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3 weeks in and my lesson plans are useless!


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I am now finished with our first 3 weeks of school. I did lesson plans for 6 weeks but after the first few days I realized they are useless. My 4th grader is doing the same work in everything except math as my 8th grader. My 8th grader is doing well but I think he might need challenged more. And then there is my 3rd grader that is so far behind in math that I'm thinking I need to go back to 1st grade with him. He doesn't know how to subtract at all if you have to borrow! And his reading comprehension is nonexistent. WWE takes forever with me having to read the passage twice usually. The only good thing is that he is doing better in Latin than both his brothers!

 

So obviously I need to change a few things. I've been thinking about using FIAR for my 3rd grader but I'm not sure about going back to 1st grade math with him or just start 2nd grade math after we finish learning subtraction. Anyone have any ideas?

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Get a workbook from Walmart or make up your own math problems to print or write them on a board if you have one. Have your 3rd grader do 4or 5 subtraction problems a day. Then do what ever else is inhospitable 3rd grade curriculum. After a couple of weeks, he should have it down with no problem.

 

Don't drill it to death all day instead of moving through new concepts (assuming he is picking up the new concepts and enjoying it). If you get to something else that needs remediation, do the same thing. You can take a day to just review the concept, but then just throw in a few problems a day until it is mastered.

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My youngest daughter (3rd grade also) was having problems multiplying with two digits. I, personally, was getting no where. I told my husband about the problem. He sat down with her and before the hour was up she understood all that had been lost before.

 

I have found, in our home school journey, sometimes they do not understand my explanation of things. Sometimes it takes someone else to connect the dots. Maybe dh, or a friend who is awesome in math, could provide another way of explaining the problems.

 

Good luck!

 

Marsha

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And then there is my 3rd grader that is so far behind in math that I'm thinking I need to go back to 1st grade with him. He doesn't know how to subtract at all if you have to borrow! And his reading comprehension is nonexistent. WWE takes forever with me having to read the passage twice usually.

 

You said the 'b' word! :lol: You have the Math Mammoth package, right? Pull out the section on subtraction with regrouping. I believe it was somewhere in grade 2 (can't remember if it's A or B - there is one chapter that has 2-digit and one chapter with 3-digit, so get the 2-digit one). Pull out your manipulatives if you need to and walk him through that first chapter where regrouping is taught. Is he understanding place value? If not, go back even farther (1B has a good chapter on place value). Just hit the sections that he needs. No need to do everything in that grade level. So do the place value chapter if you need to, then come back to subtraction with regrouping. He might just understand it a bit better.

 

For WWE, are you doing 1 or 2 with him? WWE1 actually had some pretty hard passages. Back up even farther if you need to. Read him a picture book and have him tell back what happened. Another idea is to use WWE1, but stop whereever each answer is and ask the question at that point. If you need to read one sentence and then ask a question, that's ok! Once he can do that, start reading 2 sentences before asking the question. Then increase the number until he's able to do the whole passage before answering questions. It is a process! Some of the passages in WWE1 were awful. For example, week 2 - Rumpelstiltskin. DS had no clue what I was talking about when reading that. :lol: That was the most painful narration ever. It got better though. I know I had to read Rumpelstiltskin at least a couple times, maybe more. Then I had to drill down to the exact answer to the question and just read that sentence. If he's having trouble answering ALL questions, I don't read the whole thing again. I just read the parts that have the answers. As he gets better, I'll increase the amount I read (like read a whole paragraph when the answer is in the middle of the paragraph). Again though, we worked up to that. So start slow. Don't expect him to do it by the book. He's expected to do it by the book on week 36, not week 1. ;)

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I've finally figured out what works for me. I just create a skeleton plan for each week of the semester, print it out and put it in page protectors. Then I can check off if we completed that session as indicated make notes to adjust it for the next week. It does keep me organized, but I don't feel lost if one area needs more attention the next week or is missed. I love working this way because I have a good overview of what "should" be covered for the semester and it provides the accountability that I need. Yet, I don't have that "locked in" feeling because I can always go back to the weeks and check off as we complete that section. It's our fifth year homeschooling and I finally have a system that I like (including the workboxes--they have saved me from perpetual whine-a-thons!!!)

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I am now finished with our first 3 weeks of school. I did lesson plans for 6 weeks but after the first few days I realized they are useless. My 4th grader is doing the same work in everything except math as my 8th grader. My 8th grader is doing well but I think he might need challenged more. And then there is my 3rd grader that is so far behind in math that I'm thinking I need to go back to 1st grade with him. He doesn't know how to subtract at all if you have to borrow! And his reading comprehension is nonexistent. WWE takes forever with me having to read the passage twice usually. The only good thing is that he is doing better in Latin than both his brothers!

