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Noreen Claire

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Posts posted by Noreen Claire

  1. DS11 (today is his birthday!) is working through AoPS pre-algebra. Back in the fall, he would write out pages and pages of beautiful work to solve out problems. (I used to text pictures to my BFF, who is a college math professor, because they were so nice!) At the time, my only complaint is that he would write across the page, rather than down the page. Fast-forward to lately, and it is an absolute battle every single day to get him to write down anything at all besides the answers. (If and when he does write things out, steps are still horizontally across the page, rather than down, but this is now the least of my concerns.) Usually, he will sit for a while, talking math calculations out loud to himself, and then he writes down the answer. When he goes back to check the answers, it is impossible for him to figure out where any mistakes were made, because he has no written work to consult. (FWIW, he doesn't get many wrong, so this doesn't seem to be a problem to him.) 

    I am frustrated that he won't write out his work.  We worked really hard last year, when finishing up Beast Academy, to write out solutions in full. We've talked over and over about how mathematics is a language, and he needs to be able to communicate his thoughts and solutions to other people, clearly and logically, on paper. But, he JUST WILL NOT DO IT.  Add into all of this the physical growth he's had in the last year, and the long periods of cloudy-hormone-growth-spurt-brain, and I don't know how to handle this. (He's grown several clothing and shoe sizes over the last year; as my husband says, 'He's going to be a big dude.") If I had the disposable income, I would just enroll him in AoPS pre-algrebra 2 and have him be required by someone else to write out some of the work. DH is home during this time, but he's no help on school work. 

    Any ideas on how to approach this? Or, should I just let it go for pre-algebra, and start the fight anew when we start the algebra book? 

  2. 15 minutes ago, Kassia said:


    Where did you buy the oximeter?  We bought one to prepare for quarantine, but I ended up shipping it to my son who has asthma and had Covid19 symptoms.  I couldn't find them online anywhere so now we don't have one for ourselves.  

    I was just talking to DH about the shortage of jigsaw puzzles now!  

    I ordered a pink one on Amazon. It won't ship for a week or so.

    • Thanks 1

  3. 46 minutes ago, Syllieann said:

    Ok, found one.  Looks like they are claiming fair use because all the copies owned by libraries throughout the country are inaccessible to taxpayers due to the emergency situation.  Maybe they will take it to court with this one.

    But, they are not inaccessible. You can still borrow ebooks, even with the libraries closed. My library has added a whole bunch of extra ways to borrow ebooks, audiobooks, magazines, etc while they are physically closed.

  4. Before it started, I bought two cases of shelf stable milk boxes (chocolate and strawberry, to entice picky DS7). We have local milk delivered every Tuesday, but sometimes have to run out to get another gallon before the next delivery...this keeps us from having to run to the store. I just put the first 4 boxes into the fridge for tonight.

    Just the other night, I ordered an oximeter (asthmatics in the house) and a blood pressure cuff (to keep DH from going to CVS to use the blood pressure machine).

    I was going to buy jigsaw puzzles to keep the younger boys busy, but they are suddenly hard to find online!

    • Like 1

  5. I suffer with a low-level amount of anxiety during the best of times. Lately, I've had periods of crushing anxiety, like there is a weight on my shoulders holding me down. My greatest fear is that my DS24, who works in a supermarket and has pre-existing conditions, will become infected and die. Every so often, though, my anxiety shifts and I can't focus on anything but my own death, and what will happen to my family when I'm gone. Needless to say, I have not been pleasant to be around lately. My poor children and husband don't really know what's wrong with me.

    When this is all over, I really need to find a doctor and get some help.

    • Sad 19

  6. For the most part, yes, I *try*.

    For 3rd grade next year, we will use:

    Beast Academy (math), Spelling Work Out (spelling), Zaner-Bloser (cursive), Story of the World 3 (history), Writing With Ease 3 (writing), First Language Lessons 3 (grammar), and library books for earth science/astronomy and literature. DS7 wants to learn Greek, so probably Song School Greek, though DS10 had used Little Latin Readers in 3rd.

    • Like 2

  7. My middle three boys (10, 7, and 5) all have birthdays in the next 6 weeks. I am in need of book recommendations for the 10 and 7 year old boys for birthday gifts. They both burn through books from the library, but I just can't figure out what to BUY for them this year. Gift giving is usually my super power, as my family and friends will attest to, but my anxiety is up lately and I'm having trouble coming up with good ideas. Both are excellent and voracious readers who usually have more than one book going at a time. 

    Favorites of DS10: anything by Rick Riordan, Stuart Gibbs (Spy School series), Eoin Colfer (Artemis Fowl series), Gordan Korman, James Patterson, Amulet series, Nathan Hale's Hazardous Tales, etc. He has asked recently about reading The Hunger Games, but I'm not sure if he'll like it...

    Favorites of DS7: mostly non-fiction (science, math, coding, ciphers, logic), Ben Hatke (Little Robot, Mighty Jack), Secret Coders series, Science Comics series, books on crafting and building (origami, pop-up books, Legos, etc), David Macauley, joke books, etc.


  8. The problems in each chapter are numbered from 1 through 100-something, so if you turn to the first problem you have in the book you will know exactly how many problems you are actually missing. (For example, if page 8 starts with question #9, then you are only missing 8 questions). Looking at book 2D which I just grabbed off the shelf, you might only be missing 5-10 problems. The solution to those problems are written out IN FULL in the back of the book, so you might be able to recreate them if you really wanted to... Hope that helps!

    • Like 1
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  9. I almost bought four potholder looms last night to keep the boys' hands busy. I put it off until this morning, and then I remembered that we have some beginners cross-stitch materials set aside and I think I'll take those out this afternoon. It's supposed to be rainy and cold for the rest of the week, so this should keep them busy until it's outdoors weather again.

