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  1. I've read through a ton of posts on Classical Conversations, all of which have been good and bad reviews. However, I'm not looking for a review as much as I'm looking for someone to help with a little perspective. We've had experience with CC for the past three years. Every year I'm torn between sticking with the program or completely flushing it. This year, we're sitting out because of an out of state move. We also have a great classical academy at our church that is cheaper and similar in nature but not the exact same material. I want to keep all my material for CC but honestly, I'm having a hard time fitting it all into the schedule plus what we're getting at the academy and the everyday priorities e.g. reading, math, spelling, english..... I almost have a guilty feeling for not using it but stop myself from pulling the plug completely. Anyone in the same position or have been in the same position? Should I let it all go or determine to find a spot for it in our day?
  2. I know this has been discussed in the past, but I can't find any specific threads. I would love to know what is 'normal' wrt how much time you plan vs how long things actually take. For example, if you had 2 hours of 'school' to get through with 3 kids together, plus half an hour of individual work for each kid, theoretically this would take you 3.5 hours to finish. But how long does it take in real life (not including planned 'in between' time such as a snack break)? What do you do to make things run more smoothly and not take all day?
  3. what types of routines, rules, habits, arrangements help you to keep your school day running smoothly? I thought it might be helpful to have a thread where we could share how we each handle these types of things. I'm dealing with a 10 and 14 year old, so my challenges might not be the same as others. Currently I'm struggling to organize everything---our day, week, school work, schedules, etc. For example, do you require all work to be completely where you can see it being done? I know some have had kids who go off to do work and are so easily distracted that they don't come back for the next subject. Do you make certain areas of the house off limits b/c they tempt Dc to goof off? Do have a rule that Dc must check in with you after completing each subject or independent assignment? How do you store books so that they are easily available to you, yet also for your children? I know there are more things that I'm not even thinking of. Basically, post your best tips for how you keep you and Dc on track with school throughout the day. One of my biggest issues: where to store the books? I hate having them all over the place and I need them where I can easily get to them if I need to look at them. I bought Ds a cube bookshelf from target last year, but I think it actually makes it harder to find books instead of easier. Books and binders don't fit if stood up, so they have to be set in lying down. Then we can't easily see the titles and pull out what we need. *I* think they eat up more space b/c the structure of the cubes take up so much space. I think I need to clear some shelf space somewhere for them, so they can be lined up in a row with spines visible.
  4. I'm having the crazy notion of limiting implicit 3 r's instruction to 3 days a week, so we have time for projects, baking, science experiments, etc. We currently have a four-day a week schedule as my dh only has Monday's off. My eldest is starting 1st grade at 6 (May birthday). He has finished LOE Foundations A-C and the 1st 10 lessons of D. He is reading at a solid 2nd grade level possibly higher (but I haven't really tested him). He reads things around him with ease (signs, instructions, Bible verses, workbook pages) struggling with some 3-5 syllable words (determining where to split syllables). We have never struggled with phonics/reading lessons. In Math he is a little more than 1/2 way through Right Start B. We stopped lessons about 10 weeks ago before the dreaded rough spot in RS B and have just been playing math games. He knows his 10 and 15 facts down pat, grasps place value, and can add any multiple of 5 and 10. He recently has been figuring out 11, 12, 13, etc facts on his own. So I think we will be able to get over the hump just fine. His handwriting, well, that needs some work. He can correctly form his letters. But only wants to write in CAPS and it could be neater. I let it slide last year b/c he was 5. I wasn't planning on doing formal spelling (i.e. tests) until 3rd grade maybe 2nd and I'm not looking to accelerate math. Science, history, geography excite him so I don't want to shove it under the rug. It's what makes learning fun for him. Here's the plan: Tuesday - Thursday: TOG History/Literature: Mom Read Aloud w/ some buddy reading - 15 Minutes Mapping Exercise (T), Lit Oral Narration/Sheet (W), History Oral Narration/Drawing (TH) - 15 Minutes LOE Foundations D: Phonogram & Spelling Rule Lesson/Review and Game, Dictate & Mark 5 Spelling Words (T), Vocab Lesson, Dictate & Mark 5 Spelling Words (W), Read Book/Reader & do Reading Comp exercises (TH). - 15 Minutes English Lessons Through Literature Mom Read Aloud 1 chapter and read Aesop Fable- 15 Minutes (We may move chapter read-aloud to bed-time) Copy 1 Sentence and go over Grammar- 15 Minutes Outside Time/Lunch/Quiet Time - 3.5 