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IEW vs LLATL and possible joining into Classical Conversations.


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I work in the evenings, and can't get all of our homework done in 5 hours for all three of my kids. it's more like 8 hrs and we aren't getting piano and art in.  Ages 9,7, and prek4 

 

I've heard so many good things about both. My ds who usually hates writing, is doing ok with LLATL. (FINALLY) I needed something that covered everything and lite this year. He's doing  the orange book which for their levels is usually 4th grade.    But, I am considering going into Classical Conversations essentials this sept year for my ds. He's usually a bit slow and it was because of a medical issue that was resolved, and am afraid of spending more money on something that won't help him and I. I am trying to catch him up on writing. Cost is a huge factor and time trying to get them all working at a normal pace is killing me. If I go IEW, then it will plow another $439.90 in my budget, but LLATL is more cost effective. I gather IEW is writing only? Disgruntled but my learning curve REALLY needs open and go, where it doesn't rely on my knowing spelling rules, or grammar rules, writing rules, and teaches both teacher and student really easily, etc.  

 

This year he is doing LLATL and Rod and Staff spelling 3 (He repeated all of 3rd grade), abeka readers, (he already did all of OPGTTR, WWE 1,2 FLL 1,2 Easy Grammar 3 last year)

 

The choices for next year are:

 

LLATL Rod and Staff spelling and llatl reading material and abeka readers

 

OR

 

IEW, plus this stuff which I have never seen before.  

 

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I'm confused by your second option. Why are there so many links? 

 

edited: I like LLATL at those levels but you may need to supplement with a writing curriculum, at least at some stage in the future. 

 

IEW and LLATL serve different purposes so it's not really a case of LLATL vs IEW as in your title. Maybe LLATL plus IEW? But I wouldn't recommend IEW in your situation. Your oldest may be ready for 

"Jump In" in a year or two. Very straightforward to use and the writing process is broken down into manageable steps. 

 

http://shop.apologia.com/jump-in/159-jump-in-2-book-set.html

 

 

 

 

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I am an Essentials tutor with CC.  Essentials will cover grammar through the EEL Guide and writing through the IEW history-based writing curriculum. There are options in the EEL Guide for both spelling and mechanics, but this would not (likely) be covered in your afternoon classes.  (Your tutor may be able to give you guidance on those elements of the program.)  I personally don't care for the way the EEL guide handles spelling and mechanics, so I ignore those parts of the guide entirely.  We use CLE LA to review grammar and to cover mechanics and spelling.  

 

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If you choose to enroll in Classical Conversations, you don't have to purchase everything they recommend. You will need the Essentials Guide, but my Gear Pages were included with the guide, so I'm not sure why you have that set as an extra cost. For the IEW portion of CC Essentials, you should only need the History book (next year is Cycle 1, so IEW's Ancient History book). Teaching Writing Structure & Style should be something your CC community has that you could borrow if needed. Also, your Essentials tutor should have an evening or two set aside for all the Essentials parents to get together and watch the TWSS videos together. I wouldn't purchase them. Also, many libraries have the TWSS videos to check out. Mine does, and it's a very small library.

 

As for the rest of the stuff you have listed, I would maybe get the Trivium Tables and maybe Our Mother Tongue, but that's it. I bought some of the stuff on the list you have there, and am very disappointed in most of it. The flashcards were a waste of money. You can buy ANY flashcards if you need them, and you can do any spelling that you want. The actual spelling lists are in the Essentials Guide, so if you want to use their lists, you will already have them.

 

Good luck in your decision.

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Having done CC Essentials for two years (and loving it), I can confirm that you don't need all that stuff. You need the EEL guide, the English Grammar Trivium Table, the multiplication flash cards (at least we really appreciated having a set that goes up to 15 X 15), and the newly revised IEW Ancients book (the student book only - we never needed the teacher book) for next year. Essentials is a lot of work for parents and is very time intensive in the beginning for the student. HOWEVER, I know my grammar & feel confident teaching writing for the first time as a result of this class. It is very solid and I heartily recommend it, but only if you are willing to commit to it. I haven't used LLATL, but from what I've read, it is pretty much the exact opposite end of the spectrum. I love the vocabulary included with the IEW history-based theme books, but I didn't use the spelling or mechanics instruction included with EEL. My child is a natural speller, so we had stopped spelling instruction two years ago, and we covered mechanics briefly the summer before beginning Essentials.

