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mmi783

Overwhelmed with Science- is it to late ?

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It's been quite a while since I've been on here. So here's some information...My son is 13 years old (14 in Sept) he has apraxia. We have been slowly conquering reading which means he can't do a lot of reading independently. Writing out sentences, means I dictate, spell, and a lot of writing is very tiring for him.

We have always done Apologia Science ( Botany, Zoology 1, 2 and a most of 3) loved it. We are part way through General Science, it took the longest time to get into the flow through the history, and scientific method etc... Now that we are on the tale end of Geology/ Fossil record, I find it not bad , I love the text and how it is written, and then we start to dwindle. He can fill in his notebook with me helping, experiments we talk about them and then read what happens, we will do the odd one here and there . I can never plan far enough ahead to have everything available plus doing 3-4 in a week is too time consuming. he doesn't do the study guide, I ask the test questions verbally, and usually does well.

Our homeschool conference is next month, and back in Sept I thought I would continue on with Apologia all the way through, however I find I spent a lot of money and am not using the majority of the tools, plus our love for learning Science has dwindled. I know we are behind, we stop school at the end of May/ first of June. So I had thought of finishing what was left in the start of next year, and then make up or pull some stuff from here and there with unit studies or find another curriculum. I found the jump from the elementary Apologia books to this one drastic. We went from a 2-3 day/ week interesting study to a rigorous 5 day/week crazy schedule.

  I came across Noeo Science and was intrigued, the variety of books (not a textbook) appeal to me and I am sure to him (he's an auditory learner) I was also looking at Christian Kids Explore quickly. I guess I want to put the fun back in Science, and have something that is not so rigorous, I can become an "army general", and too structured very easy. For example  : he has a really nice electromagnet kit he got for Christmas, I won't let him open yet as I want to use it, but feel I can't as we have so much in our Apologia left to do.

We farm and I have a feeling he will be headed that way, I want to put that spark back into Science for him. I had a boy who loved learning about fossils, making cat traps with baskets and pulleys, he's watched countless operations,and we are hatching chicks right now. I feel like it is to late for this fun stuff, that it's time to get down to the nitty gritty. Anybody have any suggestions ?

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Well I'd feel free to dump Gen Science pronto, since it sounds like such a poor fit. Sell it and move on. Things happen. He's 7th grade this year. It doesn't matter what you do. Dump it and move on.

 

The apraxia is not causing the reading disability. Has he had evals for dyslexia? He may have multiple SLDs going on, from what you're saying. Might be good to get evals if you haven't yet.

 

And yes, take his science further out of the box. Have you ever looked at TOPS? LoriD had a schedule where she combined TOPS units and the high school apologia texts. My ds is really enjoying TOPS right now, so I'm assuming we'll continue it a long time. Easy to add any spine reading to.

Edited by OhElizabeth

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Funny you say to just dump it, I was thinking the same thing when I was doing chores later this afternoon.

We got him evaluated when he was younger. I dug out the report and our psychologist said that "He did not present with a specific learning disability. His reading difficulties are related to a general cognitive profile that is somewhat weak , coupled with a phonological awareness deficit that is likely associated with his developmental apraxia." I personally find he does have some dyslexic tendencies, we still struggle with B and D confusion, and number reversal pops up sometimes

 I have recently been in contact with a homeschool mom who is a teacher and taught at a private school for kids with learning disabilities. She is helping a lot. He has come a long way but gets discouraged very easily, and his confidence in reading is low.

What is TOPS ?

Thank you for the information Marjorie

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Have you looked at DIVE Science? Dive Earth Science is all audio lectures with links to vocabulary practices and review questions. There are downloadable free sheets to take notes while watching the lectures. The labs are all audio with screen shots. The program comes with a downloadable lab notebook or you can order it printed. There are 3 different formats, and one is an ecourse which includes grading. 

 

Dive Earth Science

 

Our co-op is using this next year with 7th-9th/10th graders. We are going to add in some additional things for those doing it for H.S. credit.

 

 

 

 

 

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How long ago were the evaluations? You might get a clearer picture of the issues if they are updated. I don't know much about apraxia, but I agree that it sounds like dyslexia is a possibility.

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We used Apologia General Science. DD15 did it mostly independently, and for her it was kind of a slog. Science is a great subject to explore with more hands-on materials and less reading.

 

I think it would be fine to make science more fun and more about exploration at this age. If he spends less time and mental energy on it, you can apply more of time to remediation of the reading and writing.

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My ds (14) has a history of apraxia. Most kids with apraxia have additional learning difficulties in addition to the apraxia, but often they don't become apparent until the apraxia has been treated. His initial tests done when he was small had Childhood Apraxia of Speech as the primary dx and brain encephalothpy nos as a secondary dx. We had new testing done at ages seven and ten, when it seemed that his learning had hit a plateau. He received updated dx of mixed expressive/receptive language disorder as primary dx, while CAS and brain encephalothopy nos were secondary at age 7. At age 10 we saw a neurodevelopmental psychologist for testing - this did not produce a change in dx, but offered a lot of info on how he needs information presented and what his strengths and weaknesses are. This info enabled me to discern how to restructure our home learning to better meet his needs. It also led us to a new speech tx with expertise in mixed experessive/receptive. She has been a wonderful partner. Ds is not working at grade level - he is about 2-3 years behind, but we make slow steady progress. I would encourage looking at new evals - a neuro-development psychologist is well equipped to do the testing you need and as well as provide you with some good strategies to address whatever learning needs are uncovered.

As far as a new science curriculum, you might check out Pacemaker. They have most of the sciences with content needed for 7-12 grade, but at a 3-6 grade reading level. The text is vey concise and is allowing ds to progress through the text without spending days wading through dense text (he can read outloud at grade level).

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Walch PowerBasics is another that has traditional high school content with a reduced reading level. I think there are others.

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Thank you everyone. A lot of information and sites to look at. With his speech we are finished with speech therapy, we he was towards the tale end he was tested and was above his age in speech and vocabulary. I find with his reading it is mainly certain sounds that provide the glitches, for example what sound ea makes in a word, just little things here and there. He really hates reading pretend stories. I don't know how many of you have used AAR, but for example he read the legend of William Tell in his reader no problem just flew through it. One of the next stories was about  2 bugs that were in a library overnight, and that was totally painful.  To me that's some behaviour and reading comprehension .

We finished with All About Reading level 4, now we are continuing on with All About Spelling, they have been the only curriculum that has worked out of many. I find with my schedule it was too much for me to be doing anything more then some grammar and All About Reading, along with all the other subjects math, science etc... which probably caused some of the inconsistencies. Now that we are finished with AAR I have the freedom to go back and narrow down the areas which we have problems with.

He likes to be right when he reads something. To try and get him to read something on his own to skip a word if he doesn't know it, then to continue finishing reading the sentence to figure out that word is, we are just getting to that point. We just met the homeschool mom/teacher who is going to help/tutor. I have some exercises to work with first so I will try her and see how that goes. She has taught quite a few dyslexic kids in our area how to read. If we are still not there in the next while then I will look into testing again. I really was not impressed with our psychologist, she was suggested by many to me as the best in the province. However when it come to understanding homeschooling she wasn't very helpful. I left there feeling very low and alone.

Once again thank you for all your help and suggestions

 

 

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We like TOPScience too.  No reading troubles here, but TOPScience is fun, practical, hands-on, student-led (as in, I don't have to prepare a lot of stuff), and very easy to tie to extended reading.

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