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Everything posted by MtnTeaching

  1. 2 kids - Homeschooled dyslexic dd from 2nd though graduation. ADHD ds in third grade after his diagnosis, went back to public school for 4th grade and was bored senseless, then 5th through graduation. I always thought they would go back to public school. We toured schools and I always said they could go back anytime they wanted to go. Then they got involved with sports, jobs and volunteering, homeschool enrichment programs, musical theater, made good friends, enjoyed traveling when everyone else was in school, and never looked back. DS has graduated college with an International Business degree after studying in France. DD is in her last year of double-majoring in Graphic Design and Digital Media Production. They have both said they have absolutely no regrets and loved that they "took the road less traveled".
  2. I hope he is feeling better. It is so hard to be away from them when they are sick. One time, I drove eight hours in the snow and rented a hotel room with two queen beds, just so my son would have his own bed and bathroom with he was horribly sick. Having to hike down a hallway to a communal dorm bathroom is no fun, lack of sleep, lack of decent food, dealing with doctor visits and tests. No fun.
  3. I thought I would bump this back up a bit now that the freshmen have had a chance to settle in and get a few exams/projects/papers under their belts. My dd just hit a bit of a wall and called me stressing out. She dealt with a nasty case of Lyme Disease during High School and took two gap years before heading to college as a 21 year old freshman. She worked part time those two years for...get this...our local school district (homeschool enrichment program). It was the best thing she could have done. Her work ethic and maturity was huge heading into college this year. Unfortunately, she is also dyslexic and a bit of a perfectionist. She is attending a very small school in Colorado that is a perfect fit for her, working toward dual Graphic Design and Graphic Media degrees . Her roommate was also homeschooled and my dd loves her (just not her dating drama). After working for the school system, dd has no trouble asking for helping and talking to the teachers , which is a good thing for a freshman. Her biggest problem is herself and the demands she puts on herself. Due to her past Lyme Disease, she needs to eat well, sleep well, and reduce her stress. Due to her dyslexia, everything (especially her math class this semester) takes a long time. She has been trying to make top grades in everything and I think she is wearing herself out. Her anxiety is sky high. I have made a point of letting her know that she does not have to be perfect. (After studying for days, she received a 105 on her first math test, and she has always struggled in math). We have told her repeatedly that we do not expect "A's" every time she hands something in. A low grade - or even a bad grade- is going to happen some day, and it is not the end of the world. It happens, and we will love her and be proud of her anyway. We also want her to enjoy college, enjoy the experience, make friends, enjoy living in the Rocky Mountains and all it entails (hiking, skiing, fly fishing - which she loves) and to learn how to "roll with the punches". I am just not sure how to get this through to her in a way that will reduce her anxiety.
  4. My "mild to moderate" dyslexic DD struggled with spelling. This forum has heard and offered advise to us over the years. We used Sequential Spelling, Spelling Made Simple, Spelling Workout, Barton, Logic of English, Painless Spelling, Spelling Simplified, Megawords, and a host of other spelling programs. For an entire year, every school day she worked on the same 25 sight words (would, could, should, etc.) along with 25 of her current spelling words. At the end of the year, she still could not spell the sight words. It was beyond frustrating and heartbreaking. She would be so embarrassed if anyone asked her to spell anything. Finally, this year, she had a breakthrough. She is 19 years old. Yes- it took that long for a breakthrough. She is taking a gap year and is actually working for our local public school district with their homeschool enrichment program. She has had to write emails everyday to multiple other teachers, parents, and administration staff. She worked hard with spell checker and closely re-reading to make sure she was spelling the words correctly. She finally "gets it". It took a long time and a lot of years, but she is able to do it now - when it really counts. Keep plugging along. It will eventually get through, or at least the processes that will help your DD to help herself, will get through. Looking back, I do not think any single one of these programs was the magic spell fairy. I think it was a combination of coming at it from different thoughts. Rules have their place, visual and patterns (like Sequential Spelling) have their place, too. In the end for us, it was her drive to do a good job that really pushed my DD to focus on her spelling. She still struggles with spelling and probably always will, but she has the tools to help her and she knows how to use them.