 

All that said, we won't be re-enrolling for a third-tour next year as is planned by CC for logistical reasons. I will go back to Essentials with my 4th daughter when she is 9-11 years of age.

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I'm confused by your second option. Why are there so many links? 

 

edited: I like LLATL at those levels but you may need to supplement with a writing curriculum, at least at some stage in the future. 

 

IEW and LLATL serve different purposes so it's not really a case of LLATL vs IEW as in your title. Maybe LLATL plus IEW? But I wouldn't recommend IEW in your situation. Your oldest may be ready for 

"Jump In" in a year or two. Very straightforward to use and the writing process is broken down into manageable steps. 

 

http://shop.apologia.com/jump-in/159-jump-in-2-book-set.html

 

Do you find LLATL lean on writing? I find it lean on spelling, that's why I supplemented with rod and staff spelling. All the other links were a reference to all the other things they would possibly cover in Essentials Class in Classical Conversations. I have no idea how detailed or thorough they would be with their choices. I thought they used Shurley Grammar instead of Essentials of English Language in classical conversations, I guess not? I don't know what I needed to buy I was just hit copy and paste from the essentials list. LLATL doesn't have the same type of composing elements of some other curriculum and vice versa. DS's orange curriculum should be getting to a journal writing, poem, and research paper writing assignment. He's already done the News article summary activity. 

 

By the way, thanks for all your responses so far. I am scared for him to totally clam up for Essentials class. I don't know if he could take the rigor. I want him like writing. He balked at writing the news article summary. but also afraid of him falling too far behind. I went with something lighter and less rigorous to help him.  He may possibly have dyslexia. He just received his Irlen corrective lenses and needs another adjustment. 

 

The reason why I said vs. is because I don't have time for 2 curriculums. It would be give him LLATL and readers, rod and staff spelling , and abeka readers, or do CC essentials. 

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Do you find LLATL lean on writing? I find it lean on spelling, that's why I supplemented with rod and staff spelling. All the other links were a reference to all the other things they would possibly cover in Essentials Class in Classical Conversations. I have no idea how detailed or thorough they would be with their choices. I thought they used Shurley Grammar instead of Essentials of English Language in classical conversations, I guess not? I don't know what I needed to buy I was just hit copy and paste from the essentials list. LLATL doesn't have the same type of composing elements of some other curriculum and vice versa. DS's orange curriculum should be getting to a journal writing, poem, and research paper writing assignment. He's already done the News article summary activity. 

 

By the way, thanks for all your responses so far. I am scared for him to totally clam up for Essentials class. I don't know if he could take the rigor. I want him like writing. He balked at writing the news article summary. but also afraid of him falling too far behind. I went with something lighter and less rigorous to help him.  He may possibly have dyslexia. He just received his Irlen corrective lenses and needs another adjustment. 

 

The reason why I said vs. is because I don't have time for 2 curriculums. It would be give him LLATL and readers, rod and staff spelling , and abeka readers, or do CC essentials. 

 

Ok, about the list. I am totally ignorant of CC and what they do there. Although judging from your list, it looks really comprehensive :)

 

But to answer your LLATL question..... yes, agree it is light on spelling and once we got further along the series I found it light on writing too. I love the orange book. It is one of my favourite years of LLATL. (I should add that we are doing the green book and I am not sure I am going to continue with it.... but you are a few years off that) 

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Ok, about the list. I am totally ignorant of CC and what they do there. Although judging from your list, it looks really comprehensive :)

 

But to answer your LLATL question..... yes, agree it is light on spelling and once we got further along the series I found it light on writing too. I love the orange book. It is one of my favourite years of LLATL. (I should add that we are doing the green book and I am not sure I am going to continue with it.... but you are a few years off that) 

 

