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Anyone looked at Gather Round yet?


ktgrok
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18 minutes ago, Ktgrok said:

I don't know yet my thoughts on that fully - is it better for kids to do a traditional biology class and retain little to none of it (seriously, can any of us still sketch out the Kreb cycle?) or to be able to identify the plants and wildlife in their local area? Both are knowledge, but we weigh one set of knowledge as more important. Does that mean it is? One is probably more important for going to college, but does that mean it is more important for their adult life? I don't know, I haven't made up my mind. (and they do recommend adding a science lab anyway

So, I was wondering about this - is the bird unit different for different areas of the country so that it is about LOCAL wildlife?   Because even just looking at the songbird thread it becomes clear that the birds I see here in NJ are very different than the birds in Florida or Texas or Arizona or wherever.   

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1 hour ago, Where's Toto? said:

So, I was wondering about this - is the bird unit different for different areas of the country so that it is about LOCAL wildlife?   Because even just looking at the songbird thread it becomes clear that the birds I see here in NJ are very different than the birds in Florida or Texas or Arizona or wherever.   

It is birds of North America, and I'd say a lot of them are birds we might see here - some we never have but we looked up range and sighting maps and we can see most of them here at some point or another. But learning to identify the ones we are reading about has led to comparing those to ones in our yard, which has inspired the kids to learn about the ones in our neighborhood. So we learned about Mallard Ducks one day (well, we did two days I think). Then we went to the park to observe the ducks there, and looked them up, comparing them to the mallard. Basically, it has inspired such an interest as well as general background knowledge that it carries over into learning about our local ones. We put up a bird feeder outside the kitchen window, where we can see it as we eat, and keep our field guides on the table. 

In another lesson in birds we learned that Yellow Bellied Sapsuckers like deciduous trees, and what species in particular. Then there was an activity to learn if any of those were in our neighborhood, and to go outside and identify some of the trees we found. The 7 yr old circled on a page which ones listed we found. The 10 yr old had a page with space to write a list of the ones we found and identified. To do that we used a field guide for our state and the internet, and discussed how the field guide only had native species, versus landscape specimens. (we found crepe myrtle, magnolia, some oaks, something I don't remember,  and red maple (learned it is also called swamp maple, which explained why we had seen them on a hike a few weeks ago in a wetland AND why it is so hard to grow grass near it - it sucks up so much water!). Together we then took a bit of time to figure out which types of oaks we had in the backyard with the help of a youtube video. We've lived here 10 years and never realized we have two different species of oak tree in our back yard - one is a laurel oak  and the other two are live oaks! Then we also did leaf rubbings - to my surprise the 7 yr old was better at it than my artistic 10 yr old. 

IF one just did the worksheets, and followed zero rabbit trails and just read the teacher guide wihtout learning alongside their kid, or providing library books, etc etc it would be weak. But truly, it isn't meant to be used that way. The "lightness" of it is what allows for the time and energy to do all the extra stuff. So I imagine, if I Had a highschooler doing it, they would also be using the rest of their time in some productive way - an internship, a project, starting a business, volunteer work, etc. Plus outside books - so that first lesson when learning about Carl Linnaeus and classifcation, I might also have a highschool student reading a biography at an adult level on him, or maybe reading Darwin's Evolution of the Species, etc. (throwing ideas out there). Or letting them look over the guide and help come up with projects, ideas, etc with me while we had coffee. 

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1 hour ago, Ktgrok said:

As I said, I have no idea if I'd use it with a highschool student. But it certainly had given my younger kids more value at this point than pretty much anything else we've used. The $49 spent, across two kids, so $25 bucks each, had taught us more, and led to more "aha" moments, and deeper understanding across topics, than the things I've spent much more on. Yes, I've also purchased the Burgess Bird Book for a read aloud (could have used the ebook for free) and a few field guides, so that was extra. But we will use the field guides for years and years. The rest was library books and websites - local bird websites, the Cornell website, PBS documentaries, youtube videos, etc. Oh, and a globe and a map we already had, for the geography/mapping sections. To be sure, we've used it for more than the 4-5 weeks it is designed for, and added in some phonics pages for the younger one and grammar for the older one. So more like $25 per month, which includes the two kids. Actually, even my 3 yr old can now identify several birds, and has been learning, and having fun coloring the pictures. AND I've been learning a ton, so really, should count me as one of the students as well. 

