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MamaHill

Can you help with 10th grade plan?

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I need some help with nailing down my 10th grader's plan for the next school year, and would appreciate some ideas or BTDT advice.

I mentioned this particular child in the thread I started for US History help:
My son was homeschooled until 6th grade, attended various private schools for 7-9th, and will be home with me 10-12th.  His 7-9th grade years were a wash academically, although there was much maturing so I consider this success. 😉
He is quite bright, a voracious reader, and likes school only if it's subjects he's interested in.  He detests busy work.  
We both agree that writing needs to be a central focus for him this coming school year, as he's had minimal formal instruction.

The problem is I have too much planned, and I'm not sure what to rearrange:

Latin: Henle I (last half) through MPOA - 1 credit
Lit: Iliad/Odyssey 1st semester and The Aeneid 2nd semester (with me) - 1 credit
Math: Algebra II (local class) - 1 credit
Science: Honors Chemistry (local class) - 1 credit
Logic: Traditional Logic II 1st semester through MPOA - 0.5 credit
English: High School Composition I (1st 4 levels of progym) through MPOA - 1 credit
Theology: History of the Early Church (with me) - 1 credit
US Hx: Notgrass American History Post-Civil War to present - 1 credit

So he's at 7.5 credits.  While that is on the upper end, I do think it's going to be doable for him.  He's really looking forward to more challenging work academically.

I really would like to add Windows to the World.  He has struggled to write for his lit class this year, because he hasn't been taught to write any type of literary analysis.  In fact, he's asked for me to teach him this specifically.

So how I can I reasonably add this in and not burn us out?  Is this a bad idea?  And is WttW traditionally a 0.5 credit even though it's 20 weeks?

The two classes I would push off - Logic and Theology - are the two he's most excited about.  He's a kid that enjoys deep thinking/pondering/talking through concepts.

I've thought through this ad nauseam and need some help and perspective, please!   Thank you! ❤
 

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What about making theology a half credit and doing a semester each of logic and theology? 

What do your literature plans look like? I think adding WttW might be too much, since you already have seven+ credits without it. You might think about saving the Ancient Lit until next year and doing WttW this year instead, or searching for a lit analysis resource specifically for the books you will be using. 

I think it looks like a solid year other than that!

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What credits did he earn in 9th grade? I would guess he earned at least 5 credits, so there's no need to overdo on credits this year, even if you feel there was not a lot of actual learning happening.

And does he have any particular personal interests or future goal interests? Because it's very important to include at least one course, whether academic subject or an Elective, that is of high interest to a student to give them something to look forward to and enjoy in their week -- otherwise it can end up being all drudgery. And who wants to spend hours every week only doing tasks we dislike? 😉 

That said, I find that for planning a year of high school, it's helpful to bear in mind the overall picture of a college prep set of credits, to see if I'm filling in what is needed. So knowing what you already have checked off from 9th grade would be helpful, but here's the overview of what you're likely shooting for:

4 credits = English
3-4 credits = Math (Alg. 1, Geom., Alg. 2, and many colleges want a 4th math with Alg. 2 as the pre-requisite)
3-4 credits = Science, with labs
3-4 credits = Social Studies (many colleges want 1 credit = Amer. Hist., some want 1 credit = World Hist/Geog., a few want 0.5 credit each Econ + Gov't)
2-4 credits = Foreign Language, same language
1 credit = Fine Arts (can be performance or creation of arts, or "appreciation")
4-8 credits = Electives (examples: Logic, Computer, Religious Studies, Health, PE, vocational-technical subjects, personal interest subjects, additional Fine Arts credits, "Academic Electives" (addition credits in first 5 subjects above beyond required amt.), etc.)
22-28+ credits = total --> averages out to 5.5 credits to 7+ credits per year of high school

__________________________

So it looks like this is your line-up for 10th grade:

Latin: Henle I (last half) through MPOA - 1 credit
Lit: Iliad/Odyssey 1st semester and The Aeneid 2nd semester (with me) - 1 credit
Math: Algebra II (local class) - 1 credit
Science: Honors Chemistry (local class) - 1 credit
Logic: Traditional Logic II 1st semester through MPOA - 0.5 credit
English: High School Composition I (1st 4 levels of progym) through MPOA - 1 credit
Theology: History of the Early Church (with me) - 1 credit
US Hx: Notgrass American History Post-Civil War to present - 1 credit


Hmmmm... I see a lower volume of credits and work here, unless you are using advanced/rigorous supplements in addition to what is listed above; This is how I read what you are doing:

1.0 credit = English: Ancient Lit (0.5 credit)* + Composition 1 (MPOA pro-gym) (0.5 credit)**
1.0 credit = Math: Algebra 2 (local class)
1.0 credit = Science: Honors Chemistry (local class)
0.5 credit = Social Studies: American History (Notgrass: post Civil War to present)***
1.0 credit = Latin I (last half of Henle 1)
1.0 credit = Elective: Theology (History of the Early Church)
0.5 credit = Logic II (MPOA Traditional Logic)
6.0 credits = total

