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mamato3 all-boy boys

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Everything posted by mamato3 all-boy boys

  1. My parents are wanting to gift my soon to be 16yo with a trip anywhere in the world with them! He is thinking of Israel/ Holy Land. So.......trying to search for a spring/ early summer 2015 trip to Israel for a teen + grandparents. We definitely want the Christian perspective, but not *just* a religious trip. I'd feel more safe if they were with a tour company the entire time. I've traveled internationally without a tour company, but I just would feel better knowing that their plans are all set from the moment they enter an airport until I pick them up. Ideally. Any recommendations?
  2. Debate -- and the skills necessary to engage in rhetorical events -- is taught systematically throughout the Challenge program. This is only our first year in Challenge, but it is a really well designed system. It is based on the 5 canons of rhetoric: invention, arrangement, style, memory, and delivery Challenge A - gives students the basic foundation of information for debating -- geography, basic science grammar and research skills Challenge B - students learn logic, research skills, and begin to formulate opinions and research about current events. Challenge 1 - students participate in two team policy debates, one at the end of each semester. Plus, they engage in other individual speaking events (some impromptu and others they plan) Challenge 2 - students engage in a team policy debate, Lincoln Douglas debate and several other rhetoric events for a total of six for the year. Plus, they review logic and work on elocution through reading and discussing American Drama. I'm not familiar with Challenge 3 and 4 (they are not at our campus), but I am impressed with the
  3. I found the HIG to be very valuable here, too. I used SM (US editions) with my son from K through 6th grade (we made it up to 5B). I loved algebra and like you mentioned, found the word problems to be much easier if done with algebraically than with the bar graphs. So, I needed the HIG to teach myself to think in the SM math way. Your son sounds a like like mine -- math was not something he was naturally inclined to enjoy, although he always seemed to understand the concepts fairly easily (but not intuitively) once explained to him. Unfortunately, he is a victim of The Guinea Pig Syndrome. He was my first to homeschool and I was anxious, excited and (perhaps) a bit too pushy. As much as I loved SM, it was not a good fit for us, and I finally felt mature enough as a homeschooler to drop it and change to something else. I do think it was beneficial for him and he has always done well understanding word problems (which I attribute to SM). There are lots of good things in the HIG and you'll find some nice math fact games and reviews to help your child(ren) along.
  4. I just received an email about Lee Binz's free webinar about high school transcripts. A little info: Webinar Registration Our online presentation will be held on: Monday, April 15th, 2013 12:00 - 1:00 PM Pacific Time Find your Time Zone Here Hawaii-Aleutian....10:00 AM Alaskan.................11:00 Pacific...................12:00 PM Mountain.............. 1:00 Central .................2:00 Eastern ................3:00 Atlantic.................4:00 you can access the link to register for it at: Spring Into Transcripts (https://www1.gotomeeting.com/register/173536432)
  5. It's important to remember with TOG (a curriculum I have used for the dialectic levels, UG and LG) that it was written by a homeschool mom with high school students on down. Marcia Somerville created it so she wouldn't go crazy (my words, not hers) homeschooling her houseful. The high school plan drives the pace, and the dialectic-on-down study topics at their level. This way, her whole family could be studying the same topic, engage in projects and activities and still have a robust education (and it is robust). I recommend TOG when your oldest student gets to the dialectic level, then siblings fall into the Grammar levels that are appropriate. I think that there are more enjoyable programs for just grammar level students -- we bailed on TOG when my oldest was in 1st grade for several reasons (many related to the fact that I had just had a baby) but returned to it when he was in 5th grade for our second tour through history. If your oldest is just a grammar student, stick with SOTW or MoH and follow along at that pace. Finally, MoH and SOTW are possible spines for the grammar level in TOG, but there are plenty of other books that are options for grammar. It is a buffet, and you have to pick and chose what you want to use in TOG; no one (including the authors of TOG) has done everything suggested.
  6. Like someone said, I think you make it what you want. With my two in foundations (2nd and 5th) for the first time next year, I plan on spending about 1/2 hr. a day working on memory work. My 5th grader will be in essentials, and he really does need to bone up on his writing and grammar this year, so I expect that will cover a good portion of our morning. Other than that, I'm going to make some quality literature read aloud decisions because that is something that we haven't done much of for the past few years. Now, for my Challenge B high school freshman, Challenge is his school work, so he will definitely have his week consumed by CC.
  7. I either liked her fb page or signed up for her mailings and heard about one and registered. She had another in February -- so I suspect she holds them regularly.
  8. Have you attended one of her free webinars? If not, that might give you a taste of record keeping and what is involved for high school. I attended on in January. It was helpful, but I'm not one to be nervous or worried about record keeping for high school. Our local support group had an admissions counselor from the local state university speak about high school transcripts and college admissions, so I knew I was headed in the right direction.
