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Everything posted by ElizabethB

  1. The best bang for your buck is the Black Book. You can do what is in the Panda books on your own with the Black Book, you will be able to categorize and teach by type of problem missed, the Panda books are just really convenient and already set up that way.
  2. Yes, like klmama said, it is in addition to, it explains and categorizes the answers to the ACT tests in the red book, but they do much a better job of it. For example, with the English, my daughter was scoring in the 26 to 27 range on English, and just reading the answers and explanations in the red book was not budging her score. The categorization in the Black Book showed that about half of the ones she missed were because of something they call "comma sandwiches," she read up about them, then did an open book test (Black Book ACT, comma sandwich section) with her missed questions from one ACT that were comma sandwiches, then closed book with another practice ACT comma sandwich missed questions. She also read their explanation about the why for the other few questions she missed, she got a 31 on her English section of the ACT. Their explanations for the other questions were more helpful than the red book explanations. It took about 1 hour of study total, she had already taken a few practice ACTs, and she did not take another practice test before the actual test, just studied for that hour. She also gained about 1 point in math from their tips, and about 1 - 2 points in math from the Panda book, we spent more time on math, she needed to improve that the most, the Panda book was most helpful to her in math, @klmama also linked it: For an English score in the mid 20s or below, the Panda English book would probably be most helpful. My son is not as strong in English as my daughter but is stronger than her in Science and Math, he is working through the Panda English book, that is the level of help he needs, and that is the level of help my daughter needed in math:
  3. I switched my daughter to Saxon, that was a good fit for her. My son just finished Algebra and I'm now looking for a good Geometry for him, I now own several, but not Jacobs or Jorgensen, I'll have to get those and see. My son is much more mathy.
  4. My blending page has ideas, how to start blending, then simple words and syllables and I See Sam readers, free online, linked from blending page. All are good for that age. Reading/blendingwords.html
  5. I found the Black Book that went along with the Red book much more helpful for fixing and understanding mistakes than anything else, my daughter's scores went up substantially after using that book, several points in English alone after just 1 hour of study because it pinpointed and categorized and fixed mistakes much better.
  6. Story of the World audio! RS4K books, very nice for that age. Student books for a variety of subjects All books shown for Biology: Her chemistry and physics for that age are especially good, there are other nice choices for the other science subjects for that age but none so cute and scientifically accurate for chemistry and physics.
  7. We have lived in a variety of states as homeschoolers. It depends on a variety of factors, but one of the most important seems to be the cost of private schools. For example, Illinois had more homeschoolers than I would have expected, but private schools were very expensive compared to cost of living. In Arkansas, there were a lot of homeschoolers but some military families that homeschooled in other states put their kids in private schools there because private schools are cheap there, especially for Christian schools if you are a member of the denomination associated with the school. I also know many people in the military who either started homeschooling in Hawaii or homeschooled just while they were there, private schools are very expensive in Hawaii.
  8. Some students figure out multi-syllable words on their own, many need explicit instruction in this. My syllables program teaches how to divide them, and there is Webster's Speller with pre-divided syllables and schwa accent pattern organization, some students need to see and hear the schwa accent pattern that way before they can figure it out on their own. My syllables program also teaches how to use Webster: Reading/syllablesspellsu.html If he is still having trouble after that, there are several other good multi-syllable resources out there: the Megawords series, Marcia Henry's Words, and Sophris West Rewards.
  9. Test his phonemic awareness with the PAST: 2016.pdf You can repeat the question, but no hints or helps, part of the test if if they can determine the position of the sound in the word. Automatic is a correct answer within 2 seconds.
  10. Yes, brain full, totally worthless to keep working after that. With my group classes, I work for 25 to 30 min, then games for 10 minutes, then a short break, then back to work. There is a point at which several of the students are no longer accepting info into their brain. When I teach several lessons over 1 1/2 to 2 hours, I have to add in longer breaks and breaks with snacks and running around.