Is it perfect? Nope. It the company super professional? Not really, but not sure that's her goal? Is it for most people? Maybe not. But for us, it delivers and then some. And you all know I was here saying the same things you all were when I first found it. ON paper, I get it, it doesn't seem worth it. But in our family, it's been truly priceless. 

This is why I think $50 is a rip-off.  Want a unit on bird migration?  30 second google bring up the following for free (I do this all of the time for my kids.  It is not hard at all.)

https://www.nrs.fs.fed.us/environmental_literacy/1000Herons/local-resources/downloads/1996Migratory-Bird-Day-Educators.pdf (This looks like it is a pretty awesome resource)

http://www.birdday.org/birdday/free-materials

https://www.shareitscience.com/2015/10/bird-migration-tracking-lesson-plans.html

https://nationalzoo.si.edu/migratory-birds/play-migration-game

https://learning.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/05/11/on-the-fly-studying-bird-migration-and-behavior/

https://www.birds.cornell.edu/k12/feathered-friends/

https://www.massaudubon.org/content/download/7007/129231/file/Birds_k-2.pdf

file:///C:/Users/there/Downloads/NIE%20Lesson%204517.pdf

(And this was only skimming the first page of hits)

Edited by 8FillTheHeart
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I don't understand why her followers and consumers are not alarmed by this combination of incompetence and grandiose thinking. I'm not kidding. She's putting out a product that is rife with error and that demonstrates her lack of education. And now she's going to add "all the math for K-12 in the form of 12 workbooks." Her sales went down to nothing, and her takeaway was, "Cool cool cool God is working." Someone without a God complex might have thought, "OK, obviously, a lot of people have looked at my work, chose not to come back for more, and chose not to recommend me to their friends. I need to look at this again, and get some trusted opinions about what I might be missing."

Tom Nichols wrote a book called, "The Death of Expertise." It's possible that people need reminded that choosing to follow ignorance is a choice. It's entirely optional. We could also choose to read and learn from people who know what they're talking about, expand our own knowledge and wisdom, and learn to make better choices. We could actually choose to learn how NOT to be attracted to poor teachers.

https://www.amazon.com/Death-Expertise-Campaign-Established-Knowledge/dp/0190865970/ref=sr_1_2?crid=1AO4OXI8MZLLB&dchild=1&keywords=tom+nichols+death+of+expertise&qid=1586103754&sprefix=tom+nichols+the+d%2Caps%2C215&sr=8-2

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28 minutes ago, 8FillTheHeart said:

This is why I think $50 is a rip-off.  Want a unit on bird migration?  30 second google bring up the following for free (I do this all of the time for my kids.  It is not hard at all.)

https://www.nrs.fs.fed.us/environmental_literacy/1000Herons/local-resources/downloads/1996Migratory-Bird-Day-Educators.pdf (This looks like it is a pretty awesome resource)

http://www.birdday.org/birdday/free-materials

https://www.shareitscience.com/2015/10/bird-migration-tracking-lesson-plans.html

https://nationalzoo.si.edu/migratory-birds/play-migration-game

https://learning.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/05/11/on-the-fly-studying-bird-migration-and-behavior/

https://www.birds.cornell.edu/k12/feathered-friends/

https://www.massaudubon.org/content/download/7007/129231/file/Birds_k-2.pdf

file:///C:/Users/there/Downloads/NIE%20Lesson%204517.pdf

(And this was only skimming the first page of hits)

Oh, I absolutely could. But I won't. 

But with this unit study, I've used lots of those types of resources with it. I wouldn't have otherwise. Plus I very well might not have thought to add in tree identification, for instance. Or a discussion on immigration and migration of people as spin off of migration of animals. Or after learning about shorebirds to then discuss port cities and then what imports and exports are, and have the kids make or find things to trade with eachother. 

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1 minute ago, Ktgrok said:

Oh, I absolutely could. But I won't. 

But with this unit study, I've used lots of those types of resources with it. I wouldn't have otherwise. Plus I very well might not have thought to add in tree identification, for instance. Or a discussion on immigration and migration of people as spin off of migration of animals. Or after learning about shorebirds to then discuss port cities and then what imports and exports are, and have the kids make or find things to trade with eachother. 

It's your $$.    But, if we are discussing this curriculum in general on an open forum with lots of readers, expect people to post that $50/month for a curriculum that absolutely does not achieve the stated marketed objective, regardless of how many grade levels someone might be using it across, is an absurd cost.  

