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Everything posted by hollyfell

  1. I don't really keep track of time spent but instead go by lessons. For my 5th grader, she works on Math Mammoth - 4 or 5 lessons depending on how long they are or if she struggles with them which takes about 2-3 hours a week Daily independent reading - minimum 1 hour but she usually does more Family Read Aloud - 30 mins or so each morning plus more at bedtime - mix of classic and contemporary kids lit, history, and science books History Odyssey - she works at her own pace - usually a few hours a week to do 2-4 lessons plus extra time for fun projects BFSU II - 1-2 times per month its usually about an hour discussion/demonstration/lab and then a writing/research assignment that takes her a few hours. Wrting with Skill level 1 - she was working on this about 45 mins per day 4 days/week but we are taking a break so she can focus on creative writing Lots of her own independent projects - last week she voluntarily wrote a book about all the greek gods with a picture, summary, and story about each one Weekly Poetry Tea - 30 minutes reading and listening to poetry - just started this and LOVE it Skating lessons Friday Coop for 4 hours Lots of chores including helping with our sheep and taking care of her flock of chickens, cleaning, & selling eggs Walks outside including some nature walks/journaling Lots of time to play Very little screen time
  2. My dd10 is doing grade 5 and has been working through WWS 1. She has completed about 2/3 of the book but is starting to complain bitterly about how much she hates it. She is a natural writer and I hate for her to have a negative opinion of writing generally. She complains she doesn't like writing about other writing - which is what school is all about BUT I also am not sure if that is the whole problem. I think maybe she doesn't like the incremental hand holding approach of WWS 1. I am tempted to have her take a break - maybe come back to it next year but I am wondering what other writing program might work better going forward. I like the way WWS teaches academic writing, note taking, and outlining but I'm not sure my daughter needs everything broken down so much. What else is out there? We've used MCT island and town but I wasn't thrilled with the writing samples in Town level. Maybe Voyage is different? I've been looking at bravewriter boomerang but not sure it's thorough enough though I like the literature tie in. Not thrilled about price either I need something that is mostly open and go - I don't have time for a lot of prep or coming up with my own plan. Thanks.
  3. Thanks. I haven't bought anything yet. She has done Soduku but you can only do so much of that. I will look into ken-ken -sounds fun. We also have lots of games. She's been beating me at set since she was 5 and also loves mastermind. I haven't played Dominion with her yet but I think she might like it. She loves Agricola. Settlers of Catan, and Ticket to Ride. We did try chess but she doesn't like to be aggressive so she doesn't enjoy it. I was hoping to do a more formal approach to logic with the fallacies and whatnot. Philosophy for kids is probably the closest thing to what I want I guess. We have done several of the lessons - thanks for the reminder to go back to them.
  4. My 10 year old is doing great this year but I wanted to add in some formal logic at least as a supplement. She really loved Logic Safari but they are too easy for her now. After poking around a bit, I ordered Building Thinking Skills book 2 per recommendation of WTM. I couldn't believe how simple it is. I looked through it and thought it would be much too easy for her and then we looked at it together and confirmed that the majority of the book will simply be a breeze for her and therefore a waste of time. I have a younger daughter who I will use it starting now in 2nd grade. So what should I look for next for my 10yo? Should I just start a formal program - which one? What about other challenging logic activity books? Any ideas?
  5. I have a copy of English Lessons Through Literature level one and plan to use it for 1st grade with my dd. Before picking that up, I had considered using WWE1. Would it be overkill to do both? My older dd just finished WWE3 and I think it has been a great program. She started in WWE2. Does anyone have experience with both ELTL and WWE?
  6. This might be above her reading level but we really enjoyed the audiobook of The Door in the Wall .
  7. I print off the end of chapter test and pre-test, then decide if I want to print the whole chapter or just part. I usually print one chapter at a time and then spend about 45 mins per day - however many pages that is.
  8. Thanks. I've never heard of math cirlces before - seems interesting. And yes, I don't necessariily want to accelerate too much but I also want her to be able to learn to appreciate and develop her own natural ability.
