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    6th Grade time to complete

    My daughter in 6M is doing school work for about 6 hours a day now. We have not even started with Latin or Writing, so this is just the rest of the curriculum and our math. She is doing 2 Famous Men courses, but that is the only addition. We are both exhausted! I have to help her all of the time, and my special needs kid is basically being left on her own to play with dogs, scooter around the neighborhood, chase moose, and do a maximum 1 hour a day of phonics with me. We cannot continue like this. The older child is not stupid. She is a great reader and really quite intelligent. She takes a bit more than an hour a day for math, but the rest is just reviewing flash cards, trying to memorize things, and doing the work that MP lays out in the student guide. Spelling takes us 45 minutes a day, for goodness sake, since we have not used Spelling Workout before. I have told her we probably have to stop discussing the literature questions every day, and that the read-aloud (currently Oliver Twist) may have to be independent reading before bed with no discussion at all. Perhaps we should drop Birds since on that day of the week it takes an hour since she has to color the birds to match and answer all of the questions. Famous Men of the Middle Ages did not have us do the whole introduction, so I added it in since she has not learned all of the Germanic myths, and that added some time these past few weeks, but I did not want her to start the course off without the intro. We will have the extra Famous Men of Rome, but other than that, which has not been a time consumer, the stuff takes forever! Memorizing all of the sovereigns of England in verse plus the Magnificat, and reviewing all of the memory verses from prior years of Christian studies is a lot of time, too. Perhaps stop memorizing the sovereigns?How much time is it supposed to take to do 6M?
    JeJe Greer
    Mom to:
    Stella 9th grade with half MP and half Schole Academy classes
    Clara (Combination of SC 5/6 and 4th New User)

    #2
    Re: 6th Grade time to complete

    Caveat: This is advice for Jeje's specific situation and her need to streamline. The advice would not be the same to someone else in a different situation.

    First tip is to do Oliver Twist as an audio book in the car or at night--take that out of your day right away to save mom-time.

    Only one Famous Men book is enough for now. If you want her to do a second, then maybe make that a read aloud over the summer. No need to complete two guides. In the guides--is she answering all of the questions? If yes, cut that back to about the most important 3 or so per lesson (you can look ahead to the test to find these). Middles Ages has more lessons than you can do in one year which is why they skip the beginning. If you've already done it, then that's done, but know you can start right at the beginning as recommended in the plans. These books aren't cumulative, they can be mixed around. Librivox has recordings on them for free online as well if you want her to listen.

    The literature--discuss what you can, but she is probably old enough to complete it on her own. She can complete the guide (again, not all answers are necessary) and you can check her answers. If she's having the Delectare discussion, then just have her complete the guide and check her work. You don't have to discuss this as well. It's nice to do, but many of us teaching multiple kids don't have time to do what you are attempting with that. I would not worry about the verses from previous years. Just read through them and let it be enough.

    It sounds like it would be helpful to figure out what she can do on her own (tasks within subjects) so that she can work independently while you work with your other child.

    Spelling should definitely not take that long, especially daily--some shortcuts: skip the opening page where all the words are used in context (if she's familiar with the words already), then skip the last page where they have the writing/editing assignment. Just do the straight-up spelling work on the two facing pages and write the words 1x/day for three days. Test on Friday. Oral is fine.

    For birds, memorize them by the photo flash cards and skip the coloring.

    For Bible Verses: study and savor them all, but only memorize the most important. We do not memorize all the Bible verses because we have other Bible things going on in our family. It's ok. We learn what we can, but we can't learn them all.

    For England's Sovereigns--do what you can.

    Does any of this help?
    Festina lentē,
    Jessica P

    '22-'23 • 13th year HSing • 11th year MP
    DS Hillsdale College freshman
    DD 11th • HLN & Latin online
    DD 8th • HLN & Home
    DS 5th • HLN & Home
    Me • Memoria College, MPOA Fourth Form for Adults

    Teaching Third Form Latin and co-directing @
    Highlands Latin Nashville Cottage School, est. 2016

