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Hunter: The Rainbow Curriculum


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I have been looking at your rainbow curriculum.  I find it intriguing.  I have a couple of questions.  I had printed off version 9.8 and now version 12.  I was comparing them and I am interested in knowing what criteria you use for adding/removing/placing books.  For instance, I noticed that "Last of the Mohicans" and "Silas Marner" was in the Gold level Novels of 9.8 and has been replaced by "Les Miserables", Robinson Crusoe", and "Scarlet Letter" in 12.0.  I am not questioning those choices in particular, just wondering how you are determining what is best for each level because I see lots of changes between versions. 

 

Also, is each level a year?  How would I determine where to place a student?  Are you using this/planning to use this with actual students or is it just a theory?  I really admire the exhaustive work that is going into this project.  I have been mulling over how I could implement it with my own children. 

Thanks for any information about the thought process that is going into this you would be willing to share.

Joy

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I have switched priorities a few times. I know I've been all over the place, with switching priorities and then having to shift everything to try and keep some sort of theme going for each year.

 

I made the mistake of trying to incorporate the Word Cloud Classics into the curriculum, as they are currently popular here. I now realize I need to have an entirely separate reading list for students wanting to prioritize the Word Cloud editions.

 

Some of my wild experiments, were 99 waste, but all the shifting sometimes gave me ONE idea that I think was worth 20 hours of wasted research and shifting.

 

Anyone watching these editions must think I'm having a schizophrenic break. Sigh! There were logical reasons for the shifts but they were shortsighted. 

 

I have struggled with extreme minimalism, thinking it's always easier to add than subtract, but in this most recent edition, I added CM style shakespeare and Plutarch, but left it unhighlighted, to make it optional.

 

This version and some others have history books in italic that are only available as eBooks. I'd really like to make every book available as paperback, hardback, professional eBook, and free eBook, but sometimes that destroys the big picture. So version 12 includes some historical fiction that is only in eBooks. I think people that want physical books will find it easy to sub those out with something that fits into the historical time period.

 

A level should take about a year for average students. Some families will want to compact and skip some of the non-bolded titles and complete all 10 levels in 6 or 8 years.

 

More than anything this is for ME. I'm sharing it with whoever is interested, but I'm not advocating it's use. I do think it might already be better than Robinson and TJeD, though. And if someone had been kicked off of the AO forum and needs titles that are more available in their chosen format, they might find it useful.

 

I really really do want to stop shifting things around, but I'm trying to juggle so many different priorities that people have shared over the years. It's just 2 pages, but there is hundreds of hours of research and shifting into this. No curriculum can be everything. I'm sometimes trying too hard.

 

I try to make at least some of the novels for each year have some sort of connection to the nature study topic and to the history, and I try to make sure a couple titles are something entirely different to break the monotony. I try to limit the number of "girl" books but include at least one.

 

Sometimes I realize a book I thought was in paperback or eBook isn't. Just because a book is public domain, doesn't mean there is free copy available online. Sometimes just the loss of one book wreaked havoc through the entire curriculum.

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I have really struggled on where to end this curriculum and have decided to make it line up with I'm doing here with my students. I now only teach up till students are ready to take advantage of GED prep and remedial Community College. I have decided NOT to cover those levels as a DEFAULT, anymore. I will work individually with a student in special circumstances, but in general I believe that my strengths are best used PREPARING students to THRIVE in that environment instead of trying to replace it.

 

GED prep and remedial community college classes here are pretty good! The problem is that students show up at those classes unprepared for them. There is little available for students needing better prep FOR those classes. So I'm starting to work WITH community resources more.

 

I definitely have students that are too mentally unwell to go to those classes. Those students don't need to worry about the topics in those classes as a PRIORITY as they will never be attending past those classes if they cannot even handle those classes. I'm teaching students more as whole people, and widening what I consider "education". Mental and physical health, learning to work, and learning to be independent are critical, and not secondary to spoon-feeding academics. Students that are not sleeping, are not well hydrated, and that don't have any work experience all fail out of community college. I'm confident about pulling back a bit, and prioritizing differently.