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2 hours ago, 8FillTheHeart said:

It's your $$.    But, if we are discussing this curriculum in general on an open forum with lots of readers, expect people to post that $50/month for a curriculum that absolutely does not achieve the stated marketed objective, regardless of how many grade levels someone might be using it across, is an absurd cost.  

Oh sure. Heck, there are plenty of things other people pay for that I think is way too expensive, or not worth it. It's worth what people will pay for it I guess, same as anything, lol. 

 

Edited by Ktgrok
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And I do think it works for a specific person or type of brain or something. I can look at some other unit studies that are great, but the are lists of ideas. Something about having that physical piece of paper makes a difference for me, as to if it gets done. So a unit study I looked at about dogs would say to look up info on presidential pets. Meh. Something though about a piece of paper, with some nice artwork, that tells me a little tidbit about presidential pets to wet my appetite, and has a place to write down what I learn...that I'll run with. Go figure. It SHOULDN'T make a difference, but it does. And that is what I'm paying for.  Maybe it is sort of like the difference between workbox systems vs lists? In theory they should work the same, but often don't, depending on the person. 

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A few thoughts on high school. I only own 2 units that I plan to use next year spread out over a few months each as a supplement to our science studies (oceans and bird). I like the units, and think they will fit the bill for science exploration/research/writing (practice), and family learning (which is the goal). I will be using it with a Ker, two 5th graders, and an 8th grader. (The 8th grader will also be doing a separate science course so this will be supplemental for him, but I think he will find some of it interesting). As for my high schooler, I cannot imagine having her work through the high school unit. She might even laugh. Truly. I get not everyone is interested in a traditional high school experience . . . and many days I wish I was less attached to the "expectations" perceived or otherwise . . . however, I want my children's experience to be college - prep. For high school, this isn't it. Maybe you could piece together a geography credit, I can see that. Maybe even an English composition credit or maybe? a literature (I don't see any lit analysis though so that would have to be added). . . and maybe an elective but science? what about Biology, chemistry, physics?  Government/economics, US and World History? I  just don't see how you can organize this onto a transcript and how you would get enough hours to equal 5-7 credits per year. . . but that's just me. . . . and I cannot see spending all that money for 1 or 2 credits. . . 

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1 hour ago, seemesew said:

I have been thinking about this (a lot more than I should be, lol! quarantine boredom I guess) and the main problem with GRH  (as far as this group is concerned at least) is that this is a forum made up of people who are following a classical method and usually pretty rigorous. GRH is not rigorous and is a form of unschooling, imo, there is nothing wrong with that but this forum doesn't cater to that demographic.

GRH is not enough for anyone looking to go to college after highschool, but I agree that isn't the main goal for every kid in highschool. I also see its appeal when you don't want to find your own unit studies or extras to go with it. I do feel it is misleading of the company to say it is enough for all grades Prek-12th since a lot of new homeschoolers are going to be mislead by that info, when it is not enough for a college bound kid.

I think there are a LOT of people on these forums that aren't classically homeschooling.   Maybe not many unschoolers, but definitely lots of eclectic and non-classical.   Probably the majority from what I've seen.  

That said, I live where there are a TON of unschoolers.  Tons.   Mainly because we are in a state with absolutely no reporting, notification, testing or anything.    And from what I see, the unschoolers aren't going to be willing to pay that kind of money for a semi-structured all-in-one curriculum.   Most either want very loose or no structure - they aren't looking for a curriculum at all.  Or their kid expresses an interest in some topic and they are going to want something to give their kids so they can explore just that topic, so don't want an all-in-one.    The unschoolers who start to get more structured for high school, it's usually because their kid expresses an interest in going to college so they are trying to do college prep, even if it's a light, heading to community college first, type of prep.  

At least that's what I'm seeing around here as someone who teaches enrichment (science mostly) classes to homeschoolers and sees a LOT of unschoolers. 

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1 hour ago, seemesew said:

I have been thinking about this (a lot more than I should be, lol! quarantine boredom I guess) and the main problem with GRH  (as far as this group is concerned at least) is that this is a forum made up of people who are following a classical method and usually pretty rigorous. GRH is not rigorous and is a form of unschooling, imo, there is nothing wrong with that but this forum doesn't cater to that demographic.

 

I am definitely not a classical homeschooler. My kids' educations are designed around their interests and goals. But, I do expect my kids to be educated to their level of ability. College bound or not, my kids are academically capable of being stretched and facing intellectually challenging materials. A mind is a precious thing to waste.