    Comment


      #3
      Re: 6th Grade time to complete

      Originally posted by jejegreer View Post
      My daughter in 6M is doing school work for about 6 hours a day now. We have not even started with Latin or Writing, so this is just the rest of the curriculum and our math. She is doing 2 Famous Men courses, but that is the only addition. We are both exhausted! I have to help her all of the time, and my special needs kid is basically being left on her own to play with dogs, scooter around the neighborhood, chase moose, and do a maximum 1 hour a day of phonics with me. We cannot continue like this. The older child is not stupid. She is a great reader and really quite intelligent. She takes a bit more than an hour a day for math, but the rest is just reviewing flash cards, trying to memorize things, and doing the work that MP lays out in the student guide. Spelling takes us 45 minutes a day, for goodness sake, since we have not used Spelling Workout before. I have told her we probably have to stop discussing the literature questions every day, and that the read-aloud (currently Oliver Twist) may have to be independent reading before bed with no discussion at all. Perhaps we should drop Birds since on that day of the week it takes an hour since she has to color the birds to match and answer all of the questions. Famous Men of the Middle Ages did not have us do the whole introduction, so I added it in since she has not learned all of the Germanic myths, and that added some time these past few weeks, but I did not want her to start the course off without the intro. We will have the extra Famous Men of Rome, but other than that, which has not been a time consumer, the stuff takes forever! Memorizing all of the sovereigns of England in verse plus the Magnificat, and reviewing all of the memory verses from prior years of Christian studies is a lot of time, too. Perhaps stop memorizing the sovereigns?How much time is it supposed to take to do 6M?
      Jeje,

      When my son did 6M two years ago, I don’t remember it taking 6 hours. I usually cut math off before the hour mark. I know we did not go back and memorize all the Christian Studies verses from years we didn’t do - mutiny would have ensued if I insisted on that. We did Christian Studies out loud as a family. Just drill questions, no written tests. Spelling took about 20-30 minutes because I pretty much handed him the book. He did one page, copied his words, and had a quiz on Friday. I never bought the TM so maybe there were things I missed. I would skip the second famous men book. One could be saved for summer reading. My oldest never did FMOR and has done fine with seeing it the first time in Book of the Ancient Romans. FMMA also fell off the plate for her on our first year of MP. My son didn’t really use the flash cards for FMMA and just ran through the drill questions once each week. By the end of the year he knew it pretty well. I circled one short answer each week to write out completely (I always included ones that would be on the test since I figured those were the most important). I made the tests open book and skipped the review lessons.. I don’t give the literature tests at that age. I picked one or two questions to write out answers. I consider Latin and Math to be the subjects that I take the time to ensure mastery.
      Dorinda

      Plans for 2021-2022
      15th year homeschooling, 12th year with Memoria Press
      DD College Freshman
      DS 10th grade - Lukeion Latin and Greek, Vita Beata Greek Dramas
      DS 8th grade - Vita Beata Literature
      DS 3rd grade - Vita Beata Literature, Right Start F, First Form Latin

      Comment


        #4
        Re: 6th Grade time to complete

        Jessica gives a good plan.

        A couple of things come to mind that are similar to what she already said:

        I would say do only one Famous Men book.

        Literature, see if it would work to talk about the books a little more organically around the dinner table as a family. Check the written answers for completeness during school, and discuss anything that seems to be going over her head, but with Delectare and maybe a little family discussion at times when it works, you have her thinking about the books and "living" in those worlds and she will get a lot out of them.

        Spelling. Mondays they like to read the little blurb because it's interesting, then they read the tip, then they write the words once, then I go through the list words to make sure they actually know how to say them correctly and what they mean. This is, all told, about 20 minutes max. Tuesdays they do the two facing workbook pages, but NOT the back page of editing. This can take up to 30 minutes, but it's our "long" spelling day. It's independent work, for the most part unless they get stuck on a question. Wednesday and Thursday they write the words once (5-10 minutes). Friday is the test (10 minutes).

        For us, read aloud is on audio book, we don't really discuss it, it's just for enjoyment. We didn't get to a chapter today, but tomorrow we have a long-ish drive, so we'll probably listen to a couple in the car. We kind of catch-as-catch-can and generally don't fit in all the books for the year, but for me, I love having the suggestions for what to do because otherwise I probably wouldn't do it and they get in extra quality lit this way.