Hours RS B Math: 30 Minutes Sassafrass Zoology Mom Read Aloud with some buddy reading - 10 Minutes Complete Animal & Habitat Sheet (T), Complete Animal Sheet & Vocab Words (W), Update Habitat and Food Charts (Th) - 10 Minutes Piano Practice - 15 minutes FRIDAY TOG Project: i.e. artwork, costume, tool/weapon, instrument, salt-dough map, diorama, etc. (May involve some reading/writing) **Optional: Wee Folk Art/Seasonal Craft and/or Baking with younger brother. (1-3 hours total as interested) Nature Study at Nature Center w/ Picnic Lunch Math Games (30 Minutes) Science Demonstration (20 Minutes) (Will occasionally do lab sheet/writing.) Piano Practice = 15 Minutes SATURDAY Piano Lesson - 20 Minutes Art Lesson/ Project 1 hour - while listening to classical kids cd. So per week for 3 R's we will do: Reading/Spelling Review all phonograms, learn new phonograms, read leveled book/reader, reading comprehension exercise Buddy read 3-4 higher level books with Mom Dictate and Mark 10 new spelling words Review select spelling rules Writing: Copy 3 sentences Do 3-4 Oral Narrations Misc. Worksheet writing Math 2-3 Lessons per week 30 Minutes of Math Games (plus occasional family games in the evening) So anybody have experience with this. Is this sufficient for a child who progresses well and (so far) has had no issues? TIA Kerry
  5. Good afternoon fellow educators, I am in the current stages of planning out our 6th grade year. I have three children ranging in age from 3-11. I am struggling on how to teach the history portion to my 11 year old. It seems that the only way I will be able to check his work, and make sure things are moving in the right direction, is if I read along side him or pre-read the text. Is this correct, or am I missing something? This is a huge concern for me. I am also teaching 3rd grade and I have a toddler. The idea of having to basically do the history lessons before he does, is worrisome. Please correct me if I am wrong. Or if you have ideas or suggestions I would greatly welcome them. Thanks for your time, Tracy
  6. My son is in 1st grade. Right now we are trying to do A LOT everyday. Our day is: Scripture study spelling phonics math writing (WWE) book report/story writing computers TTH memorization, grammar TTH history/science music- recorder practice We have a hard time fitting it all in, and we're often rushing through the fun stuff at the end of the day. I've been thinking of switching to a MWF/TTH schedule, something like math and LA on MWF and history, science, computers and art on TTH. BUT How can I get through a whole year's worth of math only doing three lessons a week? Saxon has 130-something lessons. If we only do three per week, taking three months off during the year (whenever those months happen to be) that would leave, at best, 40 weeks of school, which would get me 120 lessons of math IF I never missed a day (HA!). So, I know there are people who don't do math everyday, or phonics, or however you swap it, I know there are people who are not doing everything everyday. So what's the secret? Do you skip lessons? Do you do two in one day? Do you just not finish a grade level every year and not care about it? (NOTE: the latter is not an option for us. My son is in a state program that buys all our books in exchange for taking standardized tests four times a year and quarterly check ups with a teacher. Ick, I know, but, hey, free books of my choice!) How can I adjust our schedule so that the "fun" subjects get more time, but the "vital" subjects are still happening and getting done?
  7. Please help me schedule out PLL as the "center" with other Language Arts as needed. Maybe I overbought curriculum. This is for a 3rd grader, so we are doing the entire PLL book this year (some split it over 2nd/3rd) I have: Primary Language Lessons (Hillside version) Writing With Ease Memoria Press Literature Grade 2 (I use it a year behind) Courage of Sarah Noble, Little House in Big Woods, Mr. Popper's Peguins, & Tales from Beatrix Potter Seton Spelling 3 Seton English 3 Seton Phonics Seton Reading Comprehension (could do this in Religion, because it's pretty much bible history) Seton Handwriting 3 Seton Vocabulary 3 American Cardinal Reader Grade 3 Thanks for your help!!
  8. I need a serious kick in my pants. I know that I should just be a grown-up and do what needs to be done around here but it's just not happening. I grow so weary of the non-stop urging my children to help, the follow-ups, and trying to keep up. But I'm sinking further and further into mess and disorganization. It's really just picking up and putting away and making the house look sort of tidy and working on some organization (ie make sure everything has a home and if it doesn't, it's out of here). I start and feel overwhelmed and then quit. I've tried all kinds of cleaning plans/routines but they don't really help because they aren't asking me if I actually got it done and they are generally way too overwhelming. DH is too sweet to complain and keep me accountable and thinks I do enough. And all my IRL friends are perfect (LOL! I know that's not true! but it seems that way!) I've hired in some help, too. And I don't want to waste that and use that time wisely to really get some organizing projects knocked out. But I'm the ultimate time waster. Ideas? Groups I could join? Hire a drill sergeant to come in and yell at me periodically?
