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Math- just using a bunch of resources


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On 3/3/2021 at 8:04 AM, Not_a_Number said:

We use shapes! We fill in squares and triangles and pentagons and occasionally circles (they are much bigger than 0s, or they wouldn't work.) 

 

22 hours ago, Not_a_Number said:

I do wonder if bar models are actually useful or not. I mean, I’m absolutely sure they can help kids solve things, but I wonder if it’s the best model for long-term retention of the strategies. 

We use shapes for variables too!  We also use part whole circles which I think are quite similar to bar models. The part whole circles really help DD visualize whether to add or subtract when trying to solve an equation. It also really helped her understand using counting up as a subtraction strategy. 
 

 

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45 minutes ago, Not_a_Number said:

I do wonder if bar models are actually useful or not. I mean, I’m absolutely sure they can help kids solve things, but I wonder if it’s the best model for long-term retention of the strategies. 

Perhaps they’re more intuitive for spatial / geometric thinkers? I found them clunky & over-complicated. 

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12 hours ago, Not_a_Number said:

What micro-skills did they address? I’m now curious!

An example for me is how it’s often useful when trying to solve a problem to start with a simpler problem of the same type. They will lead the student through that build up from simpler to more complex one question at a time.  There is a good example in the sequence chapter in 5C, on Fibonacci sequences. 
They also frequently make it well worthwhile to simplify problems, so that students should look for those opportunities, and methods are demonstrated by the Beasts. 
The first few questions in a section are often exploring the properties of a concept.  I like all of these things. 

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15 minutes ago, Eilonwy said:

An example for me is how it’s often useful when trying to solve a problem to start with a simpler problem of the same type. They will lead the student through that build up from simpler to more complex one question at a time.  There is a good example in the sequence chapter in 5C, on Fibonacci sequences. 
They also frequently make it well worthwhile to simplify problems, so that students should look for those opportunities, and methods are demonstrated by the Beasts. 
The first few questions in a section are often exploring the properties of a concept.  I like all of these things. 

Aah, makes sense! Those are, indeed, good skills. I don't think about them enough, since they are intuitive to me, but it's a great idea to address those.

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We pieced together lots of stuff for math over time, and adapted a lot of resources. I did not want to reinvent the wheel. (I was already reinventing various wheels for language arts, history, and science half the time.)

Beast Academy worked very well for us. We needed almost no supplementation or extra problems, and frequently could skip some problems as DD didn’t need the level of repetition in the books. BA2 wasn’t out at the time, and neither was the online version. She did BA 3-5, then skipped Prealgebra and had no significant problems with the AOPS Intro to Algebra material. 

There are kids who do quite well with the program. DD is extra mathy, really loves understanding how math works, and thrived with BA. 

 

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1 minute ago, Jackie said:

Beast Academy worked very well for us. We needed almost no supplementation or extra problems, and frequently could skip some problems as DD didn’t need the level of repetition in the books. BA2 wasn’t out at the time, and neither was the online version. She did BA 3-5, then skipped Prealgebra and had no significant problems with the AOPS Intro to Algebra material. 

There are kids who do quite well with the program. DD is extra mathy, really loves understanding how math works, and thrived with BA. 

I'm curious: did BA introduce her to concepts she wasn't comfortable with yet? 

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6 minutes ago, Not_a_Number said:

I'm curious: did BA introduce her to concepts she wasn't comfortable with yet? 

Yes.

Her preferred math stuff is always input, not output. So, she reads mathy books and watches mathy videos, but she doesn’t actually work a math problem that isn’t assigned. So, there were lots of concepts in BA that she was familiar with but had never worked a single problem that used the concept before getting to it in the workbook. She often got stuck on problems (and was still having meltdowns when she got stuck back then, so I remember it well!), but once she figured it out, she would immediately learn from it and zoom on ahead. 

She does clearly learn from the books and videos. We hit one chapter in BA5 that she declared boring because there was nothing new. She had never worked a single problem within the topic before, and she admitted that. I told her if she could work the starred and challenge problems, I’d move her on, and she completed them in about 90 minutes and was done. She is not a fast worker, but apparently she knew enough probability from somewhere to make that chapter too easy. This was not the case at any point in level 3 or 4, but showed up a few times in level 5.

