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Above The Rowan

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About Above The Rowan

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    Hive Mind Level 6 Worker: Scout Bee

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    Female
  • Location
    Northern ON, Canada

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  1. My 5th grader is working her way through Writing & Rhetoric, and it’s really lovely. Her writing has definitely benefited from it. She’s a strong writer naturally, so I feel like W&R is helping her polish her writing and find new ways to write more elegantly. We’re finishing Narrative 1 right now, and she and I both love it.
  2. Memoria Press isn’t secular, for sure. However, they do have their Charter site which is where I get most of my MP materials from and they seem to have done a good job of removing the religious content. I have not, however, used their Charter edition geography books yet but they’re on the plan for next year. The Geography 1 set (even from the Charter school line) still seems to have more religious stuff than I’d like - but levels 2 and 3 seem much better and look like they’ll be a solid geography curriculum (which we’ve not really ever done in a structured way because I could never find anything I liked). https://charter.memoriapress.com/curriculum/american-and-modern-studies/ Worth taking a peek - it might still be not secular enough but I thought I’d throw it out there.
  3. We’ve moved into mostly Memoria Press this year, and I think next year the plan is for my youngest to hop into a full core package for 6th grade. We’re secular homeschoolers so we’ll use Charter/Public versions of whatever we can, which actually looks to be available for most of the components in the core 6th grade. All the important subjects have a Charter version, anyway. I’m still debating whether I want to move her into MP’s Classical Composition, too, or leave her working on Writing & Rhetoric since she seems to like it well enough. It might be less tweaking to just get her to do what comes with the MP box - she’s a very talented young writer and will likely do well no matter which composition program we choose. We’re in the midst of shuffling her math around, and right now just working on strengthening some areas. I have no idea what we’ll use for math next year. I don’t want to use the Rod & Staff math that comes in the MP core curriculum. She’s a good student, but isn’t super passionate about math really. She will happily work on whatever I ask her to work on but I just haven’t decided which direction to go in.
  4. My 8th grader will be moving into the 8th grade core package from Memoria Press. We’re going to use Charter/Public School versions where possible, since we prefer more secular materials, but will otherwise be using the full core as is. He’ll have to do Latin and Composition at the level he’s at, of course, which right now looks to be Second Form Latin and an accelerated plan to do Classical Composition Chreia/Maxim and Refutation/Confirmation. He’ll do AoPS Algebra for math, I think. Though, the MP package comes with Prentice-Hall Algebra so we may give that a whirl. That’s my loose plan right now. Things may change, but we’re feeling good about it at the moment.
  5. I am really enjoying the MP stuff. I am definitely looking forward to a day when they have full core levels from their Charter/PS editions. I’m finding their products so easy to teach from, so clean in their layout, and I do really appreciate the fact that everything is really cohesive and works so well together yet can easily be mixed and matched to whatever level you need. I wish I’d done MP from The get-go, though I never thought it would work as we’re a secular homeschooling family. I’m really grateful now for the Charter School edition materials. Even my more ‘resistant’ older kiddo is doing the work as asked. I think this might end up being a really great year for us, after a REALLY rocky start to the year.
  6. Misses: Oak Meadow 6 was a total no-go for us. We enjoyed it at the start, but I just couldn’t manage all the project-based kind of work. It was also hard to bounce from my younger doing OM and my older doing BYL Level 8 (although the book selections are excellent and will be on my son’s free read list for the year, and he can work through it at his pace and leisure). We scrapped BYL8 for my older, and kept the booklist. Hits: We decided to move to mostly MP, using their Charter edition materials. So far we’re loving it. 7th grader is using: First Form Latin, Traditional Logic 1, Book of Ancient Greeks + Iliad + Odyssey, and working on Poetry For the Grammar Stage with his sister during our poetry teatime. We’ve got a few other bits we’re rolling in but the MP Charter products have been a really big win for us. My 5th grader is using MP also: Grammar School Latin, Famous Men of Rome, and Poetry for Grammar Stage. She’s doing Writing & Rhetoric (about to move into book 3 soon), some BW-style writing projects, and loads of reading. Biggest hit is just getting both kids doing more similar style of work. That’s made my job much easier. The older doesn’t want to work alongside his sister for much, but at least having them doing similar products makes things more streamlined. Everyone seems much happier about the new path we’re on.
  7. We have the TG and the Student Quest book for Aristotle Leads the Way. I think the TG was more expensive than it ended up being worth in the end. Though, if you feel you need the answer key to the Student Quest book, then you may find you want the TG. That is the only thing I ended up using it for, when I did use it. I found it very geared to a classroom or group learning environment. The Student book was fun, however. My son would just sort of pick from it when he wanted to dig in to a chapter a bit more. If he didn't feel like doing it, I didn't push it either. It made a nice "filler inner" to go with the text. We enjoyed the student quest book quite a lot.