        Also, just don't feel pressured (easier said that done!). As far as I know, the teachers at HLS don't get to every single question every day plus all the discussion questions plus enrichment, etc. The tests show you what's important to learn going forward. You can't possibly get to everything every day. You definitely can't do everything and feel like you need to double up on some things to "catch up". Even if you don't get everything, what you get will be better than good. It's meaty stuff! You can't do everything, especially with other kids around. You do what you deem is most important. Use the CG and the student guides as tools and not as slave masters.

        For us, it is 4th grade that is taking the longest and drawing out to what I think is just an inordinate amount of time. But we just keep plodding and I take things off his (and my!) plate as necessary, especially when I can see him working hard and getting the essentials out of the reading. Hope this helps!
        Jodi
        ~~~~~~~
        2019-20 School Year:
        Ethan (7A)
        Matthew (5A)
        Silas (1st)
        Eleanor (4yo dabbling in PK as time allows)
        Andrew (brand new as of Oct 2019)

        Comment


          #5
          Re: 6th Grade time to complete

          Sometimes it's helpful to see another user's schedule. At least, it is *for me*. I love, love, love to get a glimpse into others' school days.


          Here's what my 6M kid's day looks like. He works for 6.5 hours a day, but that is because I allow him to set his own pace. My own involvement is about 3.5 hours.


          We are both early risers, so although I will show the times, you can adjust to your preferred start time


          7 am: He starts without me for independent work: Religion (we're Catholic), spelling, grammar, Literature. Yes, he can complete this in one hour.

          8 am: Mom time. I do a 45 min Religion lesson with him, but then we do roll Christian Studies into this also. If you aren't doing a dedicated Religion session in your home, then you can cut an hour from my son's 6.5 hour day!

          8:45 am: Mom time continues. At the table, I go over his Latin (plus flash cards plus Latin recitation), we grade and drill grammar, grade the day's Literature, and read through math together. I am "caught up" on all of his discussion and grading at this point, except for math. I work with him for a solid 90 mins, but I've covered A LOT.

          9:30 am: Independent work. Child completed Latin, math, and has a snack.

          10:30 am: Geography/drill and FMMA (Mom Time)- we cover these two subjects in mini sessions throughout the week rather than one large class.

          11:00 am: composition (Mom Time for part)

          11:30 am: LUNCH (and here is where we spoil ourselves. We take an hour for lunch!)

          12:30 pm: Memory work (Recitation), Bookshark history (Mom Time)

          1:30 pm: Elemental Science (15 mins 4 days per week) (Occasionally Mom Time, but often it is not)

          1:45 pm: Child has a few independent items to complete, like piano practice, walking the dog, and reading from a reader, but from this time on, he has completed his school work for the day. I allow him to complete the independent work at his own pace, but he must complete all of his tasks by 4:30pm each day.






          Jen
          DS, 28 yrs, graduated from MIT (Aerospace)

          DS, 26 yrs, graduated from SIU's School of Business, ENGAGED!

          DD, 23 yrs, graduated from The Catholic University of America in Washington, DC; 2nd grade teacher.

          DS, 13 yrs, 9th grade; attends a private classical school, 7th - 12th.

          All homeschooled for some/all of their K-12 education.

          Me: retired after 16 years of continuous homeschooling, now a high school chemistry teacher at a large Catholic high school

          Comment


            #6
            Re: 6th Grade time to complete

            JeJe,

            You have had so many great responses from very experienced MP users who have given you great suggestions of how they each make the curriculum work in their own homes. As you can see, each of them has tailored the curriculum to work in their own, particular situations. I think that is the key point to take from each of them, and is what I want to highlight for you.

            I give you a lot of credit for starting out with the full core and diving in to try it all. As you are realizing, there is a learning curve to using MP both for you and for your children. The suggestions of what other people do to save time are helpful in giving you ideas to shorten your time on different subjects. But what I want to encourage you to do is to start with one subject at a time and think carefully about how you want to handle it with your daughter. Having the plans in front of you, plus the teaching guidelines in the guides, and the curriculum manual, gives you the "MP WAY". What you need to do is to adjust that to find the "JEJE WAY." That is what each of us has done, and is what folks are sharing with you, but yours will inevitably look different because you and your children are different from everyone else, too.