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Just now, Jackie said:

Yes.

Her preferred math stuff is always input, not output. So, she reads mathy books and watches mathy videos, but she doesn’t actually work a math problem that isn’t assigned. So, there were lots of concepts in BA that she was familiar with but had never worked a single problem that used the concept before getting to it in the workbook. She often got stuck on problems (and was still having meltdowns when she got stuck back then, so I remember it well!), but once she figured it out, she would immediately learn from it and zoom on ahead. 

Cool! That's good to hear that it can work as written for a kid. 

Do you remember which concepts were new, or is that too long ago? When I flipped through it, I remember feeling that there wasn't much DD8 hasn't seen before, but we didn't actually use the program. 

 

Just now, Jackie said:

She does clearly learn from the books and videos. We hit one chapter in BA5 that she declared boring because there was nothing new. She had never worked a single problem within the topic before, and she admitted that. I told her if she could work the starred and challenge problems, I’d move her on, and she completed them in about 90 minutes and was done. She is not a fast worker, but apparently she knew enough probability from somewhere to make that chapter too easy. This was not the case at any point in level 3 or 4, but showed up a few times in level 5.

Makes sense. 

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23 minutes ago, Not_a_Number said:

Cool! That's good to hear that it can work as written for a kid. 

Do you remember which concepts were new, or is that too long ago? When I flipped through it, I remember feeling that there wasn't much DD8 hasn't seen before, but we didn't actually use the program. 

Mostly, it’s been too long. I do know it was the first time she had ever run into a written version of multidigit multiplication or division. She’d worked those problems in her head for years and freaked out about it on paper for whatever reason. Looking at the topics just now, I remember there was stuff in the logic chapter she hadn’t yet run into. The estimation chapter was new and drove her crazy. Pieces of all the shapes chapters were new to her. But for the most part, it was rarely the concepts themselves that were new; the new part was having to actually work problems instead of passively taking in information.

Also, it must have been statistics she was able to breeze through, as it fits better with my memory of timing.

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Just now, Jackie said:

Mostly, it’s been too long. I do know it was the first time she had ever run into a written version of multidigit multiplication or division. She’d worked those problems in her head for years and freaked out about it on paper for whatever reason. Looking at the topics just now, I remember there was stuff in the logic chapter she hadn’t yet run into. The estimation chapter was new and drove her crazy. Pieces of all the shapes chapters were new to her. But for the most part, it was rarely the concepts themselves that were new; the new part was having to actually work problems instead of passively taking in information.

Also, it must have been statistics she was able to breeze through, as it fits better with my memory of timing.

That makes a lot of sense to me. I think it would be a fabulous program for a mathy kid who had already internalized the concepts in her head but needed practice that didn't make her want to stab herself due to how boring it was!

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On 3/2/2021 at 3:45 PM, Shoes+Ships+SealingWax said:

Didax Pentominoes

Yes, Didax has great stuff!! https://www.didax.com/advanced-pattern-block-book-gr-5-8.html  

Also he might be ready for this simpler level of math mysteries https://www.amazon.com/More-Math-Mysteries-Kids-Resist/dp/1338257307/ref=sr_1_3?dchild=1&keywords=math+mysteries&qid=1614913790&sr=8-3  This one is quite fun https://www.amazon.com/Fabulous-Math-Mysteries-Resist-Grades/dp/0439175402/ref=pd_bxgy_2/147-9355633-7062835?_encoding=UTF8&pd_rd_i=0439175402&pd_rd_r=faec6470-7a6b-4c70-8227-5d5b3afe1980&pd_rd_w=RVGsa&pd_rd_wg=OSu7R&pf_rd_p=f325d01c-4658-4593-be83-3e12ca663f0e&pf_rd_r=R58CRCW4RP81S8X6TZE0&psc=1&refRID=R58CRCW4RP81S8X6TZE0

My ds has SLD math while also having some math strengths, so I try to teach him with an eclectic mix. I spend a lot of time in education stores looking at books, looking for just the right thing to intrigue him. Or go through the publishers (Didax, Carson Dellosa, Scholastic, etc.). 

I just made a huge request from the library for books on math art. There are books that look for math in art and there are books that make art with math. I was sort of looking for the latter. 

