Hi everyone. 🙂
I am new to this site and to the CM method, although I’ve done a little reading and become familar with the method. I am not new to homeschooling; I have two sons in 10th and 7th grades I have been home educating for a few years now. Even though I am not “officially” using CM for school, I do use a literature approach to history and love it.
My dilemma right now is that I have a panicked request from my best friend who has just decided to pull her 10th grade daughter out of the public high school. She is looking to me for help in setting up a curriculum which I am happy to do, but I am unfamilar with some of the issues this dear girl has. She has learning issues (although I am certain they have more to do with her lack of interest in many subjects). She is not college-bound and really just hopes to be a wife and mom someday so this isn’t a matter of getting her ready for more rigorous work.
I have determined this much: CM is the way I want to go with this girl. I know she has more in her head than anyone has ever given her credit for and I’m looking for ways to pull some of that out of her. I can wrap my brain around history and lit, but I’ve no idea where to go with science and math. (I do believe that her math learning issues are somewhat legitimate so I want to keep these two subjects low key).
Does anyone have any advice for me? I am a research-loving girl but frankly, I just don’t have the time to be poring over curriculum websites; this girl needs to start school at home now.
Thanks in advance for any help you can offer!Rachel WhiteParticipant
If she struggled in math and it’s not really her ‘thing’ anyway, plus, to take some pressure off the mom from teaching hardcore high school math (which is probably frightening for the mom), I’d suggest Teaching Textbooks. Ask the mom, where she was in gov’t. school, probably in a Geometry class; she may have to go backwards in math to actually understand the concepts and TT has placement tests; so have her mom have the dd take the placement tests. Now, TT teaches Alg. 1 and 2 back to back, then Geometry, instead of breaking them up, so a placement test is necessary and maybe even contacting at the site. However, I’m assuming, she’ll need to take Alg. 1 over again, even moving through it quickly, then onto Alg. 2, then Geometry and Pre-cal. if they find the curriculum a success; but you and the mom can figure that out through the placement tests and contacting the company.
For science, again; where was she in gov’t. school and how successfull was she? How much does the mom want to do? Book only or with computer or DVD’s? Even if she isn’t colloege-bound there are certain requirements for graduation in each state (what about a foreign language?). She needs to contact/become a member of HSLDA-I’ve linked you to the high school section for her so she can determine this info. My opinion is a more structured science for her at this level; besides, that’s what she’s used to, just more freedom for her pace and side interests. Plus, she can add in intersting scientist bios, intersting DVD’s, and living books. Some curricula that come to mind:
Apologia-more rigorous and for those that are science minded and college bound, generally; but that doesn’t mean she can’t do it. It now has instructional CD-ROM’S and audio book if she’s auditory, now.
Alpha Omega switched on schoolhouse comp. program, there’s also the lifepac.
Christian Liberty Press (straight textbook)
Biology 101-A DVD program that has received high praise on this forum where they add in living books.
The “By Design” Series of 4 books is a good supplement, too-Flood, Geology, Body and Universe
A living Periodic Table book may help her understand chemistry a little more: Elements of Faith
There are good living books for science at Yesterday’s Classics– as you scroll down, you can see the ages of some of the books offered on various subjects. These books are written at a higher reading level, so one written for a “14” yr. old, may fine for her.
This is all I know; I’m sure there are probably other’s with better experience in the high school area, esp. in transitioning, as I have no experience in that area. But definietly narrow down your options by her asking and answering some questions about how she wants to go about this, exampled above. She should keep in mind, that this may be a very hard year and probably next year will be different. Also, a Biblical study to begin to undo some of the affects of the culture and school would be warranted, if this lady is a Christian. Just an idea.
I think I like the Biology 101 option you posted. Living Books is the way I want to go with Science if at all possible.
My son uses Teaching Textbooks but I think it will be too rigorous for her. I may have understated her learning issues. She has an IEP at the public school and is taking “concept” math classes there as opposed to regular Algebra and Geometry classes. I think she has a lot of potential in the liberal arts type classes, but anything math/science related is going to be an issue. I don’t even know of a Math curriculum that exists for people like this. Is there one?
Bible is a definte must. I am actually going to major on it – wrapping it up in her history and lit as well as a formal Bible class. Her mom will be all over it and well able to take that on. I’m just lost with the more technical end, having never dealt with her issues before.
Thanks for all the links! I am going to look at them all more closely. You have saved me a ton of research and I thank you!!Sonya ShaferModerator
I wonder if Math-U-See would be helpful with her. Since it is skill-based, rather than grade-based, you could use the placement tests on their website to find out where she would need to start. And you and she could watch the videos together (as many times as necessary) and not move on until she can teach/narrate the concept at her own pace.
Another suggestion for science: I just started using The New Way Things Work with my third daughter for Physical Science. We’re adding in some videos and narrations and Book of Centuries entries, but a living book like that might also be interesting for her. Some other living book possibilities are listed on our Science Curriculum Guide page.kainklanMember
I would suggest looking into the Life of Fred for math… because these books are not cumbersome you can get through several books and play catch up so to speak, therefore the girl might not feel so behind in her math.. My personal feeling with the Math U See series is that although it has some good points, it begins from parts to whole , therefore they have conditioned you to work a problem one particular way and when they finally get to the shorter or more familiar way to work , a rut has been established and it can be very problematic to undo what you have spent time learning only to have to relearn it … Now having said that, the only problem I see with Life of Fred series is that they are presented in story form so to speak , not so much set up as math equations, which I believe the former is how math is presented to us on a daily basis. and that might take a little getting used to… For instance, you don’t go to the fabric store to buy fabric with a math equation all written out for you. You know that you may have to buy 1 1/2 yds of material for 1 outfit but you have twins so you need to make 2. therefore you have to double it., right. Or you might have to think a little, (not a bad thing) like a student was given the problem of 4/9 – 1/9 and wrote 3/9 the teacher marked it wrong, why? My daugh age 14, struggles with comprehension. I spent the last 4 yrs leaving behind all I knew about CM to address this in another way and MUS was one of the things we used in our curr. 4 yrs later we are no better off, Instead of tip-toeing around her issues, we should of kept going with all the invaluable knowledge we had come to understand and had worked with 4 other children , only to come to full circle to see CM can work with all learning diffabilities… We have a 7 yr old behind her, who has been diagnosed high functioning autistic, and we are gently introducing CM with him and I believe we will be in a better place than what we did with our daugh… I believe we were afraid when we heard that she had a learning problem and didn’t trust what we had come to know through the years… I am thankful God can and does redeem the years….
Thanks Sonya, I will look into that Science curriculum for sure. I had no idea there were so many good options! I quit looking when I found something that worked for me so I quickly became out of the loop.
KK, I have never heard of Life of Fred…thanks for the tip! I also loved what you said about tip-toeing around her issues. It confirmed for me what I think God is speaking to me – that I need to not just assume the labels placed on her are correct. I don’t think she’s ever been sufficiently challenged because I don’t think she’s ever been told she can learn. As you say, God redeems the years.
I am thankful for all the help. I feel in many ways like I am starting over!
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