 

If a student started level red for 1st grade and did one level a year, then just as he was getting his license, he would be well prepped to drive himself to a GED or community college class. Many boys are very ready for a teacher other than mom at that point, and a GED or remedial CC class, instead of being a stigma, is a great opportunity for the young man to interact with others, and for mom to be able to focus her time and money and storage space on the lower levels and younger children. Of course a mom can keep an older student home and prepare them to test out of GED prep and remedial CC, but I have chosen not to officially add those years, as I think it immediately gobbles up mom's resources where they are needed least.

 

In the past I have focused on preparing students to test out of as many remedial classes as possible. Now I'm trying to over-prepare them for those classes, and expecting them to take advantage of an excellent community resource.

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As for placement, place by which McGuffey reader a student is in. It's not so important that you actually use the readers; but do use them as a placement tool. I'm not sure if that makes sense.

 

I know this is radical and I know there are all sorts of exceptions, but I no longer teach a student even math beyond their READING level. If a student cannot read and make sense of their math book and write about their current math topics in their journal, they are placed too high in math. Even if a student can make some wild leaps in mental maths, but cannot copy and accurately solve multi-digit numbers, I'm not moving them ahead.

 

I have handheld and spoon-fed 2E students and I haven't seen good long term results from making sure they are always doing their maximum in their gifted areas, with me acting as their personal servant. There are times where some 2E students are going to use mom/teacher as wheelchair and later on have another person act as wheelchair, while they accomplish great things for mankind. But for the students I have interacted with, it just sets up awkward and unhealthy human interactions that do more harm than good.

 

So placement is ALL about seeing which reader the student is ready for.

 

If you use the Strayer-Upton math suggestions, instead of the Ray's, you will see that Book 1 is started in about year 4, instead of 3 or 2. That is not a mistake. I have matched that up with Ray's and matched Ray's up with the McGuffey reader that it was often used along side. Strayer-Upton gets "behind" another 1/2 year between levels indigo and violet, where chapter 2 is spread over 2 years, doing the fractions in the first year, and the decimals in the next. Level Bronze finally finishes Book 2 and just draws a few extra percents problems from Book 3. Book 3 which most people want to use for grades 7 and 8 or god forbid grades 5 and 6, is scheduled for the 9th and 10th years. That is NOT a mistake. The pre-algebra topics are scheduled when the AVERAGE student can READ and WRITE about abstractions and therefore shows me that they are ready to deal with abstractions in math.

 

The main way I judge a student's readiness for abstract math is when they can talk about their vomit and diarrhea logically. If they insist that they began to gush from every orifice BECAUSE of what they JUST ate instead of understanding that it's likely that they just began to leak AFTER they ate that thing, and not necessarily BECAUSE then I know they are not yet ready to begin to talk logically about abstract math. I call it the vomit test. :lol:

 

When math is taught at the right developmental level, students enjoy it and use it. They can write little stories in their journal that incorporate math. They can read and understand their math book. They have more confidence in their math abilities and more hope for the future, even if they are more "behind".

 

Some students will be able to combine Red and Orange math into one year; and Indigo, Violet, and Bronze into 2 years instead of 3. But I feel STRONGLY about stretching them out for MY students, so I wrote them the way I needed them.

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Levels Bronze and Gold are both modern history and just 2 years apart. There is sometimes a lot of shifting of books between those 2 years as they are not that far apart. Sometimes I just shifted a book because of number of pages, as some books are very short or very long.

 

Bronze is earth and space sciences.

Silver is life sciences, with flowerless plants for nature study.

Gold is physical sciences with fish and invertebrates for nature study.

 

So, I tried to place more geography type books in Bronze and ocean/fish books in Gold, but there is a lot of overlap there, as well as both years being the same history period. Voyage of the Beagle has been shifted a few times from the year of life science to the year of ocean/fish.

 

Like i said, sometimes I'm trying too hard.  :willy_nilly:  :banghead:  Then when I tried to schedule in mostly Word Cloud Classics, I just made a mess, and had to back track.

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I've also struggled with how American vs Western to make the curriculum.