  9. My dd has always just understood math. It is effortless for her. I bought MM 1-6 because it was cheap and gets the job done but it's really not hard enough. I didn't push her ahead our first hs year (2nd grade) but instead let her cover the 2nd grade material in about 5 minutes a day,. 3rd grade, I pushed her more and the topics were slightly more challenging but still she is not really expanding/exploring her own talent. We finished grade 3 last week and are moving right into grade 4 but I'm really questioning what else I should be doing?? One problem is that while she seems to grasp math effortlessly, she has zero tolerance for frustration. If she is mildly confused by the instructions or doesn't understand something instantly, she flips outs, says she is stupid, and basically shuts down. It is hard to challenge her without frustrating her. Don't tell me BA because I already know she would love it but I can't afford it. I'm looking for a way to give her extra depth and still use MM for the basics without a lot of additional expense. I'm thinking my new strategy is that I will give her the test for each chapter to check her understanding and then only use extra practice problems if they are needed and hopefully get to a point that is actually a challenge. I also have Zaccaro Primary Grade Math Challenge but we're not in love with it plus it just doesn't have that much in it. I have looked at problemoids, Math Olympiads, Zaccaro's other books, but I can't make a decision. What would you recommend? Should I just see how fast I can get through the basics so we can start pre-algebra which honestly I think she could mostly do already but doesn't quite have all the tools due to lack of exposure.
  10. We use Building Foundations of Scientific Understanding. I am finishing the book up with my 3rd grader and have been reviewing some of the beginning lessons with my kinder. We also have been studying different biomes with an animal of the week. Over the winter, we did different arctic animals. Now we are starting different animals from the African Savannah. This fits in with BFSU but is also simple and fun for kinder. We also did a unit on the body.
  11. My 5.5 yo dd is about to finish ETC book 1. She seems to have gotten somewhat bored with the activities and has been fighting about doing it so I'm wondering if I should switch to something else? We do lots of reading together but I'd like her to have some kind of workbook to do too. Is there anything similar to ETC that might be more fun / more colorful/ more varied? She has a good grasp of CVC and is getting the hang of some blends CCVC and CVCC but still slowly sounds out each word. I have a tight budget which is part of why I like ETC. Any recommendations?
  12. Thanks for the link to that passport to the Middle Ages. I have to look at that more. It looks pretty cool!
  13. Yes, I used the activity guide for SOTW v. 1 this past year. I may end up using it again for Middle Ages but thought it would be fun to create my own curriculum to allow more freedom. I wasn't thrilled with the AG honestly and I'm planning to read SOTW but not as my main spine as I did for Ancients this past year. I'd like to spend a bit more time on non-western cultures and also group things together more by region and less by chronology like history odyssey does. I am hoping to put together my own resources to avoid spending $ on the activity guides.
  14. I am embarking on a project of creating my own history curriculum. I am planning to use UILE as my main spine with SOTW v.2 as a supplement along with lots of library books and projects along the way. As part of the process, I made a chart listing out the Usborne Encyclopedia of World History chapters with the corresponding chapter from SOTW v. 2 and also took a good guess at the corresponding chapter from History Odyssey (taken from the table of contents). Thought it might be useful. http://mistressofhollyfell.blogspot.com/?zx=8d196b3c1faae630 Has anyone else done something similar? Where did you begin? What resources do you suggest? So far, I started with the chart but now I want to break it down into lessons or at least larger units. Any ideas would be greatly appreciated.
  15. Have you considered your reasons for not liking science or science curriculum you've tried? I would ask myself what it is exactly that I dislike and then go from there? What Science programs have you tried? What didn't you like about each? What is you background in Science? What is it about Science that you dislike? Why? What are your goals for your kids learning Science? I would think that thinking through these questions would be really helpful to you to figure out where to go next.
  16. My kids are much younger but I heard about biblioplan for history which focuses on literature that goes along with Story of the world chapters. For Science, I don't know.
  17. BFSU is the first and may be the only Science curriculum we use and I love it. It is a bit of work but no really that bad. I looked through the chapters at the beginning of the year and created my own schedule of lessons but as others have said, there are plenty you can borrow online. About a week or two in advance of each lesson, I order the suggested books from the library so that I'll have them when it comes time to do the lesson. Before each lesson, i spend about half an hour or so reading through the lesson plan and making my own notes which I then use during the lesson. I find that the lessons often only take 15 minutes once or twice a week for each chapter and the kids are really getting it. We do the activities together which are always fun and then I usually have my 7 year old make a mini book or a notebook page describing what she has learned. I am not sciencey myself so I have been learning a lot. I like that it functions as a spine with a lot of leeway. One could easily supplement any of the lessons with further study or add in some fun science kits to go with it. I find that the material is always being reviewed as we live life so the kids are really remembering things. The other day, I heard my daughter (7) explaining to her cousin about how a yo-yo worked in terms of kinetic and potential energy. Very proud mom moment :).