* = if the 3 epics is the total sum of the literature being covered, unless that's at a very in-depth college level study, I don't see that being more than a light 0.5 credit of Literature, which is fine for the Literature half of your English credit esp. if you're going to go heavy on writing; most people do as you are planning, which is to spread out 0.5 credit of Lit. over the full school year

** = similarly, unless the Composition you are using is an intensive year-long program all on it's own, usually composition is about half of your English credit, spread out over the full school year; also: I understand about feeling "behind" with no real instruction in writing, but writing, like learning a foreign language, is a very difficult area to speed through, so rather than trying to jam in double the normal levels of writing assignments and writing instruction, I suggest that "less can be more" -- work intensively on a series of shorter assignments to really nail paragraph structure and how to build a supported argument, and then work your way up to -- maybe not until next year -- with longer assignments; remember, you have 3 full years of high school to get solid with writing -- it does NOT all have to happen this year -- and be prepared: it probably won't all happen this year 😉 -- I speak from the experience of teaching homeschool high school co-op classes in Literature and Composition

*** = unless you are heavily supplementing with other History texts and materials to expand the study of this time period, Notgrass History on it's own is worth 1.0 credit once you complete the entire scope of the History; so it sounds like you accomplished 1/2 of the program last year so that was 0.5 credit of American History in 9th grade -- and you will accomplish the other 1/2 of the program in 10th grade, so that will be a 0.5 credit of American History earned in 10th grade... side note: I assume you are NOT also doing the Bible and Literature portions of Notgrass? If so, Notgrass has you count credit for each of those as well, so if you were doing ALL of the materials and assignments portions for the second half of Notgrass History, that would also be 0.5 credit of Bible and 0.5 credit of Literature -- so you might wish to drop those 2 components so you can do your preferred Theology and Literature... which would mean the second half of Notgrass would total 0.5 credit = American History

______________________

re: Windows to the World
Yes, it is a 0.5 credit course. Traditionally 18 weeks = 1 semester/0.5 credit and 36 weeks = 2 semesters/1.0 credit. If you are tight on time, you could either go heavy for a few weeks to fold in those extra 2 weeks of WttW (scheduled for 20 weeks) into your semester, or trim a few small things here and there to reduce the workload to fit the 20 weeks of WttW into 18 weeks.

WttW teaches annotation, how to write a literary analysis essay using your annotations as your supporting examples, and then covers 8-10 of the most frequently used literary devices and how they work in literature, by focusing in-depth on 6 short stories, plus a few poems. There are exercises and writing assignments in the program. If you want WttW to be a full year/1.0 credit course, you can add the Jill Pike syllabus which has you also do all of Teaching the Classics, plus 3 longer works (To Kill a Mockingbird, Jane Eyre, and Hamlet).

 Options for your English credit:
1. stack your 3 ancient Lit epics and just enough Composition to equal 0.5 credit in one semester, and do WttW in one semester for 0.5 credit
2. add some ancient Lit to your 3 epics  throughout the year, and do enough Composition throughout the year to equal 1.0 credit of English, and then also do WttW as a separate, additional 0.5 credit of Academic Elective: English
3. drop the ancient Lit & MPOA Composition and go with WttW + Jill Pike syllabus & Teaching the Classics for your 1.0 credit of English

re: Theology and Logic
If those are his high interests -- do them. Especially if you're going to be doing a lot of heavy focus on writing, then you want what brings joy to balance hard stuff. 😉
 

One final thought:
If wanting to include more practice with analysis and with writing, you might consider doing Movies as Literature as 1.0 credit of Fine Arts: Film Appreciation.


I did not see your other post asking for U.S. History help, so sorry if this is repeat, or irrelevant. Wishing you all the BEST as you plan for 10th grade! Warmest regards, Lori D.

Edited by Lori D.
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It looks like MPOA assigns 2 credits for getting through all of Henle 1. It’s doable in one year but a lot of work! I’d feel comfortable assigning a full credit for the second half if that’s what MPOA is granting. 

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23 minutes ago, lovelearnandlive said:

It looks like MPOA assigns 2 credits for getting through all of Henle 1. It’s doable in one year but a lot of work! I’d feel comfortable assigning a full credit for the second half if that’s what MPOA is granting. 


Duly noted and adjusted above. 😉 

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I'm not at all suggesting you use the materials, but this link might help you think the entire year through in regards to English. It's by Michael Clay Thompson and addresses the principles of a powerful language arts program, and how to structure and schedule that. Again, obviously uses different materials, but the underlying philosophy could be very similar. It's long but that's mostly because there are a lot of pictures and white space, it really doesn't take long to peruse. 

Lori D. is correct about the history being 1/2 credit for the portion you are using. Are you really dedicated to doing American history this year? Because I'm looking at the rest of your schedule - Latin, early church history, Iliad/Odyssey/Aneid - and immediately wondering why you aren't doing Ancient history! It would be such a great fit, and is so easy to scaffold from what you are already doing and the mode you will be in. 

