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Jenn in CA

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Everything posted by Jenn in CA

  1. Planning for next year.... my rising 10th grader needs grammar, that won't take more than once a week but covers all topics: POS, phrases, clauses, maybe diagramming. Punctuation & mechanics aren't necessary. Mainly I want her to become familiar w/the terminology; she is a good writer & uses good grammar, but knowing "what everything is called" would be helpful, esp for advancing in Latin/other languages. We used Easy Grammar (red? not sure what level this was) this year but didn't get very far, only about 1/3 thru the book, and it had waaaay too many exercises and they were too repetitive. But, some exercises are needed I think to retain the info.
  2. My 11yo is a very fast reader. She reads accurately, but she does miss things, and doesn't always recall well. She *loves* to read. Of course, telling her to slow down doesn't do anything. Should I be encouraging her to slow down, and if so, how? She doesn't mind re-reading the same books over and over, but it is hard to keep up with her pace and her tremendous need for new and more books. Maybe being a super-fast reader isn't a problem and I should be happy about it, I just thought I'd see if anyone had any thoughts. I consider myself a fast reader, but she seems to read twice as fast as me! I slow down for something difficult or that I really want to savor. She doesn't seem to savor, and nothing, to her, is difficult. Maybe there's an accurate reading-rate & accuracy test or something? I've done diebels fluency testing, and her oral reading rate is just soooo high, and she understands it all. I honestly don't know how she can move her mouth so quickly. 😮She does talk really fast & gets mumbly, we all have trouble understanding her at times. I posted in the LC forum because she has ADHD tendencies (based the limited reading I've done on it), and struggles w/spelling & recalling/remembering vocab esp proper nouns. It's like a working memory weakness combined w/the need to read (and do everything) super-fast. Hope this makes sense.
  3. Hmmm she had an evaluation with an audiologist about 4 yrs ago... she was borderline for an APD... he said to have her retested in 2 yrs but I never did. She’s never had a comprehensive hearing test, only a quick screening a few different times. I’ll definitely revisit that. she does struggle with phonemic awareness, is that an APD thing? I can’t remember. Today while doing a computer phonics program the computer said “hot” but she heard “pot” so she got it wrong. 😣 frustrating for her.
  4. Fair question. I'm using it because it's the best one I've found and she does get a lot out of it in the end, just that it's frustrating at times. I have printed the map questions in large font (modified my lesson and took out the answers) but we haven't gotten into a good flow of using it, and it also has its own little confusing visual things. Overall she is getting the idea of maps. At first (1-2 yrs ago) she definitely did not. But over time, she's gotten the idea of how they relate to the physical world. She's a pretty good reader, but she definitely could not read and follow the instructions of this material, or anything of this quality, on her own. It is a bummer to be neither an auditory nor a visual learner. 😞 She is good w/ piano, dance and sports where she can copy someone's movements almost exactly after watching once or twice, whereas I need to have it shown to me (and explained w/words) over and over! So we're opposites. It helps me to remember this.
  5. Yes, that is pretty much what is going on. That's a good way to put it. Not focused on thinking of the answer.
  6. Thank you everyone. Yes, breaking it down definitely helps. I guess today, this specific incident, I had already done all those things, the map was already out, etc... and she'd even answered a question already... it must have been an easy one that still didn't "prime the pump." But in general, those suggestions do help. It is frustrating when i am doing all I can to break down the instructions and she's still not with me. Perhaps today was glitchy. Waiting longer for an answer helps if she hasn't already said "What? Huh?" But at that point she is definitely lost and can't repeat what I just said. (I've noticed that if she's upstairs and I call her name, there is regularly a 1-3 sec delay before she answers, whereas the other kids answer pretty much instantly. That seems to me to be the slow processing speed. Anyone else's kid do this?) Would you guys say, then, this is not an attention thing? To me, attention issues mean mid-way through working, the student has lost focus and can't get it back. That doesn't seem to happen. It's mainly getting the attention in the first place. And it is the morning, maybe it is a protein thing.
  7. So, dd12 has been tested twice by two different public schools, and hasn't qualified either time for services. She struggles w/reading, spelling & language in general; she has very weak phonemic awareness/skills; low processing speed (14-16%); low working memory (14-16%). The area I'm mulling over/asking about today is the processing speed. She takes a long time to "jump start" her brain. The more often a task is repeated, the quicker it gets, which makes sense. But sometimes, if she's just "not feeling it" it can take sooooo long. Specifically, it's oral lessons, me teaching/asking questions. I say "get out your map of Italy and tell me what mountain range is on the Switzerland border." (And we've already been going for 5 minutes on a few other questions.) She is totally blank, as if I'm speaking Arabic. 5 minutes later after we walk thru "What country are we studying? Find Italy. Now find Switzerland. What's a mountain range look like? Can you find the name?" Meanwhile, her sister found is totally bored because she knew the answer right after I asked. Or maybe it's an attention thing. Her mind is definitely wandering, or who knows what it's doing, most of the time when I am talking or reading aloud. She does a lot better if she's reading it herself. But, the geography isn't set up that way. And, once her mind gets "on track" she's fine. The geography scenario above did not happen again that day. It's really just at the beginning of something. We do geography once a week, and at the end of the country unit, she'll know a lot of what we covered, so eventually it does stick. It just takes a few weeks. Help? anyone?
  8. 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?
  9. 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!
  10. 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.
  11. 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.
  12. 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.
  13. Time Left: 6 days and 9 hours

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    This is a lot of games. Everything is included, other than a random card or two that may have been lost. All the cards are already cut, lucky you! Gently used. Here's a link to more details of the games.


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  14. 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.
  15. 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. 😉
  16. 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!
  17. I tried but it’s gone from their website... I wondered if they’re discontinuing it.
  18. 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.
  19. 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....
  20. She does enjoy the COFAs and has read all the ones we own. Where do I find SKILL?
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