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Everything posted by Laurel-in-CA

  1. I had my first kid @ 36 and ended up with four. Waiting a couple of years or more should not torpedo family plans and it can make financial worries less of a concern. My sister is a teacher (elementary school) and she has had bad parent years and good/quiet parent years. She's also had difficult student years and less challenging years. So much has to do with how much support the administration offers, especially to student/new teachers. Sounds like a combo of horrible parents and no admin. backup....what were they doing yelling at a student teacher for things that were *school* policy? W
  2. I had my son read The Moon is a Harsh Mistress by Heinlein along with several other SF titles mentioned, some Zane Gray, The Ghost Map (about epidemics, non-fiction), and various Marrin biographies.
  3. ECLECTICALLY classical -- that's what I would call myself, anyway. Gives me the freedom to pick and choose and experiment and respect my kids' preferences. I remember when I was first investigating homeschooling and went to a presentation by an Abeka representative on teaching phonics...it was all about how daily drill was the answer to everything. I left that session determined NOT to homeschool like that and I've pretty much succeeded, LOL. OTOH, yes, structure does help us focus better, but wearing regular clothes vs. pjs seems to make no difference at all. The most I can manage lately
  4. That's exciting. I know with my artsy girl I was happy to find out that her art school cared less about some college requirements than other schools did. I think they're looking for passionate students, even if they are a bit over-focused on their art passion. Great news for your dd.
  5. I've been teaching at our co-op this year and last year. I taught a poetry class for 4th/5th graders....we had to do all our writing in class because parents didn't want the kids assigned any homework. That limited our teaching time, but it meant they got to share their work with each other. It turned out better than I thought it would. This year I'm teaching a high school class (all 7 students, one of whom has been rather unreliable; he lost his home in our firestorm and got a job so no criticism here) using Lightning Lit's Speech plus public speaking. I had at least one mom who was doubtful
  6. Oak Meadow uses the Holt Geography text, which usually covers each continent in 3 chapters -- physical, cultural, and present political. She's reading books like I Am Malala, Kisses for Katie, Lupita Manana, Cry the Beloved Country, and more. The syllabus has comprehension questions and a weekly project, and we have a book of daily devotions from World Vision that we read together, find the country in an atlas, talk about where is capital, what borders it, etc.
  7. We also used the Oak Meadow syllabus and recommended text book and have added readings (mostly biographies) of significant people in various countries from the Heart of Dakota and Sonlight Core F lists.
  8. I know my 21yo can't get a rental car while hers is in the shop because they won't rent a car to anyone under 25. This hit my then-20yo college student very hard when her car was totalled. Lower the rental age, I say!
  9. Totally agree. And I would add that something with a predictable assignment (like Explode the Code) can be a good way to help the kid start/build independence. Something transportable (like workbooks) can be equally practical if you have errands or appointments. All kinds of things shape the way we homeschool and the choices that will help succeed. The REAL challenge (I think) is if you have very different styles of learners and are trying to flex for all of them. Oy vey!
  10. I love that my kids have been able to explore inexpensively at the CC. Scholarship $ is squat for transfer students, though. We're fortunate we have a state U in town, so transfer is smooth and easy and they can live at home and save $$ as long as it has their desired major. But if they're going to go to CC in high school, they'd better be able to do the work. Those grades are forever.
  11. I'd agree...but I'd ask how they do their religious awards, as the format for these differ based on your church. I'd also ask if they do special catholic patches as a group (like Our Lady of Fatima), which might leave your dd feeling on the out. If these things were done individually or outside of regular troop time on a separate night, then I'd look for a mixed membership and hope for the best. I have a good friend who's the T/C for a mixed troop and they avoid conflicts by separating out anything that's for a specific denomination and doing it individually or on a different night.
  12. DH *****forgot***** to sign us up for the Flex Plan at work. I did not know this (he didn't realize it until this week either) and signed up for a course of chiropractic treatment that is pretty pricey for the first two months....confidently expecting that we had the $ in the FSA to pay for it. Also for all the prescriptions the kids and I take for various things, especially my insulin.....those run up to a significant amount every 3 mo. Now that we've already spent over $1500, come to find out there is no money there and it will have to be paid by us out of pocket after taxes. Booo! Hisss
  13. I have Keen hiking boots that I wear often around town....very, very comfortable and fairly light weight for hikers. Perhaps she can go have a try-on of various styles at an REI or other outdoor store? I also like the suggestion of paddock boots, which often have a zipper for easier on/off, but they may not be as roomy or have as much padding.