If this were my schedule, I'd combine composition and literature into one credit and change history to one credit of Ancients. Then your history and literature are correlated, with strong ties to two other subjects as well. The composition class is listed as one credit, so I wouldn't try to add an entire credit of literature to that. Rather, I would look at his schedule more holistically (if he does Ancient history). You obviously want to make sure he is doing enough, but, with Ancients, you have more play in what you mentally assign to each credit because 4 of your classes are interrelated. If you study American history, you have less freedom, because an overabundance of hours/work in a different subject will not be relevant. On the other hand, if reading The Iliad in English sends you down a bunny trail of researching whether the battle of Troy was real, that is very relevant to Ancient history. 

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18 hours ago, MamaHill said:

 

I really would like to add Windows to the World.  He has struggled to write for his lit class this year, because he hasn't been taught to write any type of literary analysis.  In fact, he's asked for me to teach him this specifically.

He wants Windows to the World specifically or just some lit analysis? 

I personally would not want to add yet another unrelated curriculum. Definitely not one related to a specific type of writing when I already had a full credit writing program scheduled.  

Won't literary analysis automatically be included in your literature studies? If he is learning about literary analysis in literature and learning/practicing writing skills in composition, well, there ya go! Remember that the composition course will incorporate some lit analysis as well. 

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2 hours ago, katilac said:

I'm not at all suggesting you use the materials, but this link might help you think the entire year through in regards to English. It's by Michael Clay Thompson and addresses the principles of a powerful language arts program, and how to structure and schedule that. Again, obviously uses different materials, but the underlying philosophy could be very similar. It's long but that's mostly because there are a lot of pictures and white space, it really doesn't take long to peruse. 

Thanks for that link! In case anyone wants the "quick start" version, the "meat" of the info is on the charts on p. 30-37, of how he schedules and interweaves the different "strands" of lit. and writing. The upshot of MCT's high school workload, spread over the course of a year:

- multi-page formal/academic, MLA format papers (4 total -- 2 per semester)
- essay-based literature tests
- poetry study
- classic longer works of lit. studied in depth (8 total -- 4 per semester)
- other literature read outside of school, not formally studied (8 total -- 4 per semester)

It is definitely a YMMV situation, depending on the student's level of reading/thinking/writing. 😉 


In case it helps, here's a rough average PER SEMESTER of what I try to accomplish with my high school level homeschool co-op students. My class demographics are wide spread, but tend to skew more towards about 60-70% of the class being either students who are new to formal/academic writing and literary analysis, or who have some LDs/delays that make reading and writing and sometimes reading difficult. (I adapt the length of writing down to just a solid paragraph per assignment for students with learning struggles, and adapt some of the assignments to be longer and more in-depth for advanced students.)

Per Semester:
   literature

- 3 novels
- 2 novellas, or shorter YA books with "meat" for discussion
-1-3 short stories
- 1 unit of poetry (4-8 poems)

   writing, in MLA format, 8 assignments:
- 4 short assignments -- mix of 2-3 reader responses (1 paragraph) and 1-2 essays (1-3 paragraphs)
- 1 revision -- revising of one of the those 4 short assignments
- 2 short/med essays  -- 1.5 - 2 pages
- 1 med/longer essay -- 3-4 pages

Edited by Lori D.
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2 hours ago, katilac said:

I'm not at all suggesting you use the materials, but this link might help you think the entire year through in regards to English. It's by Michael Clay Thompson and addresses the principles of a powerful language arts program, and how to structure and schedule that. Again, obviously uses different materials, but the underlying philosophy could be very similar. It's long but that's mostly because there are a lot of pictures and white space, it really doesn't take long to peruse. 

Lori D. is correct about the history being 1/2 credit for the portion you are using. Are you really dedicated to doing American history this year? Because I'm looking at the rest of your schedule - Latin, early church history, Iliad/Odyssey/Aneid - and immediately wondering why you aren't doing Ancient history! It would be such a great fit, and is so easy to scaffold from what you are already doing and the mode you will be in. 

If this were my schedule, I'd combine composition and literature into one credit and change history to one credit of Ancients. Then your history and literature are correlated, with strong ties to two other subjects as well. The composition class is listed as one credit, so I wouldn't try to add an entire credit of literature to that. Rather, I would look at his schedule more holistically (if he does Ancient history). You obviously want to make sure he is doing enough, but, with Ancients, you have more play in what you mentally assign to each credit because 4 of your classes are interrelated. If you study American history, you have less freedom, because an overabundance of hours/work in a different subject will not be relevant. On the other hand, if reading The Iliad in English sends you down a bunny trail of researching whether the battle of Troy was real, that is very relevant to Ancient history. 

The composition class is pretty intense so I think it is a full credit unto itself.  Could she add in some Ancient Greek and Roman history and count the combo of the history and the epics as a social studies credit?  I agree American history is probably better in a different year.

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2 hours ago, Mom2mthj said:

The composition class is pretty intense so I think it is a full credit unto itself.  Could she add in some Ancient Greek and Roman history and count the combo of the history and the epics as a social studies credit?  I agree American history is probably better in a different year.