Your student might also enjoy living math or picture books about math. I just went through the Scholastic teacher site, filtering for 5th grade math, and I was surprised at the number of newer picture books about math I hadn't seen. I didn't realize Greg Tang has some picture books about math, and they had others listed like https://www.amazon.com/Millions-Billions-Trillions-Understanding-Numbers/dp/0823430499/ref=sr_1_1?crid=M7WSBVPWS3F&dchild=1&keywords=millions+billions+and+trillions&qid=1614914223&s=books&sprefix=millions+and+billions+%2Cstripbooks%2C197&sr=1-1  Maybe that wouldn't interest him, but maybe it would. And there were all kinds of books about math. You could definitely find biographies and interesting things, anything you wanted.

https://www.whatdowedoallday.com/math-art-books  Here's a link I was going through for math art books. Our library system has the Cool series, and I thought they might make a nice math camp for summer, working on projects from a different one each week. and https://www.whatdowedoallday.com/simple-spirolateral-math-art-for-kids and her top projects list https://www.whatdowedoallday.com/math-art-projects-kids/

 

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Why, why, why do I read threads like this when I know they're going to get me circling back to the beginning of my dilemma?!  OP, I'm in a similar place, but for different reasons.  YDS is bright but has a hard time memorizing (math facts take forever to stick), a REALLY slow processing speed, and fine motor issues + personality = HATES writing.  He's done RS A&B (got sick of card games by the end of B), parts of Singapore 2 & 3 (hated it--says it was too much and too straightforward/repetitive/boring), and BA3 (LOVED the cartoons and puzzles; wasn't a fan of the challenge level or sheer number of the standard problems).  I was trying to find something for this year that would be like BA puzzles plus concept development (he's very hands-on/visual, which is why I think the puzzles clicked for him) but perhaps less intense, but I couldn't do it.  He also really doesn't like me working at his elbow, so I tried piecing together a bunch of different worksheet-based resources for this year, but I feel like what I've got isn't conceptual enough.  Folks had me convinced to try CLE for next year (spiral with little practice, I'm told--so frequent review of topics but not too much writing/busy work?), but I'm questioning myself there.  Aaaand now I'm off to look up @PeterPan's list of resources and wonder once again about trying to put together my own thing again for next year.  😖 (<--This is supposedly a "Confounded Face".  That's the right emotion for me, but I'm not convinced about the expression.)

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1 hour ago, eternallytired said:

wonder once again about trying to put together my own thing again for next year. 

It's ok to take a break from stuff, do other things, but most people are going to do better with the structure of a curriculum. 

1 hour ago, eternallytired said:

try CLE

Either you don't look at samples or you don't trust yourself. :smile: Decide which it is. I'm pretty sure you can look at the samples and see there's an astonishing amount of mind numbing work in CLE, way more than anything you've used (more or less successfully, even with complaints).

1 hour ago, eternallytired said:

bright but has a hard time memorizing (math facts take forever to stick), a REALLY slow processing speed, and fine motor issues + personality = HATES writing. 

You have had evals? If you haven't, get 'em done. If you have, then they either already told you or you need to follow up with someone who WILL help you understand the data. Or come hang on LC. :smile:

-bright-->modify, look at gifted strategies. Compact, telescope, there are words for it. Expect to modify how you use curriculum. With my dd I used to say a curriculum for her was worthwhile if it got me 80% of the way there on accomplishing my goal. With ds, I look for something he can connect with, something that makes him think the way I want him to think. So maybe don't be too perfectionist but know why you're picking it and strike up your SELF CONFIDENCE.

-low processing speed--> fatigues when the mental work drones on. My dd had that large gap and I really had to keep her load tight. I found the hours per day she could work consistently and what I required HAD to fit into that. If I worked her too much one day, she was dead the next, sigh.

-hard time memorizing--> low dopamine, so are you looking at ADHD meds? Dopamine is necessary to make the connections that get the info from short to long term. Many people find their kids' math scores go up with the ADHD meds. My dd had a huge jump.

-fine motor-->scribe. Just do it. There's zero benefit to fighting over it. I mean, maybe you could make some headway. We could throw a good VMI workbook at you, which might help. He might have some stuff an OT would catch like weak core or being low tone. But it really doesn't matter.

