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FO4UR

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  1. Hello everyone! I'm back. Some of you will remember me as 4blessingmom. Some of you know I went through an ugly personal time for a bit, thus the name change and staying off the public forum for a while. Things have calmed down. I miss chatting about everything from toenail fungus to the societal implications of a history curriculum. No one else irl is this much fun. :lol: I'm decluttering too. We are no longer homeschooling, and I have all these books and currics that no one irl can appreciate. iykwim I need to rehome them somewhere they will be loved and used and cared for. Parting with them is sweet sorrow, made sweeter knowing they are going to someone who will be happy to use them. How are the kids doing? Oldest will be 15 at the end of this month. He is a freshman at a great high school, one of the best in our state. He is my severe dyslexic, and he is staying at level with his reading. :hurray: His writing...ugh...he still needs intensive tutoring with writing. He's doing great in school though. All that Miquon, Singapore, copywork, narration...yes, and yes. Oral narration saved his back-side, especially as he works with dyslexia accommodations at school. If you have a struggling reader-writer, increase your oral narrations. (I'm still throwing advice around like confetti. I can't help it. :laugh: ) 7th grader hates middle school. She got caught reading To Kill a Mockingbird in class. Her teacher just told her not to read it aloud to the other kids. :lol: 5th grader made a very smooth transition into public school. He makes me look like a wonderful HS mom. (Have another cookie...) Really, he is just a smart and sweet kid. My youngest is now 5. :crying: She is at an awesome preschool. I'm really very happy with what they are learning and how. She is my miracle baby who started life with an hypoxic event and brain damage, but she has not had one developmental delay. In fact, she is so very verbose that I wish I could filter. Her big siblings wish the same as she tattles on everything they say and do....sometimes to complete strangers. I am teaching music at a private school. I love it. I've been doing community theater. (I was in My Fair Lady as about 6 different 'extras,' I sang in the Latin Choir for Hunchback of Notre Dame, and I played Sally Simpson in The Who's Tommy. Those were all in 2017. I've made good friends in the theater. I'm thinking about future auditions. It's a blast!) I am pretty busy these days, but I am curious about how everyone here is doing. I hope to pop in from time to time.
  2. Mine HSed from the start, and just completed tgeir first year of ps. Honestly, ps was thrust upon on us because of divorce. If it were solely up to me, I would HS again. Positives: It was some stability with safe adults while I was dealing with legal crap and practical emergencies. They did cover some decent skills and content, and it was a departure from their norm and so held some interest. It was a venue for making friends after moving to a different town. Negatives: Some skills stagnated, and others backslid. Writing!!!! Across the board, I am disappointed with writing. Some of their friends have been a drain on them. (!!!) It isn't that i feel the need to shelter them from the world. It's that some of their friends treat them as peer counselors and they are burdened with problems that they are too young to carry and have no power to fix anyway. There was stress involved with LDs and the IEP. PS offers less by way of living content. I was pleasantly surprised there was some, but it is slim. Logistics. That sucks!!! The details of getting them there with all of the crap they need is draining. I have not made a final decision about next year, but ps is most probable. Academically and emotionally, it is not my first choice.
  3. Dancing Bears Happy Phonics No other LA seatwork except for pulling words from HP for spelling practice and/or copywork.
  4. I always did history, science, and literature (read alouds) together. Your older two are close in age. Doing them together makes sense. I used SOTW with activity guides for history. My favorite science years were spent using Delta Science in a Nutshell kits amd utilizing the library as we went, using science as a point for learning library and research skills as well. (very little planning) Quite frankly, with another child coming up and an ld like dyslexia at play, you need to consolidate your time. Also, your oldest will have to get used to working independently. That is part of homeschooling. It's the reality that is not displayed in the catalogues. But, that independence is the greatest strength of many homeschool students. It's not a bad thing. I would not recommend changing things to accommodate her desire to have you there at her side the whole time. If you decide to do things together, give her independent work outside of family lessons. Then...you have time to work on getting your dyslexic reading amd writing independently. That seems daunting when he is 9. This is where the lion's share of your extra time needs to be. Everything that came naturally to your daughter will need explicit instruction and repetitive practice for your son. We all do the best we can. No room for momma guilt in the schedule. ;)
