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Everything posted by tj_610

  1. Wow, blast from the past to get an email about this thread! Short answer: Yes, DD used MFS with Bethany Barnosky for geometry, and went on to use her for algebra 2. I definitely recommend her! Long answer: DD homeschooled grades 4-10, math largely overseen by DW, who is math-strong (except geometry). We used Math Mammoth 5-7 in grades 5-7. DD used Derek Owens for algebra 1 in 8th grade, and did well. We switched to MFS with BB for geometry, because of my daughter's desire for a more interactive teacher and classroom experience, and DW's dislike of geometry. We liked Bethany enough to use her again for algebra 2. We now have some good data to be a little bit more objective regarding how effective all this approach was for DD's math readiness. DD is now enrolled in a small private Christian school for 11th grade. The school appeals to and attracts generally "above average" students. DD is taking precalculus there and doing VERY well. She says she thinks she is more prepared than most of her classmates (almost all of whom took their preceding math at this same good-quality school), and thinks a lot of the first few weeks were review from what she learned from MFS/BB (and my daughter is not the bragging sort). I asked DD about all this today, before replying to you. BB does assign a lot of homework problems, even though it's only half the problems in the textbook. But these aren't graded. So we parents still get to be involved and remember that we are homeschooling! After seeing how things were going and hearing DD's frustration with the amount of problems, we cut the number she did in half (every other odd or even; 1/4 of the total textbook problems), and the results were great. So you can adjust this to fit the needs of your kid. I was able to help with geometry when DD needed a little extra, but I wasn't needed for algebra 2. I will also commend Derek Owens, if it's a good fit for your kid. DS used him for geometry and precalc (he used VideoText for alg 1 and 2). DS is a math prodigy, and sailed through those. It suited his preference for streamlined quality teaching without needing a lot of help. DO is available by email, but BB is more interactive and available, by design. DS was clearly prepared well by DO; I can provide more details if wanted. But sometimes we don't give each other enough longer term feedback on these threads, and I just wanted to give an example of a kid who rocked it, and certainly wasn't made "math dumb" by homeschooling and using DO. For us, the decision for DO vs. BB was dependent on our kids' learning styles and preferences. Hop that helps!
  2. I thought this would be best place for this question, although DS doesn't have what most would consider "learning challenges". 18 yo DS homeschooled since 2013. 2E kid, highly gifted (IQ 150), autism mainly manifests as executive function issues (organization, time management, follow-through). ADHD mainly inattentive type though we are seeing more hyperactivity after 10 PM. Very little communication manifestations (though he can be hyper-literal). Manifestations didn't become noticeable until 10th grade, and have become more prevalent (whether due to worsening or due to life complexity, I don't know). On no medication. He's done extremely well academically and not too bad socially. He's been accepted to Georgia Tech early action (out of state); other decisions are pending. Earned his Eagle Scout last month (with no disability accommodations; he has never told his Troop or leaders about ASD). He doesn't like to share his diagnoses with others, and when it comes up, he's quick to point out that he's never received an "accommodation" for anything, including standardized and AP tests. This is true, though I counter that homeschooling is the ultimate "accommodation". DW and I clash over how to best help him with his sleep schedule, and I'd like some advice. He says he has a hard time settling down. His "default" is to sleep from about 1 AM to 10 AM. I think that's a the right amount of sleep, and I think it's usually quality sleep. I have studied a lot of sleep science and recommendations for avoiding screens and stimulants, relaxing environment, etc. (I'm a physician; not a sleep expert, but able to read and understand it). He really wants to go to college in the fall (math major), and we want to support him. He will do what he wants to do when he moves away. But how much should we do now to adjust his schedule? I'm only hoping for 11:30-8:30 sleep schedule. We've tried "carrots" and "sticks"; neither works for long. He insists that listening to classical music at bed time helps him relax, but then he hums Piano Guys songs all day long, so I don't know if he knows what "relax" means. We tried melatonin, but it made DS too groggy the next day. Alarm clocks don't work. He even used 15 alarms, one minute apart from each other. Didn't get him out of bed for good. In the short term, the concern is that his pattern disrupts the family (us 3, and 15 y.o. DD homeschooling). He makes some noise after we all go to bed. We can't do anything together in the mornings. His meal times are totally out of line with ours (important family moments are missed). He makes us late to church Sunday at 9 AM. We've settled lately for just leaving without him (he actually is bothered by this, and likes going). In the long term, I'm concerned he will poorly self-regulate in college, and get worse. Forget 8 AM classes; he might miss 10 or 11 AM classes. His odd meal schedule has resulted in mild weight loss this year, and I'm concerned he won't be healthy. I'd love to hear from anyone's experience, and what worked and didn't. I am leaning to using abrupt and forceful 8:30 wake-up measures until he gets tired enough to fall asleep earlier, even if it takes weeks. That is certainly what I'd do (and I wouldn't be posting here) if not for ASD/ADHD. Isn't that the heart of so much parenting of these teens? Is this autism, rebellious teenager, or both? Anyway, I don't think DW has the stomach for that. I've even told DS that going off to college is contingent on correcting this, with the alternative being a gap year to work on this (and other issues). I don't know what best works with ASD/ADHD, compared to neurotypicals.
