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(c) Southwark Art Collection; Supplied by The Public Catalogue Foundation

I really liked the curriculum this year.  As I get further up in MODG, I find less and less I want to change.  It’s the early grades I dabble around in.

3GRD

I need to remediate some reading issues, so I used an alternative to WRTR and PLL.

Rather than the speed drills, I did his math facts through Reflex Math online.  To make the multiplication facts (and states’ capitals) stick, we used the Memory Joggers cards again.  I used the Abeka concept flashcards and teacher’s manual to order math review outside of the usual fact families (quarts, miles, all that).

I definitely used my English from the Roots Up picture cards and Date cards.  It allowed him to practice and check his work independently.  We used the date cards orient him on anything else we were talking about.  “Was this painted before or after the pilgrims came?”  He also really enjoyed using the syllabus-recommended Sheppard’s Software games to review states and capitals.

5GRD

Again, for remediation (dyslexia) we modified the spelling and Language Arts and science.  WOW, is dyslexia a big deal when you find it late!

We very much enjoyed the religion discussions, though we rarely used the Activity book.

As usual, we loved poetry.  We replace “O Captain My Captain” with the Magnificat.  We just don’t like it.

History “living books” were great, but as usual, we got really bogged down in Pioneers and Patriots after the Revolution.  Blech.

We have the same problem in geography.  All of that mapping is fine, but somewhere in Asia, we wear out.  Rather than bailing on it entirely, this year I varied the activities.  Africa just wasn’t going to happen otherwise.  We also had similar issues with the continent statistics.  This year, it just worked best to list them in order, rather than retaining the actual numbers.  “Name the continents we’ve covered in order of size.  Now do it in backwards order of population.  Now in order of mountain height.  Which continent has Mt. Elbrus?”

Latin is difficult for her, but at least it’s concrete and the pronunciations don’t change.

Music was pleasant, but she wasn’t thrilled with art until the drawing was over.  She was sick of McIntyre at the end of last year.  She’s my artist!  I need to do something differently.

6GRD

I really like 6GRD, but it’s intensive for the mom’s brain first year, not her schedule, like 3GRD, but her BRAIN.  You have to come up with the right maps for geography.  You have to figure out the timeline.

Also, without the Language Arts Overview from the school, the “write a paper about Egypt” is a mystery.  Also a mystery to me, HOW TO WRITE A SUMMARY.  I think he’d written 10 summaries from the book of Luke before I learned how to have him do it.  I am a WRITER, for heaven’s sake.  I still didn’t know how it was different from a retelling.  Get the Language Arts Overview from the school.  Super-helpful.

We used Voyages in English 6 and there’s quite a bit of unexplained outlining for Mom to figure out too.  And lemme just say, I was NOT prepared for Latina Christiana II.  I learned a LOT this year.  WHEW!   If you have one of these coming up, you have a lot to do beforehand.  I’ll post what I have soon, so maybe it won’t be SO much work.

Editing was a breeze.  Editor in Chief was a great text for that.  Music was really fun, though some of the needed performances were not in the booklist.  You need to find Pirates of Penzance and The Mikado.  My kids really liked them.  Art…that calligraphy book was not great.  I will be substituting something else next year.  Blech.

 

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not 162

This year is almost over.  It’s time for planning next year.  To that end, I will be refining and re-posting all of the do-ahead material.  I’ll try to make sure everything is complete.  But this post is about looking back.  What did I love?  What didn’t go well?  What do I wish I’d done differently?

Schedule

First, I would like to say that our family schedule really settled in this year and I loved it.  Every morning, the kids got up and did their chores.  This happened early and automatically, because the use of screens is directly tied to it. School starts promptly at 10, so if you don’t get up, get ready, and do your stuff, there will be no screen-time before school.  Totally bums them out.  They even set alarms.  Tee-hee.