10 minutes ago, Where's Toto? said:

I think there are a LOT of people on these forums that aren't classically homeschooling.   Maybe not many unschoolers, but definitely lots of eclectic and non-classical.   Probably the majority from what I've seen.  

That said, I live where there are a TON of unschoolers.  Tons.   Mainly because we are in a state with absolutely no reporting, notification, testing or anything.    And from what I see, the unschoolers aren't going to be willing to pay that kind of money for a semi-structured all-in-one curriculum.   Most either want very loose or no structure - they aren't looking for a curriculum at all.  Or their kid expresses an interest in some topic and they are going to want something to give their kids so they can explore just that topic, so don't want an all-in-one.    The unschoolers who start to get more structured for high school, it's usually because their kid expresses an interest in going to college so they are trying to do college prep, even if it's a light, heading to community college first, type of prep.  

At least that's what I'm seeing around here as someone who teaches enrichment (science mostly) classes to homeschoolers and sees a LOT of unschoolers. 

I agree. I cant see unschoolers embracing an all in one curriculum. 

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37 minutes ago, mshanson3121 said:

 

We are not classical homeschoolers by any stretch of the imagination. We are very eclectic, very relaxed, very interest led. And no way on earth is this curriculum anything I would use in our homeschool. Factual errors, grammatical errors, a total lack of depth and higher level critical thinking etc... Any curriculum that recommends elementary school level literature,  a coloring page and Venn diagram for high school? Big fat nope here. 

I also agree that unschoolers won't use this, unless they grab an individual unit to fulfill a child's area of interest. And that is honestly all this program is good for - an interest led unit study here and there for elementary/middle school. Definitely not as a full, comprehensive curriculum. And I even hesitate to recommend it for that due to the errors within. 

However, outside of the people who nab a unit here or there for unit studies, the ones using it as a full time curriculum, and are glowing about it I think are using it for the "God" factor. Meaning (no offense) but they care more about Christian content, than academic content.  There's definitely a cult-like following happening, and it seems to be among those that are of that mindset. 

I am an extremely devout Christian who absolutely cares about faith and reason being incorporated into our daily lives.  But bc I value reason (which all Christians should since God created us human with/for reason....pun intended!), I cannot imagine dismissing academic value.   From my perspective, anyone accepting that premise is making a poorly discerned decision.

Edited by 8FillTheHeart
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On 4/8/2020 at 4:53 PM, mshanson3121 said:

 

 

However, outside of the people who nab a unit here or there for unit studies, the ones using it as a full time curriculum, and are glowing about it I think are using it for the "God" factor. Meaning (no offense) but they care more about Christian content, than academic content.  There's definitely a cult-like following happening, and it seems to be among those that are of that mindset. 

And I say this as a Christian. 

there actually isn't all that much religion in it compared to a lot of Christian curriculum. At least in the unit we used. Yes, you used a Bible verse for copywork each week, but that was about it. I think the continent studies have missionary stories in them. But it certainly is less than what I've seen in the other Christian products we've used. So I don't think that is the draw. 

Honestly, I think people like it because it is fun.

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37 minutes ago, mshanson3121 said:

 

But a lot know her/come to her from MB. 

True, and they may like using a program from someone they associate with Christianity. I just meant the program itself is not super Christian in the way that a lot are. 

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On 4/5/2020 at 11:01 AM, 8FillTheHeart said:

This is why I think $50 is a rip-off.  Want a unit on bird migration?  30 second google bring up the following for free (I do this all of the time for my kids.  It is not hard at all.)

https://www.nrs.fs.fed.us/environmental_literacy/1000Herons/local-resources/downloads/1996Migratory-Bird-Day-Educators.pdf (This looks like it is a pretty awesome resource)

http://www.birdday.org/birdday/free-materials

https://www.shareitscience.com/2015/10/bird-migration-tracking-lesson-plans.html

https://nationalzoo.si.edu/migratory-birds/play-migration-game

https://learning.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/05/11/on-the-fly-studying-bird-migration-and-behavior/

https://www.birds.cornell.edu/k12/feathered-friends/

https://www.massaudubon.org/content/download/7007/129231/file/Birds_k-2.pdf

file:///C:/Users/there/Downloads/NIE%20Lesson%204517.pdf

(And this was only skimming the first page of hits)

This is dangerous for someone who tends to have ADHD... 

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1 hour ago, EmilyGF said:

This is dangerous for someone who tends to have ADHD... 

lol, yup. 

