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  1. I understand your concern here, but remember that some kids need to see it a different way to really understand it. Just look at the number of parents here who are questioning their curriculum choices! I commend you for looking into after schooling this for your children. :) We are using BA as a supplement this year and it's a highlight for my kids. My math and non math kid both really enjoy it. I'm not worried about mastery with it; it's more of an exposure thing to me. But I can see they're picking up lots and we've just barely begun!
  2. I used to teach in a school that used that curriculum and switched the year after I was hired. There's a lot of great conceptual stuff there, but there's also a lot of room for children to miss the basics. As a staff, we really loved some of the units. The fractions unit in 3rd grade was wonderful. But, I really felt that we were missing many of our students. Now, my version of the program didn't look like that... This was a late 90's program and there were no student books. It was all teacher and manipulative based. Things may have changed in more recent editions. I would say that you'd be best looking at something that was procedurally based, like MM or even just the Kumon workbooks. From my experience with the program, they are likely missing algorithm understanding since there is a heavy emphasis on students discovering methods for that. MM is going to do a better job teaching the teacher than Kumon though. And Kumon is just going to remediate your algorithm issue and is not going to address other holes you might discover along the way.
  3. I used to subscribe for my classroom and thought they were great. I was 3-5 and thought Dig was better. I'd kind of forgotten about them and my kiddos would probably like them a lot now.
  4. He found himself often asking the same question, whether a student had gotten the problem right or wrong. He’d ask them to explain their answer or how they could check to see if they were right or wrong. “I became better at having a poker face so I wasn’t communicating whether they were right or wrong,†Wees laughed. When students asked questions because he was nearby, he deferred them to their peers, who often explained the math quite well. I like to do this to my kids, but it's funny how they always almost immediately start erasing. Like, if I'm asking, they must be wrong. Until reading this, I wasn't completely conscious of this. I think it may be one of those things that if we address it, I might have better outcomes. My kiddos are just little, but somewhere along the line, they've gotten to thinking that math is about always being right, and being right before your twin!
  5. I liked that SWB list too. We don't get all her categories each week, but we do get them on a more rotation basis. It's good to just have in your head. We recently just moved to a much more rural area. I haven't been to the "local" library here, but I still have the card for our old library, which we loved. We have to go back to town for things now and again and we work trips to the old library in. It's just such a great place to relax and enjoy. This week we went there and did our spelling and math and then read books for ours. :swoon It was a wonderful day! We don't do this on a regular basis, but we always enjoy the change of pace when we do.
  6. Yup, that's it. I like the hands off nature of the program, but I know there's a lady in our co-op that has used their testing services to look into learning disabilities. They offer lots of services, but I can really only speak to the most basic, "keeps you legal" homeschool service they offer.
  7. We homeschool under an umbrella- Sailaway. It's awesome- they do all of the state reporting and I get to pick all of the curriculum and whatnot. No testing. They're very hands off, which is what I wanted. Basically, I signed up with Sailaway and they took care of everything else. When the local school district hassled me slightly (related to a speech IEP from K), they took care of that too. All I do is keep track of attendance and grades in their online system. It's very easy-peasy.
  8. I saw the dvd at my library just this week. Might be worth checking into with your library. I remember seeing the mini series on PBS years ago and I enjoyed it. I'd want to preview it before committing to it with my kiddos though.
  9. I had this book of cooperative games that had some great ones, but my mind is blank right now! Here's the only one I can recall... A tag game the kids always liked was called good witch, bad witch, sandwich. Basically, it's a variation of spider in the web. The witch is in the middle and calls out one of 3 choices. If he/she calls good witch the other kids (who are split evenly between the two sides) take a step toward the middle. Bad witch means they take a step back. Sandwich they run across to the other side without being tagged. If they are tagged they become a helper witch. Last kid standing becomes the main witch for the next round.
  10. We are about an hour from Knoxville to the West / South. Madisonville-ish. We also drive into Knoxville for Thursday Connection and my kiddos love it! We are a secular family and find them to be very inclusive. Our umbrella is Sailaway and it's ridiculously easy through them. They offer support if you need it but otherwise don't require much. We've had the same issue with finding secular groups. It looks like there used to be a yahoo group that was active but it isn't any longer. It's spam filled gunk now. :( In general, it's a very religious area though, so I'm sure there's not quite as much interest in secular groups. Our taxes are SO cheap in the country. We were in Maryville before and they were at least double what we are paying now. Cost of living is significantly less than West Michigan (where we moved from 3 years ago).
  11. Yup... did this on our tub and surround for the foreclosure we bought. It was naaaaasty. I didn't even have to wait that long and it all wiped up easy peasy.
  12. Our friends were going to do something similar but decided not to at the last minute. They'd already sold almost everything too. I feel like they're going to regret not doing this. They already had the majority of the trip planned through. I would love to do something like this, especially right now with my kids. These are those memory building years where the root of their childhood takes hold. It would be lovely to have those shared experiences. I don't think this will ever be a reality for us though. :)
  13. I agree that it was always a conceptual third grade thing. Multiplication facts in third, division in fourth. Long division was usually introduced in fourth grade.
  14. I lost a bunch of weight and my sugar cravings. It's amazing how quickly things that aren't really sweet suddenly are! Hot sauce was so sweet to us! :) Like I said, our habits are terrible right now without a kitchen and we can't wait to do another w30. We felt fabulous afterwards and kept up the program in a modified way until our house sold and we moved in with the in laws.
  15. I'm looking to do another one here soon. We've essentially been camping at our new home without a kitchen and our food choices have been terrible! I can't wait until the renovation is done! Nom Nom Paleo has some great W30 meals too. We did a lot of sweet potato hash a la NomNom! Trader Joe's had a good ghee that was rather inexpensive. They also have a cashew butter that is w30 compliant, but I can't keep it in the house. Totally food without brakes for me. :) We also did a bunch of bone broth batches and would use that for a snack with some crunchy veggies. Homemade ranch with coconut milk for veggies was great too. I had never really used coconut milk before our w30, but I replace dairy with it all the time now!
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