 

And how secular vs including obviously Christian titles. Books are books to me, and I'm not trying to indoctrinate students with a worldview, but just supply books that are interesting, full of content, and will want to make the students write and draw about them during the journaling hour. I am comfortable with books from the full spectrum of anti-Christian to radical/ultra-conservative Christian, but I want to be sensitive to my students' needs and anyone else that might want to use this.

 

The Silver science book, The Holy Earth, has been on and off the list. I think it's a great book alongside Walden, to get a student thinking, but I wonder if it's too Christian. And then I go and schedule Voyage of the Beagle which is at the other end of the spectrum. Am I alienating everyone or creating balance? These are good public domain books that are available in so many formats and still appropriate for today's readers. They are both in version 12. First and foremost this is a curriculum of public domain texts that have stood the test of time and are available in as many formats as possible.

 

Books that come in whispersyc are given priority as that is the easiest way to maneuver through an audio book, and listening to audio is important for students that are deprived of the opportunity to have classroom teacher pronounce words for them.

 

There are so many reasons for all the shifting. I'm not sure if knowing any of this helps.

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If anyone is wondering, why I have let people see my rough drafts, instead of waiting to unveil a more finished product.

 

There are people here that are my friends and worry about me. There have been days lately that I didn't post at the forum and didn't respond to personal e-mails. Seeing an update let them know I was at least healthy enough to work on the curriculum, even if not healthy enough to talk TO people.

 

There are people that are just curious what I'm working on, even if they have absolutely no intention of using it.

 

I'm just letting people see what I'm up to. I'm letting you all look over my shoulder as I try and create an alternative to some other curricula that have been complained about here as not being good enough. I'm just letting you see into my world if you want to. It's more like I'm not hiding what I'm working on, than anything else.

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I printed off your version 7.3 because it was the first version I saw.  I don't know what (if anything) I am going to do with it, but I like it a lot.  I especially like the part at the bottom, though I am not sure I would consider 1 hour of the 3 R's enough.  But I appreciate that you wrote all of that down at the bottom because I agree that it is important to be HEALTHY and for years I didn't focus enough on that.  I am thinking about how to incorporate some of that into my kids' lives, etc. in a more deliberate way.  (Rules about water, bedtime, electronics after a certain time) I am also thinking about the electronics rule for myself!!  

 

I am using McGuffey's Readers but not the spelling book, grammar, or math books right now.  I am really enjoying using the McGuffey's 1879 with my kids, especially the one that is just learning to read.  SWR influences my phonograms heavily, but I don't know how to NOT teach that way.  The only downside to that is trying to explain to someone how I am teaching reading without telling them to do the whole SWR program.  I am wanting to write a supplement to RC explaining how to use and adapt the phonics flashcards to make them more accurate and useable.  I haven't gotten that far yet.  I am planning to try out the Prof K Spelling book as soon as I finish with the spelling words at the top of the McGuffey lessons and if that goes well I want them to do the Prof K Grammar and see how that works.  If either of those fail I am back to the drawing board!

 

I like HTT but I had trouble using it with my 5 year old before and then she took off with the McGuffey and the flashcards we were making of the sounds and words without having her write first.  I had tried HTT without the writing portion as well and it wasn't clicking for her, but maybe she just wasn't ready at the time.  She wanted to learn so that wasn't the issue, but maybe her brain just wasn't ready yet.

 

I am also thinking about how far ahead I need to prepare them for.  Part of me thinks that I can't rely on universities and colleges to prepare my children for life and that the more they can study on their own and test out of things the more time and money they will save and the better they will actually learn the material and be protected from other possible negative side effects of the college world.  But part of me thinks that if I can just get them to a certain level (which could potentially happen younger than 18 for sure), then they can take off with online classes and such.  But I honestly know nothing about the college world beyond how I did it (full scholarship, decent SAT scores, good grades, lots of outside activities, good essay, etc.)  And I know we have several community colleges around us and a college right near us but I don't have a good opinion of the politics of the school near our home and I know nothing about the quality of the community colleges near us.  