  9. Maybe by finishing on Saturday or something? I want to do a planner for each child for next year, but when I tried that one year, the dates always got messed up and it ended up being difficult to follow what they had done and for them to tell what was next. Do you guys have any ideas for planners that actually work??? I need a way of keeping my dc accountable. I just did a check off the list thing this year from Donna Young's site that was nice in a way, but it didn't show the details that I would like. Any thoughts? I was wondering if I had them make up the work on Saturdays, maybe we could actually stay on track. Thanks!
  10. Hi -- I think this is my first thread on this board -- hello! (and thank you for the valuable advice I've been gleaning while Lurking & Occasionally Commenting) A. is just starting Singapore Discovering Math CC 7A (as of today :) ) and I'm wondering if y'all have any pointers for scheduling it? We can wing it by time-per-day, of course, but I really liked the little segmented assignments of the earlier Singapore level. It gave me a good sense of what we should accomplish, and corresponded very well to what A. could do happily (as in, without breaking into tears or getting cranky from frustration/tiredness). Also sometimes my working-time estimates are off because the toddler does something unexpected. any ideas would be appreciated!
  11. I'm a big fan of poster calendars for planning purposes, since you can see a whole year (calendar or academic) at a glance. However, I have come to realize what I really need is 18 months at a glance -- the current half-year, plus the next two half-years. The reason is there are things for which you need to see the calendar year (planning vacation requests at work, etc.) and things for which you need to see the academic year (coordinating school schedules and such). My thought is that the perfect system would be to use 6-month at a glance poster calendars, but these are very hard to come by. Alternatively I can buy two of a particular type of calendar (calendar year or academic year), one for the current year and one for the coming year, but the timing of the release of the new calendars is always well past the time I want them. Currently I have a 2013 year-at-a-glance poster calendar. I can get the first half of 2014 by purchasing an academic year poster calendar and chop it in half. But I will want the 2nd half of 2014 around August 2013, and NO ONE releases any calendar (2014 calendar year or 2014/15 academic year) until the final quarter of 2013. In addition I hate wasting half of each calendar I subsequently buy. Any thoughts/ideas/resources you can think of? Anyone know of any place I can get a poster calendar designed for a custom date range? Most of what I'm finding online are instructions for setting custom date ranges for computer applications like Outlook (not what I need).
  12. I just downloaded Big Book 1. There seems to be a lot of choices! I'm not clear how to work through the lessons. >Should I go through in page number order, flipping through the sections as I go? >How long do you spend on LL each day or each week? I've printed out the introductory stuff and the first 2 lessons and put them into their tabs in a binder. But I'm sorta stuck there. :/
  13. Am I missing anything? After researching and talking with a lot of you the past week, I have finally come up with what we are doing this year! Let me know if you see any holes please: 5 yo K Math: Saxon/FIAR L/A: Copybooks from Memoria Press & FLL Vol. 1 Reading: 100 Easy lessons/Realouds Art: FIAR/our one day homeschool co-op Science: FIAR/our one day homeschool co-op Social Studies: FIAR History: FIAR/CC Memory Work Latin: (Only if she's ready) Prima Latina Bible: FIAR/Realouds CC Memory Work every morning 7 yo 2nd Math: Saxon/FIAR L/A: Writing for Excellence (PeaceHill) & FLL Vol. 1 Reading: 100 Easy lessons/Realouds Art: FIAR/our one day homeschool co-op Science: FIAR/our one day homeschool co-op Social Studies: FIAR History: FIAR/CC Memory Work Latin: Prima Latina Bible: FIAR/Realouds CC Memory Work every morning Our 3 yo will just be observing and involved when she wants to be :)
  14. Hi All! I would LOVE to hear from some of you with experience how you break down your homeschooling time for a kindergartner...AND if you use Classical Conversations, how you tie the CC material in with everything else you're teaching. I have a long list of subjects I want to begin teaching my daughter (who just turned 5), but it's pretty overwhelming when I sit down and try to plan out how each day will look. I want to start each day with Calendar Time and spend about 20 minutes on all the calendar stuff, weather, lunar phase, etc., tying in some writing exercises. I think I have a pretty solid plan for that part. But I also want to teach: Phonics/Reading Math Handwriting History Geography Science Art/Music Memory Work Do you teach some subjects only two or three times a week, and others you teach every day? Is there a golden equation for how much time to spend each day total, then how to break it up per subject (e.g. no more than ___ hour(s) total per day, broken up into no more than __ separate subjects, and spread out over __ amount of time.) Also, we will be doing Classical Conversations on our own at home, following the materials used for that. And I'm wondering if I should just lump all the CC stuff into one category called "Memory Work," focusing strictly on the memorization of those items and not trying to turn it into a full history lesson, geography lesson, etc. Your thoughts are very much appreciated and anticipated! :) All the best, Hope
