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  1. How old are your children? Have you searched YouTube for reviews? I find video reviews so much more helpful. Though, I agree good reviews of MCT are lacking. My 4th grader tried Wordly Wise for a couple months this past year, but I didn't like it much. The words in the lessons were unrelated. She did it mostly independently and was agreeable to it, but I ended up dropping it. I was planning to try Vocab from Classical Roots but found MCT. We are about 40 pages into Building Language (Island level vocab) and I think it is easy, fun reading and seems like it will be quick to process before delving into Caesar's English. I am reading it with my 7 and 9 yr olds. Not much experience but... fwiw.
  2. I'm trying to do Island and Town this coming year. It is a little daunting as it's just so many books. I'm starting them together on Building Language because I have an extra student copy. They are enjoying it and so am I. I think we will also do Music of the Hemispheres together, then they will go their separate ways. The older child has about 10 more days in last year's English, then I'll have to get more serious with the new work schedule in summer school.
  3. They are very different but they are also the 2 I am considering. My daughter finished grade 4 Abeka. I gave her the 4A placement and decided to start there. It is not that the concepts are so difficult but they are presented differently and I think she would benefit from stepping back a bit, and she's young for her grade. I'm trying BA first because I can just start with 1 quarter. Only purchasing 4A (really need to place that order!) at first which I think is a great way to try it out. If we hate it, it will be 1 quarter used only in the summer. She enjoyed the illustrations just on the practice test. I think she'll love the guidebook.
  4. I don't see how a sport can be fun if you don't have any skill, and I don't see how can you grow skill if you only play for one season. I also think making friends on a team takes longer than one season. They are busy during games and it is not really a time for making friends. I have found this to be a problem that while my kids are around other kids a lot in classes and sports, it is not social time. You'll need just regular free play for friendship building, I think. My son is a bit similar in that he often says he doesn't want to go do things but he always has fun and is glad we went. If your son is talking to other kids and not standing alone all the time, it sounds like he is doing fine.
  5. Our school is similar. Only half the funds can go to extracurricular which includes music, art and sports. The other half is for core classes which includes math, lang arts, history, science, geography, and foreign language. I have no problem spending all our funds. Save your receipts and watch when the school year starts. I am not supposed to make purchases before May and cannot be reimbursed until after July.
  6. Hits: Cottage Press Fable & Song was just what my daughter needed this year. I had my doubts, but it has worked out well for her. I love the classical lit selections and how every part of the lesson references the literature. Writing was building outlines and re-telling of stories, and her writing has much improved. It was interesting and gentle and challenging. The diagrams are very complicated at the end of the book, so much that I often draw the structure for her to fill in. I do have a complaint that space is tight for these tall diagrams with compound parts. Getting Started With Latin was painful for the first half of the year when I had my daughter writing out the translations. Since switching to oral, it has been great, and her retention has improved! I'm thinking of trying the Getting Started with Spanish, even though they have already had a lot of Spanish. Abeka Spelling 1 was a good workbook for my first grader. We didn't test this, I just had him do the workbook activities as extra practice in addition to LOE C & D, but I liked the way it was structured. SOTW 2 was another good year. We tried the audio at the beginning of the year and the kids didn't like it. After a lot of Jim Weiss stories, we tried the audio again, and now they like it, and I think having the audio in the car is great for review. We also listened to year 2 MOH audio. It was a lot of church history. I didn't like it as much as year 1 but still worthwhile. The kids like it, even my 4 yr old asks for "history of mystery." Misses: Spelling Power: Hated this. Such a ridiculous 50 pages of instructions. All kinds of placement tests and we never were in a challenging list. Sometimes she would test through 70 words and not get any wrong. I retested and we were still in that section. I gave up on it. NOEO Chemistry 1: So disappointing! I kept expecting it to get better. I did buy an older used version so maybe the new version is better. This was very weak in comparison to our previous science years with Bookshark. The reading sources were so boring, I felt like I would fall asleep reading them (not exaggerating but it was also always during afternoon when I was tired). The experiments were mostly boring. I can think of 2 good ones. I gave up on the experiments at about week 28, and we just finished the rest of the reading. No workbook pages or discussion questions either (bookshark had nice worksheets) just do your own notebooking, which I don't like at all. Weird part is that the kids always were attentive to reading and seemed ok with it.. I feel badly because they requested chemistry and I was anticipating a lot of fun. The Good and the Beautiful language arts 3 : I purchased after someone I knew recommended it, but after looking through it, immediately resold. It did not contain classical literature and artwork as I expected, and I did not like the religious content after realizing it was a Mormon publisher. Definitely not a fit for us. ETA: was organizing the school books last night and found another miss. We tried Wordly Wise (I think 3000) but only used it for a couple of months. My daughter worked through it without complaining and seemed to like the activities. I did not like that it was so dry and the words in a list were not related. I would prefer vocabulary based on their roots. I just gradually left it out of our rotation until it was buried at the end of the bookshelf.