Or, go the other direction  😉 and save the ancient Lit for another year, when also doing ancient History, and instead:

- finish the American History in 10th grade, since they're already 1/2 way through that study from 9th grade and DS loves American History

- and use whatever she wants for the Lit. & Writing for the 10th grade English credit -- perhaps WttW for 0.5 credit since she is interested in that, and for the other 0.5 credit of English, perhaps part of the MP Composition + some of the Notgrass literature (since she's planning on using the History portion of it in 10th)... or some American Lit. (to go with the history)... or some works that are of high interest to the student, and that are mom's list of books to accomplish before the end of high school...

Edited by Lori D.
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Oh goodness.  THANK YOU all so much!

Honestly, I'm a bit overwhelmed at the response.  This is my first attempt at trying to understand homeschool high school since he was in private school for 9th grade.  I still am researching like a crazy woman every evening trying to wrap my brain around credits, etc.

Since I didn't have any control over his 9th grade credits, I feel like I'm having to make up for lost time a little bit.

For his 9th grade year, I understand from his school that these are his credits:
-- American History I (through Reconstruction) - 1 credit
-- Geometry - 1 credit
-- Biology - 1 credit
-- English I - 1 credit
-- Theology - 1 credit
-- Musical Theater - 0.5 credit

Then with me at home for 9th grade:
-- Traditional Logic I via MPOA - 0.5 credit
-- Henle I (Units 1-5) - 1 credit

So he will have 6.0 credits for 9th grade.

---------------

Clearly, I don't know exactly what I'm going here since this is my first go with high school.  I chose to do Amer. Hx II since he just finished I.  Plus he loves American History and is super interested in government and politics.

Also, if he did Ancients, would that count as a year of World History?  I'm not clear on what counts for a year of World History in general...  Do we just choose a time period and off we go?

I'm going to spend a bit of time going through all of the responses carefully, and I'll be back with questions I'm sure. 😉

Thank you again for all of your time and wisdom!

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41 minutes ago, MamaHill said:

... For his 9th grade year, I understand from his school that these are his credits:
-- American History I (through Reconstruction) - 1 credit
-- Geometry - 1 credit
-- Biology - 1 credit
-- English I - 1 credit
-- Theology - 1 credit
-- Musical Theater - 0.5 credit

Then with me at home for 9th grade:
-- Traditional Logic I via MPOA - 0.5 credit
-- Henle I (Units 1-5) - 1 credit

So he will have 6.0 credits for 9th grade.

---------------

Clearly, I don't know exactly what I'm going here since this is my first go with high school.  I chose to do Amer. Hx II since he just finished I.  Plus he loves American History and is super interested in government and politics.

Also, if he did Ancients, would that count as a year of World History?  I'm not clear on what counts for a year of World History in general...  Do we just choose a time period and off we go?


I think you're doing great, esp. since you were rather thrown into the midst of things for planning 10th grade. 😄 

Yes, Ancient History counts as World History. Yes, you could choose any time period of interest, as long as you are studying other parts of the world (i.e., not a focus on just a single nation).

I personally absolutely would run with your idea of finishing American History because your DS loves it and is looking forward to it, and that will be one less "new" thing to deal with, along with everything else being new of switching from a school to homeschool during high school. Maybe consider adding in 0.5 credit worth of 20th century World history along with finishing up your American History (which would be covering the end of the 19th century and all of the 20th century of the U.S.), to make a full credit of History for 10th grade... JMO! 😄 


Actually, that looks like 7.0 credits for 9th grade 😉 :
1.0 credit = English
1.0 credit = Math: Geometry
1.0 credit = Science: Biology
1.0 credit = Social Studies: American History (Colonial to Reconstruction)
1.0 credit = For. Lang.: Latin
0.5 credit = Fine Arts: Musical Theater
1.0 credit = Elective: Theology
0.5 credit = Elective: Logic (Traditional Logic I)
7.0 credits = total

And 6.0 credits tentatively planned so far for 10th grade:
1.0 credit = English**
1.0 credit = Math: Algebra 2 (local class)
1.0 credit = Science: Honors Chemistry (local class)
0.5 credit = Social Studies: American History (Reconstruction to present)
1.0 credit = For. Lang: Latin I (last half of Henle 1)
1.0 credit = Elective: Theology (History of the Early Church)
0.5 credit = Elective: Logic II (MPOA Traditional Logic)
6.0 credits = total

** = still deciding what to study and what to use, which may change total credit count

Edited by Lori D.
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You listed his American History II as 0.5 credits - should I figure out how to make this a full credit?  

I'm not sure how to do that, but I can research.

I counted his Composition class as a full credit, because that's what MPOA recommended.  But yes, I realize this doesn't include literature of any type.

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4 hours ago, katilac said:

He wants Windows to the World specifically or just some lit analysis? 

I personally would not want to add yet another unrelated curriculum. Definitely not one related to a specific type of writing when I already had a full credit writing program scheduled.  

Won't literary analysis automatically be included in your literature studies? If he is learning about literary analysis in literature and learning/practicing writing skills in composition, well, there ya go! Remember that the composition course will incorporate some lit analysis as well. 