  15. I have two questions about scheduling: 1. Do you spend separate times during the day on the 3rs and then the program content--geography and science. We always start with Bible and read-alouds, but I've been thinking about splitting that up to. So I guess my question is how do you schedule your day to fit everything in? 2. The other thing, is that I'm way behind this year. Background: Due to an unexpected high-risk pregnancy, and bed-rest and lots of other things (we are newly living in a small village in Brazil), I'm only on week 11. We started school this Monday and then dd got very sick with flu so we may start back up tomorrow. This semester we will be moving (hopefully within the next couple weeks), we will be hosting a couple from the U.S. for most of February, and then we have to move to the capital city at the beginning of March (at 7 months pregnant to be able to be close to a good hospital for when the baby gets here). So here's the question: I would like to finish ECC so that I can start CtG next year (August), but I don't know how to schedule/what to cut out. Do I try to do each country for only a week, what do I cut out? Honestly, I'm stumped, I just don't know what to do! My goals for this year was to strengthen my 4th graders geography and give her a good year with that, with my 1st grader it was to familiarize him with God's world but not in-depth. Any suggestions would be great to try to accomplish this goal, and I need to get rid of this guilty feeling....
  16. It's all here on my blog! Go on over and have a peek :auto: :)
  17. How do you schedule your weeks? Do you do 2 days each of MM and MEP (alternating) and one day of Miquon? Or do you do a little Miquon each day on top of one of the other two? I don't plan on lining up any of the program contents... Do you think that will be ok? Or would it confuse the kids? Also, since MM and MEP are both complete programs, how long did it take to finish both? If you alternate days, did you change the pacing (1 MEP lesson per day, 1-2 pages of MM a day) in order to finish in a year? Lastly, how long does it take a student to go through all of the Miquon books? I read somewhere that it's roughly 2 books a year, but I've also read that some kids finish Miquon before starting another program (which suggests that they finish it faster?). I know Miquon is discovery math, and the pacing is really up to the child, but I just want to get an idea of how long others have taken to complete the program. Thanks for helping this newbie out!
  18. After going round and round about what to do when my third wheel (aka my wonderful son) rolls into our homeschool this fall, discovering that no packaged programs pleased me in their entirety or fit my budget, I am revisiting my original position, which was to follow The Well Trained Mind, but perhaps even more closely than we have been. I'll have a K'er, 2nd grader, 4th grader. I'm considering using all Peace Hill Press curriculum - SOTW 4, FLL 2 & 4, WWE 2 & 4, along with CLE Math and chem/physics curriculum TBA (we have to combine that year to stay on cycle). Maybe the new Olive Branch Bible curriculum from Peace Hill, too. ...So if you use TWTM approach (including most of their materials and recommendations) with multiple children in the grammar stage, what is your schedule like? I'm planning to combine your suggestions with the SOTW/literature schedule that's free on House of Classical Learning (thanks to a previous brainstorming thread I started where someone suggested that!).
  19. We've been using WTM since I started with my oldest 2 years ago. This fall, I'll be bringing my son into the mix. I'd like to have him do more of a self-directed kindergarten like my middle child did, but his personality wants more interactivity and structure, so I'm wondering how to divvy up instructional time between the three of them, since none are really at ages where they can do a whole lot independently apart from reading. I'll be using SOTW 4 with my oldest (4th grade) and am thinking of dismissing the other two from school an hour early each day, so I can do that. After scouring the forums to research it (SOTW 4 is designed for upper elementary & middle school), I've decided to just not to do history with my younger two (I've had my now early first grader doing SOTW 3 with us this year and it's been a stretch, so basically I just make her listen to the reading and answer a few questions orally - sometimes she does the coloring sheet or copies her older sister's mapwork). But even if I it do that, I'm still not sure how to juggle the other subjects. I can keep them together for science, but for language arts and math, they will all be at their own levels. I am using CLE math for the older two, as it has been working great, so it's mostly the language arts and Kindergarten instruction that I'm concerned about. I wish I could have my oldest do LA more independently since she is gifted in that area, but CLE LA is what we have now and I don't care for it. The other LA programs are more hands-on, so not sure what do with the younger ones while I do that with her, as I don't want to shorten the school day that much with my 2nd grader. ...So what ways have any of you figured out how to balance instruction time with independent work using WTM or MFW or another classical type curriculum with this set of ages? That's another dilemma I have - whether to keep with WTM or use more of a pre-planned program - Does MFW spell out what to do with each age group while working with the other?