 

One thing I am thinking about is whether to let the kids read whatever as long as they are always reading something nonfiction and fiction or whether to dictate their reading list.  It is going ok to hand a reading list to my oldest and my third but my second child, who is a voracious reader, is totally opposed to me picking out his books, especially if they are in any way beneath his reading level (unless he chooses it).  I also am thinking about letting them dictate original compositions to me earlier than I had planned and then copying those out or choosing their own copywork that inspires them.  The problem with letting them choose is that I have one that would never know what to choose and it would be harder for me to check than being consistent with the McGuffey's.  So I am just fiddling with what is practical for me to do and what is inspiring to them.  

 

Alrighty, I have a fussy two year old I need to attend to, but I wanted to just say thank you.  I find what you are doing now and what you actually did with your second child to be fascinating.  

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I know nothing about the "right" way to prepare for college. I think Kathy Jo is producing an excellent curriculum, Wayfarers, to prepare students for that route, and recommend that higher income, globally gifted, mainstream students with no physical or mental health issues, and that are not mobile/minimalist, use that curriculum.

 

My experiences have been about alternative and "wrong" ways to do things that get you in through the back door, and using community resources put in place for those that cannot or WILL not submit to the standard college prep course. I'm trying to create an alternative for those who have expressed failure with and discontent for what is already available.

 

I've listened for decades to people's failures and fears. This will be the fruit of tears, whatever that is.

 

 

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Hunter,

Thank you so much for your insights.  It leaves me with a lot to ponder.  I am schooling mainstream students.  The are not brilliant, but all excel in their own ways.  I am attracted to your experiment because of the simplicity.  We use a couple different math programs (Saxon and TT) and I have resources that I use for grammar.  I am mostly interested in page 2 with all the literature/history/science selections. 

Again, thank you for sharing your work.

Joy

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I've heard a lot of people say they are intimidated by Handbook of Nature Study, even though the love the idea of it being their main science text. I wanted to prioritize adding science and literature novels that cover the assigned section of HON. I think HON is so much more approachable when the mom and student are already doing the nature topic in their readings.

 

I've been focusing on pre-reading level Green, and I'm finding the topics about brooks, reptiles and amphibians effortless to learn about, when HON is just ONE of the resources used to learn about the topics.

 

Brook study will help stuents understand the Nile river better. Frogs and reptiles come up constantly in the literature of the level with all the focus on rivers and deserts. There are 2 science texts that teach the topics explicitly.

 

I'm really pleased about how well I've managed to integrate HON. But there might be people that think integration of HON is not something they want to make a top priority, and this would be a big negative for them.

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One day, when you feel like it, do talk to us about maths journaling.

 

Math journaling works so well when the child is placed in maths at their READING and WRITING level. It's impossible if they are placed beyond it.

 

First children copy math, like they copy everything else. Five puppies crossed the road. Five more puppies crossed the road. Ten puppies altogether crossed the road. They copy that and draw a picture. This would look like busy work and a waste if the student were working on math beyond what they could copy.

 

When the child starts composing little stories, their little stories include math. Young students don't really know what big numbers mean. If students are allowed to just use numbers that they understand, they will include them in their stories.

 

Students also copy tables. Vintage math books all have tables. My students know that copying tables works. I make them copy tables when they plateau at drill software and their scores immediately go up. They look at me in shock, it's so effective. Then they choose to copy without coercion. 

 

If a child is learning slanted cursive the numbers should be slanted, too. They should learn how to make their numbers about halfway in height between lowercase and uppercase letters. It takes practice to write math neatly. I don't believe in starting multi-digit addition until the student can copy multi-digit numbers neatly.

 

Students should practice writing funny addresses. First by copying, then by composing.

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But why?  Why does the font of their writing of math problems helpful?  Why is composing problems helpful?  Why is writing funny addresses helpful?

 

You don't have to explain tables because I get that.  

 

I recently read of an RC mom who had started her child in Ray's and then tried to switch her to learning math facts via flashcards as prescribed in Robinson.  Even though she could do the problems fine in Ray's (in the form of story problems), reading the flashcards and doing them was like a foreign language to her.  This could be a problem if using a more modern text that doesn't have as many oral problems and story problems.  It made me leary of using Ray's, if I wasn't already for the fact that it seems to require more hand-holding (even though I like the IDEA of Ray's).