  9. The Old Schoolhouse just did a comprehensive review of nearly ever level of Essentials in Writing, except 2nd grade (I don't know why). I reviewed the 8th grade program, and I thought it was solid, but my son prefers IEW, so we'll stick with that. Here's a link the home page of the reviews: http://schoolhousereviewcrew.com/essentials-in-writing-review/ for a general introduction, but for all the linkys to the reviews themselves: TOS EiW review
  10. I thought I'd let you all know what I decided - hopefully this blesses someone else who is contemplating CC for high school . Thanks to those who responded on this thread and those who sent me private emails. I am so grateful for your willingness to share your decision making process and experiences. I really know that God is directing this path and I feel much peace about it. We've decided to go the Challenge B way. There are many, many cool things that the students at this level will be studying: mock trial, current events, and logic being among the highlights for this mama/teacher. Even my son thinks mock trial sounds cool! The learning skills that my son will acquire through these activities will be huge for him -- and can carryover into academic and life so well. And that, really, is what is making me take the Challenge B way. I sometimes feel like I'm a little hamster on a running wheel, leading my oldest through the motions of what has to get done to get through school, instead of seeking out the learning opportunities that can make a difference in who he is and how he views learning -- how he things and communicates and engages others. We have to take biology, then chemistry, then physics, then this...then that.... If we go out of sequence I'll be lopping off future possibilities for him, etc. One of our goals for homeschooling was to enjoy learning. That is something that we might have lost over the past year or two, because of my tunnel vision focus on doing the "right" classes to advance to more "right" classes. Because the science does not line up as welll as I had planned, DH, son and I came up with a plan to complete Physical Science this year strong and for high school credit. In Challenge B he will learn some great research and writing skills. We might start Biology next year on our own -- or not. Depends on how my son adapts to the workload. If/ when he takes Challenge 1, physical science concepts will be reviewed for him in class, and he'll take Biology or Chemistry next. I still hope to have him complete Biology, Chem, and Physics by the middle of his senior year in high school. Math was another are that isn't quite lining up for us. Ben will start MUS Algebra 1 in the next four weeks. I hope to find a super cheap edition of whatever Saxon level our campus uses, and Ben will follow along to review the concepts, but we'll continue through MUS up through pre-calc. I am sure the review and presentation of information the Saxon way will be beneficial for him. I have no doubt that my son will learn a ton in Challenge B. Will it all fit nicely on a transcript? Probably not-- but that is OK. It will work out somehow, and some college admission officer will hopefully see a young man who took a different path, learned much, gave much, and is worthy of studying at that institution.
  11. Angela or others, OK, have you known anyone who has chosen Challenge B for high school over Challenge 1? Have you known any students who came into Challenge 1 never having CC before? As I mentioned in my original post, we come from TOG, and my son is used to challenging reading and challenging discussions -- he's not used to as much writing as CC schedules, but that is OK -- it will be good for him, and is closer to what I expect for high school than not (although there is not WAY we wrote a paper every two weeks). Assuming a decent or better tutor, how did the child fare? I honestly have a decent expectation of CC (see my most recent post), and don't want to debate the quality of the tutors in this thread. :)
  12. From what I've read (and how I am approaching CC) the CC tutor is not meant to replace the parent/ teacher -- even at the high school level. I'm not expecting an expert in any of the six subjects that I'll be paying $1100 (less than $200 for each class, which is a bargain considering most online classes are $300-$400 a pop). In fact, the tutor is for the most part introducing weekly topics that the parents are going to have to continue the discussion/ teaching at home (except for the Literature; my friend who tutors Challenge 1 says the students read the selection then come to class to discuss what they've read). My husband and I just finished the first of several discussions about CC Challenge B vs. 1. I do think that the CC community here is really very good. I do know the Challenge 1 tutor, and know that she is very, very good. The director is also top-notch. Seems like we have a rule following group compared to some of the stories shared here. :) I appreciate the food for thought regarding the Challenge program.
  13. Thank you both for your comments. I really appreciate it. I'm still trying to wrap my brain around all this -- CC was not in My Plan for high school, but I am trying to be open minded and following God's lead for our family.
  14. We are considering CC for our family next yer. We have been happily using TOG for the past 4+ years, but I need a change -- and we all know how true it is: If mama ain't happy...... I think TOG has prepared my son for much of what is presented in Challenge I, but I do think that he will find the writing a challenge for him -- especially the frequency. I do think that the literature selections in Challenge I in general look pretty "easy" but after talking with the Challenge I tutor (and friend), I think what CC is doing with the literature is worthy of a 9th grade English credit. Since my oldest has never been in CC before, there is a part of me that wonders if we should just do Challenge B next year. In general, I think my son is a good student (not great, not gifted, but a good B+/A- student) who is ready for high school. I guess I am writing all this to ask if anyone with experience at the Challenge level can comment on the Challenge B vs 1 for high school 9th grade. What would need to be added to get to a high school level if we did B? BTW, we are already ahead of CC in science -- my son is about 1/2 way through physical science right in 8th grade.
