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Old 10-09-2012, 08:05 AM   #1
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Can someone give me some advice?

Just to get it out of the way - I guess we're not "TRULY" homeschooling - we're doing virtual school So public school curriculum, with a public school teacher online and we just complete it all at home.

So far I really like it, because I know she isn't falling behind academically, I don't have to worry if she's meeting state standards, and I have all the curriculum ready for me, organized into lessons for each day that I just complete with her and then check off when we're done. I'm not the best at organization, and I get frustrated quickly, so this method is good for me. I feel like it makes teaching her at home "idiot proof" KWIM?

.... Except I feel some of it is kind of over the top. Like, they have my Kindergarten DD doing planning, a rough draft, and a final copy every couple of weeks, which to me is a LOT to ask of a 5 y/o....

And some of the lessons I think are stupid, or just pointless. Like, they have her in keyboarding. She has to sit in front of the computer and practice typing for 30 mins, with her fingers on the home keys. I think typing is a useful skill, but not for a 5 y/o. And her attention span is just not that long to sit and punch letters on a keyboard, holding her fingers a certain way for such a long time. I could see some sort of "computer game" type thing to INTRODUCE her to using a keyboard properly, but it is literally a string of letters and she has to sit and type type type type, with her fingers on home keys. It's boring to watch and it's like torture trying to get her to do it.

Or, sometimes the lessons are just discussions. Recently, they have us discussing "stranger danger" for THREE days! My kids already know about stranger danger, and going on and on about it for 3 days is just kind of a bit much, and fear mongering, too, IMO.

What do I do about this? I am really uncomfortable switching to a different method right now. I want to finish out the year at least.

But I'm having trouble keeping her motivated, I'm having trouble getting motivated myself, and I'm really scared to try something that would be easier to fail at.

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Old 10-09-2012, 08:16 AM   #2
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Re: Can someone give me some advice?

I think it sounds like a nice way to handle the planning of homeschool, but also it seems like you should be able to use your own judgment, to a degree, to choose the importance of some lessons over others rather than take them literally. I think 30 minutes of real keyboard typing is ridiculous at age five, unless she loved it

If it were me, I'd finish out the year but I would let my own perspective help determine just how much I wanted to devote to certain lessons
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Old 10-09-2012, 08:19 AM   #3
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That seems a bit excessive to me. Do you have any freedom to change things up at all or do you have to comply completely with what they give you? I've never done virtual schooling so I don't know about the particulars. Is this what kids do in public school?
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Old 10-09-2012, 08:22 AM   #4
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Re: Can someone give me some advice?

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Originally Posted by boysniris View Post
I think it sounds like a nice way to handle the planning of homeschool, but also it seems like you should be able to use your own judgment, to a degree, to choose the importance of some lessons over others rather than take them literally. I think 30 minutes of real keyboard typing is ridiculous at age five, unless she loved it

If it were me, I'd finish out the year but I would let my own perspective help determine just how much I wanted to devote to certain lessons
I'm kind of thinking this is what I will do, but I just kind of feel guilty about it, I guess.

For example, yesterday she had FOUR pages of coloring worksheets. She was ready to quit coloring after one page. It was a LOT to color. So I only made her do 2 of them, thinking we'd do the other 2 this morning. Well, she woke up early and used her safety scissors to cut out some of the pictures on them and glue them to construction paper. Cute, but... obviously she will never complete those the way she was supposed to. whoops.
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Old 10-09-2012, 08:24 AM   #5
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Re: Can someone give me some advice?

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That seems a bit excessive to me. Do you have any freedom to change things up at all or do you have to comply completely with what they give you? I've never done virtual schooling so I don't know about the particulars. Is this what kids do in public school?
It is supposedly the exact same curriculum they are using in public school, but I am having a really hard time believing that. It is really involved... which is fine, I WANT to be involved in it otherwise I wouldn't have chosen it - but I can't see a PS teacher with 30+ students (that is typical class size here) doing this much work with every student everyday. KWIM?

No, there is no room for flexibility, we are supposed to complete all the lessons as they appear and follow the instructions to a "T".
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Old 10-09-2012, 10:31 AM   #6
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Re: Can someone give me some advice?

What happens if you don't follow the directions to a T? Like the coloring thing...do you have to turn those all in to be graded? If you didn't, I would just make sure she knows the material and then move on. Like with the stranger danger thing, just review what you guys had already talked about and make sure you cover the points, and do something else on the other two days. TBH, I'm not really sure how that works though, since you're set up through the public school. In the future you might want to look into a complete homeschooling kit--it will have all the lesson plans and everything for you, but of course you get to decide what to do and not do and you would have a lot more freedom to decide what's right for your family.
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Old 10-09-2012, 10:42 AM   #7
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Re: Can someone give me some advice?

Hello there Kiliki!

I completely agree w/ you about how the cyber school curriculums are over the top. They are more advanced than the brick and mortar public school.

We lived in PA, a state which offers free cyber charter schools and I am SO, SO glad I didn't know about it until after I decided to start homeschooling on my own. I can't imagine having such little say in what I want to do w/ my child. I realize cyber schools work great for some families but I recognize I am not one of those people.

See if you can stick it out for the rest of the yr. because it might be a bit of change to switch now (although it's totally possible and you and DD might be happier). I know there are only certain things which have to be turned in so don't worry about not doing it all. They won't even notice w/ somethings. Try to see what you can do to make this work.

Best wishes and keep us posted!
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Old 10-09-2012, 10:57 AM   #8
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Re: Can someone give me some advice?

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Originally Posted by jen_batten View Post
What happens if you don't follow the directions to a T? Like the coloring thing...do you have to turn those all in to be graded? If you didn't, I would just make sure she knows the material and then move on. Like with the stranger danger thing, just review what you guys had already talked about and make sure you cover the points, and do something else on the other two days. TBH, I'm not really sure how that works though, since you're set up through the public school. In the future you might want to look into a complete homeschooling kit--it will have all the lesson plans and everything for you, but of course you get to decide what to do and not do and you would have a lot more freedom to decide what's right for your family.
They don't actually KNOW if you don't do everything EXACTLY, but you are supposed to. I kind of feel like I'm cheating the system or something.

I am going to skip the last 2 days of stranger danger b/c I think 3 days of it is excessive. I am also letting her just do a smaller amount of keyboarding. Like today I only made her do 10 mins.

We just submitted one of her big writing assignments - about what she wore that day, so one long sentence ("I am wearing a pink shirt and a black hello kitty skirt with dark pink socks and silver shoes") - she did a planning page, TWO rough drafts, a final copy and then also a graph, and the teacher is asking me "where is her drawing for this assignment?" Maybe I'm the one who's wrong, but seriously? She wrote SO MUCH and you're complaining over her not drawing it? Oy.

Anyways, thanks for all the perspectives. We'll just keep plugging away but I do think I might trim a little here and there that I think is excessive or unnecessary, and stick to the core concepts to be sure she's got those down.
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Old 10-09-2012, 11:39 AM   #9
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Re: Can someone give me some advice?

I cannot IMAGINE a 5 year old being expected to write ANYTHING. My 1st grader is still learning to write.
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Old 10-09-2012, 01:47 PM   #10
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Re: Can someone give me some advice?

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I cannot IMAGINE a 5 year old being expected to write ANYTHING. My 1st grader is still learning to write.
I agree it's a lot.

Here is a copy of her most recent assignment:



She wrote that whole thing 3 times. And had to do a planning paper (word web) before starting, and also a graph (chart?) type thing for the reading assignment from that day...

Last edited by Kiliki; 10-09-2012 at 01:50 PM.
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