Find a zillion things on the internet, bookmark them, never do any of them because it is overwhelming. That's how my brain handles that. 

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  • 3 weeks later...

Rebecca posted this in her Gather Round fb group yesterday. SO much of this is concerning to me, including the way she phrases how she must do what God told her then in the same sentence says the real concern which is that people might leave her curriculum, the way she elevates her group and insists it is the ONLY one like it that exists, and the way she tries to guilt trip people about her financial situation. 
 

 

“Hey guys, I opened up for you to discuss curriculum in relation to, to use with, or to ask about switching from. This is what has come from it:

1. I am now seeing outside links to other curriculum companies where people are sending others to go buy something else.
2. I am getting emails about people upset that they can't talk about what they don't like about Gather 'Round. 
3. I am getting messages from people who want freedom to promote their own books or curriculum or courses or resources. 

Here is the deal: I try to have grace and an open hand and trust God to defend me and to promote Gather 'Round. But this is God's group for His vision and purpose and something He laid on my heart that I am trying to stewart and bring into fruition. You want a platform to say what you want to say, but I hold a responsibility to do what God has told me to do. These kinds of posts quite literally turn people away, in my own forum, under my own covering, from a group that I put everything into. Like blinders on a horse, I am trying to just tune out it all out and focus on the next step in front of me, but I wanted to explain to everyone all at once the heart behind any decisions I make with your posts. 

This takes all of me: All of my heart, my vision, my passion, my creativity, my time, my energy, my vulnerability. People probably think this is business and not personal, but maybe not everyone understands that this is personal. Maybe you have noticed that this group is like no other on the internet. A big part of that is because unlike any other curriculum company, you get full access to me. Your words incite change and are heard and valued. That means that you aren't just venting to a community, the words you post don't go to a board of producers, they all come to me: one mom sitting in her PJs hoping today won't be too negative and God will guard her heart from the burden of all this. Sifting through the sea of posts to foster a safe place but also stay centered on what I feel God has laid on my heart.

Then there's the financial side: Gather 'Round costs tens of thousands of dollars a month to produce/create. I pour pretty much everything back into this to create jobs for homeschool moms, to create a better product, and to try to do all this without completely ignoring my family. Jonathan and I have only pulled enough out to pay down some debt and make our home work better for the increasing size of Gather 'Round. But all of our plans involve growth for this business and providing opportunities and blessing others as much as we can. 

I'm not trying to take my burden and make it yours. The reality is that it is mine and mine alone. I can't stop negativity, I can't stop people taking advantage of me. But what I can do is when I see a post that maybe didn't start out negative but turns into a bashing opportunity: I can delete it or stop comments. When I see someone posting a link to another curriculum that people should use... I can remove it or stop comments. When I see someone trying to promote their own product on my community that I have invested everything to build... I can remove it. I reserve the right to maintain and protect positivity, and to keep this group focused on what it is about: Gather 'Round curriculum and lifestyle. 

I know that your posts can have the best of intentions and maybe get taken a different direction in the comments. I don't judge or blame you for that: I just am trying to protect the atmosphere and the purpose and intention of this group. 

If you have a concern or something you don't like, I'm not trying to filter you, I'm saying: if you want Gather 'Round to live a long and healthy life, instead of posting it for everyone to see and become a vent magnet: E-mail me! E-mail me! Seriously, e-mail me! I see them, I read them, and you have all seen changes that have come as a direct result. It is a way to actually incite change instead of just purposeless venting.   

If you are producing your own product... please create your own community to promote it! I'll be the first to tell you it is hard work... but if I did it you can do it! I call it ethical advertising and it is something I am so passionate about: share what you love in a way that is authentic and genuine and not trying to use other people's success as your moment or your place.(Rebecca's business and advertising class coming soon, ha)

For curriculum, you can still post, I'm not changing anything. Post things like: "what recommendations do you have to expand on spelling," or "how does this work with this curriculum?", or "what about switching from this one?", etc. To reiterate: No TGTB, no outside links, just chatter about curriculum in relation to GR. GRH is still the focus. 

All I am asking is please keep it positive, please remember that if you love Gather 'Round and want to see it grow and continue then you are either adding to it or detracting from it with everything you do and say. You get to be a part of creating the atmosphere and facilitating constructive feedback that can bring change. I am setting up my first lifer focus group chat this month and SO excited to talk about what we can grow in or improve. You matter, your voice matters, what you bring to this group matters. ❤️

Love you guys, taking this weekend off a bit to emotionally and physically recover after two launches back to back. But I'm still working behind the scenes on South America and US government, so lots more to come! 