  3. It's definitely different than when I applied. Last MIT stats I saw were even more discouraging for men; I assume due to skewed applicant pool but school's desire for gender balance, a man's acceptance rate was half that of a woman. It was around 6-7% for men, 13% for women. We're not too worried about it, and we're not going to try to make DS be someone he's not in order to possibly boost his chances. After much wrangling and prayer, here's where we've landed. We're very appreciative of the shared wisdom here. 1) I told DS to research colleges' and independent web sites to discover "best" places to launch him into math PhD/career (that's what he wants to do), and what it takes to be competitive there. He took me up on this with zeal. He understands it's very competitive, but he at least wants to aim for MIT, Carnegie-Mellon, CalTech (last one gives his mom palpitations due to distance). His ACT score this April and AoPS classes have inspired him. 2) I told him we would support that, and if he struggles next year, a B or two (which he's never gotten), would not be a disaster but would be received as God's direction. Math honors program at NC State is a wonderful option, and would get him into lots of graduate programs, if he does well. 3) He learned that a prestigious summer math camp may boost his odds. He can't do one this summer, so he'll plan that for 2018. We enrolled him in AoPS 2017 summer class for AMC 12 test prep, with that test another way to impress. 4) He'll take SAT subject tests, Math 2 and probably physics, next year. 5) After much counsel from older like-minded homeschool parents, and feedback from colleges, we're preferring AP to dual enrollment, for now, and prioritizing what he best likes. So presented for feedback, here's his 11th grade plan: - AP calculus BC (Potter's School; we decided AoPS absorbs him too much.) - AP physics 1 using edX Rice Univ free online; will see how he does with workload and decide if he can do this in 18 weeks and proceed to AP physics 2, or needs year for AP 1 only. - AP English (Potter's School; though not STEM, he's a strong reader and writer and takes rigorous English every year. This won't be that much extra than his norm. Might as well get college credit and credibility.) - German 2 (Excelsior online) - Notgrass US history. Really liked Cedarville dual enrollment option for this, but need to prioritize rigor in other subjects. - BSF Romans (2 hour class night + 3 hour weekly study = 1 credit) We thought some synchronous work was good for him to transition to college and be in some contact with others. The physics and history classes give us the option to flex/pause if needed so he can excel in the AP and German classes. He is willing to spend 2-3 evenings each week on school, something he's never had to do, and to start his day at 8 AM. The horror!
  4. Just to follow up, we are going to use the edX Ride University class. 1) It's free, including text! 2) Self-paced. 3) Video lectures that seem well done. 4) AP-specific prep. 5) Can customize to use as a year or combine with AP Physics 2; DS is stepping up rigor substantially for 11th grade due to his ambitions, and we're going to play it by ear; if he gets overwhelmed, we will slow it down and let him do AP Physics C in 12th if he loves physics (he's taking calculus BC in 11th). Three of his other classes are online and will not have much flexibility. 6) It's free! (except AP test costs).
  5. Elladarcy, we may actually go that route. Free textbook, free class, self-paced. Looks like they have AP physics 2 in 3 separate 6-week courses, too. Thank you!
  6. For variety of reasons, we've yet to land firmly on ds 11th grade schedule for 2017-18. Who has used The Potter's School for AP classes? If you don't mind, please share: 1) What class(es) you dc(s) took; 2) Year of class; 3) Teacher name; 4) Score on AP test. We're most interested in AP calc BC and AP English, but all experiences welcome. We thought we were set for AoPS calculus next year, but class night conflicts with ds' Boy Scouts. He pleaded to do it anyway and read transcript later; mean parents said no. :-( Thank you!