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I recently read of an RC mom who had started her child in Ray's and then tried to switch her to learning math facts via flashcards as prescribed in Robinson.  Even though she could do the problems fine in Ray's (in the form of story problems), reading the flashcards and doing them was like a foreign language to her.  This could be a problem if using a more modern text that doesn't have as many oral problems and story problems.  It made me leary of using Ray's, if I wasn't already for the fact that it seems to require more hand-holding (even though I like the IDEA of Ray's).

 

It's a far more common problem for kids to be unable to do story problems, leaving them able to do work out of a textbook, but unable to actually use any of it in real life.

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But why?  Why does the font of their writing of math problems helpful?  Why is composing problems helpful?  Why is writing funny addresses helpful?

 

You don't have to explain tables because I get that.  

 

I recently read of an RC mom who had started her child in Ray's and then tried to switch her to learning math facts via flashcards as prescribed in Robinson.  Even though she could do the problems fine in Ray's (in the form of story problems), reading the flashcards and doing them was like a foreign language to her.  This could be a problem if using a more modern text that doesn't have as many oral problems and story problems.  It made me leary of using Ray's, if I wasn't already for the fact that it seems to require more hand-holding (even though I like the IDEA of Ray's).

 

The child might have not been able to think abstractly yet. The flashcards might have been too abstract, still, and that is FINE. 

 

Vintage teacher manuals talk a LOT about doing more concrete math before introducing abstract numbers without labels. First the student handles objects. Then the student at least has pictures and words. Lastly the student just uses numbers.

 

These are well documented stages that a students is expected to progress through.

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Dd does make worksheets for her uncle sometimes. So that's maths journalling?

 

I wouldn't want it to be the only form of journaling, but yes, I would include this as journaling. The student is taking ownership of the material and beginning to manipulate and apply it. That's awesome that she is doing that!

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It is critical for students to be confident about copying, before being expected to solve large problems. It's hard to learn to do 2 new things at once. Many children get problems wrong, because of sloppy handwriting, and some are even more overwhelmed and don't even know how to form their numbers and get them all the same size and lined up.

 

One skill at a time. Copy first. Actually...dictate second; I forgot to list that above. Compose third. Math should NOT be divorced from all the rest of what you do! You all do copywork and dictation and composition, right? Why not for math?

 

Addresses are important as they mix letters and numbers. This is ONE way for students to practice combining numbers and letters while preparing for a critical task. We all need to know how to address an envelope neatly and correctly. Yes, I know you can print envelopes with a computer, but not always. Writing snarky addresses is an easy to repeat composition exercise that I have used successfully, and is particularly popular with reluctant writers.

 

Writing stories that include math mix numbers and letters. Rare is the child who confidently combines letters and numbers. It's the default to teach slanted letters in the handwriting workbooks and vertical numbers in the math workbooks. When kids try to copy problems from a textbook or use math in real life, they are stumped, partially because of handwriting issues. The letters and numbers don't just look sloppy, they bang into each other when the slants differ. They know SOMETHING is wrong but they cannot guess what it might be.

 

I wrote 1 hour of textbook work, because there is 1 hour of journaling. And yes, journaling includes math, and for an older student, instructions on how to solve a particular type of problem in their own words. Also moms of large families cannot devote more than 1 hour a day per child to explicit instruction. They just can't. When I am juggling several students, I can't give more than an hour to each. I just can't. I won't set up myself or others to fail. Of course smaller families can do more. It's so easy to add, but so hard to subtract from a curriculum.

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I couldn't sleep last night and I was thinking about back up plans again, or even variations of what we are doing now.  