            Another word of advice I will offer is that you are realizing something very important by what you are experiencing in these early weeks: having a bright, intelligent child is different from having a child with very strong skills in every area of their school work. What the suggestions from MP can do is to help you recognize the areas that are strong (and therefore don't need as much attention) and address those areas which need more attention. This is why your streamlined schedule will end up looking different from everyone else's. Not too different, because most of our kids need development in similar areas, but still, different.

            For example, I remember looking at MP guides early on and thinking, "Is this all there is? This will be so easy for my child because she is such a strong reader, and she's so advanced beyond her grade." Well, but then I had her try it. And lo and behold, it was a lot harder for her than I expected. Because the work is not just about comprehending what they have read. It is also about being asked questions, developing strong, complete answers, composing those answers into good sentences, and writing those sentences into their guides. There are a lot more skills involved in that than I realized back then and it takes a great deal more time when those skills are underdeveloped. MP has a way of pointing out to us our children's weakest areas and helping us correct them - which is incredibly humbling but also incredibly valuable for the long-term picture of their education.

            This is what you both may be realizing right now - or something similar given your own circumstances. It is making these early weeks take a lot longer than they will as the year moves on. As everyone has suggested, cutting back on the amount of work you expect her to complete is a great way to deal with the new challenges. As she develops her skills, she will be able to handle more and more of the work herself - which will then free you up a lot more. I want to encourage you to look for ways to streamline right now, but keep in mind that these adjustments need only be temporary. As you both grow in your familiarity with MP, and as those weaker skills get strengthened, you can gradually readjust and raise your expectations so that your children continue to make strong progress.

            AMDG,
            Sarah
            2020-2021
            16th Year HSing; 10th Year with MP
            DD, 19, Homeschool grad; college sophomore
            DS, 17
            DD, 15
            DD, 13
            DD, 11
            DD, 9
            DD, 7
            +DS+
            DS, 2

            Comment


              #7
              Re: 6th Grade time to complete

              Thank you to everyone who replied. This is still overwhelming. There is so much great information and a lot of it is getting missed since there is so much to do. For example, in Christian Studies it is nice to go over the background/summary information with the student, then read the Children's Bible, go over the Big Picture of the Bible and review the associated verses, memorize the verse and review the copywork verses (which we never did since we never used the copybook), go over the previous memory work (most of which is forgotten since the last time we did Christian Studies was a couple of years ago), have the student fill out the workbook, go over the workbook, and do the activities. Other than reviewing the copywork verses, which we did not do before since I just ignored that part, we did all of this in the past. Now we have one day with like 30-45 minutes to do Christian Studies. There is basically time to read the lesson, have Stella answer the workbook questions, and have me check them to see if they are right. We are missing out on the richness of the program because we are not doing the rest of it. I don't like it at all. This was a subject we used to love. I guess I probably need to ignore the lesson plans for this subject, and do it the way we used to do, along with adding in going over the copybook verses. That adds more time, of course, but I am frustrated by missing out on the beauty. Just reading a children's Bible and answering some workbook questions is really not adding much to our studies. I am realizing that we are probably going to have to skip at least one subject, and that is looking like Latin. My husband has never been in favor of me teaching Latin anyway. I think that after our week off next week we should be able to come back and start Classical Composition and still be at 6 hours a day, but adding in Latin is going to get us up to 8, and if she is doing that much school she might as well be doing it at a public school. My idea of homeschool always involved having time to pursue interests other than school, and we are already not getting much of that, and will be down to not getting basically any of it if she does more than 6 hours a day of school. 6 hours is already too much, in my opinion. We should be spending an hour or two a day going to the library or outside or to the grocery store or the local art galleries. We should be going down to Denver once every 2 weeks to see a play or a ballet or a museum and have that not push us back in school. Next week would have been an educational vacation, but since it is not MP it doesn't really count or help us keep up with the unrelenting pace. I guess I am just saddened by this.
              JeJe Greer
              Mom to:
              Stella 9th grade with half MP and half Schole Academy classes
              Clara (Combination of SC 5/6 and 4th New User)

              Comment


                #8
                Re: 6th Grade time to complete

                JeJe,
                I am sorry to hear that the beginning of the year has been disappointing for you. I don’t think any of us want a homeschool experience where it is just rushing through, race against the clock, missing the parts we believe are most valuable. Not at all.

