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pexels-photo-267684When I started homeschooling, I’d taught lots of college math and science. I had no idea how people learned to read.  This was compounded by the fact that MoDG lesson plans are written for a VETERAN. So, here’s quick list of what you need to know.

  • Use 100EZ or another phonics-based reading curriculum.
    • Do the activities ~10 min day.
    • Don’t skip days just because the child is “ahead”.
    • Don’t let him work too long unless it’s your last assignment of the day.
    • At some point, reading stops being fun. “Cause I said so” will come. Don’t switch curriculum.
  • When the syllabus says “read an easy reader”, it means TEAM READING.
    • Pick something that the child will know at least ½ the words.
    • For words with advanced phonograms (“sight words”), just tell him what it is and remark that he’ll learn it later. He’ll likely memorize it just from the repetition with you.
    • If you run into new sounds that aren’t out of reach, but not yet taught, tell him what it is, sound out the word, and move on. For example, Bob Books introduce short e in the first few books. 100EZ doesn’t until Lesson 52. Short e isn’t hard. Tell him what it is. Prompt him along.
  • Little kids struggle with the writing component of most reading programs. 
    • As long as you’re doing the handwriting assignments in the syllabus, don’t force this.
    • Substitute sticky notes for the writing portion. We want to practice READING.
    • For “write the letter next to the pictures that start with ___” we often use star stickers.

stickies

We use Little Angel Readers, btw. Same idea though with any other program.

Here’s my basic K-2 plan

  • Take your time in KGRD.
  • Get serious in 1st.
  • Continue to Team Read daily that summer.
  • Read alone daily on grade level by the middle of 2nd.


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So often, the lesson plans assumed I already knew the content well enough to adapt the material for my child. In fact, I often didn’t know the content well enough to even understand the lesson plans AT ALL. Worse, in the very early grades and I didn’t know what I didn’t know.  I didn’t know what a fact family or a sight word even was, much less notice their conspicuous absence from the lesson plans. Anyone else?

It got even worse for me in Latin and 6GRD Voyages. I remembered NONE of that from school.

Laura remarks in her book (or article?) that when she went to college she had no idea what a direct object was either. We all say ME TOO! But, by the time she was teaching her own children, she totally knew what it was.

I’d like to create some way to help mom’s find and close the knowledge gaps before they get in over their heads. I don’t have any ideas on how to “detect” the gap yet, but I did make a grammar refresher for Beginning Latin I that seemed to help a friend of mine. I posted it below.

Let me know what other primers we need. Let’s help other moms have an easier time than we did. It’s been SO LONG, though, I can’t remember what I didn’t know!  Help me out. Make suggestions!  What “catch-up” options and subjects would have made your life easier?

primerEnglishGrammarBeginningLatin



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Rules and Phonograms Printables

3GRD

I find the WRTR book cumbersome. Here are some printables that you can put in yours or your child’s notebook for reference. Oh, and a set of the phonograms cards. Spalding phonogram cards Single page Spalding Rules and helpful stuff Single page Spalding Phonograms for reference

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Printable Catechism Questions

2GRD

Need all of the year’s catechism questions on one sheet?  Here you go. Note, 5GRD assignments are out of order, but the printable questions are in order. I highlight which ones we’ve covered as we go. 2GRD 3GRD 4GRD 5GRD 6GRD   

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Beginning Latin I & II: Teacher’s Helpers

By Book

Beginning Latin 1 Helper pdf BeginningLatin II Helper pdf BLII Cheat Sheet & BLI pdf  and EXCEL This post has two printables: Teacher’s Helper and Cheat Sheet. Above you see a sample of the cheat sheet for BLII. I can’t spell stereotype, apparently. Rather than correct it, I gave you the excel version too. Another note, as you progress in […]

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Latin Hack 3: Prepositions

Hayden Latin

Prepositions.  We just memorize the Ablative ones.  The rest are accusative. Here’s the memory device: In Grammy’s downstairs closet is a body builder in a speedo.  We see his ABS. He’s going to demonstrate the ablative prepositions. He’s IN the closet Then he’s OUT OF the closet. Then he’s BY the chair that sits outside […]

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Latin Hack 2: Gender & i-stems