  11. And, there is also a difference between boys and girls even along the normal spectrum. My son needed a lot more phonics repetition, my daughter needed more math repetition. I was tutoring a 4th grade girl with some underlying issues at the same time my son was in the 4th grade. I got her to grade level and then was working on some more advanced stuff, similar but different word endings. The book I was using had one type, then the other, then mixed practice. My son needed all increments, she blew on to the final level with no trouble. When I tried to go to the final level with him, it was not good, I had to go back. When I told her about that, she was so happy after struggling for years that she was finally advancing faster than someone!! (And someone with no underlying difficulties, just on one end of the repetition level.) My son now reads 300 WPM and is a few grades above grade level for reading. If I had only had my daughter and no remedial students, I would have worried about him, but he made slow but steady progress when young and just needed a lot of repetition. (My dyslexic students and students with speech/language problems present differently than he did.) It does sound like she has a longer than normal attention span, though, even for a girl of that age.
  12. I have a 5th grade student who freezes up and reverts to guessing when being timed, I wonder if the same or similar is going on or if it is just part of longer term guessing, my students who were motivated by the timing of the nonsense words were all 3rd grade and below or 4th and 5th grade refugee students who had only recently learned English. I will have to add strong notes about not adding in timing for some students and focusing on accuracy to the nonsense words documents. I did tell the mom of my 5th grade student to stop timing her nonsense words for a few months.
  13. My daughter studied for the ACT, not the SAT, but the same books should work. Both the ACT and SAT have their own weird grammar. The ACT has something called comma sandwiches, my daughter missed very few grammar questions but most of those she missed on the ACT practice tests were what the ACT black book calls "comma sandwiches." So, just reading that portion and then doing a few questions got her a 2 or 3 point improvement, just practicing would not have, a big improvement with just an hour or two of work. (The Black book identifies common areas of study/problem for each missed question.) A 2 to 3 point improvement on the ACT is in the hundreds for the SAT. You need the SAT black book: And the tests that go along with it, although they may be online: For math practice, the Panda books are organized by topic, so a very good way to get in practice problems in the areas that you think need more work. I got the ACT one but the SAT book should be as helpful:
  14. That is awesome!! It sounds like you both have worked very hard!!! I have a question about before and after MWIA scores, and I have new MWIAs if you haven't given one lately, you could give the MWIA 3 short: Reading/Resources/The MWIA Version 3 new.pdf What was her slowdown before and what is it now? I have had a ton of 3rd graders and younger and a few 4th and 5th graders go from 20 to over 30% slowdown to no slowdown at all, but students older than that have ended up at between 5 to 10% slowdown or I have moved and lost track of them. I would think sustained nonsense words would get students to no slowdown eventually, but would be interested to see her progression in this area. (I have also had a few middle school and older students who started out between 10 and 20% slowdown that have ended up with no slowdown.)
  15. 4H has short term summer exchange programs. We hosted a Korean boy and a Japanese girl for a summer program. They were good guests but it was a bit tiring for all the introverts in the family, and even the extrovert got a bit tired by the end! Of course, we tried to do more with them than if they had been here a whole year. They don't have a lot of outdoor activities and spaces available, they both lived in large cities, so they appreciated fairly cheap outdoor activities that our area has in abundance. We also drove to visit my parents and do big city activities, my mom is a huge extrovert so enjoyed doing things with them and planning things with and for them.
  16. Changing the habits is actually more work than teaching the phonics, but daily nonsense words help a lot. Here is an article I wrote on LinkedIn about how to build up the new reading habits:
  17. That is around normal for my remedial students, they CAN read phonetically when they slow down but have been trained to guess, and they guess more often when reading faster. My average student has a slowdown between 15 and 30%. For my students with a slowdown 30% or above, they really need to stop all outside reading for a month or two while remediating. A slowdown of 20%, it helps to limit or stop outside reading and will make progress faster but is not mandatory. I would work through my syllables lessons and work on over-learning the sounds in my chart, do the charts daily for a few weeks, then just the vowels. Reading/syllablesspellsu.html These charts daily, across and down: Reading/Resources/40LChartsCombined.pdf After a few weeks, you can probably just do the vowels. Then, after lesson 6, add in the vowel team charts, I am working on a video about which sounds you need to drill and how to do them, it should be out this week. Reading/Resources/OnePageVowelChart.pdf I would do daily nonsense words, either my game or the nonsense word homework from the syllables lessons. Phonics/concentrationgam.html The nonsense words help un-train the guessing habits and build new left to right sounding out habits, and the lessons help learn the phonics that have not been taught. For someone taught with balanced literacy, you have to both learn the skills and really work hard on changing the habits so that you can read fluently; you have to learn new habits while un-training the old ones.