 

I am fascinated by The Book of Knowledge and The Book of Life.  I am thinking about a four hour plan where they would do 1 hour of listening (to me read selections from The Book of Knowledge and The Book of Life), 1 hour of response (journaling in response to what I read), 1 hour of studying (either vintage texts or their Saxon and McGuffey/vocab/spelling/grammar/copywork or composition), and 1 hour tutor session with me.  My younger ones would pretty much go straight from listening to working with me.  There may be a time gap in there somewhere for the older kids, so I would either fill it with their own reading of choice or let them break and come back to meet with me.  And it may not actually be rigidly divided in hours, either, depending on how much there was to cover with each child.  During their study time they would look over what I will cover with them and do as much thinking or writing ahead that they can, as well as study the things they are working on memorizing.  I'm not going to change anything yet because what we are doing is working right now, but I am planning to order those two sets this summer anyway so I would first experiment with substituting that for our read aloud and devotion time and see what happens.  I already tutor one on one and only spend an hour with my 5 year old.  The rest usually take less time.  I fit in working with 5 kids in 3 1/2 hours max (like I said, an hour of which is with the 5 year old so that means I fit the other 4 into a little over 30 minutes each).  With Saxon and copywork (or  eventually composition) there is much they can do on their own and I only check back over their math work and copywork and work on spelling right now.  My 7 year old does flashcards on her own so I have nothing to do with math with her but I do spend more time on her phonics and spelling in the McGuffey.  

 

I am still fascinated by the following books:

Math- Rays and Strayer-Upton

Spelling- Webster's, McGuffey Spellers (both versions)

Reading- McGuffey's (both versions)

Language- PLL/ILL and Harvey's

Memorywork/Religion- New England Primer

 

If I were going to use a vintage curriculum like this, I would possibly encourage them to enter community college, classes in our community, or some online school when they were done with these books and study advanced math, modern language(s), composition, music theory, and painting.  And I think I would have them go through the Annals of America and a list of American literature to read through at home.  But I am going to keep using Robinson for now and see how it continues to go.  I am doing more with the McGuffey's (1879) than just reading them as part of the booklist and I am finding it wonderful for teaching reading so far.  And I think I could use anything for spelling.  But the math and the language books are harder for me to get my head around actually using because they are not as spiral and the lessons are varied each day vs. something more predictable.  I may even need a teacher guide to use PLL/ILL effectively.  I would also have to evaluate whether the phonics and spelling materials by Mott Media, Ruth Beechick, and HTT would be helpful or just clutter things up.  I like the EMoM, but I also think that I may feel confined if I try to use it as prescribed rather than figure out my own ways of teaching from it.  

 

Hunter, can you give us a run down of how your tutoring hour is used?  I think it would be easy enough to fit the reading and spelling in, but I am wondering how to fit the math and language in.  Also, do you assign them homework?

 

Thanks!

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I'm starting to block schedule the 3R's and only teach one textbook topic at time, Waldorf style.

 

I don't think I will ever start a math block the same month I start a new school year. I'll probably give a couple review problems a day, but that's it. And I really mean 1-3, and no more.

 

I'll wait until the second or third month to introduce ONE new math topic, and I won't teach grammar or composition while I'm doing that.

 

How does an hour look here? Not like what you expect. :lol:

 

Phone rings at 12:15 AM and wakes me up just as I am going to sleep.

 

"Will you help me learn some math?"

 

"Where are you?"

 

Student says she is in a bus station in another city 5 hours away, waiting for a China Town to China Town bus to bring her back to our city.

 

"When was last time you ate or drank anything?"

 

"I'm on an air fast. I don't need to eat or drink. Will you teach me some math?"

 

"If you get some water and drink it, I'll teach you some math. Call me back after you drank the water. I don't teach dehydrated students."

 

"I'm not dehydrated!" Student launched into talk about book written by relative that advocates air fasts. I cut her off.

 

"Your a racist!"

 

"No I'm not. I'm just sleep deprived and cranky, and you are dehydrated. I'm hanging up. Call me when you have drank some water."

 

I hang up.

 

Student calls back,

 

"I drank the water. I want to work on Saxon Algebra. I have the pages for lesson ... with me."

 

"That's too hard for you. You aren't ready"

 

Student starts in on story about wanting to do what so and so is doing.

 

"I'm too tired to teach backwards tonight."

 

"Tutor A teaches that way."