  7. rjand4more, I recommend you and DD thoroughly investigate admissions requirements for a wide range of potential colleges. It would be very unusual to enter as an aspiring biology major without taking a high school chemistry year. Some colleges just specify "3 units science, inc. 1 of bio and 1 of 'physical' science" (which doesn't mandate it be chemistry or physics; geology qualifies). But some do specify a year of chemistry. I'd hate for your DD to find out she needs to cram in chemistry in summer after 11th or in 12th grade. One really cannot go very far in biology if one doesn't grasp chemistry basics. It does help separate "biology is fun" from "I want a career in this" for kids. Don't mean to be judgy; you probably already plan on chemistry in addition to those great electives. Just speaking as a long-ago biology major with a dd14 who thinks she loves biology but chemistry awaits. :-)
  8. anmom, check these resources out. Printable pdf's. Quick, simple and almost fun way to assess your DS' readiness. 6th grade skills review - if these are too easy, move on to the next link: http://www.livingston.k12.ky.us/userfiles/87/my%20files/0%20math%20minute%206.pdf?id=8196 7th grade skills review - if no real struggles, he may be ready for algebra: http://teachers.d11.org/teachers/taylodr/jsaamathplc/Shared%20Documents/Math%20Minutes%20-%207th%20Grade.pdf
  9. Irene Lynn, thanks much. That's a helpful post. DS is "a bright, motivated kid who has a physics type of mind". I really just want him to enjoy a 1st high school physics course without being over-taxed (I've sought counsel on this in other threads). I don't even plan for him to take AP Physics 1 or 2 tests afterwards. He aspires to take AP physics with calculus in 12th grade, so I just want to prepare him well enough for that. The College Board and independent sources advise against doing "all the AP physics courses"; i.e., don't take 1 and 2 if you intend to take any with calculus. 8FillTheHeart - thank you for that recommendation. You've been a help to me in this and other threads lately!
  10. Hilarious! My DS is 16; maybe we can arrange a marriage in 10 years. They would get along swimmingly. I can't remember the context, but I remember my professor in a course on Aristotle telling us that the only necessary rule of any system of mathematics is that it be internally consistent. I don't know why, but it's the only thing I recall from the whole class LOL. Many mathematicians would probably revolt at such a relativistic view of "the purest science". :-)
  11. anmom, is Saxon 1/2 pre-algebra? YMMV but we are very glad DD jumped right into algebra after MM7.
  12. Mathematical thunder from down under LOL. Simple and clear. But it doesn't really explain WHY that is so, and that falls short of the standard that our house (OK, mainly my DS16) has for math explanations. :-) I think epi's and others' explanations spell it out. I suspect it comes down to the mathematical desire for square root to be considered a "function"; every value of x must have only one value of y. As indicated above, to show this, if one graphs y=sq rt x, you get a parabola that fell down to the right. Every value of x > 0 has two solutions. So in order to keep square root to meet the conventional definition of "function", let's say "it only means the positive answer". Mathematicians do things like this, to keep the whole math shebang consistent and working. :-) PS I'm not a professional mathematician, so take someone else's word for it if they correct me.
  13. Ah! Sorry. I'll try to remember to report back on our new geometry adventure. I think DO algebra would be a good fit, given your similar situation to ours. It is a little pricey, but it is good and did provide just enough "distance" between DW and DD. There was still a lot of side-by-side oversight, but grading was outsourced, as was the video teaching. It is nice to be self-paced/asynchronous. DO charges per month, with a cap of I think 10 months for the course (DW keeps the books). We went 2-3 days past the 8th month just to take the final, and his bookkeeper nicely granted our request to pro-rate the last fractional month we needed. It's also nice that you can register for "honors" (which means a few extra homework problems that are a little harder but nothing AoPS-ish) and then dil down to "regular" after a few weeks. No cost difference.
  14. I hear you. I think Apologia's "Advanced Biology" course covers human stuff. I will say this. As a biology major who then went to medical school, human biology/anatomy/physiology was simply not a part of my college curriculum. When applying to med school, they actually discouraged applicants from taking college human biology. Such classes were reserved for nursing, PT and similar programs. Even my physiology college course was specifically titled ANIMAL physiology LOL. I did take some grad student courses in human-specific biology. But other than that, it really wasn't highlighted. Anyone else out there who's used Apologia Advanced Physics? With or without taking AP Physics 1 or 2 tests afterwards?
  15. We are MM fans. I will say, it took a little getting used to, and DW briefly fell into the "am I making my kid dumb?" trap. But the answer would apparently be "NO!". Also, DW is math-strong (until geometry LOL), and enjoyed teaching DD with MM. I don't know how it would be for a parent who is not good at, and enjoys, math.