No, he doesn't want WttW specifically.  One issue is that I'm not a strong writer and need a lot of hand-holding with teaching that to my children.  From reading here, it looked like this would be a good help.

I bought WttW and have read through at least the first half of it.  It's marvelous!  Maybe *I* should go through the whole course to teach myself and then use that in literature studies with him.  Yes, I think you're right that the literature guides will have analysis.  We're using the guides from Memoria Press, and in the younger grades they are full of analysis help.  I can't speak to the upper school guides since I haven't used them yet.  

Thanks for helping me think through this portion of it!

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53 minutes ago, MamaHill said:

You listed his American History II as 0.5 credits - should I figure out how to make this a full credit?  ...

Notgrass American History, when doing the ALL of the history portion, is 1.0 credit . Since you were planning on doing just the last 1/2 of the History program, then it would only be 0.5 credit of History.

One question I have -- why are you going with Notgrass, if you are only using the History portion (not the Lit. or Bible portion), and only using 1/2 of the Notgrass History program at that? If only doing a 1/2, why not go with the Bob Jones text that DS was enjoying and use that to finish out the American History?? Just curious! 😉 

There is no right or wrong or "preferred" option for your Social Studies. Go with what works best for you and for DS. 😉

Options:
1. Just go with 0.5 credit of American History in 10th grade. (resulting in a total of 1.5 credits of Social Studies: American History for 9th +10th)
2. Add materials to the second half of Notgrass to make it a full 1.0 credit of Amer. Hist. in 10th. (for a 9th + 10th total of 2.0 credits of Social Studies)
3. Use the Bob Jones textbook materials rather than Notgrass, and do option 1 or 2
4. Add 0.5 credit of Modern World History to go along with your 0.5 credit of American History, for a total of 1.0 credit of Social Studies in 10th grade
5. Go to some other History period of interest to your family -- for example, if wanting to do the Ancient epics for your Literature, then go with 1.0 credit of Ancient World History.
 

53 minutes ago, MamaHill said:

...I counted his Composition class as a full credit, because that's what MPOA recommended.  But yes, I realize this doesn't include literature of any type.

Sorry, I was unfamiliar with MPOA's Composition. If they list it as 1.0 credit, then yes, count it as  that.

It is perfectly fine to focus only on Composition for 1.0 credit of English for one year -- although most students find that tedious; reading and discussing Literature helps to add interest to the English credit, AND Literature gives you something to *write about* for the Composition portion of the credit.

So again, you have options if you use MPOA Composition:
1. Just go with 1/2 of MPOA Composition for 0.5 credit + enough Literature for 0.5 credit, for 1.0 credit English in 10th.
2. Or, do all of MPOA Composition for 1.0 credit and no literature, for 1.0 credit of English in 10th.
3. Or, do all of MPOA Composition for 1.0 credit + enough Literature for 0.5 credit, for 1.5 credit English in 10th.
4. Or, do all of MPOA Composition for 1.0 credit + enough Literature for 1.0 credit, for 2.0 credits English in 10th.

And you have options if you DON'T use MPOA Composition:
5. Instead use WttW for 0.5 credit of English (Lit. + Writing), OR, add the Jill Pike syllabus for 1.0 credit of English (Lit. & Writing)
6. Instead, go with an online course to focus on the writing (and do whatever lit. you & DS want), for 1.0 credit of English (Lit. & Writing)

Finally, if you do want to do Literature as part of your English credit next year (not just 1.0 credit of Composition), then you have more options:
1. match up your Lit. and History --> so do American Lit., if doing American Lit.
2. match up your Lit. and History --> so do Ancient epics, if doing Ancient World History
3. don't match up your Lit. and History --> use a Literature program that works well for you and for DS
4. don't match up your Lit. and History --> go with individual works + study guides
5. don't match up your Lit. and History --> go with an online Literature course

Edited by Lori D.
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1 hour ago, MamaHill said:

You listed his American History II as 0.5 credits - should I figure out how to make this a full credit?  

Don't have resources off the top of my head for specifically helping with fleshing out American History II into a full credit, but below I'm copy/pasting from my response in a past post as a general help for figuring out what makes a credit. Hope that helps! Warmest regards, Lori D.
___________________

For planning purposes, very roughly, 1.0 credit in high school very roughly comes out to either:
- competition of a high school level textbook (i.e., usually things like Science or Math)
- or very roughly, an average of 150 hours of student working

Especially if you go "DIY" rather than outsourcing, it is very easy to go way overboard and do much more than what is reasonable for 1.0 credit -- which is a real disservice to a student if you have them put in the work for 1.5 - 2.0 credits, but you only award 1.0 credit on the transcript.

I am reprinting my post out of this past thread "Daily workload", to give you the background on why 150 hours is the average. You might also find that whole thread helpful for getting a feel for what daily high school work might look like, and adapt for your family.