MODG curriculum assumes certain family HABITS that are not real in my home.  All of that casual fiction reading, listening, and beautiful classical music is not something that happens after 3PM in my home.  So, this year we scheduled it in.  The recommendations are for, like, an HOUR each, but we aren’t there yet.  We go for 30 minutes each.:

  • The first session in the morning is “whittling and beautiful music.”  I have a youtube list that they shuffle each day and they sit out in the garage and carve stuff for 30 minutes while they listen.
  • The second session is “listening and walking.”  We have the benefit of learningally.com subscription that means almost everything we have for history is on audio.  If that is not the case, I choose some worthwhile audio fiction, generally from the 2GRD or 3GRD booklists.
  • The third session is “eyeball reading.”  For my dyslexic child, it’s online leveled science reading and comprehension.  For my 3GRD kid, it’s easy readers or reading his science text aloud to me.  For 6GRD kid, it’s some saint book or worthy fiction.

“Formal” school time starts around 11:30.  We still do about 30 minute sessions:

  • First we do “math.”  30 minutes together in the living room.  That allows for me to answer questions and verify that everyone stays on task.
  • Second is “memory.”  Often, the big kids are still working on math, but we start taking time out to recite poems or geography info.  Whoever isn’t reciting is going through their Latin cards, doing states and dates work, sight words, what-have-you.  We do catechism together.  I don’t keep them strictly separate.  We pick one child’s review work and do it together.  The favorite exercise lately is for Mom to say the answer wrong and the kids to correct me.  It’s amazing how fun it is when important words are replaced with “hot dogs.”

Next is “Rotation” time.

  • One child has my full attention and the others have alone work, lunch, etc.  For about 30 minutes each, I work with each child on whatever he needs.  That might be Latin work or a religion discussion or art.  I shift around the weekly assignments if we run out of time.
  • Other kids are doing “alone work” or taking a break.  Each child knows what is his alone work and his Mama work.

From start to finish, it’s about 10AM-2:30PM.

What Would I Change?

In past years, I spent daily time reading aloud to the group.  I would like to bring back a daily devotional reading time when I read the saint picture books or a chapter from a longer book.  I’m happy having the fiction on audio.  I’m not inspired to take another chunk out of the day for that, but I would definitely do it for Jesus.

 

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1GRD Concrete Results

1st

Since I made lots of comments in KGRD, this will be more of a list.  If you follow the lesson plans as written, this is what you get (in my experience): Music: Your child will be able to sing along with 6 different classic hymns.  Three hymns, he will know in Latin and English.  One, […]

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Kindergarten Concrete Results

By Grade

The school has their own methodology and skill goals, but I tend to want a bird’s eye “this is what he will know” concrete content list for each grade.  So, that’s what I’m writing here.  If you follow the lesson plans as written, this is what you get (in my experience): Music: Your child will […]

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The 10-Week Super Set-Up

Do-Aheads

  We have had some special this year, so I had to get as set up as possible.  Below you see two CT scans, one of a normal nasal pathway, looking down from above on the cheek bones.  All the white is bone.  Notice on the left, that the bones leave plenty of room upfront […]

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6GRD Egypt Mapping

6th

I about lost my mind trying to find the cities and cataracts and lakes for this map.  It might not be 100% right, but it’s pretty darn close. Print out my labels from THIS POST.  Print out six copies of the blank map below.  Print out one copy of the labelled map above for placement […]

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5GRD-6GRD Mapping Labels

5th

My kids CANNOT seem to write small enough or neatly enough to read the maps once they’ve been labelled. So, I grabbed my pack of labels (10/sheet mailing labels) and made printables for them. For 5GRD, each label is the stuff the child has to write names, numbers, and letters for that week. For sixth, […]

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6GRD Timeline? YIKES! Detailed Instructions…

6th

I have been fooling with this timeline for days. I thought I just needed the figures I posted, but NO. It’s still not nailed down enough for me. So here’s my version using the 92-page book: DAY ONE 1.  Set up your book like I did in this post. –Print out the Egypt images. –Print […]

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Updates to Freebies!

My Printables

I simplified the 4-5GRD cut and paste timeline HERE  and HERE. I put in printable 5×7 pdfs of COLOR images for PLL and ILL.

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Timeline Figures for 6GRD

6th

Download the images you want and print them all at the same time on the “contact paper” setting on your printer, or whichever one has the 32 images per page on your printer…if you want them to be the same size as my other ones.  OR, just download this: Egypt timeline figures (has a couple […]

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