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Judy in Tennessee

Will begin in fall...with a 7th grader...yikes!!!

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I will begin homeschooling my youngest grandson in the fall and I'm out of my element! So much information, so little time! We are pulling him out of public school due to problems with bullying. He always retaliates and gets in trouble so, instead of constant calls from the school, my daughter is pulling him. With only 5 weeks left, we are keeping out fingers crossed to finish out this year without any more incidents.

Anyway, I feel relatively comfortable with Language Arts, Social Studies, etc. My concerns are, of course, Math and Science as they were not my best subjects in school myself. Any advise for a new homeschooler for curriculum that will grab him? He is smart...and I think some of his problems at school have also been due to boredom. I'm looking at Math Mammoth or Singapore Math. In Science, I believe we are going to concentrate on the Life Sciences this term.

Any suggestions would be appreciated!

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Your daughter and grandson are fortunate to have your support.  Here are a couple of ideas in response to your "grab him" question...

You may want to check out the Life of Fred math books.  My 7th grade son reads them for pleasure in his spare time.  The books cover math topics with a dose of humor.  We don't use the books as our "official" math curriculum.  

For history studies, my kids liked the Legends & Lies series produced by Bill O'Reilly.  We watched the Patriots and the Civil War episodes.

Also for history, my kids enjoyed Liberty's Kids.  It's a historical fiction cartoon series focused on the American Revolution time period.  I think a 7th grader would find it enjoyable unless he already knows all there is to know about that time period (in other words, if the kid is highly adept in his history studies, then he may not appreciate this cartoon).

All of my kids enjoy music, so The Sound of Music DVD was a hit when we studied the Anschluss.  While it didn't offer much in terms of history studies, it was a good conversation starter on many topics related to that time period.  

Hope that helps...

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For math, Rod and Staff is so good in the way it lays out the teaching examples and in the TM for how to teach. I love it through 8th grade. I haven't used the others. 

For science in 7th grade my DD did a co-op class with Science in the Age of Reason. It says through 6th grade, but was great for her. The hands on activities and journaling prompts are super simple for a middle schooler to follow on his own. Then she chose a Thinking Tree journal and got to choose a topic of her choice for further study. We chose a spine to use and a television series to use with it, and she followed the prompts in the journal each day as far as output for that. She chose marine animals. So she used an animal encyclopedia we had and a series on Netflix to watch weekly. That was a really good addition to her year which worked on multiple skills beyond just science. And I truly was almost completely out her science that year. 

Another way to go is with Memoria Press. There are almost no hands on activities in their middle school science packs. But we've always learned a lot when we used their materials. But we just added on our own stuff- like when learning about birds, we spent a lot of time outside in nature parks birdwatching, went to some Audobon society meetings, and even hatched some chicks in an incubator. 

 

 

Edited by 2_girls_mommy
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Welcome, Judy!

We began homeschooling our daughter when she was a 7th grader, and she's now been out of college for five years. (Time flies!)

What a wonderful gift you're giving your grandson. I wish you both every success!

Regards,

Kareni

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Welcome to the boards!! I live in TN too and it is an easy state to homeschool in. Will you be registering with the public school system or using an umbrella school?

I am sure you will learn lots from reading here. Math curricula have free placement tests and samples available. You have plenty of time to make a plan for the fall. Nice that your grandson will have the summer to unwind from a negative school experience. 

Some general advice:

Focus on math and language arts first. Content subjects like science and history are super fun, but less important. 

Be flexible! Plan A might not work. Make sure he knows this too. 

Homeschooling is not school-at-home, so enjoy the perks. Go to the zoo and museums. Give him, free time to read or pursue his interests, serve in the community, or earn money. Read aloud! Use non books-and-paper ways of learning. See what is available for homeschoolers in your area for field trips.

At his age, I'd let history and science be largely interest driven. Allow him some say in what you do. What does he love? 

Plan for some extra curriculars or athletics, but preserve some free time. Keep in mind his personality type - introverted/extroverted can make a huge difference in what he needs. Will he continue with activities he's already doing?

Online classes can be great, but in your situation, I'd stick to light ones rather than intense ones with lots of work and deadlines. Outschool has fun ones. Center for Lit has great read and discuss classes that meet once a month, like a book club. 

Is he looking forward to homeschooling? Is the plan for him to go back to public school in 8th or 9th? 

hth, a little anyway! Enjoy the journey!

 

 

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Our initial plan was to use an umbrella school but have run into problems due to the disciplinary process at his school. So, we are going to go independent maybe until high school and then go with an umbrella. Thanks for the advice! We don't want to use any online classes as we don't think that his his learning style. We plan to enroll him in some enrichment courses offered by the local home school education association.

Thanks for the advice on concentrating on math and language arts in the beginning. I think that will work best for him. He is an avid reader and I will use that love of reading when I start introducing history and geography as well as science. He also wants to learn Spanish so I'm looking into a way to include that maybe after the winter break.

He is so looking forward to homeschooling! With only 4 weeks left in the school year, keeping him on track to finish without any other incidents is top priority.

I'll be checking these boards more as I start selecting curriculum and beginning our journey!

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16 hours ago, Kareni said:

Welcome, Judy!

We began homeschooling our daughter when she was a 7th grader, and she's now been out of college for five years. (Time flies!)

What a wonderful gift you're giving your grandson. I wish you both every success!

Regards,

Kareni

Thanks, Kareni! I'm looking forward to it and to using these boards for help!

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