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My upcoming 1st grader is NOT accelerated. Is this plan solid?


lorisuewho
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So I have three children that sort of followed the same path, basically doing first grade work in K, and maintained that 1 year ahead schedule so far.  They thrive on math like MEP and Zacarro and Horizons.  Then came my last child which dared to not be like the others.  I regret even trying to do kindergarten with her last year.  She wasn't ready, but I really wanted her to be ready.  I wanted her to use the same curricula the others did.  Total Fail.  RightStart B did not go well even at a slow pace.  MEP was a disaster.  Logic of English Foundations A and B went okay.

 

 

So this is my plan for next year for first grade. 

 

Rod and Staff Grade 1 math (ducky version)

Rod and Staff Grade 1 phonics and possibly reading or Pathway readers and also easy early real books

Pentime

Read Aloud: Listen to fairy tales and picture books read by mommy

Join in family work:  learning the states, poetry, picture study, art, listening to music, singing, hymns, Bible,

 

Swim Lessons

Ballet class

Field Hockey

 

She does lots of imaginative play and drawing most of the day.  She is very content to independently play.

 

What we aren't going to do but I'm going to feel guilty about:

Writing with Ease 1

Climbing to Good English 1

MEP 1

Challenging Word Problems 1

Science

 

Does this plan seem weak or on target?

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So I have three children that sort of followed the same path, basically doing first grade work in K, and maintained that 1 year ahead schedule so far.  They thrive on math like MEP and Zacarro and Horizons.  Then came my last child which dared to not be like the others.  I regret even trying to do kindergarten with her last year.  She wasn't ready, but I really wanted her to be ready.  I wanted her to use the same curricula the others did.  Total Fail.  RightStart B did not go well even at a slow pace.  MEP was a disaster.  Logic of English Foundations A and B went okay.

 

 

So this is my plan for next year for first grade. 

 

Rod and Staff Grade 1 math (ducky version)

Rod and Staff Grade 1 phonics and possibly reading or Pathway readers and also easy early real books

Pentime

Read Aloud: Listen to fairy tales and picture books read by mommy

Join in family work:  learning the states, poetry, picture study, art, listening to music, singing, hymns, Bible,

 

Swim Lessons

Ballet class

Field Hockey

 

She does lots of imaginative play and drawing most of the day.  She is very content to independently play.

 

What we aren't going to do but I'm going to feel guilty about:

Writing with Ease 1

Climbing to Good English 1

MEP 1

Challenging Word Problems 1

Science

 

Does this plan seem weak or on target?

 

Sounds good to me, except I wouldn't do R&S's phonics. Despite its name, it isn't nearly as strong in phonics as it could be. I'd do something else, Explode the Code, or AlphaPhonics, or Spalding/Spalding spin-off.

 

Otherwise, everything looks good. And it has nothing to do with whether or not your dc is "accelerated."

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Good for you for recognizing what went well and what needed changing. Personally, I'd just do the Pathway readers or other learn to read books and skip the phonics book until next year, assuming you'll do something like LOE Essentials later.

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It looks good to me too. I haven't used R&S at that level, so I can't comment on it. I only use phonics until the child can read easy readers, then we just practice reading until they build up fluency.

 

First grade for us this year was:

SM 1A (really. She just started 1B and its going more quickly now that she's ready)

SL readers

Read-aloud

Handwriting

Occasionally reading the Usborne human body encyclopedia or CHOW

Piano practice

 

I like LOE Essentials once they are reading and writing fluently. My 1st grader is accelerated in reading, but I'll still wait another year or so to start LOE.

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It's perfectly fine. Doing CTGE would be overkill because it has a lot of phonics in it, so don't feel guilty about that. MEP would be the same thing. No need to double up. Science doesn't need to be covered in first grade. Your plan is not weak at all.

