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    2nd Grade Core or SImply Classical

    Decisions, decisions, decisions....

    I am trying to decide if I should use 2nd grade core or a SImply Classical with my daughter next school year. She is an almost 8 year old and we are nearing completion of 1st core in most areas. It’s been a bit of slow going as she didn’t start independently reading until a couple of months ago and due to unpredictable family medical mayhem our schedule hasn’t been structured the best this year. Her reading comprehension is fantastic, but she despises (DESPISES) writing and spelling. I keep workbook work to a minimum and we do most StoryTime answers orally. I delayed spelling until she completed FSR E since that with spelling lessons was too much. Currently we take about an average of 1.5 weeks to complete a regular weeks worth of spelling because I do have her write for all those lessons, but break it down into smaller chunks. We have found a pretty good rhythm and avoided meltdowns by doing academic work 4 days and the other days are the enrichment and fun. I plan on the same schedule next year and we are transitioning to a year round calendar.

    My original plan was to move into 2nd grade core (although technically she should be a rising 3rd grader and is considered such as far as paperwork goes) and keep plugging forward like we have this year knowing we will have to adjust the pace, but then I received a SCM catalog...

    Looking at this alternative curriculum, I could finish up the 1st, continue with math and start Latin over the summer, and then move into SC 4. Or I could move over easily to SC 3 now and maybe adjust the literature up.

    Anyway, looking for thoughts, input, and advice. I plan on going to the Cincy GHC and maybe Sodalitas, but want to chew on these options before hand. Thanks!



    Peace and all good,
    Tricia

    2018/2019
    DD, 24, public K-12 and baby stepping toward independence.
    DS, 17, dual enrollment with local community college.
    DS, 15, MPOA Latin, mix of everything else.
    DD, 13, MPOA Latin, mix of everything else.
    DD, 07, MP1/MP2

    "Pray, hope, and don't worry. Worry is useless. God is merciful and will hear your prayer."
    ~ Saint. Padre Pio

    #2
    It sounds like you are doing a great job modifying the curriculum already to meet your daughter's needs! How far into TS1 is she? Also, no need to do any Latin over the summer. SC3 has you doing the first 5 lessons of Prima, but then you re-do them in SC4. Has she completed FSRE and More Storytime treasures? That would help us answer your questions. If you are eliminating a lot of the writing moving over to Simply Classical might help you incrementally add back in some additional writing. The writing book in SC3 makes me wonder if doing that would be a great benefit. I would not do that + the MP2 Lit guides though. The phonics scheduled in SC3 really is done through the Core Skills 3 book and the SC spelling book 2, after week 8. This might be helpful, if you need the additional help in writing, but not in the phonics. You would get additional phonics help the following year in the MP2 guides, but might help build up the writing/spelling skill enabling her to complete either SC4 or MP2 with more of the writing components.

    Lastly, it is my understanding that Cheryl Swope herself will be at GHC Cincy, so you can speak directly to her! (she also answers questions directly on the SN threads!)
    Christine

    (2019/2020)
    DD1 8/23/09 - SC5/6
    DS2 9/1/11 - SC3,4, 5/6 combo
    DD3 2/9/13 -SC2 to start, MP1 second semester

    Previous Years
    DD 1 (MPK, SC2 (with AAR), SC3, SC4’
    DS2 (SCB, SCC, MPK, SC2)
    DD3 (SCA, SCB, Jr. K workbooks, soaking up from the others, MPK)

    Comment


      #3
      Thanks for the info! She has finished FSRE and is in week 8 of Traditional Spelling I. Reading is Week 24 and Math Week 30. Her biggest hang-up is with writing (penmanship and composition). Last year was spent mostly on focusing on pencil grip since she had a really weird way of holding her pen. Neatness is slowly improving (we only focus on that with cursive and copywork), but she is still very much dependent on me for what to put down on the paper. She can give me answers orally and dictate sound narratives for her nature book, but freezes if she is supposed to do the writing.
      Peace and all good,
      Tricia

      2018/2019
      DD, 24, public K-12 and baby stepping toward independence.
      DS, 17, dual enrollment with local community college.
      DS, 15, MPOA Latin, mix of everything else.
      DD, 13, MPOA Latin, mix of everything else.
      DD, 07, MP1/MP2

      "Pray, hope, and don't worry. Worry is useless. God is merciful and will hear your prayer."
      ~ Saint. Padre Pio