Rebecca“

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Also - she says the curriculum costs “tens of thousands of dollars to produce/create a month”....I can’t see how that’s possible.

Maybe I’m just naive on how much this stuff costs?

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36 minutes ago, Allie said:

Also - she says the curriculum costs “tens of thousands of dollars to produce/create a month”....I can’t see how that’s possible.

Maybe I’m just naive on how much this stuff costs?

???  She must be paying a lot of people a lot of $$ to produce materials. That post reflects that she is overwhelmed.  People switching curriculum/supplementing bc it isn't working for their family should not be unexpected.  

Edited by 8FillTheHeart
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3 hours ago, Allie said:

Also - she says the curriculum costs “tens of thousands of dollars to produce/create a month”....I can’t see how that’s possible.

Maybe I’m just naive on how much this stuff costs?

That's the first thing I noticed too.   If she's really spending that much a month, she needs to sell a HUGE amount of stuff to even break even.  No wonder she's getting more and more desperate sounding.   Or that could be bs.   

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That's such a contrast to the attitude of this board! No one here is encouraged to be highly critical of Peace Hill/Well Trained Mind Press choices, but it's just seen as rude, not forbidden. And it's perfectly fine to say that they aren't working for your child and ask for other suggestions. I've bought Well-Trained Mind stuff because of reviews here. I know that I can trust them because they haven't been heavily moderated. Also, some times the criticism one person makes let me know that the product is likely to be perfect for me.

 

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I accidentally joined the FB page a few weeks ago. I clicked to check it out and when it laid out the rules I was all "peace out" and didn't answer the questions and the next thing you know I was added anyway . . . Honestly, highly censured platforms really grate on me. I want truth. If I am going to make a $$$ purchase, I want to know it's going to work and is worth it. I must be missing something. Does she have multiple writers? I cannot imagine something that she has recently come up with is "enough for all grades K-12."  I cannot stop shaking my head at that statement. How does one person put together some unit studies on a Kaleidoscope of topics and then comfortably assure people all they need to teach there kids EVER is in there. I am not saying they aren't good or worth it . . . I just don't understand how anyone can make those claims. And they are going to come out with 12 grades of math in the blink of an eye? just like that? In a few months? That's a lot of pressure . . . I LOVE curricula...most of us who hang around here probably do. I love finding different things to use and think these are a great supplement even base science/geography/some history for elementary . . . maybe even middle school, but no room to add or coordinate resources because GR is ALL you need? It makes me so uncomfortable. On a recent thread a lot of moms noted that they do separate math and LA and then add GR . . . that is how I see it more functional. How is 1 spelling word on a day considered "spelling work" for the day? Maybe some kids don't need intentional spelling instruction, but I would think they would be in the majority. Now, I think adding that spelling word as a part of the unit study or adding some grammar exercises to a systematic study of grammar is great application. 

The whole thing makes me uncomfortable and I am about as serious about my faith as one can be. But using God as an excuse to censor? Just no. If God is for me who can be against me? If God has spurred her to create GR for His glory, then a link to AAS or an Usborne website is not going to thwart her success. I  understand keeping things positive, but you can positively say something didn't work for you but hey, you might be different! 

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5 hours ago, Allie said:

I try to have grace and an open hand and trust God to defend me and to promote Gather 'Round. But this is God's group for His vision and purpose and something He laid on my heart that I am trying to stewart and bring into fruition.

I have been thinking about her post.  I suspect that most Christians who live their lives according to God's will believe that the work they author has been put on their heart by God.  I know that I felt called to write the curriculum I did. However, I also believe that what God has called me to do as an author and business owner is notrelevant to other people.  My books will either be beneficial to those who use them or they won't be.  Neither outcome is a reflection on what God prompted me to do bc that is personal on whether or not I followed through on the prompting, not my customers' decisions.

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19 hours ago, 8FillTheHeart said:

???  She must be paying a lot of people a lot of $$ to produce materials. That post reflects that she is overwhelmed.  People switching curriculum/supplementing bc it isn't working for their family should not be unexpected.  

Posts asking about supplementing and comparing are still allowed. She just asks people not to link to outside companies, you can still recommend them. That to me is different from Masterbooks, where you can't discuss other curricula at all. 