. . . . . .   minimum .average . maximum
1.00 credit =  120 . . . 150 . . . 180  hours
0.75 credit =   90 . . . 110 . . . 135  hours
0.66 credit =   80 . . . 100 . .  120  hours
0.50 credit =   60 . . .  75 . .. . 90  hours
0.33 credit =   40 . . .  50 .  . . 60  hours
0.25 credit =   30 . . .. 35 .. . . 45  hours

The 120 hour minimum comes from the Carnegie Credit and refers to the minimum teacher/classroom contact hours for 1 credit (it is usually understood that there will ALSO be additional work done *outside of class* that counts towards the credit). 

The 180 hour maximum comes from public schools which typically are required to meet for 180 days per year -- so 1 hour/day x 5 days/week x 36 weeks/school year = 180 hours. However, most public school classes actually meet for 40-50 minutes per day, BUT, regular homework is assumed to fill up that shorter class time back up to 1 full hour of time. In general, if you shoot for the average, and you fill out 135 to 165 hours for most of your classes, then the credits on your transcript come out to be roughly equivalent. But, of course, there are lots of exceptions to that (:D -- such as:

- English and Science classes usually take much closer to 180 hours (or a bit over), due to the extra time needed for reading/writing, and for labs

- some required classes will inevitably end up more as "box checking" classes if the student has a low interest in them -- for example Economics, Government, PE, or Health -- and often, once you complete the program, you find your hours often fall much closer to 120 hours (or 60 hours if just a 1 semester/0.5 credit course)

- dual enrollment courses sometimes cover more advanced material, but in a shorter period of time, so you'll be lighter on the hours for completion, but heavier on the material learned, which balances out

- if a student is completing a program in far less than the 1 year (at the rate of 1 hour/day 4-5 days/week) then you might consider that the program is too light for this student and try switching to material that is more meaty and challenging for the student

- if you have a math struggler, you may need to take much longer than 180 hours to complete the program; if a student needs 2 school years to get through Algebra 1, then it is okay to call that 2 credits (the student put in the time, for sure!), and label it Algebra 1: part 1 and Algebra 1: part 2, or Algebra 1a and Algebra 1b, other designation to honor the student's work, but to accurately describe what content was covered

- sometimes you just have to decide whether or not to count all of the hours spent on reading the Literature for an English credit, or all of the practice hours for instrument practice for a Music credit -- and count some of the hours of repetitive work as homework

Planning for roughly 5 hours a week is a good amount of time for a 1.0 credit course. That gives you leeway to cut some material or some assignments if you find you are constantly bumping up against your 5 hour/week limit. And it also gives you leeway if you want/need to drop to just working 4 hours/week from time to time -- like, if you need some sick days, or a special event crops up, or your student absolutely hates a resource and you can't find a substitute -- you can drop or streamline, and you're still well-covered in hours.

Edited by Lori D.
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Hi,

It is fairly easy to enrich a text -- add a lecture series (The Great Courses), PBS documentaries (Ken Burns or American Experience), other texts (Zinn), trade books (Why We Can't Wait), other curricula (Critical Thinking in US History), etc.  My problem has always been in limiting the credit.  However, another option would be to do US Govt. first semester to coincide with the election (you said he was interested in politics) and finish the history credit in a straightforward way second semester.  : )  Options are good, right?

--LL

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On 5/13/2020 at 3:35 PM, Mom2mthj said:

The composition class is pretty intense so I think it is a full credit unto itself.  Could she add in some Ancient Greek and Roman history and count the combo of the history and the epics as a social studies credit?  I agree American history is probably better in a different year.

 

I have a possibly unreasonable prejudice against the term 'social studies' so I would still call it history. Plus, ancient history by its nature calls for reading some myths and legends. You're doing more typical factual readings as well, but not all of the ancients were as considerate as Hammurabi to leave us writings 😃

I don't disagree that the composition class is worthy of a credit, but I myself prefered to have an English class listed every single year. Because he would have four classes so closely related and basically bleeding into each other, I would keep a total workload in mind but simplify life by not going, hmm, does this hour we spent reading about church architecture 'go with' history of the early church or ancient history? Does comparing details of a myth 'go with' ancient history or English? It doesn't matter, just do enough quality work, and you can sort it out every nine weeks or even at the midyear mark. His outside course may be labeled "composition" but she can certainly call it English if there's reading and writing across the curriculum. 

If he's college bound, I do think that admissions offices prefer to see English vs composition, as composition is expected to be part of that entire credit. They are not accustomed to seeing challenging composition courses. Now, I don't think it's something that's going to keep anyone out of college by any means, it's just something that might need to be explained if you aim for a more selective college or program, and I really wanted to keep the admissions process simple and smooth. Also, having correlated English and history courses on their transcripts made my inner OCD very happy. 

OP, I quote you below but answering here bc the boards are being weird. If he's super interested in government and politics, an election year is certainly a great time to knock out at least some of a civics class! I require 4 years of history and colleges often require a civics class, so yep, my kids took history and civics at the same time, lol. It really wasn't onerous, bc we did do it in an election year and a ton of it was conventions, debates, etc, as a family and discussing. It's been years but at the time we liked some of the games at iCivics for learning the amendments and so on. We also didn't have a hard deadline for finishing; I kept a rough record of various things we read, did, watched, explored, and at some point went, yep, y'all have now fulfilled your Civics and Free Enterprise credit. 