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If you do Rod and Staff phonics it's all correlated so you really have to do their reading too. FYI it has a lot of sight words incorporated, but it has a very strong phone is base as well. I've seen it firsthand extensively from someone I knew and I was very surprised at the amount of sight words. That said none of her kids except one turned out to not be the greatest speller and even she is quite competent so I personally think it's a fine program. In fact for a child developing more on the average pace, it would probably be a great fit as it reviews a lot.

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I think it looks great too!  I had a similar situation with my 3rd child.  He has an August bday and was ready for K at newly 5.  However, his K did not look like his 2 very advanced brothers' K.  It took me awhile to adjust, but he's doing great as a young 2nd grader and even ahead/advanced if I call him a 1st grader (which most boys his age are in our school district).  He's learning things so much faster now that he's older and more self-motivated and I'm having FUN teaching him.  It took me awhile to get it in my head to let him go at his own pace.  Good job recognizing it early!  I love your "not feel guilty" list.  We did WWE1 this year in 2nd and it was beautiful.  So glad I didn't push it a year earlier.  Writing was his favorite subject.

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If you do Rod and Staff phonics it's all correlated so you really have to do their reading too. FYI it has a lot of sight words incorporated, but it has a very strong phone is base as well. I've seen it firsthand extensively from someone I knew and I was very surprised at the amount of sight words. That said none of her kids except one turned out to not be the greatest speller and even she is quite competent so I personally think it's a fine program. In fact for a child developing more on the average pace, it would probably be a great fit as it reviews a lot.

 

I taught it in a little one-room school. I would not do it again. :-(

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Sounds good to me, except I wouldn't do R&S's phonics. Despite its name, it isn't nearly as strong in phonics as it could be. I'd do something else, Explode the Code, or AlphaPhonics, or Spalding/Spalding spin-off.

 

Otherwise, everything looks good. And it has nothing to do with whether or not your dc is "accelerated."

Thank you for the encouragement.  Since we did Logic of English last year, I feel like we will be able to decode most of the sight words with what she learned last year, so as not to treat them like sight words with drill.

 

Good for you for recognizing what went well and what needed changing. Personally, I'd just do the Pathway readers or other learn to read books and skip the phonics book until next year, assuming you'll do something like LOE Essentials later.

We will probably do LOE Essentials or WRTR later :001_smile:

 

It looks good to me too. I haven't used R&S at that level, so I can't comment on it. I only use phonics until the child can read easy readers, then we just practice reading until they build up fluency.

 

First grade for us this year was:

SM 1A (really. She just started 1B and its going more quickly now that she's ready)

SL readers

Read-aloud

Handwriting

Occasionally reading the Usborne human body encyclopedia or CHOW

Piano practice

 

I like LOE Essentials once they are reading and writing fluently. My 1st grader is accelerated in reading, but I'll still wait another year or so to start LOE.

 

That looks like a very nice year!  I like Essentials, too. 

It's perfectly fine. Doing CTGE would be overkill because it has a lot of phonics in it, so don't feel guilty about that. MEP would be the same thing. No need to double up. Science doesn't need to be covered in first grade. Your plan is not weak at all.

 

Thank you for helping me to justify!

I think your plan looks lovely.

 

A year of slow and steady without undue frustration sounds great for *both* of you. ;)

Yes, I think I need to learn that slow and steady is fine and works.  I like to say it to other people.  I just didn't want to try it out for myself. :blush:

 

If you do Rod and Staff phonics it's all correlated so you really have to do their reading too. FYI it has a lot of sight words incorporated, but it has a very strong phone is base as well. I've seen it firsthand extensively from someone I knew and I was very surprised at the amount of sight words. That said none of her kids except one turned out to not be the greatest speller and even she is quite competent so I personally think it's a fine program. In fact for a child developing more on the average pace, it would probably be a great fit as it reviews a lot.

Thank you for this.  We will try to actually read the sight words instead of memorizing them.  But, I do think a program that reviews a lot is exactly what my child needs to feel successful and to be successful.

