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parias1126

Preparing for 9th grade

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My DD will be 14 in September. Last year, she did mostly 7th grade. Our plan was to do a mix of 7th and 8th so that we can get at least a couple HS credits this year and call it her 8th/9th grade year. My reason for doing this is because I had her repeat most of 2nd grade and we took a bit of a break. She was struggling and we were trying to work out any delays, learning struggles, etc. She has eventually gotten past most of that, but this year came to a road block with math. Our original plan was to get through all of CLE 700/800, But we would hit about book 804, and she was redoing entire lessons, needing a lot of guidance, and we have had to back up to about 708 and repeat a couple times. I assumed that maybe we should move to another curriculum so we are going to move to TT Algebra 1 this year. She would like to start working on HS credits because she doesn't want to be rushed (and I don't blame her).

 

My thought was this. She needs to really work on writing and composition so we do that and see where it takes us. I think she will really take off with this once we get going. Most of our prior work has been through notebooking, journaling, narrating, etc. around every single subject rather than using a formal writing program. This is her style, but I'm thinking we need something more formal this year. I would like to give her an English credit this year by mixing it with some good literature. I am wondering if I can just pick some great literature that goes along with what we are studying in other areas or if I need to follow an actual literature program to be able to call it English and issue her a credit. I was going to outsource writing, but would still need to do a literature program at home so it didn't make sense to spend the money right now. I also think she can learn more at home rather than outsourcing to a local class she will attend for only 1 hour each week.

 

For history, we have used HOD previously (again, she thrives on the CM style of learning), but we are mostly eclectic in our homeschool. I am driving myself to pieces debating over what to do with history, whether or not I can issue credit by using lots of great literature, narration, composition, etc. I've even wondered how I can make MOH work for high school so that I can include my boys too. I would just expect much more from her like the lessons geared towards higher grades, further study, extra writing, research, etc.

 

For Science, I'm ready to drive myself overboard here. She is not a child who loves science. Again, she has always just read whatever interests her. She wants nothing to do with experiments, lab reports, etc. Yes, I have explained to her that she needs a lab credit in high school and that she will need to do it whether I outsource just for the experiments, purchase the kit for home, etc. I thought about doing Apologia General this year and not starting Physical until next year. Apologia General would at least get her warmed up to the idea of using textbooks and doing the experiments. I have also thought about doing the Story of Science books. She reviewed them and said she doesn't enjoy them. She spent her entire last year reading through all the Apologia Zoology books. It was her second time through them because she loves them. She has also done a couple of the Tiner books. My 12 year old son is a Science kid and if I went with Apologia, he could probably take her through all the experiments. That is what would make my life easiest after a very stressful year last year. But, that may not be the best answer.

 

With all of this being said, she is a creative child. She will have no problem with her elective credits. She's in choir, dance, and will start guitar next January. She says she wants to go to college, but also talks about culinary school, makeup artistry, and cosmetology school. Of course, after already graduating one, who said she didn't want to go to college (but moved onto the community college after trying cosmetology and hating it), I know I need to start planning the college track now.

 

Where would be a good place to start for this coming year without overwhelming her? How do I do this, but still keep her happy and not overly stressed? Last year was our worst homeschool year in the 15 years I've been homeschooling. I was ready to give up and put my children in public school. I know that is not the best place for them. I really need a plan, but this year planning just seems so much more stressful for me than it has in previous years. My original plan was to outsource most things, but the cost to do that doesn't work in my budget since I have three children. It would also make life much easier on everyone if I could use the same curriculum (like MOH) for some subjects, but that's difficult when they all learn so differently. I wanted to have her and my DS12 share in some things.  I would love for her to be a bit more independent this year so that I can focus more on my youngest (9).

 

 

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Okay, take a deep breath. To start with it looks like her level is still firmly in Jr. High. The only course she will be able to count for high school is probably Algebra, and if she continues and takes 4 more years of math, she won't need to count Algebra 1 anyway. However, if she ends up spreading some math courses over more than a year and needs to, the credit will be there for her.

 

English done prior to high school isn't usually counted. She really needs to do 4 credits worth of English during the 4 years of high school. Do what you need to, to have her very ready for English next year in 9th grade. Don't worry about trying to make it a credit.