When would be good to supplement writing with LLATL? That kinda stinks. I really didn't want to spend on more supplements. I thought LLATL covered  everything.  I already have Easy Grammar gr.5,6,7 and Spelling Workout a-f and Rod and Staff spelling. I have all the abeka teaching materials for various grades, but not the student workbooks. I also have WWE level 1-4. He REALLY disliked WWE. He's not a big fan of dictation. LLATL is a lot less intense on the dictation than WWE. I really wanted something all in one so that I would be able to stop going from 5 separate subjects and just have 1 English. KWIM? I don't have patience for the Abeka teacher's manual. The paring down Abeka Teachers manual down for one student drives me nuts. But I will do what is the best alternative, I have to get teaching down to 5 hours a day for all three kids. 

 

 

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Having done CC Essentials for two years (and loving it), I can confirm that you don't need all that stuff. You need the EEL guide, the English Grammar Trivium Table, the multiplication flash cards (at least we really appreciated having a set that goes up to 15 X 15), and the newly revised IEW Ancients book (the student book only - we never needed the teacher book) for next year. Essentials is a lot of work for parents and is very time intensive in the beginning for the student. HOWEVER, I know my grammar & feel confident teaching writing for the first time as a result of this class. It is very solid and I heartily recommend it, but only if you are willing to commit to it. I haven't used LLATL, but from what I've read, it is pretty much the exact opposite end of the spectrum. I love the vocabulary included with the IEW history-based theme books, but I didn't use the spelling or mechanics instruction included with EEL. My child is a natural speller, so we had stopped spelling instruction two years ago, and we covered mechanics briefly the summer before beginning Essentials.

 

All that said, we won't be re-enrolling for a third-tour next year as is planned by CC for logistical reasons. I will go back to Essentials with my 4th daughter when she is 9-11 years of age.

My kid is opposite of yours. And how much "work" is essentials? The rigor scares me. That may be what I need to get my bottom in gear, but at the same time, may be really really intense for my son who takes at least 3 hours to write a paragraph. 

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When would be good to supplement writing with LLATL? That kinda stinks. I really didn't want to spend on more supplements. I thought LLATL covered  everything.  I already have Easy Grammar gr.5,6,7 and Spelling Workout a-f and Rod and Staff spelling. I have all the abeka teaching materials for various grades, but not the student workbooks. I also have WWE level 1-4. He REALLY disliked WWE. He's not a big fan of dictation. LLATL is a lot less intense on the dictation than WWE. I really wanted something all in one so that I would be able to stop going from 5 separate subjects and just have 1 English. KWIM? I don't have patience for the Abeka teacher's manual. The paring down Abeka Teachers manual down for one student drives me nuts. But I will do what is the best alternative, I have to get teaching down to 5 hours a day for all three kids. 

 

Well, I personally would supplement LLATL with a writing program in 5th or 6th grade. A more relaxed homeschooler would do it later. Some Moms would do it earlier. It depends on your goals for your student and your student's ability and willingness. 

 

It sounds like your ds is happy and learning with the LLATL plus R&S spelling plus readers combination. He is young, possibly dyslexic (?) and shown some reluctance in this subject area. You need open and go and have restraints on your time. Why not just continue to use what is working? 

 

However ....... if your no. one priority turns out to be finding the closest thing to an "all in one" language arts program then there's CLE LA plus CLE reading. The good thing is that you can order one or two light units before financially committing to a whole year. 

 

Here's the website: https://www.clp.org/store/browse/31_curriculum

 

Here are the placement tests: https://www.clp.org/store/by_grade/21

 

It wouldn't suit my LLATL kid at all but it might be something to consider. Doing a search on this board will bring up lots of reviews. 

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My kid is opposite of yours. And how much "work" is essentials? The rigor scares me. That may be what I need to get my bottom in gear, but at the same time, may be really really intense for my son who takes at least 3 hours to write a paragraph.

