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Please Help, thinking I HAVE to switch to a boxed curriculum


tricia
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I can't believe I'm going in this direction!!:auto: But alas, I have an 11 year old daughter who totally NEEDS structure. More than I, or her many brothers and sisters can give her!! Meaning for the most part all of my children are very eclectic, artistic, imaginative, etc., and could not, would not, go for a pre built curriculum!! Except this child, well, actually I do have another just like her but she survived our homeschool nicely and went on to college!! So, speaking of boxed curriculums. Which one would you suggest for a highly motivated, highly structured, loves self learning/teaching child. One that would pretty much let her go on auto pilot without mom looking over her shoulder. One that perhaps has a nice daily check off type schedule she could use to keep her on track.

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I would say something by Alpha Omega like their LifePacks, which come in a box. There are mini books that the child reads independently, and then takes the quizes, answers the questions, etc. They also have a computer-based independent program called Switched On Schoolhouse. That would work if your child likes the computer. I am actually thinking about using the computer program for science for my daughter. She is an independent learner also. My compromise is maybe the one subject. Anyway, I hear that Alpha Omega works for many families.

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Sonlight has a nice daily checkoff schedule. Oak Meadow has a nice weekly schedule.

 

I like Sonlight for Cores K-7. I do NOT like the high school level Cores at all. I dumped Core 100 and am using Oak Meadow US History instead. I'm going to finish Core 300, but I will not use it again. I'm switching to Oak Meadow for history, English, and biology at the high school level.

 

I really don't want to go through SL Cores 6 and 7 again. It just wasn't that long ago that I went through them and I don't feel like going there again. I'm probably going to switch my youngest over to Oak Meadow next year as well. My 9th grader is already using Oak Meadow for most of her subjects.

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Well depends on what you want.

 

If your looking for a Non Christian program

Maybe Calvert. There is some teacher prep but from about 6th grade on its more independent.

I haven't used Oak Meadow but some say here its pretty self paced.

K12 can be for grade 6th and up , we are using K12 this year with my 11 yr old and she is pretty independant with it.

 

If you don't mind Christian curriculum:

Christian Light( can't get any more self paced, independant and easy to use than this) as well as Ace School of Tomorrow.

There is Alpha Omega and as much as I try to want to like this curriculum I can't. We tried this when I first started homeschooling and after a few days my daughter ran crying. I can't recommend it, really.

I know it works for some but I think very few. Alpha Omega has great marketing but the curriculum really needs to be revamped. Of course though it may work better for your daughter and she may like it. Who knows.

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Thanks everyone. I too used Alpha Omega way back in the day when I first began homeschooling. That was 23 years ago. And after 12 kids I only used AO for my first. I too hated it. But then that's how I am. I thought it was dry, dry, dry. But, my 11 year old though loves to just run through and check things off. Get her done kind of girl. So I really don't think she would mind dry. I've never heard of Oak Meadow but will check it out. I considered SOS but we only have a mac and that would require purchasing another computer plus the curriculum. Ugh, why can't she just enjoy notebooking, coloring, and pasting things like the other kids!!! I've also considered Christian Liberty Press considering I have almost all the books anyway and would basically only have to buy the answer keys and tests.

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I used Sonlight 5 for my oldest dd--who sounds alot like your dd. She did the reading--followed the directions herself. It involved alot of research and worksheets which she loved. Also, had a point system for projects. Each project earned different amounts of points and by the end of the year--she was to have a certain number of points. The projects were easy for her and she did almost all of them without too much help from me. She loved it and it was a very smooth year for us. At the time I had three children learning to read and a young teenager that was driving us all to distraction, so she really needed something that she could get to without always waiting for me.

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My older DD sounds a lot like yours and she loves Beautiful Feet (she loves to read). She follows the guide, completing the assignments on her own and we discuss a couple times per week. We haven't used SL (BF is so much more reasonably priced) but we use their reading lists and I think DD would love using their guides. She's also doing great with CLE for Math, LA & Reading. CLE Sunrise Editions are open & go and very well structured. The material is not dry at all - I even find it interesting to browse through her workbooks.

 

Next year we're going to use BJU DVD's for science & LA. As I said, my DD is a big reader and not a huge fan of multimedia learning, but I hear so many wonderful things about Mrs. Vick on this forum that I think it will be worth a try.

 

My younger DD is using SOS History on a Mac (she loves multimedia and hates history so I needed to bend to her learning style). We're running windows in emulation and it works great. SOS history would not be my preferred choice, but she is learning and retaining quite a bit since it matches her best method of learning. SOS online grading and planning is outstanding! I put in dates for our school year, deleted the holidays and the Thursdays when we go to Classical Conversations, then SOS assigned all of the schoolwork into fairly equal lessons for each school day. Very cool. We had a couple sick days so I needed to adjust her assignments and that was easy too. And my DD loves tracking her progress with the online grading. I don't know about the curriculum for other levels or subjects, but the administration is excellent.

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If I were looking for a semi-independent all in one for ~11 yo, I would consider HOD's Creation to Christ (or maybe even Preparing Hearts). Each guide they come out with will have an increase in the amount of independent work - so CTC is probably your best best. You can look at a sample week and get a good feel for if it would be a good fit and if it is independent enough. I have not continued with HOD because I wanted all my dc in the same Bible/history/science, but if I ever had a need to plan something different for just one child, I would consider HOD again.

