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About Xahm

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    Hive Mind Queen Bee
  • Birthday April 23

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  1. I think it sounds like you are doing a great job. My guess is that teaching speed reading in school was probably a trend that didn't really last, but I presume it comes up from time to time. Because of this thread, I've been thinking about it more. While painfully slow reading is something that should be remediated (and would be addressed by the things you are doing though your son isn't slow), I think that "normal reading" and "speed reading" are just different and mostly quirks of the individual. While my ability to read very quickly has helped me, my husband's normal reading speed hasn't hu
  2. I'm not going to claim that they had everything mastered, but I kept starting to tell them something, then they took over and explained the whole thing. I would start to describe one of the activities before we did it, and they would tell me exactly what was going to happen and why. If I had pressed on to the end of the book I would likely have found something new, but I just decided that learning by osmosis (I know I'm not using that word scientifically) was working, so I shouldn't do a whole bunch extra work myself for so little additional gain. That would be great. I'm going to be l
  3. We have been living book rather than textbook people so far, but I got myself excited about the idea of using a science textbook for my (significantly advanced) rising fourth grader. The advantages: 1. she could work more independently and I could use this to also help teach note taking, organization, etc and 2. She could gain an overview of science, hopefully pinpointing some areas of interest so that we could use middle school years following rabbit trails before starting more traditional courses in high school. Unfortunately, the textbook I picked up just depresses me. It was clearly writte
  4. I looked it up, and I believe it was Ultimate Speed Reader sold in the Excel @ high school package by Knowledge Adventure. The more I think about it, the more I'd suggest waiting until high school. The advantage of the software is that it can time the reading and gradually increase the speed. I wouldn't want to let my kids use it until they were already loving to read and had good habits, like pausing to contemplate, fully ingrained. It sounds like your son is doing fine. If you want him ready to read lots in high school, I'd concentrate on having him read lots and widely. Having a stron
  5. I'm not sure how to describe it except just know them? Haha, not helpful, I'm sure. When you are driving and you see a stop sign, you probably react to it without saying "stop" in your head, right? I'm trying to come up with better examples. When you see a tree, you can have the knowledge that is a tree without actually naming it. You also don't have to hold it as a picture in your mind. You can just know it in some way that is hard to explain. When I'm reading, I'm holding the ideas or knowledge of what I've read in my head, not the words exactly, and not really a picture either. Back when I
  6. The computer program my family had used a few different methods to improve actual reading speed. From what I remember, it would force you to read just slightly faster than was comfortable, trying to break people of "saying the words in their heads." It also used some form of highlighting that was intended to help you not have to move your eyes as much by increasing your use of peripheral vision while reading (again, if I recall correctly). For me, I already read fast enough that this didn't change much. All my life, though, I've been accused of skimming or scoffed at with "well, I like to enjo
  7. I'm curious what you mean by speed reading and what your goal is. I read very, very quickly, and many have called it "speed reading" and assumed I'm skimming or following some sort of scheme, but in reality, I just read quickly. Sometime when I was in high school my family got some set of educational cds that included one on speed reading and I practiced with it some, but very little and mostly just out of curiosity. If one of my children was interested, I might try to find something like that in high school, but in general I believe that the ability to read quickly comes from lots and lots of
  8. I got mine from AbeBooks.com at a good price.
  9. I'm so sorry! I could see that easily happening at our house and it would be so hard. If he doesn't looks about the party yet, is quickly make "other plans" that are super fun and can't be changed, then give her a present another day. I imagine it's harder on your son than the girl, but she probably feels conflicted as well. It's very possible she still values the friendship but also called her "girl time" and doesn't know how to balance them
  10. I am not an expert on this, but it appears the course you linked to has nothing to do with critical race theory. There are different kinds of critical theory, looking at all sorts of things. I agree with you that some parents probably would see this, be confused, think that critical race theory must be Marxist, and get upset. Those parents would be wrong, but that wouldn't make them less upset. I'm not at all concerned, and would be rather pleased, about school kids being well taught ideas from critical race theory. What I'm worried about is what they will be taught by confused teachers
  11. In Georgia, except for tiny areas in the north, we don't have the "brood" cicadas. Instead we have annual ones that are my traditional "now it's really hot" marker for summer. I think they come out from July to August, but they mostly hide up on the trees and aren't nearly so loud.
  12. I got a suit at Target this year that is a one piece zip-up. The top is like a short sleeve rash guard. I'm a smallish person who has nursed four kids in the last 9 years, and it provides plenty of support. It isn't skimpy in the rear, but not as covering as shorts. My current #1 criterion for swim suits is "could a flailing child make this come off me." This one isn't perfect, but it's pretty ok.
  13. You may want to look into Mosdos Press. I picked up a couple of levels, just the student books, and perused them, but I haven't done deep research in the company and don't plan to use the teacher's books or workbooks. They are actually printed in Israel, and when a work has certain phrases like "the Lord" it has "the L--d." My impression: the chosen texts are interesting, varied, and fairly challenging for the grade level they are intended for, but not ridiculously so. There is good information for the reader, so a student should gain a good understanding of literary techniques and impro
  14. About math circles: it's the kind of thing I may sign my kids up for, but it's hard for me to imagine what one actually is and does. I could research and probably will (this thread is reminding me that I checked pre-pandemic and a couple local universities run then, but for kids a little older than mine), but I think a lot of moms hear the term and assume it's either some kind of tutoring or else preparation for super-elite math competitions. That's if they even hear the term. I've only seen the local ones advertised/promoted one place (a page for resources for local gifted homeschoolers) and
  15. I've done this, too. I also learned to ask, "Do you enjoy the confidence that comes from following a plan set by an expert, or do you love to control the details and would be driven crazy being told what to do?" If they are the first kind, and they want advice, I'll listen to their description of their family and give them one or two suggestions, telling them that there are other good options they should look into if those first ones don't work. If they are the second kind, I encourage them to read a few different homeschooling philosophy books, like TWTM and something by Holt, and only then s
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