  5. Our DS lost his scholarship. Ugg. It was painful. He was a Resident Assistant and living 8 hours away. He had a full ride between the scholarship and the job (housing and meals). Unfortunately, the amount of work and stress of the RA job dealing with everything from suicide attempts, to overdoses, and abuse, while carrying over a full load, caused a crash and burn. He just could not recover and his grade point average took a huge hit. He is working this summer to help pay for a semester overseas, then he only has two more semesters with light loads. The whole experience was an opportunity for all of us to learn a lot. I understand totally about trying to keep the mouth shut. It is not something I tend to do very well. It is so hard to see them struggling and even failing at something you both have worked so hard to attain for so many years. There is also the monetary part of the equation. He/we will now have debt that we had hoped would not be there. I hope all works out for you regarding the scholarship.
  6. Hi Swimmermom3, I have not been around the forum for awhile. It is nice to see a familiar name. Fun to hear that Sailor Dude is heading to Chile. Skywalker is home for the summer, then heading to France for a semester. Our gentlemen have grown so fast. Best of luck to Sailor Dude on his grad school quest. MtnTeaching
  7. We just received notice that my dd has been granted extended-time on the ACT. :hurray: It took exactly 14 days from the Friday I sent the packet US Postal Priority Mail. I just had to tell someone who would understand. DD attends a one-day-a-week public school enrichment program for homeschoolers. The head of the program told me, "Your chances of getting an ACT extended-time accommodation for your daughter is NIL." I asked if they had ever been successful in getting any student extended-time on the ACT. She said, "Never". DD's dyslexia diagnostician, along with the local high school's guidance counselor, both said that I would not be able to get accommodations unless I went though the school and entered her packet along with all the other public school students who have current 504s and IEPs (which dd does not have). The problem is--she is NOT a public school student. After allowing myself to fall into the trap of listening to them for a bit, I came to my senses. I carefully filled out all of the forms, wrote a two page letter describing the accommodations I had used for her since she came home in the third grade, included her old IEPs from K-2nd grade, her dyslexia evaluations from 5th grade and her new one from earlier this year, any other papers I could think of to show her need or to confirm the use of accommodations (like our original receipt from when we signed her up for the Recordings for the Blind and Dyslexic in the 6th grade), made her ACT test reservation date, and sent the packet in. This victory is just another reminder that we are the advocates for our children. I was actually listening to these people until the "your chances are nil" comment. It ticked me off and reminded me that I took on the job as her teacher and guidance counselor. These other people are just my supplemental help. This was my job, not their's. Now it is DD's job to make the most of the extra time she has been given.
  8. Does anyone know how to handle requesting accommodations (ACT) for more than one test date? I would like my daughter to take the test at least twice. Can I register her for two dates at the same time that I request accommodations?
  9. Hi EKS, It will not let me see the information unless I pay for a subscription. Could you give us the "gist" of what the it stated regarding taking tests before asking for accommodations?
  10. Was the whiteboard provided in the room already or did he hang it himself? If so, may I ask what he used to hang it with?
  11. The duffel bag idea is great! I was wondering where he was going to put his suitcase - duh. My ds is heading to a school about 6.5 hours from us. We have a big F-250 truck with a cover on the back, so we should will be able to fit his stuff in there. He will not be finding out who his roommate is until Aug. 1, so we will need to discuss the fridge, microwave, rug, and fan at that point.
  12. I am definitely following this thread. I am confused by my incoming freshman son's college restrictions on lofting and need to give them a call. On the dorm's Facebook page, a student asked if the beds could be lofted to different heights. The answer from an RA was "yes". But, when I look at the college website on the Residence page, it links me to a service that does the lofting for the school. The pictures show the lofts that are almost touching the ceiling. Good for getting a desk/chest of drawers/bike underneath, but bad for sitting on the bed (my son loves to read in bed). I am just not sure what ds is going to be dealing with, therefore what we need to buy for clothes storage. They do have a suggested "bring with you" list on the website that recommends the 3M Command hooks (they have all different sizes). Most of the rooms have hooks on the wall for bikes, but I am not sure how that works with a lofted bed. Ds' room is going to be minuscule. Smaller than what I had in the early 80's. I was hoping to get the "over the door" hooks for the closet door for a towel, jacket, robe, etc. Unfortunately, it looks as if there is no door on the tiny closet area. This is going to be interesting.
