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Laurel-in-CA

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Everything posted by Laurel-in-CA

  1. My 25yo BFA girl has learned that art is not a well-paying career, found a temporary alternative, and is working on a plan to improve her income, while still keeping up her student loan payments. It's been a really hard year for her and I am very proud of her not just acceptance of reality but devising a plan to get herself to a better place, dealing with roommate and job changes, and keeping her independence. Both of my other 20-somethings are working 2 jobs this summer, one because he loved his college job so much he just can't quite give it up, and one because she loves being needed and is senior lifeguard at the pool, plus she wants to pay off her car loan asap. These kids know the value of a $, so I guess all our [necessary] penny-pinching has paid a bonus in their lives. And my just-turned 15yo tested into community college classes this spring and will be starting there p/t in the fall (with art, her strongest subject). She also won 2nd place in the local National Arts Council contest and won $100, got asked to help (for pay) at a local art daycamp, and is going to be nannying for friends (for pay) for another week this summer. Between that and two camp weeks, I'll barely see her. I think the biggest advance, though, is the way she took charge of planning her study schedule and plotting out her assignments for the week. This is the VERY FIRST YEAR we finished math on schedule, and it was all her commitment.
  2. Thanks! The vocabulary book is similar to what I'm looking for. I already have something similar to EFTRU.
  3. Next year I am teaching a co-op class that covers test prep, study skills, and vocabulary. I am looking for a book that lists vocabulary NOT alphabetically but by discipline, so it would have geography words to know, science words, social studies words, etc. for high school or college level. I got what I thought would work (Words You Should Know in High School) and found it to be alphabetical. Doesn't help me. I wouldn't mind if it was lists only (w/o definitions) as I can do that bit myself. I'm looking for helping students find the roots/figure out/be prepared for terminology specific to different fields. All possibilities welcome!
  4. I think you have to make reservations to visit Muir Woods now. There's also Armstrong Redwoods, in Sonoma County (Guerneville is a fun town to browse the main street and a great ice cream place right before the edge of town towards the coast).
  5. We liked Novare -- did it in a co-op class. I have the textbook for sale -- $40 ppd -- if you're interested.
  6. I'd suggest this one. https://www.amazon.com/Classical-Mythology-More-Reader-Workbook/dp/0865165734/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1526663390&sr=8-1&keywords=classical+mythology+%26+more+a+reader+workbook
  7. At least in our troop, the girls split up responsibility for researching badge requirements and sharing with the group. Many of the teaching requirements are done on Class B all-troop meeting nights once/month. And then the leader may do things like schedule a speaker or a field trip. Our troop doesn't do much w/other troops because the closest is 2 hours' drive away, and this year there was no one to plan a multi-troop camporee. We did have another troop come out and do a badge with us and the pipas did a fair amount of the teaching.
  8. I heard there were over 3500 people there. I listened in for awhile and heard one person speak in support of the bill -- they were from Coalition for Responsible Home Education (CHRE).
  9. This bill died in committee! Over 3500 people were there to speak, 95% in opposition. Hurrah!
  10. One of the problematic bills has been withdrawn; the other has been amended but still sets up a commission (staffed by teacher representatives) to study homeschooling in CA and decide what additional regulations to recommend. We would like this bill to be withdrawn also, and will be speaking to the education committee and having a rally this coming Wed. (4/25) in Sacramento. Edited to add: The bill that wanted to require fire inspections has been amended but still includes data collection on homeschools and private schools, private school satellite programs, etc. in california. This puts our kids on the cradle-to-grave state information collection merry-go-round that is also part of common core and it singles out groups that have previously been left alone. With recent releases of what should be private data, many are concerned. We would like this bill dropped also.
  11. Totally agree. I have also seen this process in action. And the addition of "shows progress" testing -- at the beginning/end of each semester, done online at school....because accreditation.
  12. Like I said, we've used several different charters -- especially when my husband had multiple layoffs. I used much of the $ for art classes and bought materials that suited me. That works well for younger grades especially . For high school, it became more a case of which state-approved textbook will you use? With child #3 we were in a charter for high school because we needed a buffer...she met weekly with a teacher and turned in her work to her, was accountable to her, and took classes on campus 2 days/week. We didn't do an a-g diploma because that part of the program was all online and scheduling of its assignments took no account of scheduling for the same class from the regular class's syllabus. The teacher did work with us on electives (dd had a year of community service credit, garnered from her 4H leadership). The a-g english thing utterly stressed my daughter out, but another kid we know loved it. My kid is now being quite successful at community college where a-g is of no significant value. But with child #4 I am so very happy to have no hoops to jump through except my own.
  13. I've participated in several different charters in different parts of CA. A lot of the level of flexibility depends on the teacher you work with. And I have seen some charters where you have to sign a paper promising to use only non-sectarian materials. Over the years we were in charters, I saw a definite decline in freedom of choice, and *especially* for any high school level classes. So beware and ask lots of questions.
