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About CAtoVA

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  1. My rising 11th grade son will study government next year as a semester class. I may have him do econ as a semester as well, but I may wait until 12th for that. Hillsdale College offers free online courses with one on the U.S. Constitution in particular: You also may want to look at the Great Courses for government topics. Your library may have several of them like my library does.
  2. I'm looking for some reviews of American Government curriculum, online classes, etc. My DS will be in 11th grade next year and history is his favorite topic; I'm hoping he also will like government. The course could be for a year or for a semester. Thanks!
  3. Was at a Kroger today and almost fell over because they had FLOUR! Like the section was almost 1/2 full and it was "regular" brands like Pillsbury. It's been WEEKS since I have seen that. This Kroger is near the university and the majority of customers normally would be students (not here now) and younger people. This was the Kroger that still had onions and potatoes but absolutely no chips or frozen pizza in March. My theory is that the younger people may not cook from scratch (need onions, fresh produce, etc) and favor easier food like frozen pizza. So, maybe they don't bake either. Was able to get one, three pack of yeast here but it was one of only three packages left. Plenty of spices, vanilla, etc. Also picked up four packages of chicken tenders and some grass fed steak and ground beef. There were about fifteen packages total of the chicken tenders, maybe ten packages of chicken drumsticks and three whole chickens in the case. That was it for chicken. There was plenty of beef but pork was spotty. Fresh fish had been missing for weeks but seems to be back now and in good variety.
  4. Mostly around here, unless the child is an AP high school student, the public schools are sending very little work and it will not be graded. The subjects are math and reading and the work takes about an hour to complete. Parents are being told everything will be repeated again in the fall anyway (!!) I think many parents are actually quite underwhelmed with the low quality and meager quantity of what they are getting. This is supposed to be a highly rated school system but they are dinosaurs when it comes to distance or non traditional learning, The kids are mostly spinning their wheels unless the parents find outside options for them. In contrast, my private school friends' kids are getting pretty much a full school day typically on Zoom and with book type work also. They seem happier with what they are getting. The kids all seem fine with homeschooling except for missing friends.
  5. Every time I have gone to Wegmans in the last 6 weeks they have been out of meat—I'm not sure what is going on with that.
  6. I heard about meat shortages two weeks ago and stocked up plenty then so I have ground beef, roasts, steak, chicken tenders, pork chops, etc in the freezer, and dozens of eggs in the fridge. Virginia. Whole Foods today was limiting customers to 95 inside. Workers get temperature checked and wear masks and gloves. Social distancing signs everywhere and one way aisles and stickers on the floor. I got inside without waiting in line but when I left about 15 minutes later there was a 12 person line. Many areas in the store with empty shelves including cereal and frozen food. It looked like about 30% of the store shelves were empty. Some vitamins like C and D were back but others (Zinc) empty. Produce/fruit looked full enough. I did not check the meat here. Almost no eggs for weeks. No flour. Signs everywhere limiting everything. Kroger supplies vary depending on when you go and which location. If you get there when the delivery truck gets there there is a lot of chicken and beef. By the end of the day the chicken case is totally empty. Frozen hamburgers are gone and fresh, grassfed organic beef (which I buy) is gone for weeks and then suddenly shows up again. There is grassfed bison and lamb available. No flour for weeks in any location except very pricey brands. Sometimes there are eggs and sometimes not. NO fresh Garlic heads at any location and no explanation for why. Workers are required to wear masks (gloves optional) and there are social distancing stickers on the floor. Stores are limiting customers but it's a lot (like 500+) so I have never had to wait. Walmart pretty much has had no beef for weeks now except a few packs of ground beef. Some chicken (breasts, etc.) No eggs for a few weeks but now eggs are back and limited. Produce seems fine. Dairy is sparse except there is plenty of cheese. Workers are required to wear masks and gloves. There are one way aisles. Definitely shortages due to far more people eating many more meals at home and also meat packing plants having problems. Not sure why there is so little flour anywhere.
  7. Open Tent Academy has one but registration for this session is closed. Oh, I just noticed that you are looking for next year. I don't know if they will be offering the class again but you could look into it.
  8. My son left a Blue Tent class this year partly because of the workshop model of writing "instruction" implemented. Huge waste of time for my son. Thank you very much for the honest, thorough feedback on the two teachers!