-personality--> it's very hard to have your best side show when you're slogging against disability. With my kids (one who was crunchy and one who is astonishingly hard to work with) I'm always looking for what will flip the dynamic and empower. I fail a lot, haha, but I'm just saying I wouldn't assume the negative vibe will always stay negative. Sometimes something surprising or little flips it. 

Be kind to yourself. The hardest part of homeschooling sometimes is nurturing yourself confidence and deciding which voices NOT to listen to.

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54 minutes ago, PeterPan said:

It's ok to take a break from stuff, do other things, but most people are going to do better with the structure of a curriculum. 

I'm actually still using the structure of a curriculum (see how little I trust myself?): I used DD's old MM book to give me scope/sequence and then tried to find a variety of activities to help him work on those skills in that order.  But a lot of what I found is still too much or too little.  (Either too repetitive/overwhelming--a whole page of multi-digit multiplication [What was I thinking??]--or too little conceptual explanation.  Usually both, I'm deciding.  I've never tried to compile my own math curriculum before, though I have done so with confidence in pretty much every other subject.)

54 minutes ago, PeterPan said:

You have had evals? If you haven't, get 'em done. If you have, then they either already told you or you need to follow up with someone who WILL help you understand the data. Or come hang on LC. :smile:

I'm not sure what to request.  I had to fight (hard--for about a year) to get him to a Developmental Ped around his 5th bday because we were at the end of our ropes.  He's been on anxiety meds since then, which have helped a lot, but he's still a mystery to me in many ways.  DH and ODS have ADHD diagnoses (neither currently on meds), but YDS has no official diagnosis.  DP said he was too young for a diagnosis at 5; we still see him every 6 mos for Rx, but he's more a "no major probs = out the door" type of doc.  (It doesn't help that YDS is a year ahead academically, so it's hard to prove there's an issue.  And I'm driving an hour to see this DP because there's none closer.)  YDS had OT for handwriting last year and the OT said he had extremely low muscle tone and probably SPD--but once again, nothing official and no resources to help.  (But at least we'd fixed his primitive reflex issues, which the Developmental Optometrist diagnosed a few years earlier, at the same time as the tracking/focus issues!)

1 hour ago, PeterPan said:

Either you don't look at samples or you don't trust yourself. :smile: Decide which it is. I'm pretty sure you can look at the samples and see there's an astonishing amount of mind numbing work in CLE, way more than anything you've used (more or less successfully, even with complaints).

Be kind to yourself. The hardest part of homeschooling sometimes is nurturing yourself confidence and deciding which voices NOT to listen to.

My problem is that I can't find what I'm looking for, so I'm trying to find recommendations.  Several people suggested TT, but if there's a way to game the system (and I've heard there is), YDS will find it.  (He's definitely brilliant at finding ways to avoid things he hates!)  The only other recommendation I've gotten repeatedly is for CLE.  As you can tell from my hesitation, I'm not convinced it's right--but the idea of generating my own again is exhausting, and like I said, even what I tried to compile is just not filling the bill.  I just spent two hours writing out the S&S for 5th grade math and trying to see what resources I have that would fit, but so many of my "fun" resources require a hodge-podge of skills, rather than building skills in a systematic way.  Sigh.  (And I scribe for him or switch to oral for everything else, but I need him to do a few things at least partly on his own so I can also work with his siblings.)

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4 hours ago, eternallytired said:

My problem is that I can't find what I'm looking for, so I'm trying to find recommendations.  Several people suggested TT, but if there's a way to game the system (and I've heard there is), YDS will find it.  (He's definitely brilliant at finding ways to avoid things he hates!)  The only other recommendation I've gotten repeatedly is for CLE. 

People love CLE because it’s designed well, goes through all the topics, and is gentle. And some people love that it’s written to the student (I think.)

It’s not a “mathy,” fun program. I wish people wouldn’t suggest it indiscriminately, because I can’t imagine it working for a kid who found Singapore dull.

Why not just buy a big book of BA puzzles and the BA comics and some Murderous Math books and teach concepts as they come up? He seems like he LIKES math. I’d think that preserving that is a great idea.