It is a lot of work (60 minutes per day?) in the beginning, but less so the second year. I really like both the rigor and the accountability of having deadlines for papers. You may find that your son rises to the challenge and is motivated by learning in a group setting.
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To the question of how intense is the Essentials coursework, the answer is that it as intense as you need it to be to accomplish your goals for your students. As regards grammar, most of my parents are pretty relaxed with their 4th graders, using this year as a general overview. For my own son, we do the writing (10-20m a day) and we copy one chart (15m) and we diagram/discuss one or two sentences a week (another 10m). As I said, we also do CLE LA for mechanics and spelling and anything else that looks fun or useful, such as homophones or study skills.

 

My experience with tutoring has been that the children, even those who were shy or reluctant, come to love the writing portion. They beg to share their papers every week, and Faces of History is a big deal on our campus. The motivation that provides has been very helpful with my reluctant writer.

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What do you do on the weeks off? We currently spend about 45-60 min on grammar and 30 min on writing. Next year we will be in CC and I'm thinking of adding in W&R and analytical grammar on the weeks. The w&r books I want to use are 20 weeks total so I would need to fit an additional 8 weeks into cc weeks in order to finish.

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 I spent 3+ hours today on LLATL (mostly writing) alone, because of his bad pencil grip and because of him getting frustrated at me for correcting him and because his sisters were so distracting.  He and I were in tears. He also lied about reading his books today and last Friday.  I thought LLATL was so much LIGHTER than all the other stuff I had last year. When it's history or science, my kids get all work together and within 2 hours, we get History and science done no problem. I told them, since we skipped writing and english yesterday, we were doing it first thing. Maybe I am inept at teaching English and Math? My ds seems to not "get"  English and Math quickly or even for the long haul. We are reviewing math facts and memorized preposition lists yet again. I don't know if he has dylexia coupled with Irlen's and if Essentials would just be even more frustrating and overly rigorous. 

 

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I got a chance to go through the essentials guide last week. It's very different from other grammar curriculum. I wouldn't say its a lot of work but the grammar is advance grammar. They diagram sentances and also have a passage a week to correct. Looking at it I think it is teacher intensive. You need the foundations guide, a tin wistel, essentials guide and the iew ancient history book with the teacher's manual. Everything else is optional from what I understand. Most campuses will have a get together to watch the teaching dvds or lend them to you (Also what I was told not first hand experience). The biggest complaint I hear about iew is the formulic writing kids doing the program produce and stifling creative writing but if you have a kid that hates writing a formula might be a good thing. My daughter is not a writer so I'm not really concerned about stifling her creative writing. Creative writing brings both of us to tears at this point I will be happy with her having the ability to create any kind of paper.

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What do you do on the weeks off? We currently spend about 45-60 min on grammar and 30 min on writing. Next year we will be in CC and I'm thinking of adding in W&R and analytical grammar on the weeks. The w&r books I want to use are 20 weeks total so I would need to fit an additional 8 weeks into cc weeks in order to finish.

I'm not sure if this was directed to me, but I'll answer anyway. :)  The first break is over December, and the way we have things set up is that that time is used to prepare for the Faces of History paper (i.e., reading sources and deciding on topics). CC finishes in mid-April, and from that time to August, I'm thinking that we'll just continue writing from key word outlines using history or science passages as source texts.      

 

I have actually been pleasantly surprised how distinctive my students' voices are in their writing, given the admittedly formulaic, 'checklist' approach of IEW.  I look at the stylistic techniques requirements as simply a way to familiarize students with different ways of constructing sentences.  For the kids who really struggle to write something beyond the subject-verb-object construction, the checklist and incremental approach seem to give them the tools they need to move past that.  

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I agree with the others in saying that LLATL and IEW are two totally different animals. I would like to chime in with my experience with LLATL. I hear that some kids don't retain what they learn from this program. My dd not only retains it, but does so well. For her less really is more. But that less actually has more meat that appears on the surface. While traditional programs assign 20-30 sentences to be labeled, LLATL may assign 5. However, there are lessons being taught within the literature passage via copywork and dictation. 

 

The writing is more natural than other writing programs. But it is suggested to use a writing program about upper elem. For that we used Wordsmith and Wordsmith Craftsman. They were thorough but not overwhelming. 