  5. Occasionally review spelling rules. Copywork and dictation will be more productive than spelling lessons.
  6. Suzuki is a specialized philosophy of music ed. It begins with ear training and placement and love for the music. It is the perfect mix of delightful, gentle, and precise practice for little beginners. A good teacher will walk you through how to help at home the Suzuki way. That would be my first choice. Pianimals is an excellent series for young beginners at home. I used this. That said, i have a music degree and know how to teach the early basics, things not in any book...like hand shape and finger placement. If you have had good piano lessons, Pianimals might be an excellent option.
  7. Start at home and now before she teaches herself bad habits. Or, explain to a willing teacher that you simply want her to learn proper hand placement, fingering...how to cross over and under at the right spots, etc.. You have to not care about going through a book and learning to read music until she is a bit older. But I would take her as a student. Jmho. Suzuki is excellent. First choice if it's an option for you.
  8. Sweet!!! I wanna see her Minnie Mouse. Hahaha!!!!
  9. Sandpaper letters. Use them to teach sounds and formation as well as letter names. Play matching games, pairing capital and lower case letters. You do not need a curric for this, but if you have the $ now, go ahead and buy K level handwriting in the same font as the sandpaper letters amd use the same verbal cues to teach formation. Doing this early pays off big time down the road. The Pre-Primer in my link is in d'Nealian. I go through all the sandpaper letters before starting the wb. Cuisenaire Rods. Go ahead and buy Miquon too. Go through the play aspect until thoroughly exhausted, and start Orange whenever you feel he is ready. Some kids can zip through Orange at 4, some are not ready until 6. Either way, rod play will set the groundwork for understanding math. Splurge on books books books!!!!! FiAR is delightful if you want a guide, but just reading and allowing him space to explore the books is enough. Field guides. Binoculars. Magnifying glass. If you have the $, invest in nice ones. Take him out for long afternoons in a natural setting. Name birds, flowers, trees, etc...let him fall in love with a favorite nature spot. Art, music, poetry...invest in a rich atmosphere. That will yeild more results than curricula, esp for littles under 8.
  10. I don't think it is needed. MEP is complete and completely awesome. CWP lines up well with MEP 1, iirc. But, I would just stick with MEP unless your child is begging for more math problems. MEP has built in levels. Before adding anything else, make sure you are exhausting all MEP has for you.
  11. He doesn't need an art curriculum. When he is done with lessons and you need some free time to do something, he can have the pleasure of getting out his art supplies and "free ranging it." Dover coloring books are very nice. Spanish: if you speak Spanish, you could start teaching orally without lessons. If not, you could spend the year learning Spanish for yourself...while he's got his crayons out.
  12. There are mental/emotional survival habits at play. I have self-neglected to obtain hs currics and books too. I fought for those books. I sacrificed for those books. Like a primal early human would an animal, I hunted and caught and devoured those books. We live in a world NOW where we don't have to hunt or scavenge. But our minds have not caught up. Instinct drives us. I recently discarded every stitch of clothing from the old life and bought new. Totally frivolous from onlookers pov, I am sure. I had to do it though. I am not the old me, and I cannot wear her clothes. I went from owning very little clothing to more than I can store in my closet quickly. It was that instinctive drive, like when shopping for a layette for a new baby. One day I stopped. I have enough. I bought mostly thrift store and clearance,but still...and i bought some friggin' awesome trail running shoes because trail running is therapy to me. It wasn't a shopping high that I felt when I bought them. I was scared at first. Instinct tells me that taking care of me gets me hurt. Wearing them, running in them, and storing them in plain sight is strangely healing. That is the high. As far as taking help, when kids are involved it is sometimes the only way to hold the (abusive) father accountable to providing for his kids. It sucks, but the gov't has teeth I don't. That could be a whole different conversation. Anyway, I refuse shame over what I have to do to survive and thrive. Death is not my shepherd. (Psalm 49)
  13. FO4UR

    Pencil Grip

    Break off chalk and crayons into one inch nubs. The small size forces a tripod grasp. Hide all normal sized writing utensils for a while until he is used to that. When he goes to a normal pencil, I like stetro grips. But those are fussy to use with littles. Nubs are better for littles
  14. I have a 4yo who is starting some K level work. She is doing the Pre-Primer linked in my siggie for learning to read & write. Happy Phonics and sandpaper letters supplement. For math, I am starting her on MEP 1. We have Miquon. I will likely do a mix of both as desired or needed. She is funny with numbers. She may surprise me, and I will just go with her flow. Nature: weekly nature walks. Daily read aloud time.
