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Everything posted by Supergirl9801

  1. I understand that one can homeschool without going to a co-op. I know many that do. I base my assumptions on what the mother herself has told me (a lot of "Oh, I'm not sure yet what we're doing" half way through the year) and comments from the kids ("we haven't done "school" since the end of last year"). I would get it if the Mom were the un-schooling or student-led type of teaching style mama...but that's not the case. She's bought workbooks and such in the past and that's her thing...it's just not happening anymore. She's either feeling overwhelmed or just figures her kiddos will figure it out on her own b/c she did (her mom homeschooled her pretty much the same way).
  2. Thank you everyone for your suggestions. I have chatted with our other mutual friend and she is going to reach out to her. I will as well when I encounter her next. This is a totally real situation and yes, I am not the WTM forums, but not new to homeschooling. I've just never really had time to be commenting on message boards. I recently came here and joined b/c I was researching some curriculums. Some of you asked about how old the kids are...they are 12, 11, 11 (twins, one of which would probably be in special education class if in public school) and a 3 year old. When the mom works, the kids are left home alone or their dad is home with them. We are always reaching out and asking her to join in on activities. In fact, she used to participate in our co-op. But she's since stopped (a couple years ago) and doesn't participate in any other activities either (except for the dance/karate classes I mentioned). The kids are able to read, so I do pray they are taking it upon themselves to learn on their own. It's just heartbreaking to see a parent not show much of a desire to actually educate their children.
  3. I am really torn and could use some advice. I have known a family for several years now. They are fellow homeschoolers and my DD and one of their girls have become the best of friends. They have 5 kids total. The dad works full time and the mom has always worked on and off part-time. I'm really worried for these kids. I don't doubt what so ever that the parents love their kids, however they do barely any IF any schooling at all. I'm not talking about un-schooling or anything like that either. I mean they do nothing even close to what would be considered anything like that either. They used to be good about it and even attended our co-op one year, but then things really went downhill. They aren't involved in anything other than extra-curricular stuff (karate, dance class). I honestly think the mom just either doesn't want to or doesn't have time between juggling her job and family. I don't know. I worry especially for their youngest daughter who seems to have a learning disability. The mom talked a couple years ago about putting her in public school to get her some help, (At the time, I thought Finally!, she's going to do something to help her daughter) but she never did and it's only gone done hill from there. I am not the only family who's noticed this either. Two other mutual friends of ours have both expressed the same concerns too. I hate to consider calling CPS, part of me thinks it's none of my business. But, then, we live in a REALLY lax state when it comes to homeschooling and there's no oversight what-so-ever and I do believe that children deserve the right to be educated. Would love advice (even if it's flaming, believe me I get it. I'm quite torn over this).
  4. Yours are pretty close to mine in age (mine are heading into 4th and 6th), so I'll tell you that this past year was a HUGE change for us. I had to start working more so I started demanding the kids to help more with chores around the house. They really stepped up. Was everything done as well as I would've done/liked. No. Lowering my standards and giving them the independence to "keep" our house has made huge changes though. I'm also learning to prioritize. Get done with them what needs to be done WITH ME and let them do what they can on their own WITHOUT ME. They need my help getting them through their instructional time with Math, LA, Science, Etc. They don't need my help doing the worksheets, and really just need oversight working through projects. I do take summer time to prep for the following year. I'm already working on next year this is my plan too. Particularly with projects. I find that if I don't have all the supplies and things prepped and planned out prior then we just won't do it. It needs to be easy peasy during the year b/c things come up. I'm also saying NO to more things. Co-Op is being reserved for actual educational classes. If we're going to leave the house for something, then it needs to be worth it AND pertain to what we're actually studying! Why take a trip to pan for gold if we're studying Ancient History (YKWIM?). Yeah it sounds fun, but, let's save it for when we get there. Try to connect with people locally (or even online) that are studying the same things AND keep the same pace as you do. I find sticking with a smaller group is much better anyway. That's not to say that the occasional "park day" or "play date" still doesn't have it's benefits. However, one of the best pieces of advice I ever heard at a Homeschool Convention had to do with teaching multiple kids. They said to teach to the oldest and let the rest follow along. I've only got 2 but I know many with multiples that have started implenting this approach and it works great.
  5. Anyone ever run across anything like this for these series of books??
  6. Love LOVE LOVE Homeschool Planet. Worth every single penny. I've tried every type of planner you can think of. I love that I can replicate and plan out the entire year, yet easily tweak and make changes and bump things when needed. I can even link to websites directly in the assignments. They are really responsive to questions and are always updating and making things better. It far outweighs any other planner I've ever found!