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I went to mostly textbooks for my youngest because she thrives with that, and I have heavy responsibilities outside of homeschooling. It's working beautifully.

 

This year she's doing CLE math, reading, social studies (geography), and reading, then Classical Conversations Grammar/Writing and Spelling Workout. We're also plugging through several Progeny Press guides orally, which gives us a little one-on-one time.

 

Next year it will be the same with the exception of BJUP History 7 instead of CLE.

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What if you just pulled all her materials together in a workbox type system or work folder type system, and typed up a checklist for her?

 

I was about to click "Submit Reply" but I can't end a post without saying I love K12! :lol: It's not completely independent at age 11 though. My oldest dd is almost 11, and she's mostly independent with K12, but still needs some one-on-one instruction/tutoring with me for a few things.

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One of the main goals of Heart of Dakota's middle school courses is to foster and support the student's independence. The first of a four year study sequence (based on a four year trip through history) is ready now. The second year is being tweaked and will be ready for next year. HOD leans heavily towards the methods of Charlotte Mason. One of her goals was to have the child doing their own readings by the early logic years (middle school). It's not completely independent. There is some interaction with the parent but the guide is written in a way that allows the student to take ownership of their program and complete their work mostly on their own.

 

We love HOD. It may be an option for you if you like a literature based curriculum and if you are o.k. with starting out with a study of the Ancient time period. An 11 year old may or may not require the Extension Package. Some are using the basic package with a child older than yours and are having a great experience. It's a very full program if you do everything. The science for that year is Biology.

 

http://www.heartofdakota.com/hearts-for-him.php - an overview page

 

http://www.heartofdakota.com/hearts-for-him-packages.php - the books

Edited by Donna T.
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I also have an 11yo daughter who really, really needs structure, so she uses a prepackaged curriculum (Calvert). She struggles with ADD and fine motor delays, and having a lesson manual checklist helps tremendously in that regard. She needs to know exactly what's required, what's coming next and when she's done for the day. She's also old enough now to work with me in figuring things out. She prefers traditional textbooks and workbooks, though it wouldn't have been my first choice.

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Another very happy K12 user here. We just switched to the VAVA, and it has been a blessing. Having the outside accountability is really helping me push my oldest to do his best more effectively (not to shabby with the others, either).

 

My 7yo dd is pretty independent with K12 (to a fault, in some cases). Starting in 6th grade, there is a LOT more independence (or can be). I really see the value in the student pages for history, science, language arts and math at this level -- because it's like a check-list. Do A, then B, then C, complete exercises pg. X... and it self-re-schedules as well. So, if you complete extra, or you don't do a subject the schedule gets updated appropriately (she can also see at a glance how she is doing, and when she'll finish assuming she remains on track -- a VERY motivating feature for kids who like to "get it done." Plus, they provide plenty of opportunities for enrichment.

 

Do I still need to help/oversee my oldest? Yes. He occasionally needs help with math, I need to double check that work was actually DONE (not skipped because he didn't want to do that, and work out appropriate compromises (math today is really review/simple/well comprehended, he can skip to the assessment kind of thing).

 

I have no experience with any of the other recommendations here, K12 was (and still is) the best solution for my family.

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If you are from Wisconsin, I think there are several public cyber charter schools that use K12 according to the K12 web site:

 

 

http://k12.com/curriculum_and_products/participating_schools_in_wisconsin/

 

My ds uses K12 and we love it. For an older child, I believe it would be less mom intensive and possibly even offer online classes. It is a thorough and classical like curriculum. It is a public school though which I rather like at this point since I like the teacher support, available tutoring, and guidance. Our school also offers quite a bit of flexibility, but they do expect about 10% of each subject to be completed each month unless there is an IEP plan or the like in place. However, we are able to work 24/7. We just have to log in our attendance each school day which takes all of 1 minute;).

 

If you consider this option, then, of course, I recommend asking detailed questions about expectations, testing, assignments, flexibility, etc.

 

P.S. You would still have to supervise that dc is completing assignments which is easy to do at a few clicks of the mouse:)

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If I were looking for a semi-independent all in one for ~11 yo, I would consider HOD's Creation to Christ (or maybe even Preparing Hearts). Each guide they come out with will have an increase in the amount of independent work - so CTC is probably your best best. You can look at a sample week and get a good feel for if it would be a good fit and if it is independent enough. I have not continued with HOD because I wanted all my dc in the same Bible/history/science, but if I ever had a need to plan something different for just one child, I would consider HOD again.

 

 

I am using this curriculum/level this year and I agree. It is wonderful, very Christ centered and very easy to be completely independent. Easy to check off and go! I think she would love it!

 

Michelle

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What if you just pulled all her materials together in a workbox type system or work folder type system, and typed up a checklist for her?

 

I've done this before. It's a lot of work too. The only thing with this idea is that I feel like I need tangible evidence of her learning. She really hates having to come up with a good narration of the book through writing and drawing. I'm not real comfortable just having her read her work and not write about what she is learning thereby showing me she is learning something. That is what is pulling me to a more scheduled, type curriculum with texts, tests, and so forth. Does that make sense?

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