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9th grade planning help?


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I'm starting to plan for next year and I'm trying to decide what courses would be good for DD. She does not enjoy academics, particularly science or math (especially math!), though she does like reading, creative writing and art. She's dyslexic. Humor or "fun" and/or highly visual classes work better than studying from a textbook.

 

I've been lurking on the boards for weeks, and researching until I'm dizzy, but I still don't have a clear plan for some subjects.

 

My current plan:

 

Math: Algebra I (need help on deciding which program/class provider would be best. I'm really lost on this.)

English: Shmoop English 9? (I have a 1 year subscription that expires in December, but I don't know if there would be some kind of fun writing/literature course that would also cover essay writing)

              Spelling You See (yes, she still needs spelling)

Science: considering Guesthollow's chemistry, or biology at Fundafunda

Social Studies: Big History Project or US government and economics with Fundafunda

Foreign Language: she wants to study ASL, but I don't know where good classes for that could be found (might wait until 10th to start - my state only requires 2-3 years of foreign language)

Electives: Athletics - tumbling & trampoline (she puts at least 7 hours a week in, athletics are her passion, and I want to give her some credit for it. Also, our state requires at least 1 PE credit.)

                Critical Thinking & Study Skills (Shmoop, half credit, fall semester)

                Media Literacy (Shmoop, half credit, spring semester)

 

If she doesn't do foreign language, I'll probably enroll in her an art class and study art history for her fine arts credit.

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I'm no help on math. 

 

On the ASL front . . . I know there is a former Landry teacher who is continuing to teach ASL. If you want to look into that teacher/class, check out this post. The poster, counselinggirl, could tell you how the first semester of the class went and you might be able to get more reviews from checking out his students' posts (if you are on Facebook). You could leave that off the schedule next year to see how the post-Landry situation goes. If it looks like a good teacher/class, it should still be available in 10th or 11th grade. (Or, you might find an in-person class that works better by then, too.)

 

Try to not over-schedule 9th grade. Honestly, it is better to go light & leave time for interests (art, creative writing) than err in the opposite direction. Leaving off the foreign language but including the electives, you have a solid six credits including the art classes - plus the athletics. (Read some of the threads on counting the passions as credits vs. using them as extra curricular. I'd leave the tumbling/trampoline off the transcript for now.)

 

Good luck!

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I'm starting to plan for next year and I'm trying to decide what courses would be good for DD. She does not enjoy academics, particularly science or math (especially math!), though she does like reading, creative writing and art. She's dyslexic. Humor or "fun" and/or highly visual classes work better than studying from a textbook.

 

I've been lurking on the boards for weeks, and researching until I'm dizzy, but I still don't have a clear plan for some subjects.

 

 

Good for you planning so early! i didn't start the researching until I'm dizzy point for 9th grade until about a week before 9th grade commenced! Yikes!

 

For math - we really like WHA (Wilson Hill) and have used them for Geometry & Alg II so far, for a mathy kid. But I plan on having my less mathy DD follow suit beginning in Geometry as well, as the explanations seem very good yet the time commitment not so much. For Alg I, I plan to teach her via Dolciani. I've also heard Jann in TX's math class is great for more struggling math kids.

 

Other than that, I concur to stick with 6 credits and don't overschedule!

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I like Math-U-See for my non-mathy dd. 

 

Sorry, I don't know anything about Shmoop.

 

We use Build Your Library, but you are using it now, so it must not be a good fit.

 

Do you have an option for dual enrollment? My dd takes ASL through DE and that has been great. She is also a member of two local ASL groups. They have been a huge benefit in her learning to sign.

 

We don't have to follow the requirements of the public students in this state, so I never bother to list PE. We use sports as important extra-curricular activities on college applications.

 

 

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For math you can look at Derek Owens. While we have not taken classes from him, we do know him and he offers solid classes.

Also while your state may only require 2 years of foreign language, you should also look at the colleges your DC may have an interest in. While a lot just wants 2 years, some do want 3 years.

Like the PP said, don't try to make 9th grade too heavy. Aim for 6 credits and you can do a half credit the summer before 9th to knock out subjects like health, PE or other fun elective.

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I like Math-U-See for my non-mathy dd. 

 

Sorry, I don't know anything about Shmoop.

 

We use Build Your Library, but you are using it now, so it must not be a good fit.

 

Do you have an option for dual enrollment? My dd takes ASL through DE and that has been great. She is also a member of two local ASL groups. They have been a huge benefit in her learning to sign.

 

We don't have to follow the requirements of the public students in this state, so I never bother to list PE. We use sports as important extra-curricular activities on college applications.

 

Actually, we really like Build Your Library, but I don't like their subjects for 9th grade. 

 

We do have an option for dual enrollment, but I don't know if DD will be ready this upcoming year, since she's young for her grade. I will definitely keep it in mind for next year, though. 

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We started algebra in the spring of 8th grade and did health over the summer, so my son started 9th grade with a full credit under his belt. That took some pressure off - although I think we still over loaded a bit. Actually he almost never had homework on weekends and got As in his two outsourced classes, so I guess we did OK.

 

For algebra we started off with Prentice Hall and then switched to Holt (more or less a totally lateral move, thank goodness). I like Holt because you can customize it so much. The 2012 editions have iBooks that can be read on a Mac or an iPad, and they have embedded quizzes and videos. I have the Teacher One Stop CDs with printable tests, quizzes, worksheets, reviews, etc. They have resources for struggling students and advanced students.