  13. We used homeschooldiploma . com. It is absolutely beautiful. They have several different wordings for the actual diploma. You can go with a very Christian theme, or a more secular, academic theme. I love that it has our homeschool name in a beautiful font. I picked the more academic wording that states that ds has completed the necessary requirements of our state and is signed by both my husband and me. The cover also has several different seals and colors you can choose from. You are able to make the diploma as fancy as you want (for an added fee, of course). The final personal touch was the ability to have a favorite quote, scripture, school motto, etc. Our school motto is "Never give up, never surrender!" from the movie Galaxy Quest. I put it in Latin on his diploma. Ds absolutely LOVED this!
  14. We did the same. It is absolutely beautiful. They have several different wordings for actual diploma. You can go with a very Christian theme, or a more secular, academic theme. I love that it has our homeschool name in a beautiful font. I picked the more academic wording that states that ds had completed the necessary requirements of our state and is signed by both my husband and me. The cover also has several different seals and colors you can choose from. You are able to make the diploma as fancy as you want (for an added fee, of course). The final personal touch was the ability to have a favorite quote, scripture, school motto, etc. Our school motto is "Never give up, never surrender!" from the movie Galaxy Quest. I put it in Latin on his diploma. Ds absolutely LOVED this!
  15. Dd will be in 11th grade this year. My plan for her has had to take a drastic turn since she was recently diagnosed with Lyme Disease. I am having to cut way back on the types of classes I was going to have her take to reduce her stress while she heals. She is also dyslexic which adds to the fun for her. 11th- Algebra 2- Public School Enrichment course with an excellent teacher (TT) Lit/Comp 3 - Public School Enrichment course- I do not feel this class will be enough. They only work on 4 novels, some short stories, and some poetry for the whole year. I will work with her on a full MLA Research Paper probably for British History and want to add a Brave Writer class depending on how she feels. (We are also slowly working our way through the One Year Adventure Novel together for fun) History- 1st Semester - finishing World History (it was a challenge when she became sick). 2nd Semester - British History (if I can pull together a course for her) Biology with Labs (this also fell apart when she became sick this year, so we are going to try again next year) American Sign Language 3 - Landry Academy online Continuing to prep for the ACT or SAT Electives- Advanced Photoshop & Graphic Design - 1 semester (Landry Academy online) Musical Theater (Public School Enrichment Class) Year-long meeting one day a week. Technical Theater (Same) P.E. (Same - We may have to talk to them about this class if it is too much for Dd. She has already had to stop Competitive Volleyball) Piano
  16. We enjoyed Oak Meadow for World History. I bought the syllabus and Teacher's guide for the syllabus through Oak Meadow and bought the textbook used through Amazon to save money. It is laid out for you with questions for each assignment and additional projects to choose from. I used this for both of my children at separate times. You can take a look at sample assignments by following the link. I added videos from Discovery Education Streaming Plus (we have used this for years for several different courses, such as, sciences, history, literature, and exploring interests - it is not cheap but you can get a free trial for the summer right now through the Homeschool Buyers Co-op to see if it is something she would like). I added a study of the world's major religions. I also added an Art History portion, but that is definitely not necessary. I also tied their literature study for the year to their World History (My Dd did an online class for literature with the Center for Lit, but if you want to save money - you might want to look at Lightning Lit or something like Windows to the World or Excellence in Literature. If she has not had world geography and you do not intend to make that a separate course during her high school years, you might want to consider adding some component of this to her World History class. A fun, easy and different way to do this is to use Visualize World Geography. It is not intensive, but of she has not had a World Geography component yet, it gets the job done with just a little addition each day. Good luck! It sounds as if your stepdaughter is going to be very busy.
  17. I want to thank everyone for their support and information. I have been heads down doing what homeschool parents do best - researching. I think I have sufficiently scared myself to death here. Lyme is a horrible epidemic in this country and the way our government (CDC), insurance, and most of the medical arenas are handling this is criminal. I am now understanding that this is going to be a long road for dd, but I am thankful that we at least have some answers. I am going to do whatever it takes to get her better. I cannot express how much I love this forum and the people here. You are all so supportive and ready to help with information and relating your own experiences. Thank you all from the bottom of my heart. (I will probably be PMing a few of you when I get my thoughts together.)