You can of course have American history and civics build on each other as well, that definitely works, but the synergy you could have with ancient history, ancient literature, Latin, and early church history is just a thing of beauty that I would not be able to resist 😂

On 5/13/2020 at 6:04 PM, MamaHill said:

Plus he loves American History and is super interested in government and politics.

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14 hours ago, katilac said:

... I have a possibly unreasonable prejudice against the term 'social studies' ...

How about going with what colleges tend to go with:

Social Sciences (people (social)-based studies of Psychology, Sociology, History, (Cultural) Geography, Government, etc.) 

as opposed to the Natural Sciences (studies of natural processes such as biology, chemistry, physics, etc.)

Just a thought! 😄 

Edited by Lori D.

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18 hours ago, katilac said:

I don't disagree that the composition class is worthy of a credit, but I myself prefered to have an English class listed every single year. Because he would have four classes so closely related and basically bleeding into each other, I would keep a total workload in mind but simplify life by not going, hmm, does this hour we spent reading about church architecture 'go with' history of the early church or ancient history? Does comparing details of a myth 'go with' ancient history or English? It doesn't matter, just do enough quality work, and you can sort it out every nine weeks or even at the midyear mark. His outside course may be labeled "composition" but she can certainly call it English if there's reading and writing across the curriculum. 

If he's college bound, I do think that admissions offices prefer to see English vs composition, as composition is expected to be part of that entire credit. They are not accustomed to seeing challenging composition courses. Now, I don't think it's something that's going to keep anyone out of college by any means, it's just something that might need to be explained if you aim for a more selective college or program, and I really wanted to keep the admissions process simple and smooth. Also, having correlated English and history courses on their transcripts made my inner OCD very happy. 

OP, I quote you below but answering here bc the boards are being weird. If he's super interested in government and politics, an election year is certainly a great time to knock out at least some of a civics class! I require 4 years of history and colleges often require a civics class, so yep, my kids took history and civics at the same time, lol. It really wasn't onerous, bc we did do it in an election year and a ton of it was conventions, debates, etc, as a family and discussing. It's been years but at the time we liked some of the games at iCivics for learning the amendments and so on. We also didn't have a hard deadline for finishing; I kept a rough record of various things we read, did, watched, explored, and at some point went, yep, y'all have now fulfilled your Civics and Free Enterprise credit. 

You can of course have American history and civics build on each other as well, that definitely works, but the synergy you could have with ancient history, ancient literature, Latin, and early church history is just a thing of beauty that I would not be able to resist 😂

 

This portion about the English credit was so important for me to read.  Between the other responses on the thread (thank you all!) and these statements, I finally understand that he needs to have what's called an 'English 2' credit - so this composition course and then literature.

Going through this scenario yet another time (I'm starting to get decision fatigue 😟), this is my current plan:

1.0 credit = English - MPOA's HS Composition Class plus the Memoria Press guides for Iliad/Odyssey/Aeneid
1.0 credit = Math - Algebra 2 (local class)
1.0 credit = Science - Honors Chemistry (local class)
1.0 credit = Foreign Language - Latin II (Last half of Henle I through MPOA)
1.0 credit = Elective: Theology - History of the Early Church (home)
0.5 credit = Elective: Logic II (MPOA Traditional Logic)
0.5 credit = American Government (using BJU I think in the fall)
0.5 credit = Economics (either BJU or a local class in the spring)

Total credits = 6.5

Since his 9th grade class from the private school will be listed as American History I and worth a full credit, I am going to do American History II for a full credit his 11th grade year.  From what I understand, it will make his transcript look more cohesive and not raise any flags.

The only other outstanding decision is WttW.  Since he's sitting at 6.5 credits, I do feel like we could add it in without being nuts.

Does this credit plan look better?  It still feels like such a work in progress...

Thank you all again for your time and help!
 

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On 5/13/2020 at 8:22 PM, Lori D. said:

It is perfectly fine to focus only on Composition for 1.0 credit of English for one year -- although most students find that tedious; reading and discussing Literature helps to add interest to the English credit, AND Literature gives you something to *write about* for the Composition portion of the credit.

So again, you have options if you use MPOA Composition:
1. Just go with 1/2 of MPOA Composition for 0.5 credit + enough Literature for 0.5 credit, for 1.0 credit English in 10th.
2. Or, do all of MPOA Composition for 1.0 credit and no literature, for 1.0 credit of English in 10th.
3. Or, do all of MPOA Composition for 1.0 credit + enough Literature for 0.5 credit, for 1.5 credit English in 10th.
4. Or, do all of MPOA Composition for 1.0 credit + enough Literature for 1.0 credit, for 2.0 credits English in 10th.