  15. At the middle and high school levels, Tapestry of Grace uses the literary term "experiment in living" to talk about "A choice that a character makes to act and live according to particular beliefs." As the plot develops, of course, the reader has a front row seat to observer how this experiment worked out for him. Literature was never my thing in the first place so it doesn't surprise me that I don't recall this term from high school or college (let alone they were a long time ago!). But I just did a quick google search and only see the term in reference to TOG. This makes me wonder if the term is unique to TOG or if this is used outside of TOG by another name. Thanks to anyone who can help me.
  16. Although I do not live in Florida, my state contracts with Florida and has purchased (from what I can figure out) their middle school Spanish 1 class. I'm curious to know if anyone has used this. I'm hoping that using the course, in combination with some language learning that we'll do as a family will give my rising 8th grader a good foundation for high school Spanish.
  17. How often to you change the sheets in your house? I must admit, I'm not nearly as Fly Lady or Heloise as I'd like. So, please answer HONESTLY, and assuage some of my guilt. Cuz I cannot be the ONLY one. Oh, and don't could the "guest bed" if you have one.
  18. I definitely think that one math program is enough for a child. Unless they are literally begging for more. However, I do not think one math program is enough for a parent :001_smile:
  19. I live in a state where I have to do one or the other annually. I definitely appreciate a review by a teacher. I get to chose the teacher, and I have been working with the same one since first grade. She is a Christian (like me) and educated her children in a way similar to my goals with my kids. As a matter of fact, I've administered standardized tests to my kids a few times (getting into an every-other-year cycle), but I still spend the money to hire her for a portfolio review for my official state-mandated review. I like portfolio reviews for several reasons: it forces me to look outside of the day-to-day managing of my homeschool and see the big picture of progress that the kids have made. Truly, I've gone from frowns to smiles while putting the work together as I visually see progress! we must maintain a portfolio of work for the kids per state law. Putting the portfolio together for that and the review...well, it kills two birds with one stone. I appreciate the feedback I receive from my evaluator. it is encouraging and helpful when I've asked her about certain issues that have come up (slow reading progress, for example) If our state law changed and I didn't have to do this, I'd be happy as a clam! However, I might still arrange to meet with Sue annually just to glean insight, direction and encouragement from this BTDT mom, whom I admire. eta: I do glean information from the standardized tests {trust me, I over-analyze them because I'm very, very familiar with standardized assessments from my pre-homeschooling career}. But I find that it is more helpful for planning the next year to have an assessment with a teacher. I suppose a lot of my reasons for having a teacher evaluate me is because I have the highest esteem for the woman that I work with.
  20. And I have to add that this new law that is created is really a small-step in an attempt to re-gain more local control and parental control of education. In NH (where I live), as in many locations throughout the country, educational control is getting more and more removed from the cities and towns. We have state standards, federal standards (think NCLB), and now the Common Core. Control of educational content and direction and goals has been so far removed from the local school -- let alone the parents who pay the taxes and elect the school board and through proxy higher and fire superintendents. Bills had been introduced this past bi-annual legislative cycle for parental rights, reaffirming NH constitutional principles about education (which was *very* local at one point), getting rid of compulsory education , stripping some powers away from the Dept. of Education, etc. Oh, and the annual struggle to find a way to fund education (we have no state income or sales tax to fund education and distribute funds across the state). I think as homeschooling parents, many of can can understand and appreciate the centralization of educational control. I dare say I'm not the only one on this board who appreciates decreased regulation on homeschooling so that I can choose materials that best work for my family and our beliefs. That being said, I do believe that parents who use government school cede some control of educational choices to the principal and teacher. At the same time, I despise the double-speak in education that cries out longingly for " more parental involvement in education because it makes for better students (and test results)" yet does not want to engage in a discussion about educational content or allow parents to opt-out of (for example) sex ed., etc.
  21. Here's a link to an article about it: Parents Pull Son Out of School.
  22. I'll have to find the article about the situation in an affluent suburb of Manchester (Bedford I think) from which this piece of legislation arose. It had nothing to do with science, evolution or intelligent design. It was in an economics class.
  23. Laurie4b, I'm so glad you posted. Most of the posts on VT are all glowing. We are using a computer convergence program that the ophthalmologist recommended for my son. She found he actually had worse problems with convergence than I thought! I decided that for $75 for a computer program, it was worth trying before anything more costly. Although my son has recently become much more interested in reading (I'm not ready to say it is because we've done 3 -4 weeks of this program; I think he just discovered a great book that got him going!), he makes mistakes similar to your son's. So, I'm curious to know what your next step is/was. Have you found some tools or strategies to help him? Blessings,
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