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NormaElle

SOTW - inconsistent recall

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We are up to volume 3 of SOTW, which seems to be a big jump conceptually from 2. My kids (grades 7, 6, and 5) are having a harder time remembering details from some (many?) chapters, and narrations are more difficult for them to produce. (Their writing in general is fine - the oldest is thriving with WWS1 and the others are doing well with WWE.)

 

My third grader is totally confused and I have more or less told her she can wait to start history again when we start the cycle again in a year and a half.

 

Is this common? Is there a trick to making this book easier to understand? I find the stories more tedious myself (Thirty Years' War, details about Mogul India, etc.)

 

I don't mind being told to just keep going. I just don't want to miss anything major.

 

(To clarify - this is our third year homeschooling, and we are primarily using SOTW for our first run-through of history. We do a lot of the AG recommended readings, map work, and some independent reading/primary sources/critical thinking for the older ones.)

 

Thank you for your wisdom.

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At this stage you are only trying to introduce your children to history. Later, when they revisit the topics they will remember bits and build on it. Please don't stress about it!

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One thing I find helpful is to glance ahead in the reading and put the names of significant people and places on the chalkboard where the kids can see it while we go through the chapter. I realised that so many of the names are from other languages and the kids can't really picture them to remember. It's helped a lot in narrations.

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I take notes on the whiteboard while I read and then we do the map work (from the activity book) and then they take the tests (from the separate test booklet). I've found doing these things really helps. I am NOT an auditory learner so it's helpful for me as well as the kids!

 

ETA: I have a 3rd grader and a 7th grader. 

Edited by importswim

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Would it help to have them pre-read the selection? Or you give them a heads up about what questions will come up? Are you trying to get through a whole chapter at once? If so, break it down into the individual sections.

 

My oldest is language and history strong but she didn't really struggle with SOTW 3 in third grade.

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Definitely to what Hobbes said. It helps a lot.  I also found that the books don't lend themselves to a "Charlotte Mason" style narration very well because they are less narrative and more factual.  I stopped looking for a narration and focussed more on a summary. In book 4 my (4th grade) students wrote a summary paragraph once or twice a week instead of a narration.  We worked on topic sentences and conclusions together.  It made a nice book of Centuries for their learning.  I also found other more narrative books to supplement with, but that is easier with Ancients and Medieval.  For the American portions you could do the Joy Hakim books. 

 

Edited by SRoss5
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