  20. We have been going through SOTW 1 with DS since last January. We LOVE it, but I can't believe how long it's taking us to get through it. We work on it MWFs and do about a chapter a week, including a few of the extra reading as well (he's 5th grade now, so he needs more). We we only be on Chapter 26 by the end of this month and I REALLY want to get to the middle ages. (my favorite time period):D But, I'm also wondering what I'm going to have to change to get us through the book at a reasonable pace since he'll be doing even more reading as we continue. So, how do you schedule SOTW? Do you do more than one chapter a week? Are you including any of the extra activities/readings as directed in the activity guides? I won't be skipping anything since he loves history so much and is enjoy the studies, I'm just really concerned that we don't get behind even further.
  21. We have seven children. Some of what we did with our 2 oldest children, when they were younger, was a classical approach, but we've sort of fallen away from it (life got busier!) and I want to get back on track. Our children are 17yog (doing online highschool now), 13yog (quite clever), 10yob (a little behind), 6yob (just starting to read some simple phonetic words), 4yob, 2yob, 9mog. I have an idea of what curriculum I want to use for everyone, but I am overwhelmed with how to schedule it all in now that I have 7 children. Can any of you parents with several children please share with me how (on earth!) you fit it all in? Aside from the three R's, History, Geography, and Science, I also dream of teaching them piano (I have my Gr.8), Latin, French, and maybe one other language. We are doing some school everyday, but I don't feel that we get nearly as much accomplished as I could if we had a more organized schedule. So if any of you amazing parents who manage more than the average family have any suggestions or can share your schedule, it would be very much appreciated.
  22. In an effort to try to get organized in a fashion that works with all the new hats I have been wearing recently, I have concluded that I need to change the way I'm doing it now. Currently I'm using the online homeschoolskedtrack.com system. I spent an enormous amount of time putting in data and devising a schedule for each course/student. The boys can print out a daily schedule to see what they need to accomplish. Unfortunately, we are getting behind in some subjects because I'm just not as available as I need to be. Nan mentioned "chunking" at one time, and I'm trying to put together something like that. I would like to give the boys a set of assignments (large chunks) that must be done by a certain deadline. Nan mentioned something about using note cards. How does one actually implement this method (or something similar)? How do you "check up" on the work? What drawbacks do you see?
  23. Next year will be my first year officially homeschooling both my children ds8 who will be doing bigger hearts and dd4 who will be in little hearts and I'm having a really tough time coming up with a schedule. I feel like I'll have to spend so much one on one time with ds because he has learning disablilites and needs almost everything presented one on one. What kinds of things should my daughter be doing while I'm working with my son? How do you guys plan your days with more than one child? I just don't want my dd to be bored or to get lost in the shuffle.
  24. I have been asking a lot of scheduling questions lately, I know, I'm sorry. I was just wondering how effective this schedule might be. MONDAY: 9-11- Math 11-11:55- Italian 12-12:55- British Literature 1:30-2:25- New Testament Survey TUESDAY: 9-11 English 11-11:55 New Testament Survey 12-12:55- Italian 1:30-2:25- British Lit 6-bed- study WEDNESDAY: 9-11- History 11-11:55- British Lit 12-12:55- New Testament Survey 1:30-2:25- Italian 6-bed- study THURSDAY: 9-11- Science 11-11:55- Italian 12-12:55- British Lit 1:30-2:25- New Test. Survey 6-bed study FRIDAY: Make-up day, catch up on any core subject assignments not finished on assigned day, test, quiz day (not every Friday, just whenever done with unit). The studies from 6 to bed isn't a strict thing, just so I can stay on my toes and not forget what I learned about the core subjects since I'll be doing them blocked. Has anyone else used a similar method and how did that turn out? Thanks for putting up with all my questions, this website and all the people on it are God sent. God bless you!
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