps then you've found your solution. Especially if you live in an area with few homeschoolers.
  7. Math U See has good, uncluttered pages and really helped my daughter to understand math better. She was also able to do basic operations but was drowning with learning more complicated division and fractions. MUS really helped with that. One downside is that you do have to kind of backtrack with it to master the foundational concepts to then move forward. But then that's necessary with anything when you're remediating I think. We tried Saxon, Singapore, and Math Mammoth before, all of which were a disaster.
  8. Yes, I do. I'm on my phone but I'll link it later. It's sorely neglected ever since I took this job, but I'm hoping to post some more this summer when things die down. I'm currently teaching 12 hours a week plus tutoring in OG 6 hours a week and of course homeschooling :) It's crazy!
  9. This is what we are running into. Now when we started I didn't know Ana had a language disorder...it was always chalked up to her hearing issues and growing up in a Spanish-speaking home. So now we're stuck in level 5 and she's doing okay but doesn't understand any of the meaning of the words. It's tough, it's like half of the words are nonsense words to her :P On the other hand, Barton has been ahmmmaazzing for Ana! She was totally illiterate 3 years ago and now she reads real books. She can spell soooo much better. Her confidence is way up in reading. In my 8th grade homeschool co-op class Ana reads the assignments to her classmate, a very bright but dyslexic girl who has had non-OG tutoring for 2 years with no progress. That is incredible if you know all the struggles Ana has. So for now we keep going and I tweak tons. I've taken to writing my own lists of words for each lesson and I'm making some different stories. But at what point do I just decide it's easier to but Wilson materials, coerce DH into making me some wooden tiles (love those things!) and do it on my own? The only thing holding me back honestly is that I wonder if Wilson has as good of explanations of the "why" to some of the rules. Because Barton's explanations are top notch and just click with my daughter especially, but also with my other students. Oh, I have to brag on my tutoring student though! She's about to finish Level 6 and she's just rocking it! Her fluency is picking up and she's able to read and spell SUCH complex words now and can explain why it's spelled the way it is or read the way it is. All that progress in just 18 months! :) Barton has been great for her.
  10. Mine took over mostly at 7. I still help with the right hand since that's hard for him being right-handed, but he does it mostly himself and does a decent job of it.
  11. Maybe try to incorporate Simultaneous Oral Spelling, if you google it you should find stuff. Lots of Orton Gillingham tutors incorporate that for sight words. Also, some sight words you later learn the rules for. Such as "The" if you pronounce it with a long-e that's essentially just an open syllable. Others like "for" also make sense once you cover r-controlled vowels. So you could re-teach some sight words later when you discover the rule it follows. Then you're teaching it phonetically.
  12. As an update, I came across a method for improving speech and writing in older kids with MERLD. Basically it codes grammar (which I was meaning to cover more with Ana anyway now that she can read okay). It's called Shape Coding. Seems really neat so I'm going to learn a bit more and see if some or all of the concepts could be helpful. :)
  13. Her language scores were way low, from <1st percentile to a max of 5th percentile. I agree that the good pragmatics/low vocab does seem to also point to her ID versus being on the autism spectrum.
  14. Geodob, yes we know her type and severity of hearing impairment with and without aids. She's moderate-sloping-to-profoundly deaf in both ears. With aids she is at roughly 85% understanding and when adding lip reading it's about 95%, and we ask questions to double check for understanding to catch any of those 5% errors. The best guess doctors have based on her articulation and history is that she began losing her hearing sometime after infancy but before kindergarten.