  7. I feel like I am having issues with planning. We just finished all math and son's lang arts, but my daughter's lang arts has at least 5 more weeks, and we have 6 more chapters of SOTW. Even though I am going to year round school, I wasn't planning my year that way and expected to have more finished by now. My next post is going to ask questions about scheduling. So, with all those issues, I want to just watch the TWSS all at once right away when I have the time. Maybe when they ask for specific sections, I can rewatch as needed, but making space for videos during the school year sounds extremely tricky and unlikely.
  8. Thanks, I think I'll go ahead and buy new. Honestly, I've resisted the program largely because of the teacher training--14 hours!! I've decided that I can watch it while I workout in mornings... I hope that I'm not supposed to be taking notes or practicing outline structure while watching the video! 😒 Anyway, I would get irritated very quickly if the DVD and books didn't align, and probably quit the program. I x-posted on K-8 board and was told that there is free shipping first week of July, so that will have to be enough savings 🙂
  9. Ok, thank you. What is SICC? I was looking at TWSS and SWI-A. I did find a combination of listings so I could get all the latest editions for about a $40 savings, but then I worry about scratched DVDs so I think I'll just buy new. It looks like IEW has some free helps also when I register with them. I did just get some great deals at a used curriculum sale, and I was given a full set of Life of Fred math, so I shouldn't be so reluctant to spend this money. $500 for language arts for one child just seems excessive, also because they are both new so seem risky to me.
  10. Getting started with Latin is quick and painless if you do it orally. Can easily do in 10-15 min per day. We spent the first half of the year writing translations and it was long and painful. Oral is much better and I think retention is great.
  11. Returned to this post to look deeper into this link and noticed your signature. How do you like "Mapping the World by Heart"? I haven't heard of it before, but had been recently looking into Map Trek. ETA: I emailed one person. I am surprised that people ask close to list price for used materials. At that point, I'd rather buy new. I won't buy used just to save 10%. Also, many users have 1 or no reviews. There are a few users with hundreds of reviews so I would try to buy from one of them. A great site to remember. Thank you!
  12. I've been watching and I see that resale prices are high. I also don't like paying a lot for used especially when there are mismatched editions. I'll just have to buy new I guess. I've been watching Ebay for a couple months. I don't do/have facebook.
  13. Well, I haven't purchased yet. Was trying to find it used but it seems like it's being sold with old DVDs and new notebooks. Just seems so expensive to buy new at $250 for TWSS and SWI-A package. And using MCT this year which is another $250 (also can't find used) and $500 for language arts is so much 😞
  14. Can I use the original DVDs with the current edition books (for teaching course and SWI)? Has video content changed or is it just repackaged? 
  15. I am starting year round schooling this summer. My focus is on having kids up early so we are always done by noon and can enjoy summer afternoons, especially because dad is home at 3. I would try to get a schedule to be done early. It is motivational to my kids. I get up before 6, eat, workout, shower, then get them up, and try for around 7. They do have play breaks within their work time and sometimes go outside for a bit. I am also super open to tweaking schedule or taking field trips because we are getting extra days in over summer. Good luck! My daughter is the same age. 10 at end of summer and going into 5th.
  16. I have the cuisinart and I like it and use it fairly often. Haven't in awhile but have been thinking about it. Maybe for Memorial Day I will! I have an extra freezer bowl. I made awesome coconut ice cream. I used a can of "Cream of coconut " which is on the drink mixes aisle, and I think I just added a pint of whipping cream and maybe milk. No eggs, sugar or cooking needed on this one and it was super creamy. I added chocolate shavings and chopped almonds. It was perfect, but it is super high fat.
