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MyLife
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Hello All! I'm a big time planner, and I'm already researching curriculum for next school year. Anyway, next school year my oldest will be 8. Am I missing anything from Language Arts? 

 

Phonics and Reading,

Spelling,

Grammar, 

Writing, 

Cursive Penmanship,

Literature

 

Also, I am using WWE this year. I have the Complete Writer and choose my own excerpts for copywork and narration from the Bible, our History cards, read alouds. I really like WWE and would gladly use it again next year; however, I noticed that IEW has an ancients writing program. So, I have a couple of questions about IEW. Do I have to buy those expensive DVDs in order to teach IEW? Are the TMs needed? Are WWE and IEW similar?  I know nothing about IEW and have not even seen it IRL. 

 

:willy_nilly:  :willy_nilly:

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By 8, phonics and reading might be overkill for some children, or yours may still need it.  However if they still need phonics work, consider pausing spelling?

 

Language Arts could also include Oration or Recitation.  Poetry memorization?

If WWE is working well for you, don't worry about whether another writing program might be prettier.  Stick with what's working, there's no need to jump ship.

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I sometimes include vocabulary, but when I do I often couple it with another subject. The MCT trilogies list vocabulary words, for example, to couple vocab with lit. We have used the vocab books (vocab with classical roots or wordly wise) as the source of our spelling list. When we were in the phonics phase, we did spelling and phonics together (after reading the _at words, we would spell them). We don't always do vocab, and sometimes we use a regular spelling and then take breaks from it to do vocabulary - it depends on what the student needs.

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Phonics and Reading,

Spelling,

Grammar, 

Writing, 

Cursive Penmanship,

Literature

 

In my house that would be...

phonics *or* spelling

grammar

writing

cursive penmanship - maybe

literature

 

-A child that still needs phonics instruction in 3rd grade doesn't need saddled with spelling too. When they're reading well enough to not need daily phonics instruction the spelling book takes over the phonics instruction.

-Beyond learning how to read my kids have never used a reading curricula. We read good books daily and we discuss them. This has thus far produced two high schoolers who thrived in meaty Great Books literature courses and read Homer and Austen for fun. I'd say it worked. ;)

-I'd add cursive penmanship if they're just learning cursive this year, but not if they took it last year. Once they know how to form the letters correctly you decide where the bar for neatness will be in all their subjects. If their writing in any subject is messy enough to be below that bar, erase it and have them do it again. No separate penmanship course will be needed.

-Some people add vocabulary as a subject. Personally we found it redundant to reading high quality literature and especially later on when we added studying another language.

 

 

I have no experience with IEW. To get answers to those questions you're better off starting a thread all about IEW. Its method is pretty different from the WWE you're already using. I'd read up about the methodology and such on the IEW website and try to figure out why it's appealing to you so much. If you would rather stick with WWE style writing in ancient history look into Story of the World with the activity guide. Easy Classical and Brookdale House also have various WTM/WWE flavor history based writing additions.

 

For what it's worth, my current third grader is using Treasured Conversations (covers grammar and writing and is currently on sale), Spelling by Sound and Structure 3 (Rod and Staff), and a pile of high quality children's literature for her language arts.

Edited by SilverMoon
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How do you know a child is ready to end phonics instruction?

 

My 7 year old is on a first grade reading level, and he reads fluently at that level. However, he had to work really hard to learn to read. So, I'm not really sure he would be ready to drop phonics next year.

 

I have not done any formal vocabulary with him because he has a huge expressive vocabulary and naturally picks up on vocabulary from the books we read.

 

He has already learned cursive. So, I guess I could drop cursive instruction and just have him complete his copywork in cursive. 

 

Not much appeals to me about IEW except that it has some themed writing books. Otherwise, it feels overwhelming to me. I'm not sure why I was even looking at IEW because I can make WWE themed to go along with our Bible, history, and science.

 

I over analyze. I am glad I started this thread, though. You ladies have definitely helped!

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I don't think I'd drop phonics with that kid just yet either. Spelling can wait. My second DC just barely started sounding out CVC words in 2nd grade. I tried a spelling book in 3rd but she just wasn't ready. Instead I had her gently work on some studied dictation as her spelling and she didn't work through a real spelling book until 4th grade. Her third grade looked more like:

-Phonics Pathways, Plaid Phonics (workbook), going back and forth between them working at it as well as we could without overwhelming her

-reading aloud to me daily from basal readers and then picture books, listening to me read aloud to her daily

-First Language Lessons 1/2 (condensed), and much later in the year she started level 3

-studied dictation using some Charlotte Mason resources (WWE didn't exist then), practiced narration in history and science

 

For what it's worth, by about 5th grade or so there were no signs of being a late bloomer left. She'd caught up across the board. As a high schooler she lists Jane Austen as a favorite author.

 

If I had it to do over I would have tried using Spalding/Writing Road to Reading with her instead, but obviously I've no proof that it would have worked any better. My current 6yo struggles with phonics in a similar way and he has mostly used Spalding with some fun Sing, Spell, Read, & Write mixed in. It's been a slow and steady plodding with this little guy. He just read his first non-basal reader book this week with help. Morris the Moose. At 6 his language arts consists of phonics, reading to me, listening to me read to him, and penmanship practice (not cursive).

 

The current 3rd grader I mentioned up thread is a strong little student who doesn't struggle with much of anything.

Edited by SilverMoon
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How do you know a child is ready to end phonics instruction?

 

My 7 year old is on a first grade reading level, and he reads fluently at that level. However, he had to work really hard to learn to read. So, I'm not really sure he would be ready to drop phonics next year.

 

I have not done any formal vocabulary with him because he has a huge expressive vocabulary and naturally picks up on vocabulary from the books we read.

 

He has already learned cursive. So, I guess I could drop cursive instruction and just have him complete his copywork in cursive. 

 

Not much appeals to me about IEW except that it has some themed writing books. Otherwise, it feels overwhelming to me. I'm not sure why I was even looking at IEW because I can make WWE themed to go along with our Bible, history, and science.

 

I over analyze. I am glad I started this thread, though. You ladies have definitely helped!

 

If he is reading at his age level, then you could drop phonics and do spelling. I'm not impressed with ABeka's spelling, although at this age it's fine. Spelling by Sound and Structure (Rod and Staff) is more comprehensive, IMHO, beginning with the fourth grade book.

 

Vocabulary is usually for older children so I would not have expected you to be doing a formal vocabulary yet.

 

Yes, he could do his copywork in cursive.

 

If you're doing WWE, there's no reason to also do IEW.

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