 

I like Holt science textbooks with the One Stop resource CDs. Often you can find the tests & quizzes and such online with some google skillz. Oak Meadow and Kolbe sell syllabi with answer keys which can sometimes be cheaper than buying the teacher resources. You can watch videos at Brightstorm or on their YouTube channel) for help explaining math and science concepts.

 

Essentials in Writing has video lessons & organizers that teach how to write different kinds of essays and a research paper. We use that and literature guides to cover English. I usually get him the Kindle version of the book and a copy of the audiobook (though he doesn't always use it). I'm going to have my son start writing his papers in the Grammarly app to help him fix his syntax and spelling (he is also very dyslexic).

 

I'm never good at implementing a living books approach - too many pieces to fiddle with and too difficult to figure out what to emphasize. Despite his dyslexia, I do rely a lot on textbook learning. He is getting better at taking notes and studying. We are getting a Learning Ally membership in case he does better with having his textbooks read aloud while he reads along (Learning Ally can be bought for only $80 through the Homeschool Buyers Co-Op - normally $135).  AGS has a selection of textbooks with grade-level content but a lower reading level (their "alternative" level), and that can be good for some kids. My homeschool program recommends them as a default because they are easy to use and have good support materials.

 

That's the kind of stuff that works for us - YMMV, of course :).

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So, tentatively:


this summer: Critical Thinking & Study Skills (half credit)


 


MUS Algebra I 


Shmoop English 9 with Spelling You See 


Guesthollow's biology


world geography - undecided provider


Art 1 (local class throughout the year, plus art history a couple of times a week)


Shmoop Media Literacy (half credit, fall semester)


Athletics - tumbling & trampoline


 


DD wanted tumbling as a school credit so she would have "something I'm good at", and decided she wanted to do biology for science. I recently realized that while she's studied the history of the world more than once, she doesn't really know anything about other modern cultures.  :ohmy: Anyone know of a good cultural geography course?


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Looks good to me.  Are you the one whose dd is actually in the circus/performing company?  Or am I mixing you up ?  Does your dd plan to do these athletics in college?  I ask because you may need NCAA certification for your courses if that is the case.  Homeschoolers must jump through certain hoops for their courses to count for NCAA.

 

I think the SCHMOOP courses look fun, but I am not sure they're super rigourous, so if your dd really loves English and is advanced in that subject, it may be better to use another online class, where she might be more challenged.  I've found the public-school-targeted online courses to be a lot less interesting and rigorous than the private ones we've used from Landry, Apologia, PA Homeschoolers, etc.  If she's just "meh" about reading and literature than you may as well use your subscription and see how it goes though.  (I myself am looking at Schmoop because of the UC A-G certfication but still trying to understand how Schmoop works.)

 

Also, the study skills class might be super non-necessary depending upon your own dd's needs.  For example my son came into 9th grade knowing how to use flashcards, organize his binders and folders, put them in the proper tabs, take notes, and outline, as well as, for the most part how to study.  I had him signed up for a study skills class and then my psp director was like, "Um why?  He knows how to study and be organized."  I am glad we dropped it because 9th grade has been a lot of work, and he is super busy as it is.  Have you used Quizlet?  My son loves it and he is teaching my dd how to use it.  

 

If she doesn't need that study skills class then, I would disagree with PP's and say 9th grade is the best time to take foreign language because 10th and 11th grade are way harder, and it's better to have momentum going into them.  That's my personal opinion though and I am a big one for momentum :)  

 

Also I have MANY friends that LOVE MUS so you can't go wrong there.  But you may also want to check out Derek Owens.  My dd is thriving with his Pre-Alg.  THere are a lot of vidoes, practice pages and they grade her homework and tests within about 24 hours.  She loves the outside feedback and he has a clear, calm voice that is enjoyable to listen to, as well as being a good math teacher.  We are very happy and my son will be switching over to DO next year too.  It's 58.00 per month-ish.  I am not saying it's better than MUS but we like that there's someone actually grading it.  Also, he actually answers emails if you get stuck or have other problems and questions.  We feel it is a great deal for the 600 or so dollars!!  

 

 

 

 

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Actually, we really like Build Your Library, but I don't like their subjects for 9th grade. 

 

We do have an option for dual enrollment, but I don't know if DD will be ready this upcoming year, since she's young for her grade. I will definitely keep it in mind for next year, though. 

If you want to skip to the 10th grade it is supposed to be the first half of World History and Biology as the science. I think she plans to have it out this summer.

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Just chiming in to say that I think your daughter is my son's twin, lol. I'm planning 9th, too, and my son is dyslexic (his trouble area is spelling at this point and not reading), and loves creative writing, literature, film, and art. hehe I will have to look up some of the things you're using (which I've never heard of). I'm not planning to cater much to my son's dyslexia, though, as he does well in every subject except spelling... which technically we don't even have to cover any more. I just would like to get his spelling to a manageable level. How is your daughter's spelling? 

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  • 2 months later...

If you want to skip to the 10th grade it is supposed to be the first half of World History and Biology as the science. I think she plans to have it out this summer.

This summer you say? That's great news as that's exactly what we're studying in 9th (keeping with New York high school schedule).
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