Track A or B for Grade 3

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  • Jamie

    My DS will be entering grade 3 come the next school year.  I’m struggling to figure where he should be for Individual Studies 3.  I figure he can just read the first pages to me and see by how he reads what would be the best fit.  I want to do Hymns and Prose, especially because I love that it comes with a teacher’s book.  I need the open-and-go/less planning in this season of our family life… but we haven’t finished Busy Times yet.

    Back story… we were taking our time with Busy Times as a fun read because we decided Learning Language Arts Through Literature for 2nd grade.  LLATL has its own reading books and that’s what we were learning our phonics and reading from.  Plus, I didn’t want to overdo the reading aloud to me because DS sometimes dreads doing that, too.  Anyways, I hate LLATL, lol… and my son isn’t too fond of it either.  But we paid for it so I feel we need to just finish it.

    With all that info, and probably more than you need to know, lol…

    How did you decide which track to use?  Is the difficulty that different between tracks?  Did you add the Pathway Reader workbooks if you followed track A?  Is it okay to skip readers in the Pathway series, or is it recommended to read one to the next in the series as not too miss out on anything new that needs to be learned?

    I almost feel like we lost an entire school year in phonics and reading because we decided to do something we wound up not liking.  DS is reading decently, but I think we can do better.

    And one more thing… my son will be completing Print to Cursive this year (he was able to read most of the words in this book and learned some new ones).  Can I do Pathway if we decide that route along with Hymns and Prose copywork, or is it recommended to do the Hymns and Prose copywork along with the Hymns and Prose reader?

    Tamara Bell

    Hi Jamie!
    Hymns in Prose is a lovely resource that is written at a late 3rd grade/early 4th grade level.  Some families like to utilize only the reader for practice and the copywork book for copywork however other families feel their child need a little bit longer with guided lessons.  For those families, we have the additional Teacher’s Guide.

    I’m going to link a sample for New Friends (Pathway reader used in track A) for you to utilize as a bit of a placement guide for your son.  Can he read each page fairly well with only a few unfamiliar words or does he struggle with quite a few words?  If the latter, it will be best for him to continue on the track he is currently (moving to More Busy Times and then New Friends).  If he is reading the sample of New Friends fairly well, you can definitely consider utilizing Track B’s Hymns in Prose.

    We (SCM) do not recommend the workbooks.  They are not necessary and do not lend themselves well to Charlotte’s method.

    If after looking at the sample of New Friends you believe your son will be best served following track A, I would encourage you to look through the sample of the copywork book.  You do not want him to struggle with what he is reading for copywork since that time is the time used for his spelling lesson.  He needs to be able to read what he is copying in order to learn to spell well.


    Hi Tamara,

    Thank you so much for your response!

    I think that is why we didn’t like LLATL.  It claims to have some CM to it, but not what I was looking for for DS.  I want to follow the CM method as best as I can with help in the planning.  I was disappointed with it.

    And that’s what I figure with the workbooks.  More twaddle and fill-in-the-blanks is what it looked like.

    I also don’t want to give DS the Prose copywork if he can’t read some of the words in it yet.  Then I defeat the main purpose of copywork in the first place in order to learn how to transcribe.  We both really enjoyed doing the Print to Cursive.  Do you have any other recommendations for a CM style cursive copywork book or something we can use to continue if we don’t use Prose?  Maybe I gave PTC to him to soon?  He was so ready to write in cursive.  And he is now doing beautifully.  I had mentioned he was able to read most of the words or sound some out with no problem.  And he learned new ones in the process.

    I’ll try that sample for sure!  That should definitely answer which track we should follow then.  Thank you so much for your help!


    Tamara Bell

    Definitely check out the samples.

    If you find Hymns in Prose is too advanced, then you can create your own copywork for him by assigning him Scripture, poetry, or a sentence/passage from his school books.  🙂


    Yeah, that’s what I’m thinking.  There are tons of options!  I can even just simply take sentences out of the Pathway readers, write them in cursive and have him practice.

    Easy peasy!  😉  Thank you again!


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