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Nart

Doing one subject intensively, how to fit in the rest?

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For various reasons, I am concentrating on having my kids (5th and 7th grade) learn Spanish this year. Right now they are doing between 16 and 18 hours a week of Spanish.   I am trying to fit in language arts, math, science, and history but there just isn't enough time to fit it all in.   If you spend 3 to 4 hours a day on one subject, how do you manage to fit in everything?

After Spanish my goal is for them to improve their writing and learn grammar. My oldest has always done really well in writing in public school, but I don't think the standards are very high. This is our first year homeschooling, so I really want them to enjoy the year.

So the 7th grader is doing:

IEW Intensive Level B, Fix-It Grammar, Writing with Skills I, Outsiders Novel Study, and I ordered Caesar's English and Vocabulary from Classical Roots but those books haven't arrived. I am thinking if I am concentrating on having him learn a substantial amount of Spanish vocabulary this year maybe I should just skip English Vocabulary? 

Math- He could be doing Foerster Algebra, but when he goes back to a brick and mortar school he is going to have to do Common Core Integrated Math 1, which is a combination of Algebra and Geometry). Our district does not really allow kids to accelerate. Kids in the accelerated math path do Honors Common Core Math 7 then Honors Common Core Math 8 with CPM. It would be easier just to have him do MUS Algebra 1 first semester and see how it goes. Right now he is working in a program called Illustrative Math that has some interesting word problems. It is more teacher intensive than I would like. 

We haven't been getting to Story of the World 4  because I am still waiting for the Activity book and questions for SotW.  My oldest loves Modern History and enjoys reading historical fiction. He is reading Band of Brothers right now for pleasure. I keep flip/flopping on science. I think I am just going to do interest led - they both want to study fish. 

Oh, and we may be able to borrow a Mindstorm EV3 robot to use the first semester. My son enjoyed using it at school in a gifted enrichment after school class but was frustrated that the groups were really big and he was always stuck with at least one kid who wouldn't cooperate and would take parts the team needed to build or kids who goofed off. 

Any advice on how to fit in everything or prioritize would be appreciated. 

 

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Immersion.

Do math, science and history using Spanish textbooks or regular books—going back to a level where they can understand the Spanish , if needed.  

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You are planning *WAY* too much for English language arts. Do IEW and Fix-It and skip the rest. That covers writing, grammar, and vocabulary. There’s no reason to double up. Actually, with as much Spanish as you’re doing, I’d probably skip English altogether and just do a little writing from history or science. 

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Seriously.  Two full English programs?  Why?  Just pick one.  I'd skip vocabulary, too, and stress cognates this year between English and Spanish.

Plan by time, not content.  Give yourself X amount of time with each subject.  What is doable?  What is left on the table?  It'll work itself out as you go along.

ETA: 2nd Gen's idea isn't a bad one.  SOTW 4 stresses outlines and written narrations.  You can skip English unless you want to do something quick for it or just do the novel studies.

Edited by HomeAgain
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Why all the LA stuff on top of the spanish????????? Ditch all that, every drop. If this is the year for spanish, it's the year for spanish, not english. So you read spanish, speak, spanish, grammar spanish, write spanish. If they want to pleasure write, that's their business. Drop the english stuff entirely.

Two, why SOTW with those ages? Ditch all that and study the history of Spain or spanish speaking countries, hello. How did all these countries get to speaking spanish? Do reports on them weekly, read current events around them, cook them.

Yes, do math. Science, sure, get something on fish, something they can pursue with a mixture of self-driven projects (since they sound motivated) and reading (since they're excellent readers).

You didn't pull them out to recreate school or even recreate what other people are doing homeschooling, so stop diluting your vision. If your vision is spanish, go all the way baby.

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I agree with the others about doubling up on language arts for both languages.

I homeschool bilingually, and a noun is a noun in any language. There is no need to double up on grammar, or even vocabulary. We often alternated, because I still wanted them to remember the academic language of subjects and be able to discuss in the language, it just didn't need to be done at the same time. In fact, by the time my oldest hit 7th and she did a vocabulary program through an online school, it came easy because of the language base she had (a lot of cognates!). 

Like Pen mentioned, do a subject or a few in Spanish. Or have the supplemental in Spanish. We've gone both ways. Most history was in English (it's what I could find at the time) with Spanish read alouds and/or readers. You will definitely get an education on the viewpoints if you get the history in Spanish, which I was able to do later in our homeschool journey. I was able to find a lot of science topics in Spanish, so science was mostly Spanish, with some English books on the side. We also did math in Spanish up to a certain point (the point being my fluency ability at the time). 