  14. The more letters the better. Let them know that other states have found much less burdensome solutions and that you consider CA's current private school/homeschool law a model. There is no need to change it. CA has better things to do with its money -- especially wildfire recovery and pension shortfalls. (JMHO there)
  15. Yes, I read that. I would be in Sac that day, protesting @ the education committee, BUT I am proctoring testing for our PSP...I get the squirmy 4th grade boys. I think it's outrageous overreach and trying to fix something that isn't broken. I heard the woman is outraged that she's gotten so many negative calls....and her conclusion is that we homeschoolers must have too much time on our hands (not that we're exercising our rights as citizens to dialog with our supposedly representative elected officials). I hope she reaps the whirlwind. But I doubt she's willing to listen to anything but negative stuff about people who aren't part of the teachers' union. The only hope is to overwhelm her with opposition.
  16. So, here in CA, where they are quoting discontented former homeschool students as authorities on homeschooling, the proposed solutions are: 1) Only allow credentialed teachers to homeschool or 2) Set up a committee of teachers and classroom schooling experts to decide on regulations for homeschoolers. Neither of those solutions is designed to support freedom of choice in education since the decision-makers/standard-setters will all be trained and operating within the classroom school mindset. I was bullied in private and public school, and under-served even in gifted programs. The schools my kids would have gone to were 70% ESL, so full of students struggling just to speak english, let alone develop fluency in reading/writing it. I truly believe the best choice was keeping my oldest (already reading) child home and allowing her to progress and become herself -- not a label (shy, snotty, smart, stuck up, or whatever). I've used charter schools -- that brought a mandated reporter into my home once/month and (at least at the beginning) still gave us freedom of choice to some extent. But the situation became more and more restrictive as charter schools were regulated into conformity with state education requirements and I have been glad to forego their assistance the past 8 years with my youngest -- who just tested into community college level classes at 14 (but who wouldn't be given credit for anything she's done if I tried to enroll her in public high school). I would be protesting with her at the state capital next week, except that I am doing something for my PSP -- a voluntary association for which I pay because I see its benefits (mostly social) for my child. When will the public school offer benefits without insisting on conformity and endless testing? NEVER, in my estimation. That's the way government money works in this state. I truly think that when the education establishment considers homeschoolers it's from the same perspective as the angry former homeschoolers -- what are they doing wrong that we have to fix? They don't seem to ask themselves what we've done right that they could learn from. Not once have I heard that kind of question. What I have heard is how much it will cost to get my child to school on the bus, pay her student fees, and dress her for PE and social conformity, and it's more than I'd pay for the customized education she's getting now. Sorry if this is a bit of a tangent. I'm really aggravated at the latest attempt by the state legislature to enforce educational conformity because, of course, that would solve all of their problems. If they did succeed in intimidating homeschoolers to returning their children to the classroom they'd have no place to put us and not enough staff to cover the students OR deal with the insistent parents used to advocating for their kids.
  17. It's not just the mandatory doctor (and who's going to pay for that) with its associated implication that this will identify abusers....only sometimes. And the questionnaires that are really so dumb....they have all the "right answers" (whether yes or no) in one column and the deplorable answers in the other column. More like an IQ test....or a PC awareness test, plus a fair amount of propaganda every year starting at age 10 about the gardasil shot and how necessary it was and how early it should be given. It's not just the yearly testing -- although that is a pain in the hind end and a huge additional expense even if administered online (which would not prove parents weren't abusing or neglecting their kids, as there's not verification of who's really taking that test). We've done state testing when we were in a charter and seen it go from once a year for 3 half days or so to adding in an online test that had to be done on campus 4 times a year to "demonstrate progress." Then there was the high school exit exam, another two days starting freshman year to give the students maximum change to pass. It's also the cradle to grave statistics that bother me, especially with recent scandals on data theft and misuse. I think it's a huge vulnerability that the education community is hiding from discussing.
  18. https://www.mindingthecampus.org/2018/04/the-stunning-overthrow-of-the-great-books/
  19. Our solution this coming year for world history will be Sonlight's Core 300, history only, as dd said she'd already had enough tours of ancient greece and rome, LOL.
  20. DH is of chinese heritage -- so his "beard" efforts are a bit useless (I know this is not true of all asians). My 20-something ds has both a beard and a man bun....says he has to enjoy his hair while he has it as baldness is on both sides of his family, LOL. He did shave beard and sides of head for his recent job interviews, but grew it back as soon as he landed a position. He looks good with it. But I really don't like the scruffy, haven't shaved in 3 days look. My almost 30yo nephew in Seattle, however, loves that look and keeps it that way all the time.
  21. I live in CA -- the most useful language to study here, hands down, is spanish. As an elementary student, dd did all of Latin for Children and Latin Alive 1; I think this will help her with romance languages generally; it certainly helped her with grammar and vocabulary. She will do her foreign language at the local community college and she is now wanting to take French because one of her friends is doing so and they could take it together. I had French in college, eons ago, and could probably help with some of it. Part of me wants to insist on Spanish and part of me wants her to be motivated. I am not sure I can find both things in the same foreign language. Suggestions? Comments? Feedback?
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