  14. We counted some of the stable time as PE -- shoveling, exercising horses, riding. The rest was community service. One of mine earned a presidential service medal from her many hours of stable service!
  15. I have one 20-something who's really struggling and she does complain, but she does not blame it on her family. Of course, maybe she does and I don't hear it because she's the one who lives on her own. And she is better now that she has a job she sees a future in. My other 20-somethings who live at home are busy finishing whatever level of college they're pursuing, making job decisions, looking forward to moving out and taking all my furniture with them. LOL I do get some of those "I'll never do that..." statements from my son, but he's the same one who calls me an "addict" for drinkin
  16. I was lucky enough to hear Gene Vieth talk about TWTM at a homeschool convention the year the first edition was published and came in search of these forums soon after. Probably around 2000? Not sure. This and the Sonlight boards have been my home away from home on the web, though I am more a reader than a poster. I only had 3 little kids when I started coming here....now I have 2 college grads, one in college and one in high school -- and I qualify for sr. citizen discounts most places. Hey, Kinsa, you're a spring chicken!
  17. I often make baby blankets for our local pregnancy care clinic. However, I just joined a group that is making yarn items for fire survivors in our area of CA. So, lots of scarves, hats, and needing a pattern to crochet wristwarmers/fingerless gloves. This goes along with lots of TV watching, unfortunately. Too bad you can't crochet and exercise at the same time!
  18. Andersen windows will last forever. We put in 2 big ones -- well, it counted as 5 because of the bay window w/2 side panels and another large window with a half-circle of glass above it. $11K. Ouch! If you go with Milgard brand/standard windows I think it will be less and they'll last 10-plus years w/o deteriorating. We have 3 more south-facing windows that we want to do but will hold off for awhile!!
  19. I now have 3 in that age group, but it's my oldest who has had the hardest row. Lots of challenges in her college years but she finished up her BFA....worked p/t at two different jobs for awhile and then got laid off....thought she had the perfect graphic design job and then got laid off in her probationary period. Dang. Took a customer service job with a ridiculous commute and hates it, has communication issues with boss (language barrier, unreasonable expectations) and is now going to work as a cashier lead for a thrift store giant. And she's happy to have the cashier job because it's close
  20. We were lucky enough to have the option of a nearby community college. I "fired" my son from homeschool @ 16, had him take the CHSPE (he had to pay for the 2nd time he took it as he hadn't left himself enough time for both sections of the test) and sat with him at his first counselor meeting at the CC. After that, he got dropped off at the CC by his dad on the way to work and took the bus home (brief tutorial, long walk when he got the wrong bus the second day). We bought the bus pass. He was only late once (his dad left him @ home) and not only survived but thrived at the CC, loved the outsid
  21. I so agree with this. I'm on my 4th child homeschooling and yes, it's hard work, and yes, every year the kids' needs, plans, and requirements change. We've had to use charter schools due to long-term unemployment and I've seen that movement grow more and more restrictive but I've also had the benefit of (with one kid) having the charter's IST as a buffer between my struggling/difficult child and myself. I've had an uncooperative child go early to community college - and step up to the new standard and meet/exceed its requirements as opposed to not being willing to work for me. I've had to lear
  22. We had a Rain Gutter Regatta with noodle boats for our AHG/TL Welcome Back. This Monday is our first troop meeting, although the older girls started early with CPR/First Aid training. My dd is the only Patriot (high schooler) in our troop but there are 6-8 jr. highers, which is a BIG change from last year when she was the only girl in the jr hi/high school unit! I am Troop Vice Coordinator, but if we have a Pathfinder unit I'll be taking that, too. So far, that's not happening and I'll have time to get the paperwork done @ meetings, which is great. We are supposed to have Family camp next
  23. I have a niece going to Merced. She likes it fine, is on a pre-med track (dermatology is her goal). But in her case proximity to home may have been a significant factor.
  24. My dd got a scholarship for her portfolio -- $5500/year, and they gave it to her for her extra semester, too. We had 3 kids @ home when she went to school, so she got a CalGrant, too. They host the National Portfolio Day in San Diego. I don't know about merit scholarship other than by portfolio evaluation -- dd had a B average and an low-average SAT, but that didn't seem to be a big consideration. She loved the school -- it backs up to a conservancy and they had their science classes there, town is very artsy with galleries and plein air paintings, etc.
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