 

For science, 8th grade is really an open field. Since science isn't her strength and nothing you are considering there is high school credit worth, pick something she will enjoy. If you want to try Apologia to see if that will be a good fit for high school, go for it. I have always heard their General and Physical Science books are the most boring in the series and they are totally unnecessary. If possible let her preview it. Pick a science subject that she is interested in (at least mildly so) and then come back and let us help you find a curriculum that will help her move toward being prepared for high school science.

 

You don't mention history (unless I overlooked it). Do you have a plan there? My suggestion would be to take one subject at a time. Decide what the goals are and the general direction you want to take is, then if you need help finding materials that will fit, come back and ask again. 

 

I feel the panic in your post. I feel your stress level. More deep breaths. You can do this. It will be ok. We'll be glad to walk you though it, but just take one step at a time and try not to rush ahead of where she really is, even if she wants to.

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Okay, take a deep breath. To start with it looks like her level is still firmly in Jr. High. The only course she will be able to count for high school is probably Algebra, and if she continues and takes 4 more years of math, she won't need to count Algebra 1 anyway. However, if she ends up spreading some math courses over more than a year and needs to, the credit will be there for her.

 

English done prior to high school isn't usually counted. She really needs to do 4 credits worth of English during the 4 years of high school. Do what you need to, to have her very ready for English next year in 9th grade. Don't worry about trying to make it a credit.

 

For science, 8th grade is really an open field. Since science isn't her strength and nothing you are considering there is high school credit worth, pick something she will enjoy. If you want to try Apologia to see if that will be a good fit for high school, go for it. I have always heard their General and Physical Science books are the most boring in the series and they are totally unnecessary. If possible let her preview it. Pick a science subject that she is interested in (at least mildly so) and then come back and let us help you find a curriculum that will help her move toward being prepared for high school science.

 

You don't mention history (unless I overlooked it). Do you have a plan there? My suggestion would be to take one subject at a time. Decide what the goals are and the general direction you want to take is, then if you need help finding materials that will fit, come back and ask again. 

 

I feel the panic in your post. I feel your stress level. More deep breaths. You can do this. It will be ok. We'll be glad to walk you though it, but just take one step at a time and try not to rush ahead of where she really is, even if she wants to.

Thank you for your response. I am not sure why I feel so rushed. Maybe because I held her back a year and she is still concerned years later. I believe in taking things slow, but I think most of her concern about wanting to move ahead faster, is because my DS12 is coming up right behind her and surpassing her in most things. :( After several talks with her about this, she still doesn't understand that she just needs to go at her own pace as does everyone else. It's a struggle for us some days. Sometimes reading these boards overwhelms me and I should just stay off of them. Haha!

 

It would definitely make life a lot easier to do something for her is combined with my other two children (12 and 9). I believe I did mention History. I was looking at MOH for history, but still not sure if that's the route I want to take. I was trying to figure out how to continue with MOH through high school so that it could be a combined subject even later. 

 

I really believe she needs to spend time this year working on higher level literature and getting a better understanding of it. She needs to work on improving her writing skills and at least get a research paper written by the end of the year. I would love to use a writing curriculum also that can be combined with my other children that is not going to go beyond my budget. I would love suggestions! :) 

 

After reading your response, I may stick with some good reading for Science. Maybe we will use some more Tiner books and add in an experiment set. I can have my DS12 do those along with her too. He loves reading any kind of biography or educational book rather than textbooks as well. If I add in some experiment kits, they can do those together. I might even take another look at Noeo Science. 

 

I like to keep our schedule to four days per week because that keeps a day open for activities/classes, etc. 

 

Yes, I am definitely stressed. I'm taking lots of deep breaths! Thank you for that! :) :) :) 

 

To sum it up (which was my original plan before starting to stress out over it) was: LOL

 

Math: TT Algebra 1

 

LA: Wordly Wise 7 or 8 (I haven't reviewed them yet)

 

      Easy Grammar or Fix it Grammar (I have always used EG with all my children, but love the looks of Fix it).

 

      Literature books that line up with whatever I choose for History (not sure if I should add on some type of literary analysis        as the only thing she has ever done is DITHOR)

 

     CAN'T DECIDE ON WRITING :( 

 

Science: She would prefer studying animals forever! I would love suggestions if you have any. If not, I will probably go with some living books or possibly Tiner books and experiment kits. 

 

History: MOH - Haven't thought about what level and how to continue it for HS so that she's still getting what she needs for her HS credit and her younger brother can still tag along. 

 

Extras: Keyboarding (she wants to learn how to type), dance, choir, guitar

 

Somehow it feels great to have things actually written out and feels a bit calming. 

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