 

"Tutor A is the one who taught you about Pangea, before anyone taught you planets are always round, and the picture she showed you led you to believe the world was flat until Pangea broke up and made the world round. I teach basics up. Tutor A teaches college down. If you want to do Algebra tonight call her."

 

"I'm not talking to her right now."

 

"If WE are doing math we are going to do it my way."

 

"Okay"

 

I dictate some problems and help her solve them.

 

Then we talk a bit about journaling and what book to download onto her phone and hang up.

 

Do I assign homework? We don't use that word. Self-study is self-soothing. It is part of life for anyone that works with me long-term now. They become unschoolers. Math at midnight is for fun.

 

 

 

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Hunter,

 

You are amazing. I hope someone makes a movie about your life someday.......

Let us hope they do NOT!!!!

 

Ladies, I am suddenly reduced to only having wifi at public hotspots, and I have to get to those hotspots on foot, so for days at a time I'm only going to be able to tap out short responses from my phone.

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I'm starting to block schedule the 3R's and only teach one textbook topic at time, Waldorf style.

 

I don't think I will ever start a math block the same month I start a new school year. I'll probably give a couple review problems a day, but that's it. And I really mean 1-3, and no more.

 

I'll wait until the second or third month to introduce ONE new math topic, and I won't teach grammar or composition while I'm doing that.

 

How does an hour look here? Not like what you expect. :lol:

 

Phone rings at 12:15 AM and wakes me up just as I am going to sleep.

 

"Will you help me learn some math?"

 

"Where are you?"

 

Student says she is in a bus station in another city 5 hours away, waiting for a China Town to China Town bus to bring her back to our city.

 

"When was last time you ate or drank anything?"

 

"I'm on an air fast. I don't need to eat or drink. Will you teach me some math?"

 

"If you get some water and drink it, I'll teach you some math. Call me back after you drank the water. I don't teach dehydrated students."

 

"I'm not dehydrated!" Student launched into talk about book written by relative that advocates air fasts. I cut her off.

 

"Your a racist!"

 

"No I'm not. I'm just sleep deprived and cranky, and you are dehydrated. I'm hanging up. Call me when you have drank some water."

 

I hang up.

 

Student calls back,

 

"I drank the water. I want to work on Saxon Algebra. I have the pages for lesson ... with me."

 

"That's too hard for you. You aren't ready"

 

Student starts in on story about wanting to do what so and so is doing.

 

"I'm too tired to teach backwards tonight."

 

"Tutor A teaches that way."

 

"Tutor A is the one who taught you about Pangea, before anyone taught you planets are always round, and the picture she showed you led you to believe the world was flat until Pangea broke up and made the world round. I teach basics up. Tutor A teaches college down. If you want to do Algebra tonight call her."

 

"I'm not talking to her right now."

 

"If WE are doing math we are going to do it my way."

 

"Okay"

 

I dictate some problems and help her solve them.

 

Then we talk a bit about journaling and what book to download onto her phone and hang up.

 

Do I assign homework? We don't use that word. Self-study is self-soothing. It is part of life for anyone that works with me long-term now. They become unschoolers. Math at midnight is for fun.

I like you.  

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After writing out that replay of a lesson, I had to look up "drink" in a table of irregular verbs. I guess I need some practice with that word. Especially since I use it so much.

 

Eliza you are hysterical.

 

My life hasn't been linear enough for a good plot. And a couple of episodes when I was discharged from an ER high on morphine and Ativan were NOT anything to brag about. I'll do almost anything on that cocktail.

 

Stellerella I like you too!!!

 

Forgive my lack of likes. I don't think I can give them on a phone.

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I don't do google so I haven't seen all of The Rainbow Curriculum, but I wanted to sing with the chorus and thank you for what is accessible through archive.org, project gutenberg, etc. and also for all of your help on the forums for me personally and in real life for people who are not "college bound" or "professionals".

 

Education is not something that can be bought and sold.

 

I also need to stay away from the forums for now and will probably never meet you AFK, but you have been one of my life changing online friends and I am so glad that I have had the privilege of "knowing" you.

 

 

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