All of this was with my oldest, whom I graduated last year. It is a little different with my youngest (3rd grade), as I try to balance her two languages with a third language. I did not do well integrating the third language with my oldest.

It is totally possible to do what you are doing; you just need to streamline the subjects. 

 

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Thanks everyone who responded. The problem is that my boys are no where near fluent enough to be able to learn History, Math, or English in Spanish. 

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On 8/30/2019 at 2:56 PM, PeterPan said:

Why all the LA stuff on top of the spanish????????? Ditch all that, every drop. If this is the year for spanish, it's the year for spanish, not english. So you read spanish, speak, spanish, grammar spanish, write spanish. If they want to pleasure write, that's their business. Drop the english stuff entirely.

Two, why SOTW with those ages? Ditch all that and study the history of Spain or spanish speaking countries, hello. How did all these countries get to speaking spanish? Do reports on them weekly, read current events around them, cook them.

Yes, do math. Science, sure, get something on fish, something they can pursue with a mixture of self-driven projects (since they sound motivated) and reading (since they're excellent readers).

You didn't pull them out to recreate school or even recreate what other people are doing homeschooling, so stop diluting your vision. If your vision is spanish, go all the way baby.

 

I love this quote. I am going to have to keep saying it myself when I start panicking we aren't doing enough in English. The reason for SOTW Modern History is that my oldest son loves Modern History. He really wants to learn about WW1,  WW2, the Cold War, Korean War, Vietnam, etc.  He is not interested at all in Spanish/Latin American History unless it is current like the Venezuelan crisis. To really understand the situation, it is helpful to know about the Cold War. 

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46 minutes ago, Nart said:

Thanks everyone who responded. The problem is that my boys are no where near fluent enough to be able to learn History, Math, or English in Spanish. 

OK, still doable. 

How much Spanish do they know now? How will they be studying Spanish 3-4 hours a day (classes, texts, shows, reading, etc.)? As you are doing Modern History, find Spanish readers about the same subject. SOTW has book lists; some of the lower level books are translated into Spanish. It will still have some hard vocabulary, but they will learn by reading it and being exposed to the concepts in both languages. Same with science.

If you want to do the IEW writing, just drop vocabulary, writing skills, and novel study. IEW is intense and contains all the writing skill instruction you need. They will be learning vocabulary through their reading (in both languages!). Incorporate Spanish writing by having them summarize their history reading in "as much Spanish as possible" (using what they know from Spanish study and reading related books) once or twice a week.

This is a start. I think it would help to know what you plan to do for Spanish, though.

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4 hours ago, Nart said:

Thanks everyone who responded. The problem is that my boys are no where near fluent enough to be able to learn History, Math, or English in Spanish. 

 

Are you sure?

take a look at something like the Larousse one volume encyclopedia in Spanish 

El Pequeno Larousse Ilustrado 2016 (Spanish Edition) https://www.amazon.com/dp/6072111351/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_xv1ADbPQBYT6W

lots of pictures  and could maybe learn a lot without huge Spanish knowledge, I think.  

 

I had what I think was first edition of this book which gets into a little history part way through:

Easy Spanish Reader w/CD-ROM: A Three-Part Text for Beginning Students (Easy Reader Series) https://www.amazon.com/dp/0071603387/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_Mq1ADbWVB0MAA

 

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Or use nonfiction in Spanish intended for first grade ish.  

 

Or something like this:

Math Content Picture Dictionary https://www.amazon.com/dp/1569112754/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_iB1ADbGN5KG2X

Or both English and Spanish versions of math text for their levels, such as:  HIGH SCHOOL MATH COMMON CORE VERSION SPANISH ALGEBRA 1 STUDENT EDITION https://www.amazon.com/dp/0133198634/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_WD1ADbRM9B8HX

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Our public library has a children’s Spanish book section.  Some children’s illustrated books tell simplified versions of about someone like Cesar Chavez ...  in Spanish, or side by side Spanish and English...  I’d say that counts as history in Spanish . 

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5 hours ago, Nart said:

 

I love this quote. I am going to have to keep saying it myself when I start panicking we aren't doing enough in English. The reason for SOTW Modern History is that my oldest son loves Modern History. He really wants to learn about WW1,  WW2, the Cold War, Korean War, Vietnam, etc.  He is not interested at all in Spanish/Latin American History unless it is current like the Venezuelan crisis. To really understand the situation, it is helpful to know about the Cold War. 

