Topic | 6th grade year

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  • Charlene
    Participant

    I noticed in another thread that there are a lot of kids going into 6th grade. My son started our 6th year on Monday. My mom was here for a visit last night and we got to talking about his written narrations – something we are struggling with right now. She started to compare him to PS kids. I about screamed! I’ve been homeschooling for 15 years and have graduated 2 already, you’d think by now that she would drop the whole PS stuff. I just told here I had no idea how he compared to 6th grade PS’ers.

    It did get me to thinking about what other 6th grade CM’ers are doing though. Not trying to compare my ds but for my own benifit. I’d like to see what others have scheduled, maybe something I’ve missed in my planning or what-not. It would also be good just to see if others are having some of the same issues. Some of my sons issues are written narrations, spelling and remembering a person’s name. He can’t even remember his own friends names, he identifies them by where they live or what they look like. 

    Here is what our 6th year looks like: (we are usually finished by 12:30)

    Term 1

    History/Geography:

    Mod 1: Ancient Egypt (just the History portion) 5x wk

    A Child’s Geography Vol. 1 (finishing up from last year) 5x wk

    Math:

    Your Business Math Series Pet Store (we are loving this!) 5x wk

    Math It (just for fun) 1x wk

    Science:Apologia Human Anatomy & Phisiology (finishing up from last year) 5x wk

    Outdoor Hour Challenges (Saturday) 1x wk 

    Language Arts:

    Intermediate Language Lessons 3x wk

    Word of the Week Vol 1 (finishing up from last year) 5x wk

    Easy Grammar 5x wk

    Dictation Day by Day 5x wk

    Dictation Spelling Book (he types this) 2x wk 

    Literature:

    (mom reads):

    Tales of Troy and Greece 3x wk

    The Arabian Nights 2x wk

    Shakespeare 1x wk 

    Cleopatra VII The Royal Diaries (bedtime) 5x wk 

    (son reads):

    Little House on the Prairie (reads aloud) 5x wk

    Book from library (at night) 5x wk 

    Personal Development:

    Prudence and the Millers 5x wk 

    Poetry 1x wk

    Picture Study 1x wk

    Music Study 1x wk 

    Term 2

    Bible/History/Geography:

    Mod 2: Ancient Greece 5x wk (The Golden Fleece, Famous Men of Greece, The Children’s Homer, Archimedes and the Door of Science)

    A Child’s Geography Vol. 2 (finishing up from last year) 5x wk

    Math:

    Teaching Textbook 6

    Science:

    Apologia Human Anatomy & Phisiology (finishing up from last year) 5x wk

    Outdoor Hour Challenges (Saturday) 1x wk 

    Language Arts:

    Intermediate Language Lessons 3x wk

    Word of the Week Vol 2  5x wk

    Easy Grammar 5x wk

    Dictation Day by Day 5x wk

    Dictation Spelling Book (he types this) 2x wk 

    Literature:

    (mom reads):

    Tales of Troy and Greece 3x wk

    The Arabian Nights 2x wk

    Shakespeare 1x wk

    ??? (literature book for bedtime) 5x wk 

    (son reads):

    Little House on the Prairie (reads aloud) 5x wk

    Book from library (at night) 5x wk 

    Poetry 1x wk

    Picture Study 1x wk

    Music Study 1x wk 

    Term 3

    Bible/History/Geography:

    Mod 2: Ancient Greece  5x wk

    A Child’s Geography Vol. 2 5x wk

    Math:

    Teaching Textbook 6

    Science:

    Apologia Exploring Creation With General Science 5x week

    Outdoor Our Challenges (Saturday) 1x wk 

    Language Arts:

    Intermediate Language Lessons 3x wk

    Word of the Week Vol 2 5x wk

    Easy Grammar 5x wk

    Dictation Day by Day 5x wk

    Dictation Spelling Book (he types this) 2x wk 

    Literature:

    (mom reads):

    Tales of Troy and Greece 3x wk

    Robinson Crusoe 2x wk

    ??? (literature book for bedtime) 5x wk 

    (son reads):

    Little House on the Prairie (reads aloud) 5x wk

    Book from library (at night) 5x wk 

    Poetry 1x wk

    Picture Study 1x wk

    Music Study 1x wk

    4myboys
    Participant

    Wow!  I haven’t got my schedule down to terms yet.  But if it’s any consolation, my 6th grader hasn’t even started written narrations yet, but will in September.  My boys were in PS until I started homeschooling them last September.  It was primarily a “deschool year” with lots of reading.  Our Focus was on math and copywork (my ds has dysgraphia) and everything else was bonus. 