Hayden Latin

Once the kids are acquainted with the basic charts, the workbooks move on to irregulars. For this, we use targeted memory tricks.  We find that having the accumulated irregular gender nouns, i-stems, and ablative prepositions memorized is super-helpful. My kids can’t reason it out every time. We learn the reasons, but we don’t USE them […]

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Latin Hack 1: Charts

Hayden Latin

My kids do great with vocabulary, but they have a hard time USING Latin rules. Over time, we’ve changed translating into a more concrete decoder-ring type experience. We still learn the rules and how to find verb stems, but we don’t really USE that to conjugate. First, we learn the “-ere Chart”: Every verb has 3 parts: […]

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KGRD Abeka Math Drill Plan

Abeka Math

Why Drill? Abeka 1, 2, and 3 are ADVANCED.  Also, since we don’t usually buy the teacher’s manual, we miss out on all the DRILL Abeka expects.  If you use our Saxon alternative syllabus, you DO use the teacher’s manual.  I thought that meant that Abeka accomplished in a workbook what Saxon did with a […]

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KGRD Read Aloud Schedules

Philosophy

KGRD Booklist KGRD Supplementary Book List KGRD Read aloud schedule

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Latin Hacks: Verbs

Latin

I stumbled upon a “hack” while teaching my kids that I just have to share.  It may not continue to be useful, but it’s been super-helpful so far. I tell them that every Latin verb has three parts:  what, when, and who. It’s exactly backwards from how we would say it in English. “He will […]

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My WRTR Happy Place (So far)

3GRD

I have STRUGGLERS in spelling.  Every year, we really need to reboot WRTR from the very beginning and find the holes that appeared during the summer.  WRTR has always been hard in this department.  Weeks of dictation!  This method I’m using (six weeks in) is GREAT for us so far.  I wanted to go ahead […]

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Mom-Formation Recommendations

Philosophy

I want to give my kids a classical education.  I know it consists of certain assignments and exercises.  But, if I don’t have actual knowledge about what I am doing or how it all fits together, how can I honesty persuade my child of an exercise’s importance?  “Do this it this way.”  “Why?”  “Cause the school […]

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Ancient History at a Glance

6GRD

Most ancient history timelines online are TOO complicated for me.  I just want to know what’s happening in Egypt while Greece is doing such-and-such. So I built one.    I put it below my beloved clothes pin timeline of centuries (empty and ready for a new year of clothes pins!) so you can see the size […]

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Free-Reading Resources

All Printables

Finding a list of books that fits your value system is difficult.  Then, you have to worry about reading level.  The following lists are compiled from lots of folks “good stuff” lists and organized by author and then by reading level.  Some lists are first organized by author, so scroll down and the list will […]

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4GRD Maps and Keys-ish

4GRD

A commenter asked me for USA map keys today.  I never realized that I didn’t post those.  I totally take requests, yo! All of the d-maps should be traceable on top of each other so you can get rivers in with the states, etc.  I couldn’t find a d-map with mountains, so I pulled it […]

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Digital Flashcards: Latin, Geography, Phonograms

3GRD

Have you heard of “spaced repetition”?  It’s practicing words you don’t know at intervals.  I made decks for Beginning Latin I, II, and Fundamentals I on memrise.com.  The advantage of that site is that the material is cumulative and you have control over adding new words.  The child can practice daily, only the words he […]

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Wordly Wise 5 Spalding Key

8GRD

If you used WRTR in the earlier grades, the Spalding markings can be used for the rest of the school career.  MoDG has you do it in 8GRD, if you know it.  Here’s our key for it, to the best of my ability.  A few words I couldn’t figure out. WW5a key WW5b key Also, you need […]

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8GRD Outline Maps

8GRD

Is it just me or are these maps a HASSLE?  I had no idea I knew so little about geography!  So, here’s the 8grd Europe map key and blank.  Also is a link to my google drive to get ALL of the outline maps for the Ultimate Guide mapping for the rest of the year. […]

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8GRD Timeline!

8GRD

In past years, we did our timeline work up front.  THAT WAS HARD!   Here’s the figures and timeline placement for 8GRD, but they’re BY WEEK this time.  Whew!  Each figure is scheduled on the first week you hear about them in either Story of the Church or Old World and America. 8grd timeline figures 8GRD timeline […]

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