 

Thank you for posting!  I have two early bloomers, but my third is looking to be perfectly normal, and it's hard to figure out what to do!  LOL.  Glad I'm not the only one who gets thrown off by that.  :-) 

 

I like when everyone is parented and taught the same!  :lol:

I think it looks great too!  I had a similar situation with my 3rd child.  He has an August bday and was ready for K at newly 5.  However, his K did not look like his 2 very advanced brothers' K.  It took me awhile to adjust, but he's doing great as a young 2nd grader and even ahead/advanced if I call him a 1st grader (which most boys his age are in our school district).  He's learning things so much faster now that he's older and more self-motivated and I'm having FUN teaching him.  It took me awhile to get it in my head to let him go at his own pace.  Good job recognizing it early!  I love your "not feel guilty" list.  We did WWE1 this year in 2nd and it was beautiful.  So glad I didn't push it a year earlier.  Writing was his favorite subject.

Thank you.  This was very helpful to me!  We have the summer birthday going on here, also!

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Looks charming. :001_smile: You've got the important bases covered.

 

I am in the same boat, but mine has an end of summer birthday. He'll turn six on the day of the first grade cut-off in this state. We started out calling last school year his tentative K year. He seemed ready and was excited to do his own school too. He just did R&S ducky math 1, phonics/handwriting (SSRW) with readers, a read aloud, and a children's story Bible. The sisters ahead of him whipped through that math book at young preschool ages, so it felt like holding off as it was. He did great with the first workbook, slowly built his stamina and really understood the math. He can still solidly understand the math in the second workbook, and his hand can easily keep up with the writing, but it just seems like so much mental work for him. It wears him out. If the book moved any faster he'd be lost. I decided it wasn't worth it and shelved it in favor of Family Math activities and working with Cuisenaire Rods. This is working out great for him. My goal is that this little guy thinks math is enjoyable and achievable. (My oldest struggled for years and came to hate math.)

 

His '16-'17 year:  (We've been referring to it as his Official K year. Socially he's just NOT where the typical rising 1st grader is.)

-continue SSRW at his speed with various basal readers, transitioning to Kindergarten Favorites (VP) when he seems ready

-math will have lots of C-Rod play, some Miquon since it uses C-Rods, and an OOP MUS Foundations book (also manipulative heavy) ~ We'll bounce around these resources at whim and make no attempt to line them up with each other.

-continue to listen to a story Bible, potentially transitioning to him reading an easy reader Bible to me somewhere in the year

-read alouds

 

That's the core work. He wants to add science and geography. I'll consider them gravy subjects and not really schedule them. 

Science: stack of books to read aloud and discuss (Magic School Bus, first human body encyclopedia, Seed Babies, Getting to Know Nature's Children, etc), loosely correlated to the table of contents of his 3rd grade sister's life science so they can do activities and videos together

Geography: a pile of resources to work through in whatever order we please, like basic geography and map skills workbooks, Children Just Like Me, Passport to the World, and such

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Looks charming. :001_smile: You've got the important bases covered.

 

I am in the same boat, but mine has an end of summer birthday. He'll turn six on the day of the first grade cut-off in this state. We started out calling last school year his tentative K year. He seemed ready and was excited to do his own school too. He just did R&S ducky math 1, phonics/handwriting (SSRW) with readers, a read aloud, and a children's story Bible. The sisters ahead of him whipped through that math book at young preschool ages, so it felt like holding off as it was. He did great with the first workbook, slowly built his stamina and really understood the math. He can still solidly understand the math in the second workbook, and his hand can easily keep up with the writing, but it just seems like so much mental work for him. It wears him out. If the book moved any faster he'd be lost. I decided it wasn't worth it and shelved it in favor of Family Math activities and working with Cuisenaire Rods. This is working out great for him. My goal is that this little guy thinks math is enjoyable and achievable. (My oldest struggled for years and came to hate math.)

