Topic | CM Organizer with High School? Transcripts?

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  • kimkg
    Member

    I am attempting to set up the CM Organizer trial for my high schooler but 1) find that none of the resources are already in the Book Finder 2) the subjects available are too limited and 3) there is no way to create a transcript 4) I cannot see a future schedule to make sure I’m entering items correctly, 5) I see no variety of reports, such as “books read,” etc.

    Am I missing something or is this program just designed for elementary students?

    Sonya Shafer
    Moderator

    The CM Organizer is designed to be used with any age student. I’m using it for my two high schoolers this year, as well as my other younger children. Let me see if I can address each issue you mentioned, kimkg.

    1. You can add your own resources. We’ve entered more than 1500 resources in the CM Bookfinder so far across all the grades, and continue to enter more as we go along, but there are so many good resources out there that one of our goals is to give users the ability to share the resources they’ve entered too.
    2. Yep, we’re also working toward letting users add their own subjects. That’s on the to-do list also.
    3. Since the CM Organizer doesn’t keep track of grades (Charlotte Mason didn’t believe in giving grades), we don’t offer a way to create a transcript, you’re right. I just downloaded a free template and sample from Covenant College and am filling it in for my high schoolers.
    4. The Scheduler page should list all your entered resources in the order you’ve selected to use them and divided by subject. But if you want to look at specific assignments on a future calendar date (for example, “show me assignments for the next two weeks”), the Organizer doesn’t do that. It takes things one day at a time to give the most flexibility.
    5. More report options is another item on our Future Features List. When we launched the CM Organizer less than a year ago, we knew it didn’t have all the features we had dreamed of yet, but we wanted to at least get it started. We have lots of ideas for ways to make it even better, and we’re still working to improve it. 🙂

    I’m glad you’re using the free trial. That’s why we make it available — so each person can see if it will meet her needs. I hope these comments help answer your questions.

    Bookworm
    Participant

    It’s easy to add resources. I have a son going into “9th grade” next year and we’ve entered in many of the things I want to use.

    I’ve just made the subjects work for me. For example, economics is a subject very important to me. At the moment, I’m using “Business Skills” as the “subject” I “file” our economics work under. I’ll be glad when we can add our own, but I’m making it work now anyway.

    As for the transcript, no, that’s not really the focus of this program. It does keep a nice record of work. I actually really like the reports it does print out. It helps me to estimate about how much time we are spending in various subjects so I can keep a running total of time spent to help me in credit hours on our transcripts. There are many great transcript aids out there. I like this site: http://www.everyday-education.com/home/index.shtml

    Not only does this lady have great guidance for transcripts, but she understands and recommends CM methods too. I just use a form, keep a running tally of work done with time estimates, and I’ll make it all go together later.

    The “future schedule” thing took me a little time to get used to, myself, since I’d never seen another method like this. But now that I’m used to it, I cannot possibly emphasize enough how much I love it. I no longer run around saying dumb things like “But you HAVE to finish your math now, even if it is midnight, or I’ll have to go bump all the schedules in the computer around and that takes forever!!!!” 🙂

    As I mentioned, I think the reports can be made to work. There will be more options later, but for now the work completed gives me enough to go on. I make my kids keep a simple record of books read outside my usual “school assignments” and I can keep both lists in our folder for the year with the transcript time estimates. It works well enough for me.

    So, I don’t want to tell you that this is the perfect answer for everything, but keep thinking about it with an open mind for a bit. If you think it can’t work, then OK, but if you still remain attracted to it, then there are ways to make it work well enough to get done what you need done.

    Michelle D

    Sharon
    Participant

    I know this is an old post, but I have a question.

    For high school transcript purposes, I am either keeping track of Carnegie units (150 hrs, some use 120) or by the completed book, e.g., math book. Is that something I will be able to do via the organizer or is it something my dd’s should do manually? I’m not there yet, but I’m thinking about the future because I’ll be there very soon.

    How do others keep track of your hours for transcripts (in order to put enough hours for one class)?

    Thanks!!

    Sharon

    Sonya Shafer
    Moderator

    The CM Organizer will definitely help you keep track of the books. (One of the future features we want to do is a report option that gives a bibliography of books that were used.) For hours, I just kept a separate record. One easy way is to get some 3×5 cards and label them with the various high school subjects/topics. Then jot down any hours that would count for those subjects as the child does them during the four years of high school. You can total up the hours quite easily. And you can combine similar cards as needed.

    meagan
    Participant

    I love the index card idea!!!  I have a 14 year old and I have been panicking myself about how I was going to keep track of what was required and all that.  I do have a question related to that.  Our eldest is the 14 year old, though he started school a year late so if he stayed in the public school he would only be entering 8th grade.  He would really love to “catch up” and be done with school when his peers are.  I also have a 10 year old who really wants to be able to graduate early and go onto college (he wants to be either an arecheologist or a veternarian, which he realizes both require massive amounts of schooling).  At what point in time do you start giving the child credit towards high school requirements?

    Sonya Shafer
    Moderator

    It’s up to you whether to start keeping track in 8th grade or 9th; however, most transcripts assume only four years’ worth of work. So if your 14 yo wants to start high school work this coming year, go for it. 

    Bookworm
    Participant

    Hey, I have a future veterinarian hopeful!  Veterinary school is very competitive!

    I agree with Sonya–you need four years of high school credits.  If you do something high school level before that, just list it as a prerequisite–for instance, all my sons have done algebra before “9th grade” so I just mention it was completed and begin compiling their four years’ worth of math transcript material AFTER that.

    I don’t use index cards so much as I do course descriptions.  Early on we laid out a “basic plan”  I knew that, using CM style education, we wouldn’t necessarily be completing a “course” in one year in each subject, so I planned what “courses” we should have enough material for to give credit, and I make up a course description page.  Each year, I add what the student did for that course in that year–I take everything–formal coursework, free reading books that related, any work or volunteer experience, videos–and keep track of it and approximate time spent.  I attach things like tables of contents of books, book and video abstracts, etc.  and keep it all in a binder.  I keep the yearly reports from the Organizer in there as well, and transfer the info to the appropriate course description pages.  Fun! 

     

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