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6 hours ago, eternallytired said:

probably SPD

So I'll just make a suggestion. 

https://www.kelly-mahler.com/what-is-interoception/  

There's a curriculum for interoception, and it's the issue that rolls with the SPD. It's a newer thing to treat but this link can set you up with everything you need. It would be a back door way to hit the other stuff, because you're improving self awareness, self advocacy, and hence problem solving. You need more data, but you can't get what's locked up in him. So working on interoception may get you that data.

6 hours ago, eternallytired said:

extremely low muscle tone

Oh my. My dd is floppy with her low tone and my ds is not. No great answers, sigh. Tech. There are theories about how you can do something with OT to get it to improve (vestibular, whatever). Actually, there's a school of thought that 80% of the dyspraxia symptoms resulting from the low tone will improve with a basic exercise regimen. https://www.amazon.com/Beating-Dyspraxia-Hop-Skip-Jump/dp/1849055602/ref=sr_1_1?dchild=1&keywords=beating+dyspraxia+with+a+hop&qid=1615039636&sr=8-1  I have the book, not saying it's lightning bolt amazing. At least think about it as a concept, how working on strength will pull some of it into check. Swimming can be the BOMB for these kids. Has he done swimming yet? Gymnastics and weight lifting are good too.

6 hours ago, eternallytired said:

I'm not sure what to request. 

Neuropsych eval with someone who specializes in laundry list (ASD, CP, complex ADHD, etc.).

6 hours ago, eternallytired said:

It doesn't help that YDS is a year ahead academically, so it's hard to prove there's an issue.

Maybe time for a new doctor? I mean, what is he doing for you? We're now with a family practice doctor, but the ped we were with for years was really basic. You go in and do his tap tap computer attention test and you get the meds, boom. So what is with the gate keeping?

6 hours ago, eternallytired said:

And I'm driving an hour to see this DP because there's none closer.

Some of the "experts" and specialists are harder to work with than more typical doctors and psychs who LISTEN. If the guy was LISTENING something would happen. 

6 hours ago, eternallytired said:

way to game the system (and I've heard there is), YDS will find it. 

Sure. We did TT with my dd and while it was review it was handy (making her facts faster actually, I can recommend it for that!), but once at instructional level it was a bust.

We did well with BJU in the middle years and we did some MM that she sorta tolerated. But the BJU (when I had time, I was dealing with ds, ugh) was a good fit. It's meant to be taught and can scale up and down to fit the student. For her, that interaction was really helpful, so BJU was a solid choice. In high school she finally went to MUS, which required her to learn how to monitor her learning and also worked out well.

With my ds, like I think I said earlier in the thread I go through education stores and look at all the major workbook publishers. To keep him calm, I usually give him *one page* at a time. So I'm usually looking for something I can print and use like that. I've done a lot of Ronit Bird with him, which addresses the dyscalculia piece, and I pick workbooks to *apply* that conceptual instrction. I also use a lot of hands on kits from Lakeshore Learning. I get a TON OF MILEAGE from my Lakeshore Learning stuff. I just bought three more boxes of math stuff from them. They're just some simple multi-step word problem cards, but they follow that one thing at a time strategy that works well with my ds to keep the anxiety down. 

I try to have three components to our math time, so something for facts, something for conceptual, something for application. I really like Evan Moor's workbooks for daily word problems with the most recent common core update. They give me those small amounts of work that fit really well with his anxiety and ASD. 

My ds is older than yours, but I can tell you another thing I'm doing now, that might seem odd I guess, is I'm looking at using Remedia materials (which are you could say remedial) out of age. So something for older kids and pulling it down. Maybe not too much, hahaha. But the idea is there. So again I'm getting that b&w, very simple, print and hand him a page that we can do together, not overwhelming, but I can adjust the level of interest. https://remediadigital.com/  They have digital and print, but you could see if anything interests you. I think I just got Menu Planning and I'm not sure what all else. They had a slew of them in the series I was looking at so I bought a couple for now and wrote down more to do as our plan for next year.

6 hours ago, eternallytired said:

I just spent two hours writing out the S&S for 5th grade math and trying to see what resources I have that would fit, but so many of my "fun" resources require a hodge-podge of skills, rather than building skills in a systematic way. 