 

I hear complaints about LLATL's spelling. Yes, it is light when you think of 6 words per list. However it is suggested that you pull misspelled words from your child's work to add to his weekly list. If one is not comfy with this then adding a list is a good idea. 

 

How does my child like the program: Well, I have been giving her light duty days because we have been hitting the books hard for a while now. She looked at me with wide eyes, "But what about Language Arts??" Well, you can skip it if you want today. "I WANT to do it." 

 

When you enjoy what you are learning you learn well. When you dread what is put before you, you don't retain as easily. 

 

My older kids used several levels of LLATL. After graduating  and moving on, they knew more than their college professors.  My son-in-law and his brother used this with only Daily Grams for a little while. They have excellent speech, and writing skills. I don't think any of these 5 young adults have suffered. The proof is in the pudding. 

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I forgot the best part of what I was going to post. Today for the lesson on verbs the student to was make a list of verbs and  draw  pictures  for each word. They give their work to another person to see if they can match the verb with the pic. Such a simple lesson, but one I don't think will soon be forgotten. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

It is a lot of work (60 minutes per day?) in the beginning, but less so the second year. I really like both the rigor and the accountability of having deadlines for papers. You may find that your son rises to the challenge and is motivated by learning in a group setting.

 

I think 60 minutes a day equates to 2 hours for my kid...

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I agree with the others in saying that LLATL and IEW are two totally different animals. I would like to chime in with my experience with LLATL. I hear that some kids don't retain what they learn from this program. My dd not only retains it, but does so well. For her less really is more. But that less actually has more meat that appears on the surface. While traditional programs assign 20-30 sentences to be labeled, LLATL may assign 5. However, there are lessons being taught within the literature passage via copywork and dictation. 

 

The writing is more natural than other writing programs. But it is suggested to use a writing program about upper elem. For that we used Wordsmith and Wordsmith Craftsman. They were thorough but not overwhelming. 

 

I hear complaints about LLATL's spelling. Yes, it is light when you think of 6 words per list. However it is suggested that you pull misspelled words from your child's work to add to his weekly list. If one is not comfy with this then adding a list is a good idea. 

 

How does my child like the program: Well, I have been giving her light duty days because we have been hitting the books hard for a while now. She looked at me with wide eyes, "But what about Language Arts??" Well, you can skip it if you want today. "I WANT to do it." 

 

When you enjoy what you are learning you learn well. When you dread what is put before you, you don't retain as easily. 

 

My older kids used several levels of LLATL. After graduating  and moving on, they knew more than their college professors.  My son-in-law and his brother used this with only Daily Grams for a little while. They have excellent speech, and writing skills. I don't think any of these 5 young adults have suffered. The proof is in the pudding. 

 

 

So, technically, you only used LLATL for the reading selections and comprehension? I don't understand why one would need daily grams? I only have easy grammar workbooks not the daily grams.

 

 

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  • 3 weeks later...

So, technically, you only used LLATL for the reading selections and comprehension? I don't understand why one would need daily grams? I only have easy grammar workbooks not the daily grams.

No, I use all of LLATL. My sil's mother felt her sons needed more practice with grammer...they are mathy.

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I work in the evenings, and can't get all of our homework done in 5 hours for all three of my kids… Ages 9,7, and prek4 ...

 

… I am considering going into Classical Conversations essentials this sept year for my ds..

 

...Cost is a huge factor and time trying to get them all working at a normal pace… 

 

Just wanted to preface this with this: no personal experience with CC, just what I have observed from friends participating in our local CC, and what others on this board have said.

 

First, the expense might be more than what you are thinking. My understanding is that CC is now starting to require all children of age to attend; if that is the case, you would be paying for both the 9yo *and* the 7yo to attend.

 

More importantly, I am not quite sure that CC will reduce your workload in the way you are hoping, or will catch-up your student in the way you feel you need to.

 

Families spend 4 days a week helping their students with the memorization and doing the lessons on the schedule that will be then covered in the CC class once a week so that their student is ready for the class. It is more of an accountability for families to keep up, with an additional method of review/presentation of material on the weekly co-op day.