                But please know that many of us have experienced the difficulties of the transition period. It can be hard to be patient, but it really does get better as you grow in your experience with the entire program. When I was in your shoes, we had three cores we started from scratch, with at least two older kids doing a miss-mash of things. We simply survived that first year! And each year after that, things got better and better. I learned to be a better teacher, and thus to manage our timeframes better, and our kids learned to be better students and to meet the expectations the program has for them. These last five years have been fantastic as far as having a solid routine and really doing things well - even with three moves and two babies thrown in!

                You are definitely in a certain spot with the curriculum right now, and it doesn’t jive well with you. That’s ok. I can get that and relate to it. But for me, and for so many folks we have helped with MP, it doesn’t stay that way, if you give it time and keep trying.

                And as for Latin, again, no worries if it is not something you can include right now. Focus on getting better at the things you are doing. But like I said earlier, keep it in mind for when things are better. You can lower the expectations for a time, to make the transition time better, but a year from now, you most likely will be doing a lot better and you might be able to rethink whether you have time for Latin.

                But thank you for keeping us all abreast of your journey. I am sure your posts are resonating with other readers, and I am also sure you are getting a lot of prayerful support from those who have gone through these sorts of trials and have gotten through them.

                AMDG,
                Sarah
                2020-2021
                16th Year HSing; 10th Year with MP
                DD, 19, Homeschool grad; college sophomore
                DS, 17
                DD, 15
                DD, 13
                DD, 11
                DD, 9
                DD, 7
                +DS+
                DS, 2

                Comment


                  #9
                  Re: 6th Grade time to complete

                  Jeje,

                  I wanted to add to Sarah's post that you should consider reading the Bible together and discussing (using the teacher guide for your discussion guidance), but don't use the student guide right now. I feel like you enjoyed studying the Bible together and you have lost that due to lack of time. So that is the piece you should retain. Drop the written work and the tests and read and discuss together, recite the Scripture, and enjoy this course. You could even do this together as a family at night. That will free up some time in your school day and bring the joy back into Bible study.

                  Tanya

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Re: 6th Grade time to complete

                    Jeje,

                    I'm sensing from your post that some of your feeling of stress is coming from what does and does not count as school. You reference it a little bit in your latest post and I think it was a concern before and I'm wondering if that is still a concern? For example, if you took Tanya's advice and did Bible study as a family, that maybe that wouldn't "count" as "school" somehow? Or that you must do the workbooks and testing in order for it to be school? Please pardon me if I'm off base on this.

                    We do a model of sabbath school scheduling where we have a break week every 7th week. This doesn't put us behind, it just means our school year is a little bit longer (and not even that much longer) than the public school's. Does that make sense? You don't have to feel rushed or stressed, you can do this at a slower pace, take breaks, leave time for free pursuits, etc. These things look different for every family, but I think we all get an idea of where we can push through or shorten things and where we want to spend our precious minutes with our children. Have you been able to shorten up the spelling time or relieve any of the pressure on your schedule since your first post?

                    Like Sarah said, I think the transition is hard. But we get into a groove and kids expand to meet higher expectations, and we as parents start to see where our time is best spent. But I would be lying if I said there weren't days that I didn't despair of our schedule or the demands on our time. So far, it has been worth it to perservere and figure out where and how to prioritize.

                    Best,
                    Jodi
                    Jodi
                    ~~~~~~~
                    2019-20 School Year:
                    Ethan (7A)
                    Matthew (5A)
                    Silas (1st)
                    Eleanor (4yo dabbling in PK as time allows)
                    Andrew (brand new as of Oct 2019)

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Re: 6th Grade time to complete

                      Well, I might be crazy but I don't think 6 hours is that unreasonable for a child this age to be working. It takes time to get a rich education. However, it is too much time for your to be 100% involved especially if you have another child. I moved towards a modified "cottage day" schedule in our homeschool. I budget my teaching time, and the rest of the time the kids are working/playing independently.

                      Here is my *current* method of keeping all of those plates spinning. (But is liable to change in a few months!) This is just working for this season.