  18. We tried Breaking the Barrier (which Ds and I liked a lot, but just did not feel that it was quite enough) and 2 years of Rosetta Stone with a public school enrichment teacher (definitely missing the grammar component which is key - but it did help with his accent). Ds' breakthrough came when I signed him up for classes with The Potter's School and Mrs. Starosciak. He just finished three years with her and he is doing very well with his French (a final total of 5 years of French on his transcript). The outsourcing was huge for him. He will be starting college in the fall and has decided to major in International Business with a minor in French.
  19. Lisa I am so sorry to hear about your sick one. I am in the process of trying to wrap my head around my dd's diagnosis of Lyme. It answers a lot of questions, but raises a lot more. I spent the entire weekend reading and researching, and the outcome is that I am even more worried. I hope your young one heals quickly. It really is hard to see them feeling so bad. I just want dd to be back to her athletic, smiling, energetic self. Right now, the illness is making her a completely different person. It breaks my heart to see the young men and women dealing with this. Your thoughts are beautiful, timely, and they mean a lot to all of who are dealing with this right now. Thank you.
  20. I have sent a request to ALEKS to ask them some of my questions. The internet in the RV could be a concern, although I do believe we may have some way of connecting when stationary. I really think he needs some sort of "incentive" to keep moving along with the work. This does sound like a good option if it will work for us.
  21. He actually used the Lial's Beginning Algebra for 8th and really liked it's format. We are going to be in an RV most of the summer for my dh's sabbatical. This format might work better for him than something that requires online access. On the other hand, the online might keep him accountable. Ugg.
  22. Thank you so much for your recommendations on the documentation. I wrote all of that down throughout the years, but I do not have it in one concise document. I am very sorry to hear about your husband. From what I have read, it looks as if chronic Lyme can really play havoc on most of the systems in the body. I will be working hard over the summer to get the evaluation and to document her struggles up until now. She is looking at taking the ACT and I will contact them next week to see what they will need. She was going to start taking the tests first thing in the fall so that she could take it several times.
  23. 4 people with Lyme - that is a serious bummer! Dd had the initial symptoms in early March starting with the headaches, then the low grade fever, a terrible neck, shoulder, and upper back pain, joint pain, and the crazy fatigue. She turned into a totally different person. Gone was my athletic girl who would take on any boy in basketball. Gone was my energetic, grinning, joking girl. In her place was a pale, dark sunken-eyed girl who could barely get out of bed. Traditional doctors were absolutely useless. They did test for mono and Epstein Barr, but then they thought she had a sinus infection and gave her two different rounds of antibiotics that did nothing but mess her stomach up. I took her to an ENT who nixed the sinus infection diagnosis. Then to the Cancer hematologist to rule out the bad stuff. She had 19 vials of blood taken in one day. It took going to a doctor who is a full MD, but who also has her holistic license. She tested her for everything under the sun - and it came back Lyme positive. We have absolutely no idea how she got it. The CDC refuses to believe that someone in Colorado can get it. I have been researching like crazy, but we are just at the beginning of trying to figure this out. She is hoping that she will be able to take some antibiotics and will be all well. I am getting more and more concerned as I read about this diagnosis. I am just so broken-hearted for her. Thank you for your offer to help with info. I will PM you.
  24. It looks comprehensive. How did your Ds do these past two years? Did he like it? Did you like it?
  25. We have just received a diagnosis of Lyme disease for my 16 yo Dd. This is very tough for my 5'11" athlete. But, it also answers a lot of questions. When mono and Epstein Barr were ruled out, she even saw a cancer specialist due to her crazy blood results and symptoms. This winter, she had to stop playing competitive volleyball. Thank goodness she homeschools, because she would come home from her one-day-a-week public school enrichment classes and be crying from exhaustion and headaches. We are in the process of working with a Lyme Literate doctor to find the best course of action. Next year, she is determined to continue with her public school enrichment classes each week. She will have a few online classes, but not as many as last year. I will be working more one-on-one with her now that her brother has graduated and will be heading off to college. This will be her junior year. She is dyslexic and the SAT/ACT is going to be difficult for her, but she is determined to go to college. I am in the process of getting her evaluated again to hopefully give her a bit more time on the test. I have also read that a Lyme disease diagnosis may possibly allow for more time, as well. Has anyone else dealt with this in high school?
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