 

16 hours ago, OKBud said:

"no TGTB" 

Called it!!

yeah...supposedly the rule is there because whenever TGTB is mentioned it turns into a poop show in the comments...no clue if that is true, but having seen how even casual mentions of them have gone in other places it is possible. 

Again, I don't think this is a perfect curriculum, and I do supplement language arts, etc. But  I've posted concerns, pointed out errors, made recommendations for other curricula, and never had my post censored. 

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8 hours ago, Ktgrok said:

Posts asking about supplementing and comparing are still allowed. She just asks people not to link to outside companies, you can still recommend them. That to me is different from Masterbooks, where you can't discuss other curricula at all. 

yeah...supposedly the rule is there because whenever TGTB is mentioned it turns into a poop show in the comments...no clue if that is true, but having seen how even casual mentions of them have gone in other places it is possible. 

Again, I don't think this is a perfect curriculum, and I do supplement language arts, etc. But  I've posted concerns, pointed out errors, made recommendations for other curricula, and never had my post censored. 

Thanks for clariying.  When I read that everything had to relate back to GR, ( just chatter about curriculum in relation to GR. GRH is still the focus)  it sounded like you could only ask those questions if you couched it in terms that still glorified GR instead of asking bc you needed to supplement bc GR had a weakness. 

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On 5/3/2020 at 11:44 AM, 8FillTheHeart said:

Thanks for clariying.  When I read that everything had to relate back to GR, ( just chatter about curriculum in relation to GR. GRH is still the focus)  it sounded like you could only ask those questions if you couched it in terms that still glorified GR instead of asking bc you needed to supplement bc GR had a weakness. 

No, posts about supplementing are definitely allowed, just not with links. Which, meh, whatever. And it happens often that people ask about using it with say, a 5 yr old and people say just wait a year and that's fine, etc. 

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So I saw a weird post by chance yesterday on the GR Facebook group. Someone posted that they recommended GRH in the Hip Homeschool Moms community group and that an admin deleted the post with the note “please do not recommend gather round here due to a copyright issue”....

Does anyone know what this is about? Shortly after it was posted it was deleted.

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Anyone know if the program is young earth or old earth?   I know it's a Christian program but she doesn't address that point specifically in her FAQ.   Earth Science is one of the ones with samples but does not include the first chapter, which is called "The Earth: History, Age and Composition".  

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1 hour ago, Where's Toto? said:

Anyone know if the program is young earth or old earth?   I know it's a Christian program but she doesn't address that point specifically in her FAQ.   Earth Science is one of the ones with samples but does not include the first chapter, which is called "The Earth: History, Age and Composition".  

Rebecca has stated she is Young Earth. 

 

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So I found out about the copyright thing. Apparently Rebecca filed to trademark the name Hip Homeschooling, we’ll after (Many years) the Hip Homeschool group/website had been going. The women behind Hip Homeschooling say rather than her dropping it, they had to spend a ton of money fighting to get it back. I looked up and there’s definitely a trademark application with her name attached. So copyright issue posted about in her group wasn’t about GRH, but the hip homeschool name.

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20 hours ago, Where's Toto? said:

Anyone know if the program is young earth or old earth?   I know it's a Christian program but she doesn't address that point specifically in her FAQ.   Earth Science is one of the ones with samples but does not include the first chapter, which is called "The Earth: History, Age and Composition".  

She is young earth, I have not found anything in the North American Birds or Space unit so far that deal with the age of the earth, but I'd imagine Earth Science would. If we ever use that one we will be using plenty of our own resources on that, for sure. 

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  • 3 weeks later...
2 hours ago, mshanson3121 said:

Well Spooner is at it again. Apparently she's now released a video denouncing Usborne books and the Julia Rothman nature books 🤦

So, polls are open: how long until she produces a book that "fulfills" this glaring gap left by her "convictions"?

I had never heard of Julia Rothman nature books before, so I did an Amazon search.  Almost every title had 4 1/2 to 5 star ratings.  ????  

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5 hours ago, mshanson3121 said:

Well Spooner is at it again. Apparently she's now released a video denouncing Usborne books and the Julia Rothman nature books 🤦

So, polls are open: how long until she produces a book that "fulfills" this glaring gap left by her "convictions"?

Did you watch the video?  What are her issues with Usborne and Julia Rothman?

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38 minutes ago, seemesew said:

I don't know about Usborne but Julia Rotham books are secular that is most likely what she has an issue with. I've heard that from a few homeschoolers now, I think they look great!