With your son’s love of modern history, I would just provide him with lots of books and documentaries and let him follow his interests. If he wants to do activities with SOTW, let him choose to do so during free time. Given his level of interest, I wouldn’t worry about comprehension questions unless you want to do it informally as time allows. Personally, I think being fluent in a second language is a wonderful gift to give a child, and at their ages, I think it’s worth sacrificing some other things to achieve that goal. As long as they stay up with math and do some basic English, history and science can be almost completely independent and interest led at their ages. Sometimes people will save science experiments or history projects for the weekend or evenings and get everyone involved. My husband took on most of the interest led science with my son until high school and it just naturally became part of their time together, in addition to what my son pursued on his own.

You can even tie in some literature to history (or even science), through reading and/or audio books, if desired, with little or no need for reading comprehension or analysis, especially for the younger one. We never did any reading comprehension besides discussing books together and my son still aced the verbal sections of the PSAT and SAT. For the older one, you could choose to just analyze one or two novels during the year (if you feel it is necessary) and just read others for pleasure, and discuss as time allows. They will pick up plenty of vocabulary through exposure to quality books and literature. Meal times can often be a good time for discussion, read alouds, or audio books (also car time).

They will already be learning quite a bit about grammar through studying Spanish. I used Analytical Grammar for one intensive year in middle school and it worked very well. During his college years, my son thanked me many times for his deep knowledge of grammar gained from the program. You can also spread it over two or three years. Personally, I’d skip English grammar this year and save it until they are further along in Spanish. I’d choose just one writing program (since that ties in with your goals) and focus on that for formal English. And except for math, have Spanish be the only other thing formally studied this year.

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10 hours ago, Nart said:

my oldest son loves Modern History. He really wants to learn about WW1,  WW2, the Cold War, Korean War, Vietnam, etc.  He is not interested at all in Spanish/Latin American History unless it is current like the Venezuelan crisis. To really understand the situation, it is helpful to know about the Cold War. 

If he's that interested, maybe connect him with some more serious resources? Tapestry of Grace has an associated bookstore where you can search by year. So I'm not saying use TOG, just pick some books to hit that year 4 more in-depth.http://bookshelfcentral.com  At this link pull down TOG, advanced search, limit to year 4, dialectic, and history.

So it's suggesting Albert Marrin books. There are a bunch of really wonderful history writers that are PERFECT for this 7th grade age. Marrin, Freedman, Susan Bartoletti, Jim Murphy... 

                                            Hitler Youth: Growing Up in Hitler's Shadow (Scholastic Focus)                                      

Here's one to get you started. All these authors are about the same level, accessible, bringing more depth and thought. You can use these to flesh out SOTW chapters or step up your spine. Maybe he'd like a spine like this?

                                            The Story of America                                     

Or pick off just the last few volume's of Hakim.                                             A History of US: An Age of Extremes: 1880-1917 A History of US Book Eight                                     

He's a great age to do a National History Day project, btw. National History Day | NHDhttps://www.nhd.org  My dd did it and others here on the board have, so you can get help. This is an AMAZING thing to do.

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On 8/29/2019 at 8:47 PM, Nart said:

For various reasons, I am concentrating on having my kids (5th and 7th grade) learn Spanish this year. Right now they are doing between 16 and 18 hours a week of Spanish.   I am trying to fit in language arts, math, science, and history but there just isn't enough time to fit it all in.   If you spend 3 to 4 hours a day on one subject, how do you manage to fit in everything?

After Spanish my goal is for them to improve their writing and learn grammar. My oldest has always done really well in writing in public school, but I don't think the standards are very high. This is our first year homeschooling, so I really want them to enjoy the year.

So the 7th grader is doing:

IEW Intensive Level B, Fix-It Grammar, Writing with Skills I, Outsiders Novel Study, and I ordered Caesar's English and Vocabulary from Classical Roots but those books haven't arrived. I am thinking if I am concentrating on having him learn a substantial amount of Spanish vocabulary this year maybe I should just skip English Vocabulary? 

Math- He could be doing Foerster Algebra, but when he goes back to a brick and mortar school he is going to have to do Common Core Integrated Math 1, which is a combination of Algebra and Geometry). Our district does not really allow kids to accelerate. Kids in the accelerated math path do Honors Common Core Math 7 then Honors Common Core Math 8 with CPM. It would be easier just to have him do MUS Algebra 1 first semester and see how it goes. Right now he is working in a program called Illustrative Math that has some interesting word problems. It is more teacher intensive than I would like. 

We haven't been getting to Story of the World 4  because I am still waiting for the Activity book and questions for SotW.  My oldest loves Modern History and enjoys reading historical fiction. He is reading Band of Brothers right now for pleasure. I keep flip/flopping on science. I think I am just going to do interest led - they both want to study fish. 

Oh, and we may be able to borrow a Mindstorm EV3 robot to use the first semester. My son enjoyed using it at school in a gifted enrichment after school class but was frustrated that the groups were really big and he was always stuck with at least one kid who wouldn't cooperate and would take parts the team needed to build or kids who goofed off. 