  18. Most schools have Fountas and Pinnell readers, the system is based on sight words and whole language, each level adds a few more sight words. The repetitive nature of the readers and the use of guided reading only exacerbates the guessing problem. I have found that I can remediate inner city kids faster because they are exposed to less sight word drilling, and my fastest students to date were formerly homeless minority students who spent so little time in school they had no guessing habits to overcome. My middle class students take longer to un-train the guessing habits, but daily nonsense word work shortens the process. Here is the Fountas and Pinnell explanation of their leveled readers:
  19. The Leveled Literacy Intervention is just more whole word, not phonics let alone OG phonics. I have had a ton of remedial students who remediated quickly and had no underlying issues, they were just taught with sight words, balanced literacy, and leveled readers (the A-Z leveled reader system is based on sight words, not phonics) and then got LLI, just more of the same. All they needed was phonics and some nonsense words to un-train the guessing habits caused by sight words and multi-cueing teaching. Very few of my remedial students coming from the schools have had an underlying issue in addition to the problems caused by poor teaching, although a few have also had underlying speech or language problems or true dyslexia.
  20. You're welcome! Use version A now. The others are for later, but I actually have 20 pages worth of 25 word lists that you can use too, for practice and testing.
  21. I think Spelling Plus with the companion Spelling Dictation book would be easiest. What is her native language? I have some good resources for Spanish, German, French, and Russian that may help mom. Also, what is the age of the children? I have some spelling videos but there are different ones for different ages, some of the more complete ones are not really appropriate for anyone below 4th grade, but mom could watch.
  22. I would do Secondary since it seems to go to a higher level, but I have only seen samples. You might also consider Marcia Henry's words, the samples are from early on, it has multi-syllable words of Latin and Greek at the end and explains and separates by sound patterns of Language of Origin. I would also work through my syllables overview lesson and then lessons 6 - 10, that will get you a quick multi-syllable overview. Reading/syllablesspellsu.html
  23. Most of my students who come from schools who are behind in reading are behind from balanced literacy teaching and sight words and remediate quickly with my free syllables program and other free and cheap resources. If you give him the reading grade level test and either the MWIA 3 or MWIA 1 depending on his score on the reading grade level test. Also, give the nonsense word test. Students scoring at the 1st grade level or below on the 40L QST should take the MWIA 1 short. Students scoring above 1st grade level (a score of 1.1 or higher on the 40L QST) should take the MWIA version 3. The nonsense word test WPM scores compared to the MWIA scores give me an idea of what he is struggling with and how to fix it. The tests are linked at the end of my syllables page: Reading/syllablesspellsu.html For active children, you can do a lot of things to hold their interest. This video has some ideas: You can print out every word from Blend Phonics on a card and use them in a variety of games where you have to run somewhere to get each card before you sound it out. I use a subset of the Blend Phonics words in my syllables lessons.
  24. Names are like nonsense words! She can also work though my syllables program and do extra nonsense words to get better at reading unfamiliar words. Reading/syllablesspellsu.html That seems like a pretty bad fit as a job for a dyslexic person, though, I would encourage her to consider other career choices if possible. We used to live on a street named "DeChambeau" and almost no one could pronounce it, people would not even try!! "Do you still live on....?" [silence] I would quickly say,"Yes, we still live on DEE-SHOM-BOW, don't worry, no one can pronounce it, it's French." The pizza guy tried once, I praised him for his effort, he was kind of close. People asking always looked happy when I jumped in with the pronunciation quickly. With names, they are usually phonetic within their language of origin, so all French streets and names follow the French pronunciation rules. I cover the patterns for each language of origin in my syllables program linked above.
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