                      8 AM: Breakfast, Devotions, Morning Recitations

                      8:30AM-Noon Older kids work on Latin, Greek, and Pre-Algebra. / School with youngest
                      • Day 1: Teach DD(10) her Latin lesson (watch the DVD with her and make sure she pays attention/understands)
                      • Day 2: Teach new Pre-Algebra lesson to DD(10) and DS(11)
                      • Day 3: Teach DS(11) his new Latin Lesson
                      • Day 4: Teach another pre-algebra lesson to DD(10) and DS(11)

                      After that, each kid is expected to work independently in math, Latin, and Greek Alphabet using an assignment sheet that I have given them. If they have questions or don't understand, they are always instructed to skip it for now until I am done with my youngest's school. If they finish early, the sometimes work on anything else they can do independently. (Spelling, comprehension questions, flashcard review, etc.)

                      Meanwhile, I basically am filling up my 5 year old's love bucket. I read aloud from a picture bible and our current chapter book. Then we read the Jr. K picture book. Then he works on phonics, penmanship, and math. Then we do a craft or game.

                      11:30 AM- I check back in with the older kids and grade any work WITH them. They make corrections as we go and discuss anything they didn't understand. We also do Latin recitation. If they finsihed their Latin and Math...great! If not, we move on and they have to do the rest for homework.

                      12:00PM-Lunch

                      12:30 PM-- Family Quick Clean

                      1:00 PM- Language Arts Block- I lead the kids in their English Grammar Recitation assignments, then we do composition together. Then they do spelling, typing/cursive, independently.

                      2:00PM- Literature Block with tea and snack (I alternate days working with the two older kids one-on-one)
                      Child Working with Mama
                      -Recite current poem (this is a check only. I'm not spending a ton of time. They work on memorization independently) I assign a stanza every two days about, plus review weeks.
                      -Grade prevous chapters comprehension question and enrichment together. Child makes any spelling or punctuation corrections.
                      -Go over new chapters vocabulary words and facts to know (already completed previous day by the student, just checking the work/reviewing today)
                      -Buddy read new chapter aloud together to work on fluency
                      -Do discussion questions and quotations together for the new chapter, preview enrichment.

                      (Meanwhile, the other older child is doing his independent literature)

                      Child working independently in literature does this:
                      -Work on memorizing the current poem. Do any assigned poetry work. (varies)
                      -Re-read the chapter that was read with mama the previous day
                      -Answer comprehension questions for that chapter. (Any questions are held until they work with me the next day).
                      -Complete enrichment
                      -Do vocabulary for the next chapter so we are ready to go.

                      My 5 year old usually plays in the same room we are doing literature. He usually runs over to hear the book we are reading.

                      3:00PM-4:30PM Afternoon Subjects Block
                      • Day 1: DD10's Christian Study and Classical Study with mama (similar format to literature), DS11's Independent Christian Study and Classical Study Day (comprehension questions, new vocab, re-read stories, flashcards, review)
                      • Day 2: Geography for both (done mostly independently with checks from mama) + Biology with the whole family
                      • Day 3: DS11's Christian Study and Classical Study with Mama, DD10's Independent Christian Study and Classical Study Day (comprehension questions, new vocab, re-read stories, flashcards, review)
                      • Day 4: Geography for both + Biology for the whole family.

                      ---
                      4:30PM-6:00PM- Free time (or work on things you didn't get finished in the day...but mama is off the clock!)

                      6:00PM-7:30PM- Dinner, clean up, etc.

                      7:30PM- Rest time, you get to read in your bed, etc.

                      We school 4 days per week. Squeezing the core into 4 days, so our days are a bit longer. (But the other three days are lighter) We do the Memoria Press Insect Guide as a group. I started a "Bug Club" for local homeschoolers using the MP book as a guide. So that doesn't feel like school for the kids since it is with friends at a park. We meet with our MathCounts team on the 5th day.
                      Cathy aka The Attached Mama
                      2019-2020
                      DS 12, 7th Grade
                      DD 11, 6th Grade
                      DS 5, K

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Re: 6th Grade time to complete

                        Cathy,

                        I just want to say that schedule is such an inspiration and gives me some ideas for our homeschool. THANK YOU for taking the time to write that all out. Amazing!
                        Jodi
                        ~~~~~~~
                        2019-20 School Year:
                        Ethan (7A)
                        Matthew (5A)
                        Silas (1st)
                        Eleanor (4yo dabbling in PK as time allows)
                        Andrew (brand new as of Oct 2019)

                        Comment

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