 

For students with a delay of some type, it could be very disheartening to not be at the same place in the material as the other students in the class. It can cause the parent a lot of extra stress trying to stay caught up with the class, esp. if wanting to use other materials during the school week than the programs used in CC. That could possibly increase your time and workload at home to be as much as what you are currently experiencing that you mentioned you don't have time to keep up with.

 

Another possible glitch: CC is not a drop-off program; parents sit in the classes with their students. While that time is meant to provide parents with additional ideas for teaching the material, I suppose you could use it instead to catch up on grading your students' work, preparing homeschool lesson plans, reading/working ahead in your homeschool materials…

 

Not quite sure how doing CC is going to work for you with a 4yo...

 

What may be a better fit for your time and budget needs might be to use the money you would have spent on CC and hire a local tutor or a "retired" homeschooler or homeschooling mom of older students to come in 2x/week to help get you get it all done, provide one-on-one time with your students, and be able to provide experience and additional ideas for working with your students. :)

 

 

… my ds. He's usually a bit slow and it was because of a medical issue that was resolved… trying to get them all working at a normal pace is killing me.

 

Please, please, please be gentle with yourself and your students right now! There is no need to push to the point of "killing yourself" to get to a "normal pace". Pushing hard, esp. with young students, will burn out you AND your students super fast -- you will *all* hate homeschooling, and your students will hate school, period.

 

You all are still in the early stages of the learning curve of homeschooling. It's easy to expect too much from yourself and your student. You have had extenuating circumstances, and your oldest student is only 9yo. It is okay to not be "at grade level" right now!

 

Many students do not "click" with language arts areas (reading, writing, spelling, grammar) until age 9. Many families do not even start formal writing or spelling until grade 3, or formal grammar until somewhere between grade 3-5. It is okay! Many students are on a different timetable for development and don't start "clicking" with subjects until about age 12-14. (I had one of these.) It requires a lot of patient slow gentle persistence, moving at their glacial pace until they can move forward. Sometimes it means going through multiple programs until you find the one that "clicks" for them. And it almost always means everything takes twice as long in your homeschooling day. That is just the reality.

 

Gently, at this age, esp. if you have a student with delays, you pretty much have to be right there with them the entire time; you just can't set them up with worksheets and then come back. My DS#2 with learning issues in writing, spelling and math required me there to keep him on task for most things up into 6th grade, and for some things, up into high school. That was just the reality of his developmental timetable.

 

Since you have young three students all in the heavy "needing mom" stage, you'll need to figure out a way of having 4 hours a day for one-on-one time -- about 2 hours with the 9yo, abut 90 minutes with the 7yo, and about 30 minutes with the 4yo. Having books on tape or solo reading time, music practice, critical thinking and logic puzzles, art projects, science kits, educational videos, computer games, and supplements available to you to keep 2 busy while you work with the third student can help.

 

Maybe spend 3 to 3.5 hours in the morning knocking out the one-on-one work with the 9yo and 7yo and any work they can do solo, finished by lunch. Then after lunch do your science, history, art and music together for an hour, and finish with 30-45 minutes of one-on-one time with your 4yo. In the evening while you work, the adult watching the DC can do read alouds with the DC.

 

Since your DS is having to relearn how to hold a pencil, his hand muscles are going to burn out quick, so keep the writing to short "bursts" -- no more than 3 sentences at a time, and then a break of something non-writing. Separate out the tasks involved with writing -- the thinking of what to write and the physical act of writing; at this age, let him narrate/dictate to you, and then use have him use what he narrated to you as copywork. If it was a long paragraph, then you now have copywork for several days (2-3 sentences a day).

 

Try doing some things on the white board with markers, or just orally -- the Grammar for example. If writing is a struggle, then just take it out of the picture when you're trying to learn Grammar concepts, so all of his concentration is on Grammar. For open and go, you might try doing your LLATL aloud rather than having DS write it out. Also, I'd strongly recommend reading the books aloud, to practice out loud reading skills, fluency, etc. That also gives you the opportunity to discuss and learn vocabulary in context in the moment.