  9. I agree with holding on to it until you actually have the new version in your hands (if it's possible to do that) so you can see how much you may still need it. Have you checked homeschoolclassifieds or Ebay, etc., to see what you might get for the TWSS? It may not be worth it to sell it. I plan on using the new SWI Continuation B and C with my DD next year and beyond. I have the "old" SIIC B and SIIC C, and am trying to sell the DVDs now, but I am also holding onto my TWSS still. In the past, I have consulted it at times for additional support in teaching various units, so I may need to continue to do that.
  10. My DD finished Singapore 6 last month so we started MM 7 (Pre A). She's in 6th grade and moving quickly through MM 7 at least for now (we are starting Chapter 3 tomorrow). My plan is to start Algebra 1 when she finishes MM 7 and she would very much like that to be in the fall. We will work through the summer at least a few days a week so maybe we will finish in the fall. I have Beast Academy 5 for her to do alongside the MM 7 as well. My DS (10th grade) took two years for Algebra 1 (8th and 9th grade) because I wanted these foundational higher math concepts solid more than I wanted him accelerated and that has been a good path. If it takes my DD two years (or 1.5 years) for Algebra 1 that's fine with me even though she would say she wants to stay accelerated.
  11. My son has successfully used CLE Algebra 1 and finished last year with A's. It was a solid course with plenty of review built in. Now he is in 10th grade and we are using Thinkwell Geometry (asynchronous) online as a spine and filling in with Khan Academy and a typical high school Geometry textbook as necessary. This isn't ideal because my DS really needs the tight spiral of CLE (he had completed Saxon pre-Algebra before CLE Algebra 1). I really wish CLE would create a Geometry course. I was thinking about using Saxon Geometry this year but the reviews were not that good for the program. Professor Berger (Thinkwell) is engaging and personable and the lessons are clear, concise, and straightforward which is a plus for holding my son's focus. The only thing lacking is the obvious spiral review so I do end up usually having to reinforce lessons with extra practice. For Algebra 2, I'm thinking maybe Math U See (if they offer it), Saxon, or even a local homeschool course that meets in person twice a week. I'm not really sure yet. My DS found Algebra, in general, more interesting and easier than he is finding Geometry, so I think his focus in any Algebra 2 course will be better than it has been this year with Geometry.
  12. We used the LU's last year for Algebra 1 and I found them easy to use, actually. I think my DS really liked the "accomplishment" of finishing a light unit rather than having a textbook that seemed to go on forever. We didn't copy the problems on a separate paper—my DS just worked in each LU. We never really had to go back further than 1-2 LU's if my DS needed a refresher after a holiday or some time off. Our LU's had the number of the lesson where the topic was taught next to each topic so finding an earlier topic in another LU was very easy. I kept all the LU's while we were working through them but I didn't find keeping them a burden. Really, using the LU's was no problem for us.
  13. I was very excited about Blue Tent with all the great reviews from this website. Then I found out that the experienced teacher who had been reviewed, and had taught the course for years apparently, was not teaching it this year (!!) The instructor we do have is a new instructor—new to this class and maybe new to Blue Tent, I don't know. The kids think she looks like a teenager in her picture so also young enough not to have a lot of teaching experience in general. I won't say this has been a terrible experience, though, just light and/or disappointing in some areas. There are also too many "moving parts" that are starting to irritate my DS (and me, lol). For example, there are about 6-7 places he has to navigate back and forth to continuously all week with directions to "write" about this, then "answer these questions," then "respond" to at least two, sometimes four classmates, etc. He'll go to respond to classmates and sometimes there aren't comments to respond to, or the comments are, well, very difficult to respond intelligently to, or the comments are so repetitive that once he has responded to one student it's time-wasting to say the same thing again to someone else. I think the biggest structural issue hampering my DS's interest right now is that the class has a wide range of ages (grades 8-10) with far more kids on the lower end (13) and it is obvious in terms of experience and abilities to engage in literature themes, analysis, etc. He gets what he needs from my supplementing though.
  14. I'm doing the same thing for my DS's Blue Tent's Intro to Lit and Comp (grades 8-10). The lit "discussions" have pretty much totally been left up to the students with typically (uninspiring) results in my opinion. My main goal for this class for my DS was to increase his abilities to analyze and respond to quality literature. Consequently, I have him complete written supplementary questions and we have meaty discussions for each novel he reads (2 completed so far and starting the third now). The comp portion has also been light thus far but I'm not complaining (yet). DS writes well already and I think it may pick up as the class goes on. My one issue is when the instructor does assign a composition assignment it is along the lines of "write a story" with no support or mini lessons offered (except on mechanics such as punctuating dialogue). If you already write stories you know what to do, if not, the results are mediocre.
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