  7. I will have a 4th grader and 6th grader and I'm trying to incorporate some new subjects. Up to this point, we've covered the basics (Bible, Math, Language Arts, History, Science). We've dabbled in typing, but not hit any foreign languages or anything else. Wondering what subjects others are covering next year for similar aged students. Thanks.
  8. I'm new to the forums but not HS. I'll add my tidbit since I came across this while searching about Veritas Press. History is my favorite subject and I love the Unit Study approach and I've tried everything from just unit studies to TOG, to SOTW, to researching Biblioplan and now we're signed up with VP. I went with VP for this coming year b/c it's picking up pretty well from leaving off from SOTW this past year. I really really really wanted to love TOG. After all my mom had used it when she homeschooled my kid sister and had ALL of it (if you've ever priced it out you can only wonder why I felt like I hit the jackpot)...unfortunately, I found it sorely overwhelming for the elementary/lower middle school age kids. (Mine are 8/11). Considering how expensive it is, I felt it should've been much more laid out for you instead of just giving random suggestions every week. It's also rather difficult to find most of the books in your local library (and my library searches all the libraries in my whole state!!). Also, people who do TOG tend to hand onto the books (which who can blame them) so everything really does seem to hold it's value pretty well (aka EXPENSIVE...did I mention that it's EXPENSIVE). Now some may say...well, you don't have to stick to their book list...well that depends. In the lower levels, you have question sheets that go along with the suggested reads...so if you can't find the book then you have to buy it. Now if you have kids in different levels, reading different books that pertain to these different sheets then you're really spending the $$. Now lets say you skip the sheets and just go with other books suggested...then what's the point?? Seriously, grab a book list from Son-light or a unit study and plan it all out yourself. Now I will say this....when it gets to older grades (upper middle/high school) then I may give it a shot again b/c I do like the re-caps they give parents so that students can be assigned a particular book and instead of the parent having to read the book too, they are given specific details about the book to understand what their kid is reading and able to have conversations about it. But that's not until the upper levels. IMHO TOG is a complete waste of money for younger kids. I would be continuing with SOTW again if I didn't have some family issues coming up that needed me to really free up my time from schooling a bit and require them to be more independant (I'm really going to miss reading to them :() SOTW has been around for quite a while and you'll find that unless you're studying the ancients you're not going to find too much "bible" that gets incorporated with any of the other curriculums talked about (TOG, Biblioplan for example focus on the book Trial and Triumph and stories about missionaries during Y2/Y3/Y4 etc). You can easily incorporate that yourself. Or pick out a nice devotional to do or a different bible curriculum. I actually did luck out last year with SOTW and found someone who had written out lesson plans and she did incorporate bible with SOTW Y2 and had it all laid out over the course of 3x/week. It's been around long enough that you can google and find lots of resources to go along with it. I found free lapbooks, video links, etc. I was researching Biblioplan last year and almost went with them after giving up on TOG before discovering SOTW. I found it ironic though that SOTW was listed as a spine book for BP (it is for TOG too). So I'm thinking...if all these curriculums are listing SOTW as their spine, what's the deal with it. Really the only thing missing from it is the bible aspect. Which I already mentioned about the relevance of that. I liked that it had TONS of suggested History/literature read alongs for each week and MOST of them I was able to find in my library. I liked that the main book actually was SOTW (no hunting down/buying additional books just to answer questions). I liked the follow up questions that pertained to what you read. I loved the activity book with all the coloring sheets and suggested projects. Hands down, awesome sauce curriculum and it's CHEAP!! Did I mention, it's CHEAP!!! Anyway...there's my $.02 from a mama who changes it up practically every stinking year!!!
  9. Ok, so we're giving this curriculum a shot this year. We signed up when it was on sale in November an obviously don't want to start our year yet so we haven't logged in. Can someone point me in the direction of a lesson plan or at least a list of what's studied weekly? Is there a correlating book list or suggested projects that we'll be given or that I can find somewhere? While I love the "hands off" approach for me as the teacher, I still want my kiddos doing some additional things, like journaling and/or lapbooks and maybe an occasional fitting project. Any advice for a newbie to this curriculum? How long do the typical sessions last daily too? I read somewhere it's 5/week? We're doing Explorers to 1815 this next school year. Thanks -Rachael
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