 

If struggling with spelling, doing oral back and forth practice is actually better for strengthening weak auditory memory. Work with the words on the white board; use colors, pictures, and "stories" to help spelling stick in his long term memory. If you need "open and go" spelling, try Phonetic Zoo, which is on CDs. Or starting about 4th grade, try Sequential Spelling or Megawords. Or, if you suspect some reading and phonics understanding issues, then these programs are expensive AND parent-intensive, but can be very helpful: All About Spelling, or, Apples and Pears.

 

 

:grouphug:  Hugs and encouragement. You sound frazzled and anxious. So glad the medical issue for your DS is done, but do give yourselves gentle recovery time. BEST of luck in finding what best helps your family in your educational journey! Warmest regards, Lori D.

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Lori D. THANK YOU  for your input. 

 

The local Classical conversations- I would need to be a tutor to offset costs and I would have to pay for all three to be in foundations. But that means I would also not be able to afford Essentials. Grrr...   I thought about just essentials for my DS, but don't have the money for it. I didn't know if IEW vs the charlotte mason-ish -cottage hill press would be better. I can't do both. 

 

 

On Spelling- Rod and Staff has been wonderful for my ds. That curriculum he can actually go through with out it taking forever. He still takes substantially more time than my daughter when she does spelling workout B. She can do 2 pages to his one page. I won't switch that curriculum though. I also know to use AAS magnetic tiles when he gets stuck, or needs to think about words differently to memorize them. I would think that he could do the same thing to memorize his multiplication tables, using a visual idea like multiplication.com, but it's still plodding along with the xtramath and multiplication facts.

 

This would also be projection schooling ideas for September, and by that time, my kids would be 10,7,5.

 

 

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It doesn't really sound like CC especially Foundations is really what you are looking for.  We have been part of CC for three years and while I do like Foundations as a supplement I would never recommend someone do it who may have difficulty paying for it.  It is expensive for what it is.  Had we used CC when we were first starting out homeschooling when money was extremely tight I think it would have been a bad experience for us.  At this point paying for it isn't an issue and I treat it as a nice supplement.  My children do not really spend time out of Foundations working on the material though unless they want to on their own.  My 10 yo son was a Memory Master this year and it was because he really wanted to do it and worked on the memorization on his own.  I definitely did spend time quizzing him as he got close to proofing but he did the work on his own.  My 10 yo dd is dyslexic and has a hard time memorizing things.   She will never be a Memory Master and I don't care.  There are always a range of kids in each class where some really get into the memory work and some don't.  

 

We have never done Essentials but my 10 yo twins are signed up for it next year.  I think it will be a very good experience for them and I am extremely happy with the tutor that has been hired for the fall.  We have found with CC that so much depends on the tutor.  Neither of my twins are great writers and would likely considered to be "behind" at this point.  Both my high school dd's had trouble with writing at that age too and both are great writers now.  At age 9 I wouldn't stress out too much.  My dyslexic 10 yo still needs a lot of help with writing.  She works on 10-12 word sentences with her tutor and writing those can be a challenge for her.  Part of the reason I'm so excited about the Essentials tutor for next year is because it is a homeschool dad whose 10 yo dd has a learning disability.  She did Essentials this year and he adapted it for her so she wouldn't have to write as much.  I know she did a lot of it orally and he would write it down.  He said the grammar was a little too much for her but they treated it as a first exposure and didn't care if she didn't get it all.  His 2 older girls have both done Essentials so he has a lot of experience with the class.  

 

 

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You've gotten tons of great info! I on;y have two things to add.

 

First, I have a really good friend who has home-schooled all 4 of her kids. They are all stellar writers, and had a very good command of grammar. She used LLATL in elementary/middle school, with all of them.

 

Second, try not to panic if your kiddo doesn't have a good grasp of grammar/writing. It didn't click until 7th grade for my dd. We just kept at it. This year she had a total shift in Language Arts, everything now makes sense, and she's doing fabulous! Her writing is great, she's finally grasping grammar concepts etc...Just hang in there!

 

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Lori D. THANK YOU  for your input. 