      Comment


        #4
        Originally posted by tkmaples View Post
        , but she is still very much dependent on me for what to put down on the paper. She can give me answers orally and dictate sound narratives for her nature book, but freezes if she is supposed to do the writing.
        Can you elaborate on this? Your description above actually is how it is supposed to be conducted, through 3rd/4th grade. She orally composes an answer (in a complete sentence) and you write what she says on the board (or in her guide above the dotted lines) and she copies what you write. Accept a reasonable, age appropriate answer. You can also guide her to the sentence, if need be.
        Christine

        (2019/2020)
        DD1 8/23/09 - SC5/6
        DS2 9/1/11 - SC3,4, 5/6 combo
        DD3 2/9/13 -SC2 to start, MP1 second semester

        Previous Years
        DD 1 (MPK, SC2 (with AAR), SC3, SC4’
        DS2 (SCB, SCC, MPK, SC2)
        DD3 (SCA, SCB, Jr. K workbooks, soaking up from the others, MPK)

        Comment


          #5
          Yes, it’s the copying/writing that throws her over the edge. So really, I think our biggest crux is the physical aspect of writing. ?
          Peace and all good,
          Tricia

          2018/2019
          DD, 24, public K-12 and baby stepping toward independence.
          DS, 17, dual enrollment with local community college.
          DS, 15, MPOA Latin, mix of everything else.
          DD, 13, MPOA Latin, mix of everything else.
          DD, 07, MP1/MP2

          "Pray, hope, and don't worry. Worry is useless. God is merciful and will hear your prayer."
          ~ Saint. Padre Pio

          Comment


            #6
            May I suggest posting in the SC board? Cheryl is wonderful about responding with help.
            The Homeschool Grads:
            J- 6/96
            S- 11/98

            Still Homeschooling:
            G- 4/04
            D- 5/05
            F- 7/08 (my only girl)

            Future Homeschooler:
            M- 9/16

            Comment


              #7
              Is the issue her just not wanting to write or that she is not able to write? Things that are hard are not fun to do. If the issue is truly ability the SC program or a slowed version of the regular MP is the way to go. If the issue is that she just doesn't like to take the time to write that is another issue.

              The regular MP course work does include quite a bit of writing that students are eased into beginning in 1st and 2nd grades but jumps to even more writing in 3rd, most of which is in the devlop together then copy from the board format that you indicated she does not like. So, if she just doesn't like writing, my advice is to ease her into it. Writing is a necessary component of coursework. She is going to have to write, which in the early grades is mostly copying after having discussed the answer together. A way to ease into the expectation is by having her copy one answer in the first week and two in the second week etc. until she is able to do all without frustration/fatigue. Take breaks if needed or institute a snack or stretch time in the middle of the lesson. You can couch this method in, "These are the last few weeks of this grade and we need to be ready for the next so work is going to be a little more challenging for the rest of the year." Make it matter of fact, this is what we need to do. Be sure to provide lots of encouragement and praise. Play classical music while she copies and display her work or show off to other family members if possible.

              If the issue is truly ability, the SC thread will provide the best advice as mentioned by someone above.

              Blessings,

              Comment


                #8
                Your situation sounds a bit like my middle daughter. And with the experience with my oldest as well I have gone both routes. There are many aspects of Simply Classical that I absolutely adore and will do again with even my NT children as they are just so perfect. SC has been exactly what we needed with my daughter who was a little slow to start reading and we are keeping alo hmm g at her own pace. In many cases, I have questioned moving her over to the Classical Core Curriculum but she is getting all the best parts with Simply Classical and it is working so I'm staying with it. My oldest has been working through the Classical Core Curriculum since Junior Kindergarten and now that I have learned new things about teaching with SC, I almost wish I could move her to that path. (She is beyond what is currently available.) Honestly, our courses are a bit of both, but we are student paced.
                Margaret of Georgia, in west TN – Enginerd’s wife and Mama

                2019-2020 · 8th MP Year, 9th Homeschooling
                Trekking along at a student self-pace...
                DD Summer 2009 · 5th
                DD Summer 2011 · SC4
                DS Summer 2014 · JrK/K
                DD Summer 2017 · Pre
                DS …EDD 11/2019

                Memoria Scholé Academy
                Blog: Creative Madness Mama
                CherryBlossomMJ

                Comment


                  #9
                  Writing is hard for her. Last year was spent mostly working on a correct pencil grip. This year she is doing much better, but when she gets tired she slips back to that weird grip she had. I have noticed that she doesn't complain about cursive practice as much (other than that pesky lower case k) compared to printing, so maybe once she has learned all her cursive letters the writing angst will diminish a bit (maybe)? Anyway, it looks like I will stick with our current course and move into MP2 and adjust as needed. Thanks everyone for helping me flesh out a direction for our next steps!
                  Peace and all good,
                  Tricia