    One thing I know from working in the school and talking with many teachers is that even in the PS there is a huge range of abilities within a grade.  While the average 6th grader may be expected to achieve a certian goal set by a teacher, there are many children who will fall short, and many others who will exceed.  It is completely unfair to judge or compare a child to anyone other than himself, and that applies to PS and homeschooled children.  My son would have been one to fall very short of the mark, though his verbal narration skills are excellent.  I also know that my mother would say the same thing yours did if she were here (thankfully she lives several provinces away and I don’t have to deal with her condemnation too much.  She was trained as an upper elementary school teacher, but never worked in an actual school.) 

    Keep doing what you’re doing and trusting that you know what’s best for your child.  Keep trusting and following God’s plan for your family and just remember that we are called to NOT reform to the pattern of this world.  You are a brave woman dedicated to the Lord and your family. 

    crazy4boys
    Participant

    Looks very thorough.  My going-into-6th-grade son has a very similar schedule.  The only (minor) differences are that we do history & science 4 days a week instead of 5 and we’re using a different language arts program.  I like your idea of putting the Outdoor Hour Challenge on Saturdays.  I may have to add that in!

    We are transitioning into written narrations.  He’s been working on it for a while, here and there, but this coming year will be the BIG transition as in I’ll require it weekly instead of once or twice a month.  His spelling has improved a lot so he has more confidence.  His older brother is still really struggling with this so he’ll go more slowly.

    You’re doing a great job!  Don’t worry about the other kids.  Your son is getting an excellent education at his pace.  He’ll love learning and will retain it so much better because of the methods and materials you’re choosing.

     

    pslively
    Participant

    Here’s what my 6th grader is doing:  (We generally only school three days per week, so most everything happens every day.)

    Life of Fred Fractions and Decimals and Strayer Upton tan book for math (alternating days)

    Writing with Ease, book 3 for narration/dictation practice – will transition to Writing with Skill for 2nd semester

    Storybook of Science

    Building Foundations of Scientific Understanding  (with family)

    Usborne book of the Microscope Unit Study (with family)

    SCM Module 6 (with family) along with century book and personal atlas – we don’t use Bible portion though

    Commonplace book

    Around the World in 80 Days Geography Study (with family) – this only lasts 6 weeks and we will do it before beginning SCM module 6

    The Most Important Thing You’ll Ever Study (with family)

    Mind Benders, level B

    Apologia General Science or Elementary Anatomy book (haven’t decided yet)

    6 Literature studies using Any Novel Study Guide:  Emma, The Red Badge of Courage, Lad: A Dog, Helen Keller, the Story of My Life, and Robinson Crusoe

    Extra reading:  In His Steps, Oliver Twist, Captains Courageous, McGuffey’s Fourth Reader

    Spiritual: Polished Cornerstones, Beautiful Girlhood, Stepping Heavenward

    French:  Beginning Francais for occasional use, Easy French Reader, Barrons Learn French the Fast and Fun Way

    Fix It Grammar and Editing

    Stobaugh’s Greek Morphemes (not until 2nd semester)

    IEW – American History based Writing Lessons (with family)

    Wednesday co-op at the park for nature study

    I would love to see what everyone else is using with their middle schoolers.  Many times this is how I learn about new and wonderful books.  We also have issues with narrations, so we are working on that this year.  She likes writing in general but has trouble organizing her thoughts so we will be working on that as well.

    Charlene
    Participant

    @4myboys & @crazy4boys Thanks for the kind words. I guess I needed to hear them. 

    It is nice to know that others are working on the same skills as my son. His oral narrations are very good but getting him to write them leads to tears. It seems like I’m missing a step or two between oral and written. I found an old post where Sonya gave some tips on transitioning into writing but now I’ve lost it. I remember one of the tips was to have him dictate to me and then stop right before the last paragraph and have him write just that part. 