Any advice on how to fit in everything or prioritize would be appreciated.

It sounds like you have prioritized. You've prioritized Spanish for a variety reasons that are sensible, valid and true for your family.

What I gather from your first post is that Spanish is #1 this year. Writing is #2, Math is #3 and the content that you want to cover is fish-based science and modern history.

I think you're making a mistake to purchase 6 different English ELA resources. I'd return or sell them. They're inappropriate for this year and will likely make you feel like you HAVE to get to them or you're not doing enough. To start I would focus on Spanish and start with a 3-6 week unit on writing paragraphs--make sure that you guys do a nice solid paragraph or three each week and make sure that they learn what a good paragraph is.

Then go to the library and stock up on books about fish and modern history. Have them read from that material for 45-60 minutes and write a paragraph the next day day based on what they read. Review strong paragraphs every so often. Around January, start working on longer essays and/or reports with your older kid.

I wouldn't delay letting my history-interested kid read from SOTW 4. When the questions arrived, I'd use them to gauge his retention of whatever he's read to date from that book.


 

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I agree with the others about dropping the English language arts.

However, if you want to focus on writing, you need first to focus on content such as history and science.  Students need something to write about, and the better they understand what they're writing about, the better their writing will be.  

I would also keep going with math.

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I don’t make any attempt to fit it all in. DD likes to go super-deep and super-fast on 1-2 topics at a time. When she’s doing that, we drop nearly everything else. Will it really hurt them to simply not do history, science, or English this year?

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5 hours ago, PeterPan said:

If he's that interested, maybe connect him with some more serious resources? Tapestry of Grace has an associated bookstore where you can search by year. So I'm not saying use TOG, just pick some books to hit that year 4 more in-depth.http://bookshelfcentral.com  At this link pull down TOG, advanced search, limit to year 4, dialectic, and history.

So it's suggesting Albert Marrin books. There are a bunch of really wonderful history writers that are PERFECT for this 7th grade age. Marrin, Freedman, Susan Bartoletti, Jim Murphy... 

                                            Hitler Youth: Growing Up in Hitler's Shadow (Scholastic Focus)                                      

Here's one to get you started. All these authors are about the same level, accessible, bringing more depth and thought. You can use these to flesh out SOTW chapters or step up your spine. Maybe he'd like a spine like this?

                                            The Story of America                                     

Or pick off just the last few volume's of Hakim.                                             A History of US: An Age of Extremes: 1880-1917 A History of US Book Eight                                     

He's a great age to do a National History Day project, btw. National History Day | NHDhttps://www.nhd.org  My dd did it and others here on the board have, so you can get help. This is an AMAZING thing to do.

This was really helpful! Thank you!

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Like others said, sometimes I just don't do it all. 

Or sometimes we do, but one thing is far less intensified. 

Example: I tend to emphasize history/social studies or science on separate years. We may still technically do each subject, but I'll put two years worth of emphasis in one a year. Last year was a science emphasis year for us. DD 15 had her physical science co-op with labs class. That was her official credit for the year. She did all homework for a full credit class. But our support group's theme for the year was life science for all ages. So she had monthly lecture/activity/lab days that covered biology topics and labs and participated in citizen science field work and went on monthly field trips on the topic. She chose a Thinking Tree science journal for at home and completed a self study unit on botany (which falls under biology) and completed notebooking pages, labs, and helped garden at home. Dd17 was doing astronomy for her 11th grade science course and read a text at home. Both joined the astronomy club at scouts and did a lot of labs there, built telescopes that were donated by NASA, taught the public about astronomy at public events when they joined up with the city astronomy club, and attended special events put on by the city astronomy club on special tooics. With all of that science going on, history took a backseat. Both kids just had a text they read from for the year with occasional discussions and short written assignments. The year before was a heavy Ihistory year where our theme for the year was middle ages through Renaissance . We did activities, joined up with other groups, did monthly field trips, projects, papers, speeches, etc. around history. We did two years worth in that intensive year. And all literature for the last two years was from those time period, so each ended up with a year of World history with middles ages emphasis and Work History with Renaissance emphasis. (The same goes for science. Each year has it's official credit, but the activities may overlap years or be condensed into one intense time period.) This year I'm back to a heavy history year. Luckily dd15 did a lot of her labs for biology last year, and this year is just doing an online biology class without labs. We'll wrap up the year with a lab day and complete any I think shouldn't be missed that weren't done last year, but it won't be much. Instead our support group is having a government themed year, were doing a unit study on history at home and incorporating state history into American history and modern world history, and all field trips, literature, projects, etc. Will be around government or modern history, either american or state. 

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