  15. I don't think she is on the autism spectrum, it doesn't fit with her issues generally. I suppose it's possible but I'd be very surprised for her. I did some digging through her old medical records. We were given a huge stack of these papers at adoption, most of which were copies of stuff we already had but there are a few details I missed originally in looking it over. She's had several SLP evaluations starting at age 8 when she was first diagnosed as hearing impaired and just before she received her hearing aids for the first time. Then again every 1-2 years since then, but of course with different assessments because why be consistent....that would be too sensible! :001_rolleyes: At 11 years old her SLP did diagnose her as having a Mixed Expressive-Receptive Language Disorder. Before that they had chalked it up to deafness but then realized her lack of progress went beyond that because she consistently showed that with aids and proper lipreading she was able to correctly hear and repeat language adequately. That term was again used by her SLP from a year ago. Her pragmatics have always been noted as being very normal. Which is part of why I don't actually suspect autism for her. She doesn't bear any resemblance in symptoms to teens I know on the autism spectrum, including one in my co-op class alongside her. In fact, her struggles are almost opposite, like a lot of dyslexics but way more extreme because of course most dyslexics do not struggle with oral language and higher order thinking, those are usually strengths. As for whether there is a difference between her expressive and receptive scores: Her expressive and receptive language is progressing (very very slowly) closely together. Receptive is slightly higher than Expressive usually. 2015 CELF-4: Receptive - Standard Score (SS) 76 Expressive - SS 64 2013 Picture Vocabulary: Receptive - SS 74 (age equivalency of 7) Expressive - SS 75 (age equivalency of 6) kbutton, We are waiting on a call from the social worker to get her on the ID Waiver list. That's something her neuropsych here recommended getting started now so you're totally right. Anyway, so, I guess a Mixed Expressive-Receptive Language Disorder is where I should start looking? Crimson Wife, I was just looking at Landmark's website separately actually. I agree, their resources look like they could be a good fit. I'm going to research those a bit more for sure. I'm going to check out the Grammar Processing Program too. I've been looking for something to supplement our Barton work. I've noticed real gains in her ability to make a sensible sentence since starting Barton but she needs more help in grammar for sure to improve any more.
  16. Crimson Wife, actually we're in Virginia now (long story, but we moved here for DH's work basically :) ) Still close to PA though, we're 2.5 hours from our old town. Do you think insurance would cover another neuropsych eval if we have one that is ~3 years old? And out of state? They might since she hasn't had any neuropsych evaluations here in VA. I'm not sure. Her SLP is working on vocabulary, but not in a systematic way. We talked today and coming up with a set goal based on the Most Frequently Used English Words dictionary, which is often recommended for ELL. Because we've been at a loss on where to start exactly, besides just starting with some 2nd grade lists since age 6-7 is where Ana is at. She's been working on word lists based off of our homeschool studies since fall, in addition to working on subject-verb agreement and extending sentences to be more descriptive.
  17. So Ana (age 15, mild ID, hearing impaired, dyslexia, ADHD) seems to not be progressing in language skills STILL. We've had her 4 years now and our home is VERY language-rich. We make sure to speak where she can read our lips, try to ask questions to check that she heard us, watch the TV with the subtitles on 100% of the time, and enforce her wearing her hearing aids all the time. Our birth kids have unusually high vocabularies and complex sentence structure from an early age, even our dyslexic 6 year old who isn't even able to get the added benefit of reading real books independently yet. We assumed Ana's language issues were from her other disabilities (primarily deafness) but I was reading "Overcoming Dyslexia" and realized that the description of a Language Learning Disability is spot on for Ana. She does not retain new vocabulary, does not ever learn vocabulary in context (it must be explained to her). Even when paired with actions she doesn't understand or remember words long-term. It took explicit teaching to teach her what aluminum foil is. Her vocabulary and sentence structure is still at roughly age 6-7. It's been that for YEARS. She attends speech therapy 2x a week now with a lovely therapist who has direct experience with deaf children. Also, it's not just an issue at the word level. She still constantly mixes up Subject-Verb agreement. Constantly. And plural vs singular words too. She'll say "Both cat are on the table." and be all "Oh yeah, well, I meant cats" when we correct her. She gets it right sometimes but not consistently. Her sentence structure is all wrong a lot of the time and she gets by and passes as okay in everyday conversation by using simplistic speech and responses. It's a pervasive problem across the board. And I feel bad because in math she's making progress, passed the California Achievement Test at a 7th grade level (woot!!) in calculations. But you add in word problems and she scored at like a 2nd grade level. Even her speech therapist seems perplexed by her lack of progress so I'm getting the sense this is not just a HOH thing. And again, if it was just HOH then the fact that she has hearing aids and speech therapy and that we are actively working to help her vocabulary and language skills should be resulting in some gains. Has anyone dealt with this? It sounds similar to what some autistic kids deal with in having aberrant language patterns when they're young but they seem to improve generally, at least anecdotally. Ana, however, doesn't. And the typical advice of "just read good books to her, explain things, let her learn it in context" hasn't been working because we've been doing that for 4 years. It's hard to explain but if you met her you'd get the idea after trying to work with her that she's capable of more mentally than she's doing verbally. Like I know she'll always be behind but I don't think her IQ even accounts for the language issues we're seeing and the just lack of progress.