    @crazy4boys What did you use for spelling that gave your son confidence? This is another weak area for us. I went back and re-read some of CM’s ideas about spelling. She said that reading good literature would make a good speller. That’s when I realized he needed to be reading on his own more. 

    @pslively What is a Commonplace book and how do you use it?

    crazy4boys
    Participant

    Charlene  – we’ve been using All About Spelling.  He’s almost done with Level 3.  Not strictly CM, but close.  We both like it and I’ve seen definite improvement in his spelling (and in his brothers).  I rarely hear “How do you spell ______?” anymore.  He also reads a TON which I encourage!

    pslively
    Participant

    I’m sorry but I cannot get the link to post that explains a commonplace book.  If you go to selfmadescholar.com you can read about it there.  Or just do a google search and you will find some information readily enough. 

    I would love to give you detailed information about how we are going to use it, but the truth is that we haven’t really determined that yet.  My daughter was going to do it completely on her own, choosing her own things to write in it, but she is feeling overwhelmed by the lack of direction.  So that is something we are going to discuss this weekend together.  If you go read about them and you have any insights or brilliant ideas, I would love to hear them.  To me this is a more grown-up version of simple copywork.  And it’s kind of the same idea as the Book of Mottoes here on SCM.

    There is also a helpful article at charlottemasonhelp.com.  But again, can’t get the link to post.  This always happens when I use Internet Explorer.  UGH!

    Charlene
    Participant

    I would love to not hear “How do I spell….” for almost every word he tries to write. I’ve tried Spelling Power, Spelling Wisdom and now Dictation Day by Day. We are almost done with the 1st Day by Day book and I don’t see much impovement at all. I should look into All About Spelling more. Since it’s in levels does that mean you can just start with level 1 no matter the age?

    I briefly looked up the commonplace book and it sounds great. It reminds me of the notebooks that Ben Franklin and Da Vinci created. This is definitely something I want to consider using for the future. My sister created something similiar when she was in high school, only hers had a specific theme. Her’s was called, “Our Wedding Day” and she put song titles, quotes, color swatches, cut pictures from magazines and anything else that she might someday want for her wedding. Maybe if your daughter narrowed hers to one theme it wouldn’t be so overwhelming.

    Thanks for the info and great suggestions!

    Rachel White
    Participant

    Sometimes the “how do I spell…” is just not wanting to think. If he’s used to twaddle in most areas then it’s just natural that it would apply to other areas tha require effort. If any child can get their parent to do most of the thinking for them then they’ll do it. You can dramatically reduce those instances by requiring them to look up each word. If it’s blatantly simple, require him to sound it out loud.

    My son (11) is a very advanced reader, but isn’t a natural speller. In addition to dictation, I’m going to have him start Megawords 1 this next year. I had him do Sequential Sp. 1 last year and it helped some, but I noticed the words he was misspelling were multi-syllabic words and it was in the sounding out. What I figured out was that, since he had zoomed into reading so quickly, he literally skipped large portions of phonetic training. So Megawords is specifically for 4th gr. and up in the area of multi-syllabic words; it doesn’t go all the way back to the beginning like AAS, which can be insulting to advanced, older readers; plus it’s not as expensive AND is student-directed instead of parent.

    http://eps.schoolspecialty.com/products/details.cfm?seriesonly=900M

    crazy4boys
    Participant

    Charlene – I did start my older boys back at the beginning of AAS, Level 1.  We worked through it as quickly as they needed to.  If they had learned the rule and could spell the words easily, I moved them forward.  If they struggled with a particular rule then we stayed there for a bit, using all the regular words, reinforcement words, phrases and sentences.  One son zipped through it, the other took much longer.  They never complained of it being ‘baby’ or ‘childish’ – it was just spelling and they did it.  Since I have 2 others coming behind the older 2 I thought the investment worth it.  You only need a teacher’s book and a student packet and it’s completely reusable.  I think part of our success with AAS is that the format and style worked for ME so I was happy to teach it every day and it was easy to implement.

    Each family is different, each child is different.  In addition to the AAS we also use copywork and lots of reading.  Some dictation and slowly moving into written narrations.  

Viewing 10 posts - 1 through 10 (of 10 total)
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