    But, the potholder looms are still in my shopping cart, just in case!

    • Like 4

  10. We just did the Iowa test for my 2nd grader (will be 8 next month). I remember some sections I had to read to him and some sections he read himself. I don't remember there being any vocabulary in the 2nd grade test that was too difficult. Maybe it's just that 1st graders are so variable with reading levels, that they aim high in order to catch everyone? He did the CogAt the same week, so we scheduled it M/T for CoGat and W/Th/F for the Iowa. DS10 took them the next week online, M/T/W.

    FWIW, this was the first time he had ever taken a test or filled in bubbles. I had to go back and fix lots of bubbles for him (he's a lefty and it was messy). The main issue that he had was that he would not go through and read all the answers, he would stop at the first answer that sounded correct. 

    • Like 1

  11. On 3/14/2020 at 9:47 AM, Noreen Claire said:

    I spent hours the other day placing literature, history, and math books on hold for the next six weeks of school. I can 'suspend' the holds, and set a date in the future to have them automatically 'unsuspend', so that they will roll in weekly, instead of all at once. Five minutes ago, I went back into the website and 'unsuspended' all the books. I need them to come in before they decide to close all the local libraries completely!

    I may go back in and request some science books...

    Gah. The children's librarian just called to say that they will be stopping interlibrary loans as of this afternoon. So, I won't be getting any of the books that I requested if they aren't already in transit. Boo! 😭

    (Of course, I totally understand this and am in favor of whatever makes everyone safer. But, still.... Boo!)

  12. Saw this tweet this morning about starting a journal to detail how we get through this period of time. 

    There was a book made from the journal of a woman in England during WWII called "Nella Last's War" that I've just requested from the library. I'm not much of a journaler, but I'm going to start one today. I may ask my DH & kids to add to it, as well. It will give us something to do!

    • Like 3

  13. I spent hours the other day placing literature, history, and math books on hold for the next six weeks of school. I can 'suspend' the holds, and set a date in the future to have them automatically 'unsuspend', so that they will roll in weekly, instead of all at once. Five minutes ago, I went back into the website and 'unsuspended' all the books. I need them to come in before they decide to close all the local libraries completely!

    I may go back in and request some science books...

    • Like 3

  14. We made sure to get in two museum/aquarium visits within the last two weeks, because I guessed that this was coming. With DS5's speech therapy now cancelled, we can get in some extra school-type stuff in on Wednesdays (we usually only do math, logic, and read literature) so that when everyone else goes back to school we can ditch and go to the beach!

    Though, with DH home for the next two weeks (at least), it will be a bit harder to run school around here. Let's hope he has a project he wants to work on, by himself, in the garage... 

    • Like 1

  15. 10 minutes ago, KungFuPanda said:

    Ds doesn't like fish sticks. 

    DS10 could eat his weight in fish sticks if I let him. I have to cut him off at 3 servings. Seriously, 600+ calories of fish sticks is enough for one sitting! 

    On a related note, one of the local supermarket chains had a buy-one-get-one-free sale on the large bags of fish sticks for Lent and I *may* have bought six bags. 🤣

    • Like 1

  16. I would like to say that I will use my time to knit through my stash and finish some the mending and knitting projects BUT DH will be home from both his teaching jobs for at least the next two weeks and, honestly, I fear that I will just have *more* work to do. It's harder to get school work done when he's home, and I tend to cook more complex meals when he's home for dinner. There will be more people in the house, so more dishes, cleaning, etc...

    • Like 2

  17. After this Saturday, when DS7 will participate in his first Sacrament of Reconciliation, I will be keeping the younger three boys home from church. DS 10 is the only alter server, so he and DH will probably continue to go for as long as they continue to have Saturday mass. (We attend a slowly-dying congregation, and there is usually +/-10 ft between each group of parishioners in the pews already.) I will still request/pick-up books from the library, but we won't go hang out in the children's room anymore. DS5 will not attend speech therapy at the public school (they have not yet suspended classes). 

    The younger 4 boys are getting very good at coughing into their elbows and washing their hands.

    We are pretty well stocked for food & supplies, and I have some cough meds and things coming from Amazon early next week. I will make any quick trips to the market for fresh fruits & veggies first thing in the mornings, so as to minimize exposure to larger crowds. We have milk delivered to a box outside the kitchen door on Tuesday mornings.

    DH's two schools (he teaches both high school and community college) have both closed as of today for at least the next two weeks. The only person I am truly concerned about is DS24, as he works in the busiest supermarket in the city. He was called in early today, and says that it's very busy. I keep reminding him about wearing gloves, washing his hands, and using hand sanitizer (they have it in the back for employees). Unfortunately, he is my kid who nearly died from whooping cough as a newborn and then H1N1-related pneumonia in 2009, and has had pneumonia several times in the last ten years. He's also an asthmatic and a vaper, though he's cut way back in the last 6 months. I have no doubt that, if he catches covid-19, he will most likely end up hospitalized, or worse. My anxiety is high right now.

    • Sad 4

  18. My kids use both Libby (the updated *and better* Overdrive app) and Audible. I do the same thing for both apps for the younger ones: I start the book and then lock the screen. Then, they can't do anything except listen to it, adjust the volume, or pause/stop the playback from the lock screen. If/when they need to start a new book, they bring me the device (we use Kindles, but it works the same on my Android and DH's iPhone) and I unlock it, change books, and lock again.


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  19. As someone who went a good loooooong time with a picture of Chris Evans as Captain America set as my phone's wallpaper, it is entirely possible that it is innocent. 

    On the other hand, as someone who's first husband cheated  - blatantly - in the small amount of time that we were actually married, I would try to get to the bottom of it, one way or the other.

    • Like 4
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