 

So obviously I need to change a few things. I've been thinking about using FIAR for my 3rd grader but I'm not sure about going back to 1st grade math with him or just start 2nd grade math after we finish learning subtraction. Anyone have any ideas?

 

Is your third grader your 7yo? That's pretty young for 3rd grade. It'd be appropriate for him to do second grade work, or even some first grade, age-wise. Esp for comprehension--maybe he needs a little time. If you are used to a very advanced sibling, it can make the next one seem more behind.

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Wait, it's not called borrowing anymore? Where's the smack my forehead smilie?:D

 

I think everyone had a lot of good ideas. DS#4 will be 8 on Friday, so he is quite young. And yes, his older brother is advanced, so I agree with the pp about him seeming to be "behind".

 

Vera, I have felt that even MM is too advanced for Joey. We have been on simple subtraction for 3 weeks now. But I will print out MM and give it a try. And yes, WWE1...most of the questions get the response, "I don't remember" for the answer.:glare:

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Just a comment about MM - it is advanced - and if you don't start with it at MM1, some kids will falter with the mental math/conceptual approach. If you have the full package - then do BACK to whatever he's struggling with and get it down. I had to back my kids up a full year of 2 from Saxon when we switched, and now my oldest is doing MM 6 and pre- algebra from another curriculum at the same time...

 

If you already taught all of MM 2 and your kiddo isn't getting it, then I'd try a different approach for that concept...but remember math understanding doesn't go at a steady pace...kids get "hung up", then "get it and move on"...we as mom's have to be patient.

Erin

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I don't know if this will help at all but we do MM for my dd6 and dd8. However they do pretty well and I didn't plan on having them do anything other than MM since it's working BUT I have decided twice a week to print off something fun like multipication color by number for my 3rd grader. For my 1st grader I'm having her do subtraction/addition color by number as well as which number is bigger coloring activities. Just tossing THOSE additional activities has given myself and both of my dc confidence in their math skills.

 

I do a planner/scheduler but it's not which lesson/page sort of planner EXCEPT for history and science...everything else is just put in by subject and any goals I have for that day...which I'll add the day of or a couple days prior...and it's working perfect for me! It helps me stay on the right path too. We just open WWE, FLL and Math and just do the next thing...but to know that I can mark COMPLETE on the planner makes me feel like we accomplished something in that subject :)

 

I just bought some different math manipulatives for the kids and plan on having them use those along with their abacus. Does your ds have things to use hands on for his math? My dd8 (3rd grade) would STRUGGLE big time if she didn't have her manipulatives as well as her math journal for writing problems out. She is TERRIBLE at doing ANY sort of math in her head! So for now I'm just having her work each problem out and allowing this to be GREAT for my standards. I know alot think that memorizing the tables is important...and I do too but I think the basic concepts needs to be mastered FIRST as well as having them work on the tables, but not make it so they HAVE to memorize them. And it's naturally came to my dd8 on knowing what 0x8= and what 4x10= and so on.

 

With my 1st grader I've also thrown in some coloring by number pages and have told her to color all Even numbers purple and all Odd numbers blue..she loves this sort of thing too.

 

For MM I have the entire first level printed that each of my dc are on 3-hole punched in a binder. They know when the timer is set (usually 35min) they are free to open the binder and pick ANY page to begin. They don't have to complete the entire page but they have to work for the entire 35min on math...so they can do 1 problem from this page and 3 problems from that page and so on. We won't print the next part of the level and put into the binder until all pages are mostly completed and they pass the review pages :) As for quiz/review pages...I plan on doing those every 2 months just to get a view on where they are.

 

Just some ideas. Hope some of it was helpful!

Edited by mamaofblessings
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Wait, it's not called borrowing anymore? Where's the smack my forehead smilie?:D

 

You've apparently not been reading enough of Bill's posts. :lol: Go read Liping Ma (if Decatur has a net library of some sort, it's available as an ebook - I was able to "check it out" that way from the Athens library).

 

Vera, I have felt that even MM is too advanced for Joey. We have been on simple subtraction for 3 weeks now. But I will print out MM and give it a try.

 

It depends on where in MM you go. If you place him correctly, he might be ok. You just can't throw him into MM3 if he doesn't have a conceptual understanding of things like regrouping. Go back as far as you need to. And you don't even have to use the worksheets necessarily. Read the instructions yourself and learn the material first, then teach it on a white board. You just need to build that foundation before moving on.

 

And yes, WWE1...most of the questions get the response, "I don't remember" for the answer.:glare:

 

I've had many of those days. :glare: It did get better toward the end though. :D

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