That may be her problem with Usborne as well then.  Except for the specific religious themed books, Usborne is all secular too.  Their history encyclopedia even starts with evolution.

 

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  • 3 weeks later...
50 minutes ago, square_25 said:

Seems a bit oversimplified but close to correct. What are people taking exception to? 

 


There is a debate about whether the United States is a Democracy or a Constitutional Republic, but also whether fascism is a far right or far left ideology. 

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From what I recall, fascism is economically left-wing (due to the desire to centralise so much economic activity) and socially right-wing (due to the typical appeals to nostalgia and traditional ways of doing things, as well as strict, harsh enforcement of whatever norms are established). So in a sense, both sides arguing about fascism are correct... about different features of the government type. The thing to note with fascism is that it is never centrist - every component of it is one extreme or the other, which is why fascist leaders avoid democratic norms wherever possible (democratic institutions such as elections require there to be a centre around which to generate loyalty, whose location can never be fully controlled by those in power). That part, the graphic gets exactly right.

A less ambiguously right-wing form of government would be "feudalism", or perhaps "oligarchy" (the former might work better in this context because to my knowledge, no current government could reasonably be deemed "feudal", and this graphic is clearly meant to show socialism and conservatism as being more "average", perhaps even more "reasonable", than the government types at each end).

The USA is a democracy if the comparison is strictly between "democracy" and "dictatorship" (as indicated by the graphic). Its democratic type is "constitutional republic" (as indicated in the Pledge of Allegiance).

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It is, though Miriam-Webster words it as "extreme economic regimentation". It does not always come in the form of direct nationalisation; ordering otherwise-independent businesses to produce the things the government needs would indirectly achieve this also, as was perhaps most prominently shown in the Italian version of fascism. (Making the state a much more important source of income to major companies than anywhere else could be would also work, though it is hard to say whether this was an intentional approach in Nazi Germany). Benito Mussolini defined fascism as: "everything in the state, nothing against the State, nothing outside the state," and "everything" would logically include economic matters.

 

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I think there's always going to be some variation in how fascism and communism present themselves --  but either system, taken to its logical extreme, ends up in a totalitarian disaster. 

I remember reading somewhere that the chief difference is not in how fascist and communist states operate, but in how leaders convince their followers to agree on these systems in the first place. Fascists tend to rally their followers around some sense of nostalgia for a forgotten past, or the sense that their culture is being threatened. Communists tend to rally followers around the idea that the current system is not serving the people equally. That's why it makes sense to see fascism as an extreme extension of right-wing conservatism and communism as an extreme extension of left-wing progressivism. 

 

I find the idea that both sides meet in the same place fascinating. Reminds me of the neo-conservatives who went so far left that they came around the other side.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Whoa--this thread has been informative.   I have been looking around for unit studies to see if they are something we could work in to our day.  I came across GR chatter and thought it might work, but then I recognized the lady who is making it as the same one who made that big TGTB video since GR is linked to the Homeschool On blog.  After making that connection I can see how GR seems to have a similar vibe to TGTB in terms of artwork and beauty of the curriculum...hmmmm.  I'm using TGTB to get my feet wet with LA this year.  I looked up this thread to see how using the GR unit studies was going--thanks for all of the honest feedback.  Any new opinions after more time passing?  Are there any units that are good with 0% YEC material in them?  

What I've learned about unit studies overall is:    I have already made these on my own without knowing what they were called.  I have done quite a few delight directed unit studies around read aloud chapter books with my kids (they are very young).  We add science, geography, culture studies and other "academic" things that seem to connect as well as art and field trips.  I agree with @8FillTheHeart   that you can totally put together unit studies quite easily yourself if you want to do one!  For my own stuff I would have to have a decent math and reading program going on the side.  I like how the themes of unit studies take over the family and create a sense of adventure as everything you're doing has the potential to connect to it somehow.  It's a lot of fun! Does anyone use unit studies full time or even just occasionally to shake up a boring  year or time period?  

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4 hours ago, JoyKM said:

Does anyone use unit studies full time or even just occasionally to shake up a boring  year or time period?  

 

We did them full-time for years!  Sometimes I put them together myself...sometimes I bought stuff...sometimes I used free unit studies that I found online.

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I don't use unit studies to cover all subjects, but I do some unit studies intermixed with our other studies all of the time.  Right now I am in the midst of putting together a Shakespeare study that has zero relation to the history unit study I have already planned.  😉 We are just going to do both.

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