. . .

 

Thank you for sharing what you are doing.   It is helpful to hear someone else say that she felt like she was holding off so as it was.  I don't want to give my last child LESS of an education, but I do want to teach to THIS child and not the imaginary one that is just like her siblings.  My youngest is sooo very sweet.  I want her to love school and not ruin it with my expectations.

 

 

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Thank you for sharing what you are doing.   It is helpful to hear someone else say that she felt like she was holding off so as it was.  I don't want to give my last child LESS of an education, but I do want to teach to THIS child and not the imaginary one that is just like her siblings.  My youngest is sooo very sweet.  I want her to love school and not ruin it with my expectations.

 

 

You already know I think you are doing a fine job of teaching to HER.  I think your plans sound great. :)

 

(I don't do formal science for young ones either.  Throw in a few picture books on sciencey topics, and she'll get plenty in that regard.)

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Thank you for sharing what you are doing.   It is helpful to hear someone else say that she felt like she was holding off so as it was.  I don't want to give my last child LESS of an education, but I do want to teach to THIS child and not the imaginary one that is just like her siblings.  My youngest is sooo very sweet.  I want her to love school and not ruin it with my expectations.

 

 

 

Same for mine! He's a great kid and brilliant in other areas. His attention to fine details most people miss is incredible, and he comes up with deep, philosophical ideas out of the blue. He's always asking questions about how things work and wanting to understand random stuff like traffic rules or weather patterns. I've come to think of him as an asynchronous learner. Like my 10yo who will be high school level in some subjects this year but still wants paper dolls to go with her history and Shakespeare. Just DS5 has his own unique blend of skills.

Edited by SilverMoon
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I finally got my neurotypical after 2e/gifted siblings and am loving every minute of it! If I had first grade to do over again, I'd make more time for art, music, and outdoor play.

 

It's been helpful to me to read Louise Bates Ames' child development books, especially the older ones from the '70s and '80s, to help sort out what is age-appropriate and what is current fads and fashions.

Edited by Guest
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Looks good to me! My middle son, who was slower to learn to read, did very well with R&S Phonics and Reading (we sounded out the sight words and explained the phonics involved). That's the program that really pushed him forward into reading. He couldn't handle Spalding and its spinoffs at that time. That was too much to remember all at once, and he so badly wanted to READ. Now he's reading great. His spelling is better than I expected from a struggling reader (it's not great, but he's able to do the studied dictation in ELTL level 3, so I'm happy with that... we analyze the new words in a Spalding-esque manner).

 

We also didn't do much writing until about 3rd grade. He's coming along well, and he will be well educated by time he finishes high school. ;)

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Looks good to me! My middle son, who was slower to learn to read, did very well with R&S Phonics and Reading (we sounded out the sight words and explained the phonics involved). That's the program that really pushed him forward into reading. He couldn't handle Spalding and its spinoffs at that time. That was too much to remember all at once, and he so badly wanted to READ. Now he's reading great. His spelling is better than I expected from a struggling reader (it's not great, but he's able to do the studied dictation in ELTL level 3, so I'm happy with that... we analyze the new words in a Spalding-esque manner).

 

We also didn't do much writing until about 3rd grade. He's coming along well, and he will be well educated by time he finishes high school. ;)

 

Thank you for this!  I'm glad to hear someone speak positively about R&S phonics/reading.  I know it is not that popular here; however, LOE was not going to continue to work for this child.  It was too much too fast even going slowly.

 

Loved your last line!! It is hard to see the finish line from the starting line.

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I used R&S phonics with all three of my kids. It is an excellent program, and all of my kids are very good readers now. I used the readers (not the workbooks - full of unfun busy work) as well, though you absolutely don't have to. The phonics program stands alone; the only connection the reading program has with the phonics program is the fact that the TM's for both are combined into one book. I didn't use the flashcards (not necessary), and I combatted the problem with some words in the 1st grade reading being sight words by starting the readers about a month or so after starting the phonics program. The phonics rules for those words had already been covered by that point, except for a very few, for which I just stated the rule for the sound on the fly and moved on.