  17. Can you used scissors to cut hair off roller bar? Do you have carpet or hard floors? I like my miele but it is fairly expensive.
  18. Can I use the original DVDs with the current edition books (for teaching DVDs and SWI)? Has video content changed or is it just repackaged?
  19. Slightly off topic... I remember seeing something posted about teaching a child to recognize syllable breaks. Is that just by locating the vowels? Can you point to a resource for this? So tonight, my son actually did want to read, but the book he chose (Violet the Pilot) had a lot of tricky words. I wanted to go to bed so we alternated reading sentences which may have been one of my best ideas. It was less intimidating, and he tried to keep up with my rate. When he came to "reassembled", it was really a struggle and I had to read it syllable by syllable. It is a weird looking word when you consider that he has learned "ea" as a phonograms. I guess, just with time, he learns about common prefixes and where syllable breaks are? I don't remember having this issue with my older child.
  20. I ended up pretty happy with Cottage Press Fable & Song. My daughter was able to do a lot independently. It was consistently structured. They also have a primer level for younger kids. Our school considered it secular. It does contain 4 famous parables of Jesus, but as literature not religious direction. The rest of the content is from Aesop's Fables and Robert Louis Stevenson's poems. I loved the literature content and everything is based on the lit selection, diagramming, vocab, etc. I do think another spelling program is needed. I believe the primer levels have picture study. ETA: we are trying MCT next year. I felt CP Bards & Poets was too advanced for my young upcoming 5th grader. It might be good for your 7th grader. Check out samples online, and email them any questions. The author was very helpful to me because I, too, was concerned about religious content right after a recent bad curriculum purchase late last summer. CP was also very reasonably priced. It was just what we needed this year, and I'm so grateful everything fell into place and we found it.
  21. SOTW is more interesting than MOH. We have used SOTW books with MOH audio in the car. Recently tried SOTW audio again, and it is great. You would be surprised how much listening can be done in the car. I'm going to buy last year's cycle just for review in the car. I would try the audio for SOTW because it's worthwhile if you end up using something else. Then just discuss after each chapter. Maybe she can write about what she learned. Are you afterschooling or homeschooling?
  22. My son is also 7 (in Oct) and old for his grade and also never wants to read. He wanted to read when he first began, but no longer does. I think it just takes too long and he doesn't want to sit. I get frustrated because he tries to guess words just to hurry up the process. Then I have to send him back to the word and it slows him down. I'm not happy with his wpm. We use LOE, and the spring rate for grade 1 is something like 75 wpm. My son is closer to the fall rate, which I think is 40 wpm. He does read with expression and looks at pictures but it doesn't slow him down that much. I'm firm on having him read twice a day from now on. I'm also having him follow the words with his finger. It helps him not get lost. What is your son reading? Can you get something enjoyable? We are reading Dodsworth books now and my son thinks they are funny. I would let him choose some in the beginner section of the library. Does your library have a summer reading program? Ours charts books read and gives prizes so is motivational.
  23. The cost of the car camper we would like isn't realistic for the amount it would be used so we tent camp. I think the cost is about $80k and probably used for a total of 1 month out of the year. We do camp a lot in the summers, often every other weekend will be a long weekend camping and will take a week occasionally. We have a large tent which fits 2 sets of bunk bed cots (saw some at Costco recently), which save a lot of space. We have a P.E.T. (portable, environmental toilet) which you set up like a little stool and put bags under. We only use it for numbers greater than 1. The woods are used for #1 (we camp in pretty remote areas so this is not a problem). We have a little outhouse/shower tent (like This) for the PET and also take a camp shower. We have a propane tent heater but don't let it burn while asleep. The worst thing about tent camping is needing to go potty on a cold night, or maybe it's trying to nap on a hot day... Anyway, we need to endure a little hardship to build character. And it is so fun to watch bugs crawl on outside of the tent! ETA: we also put a thermarest over cots which makes it super comfortable. Anyone on the ground would also get a thermarest. Right now, we can fit small kids head to toe on one cot so it works with no one on the ground. Oh, the other worst thing about tent camping is kids rolling out of their sleeping bags, being cold and crying in the middle of the night. Maybe that is the worst, because it never only happens once in a night. However, it is not as bad with cots because there is less freedom to roll. To answer the title question, I would choose the camper trailer. If you are at commercial camp sites, you can leave the camper behind and just drive your car.
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