 

The local Classical conversations- I would need to be a tutor to offset costs and I would have to pay for all three to be in foundations. But that means I would also not be able to afford Essentials. Grrr...   I thought about just essentials for my DS, but don't have the money for it. I didn't know if IEW vs the charlotte mason-ish -cottage hill press would be better. I can't do both. 

 

 

On Spelling- Rod and Staff has been wonderful for my ds. That curriculum he can actually go through with out it taking forever. He still takes substantially more time than my daughter when she does spelling workout B. She can do 2 pages to his one page. I won't switch that curriculum though. I also know to use AAS magnetic tiles when he gets stuck, or needs to think about words differently to memorize them. I would think that he could do the same thing to memorize his multiplication tables, using a visual idea like multiplication.com, but it's still plodding along with the xtramath and multiplication facts.

 

This would also be projection schooling ideas for September, and by that time, my kids would be 10,7,5.

 

Unless you wanted to do Foundations in a community, you shouldn't have to pay for Foundations if all you want to do is enroll your Essentials aged child in Essentials. Personally, Foundations can be done at home very easily without a CC community. From what it sounds, you only have one child at the Essentials age. While s/he is in class, there should be some sort of art class for the younger siblings of the Essentials students. You do not have to do Foundations if you are enrolled in Essentials. Now, Essentials spots are given to students in Foundations first, so you may not get into a class, but you don't have to do both.

 

I also don't want to push you to do Essentials. If it's hard to get to work, then don't do it. I don't. I do Foundations at home, and I love a different LA curriculum that we do at home. We use Michael Clay Thompson's LA. I'm not sure if you looked at it. It's a bit expensive, but costs less than the Essentials class. ;)  Other ideas: Jr. Analytical Grammar, Shurley English, and KISS Grammar (this is free and online). 

 

I've been where you are, trying to figure out the best thing to do. It's hard because there are too many options out there! Read reviews, pray, and follow your gut. If the only thing in my way is the cost of something, then I try to figure out a way to get the same results with something similar but cheaper... Good luck.

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  • 1 month later...

So... drummmroll... I can't really afford it, but if God has called me, then I will go... And He will supply the need. He has already had someone give me some of the Classical conversations supplies for free! So, my kid will not go into essentials, and I will be a tutor for Foundations - My oldest has already gone through Ancients-Contemporary history, so I will be trained  properly to finally help them through memorization techniques.  (I can't do memory work on my own, unless I am held accountable by other families.) I get lazy with any drill and kill type of work, so this will force me to do it with my kiddos. I just need for them to follow one time line and the intro to Latin is nice. Plus maybe presidents and other random cool vocabulary info.  I never got that or art in this past year. I figure once they memorize the timeline the best they can in one year, then hopefully I can forgo the other years of a CC community and hopefully get the understanding of how to "schedule" a full school year in advance to keep me on track.

 

Too bad they aren't using Veritas Press cards. I think Veritas Press cards are way more biblically based -- although very US-centric- which is ok... but eh. At least we get it in a time line for one year. If I can pull songs back up for them every so often, then maybe more light bulbs will fire.  The forcing of me to change my late night schedules and wake my kiddos on time, might actually get me to change how I school and they will have evenings more free. When we wake up late, they seem to be schooling all day... Anyhow, we settled on maybe a month of some IEW concepts, LLATL readers and book studies and maybe some projects, some Abeka readers, and Rod and Staff English 2 and Spelling 4.  My DS couldn't do any other Spelling program - I tried 4 different ones, this is the only one that worked for him. Since R&S is structured for the teacher and pretty much open and go, I just need to go through more questions verbally, and he won't have to write too much. (Maybe he will like it a lot more in this way.) A culmination of MOH and SOTW or read 2 chapters of CHOW a week for Ancients. Apologia zoology  3. And, if I don't get to those, then I can just let the memory work be ok for all the kiddos. They will have covered art and Music and latin with Classical Conversations, and I will be teaching them piano at home. 

 

Last year we seemed to touch every "method" except for Charlotte Mason. Although, I know CHOW is in ambleside online year 3.5 so... maybe-- tight squeeze..

 

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