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About Jackie

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    Empress Bee

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  1. They have never asked me this; I assume it is a newer question. When DD started about four years ago, many of the teachers simply didn’t have much English fluency. She therefore started with her teachers speaking Spanish 98% of the time. They would sometimes use English when she was struggling with a word. Maybe because that is what we have always expected from them, that is still what her teachers do - full Spanish, and we know they speak English because DD sometimes goes “um, uh, darn it, well, a plant... how am I supposed to say plant?”
  2. We’ve used HSA for years, but at levels lower than high school. I also recommend scheduling with a variety of teachers and seeing who a particular kid clicks with. Some popular teachers didn’t work well for my daughter; some less popular teachers did. We like to keep one main teacher, and two or three in rotation as additional teachers. Therefore, my kid hears more than one speech pattern, talks to people with different interests (they chat a lot once they’ve covered the main lesson), and if a teacher leaves we don’t feel completely adrift. They’re very responsive to requests. In the four
  3. Wow, you can really tell the above was written pre-COVID, can’t you? We found a lovely private microschool, focused on Socratic discussion and hands-on work with a flexible attitude toward grade placement and class placement. It is amazing, but the week that we were going to put our deposit in was the week that everything started shutting down around here. DD continues to be homeschooled. All those lovely ideas for homeschooling? They’re not really accessible right now, either. We did do an arts-focused summer at home, and she discovered that she liked the idea much better in theory than
  4. Have you seen the Suppose the Wolf Were an Octopus books from RFWP? They have sets of questions to go along with a selection of books, and the books in each grade range are selected primarily by interest level. They’re my go-to when I’m get stuck or in a rut with discussing books. Each set of questions is divided into six categories based on Bloom’s Taxonomy, ranging from simple comprehension questions up to prompts to recreate parts of the story for yourself.
  5. I remember finally understanding that subtraction is just the adding of the opposite, and that division is simply multiplying by the reciprocal. That made all the rules make so much more sense to me! So, if I see something as simple as 9-7, my brain knows it can restate that as 9+(-7), and then it is easy to move things around because I know I can move the numbers around with addition. If it helps with the problem, I can now rearrange things to be -7+9, because that is still obviously valid in terms of the addition rules. I see division similarly. 12 divided by 3 is the same as 12 times 1
  6. I have actually used all or part of everything on your list. I may own too many math things. (Your proposed list, not your ruled out list.) Arbor Algebra - we only used part of the first book. It turned out not to be as good a fit for us as I hoped, but it could serve as a base Algebra program. This could be the program that you use as a core. It does not go *nearly* as deep as something like AOPS, but it’s much, much better than something like Saxon. HOE - great for learning to set up and work with basic equations. Doesn’t get deep enough into the more complex equations that Algebra
  7. My kid needs a lot of physical activity. I’m horribly lazy about it, so I’ve learned that this is an area that I need to actively schedule and/or outsource. Her physical activities currently include: - 4.5 hours one day per week at a wilderness/primitive skills class, held outdoors regardless of weather - 6-7 hours per week of classes at a parkour/aerials gym (that has a monthly fee that covers all classes, making it a bargain) - 2 hours per week of martial arts - 2 hours per week at homeschool hours at a skating rink - 1 hour per week of a Stage Combat class So,
  8. Neither AMC nor Math Kangaroo require teams. Math Olympiad has options for teams and individual; we found a local Math Circle that joined up with a tiny private school to offer it to anyone who didn’t otherwise have a space to take it. There are places where homeschool kids group together to form homeschool teams.
  9. Saxon really focuses on teaching procedures, but isn’t strong in teaching problem solving skills or concepts, so I would use the time to work on those. Problem solving skills could be learned with old Math Kangaroo tests. If she prefers a more lesson-based format, then Zaccaro’s Becoming a Problem Solving Genius might be a good introduction. Singapore Math’s Challenging Word Problems book could be a more typical school-y option. Some issues of MathMania from Highlights would also work. Concepts could be played with using something like Amazing Math Projects. If you just want re
  10. No. My child does choose to write in cursive over manuscript, but her manuscript is pretty much illegible and she doesn’t use it. I don’t care what format she writes in (manuscript, cursive, or typed), as long as she fulfills the actual assignment.
  11. Everything is completely up in the air right now, even more so than usual. We are exploring private school options for next year. It’s so weird to say that; DD has been homeschooled from the beginning, and I believed she always would be. If we do not find a satisfactory school option, we will likely do an extremely relaxed year, even more so than our usual. One idea that intrigued her was a completely arts-focused year. There are several theater groups and art classes around here. She could actually do Hoffman Piano. We could get a membership at our local makerspace and go to their meetup
  12. And the second recent essay was a prompt to write a descriptive essay about any place, including a fictional place. (ETA: I have no idea why it turned one sentence blue in the cut and paste. It isn't any different in the original document, and won't let me alter it here.) ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- In Hogsmeade, you can get nearly all your magical needs met. There are stores where you can get school supplies for Hogwarts, like Flourish and Blotts or Scrivenshafts. If you are not interested in school stuff and would rath
  13. Hi all! DD has always been resistant to any school-y type of writing, though she enjoyed writing fiction. She has surprised me with how well she is writing now that she is doing so willingly, and my plans for teaching seem like they may have been too basic and underestimated her. If anyone is willing to read through, I'm going to post two recent essays. I'd like advice on what to focus on next. Not necessarily curriculum to use (though I'm open to it), but more what specific things to work on. First essay, with an open prompt of "write about anything". This was meant as a baseline assignm
  14. I have no idea how it would compare time/cost-wise, but this is my daughter’s third year on a Destination Imagination team. While no category of problem is specific to robotics, this is her second year in a row solving some major part of the challenge using robotics, and her team has also done a good bit of non-robotic engineering, worked with a variety of tools, done some basic wiring, and random other stuff. It is always combined with some artistic pieces (creating backdrops, writing and performing a skit). Time commitment and costs are fairly low at the regional and state levels, though if
  15. There was a Facebook post from Beast Academy/AOPS folks a year or two ago. I’ll never be able to find it, as it was buried as a reply to a reply, but the gist was this: Beast Academy 5 and Prealgebra are very similar in content, differing mainly in style. The company was responding to a request to make a BA version of Prealgebra, and said they wouldn’t even know what to cover, since so much of Prealgebra was already covered in BA5. They recommend students still do Prealgebra after BA5 in order to have a gentler transition to the style of AOPS. As more evidence that BA5 and Prealgebra are
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