  18. I have a 15 year old daughter with mild ID and language issues, etc. and we deal with inappropriate behavior too and I know it can be frustrating. However, we've not dealt with anything on that level. It sounds like there might be something more going on besides just the ID and SPD, especially because this is out of character for him. It could just be hormones gone wild without him having the ability to totally understand his feelings, but I'd want to rule other stuff out just to be sure first. Either way your pediatrician could help connect you with some therapists or ABA people to help him turn his internal-speech around. Also, I remember reading in "Simply Classical" about how that author had good progress made in her son's negative thoughts and actions around that age by beginning a very simple thankfulness journal and such. I also imagine it might be extra important to fill his time/thoughts with positive books, movies, and music. If you're Christian there are these lovely little Scripture Lullaby CD's that are very soothing and not overly kiddish. My kids love them and honestly I enjoy listening to them too :) Anyway, if you're not Christian you might find some other soothing music for him to listen to at night, either classical or with positive affirmations. Good luck, I'm so sorry you're having these issues, I'm sure it's very stressful right now!
  19. I wear mine braided nearly every day. I french braid on both sides and sweep up into a bun often. I think that's the kind of look that can work at any age.
  20. I will echo this, Juliet Marillier is excellent! I'd start with Daughter of the Forest. Her books are mostly set in Ireland.
  21. I've had 3 natural births and the last time tried an epidural. Natural births are no biggie. Yes it's pain but not in a "ow, there's something very wrong!!!!" way. More similar to the 'pain' involved in lifting something heavy or running several miles. It's a productive pain. I'll say I am heavily considering a natural birth should I get pregnant again. Yes the epidural was nice but also kinda a hassle and it was painful being put in. Also, I really didn't need that much relief, it kinda felt like overkill to feel absolutely nothing. I suggest reading lots of positive, normal birth stories. Nothing scary or unusual. Focus on those good, normal, natural birth stories and it will calm you.
  22. My 4 year old daughter does the same thing. Her syllable is "to" as in "go to the door". So protect becomes to-tect, pretend becomes to-tend, etc. She also calls Unicorns Me-corns 😂 Which is adorable. Anyway, I've started correcting her by repeating it carefully and helping her say it more correctly but at this age I wouldn't worry too much about it yet.
  23. My blood pressure trends low most of the time as well and it gets lower during pregnancy (usually hovering at about 85-90/55-60. Anyway, yes I do get fatigue and lightheaded a lot during pregnancy, likely from the blood pressure. Church is one of the worst times because of the sitting/standing/kneeling. Honestly I can only sit and sing or I can stand and say nothing. If I stand and sing/pray I get faint very quickly. Also, showers are difficult for some reason, maybe the standing + hot steam? I dunno. Anyway, I've never found a cure. My iron is good, I've tried salt and water, neither really made a difference long-term. Basically just take it easy.
  24. I think I straddle the GenX/Millennial generations based on birth year but yes, GenX are 'known' ironically for being apathetic and ignored, haha! My high school graduating class was proud of the fact that we were THE most apathetic class to ever go through. Many of our honors kids didn't bother graduating because it just didn't mean much. I never picked up my own high school diploma because I hated my school and didn't care to have any dubious recognition they might give me since I know for a fact I graduated with people who were illiterate and we all got the same diploma. So yeah, apathy, lol!
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