  8. I was hoping to use UM Year 7 with my oldest this school year, but back when I was ready to start ordering resources and getting the plans down, Year 7 still wasn't released. So we opted for a year of BYL8 (my son loves science, so I thought this would be a nice year for him since BYL8 focuses on history of science) and I'm pretty glad we decided to go this way. I think I may move him into UM7 next year, but he wouldn't have been ready for it this year, I don't think. I'm hopeful that the authors of UM are able to get back at it soon. I'd love to see their schedules - but I do know that they've had some life stuff come up that has put the brakes on production for a while. I think, if I were ready to use it and the schedules weren't out yet, I would probably just use something like the A Delectable Education scheduling cards and slot in the titles from Ursa Minor. I saw the booklist for UM7 and thought it looked like an awful lot, but spread out over the terms I think it would actually be alright. I haven't sat down to figure out what that would look like, though, since we opted for another curric this year. I'm interested to see their recommendations for non-US families. I do remember seeing that they plan to offer alternatives to replace some things for those of us not living in the US. I LOVE the look of Ursa Minor, and when I saw their high school outline I practically begged my kids to keep homeschooling through high school (one of my kids is hoping to do an IB program at a local public school for his high school years, and I'm already sad about it and he's only in 7th grade lol).
  9. My oldest is starting BYL8 tomorrow. He's looking forward to it, but it will be a pretty full year by the looks of it. For the first week of school we are just doing BYL8,nothing added (except math) and no Morning Time yet. Just getting a feel for what the workload will be like for BYL8 first. Next week we have a 4-day week because of a science center outing, so that will be a "just BYL" week as well, as we see how it works out trying to do it in 4 days instead of 5. He wants to do as much of it independently as he can, but we will work together on the writing assignments (he is not a strong writer, but working on it) and obviously the dictation will be done with me. Mostly he just wants to go through each day's checklist and work until he's finished.
  10. I went through this. I told my primary care that while I understand her reasoning for not wanting me to keep taking lorazepam for night anxiety/insomnia, it's me who has to cope with zero sleep and anxiety through the roof (which is exacerbated by poor sleep in my case, so just a couple nights of low/no sleep can trigger really intense anxiety for a week or so). Our agreement was that the lorazepam (0.5 mg before bed) was working. And if, at any point, I felt like that low dose was no longer effective then I would wean off it and try something else. And that's what we did, ultimately. I used the 0.5 lorazepam for probably 2 years, with regular check-ins to keep my doctor posted as to how I was feeling about it. About six months ago, I noticed I was not sleeping as well, and the Ativan didn't feel like it was doing the trick anymore at that dosage - so, I went in to see my doctor and now we're pursuing other options. In the interim, I'm taking 5mg of zopiclone to sleep which we also don't wantme on long term, but I have kids to raise and a life to live and for me sleep is a huge priority. So, I'm taking this for now, while keeping our eye out for other treatment possibilities. I'm REALY sensitive to meds, so the lowest possible dose of anything usually works for me for a good long while.
  11. Other: They smell really pretty, and a nice scent or aroma in the home can help me calm down a bit. But I don't think they really do anything besides just smell nice.
  12. Troy: Fall of a City is on Netflix, and I binge watched it this weekend. It's got some sex scenes but nothing crazy. I've been really disappointed with any of the Ancient Greece films/shows I've watched but this one surprised me - it was pretty good.
  13. If I don't think it'll cause a major accident, I honk. Then again, I live in Ontario and it's zero tolerance here for ANY distracted driving. It used to be focused on 'texting', but has recently been changed to anything that is distracting the driver. So...GPS, opening a coffee, phone for any reason, all are treated the same way. My Mom's GPS unit (she has the one that you can suction cup to your windshield so it kind of sits on your dash) slipped and she grabbed it and was trying to get it to just sit on the dash til she could pull over to reattach it. She got pulled over and was given a (hefty) ticket for distracted driving. I feel like it might have been in the $500+ range, and she lost demerit points on her license. I have an uncle who is an officer for the Ontario Provincial Police, and we were chatting about this. I said "texting while driving" was a stupid charge - my kids are far more distracting to me when I'm driving than any device ever would be. He said you could technically get pulled over if a cop saw you hollering at your kids or passing them something or digging in a diaper bag for something or whatever. If it's taking your attention off the road, you can get ticketed. We've had police officers go on the city transit bus, and they'll watch drivers at red lights for phone use. If they see it, they have another officer in a car ready to pull them over. I've been literally run off the road (with a 4 month old in the backseat at the time) by a distracted driver. I have zero patience for people who can't drive responsibly.
  14. I'm in Ontario Canada. About 6 hrs drive north of Toronto. I grew on the east coast of Canada (Newfoundland).
  15. Mine's in my signature. I'm just dusting it off after a big long break (needed to refocus some priorities around here). I used to try to write more regularly, now I write when the inspiration strikes or if I come across something I really want to share.
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