Yeah, I don't have time for that. Father in assisted living, ds with lots of therapies, no time, lol. So shhh, but I make sure we work on the basic facts, I have some kits for multidigit add/subtr/mult/divide, and then I find workbooks and just rotate through what we're working on. Like I think I just picked up a Remedia clocks workbook and one on money. It had been a while, so we're cycling back fresh. So the discovery of a resource that fits drives what I'm covering, rather than me looking for a resource to fit my topic. Since with my ds the fit is the most important thing, I look for these materials that fit, stray workbooks and kits, and I let it pan out in the wash.

https://www.lakeshorelearning.com/  I drop $$$$$$ here. STEM kits, math, hands-on spelling, all kinds of stuff that has small chunks and clear structure that I can get to work for my ds. I take anything that will work with him at the moment, because frankly what does not work is to say he has to do it because the curriculum says so, lol.

https://www.evan-moor.com/daily-word-problems-grade-3-teachers-edition-print

https://www.lakeshorelearning.com/products/math/multiskill-math-products/mastering-multistep-problem-solving-cards-gr3/p/EE413  Here's an example of those kits I just picked up. They're on clearance right now, hence the low (for them) price. I'm not saying they're so great that you should buy them if money is super tight. Just for us, they give structure, doing say 2 a day, that really works well for ds. But I get you'll be looking at 50 other products that won't fit. It's all there, lol.

https://www.lakeshorelearning.com/products/math/place-value/hands-on-addition-regrouping-kit/p/FF297  There's a series of these hands-on kits.

I'm not sure those things are what you want, lol. But when I say I'm walking education stores looking for stuff, that's one I'm walking. And you can see the other publishers they carry for workbooks and then go through those publisher sites to find things, kwim? It usually takes me a whole evening (4-6 hours) or even two days to go through sites sifting to find gems. I just spent hours going through everything Scholastic has marked for 5th gr math. That's how I find the gems, just lots of looking honestly. I'm in sync with my kid, like you are with yours, and when I see it I know.

6 hours ago, eternallytired said:

only other recommendation I've gotten repeatedly is for CLE.

Are their kids like yours?? I don't know that either of mine are, but it's really something to watch. Not only what the dc is like who is using it, but the context. If someone has 7 kids and they say something is great, it's great in their context because it meets their needs, kwim? When you have 1-2, you might roll totally differently. If you have 3, maybe what I do is impractical, kwim? It was just something I had to learn the hard way, to look at context.

I think not having fresh psych evals on this dc is leaving you without the information to choose materials. I'm not saying it would be easier with evals, hahaha. What you might do is go the opposite direction in looking for a psych. You've already got a very professional, antiseptic DP. What about looking for an educational psychologist, someone who will SPEND TIME with you and TALK with you about how to APPLY the things they find in their eval, kwim? That's what you're wanting. You don't just need numbers right now but you need how to apply the numbers. And you don't need specific materials but you need the characteristics of what you're looking for. 

Like when my dd had her first psych eval, I spent quite a while grilling the psych, going through every subject. It was very cathartic btw, lol. But anyway, for each thing I explained to him the RANGE of what I could make happen (traditional textbooks on one end to way out of the box on the other) and this man looked at me and for EVERY SINGLE THING said GO OUT OF THE BOX. Now no one ever says that to me about my ds, lol. They say to get high interest materials that are brief that can be handed as single sheets to reduce anxiety. So that's what I do with him. But for dd, a different dc, they could read the tea leaves and say GO WAY OUT OF THE BOX. That advice stood me really well with her and got us through high school in relative peace!

I don't know what your ds needs, but for us evals were a part of that process. And if you want someone to help you know how to apply them then find someone who is easy to talk with who is good at applying the concepts. Could be an educational psych, could be a Hoagies Gifted psych. They really just vary and you can call around and see.

10 hours ago, eternallytired said:

Singapore 2 & 3 (hated it--says it was too much and too straightforward/repetitive/boring),

Yeah, it's not nearly as interesting as some people imply. It amazes people who can't solve those problems naturally, and it's not very interesting if you can. Was never really a fan. But think about what that tells you? It means he's bright and that you need to CROSS OFF PROBLEMS and that you're looking for something intriguing. So it could be single sheet boring plus single sheet intriguing, or it could be something with intriguing woven in (BJU). 