  15. This sounds familiar to me. ;) I highly recommend doing Dancing Bears Reading at home instead of forcing readers right now. DB works wonders, especially for kids with visual processing quirks. Down the road, Apples and Pears Spelling is great too.
  16. Homeschool yourself. What are you going to do while waiting and driving? Fill the time with good mind food for YOU. Plan a fitness and nutrition plan for yourself. Plan a reading challenge for yourself. Start a new journal project. Learn a new hobby. This is a season. Dress for the 'weather' and enjoy it while it lasts. It will pass soon enough.
  17. The app for Starfall, and go ahead and purchase the subscription. It's $35 for a year. You can use the browser too, but the app makes it easy for a young child to tap the star and get going on her own.
  18. Thinking of my 4yo who is ready for kindy level work... Starfall.com will cover phonics, reading, math. It has a decent variety of games, stories, and lessons. And it's interactive. I could cover plenty of ground with just my phone and starfall.
  19. Happy Phonics. And have him close his eyes and spell the words aloud to earn his points after the games become easy.
  20. Miquon is a good choice. Buy extra cuisenaire rods, a ton of them. Let her play with them like any other building block. Dover coloring books. Get her the very detailed nature books, birds, mammals, fish, flowers, trees....etc...if you have the funds, buy her a whole collection of these and a pretty container for them. Simple, laminated field guide fold ups for your area. Store them close to the nature coloring books. Steadtler colored pencils. Picture books. You can never have too many quality picture books. Games. Happy Phonics is fun. Muggins Math games are excellent. Any and all logic and strategy games.
  21. Plain paper and crayons. Use Singapore Challenging Word Problems, and draw and color to show work. Draw pictures of the problem, but mostly...teach him how to draw bar models. Let him use those crayons.
  22. I strongly encourage you to read When Children Love to Learn, and choose your own books. Then make a rough daily/weekly schedule. Ex. History on m/w at 10am. Then at the given time, do a reading and narration. Place a sticky note where you leave off, and pick it up there when you come back. You do not need to schedule down to page numbers. Letting that go allows you to take the CM philosophy in its entirety, including choosing the best books for your children.
  23. I cut all ties with my mother. Aside from leaving an abusive spouse, it was the best decision I have ever made. Best. Ever. She still tries to cut through 3rd parties, but whatever.
  24. Back story: We homeschooled from the start until this school year. My younger children are easily earning A's. Phew! However, my oldest is my dyslexic, and he is struggling. Spelling has always been his biggest hurdle, and his writing at school is suffering because of that. He is undergoing a series of tests through the school to get an IEP in place. Meanwhile... If we were homeschooling, I would have him doing daily studied dictations, lots of copywork, plenty of oral narration, and daily written narrations (I don't care if it is spelled wrong. Write the words you are thinking.) He is not on board with a full LA schedule after a long day at school. He is 14yo, so if he isn't on board with this, it will not work even if I find a way to *make* him sit at the table. I am helping him by scribing some of his schoolwork, with the teachers' cooperation. I am seeing his oral composition skills backslide through the course of the year. (I would have him do DAILY oral work.) I suppose I am looking for advice on talking to a 14yo who needs afterschool tutoring from Mom, and tips on streamlining the work to fit into 30min per day.
  25. :grouphug: I had a screen name change, and have been taking a board break. It was too hard to be here. kwim. I homeschooled from the start, but put the kids in ps this fall. Divorce. Don't quote me please. I will probably come back and delete this post after several hours.
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