  16. Hi, SusanC! Do you mean after MM7? I would for sure have her take a full year of algebra between MM7 and geometry. Sorry if I misled you there. DD did MM5-7 in 5th through 7th grades, and just completed an 8th-grade year of DO algebra this week, having begun it in August 2016. But AFTER DO algebra (or any other algebra year), DO geometry would be a good follow-up. DS did DO geometry, even though we are mixing things up a bit for DD next year and using this for geometry: https://myfunscience.com/teachers/bethany-barnosky/
  17. Keep up the discussion. Thanks all! FWIW, DS proposed this plan on his own: let him take DE US history and no English in fall. If work load seems plenty, then switch to DE English in spring, no history. If fall work load seems light, do DE history and English in fall. BTW we'll be doing DE online, probably through Cedarville, if we use it at all. Biggest downsides to his plan are: 1) Only gets US history up to Civil War, if we don't do spring term; 2) We may need to scramble for a make-up english semester (summer, or doubling up in 12th), if his college of interest doesn't consider the DE semester worth 1 high school unit. domesticidyll, you will probably be interested in knowing that Carnegie Mellon doesn't require ANY history or other social studies for STEM department admissions. I had to re-read it to make sure I saw it correctly: https://admission.enrollment.cmu.edu/pages/academic-requirements.
  18. Just to follow-up. DD just finished algebra 1 with Derek Owens. We nudged her to try "honors" class, and she finished with a high A. She is a very good student, but not a natural math "whiz". We conclude that MM5-7 prepared her very well for algebra!
  19. mamashark, I have a little bit of a different view than some posts here. Long reply, so I private-messaged you instead of posting here.
  20. No, not committed, though we've found Apologia middle school texts and high school biology to be good (I'm a biology major MD, DW a medical technologist before motherhood). DS used Wyle's Discovering Design with Chemistry this year. I think it does a good job. Frankly, it's hard to know how rigorous all of them are with DS; he aces everything including AoPS math, online courses, etc. We've never "outsourced" science since it's DW's and my strongest subject. I'll check out your recommendation, thanks! I think an "honors but not AP" physics would be about right for his other workload.
  21. So, the latest of numerous threads I've begun lately... Has anyone used Apologia Advanced Physics as a first high school physics course for gifted kid? Apologia recommends it as a second course, but if it's supposed to be an AP Physics 1 and 2 equivalent, I think those are intended for accelerated first-time algebra-based physics courses. It's my DS' idea; I'm fine giving him their normal physics and I can talk him into whatever; he wants to take AP physics w/calculus in 12th. Thanks!
  22. This came up as my DW taught my DD algebra last week. My understanding, agreed to by my AoPS star student DS: When asked in WORDS, the answer of the "square root" is the positive and negative. When asked by the funky square root symbol, it is the positive answer only, unless the radical symbol is preceded by a little +/- notation. Why? No clue. The technical term is that the positive root is the "principal root" and is understood to be the desired answer when only the square root symbol is used. If you're being asked "x^2=144", what is x?", then 12 and -12 are correct answers. But for square root questions using the symbol for square root, it is the positive answer only unless otherwise specified. One reason might be that in calculating areas and sides of a square, it makes no sense to answer with a negative answer for the length of a side.
  23. JennW, you are more help than you know! And empathy is vastly underrated, and worth much. :-) Pawz4me, that's all extremely helpful and applicable. Thank you.
  24. Thanks again so much for these helps. Truly appreciate the wisdom of a multitude of counselors. JennW, you are so right and I appreciate the correctives. We tell ourselves all of that but need to repeat it often. And BTW, I'm the homeschool dad. :-) DS and I just had conversation since my last post about some of these things, and how he needs to set the goal and then we decide how much "fun" versus "work" we have the next 2 years. I know it's hard to say it all after living with our sweet DS for 16 years. But his down time needs are due to sensory overload, not just introversion. Education experts and counselors believe he is on the spectrum, and we're getting a formal 2-day assessment this fall. His issues are just mild enough - and he's gifted enough - that he's had no academic issues until the complexity of life exceeded his executive functioning, if that makes sense. Even now, an "issue" means he takes way too much time to get some things done, school and otherwise. Grades are fine. FWIW I'm a physician (though that doesn't guarantee objectivity or autism expertise), and also have read extensively on SID and ASD the last few years to better understand DS. Please don't misunderstand; I'm not saying "I'm right, and you're wrong!" and I don't mean to sound defensive or imply that I'm the foremost authority. Just saying it's a reasonably informed opinion. Wapiti - thanks again. DS did take ACT earlier this month. Green light for whatever he aspires to. :-)
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