The other thing I do with my ds to get intriguing, and I think I hinted at this, is I don't look grade/age appropriate for things I want to be intriguing. So like 3rd gr doing Didax 5-8. So I might have him doing word problems 2 grades low and intriguing stuff 2 grades high, kwim? Now BJU does *try* to weave that flex in. I haven't seen the newest editions in person enough to know how well they pull it off. That's the theory though with properly written classroom materials, that they can flex up and down to meet a range of students.

Well have fun. Hope you get it worked out. :smile:

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7 hours ago, eternallytired said:

YDS had OT for handwriting last year

https://www.therapro.com/Developing-Visual-Motor-Integration.html  This is stinkin expensive but it has gotten more done than most of our OT for handwriting. They were doing stuff like this with dots and completing drawings, but they were not systematic. This program is insanely systematic and it really raises the bar on how they attend and think through the visual motor piece.

My ds is probably never going to be terribly functional with handwriting. I'm starting Cursive Logic with him now that we're mostly through this VMI workbook, but we'll see. And the guy I found to do an assistive tech eval for us said VMI or visual perception or both will usually be underlying the writing issues. So I felt like this was my attempt to say I had done everything I could, lol.

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4 hours ago, Not_a_Number said:

People love CLE because it’s designed well, goes through all the topics, and is gentle. And some people love that it’s written to the student (I think.)

It’s not a “mathy,” fun program. I wish people wouldn’t suggest it indiscriminately, because I can’t imagine it working for a kid who found Singapore dull.

Why not just buy a big book of BA puzzles and the BA comics and some Murderous Math books and teach concepts as they come up? He seems like he LIKES math. I’d think that preserving that is a great idea.

See, and there's my problem: sometimes DS seems to understand a concept intuitively, and sometimes he just stares at me blankly.  (Like fractions.  We went through the Singapore fractions--in 3? I think--and the idea of equivalent fractions/changing denominators just did NOT click.  I finally moved on.  He hit it again in Beast, and it was still a "hmmm" concept for him.)  So stuff like that makes me think maybe I'm overestimating his ability and need to slow down.  I think what I'm finding overall is that he does NOT understand anything we try to do with standard algorithms.  That's what I loved about RS B--it physically showed you the concept (trading out tens for ones using cards or the abacus) and then very clearly tied it to the standard, written way of doing it.  But I hated RS-C (the first half was all review, the second/geometry half required a lot of fine motor), so we dropped it after B.  For the other kids, it was enough foundation.  For him, I feel like I need discovery/hands-on still.  I'm now reflecting and thinking that maybe everything he does really well at is something we introduced in RS B.  Huh.  I'll have to ponder that a little more.

I have a couple Murderous Maths books and all the 3-5 BA guides.  Would that (plus the puzzles) be enough?  I'm already planning to put him on Reflex Math again for facts.  He hated it a couple years ago, but it adjusts to your typing/reaction speed each time you use it, and it WORKED to get his addition/subtraction facts automatic, so I'm going to do it again for multiplication/division.  I think that's the theme of everyone on this thread.  If I don't do a standard, publisher-approved, standards-aligned curriculum, IS IT ENOUGH?!  Or am I dooming my child to a lifetime of misery due to my educational misstep?!  (Okay, dialing back the drama. 😁)

In totally unrelated news, my older DS managed to struggle through that AoPS Intro to Alg chapter 10 and actually did better than expected on the review at the end (80% the first time through, and most mistakes he was quickly able to correct when I told him his solution was incorrect).  He's now sailing (well, at his slow pace) through 11 without issue.  So at least I have hope we can get through this level, thanks to your encouragement.

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2 minutes ago, eternallytired said:

I think what I'm finding overall is that he does NOT understand anything we try to do with standard algorithms. 

You know something? That's really, really common. Lots of kids who thrive with standard algorithms aren't actually fully absorbing what they are doing. He seems like a kid who prizes full understanding and hands-on learning. That's a GOOD thing!! 