And you have options if you DON'T use MPOA Composition:
5. Instead use WttW for 0.5 credit of English (Lit. + Writing), OR, add the Jill Pike syllabus for 1.0 credit of English (Lit. & Writing)
6. Instead, go with an online course to focus on the writing (and do whatever lit. you & DS want), for 1.0 credit of English (Lit. & Writing)

Finally, if you do want to do Literature as part of your English credit next year (not just 1.0 credit of Composition), then you have more options:
1. match up your Lit. and History --> so do American Lit., if doing American Lit.
2. match up your Lit. and History --> so do Ancient epics, if doing Ancient World History
3. don't match up your Lit. and History --> use a Literature program that works well for you and for DS
4. don't match up your Lit. and History --> go with individual works + study guides
5. don't match up your Lit. and History --> go with an online Literature course

 

So the English credit...

He's still going to do the High School Composition through MPOA, which they call a credit.  

I've emailed them to see if the Memoria Press Guides of Iliad/Odyssey/Aeneid are worthy of a credit or half a credit, but have yet to hear.

You have such a gift for breaking it down to the various options.  I really appreciate that!! 

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59 minutes ago, MamaHill said:

...So the English credit:
He's still going to do the High School Composition through MPOA, which they call a credit.  
I've emailed them to see if the Memoria Press Guides of Iliad/Odyssey/Aeneid are worthy of a credit or half a credit, but have yet to hear...


JMO: Honestly, I think that no matter what MP says, counting just 3 ancient epics as 1 credit of Literature on the transcript will look like credit inflation to colleges. Unless it is a college-level Literature course. Which, although they may be more be going into more depth than other classical programs, MP is not college level. Think of it this way: will your DS really be spending 150-180 hours (average-to-maximum hours for 1 credit) in reading / discussing / analyzing / watching lecture videos about just those 3 works??

Again, just me -- I'd suggest just doing The Iliad & The Odyssey, plus a few non-ancient Greek works that would be of high interest** to your DS, and call that 0.5 credit of Literature. The year we did Ancient lit. for the English credit, we were also doing additional non-ancient literature towards an Academic Elective of Literature -- and we were all grateful for the break -- the ancient Greeks are great, but a whole year of just that and nothing else can be pretty exhausting.

** = perhaps consider some short stories and poetry for practice of literary analysis (see the thread "Figuratively Speaking paired with short stories") ; or a few YA novels that are meaty for discussion, to practice literary analysis; or consider doing an abridged/retelling of the Aeneid along with the full translations of The Iliad and The Odyssey, and add a modern epic -- Watership Down -- that has some overlapping themes and ideas with The Aeneid; that would give you & DS additional literary elements to be looking for, and "big ideas" for discussing

Edited by Lori D.

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I would simplify.

- ditch the Ancients and the MP comp, do WttW with the Jill Pike syllabus. 1 English credit. 

- enrich the US History to make it a full credit or add .5 credit of Government for 1 full credit of Social Science. 

-save the epics to do with other Ancient Lit when you do Ancient History.

So he'd have English, History, Chemistry , Latin, Alg 2 - the five cores 1 credit each.

Theology and Logic, 1.5 credits of electives. 

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On 5/13/2020 at 9:08 PM, LLucy said:

Hi,

It is fairly easy to enrich a text -- add a lecture series (The Great Courses), PBS documentaries (Ken Burns or American Experience), other texts (Zinn), trade books (Why We Can't Wait), other curricula (Critical Thinking in US History), etc.  My problem has always been in limiting the credit.  However, another option would be to do US Govt. first semester to coincide with the election (you said he was interested in politics) and finish the history credit in a straightforward way second semester.  : )  Options are good, right?

--LL

Yes, this. If he enjoys American history and politics, a presidential election year is prime for Government studies! 

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12 hours ago, Lori D. said:


JMO: Honestly, I think that no matter what MP says, counting just 3 ancient epics as 1 credit of Literature on the transcript will look like credit inflation to colleges. Unless it is a college-level Literature course. Which, although they may be more be going into more depth than other classical programs, MP is not college level. Think of it this way: will your DS really be spending 150-180 hours (average-to-maximum hours for 1 credit) in reading / discussing / analyzing / watching lecture videos about just those 3 works??

 

That is the nitty-gritty and very helpful to read and process.  Thank you for that!

The answer is a resounding no, those three texts and their guides will NOT equal that amount of work.

( I still have so much to learn about the homeschooling high school process and the thought process behind course and credit decisions.  Sigh.  I feel like I'm spinning my wheels.)

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11 hours ago, ScoutTN said:

I would simplify.

- ditch the Ancients and the MP comp, do WttW with the Jill Pike syllabus. 1 English credit. 

- enrich the US History to make it a full credit or add .5 credit of Government for 1 full credit of Social Science. 

-save the epics to do with other Ancient Lit when you do Ancient History.

So he'd have English, History, Chemistry , Latin, Alg 2 - the five cores 1 credit each.

Theology and Logic, 1.5 credits of electives. 

 

This is beautifully simple.  I'm going to take a break from researching and pondering and mull over this through the weekend.

Thank you!

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If he needs writing instruction and you need hand-holding to teach it, I think you would both enjoy WttW. It is solid, clear and uses a variety of good lit.  

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