                  2018/2019
                  DD, 24, public K-12 and baby stepping toward independence.
                  DS, 17, dual enrollment with local community college.
                  DS, 15, MPOA Latin, mix of everything else.
                  DD, 13, MPOA Latin, mix of everything else.
                  DD, 07, MP1/MP2

                  "Pray, hope, and don't worry. Worry is useless. God is merciful and will hear your prayer."
                  ~ Saint. Padre Pio

                  Comment


                    #10
                    There could be an underlying issue causing her dislike of writing, but there also might not be. If she just became adept at reading, her arc towards proficiency in writing might also be around the bend. My daughter was an accelerated reader in 1st, but I came here griping about how it took 45 min to get her to write 8 words. It was like pulling teeth. In my right mind I couldn't imagine what was going on. She had already been testing by every test under the sun. Something indescribable happened over the summer between her 1st and 2nd grade years as she inched closer to 8. One day, colorful letters was the bane of her existence. The next month it was her favorite activity. The amazing thing about MP is that the predictable format and uncluttered design free the child's organizational skills up and allow her to work only with the new material. If her cognitive abilities and executive functioning allow her to work with the themes, skills, and concepts, then adapt MP2 to incorporate more cursive and those targeted copied lit guide answers. Also, with the caveat that special needs kids have completely different expectations, sometimes the whine comes before the concept acquisition. My eldest is most likely to whine right before she reaches mastery. That's when I push. Just this past week she thanked me for my hardline against print at Lesson 18 in MP2. All subjects, from Prima Latina to Lit Guides to Enrichment paragraphs to Patterns of Nature had to be completed in cursive or else rewritten. For that burgeoning writer, it's hard to switch between the two. I found that she could spell a word in print but not cursive because the muscle memory from all the practice was in print. Initially, she begged me to do her workbooks in print, and out of frustration I let her, but it delayed the inevitable. When she pushed past the hard thing, she had these ebbs and flows of enjoyment and angst over fluency and illegibility. Honestly, we did almost nothing in the 4 weeks over the summer that she got better. Time and maturity always help.
                    Mama to 2, Married 17 years

                    SY 19/20
                    DD 8-3A
                    DS 5-SC C

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Other people have mentioned in other posts about grip strength. I have 4 kids and somehow right handed hubby and I have made 3 lefties. Even the 2 year old is a lefty. I found a tool on Amazon that made them hold a pencil with a proper grip. Strangely enough, they moved off of the grip faster than the one kiddo who right handed. I had to go back and put the grip back on his pencil to force his fingers to get into the correct position. It's a cheap device. https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

                      Click image for larger version

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                      Melissa

                      DS (MP2) - 8
                      DS (MP1) - 7
                      DS (K) - 5
                      DD (Adorable distraction) 2

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Originally posted by MBentley View Post
                        Other people have mentioned in other posts about grip strength. I have 4 kids and somehow right handed hubby and I have made 3 lefties. Even the 2 year old is a lefty. I found a tool on Amazon that made them hold a pencil with a proper grip. Strangely enough, they moved off of the grip faster than the one kiddo who right handed. I had to go back and put the grip back on his pencil to force his fingers to get into the correct position. It's a cheap device. https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

                        Click image for larger version

Name:	57316148235__69E49E3F-16F3-4A71-A2E0-B6454CD9B131.JPG
Views:	1
Size:	42.5 KB
ID:	111420Click image for larger version

Name:	57316159976__9EE01845-0087-432C-8B0A-7AEDB1DE4B0E.JPG
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ID:	111421
                        These were suggested to us by the Kindergarten teacher at HLN (Nashville) and have worked very well with our Junior Kindergartener. Highly recommended.
                        2019/2020 - 2nd MP Year
                        S - 5, K @ home and HLN
                        D - 3, rising through minor leagues quickly
                        S - 2, the master of disasters

                        Comment


                          #13
                          These grips are pictured in the front of the NAC books as recommended by the author. They do a fine job of keeping fingers in their correct place while writing.

                          Comment


                            #14
                            I am so getting one of those for leftie M! Do they fit on mechanical pencils, too? Mine can’t stand wood pencils. I have strange kids.
                            The Homeschool Grads:
                            J- 6/96
                            S- 11/98

                            Still Homeschooling:
                            G- 4/04
                            D- 5/05
                            F- 7/08 (my only girl)

                            Future Homeschooler:
                            M- 9/16

                            Comment


                              #15
                              If it is standard pencil size then yes.

                              Comment

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