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I used R&S phonics with all three of my kids. It is an excellent program, and all of my kids are very good readers now. I used the readers (not the workbooks - full of unfun busy work) as well, though you absolutely don't have to. The phonics program stands alone; the only connection the reading program has with the phonics program is the fact that the TM's for both are combined into one book. I didn't use the flashcards (not necessary), and I combatted the problem with some words in the 1st grade reading being sight words by starting the readers about a month or so after starting the phonics program. The phonics rules for those words had already been covered by that point, except for a very few, for which I just stated the rule for the sound on the fly and moved on.

 

Great advice; thank you!  Good to know that the phonics could be used ahead of the Reading to keep the reading phonetic and not sight-word based.

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I think you have a good plan. Just to reassure you that I only did phonics, math and writing with my first grader along with a lot of library books and I'm so glad I kept it so simple and focused only on the basics. She is now going into 3rd grade and it has not hindered her at all. In fact, I'm really starting to see her flourish. :-) She was/is super imaginative and loves to draw so she sounds a lot like your daughter.

 

By the way, I used R&S Phonics without the reading portion or sight words and it worked great! I had used a couple of other things prior and we got stuck but the R&S phonics instruction and workbooks really helped her move to the next level. I love it. The phonics and reading are seperate in the Manuel's so not intertwined at all. Super easy to tailor to your needs. I think the phonics is very solid.

Edited by HeartatHome
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I want to offer an alternative to R&S phonics in case you get into it and don't like it so well, or in case another reader is interested in a similar course of study except the R&S Phonics.  Pathway Readers offers a great learning to read program which I have used with all three of my sons.  (I actually start it mid-Kindergarten, but it is designed for first graders).  The items on this Rainbow Resource page will give you everything you need (with the exception of "Phonics Pathways" which is a different program.  

 

http://www.rainbowresource.com/searchspring.php?q=pathway+reading#/?_=1&filter.facet_grades=Grade%201&page=1

 

 

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Looks good to me... I used Rod and Staff Phonics and Reading for 2 of my children and I thought it was a solid program.  It does teach sight words in addition to phonics  It got my child reading quick and they are all strong readers.  

I'm happy to hear another good review!

 

I think you have a good plan. Just to reassure you that I only did phonics, math and writing with my first grader along with a lot of library books and I'm so glad I kept it so simple and focused only on the basics. She is now going into 3rd grade and it has not hindered her at all. In fact, I'm really starting to see her flourish. :-) She was/is super imaginative and loves to draw so she sounds a lot like your daughter.

 

By the way, I used R&S Phonics without the reading portion or sight words and it worked great! I had used a couple of other things prior and we got stuck but the R&S phonics instruction and workbooks really helped her move to the next level. I love it. The phonics and reading are seperate in the Manuel's so not intertwined at all. Super easy to tailor to your needs. I think the phonics is very solid.

Thank you for this review.  I appreciate it.

 

I want to offer an alternative to R&S phonics in case you get into it and don't like it so well, or in case another reader is interested in a similar course of study except the R&S Phonics.  Pathway Readers offers a great learning to read program which I have used with all three of my sons.  (I actually start it mid-Kindergarten, but it is designed for first graders).  The items on this Rainbow Resource page will give you everything you need (with the exception of "Phonics Pathways" which is a different program.  

 

http://www.rainbowresource.com/searchspring.php?q=pathway+reading#/?_=1&filter.facet_grades=Grade%201&page=1

Thanks.  I LOVE Pathway!  We own all the readers.  The stories are so sweet and often humorous.  We have used Climbing to Good English in the past.  I have Learning Through Sounds which looks good, but I think this particular child needs more than what it offers.

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