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Jenn in CA

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About Jenn in CA

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  1. I'm looking for study guides for novels that would help my 6th graders with comprehension: * some vocab, but not too much * guidance in the important themes, plus help them figure out what was important that happened in the chapter [they're good at remembering interesting details, but not important ones] * no fun project ideas needed I feel like I could do a better job at helping my students with this, if I knew how to ask good questions and what to ask. I think going thru a study guide for a novel would help all of us. Ideally, I'd find a good series or publisher of study guides and could pick our novels based on what guides are available. Any ideas?
  2. I wonder, is there a (thin) book that spells out things such as “here are some good transition words”, “how to write a topic sentence”, “how to know if you’re staying in topic in your paragraph” and so forth? That is not even a curriculum? Also... does it seem like writers who write writing curriculum like to be verbose or conversational, because they like to write? 😂 this drives me nuts!
  3. Thanks Clear Creek, that's good feedback about WS Craftsman. And yes, the new Jensen's, I am not too crazy about all the added stuff. I remember looking at it back in the day and it looked so simple and straightforward. OK, one small thing I decided is really important to me for curriculum... if the book (student or teacher) is an inch thick paperback, Just... No. ) I want thin, and stays open. I detest that gigantic WWS book and the even-thicker teacher manual. Too wordy, too heavy, pages too cluttered. I have a homeschool bookstore nearby. I will go and peruse all these titles.
  4. Thanks Lori D for your detailed response. I like the looks of your suggestions. And MamaSprout, your experience is good to hear too. I like the outlining part of WWS. Because I started dd w/3, part of me is wondering if we should just go back to 1 and spend more time w/outlining. She is good at saying what she wants to say in complete sentences and with good grammar; she could use more instruction in structure, openings for paragraphs, and staying on topic in a paragraph. And a 5-par essay is just overwhelming. It would be nice to find a balance between throwing her in the deep end (which honestly is what I did w/my oldest 3, and they didn't exactly thank me for it) and aiming too low where the assignments are too easy. I haven't done any writing curricula to this point w/her, just daily, CM-style written narrations.
  5. Any suggestions for 9th grade writing curriculum? * Basic writing skills for expository writing (not necessarily creative writing) * Straightforward, easy to figure out each day what to do; maybe 20-30 min per day of work * Just writing; I already have grammar & lit covered I was looking at Wordsmith or Jensen's Format Writing... I can't tell if Wordsmith is solid on "academic" or expository writing, though, and Jensen's, I can't tell how much work per day it is. It seems like a lot. Maybe one of those would actually fit the bill though. We started w/WWS level 3, which seems a good fit difficulty-wise, but because my 9th grader hasn't done levels 1 or 2, it has been frustrating due to the references to "like you did last year". We could probably work around them, but I thought I'd try finding something different first. Thanks for any ideas! I find I'm not very familiar w/writing curricula.
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  7. Wow, MCT looks amazing! I never would have considered it if you hadn’t mentioned it so thank you! Were you suggesting to use the grammar book and the writing book (sentence, paragraph etc)? I could see my girls really responding to such a conversational grammar book that points to the beauty of language. I also like the levels; I don’t think they’d mind starting w/Level 1. Are there are lot of practice exercises for the writing books? I see a practice book, but it looks like it’s mainly for grammar.