  18. I just started homeschool (2nd grade) this past fall and we are working through SOTW Ancients but are not on track to finish until November (my dds 3rd grade year). I really like the trivium approach of studying history beginning to end three times and would have liked to catch up so we could finish all four volumes of SOTW by the end of 4th grade or close. We enjoy it so much that we have gone a bit slower and have also taken a few breaks so we are not catching up as I had hoped so far. I understand that each book of SOTW is 40 chapters. Here are the options I can think of: Cram to finish Ancients by the end of this year and start volume II in the fall and attempt to cram all three of the following volumes into two years pehaps by skipping some sections or combining? Continue at our pace, not on track and then skip modern history and start Ancients again when she is in 5th grade and get to Modern by 8th (theoretically we'll still be hs by then :) ) Some other option??? I also have a younger dd who will do Kindy next year so no formal history lessons other than working along with big sister as desired. What do you think? What have you done?
  19. I just started homeschooling my 2nd grader this year and we are using BFSU. We are working at about one lesson per week but I look forward to starting over and going much slower with my younger one next year for Kindy. It is a really great foundation in science (as the name imples :)) and is also quite open ended to add in other things or delve into a topic if desired. Also, the Let's read and find out science books are a great science resource.
  20. So I pulled my dd out of school after first grade where she had already had some phonics instruction and was reading above grade level. I have had her home for second grade and am just now wondering if I've done a disservice by not including phonics in our curriculum. I hadn't thought about it since she already knows how to read. When does phonics generally stop being useful and/or can be replaced by a spelling program? What have you used? My daughter loves to read and seems to be a pretty good speller without the formal instruction this year.
  21. My dd (7) is very good at math in my opinion. She has a very high level conceptual understanding and is good at mental math. We just started homechooling and use MM2A but it has started to be a daily fight and dd is saying she hates math. It is fairly easy for her and she only needs about 15-20 mins to complete 2-3 pages a day but she is not enjoying it. I want her to enjoy math and feel challenged without being overwhelmed. She says she wants more word problems and puzzles. She is also a perfectionist and can't stand when she doesn't understand things immediately. We have Primary Grade Challenge math, which she like OK but it isn't enough to be a main supplement. Any ideas. I'm considering ditching MM or at least supplementing it with something more interesting but looking for ideas. I looked at Miquon, Life of Fred, and Math for the Gifted Student and as well as Beast Academy. I honestly love the idea of Life of Fred but the it is expensive and I don't know if it is good as a standalone in which case I would have to also purchase something else. I can't spend a fortune so I'd like to get the right thing rather than spending a ton on lots of different items to see which she likes. I'm hoping I can narrow it down here.
  22. My daughter is 7 and just started hs this year. She would like a penpal. Please PM me if you have a child who might be interested. My dd loves to write, has just become a true bookworm, and loves anything arts/crafts. We are working on SOTW ancients, FLL 2, MM2A, and BFSU as well as starting the piano.
  23. I am just starting out homeschooling this year but I just yesterday did a comparison between SOTW and Usborne Internet Linked Enclycopedia. I like the format of SOTW and my dd loves it but I agree that there are some major gaps. The Celts being one of the most glaring. How can she skip the builders of Stonehenge? If you look in Usborne, there are more chapters on the Celts and also on the Americas and Japan. Also, some societies that I thought would have fit in with ancients, were actually not until AD 500 or so, like the Inca. They are covered in Usborne in the Medieval section. SOTW focuses more on Judeo-Christian history with a lot of stories related to the old testament. I plan to use Usborne as my primary spine and SOTW as a secondary spine, filling in the gaps and using a lot of extra reading from the library to help guard against bias. Another great resource I've found and am hoping to purchase is the Kingfisher atlas of world history which has really nice illustrated historical maps.
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