 

2 minutes ago, eternallytired said:

I have a couple Murderous Maths books and all the 3-5 BA guides.  Would that (plus the puzzles) be enough?  I'm already planning to put him on Reflex Math again for facts.  He hated it a couple years ago, but it adjusts to your typing/reaction speed each time you use it, and it WORKED to get his addition/subtraction facts automatic, so I'm going to do it again for multiplication/division.  I think that's the theme of everyone on this thread.  If I don't do a standard, publisher-approved, standards-aligned curriculum, IS IT ENOUGH?!  Or am I dooming my child to a lifetime of misery due to my educational misstep?!  (Okay, dialing back the drama. 😁)

I think it's enough, as long as you figure out a way to teach the concepts he gets stuck on 🙂 . 

For what it's worth, I teach fractions as pure division. So, 2/3 is just 2 split into 3 equal parts. And if it's not obvious to him that 4/6 is 2/3... that's totally fine! Just have him play with that idea. They can be apples, or rectangles, or cookies... but it's just division. 

 

3 minutes ago, eternallytired said:

In totally unrelated news, my older DS managed to struggle through that AoPS Intro to Alg chapter 10 and actually did better than expected on the review at the end (80% the first time through, and most mistakes he was quickly able to correct when I told him his solution was incorrect).  He's now sailing (well, at his slow pace) through 11 without issue.  So at least I have hope we can get through this level, thanks to your encouragement.

Oh, I'm really glad! Please tag me if he gets stuck on anything!! I like math, as you can probably tell 🙂 . 

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2 hours ago, PeterPan said:

Oh my. My dd is floppy with her low tone and my ds is not. No great answers, sigh. Tech. There are theories about how you can do something with OT to get it to improve (vestibular, whatever). Actually, there's a school of thought that 80% of the dyspraxia symptoms resulting from the low tone will improve with a basic exercise regimen.

Whoa!  So much to respond to!  Thanks for taking the time to share your thoughts!

The overall muscle tone is significantly improved now.  The funny thing is, I never thought it odd that he had no visible muscle tone, since ODS is the same way.  We've used extracurriculars to work on this in a fun way--gymnastics and now taekwondo for two years, and that has helped immensely.  I'm hoping that guitar lessons (his choice) will ultimately strengthen his hand muscles so writing won't be so much of a bear for him, but we'll see.

2 hours ago, PeterPan said:

Neuropsych eval with someone who specializes in laundry list (ASD, CP, complex ADHD, etc.).

Maybe time for a new doctor? I mean, what is he doing for you? We're now with a family practice doctor, but the ped we were with for years was really basic. You go in and do his tap tap computer attention test and you get the meds, boom. So what is with the gate keeping?

Some of the "experts" and specialists are harder to work with than more typical doctors and psychs who LISTEN. If the guy was LISTENING something would happen. 

I'll poke around locally and see if I can find any resources (and info on cost/insurance) for an eval.  Honestly, I was so happy that a doctor finally listened to me and said, "You're right, a kid who shouts constantly, never wants to leave home, freaks out as if the world is ending at the slightest scratch, and eats only three foods and only in a certain manner is NOT a happy, healthy child."  For the next couple years, I just basked in his growth and progress.  But now I'm at the point where I feel like he's spinning his wheels in some ways, and I'm trying to figure out if that's just my perception or if it's reality.  I've not had much luck with doctors, though.  ODS had a neurologist to diagnose ADHD and prescribe meds when he was younger, but it was another "fill-out-the-survey, have some meds, good luck" situation.  I wasn't offered any strategies, information, resources on how to help him manage.  So I'm not holding my breath.

I'm going to spend this weekend wading through the various resources you mentioned/linked.  Thanks again for the time you took to respond@

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2 hours ago, eternallytired said:

I'll poke around locally and see if I can find any resources (and info on cost/insurance) for an eval. 

While you’re hunting, I strongly recommend seeking out someone who specifically has experience with gifted / accelerated kids with ADHD, if you can. I know they’re few & far between, but it can also make all the difference.

My DS8 “passed” the Connors. He was climbing under the desk, falling off his chair, talking a mile a minute, bouncing around the room, flailing on the floor saying he was boooored etc - but he passed. 

His processing speed, while a full standard deviation or more below all other indexes, falls into the “Average” range.

His assessor did not hesitate to diagnose because she had experience with how ADHD presents in gifted children & this was completely in line with her experience. 

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