  8. Thanks, @kbutton. I was looking at Winston Grammar too. I can see how that might be helpful. And I should look at Shirley too, as far as the jingles goes. Prepositional phrases seem like they’d be really hard for my girls to grasp... but you never know. And MCT I will take a look too. One thing I’m thinking is, that I don’t need to depend on one curriculum to do a great job... I can use a couple and hit topics/skills from different angles, perhaps? As long as I keep the workload appropriate? Peter Pan, thanks for reminding me about Linguisystems. If you think of that name let me know. 😉
  9. I've posted variations of this question before. I need help finding LA curriculum/materials for my two 6th graders. My wish list: *B/W, simple explanations like Teaching Textbooks *Very simple explanations, mottos/catchphrases that can be memorized or repeated to help remember things such as grammar/writing terms *Short teacher lesson w/written work to be done afterwards *Starts at the beginning, but can't be all one-syllable words or my kids complain that it's babyish *Like Barton-- breaks down material into teeny-tiny steps Now, my kids: Grammar/abstract ideas about language are proving very difficult both for me to communicate to them, and for them to understand. One is dyslexic w/other challenges, but does a little better w/concepts; it may take multiple experiences w/the material but eventually she gets the concept. (this one just finished testing for learning issues thru the school and I'm waiting for the report) The other one can read well, and zooms super-fast through her work but misses most key concepts/ideas, struggles w/vocab, gets "deer in the headlights" look and can shut down when faced with abstract ideas. (this one tests at grade level, and I have no idea what things to look for or whether to ask for testing) Ordinarily, my approach would be "pft, wait til they're older and they'll get it quickly" which is why we haven't done grammar til now. Well, now they're still not getting it quickly and I'm thinking it's time to dig in because it's going to take TIME for it all to sink in. Ordinarily, too, even though I'm a big grammar geek and actually appreciate verbals, gerunds etc, I haven't felt the need for grammar study as something which makes writing better... but child #1 struggles so much w/the *function* of words in sentences (that abstract layer that goes beyond the meaning of the sentence) that our ability to talk about how to write/fix her writing is stalling out; and child #2 isn't getting things such as why "If I were a dragon" is not a complete sentence. (It has a subject and verb, right?). I have no idea how to explain these things at a level they can understand. Help!
  10. I tried but it’s gone from their website... I wondered if they’re discontinuing it.
  11. Hello everyone. I feel lost in the curriculum world. Could someone direct me towards LA materials, specifically grammar and writing, that would be appropriate for a dyslexic student? -bite size chunks, lots of repetition -6th grader who needs to start at the beginning with grammar and writing but doesn’t want babyish material -predictable daily or weekly routine -support for learning new vocabulary (words such as nouns, verbs, paragraph are all sort of mind boggling)—maybe I need to do this separately? -pretty independent after an initial run-through of the instructions with me... she does not do well with a long oral lesson or discussion, but can read well enough to get through the rest if I go over directions She is good with beginning with capitals and ending with punctuation, otherwise everything else needs to be learned! I love the look of SWB’s Writing with skill but am not sure if outlining will be too difficult... I suppose it needs to be covered eventually tho.
  12. You're right, it will be more work. I was thinking the younger one would feel like "Why does she get to skip stuff I have to do" but you're right, she will have to do other stuff instead and maybe even more. Sigh. She went to Scottish Rite up til about 2 yrs ago. Since then, she's been reading fluently and enjoying it, and I've sort of gotten out of "disability" mode with this child. But middle school is coming up, and I'm reevaluating and wondering if it's time to get more serious or pointed with helping her. I do feel like I've been just trying random stuff for a long time, and I feel like I need a more specific plan of attack. Like SLP testing. How is that different from ed-psych testing? when she was much younger I suspected APD; audiologist report didn't show it. Then Scottish Rite did their own testing, sort of SLP-ish I guess because the lady she met with was a reading specialist and an SLP. Then the school district did more general testing. Woodcock-Johnson, and others. But again, their own version, leaving out some parts of the testing. I'm actually with a different charter than the one that did testing 2 yrs ago, and I could see if theirs is more thorough....
  13. She does enjoy the COFAs and has read all the ones we own. Where do I find SKILL?
  14. Thank you everyone. Super helpful. Thanks for reminding me about the Gander Pub materials. They look just right as far as curriculum goes. She had school testing (pretty comprehensive I suppose, took about 2 hrs) 2 yrs ago. The bottom line was that she didn't have any learning disorders so didn't qualify for services. 😞 She had a SLP "interview" after the testing; the SLP was so enthusiastically positive that this dd didn't have any issues that wouldn't work themselves out. Lowest areas were (percentiles): Picture vocab 9th processing speed 15th phoneme isolation 5th visual working mem'y, 23rd/27th comprehension 22nd spelling 2nd, sentence writing 7th .... However I suppose these low scores were balanced out w/stronger areas so overall she did not qualify. Would private testing be more comprehensive than school testing? I suppose it would. That's a good point about CM methods. Another issue is that I have 2 girls in the same grade. The struggling one is 11 and the other one is 10. The 10yo is right on target if not a little advanced verbally. They've always done the same schoolwork. Not sure how I would have them do different things, although if they did totally different materialss that would be better than "big sister has to do less work". Thanks again for pointing me in the direction of "narrative language" and giving me your ideas.
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