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1st Grader Bored with STT + MSTT

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    1st Grader Bored with STT + MSTT

    Our first grader finished his reading work, and I'm hesitant to move him up to the second grade one because the first grade was incredibly easy for him. The books were stretched between two weeks, and he'd read them in a matter of ten minutes. I've been told to have him read "below level, at grade level, above grade level". Which, he has, but I am not sure at what point do I move him up in work? (He reads an entire chapter book every day, is able to tell us about the story and characters). I'm worried we aren't helping him excel in the areas he has natural abilities in, and I honestly don't know where the line is when you keep a student at level versus pushing them.

    Any insight for this mama would be great. Thank you!
    DD (10) - special needs
    DS (6)
    DD (1)

    #2
    While you do want to keep in mind moving up too many levels will result in eventually the student is reading books with themes too mature for him. But you homeschool so you can adjust work to his level somewhat as well. I’d say go ahead and move into 2nd grade literature but be sure you are doing the vocabulary and all written work. At this stage adding the Enrichment and Honors Activities to the rigor of the regular lessons can be just enough of a challenge. Remember we read selections aloud more than one time at this stage. Not because students can’t understand it the first time but to hone their oral reading which practices that decoding, speed and fluency as well as expression.

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      #3
      You will find a large jump in skills required for 2nd lit, not in the reading level so much as the writing and thinking level. Go ahead and start 2nd lit, but be ready to do a lot of modeling of written answers. Don’t rush through the guides just because the book was read quickly. Let him finish the book in a day if he wishes. Then make him re read the assigned section each day before doing that day’s work. Remember the literature studies cover more skills than just reading ability.
      At the same time offer him challenging books to read in his free time. It seems you are already doing this so keep doing it. You aren’t holding back his potential by not jumping through the lit guides as a blazing fast speed. There are so many skills to be gained by slowly focusing on the guides. There are vocabulary skills, writing skills, analysis skills, appreciating beautiful writing, and opportunities for crafts and art. Don’t let him just slip down answers in the comprehension section. Don’t just do them orally. Discuss with him and help him write more elegant answers than he can on his own.
      If you suspect he will end up on the accelerated track starting in 3rd (where they do Latin and Myths and such in one year instead of two), then you will essentially be skipping the 4th grade literature as 4A uses the lit from 5th. If you happen to get a year or even just half a year ahead in lit and end up doing some 3rd grade lit in 2nd, you can fill in 3rd with some of the skipped 4th books. MP also has a selection of guides that aren’t used in the curriculum and you could fill in with those also.
      Debbie- mom of 7, civil engineering grad, married to mechanical engineer
      DD, 26, BFA '17 graphic design and illustration
      DS, 24, BS '18 mechanical engineering
      DS, 22, BS '20 Chemsitry, pursuing phd at Wash U
      (DDIL married #3 in 2020, MPOA grad, BA '20 philosophy, pusrsing phd at SLU)
      DS, 20, Physics major
      DD, 17, dyslexic, 11th grade customizednMP plus co-op
      DS, 13, future engineer/scientist/ world conquerer 8A
      DD, 7 , 1ST Future astronaut, robot building space artist

      Comment


        #4
        Are you doing the First Grade Enrichment read-alouds and supplemental science and history readers? My accelerated reader found pure joy in reading each read-aloud after I had read it to her with good speed, pronunciation and expression. There are so many bonus activities, such as writing your own poem, crafting a sentence about a story you read, or identifying rhyming words, opposites, character charts, making a chart about herbivores, omnivores and carnivores and writing in animal names, labeling an airplane's parts and creating an aviation timeline...the list goes on. These activities can heartily challenge a precocious reader and bridge the gap between first and second (if you don't want to move forward).
        Mama to 2

        Spring start MP1
        Summer start 5A

        Completed MPK, MP1 Math & Enrichment, MP2, 3A, 4A, SC B, SC C,
        SC1 (Phonics/Math), SC2's Writing Book 1

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          #5
          Also can I say I’m jealous? My youngest was 7 in August and could be in 2nd, but is struggling in 1st. We haven’t even started STT because she is still sounding out each and every word and missing many. She just needs some time for it to click. She is my 7th. 5 of the older 6 were strong readers and one is dyslexic. My baby doesn’t show signs of being dyslexic like her sister. She just is so extremely engineering oriented and so creative that her decoding skills haven’t caught up yet. I’ve had a few kids who devoured books in 1st grade and one who finished Lord of the Rings at age 8 and I really miss that.
          Debbie- mom of 7, civil engineering grad, married to mechanical engineer
          DD, 26, BFA '17 graphic design and illustration
          DS, 24, BS '18 mechanical engineering
          DS, 22, BS '20 Chemsitry, pursuing phd at Wash U
          (DDIL married #3 in 2020, MPOA grad, BA '20 philosophy, pusrsing phd at SLU)
          DS, 20, Physics major
          DD, 17, dyslexic, 11th grade customizednMP plus co-op
          DS, 13, future engineer/scientist/ world conquerer 8A
          DD, 7 , 1ST Future astronaut, robot building space artist

          Comment


            #6
            I am somewhat in the same boat as you with my First Grader, houseofhobbits. Mine polishes off reading books that are at a much higher level at a quick pace and can speak to characters and plot lines and remembers facts when asked. That said, he'll then complain when I ask him to write a simple complete sentence. He is a First Grader, after all!

            You've gotten a lot of great advice from the other parents above with which I heartily concur. Stay the course and trust the program. Let them read all the advanced books they would like during their free time. Read all the extra read alongs and make sure they are completing all of their work as you go along. And advance they when you are ready to move forward, but not until they have completely finished the given materials to your level of liking. Thankfully, my oldest enjoys reading and rereading books at this stage and he doesn't mind reading the STT and MSTT again as they come in the curriculum manual.
            21/22 - 4th MP Year, Dad & Quadrivium Teacher
            S - 7, 2nd MP @ HLN & Home
            D - 5, K MP @ HLN & Home
            S - 4, Jr K MP @ Home

            Comment


              #7
              Most of our kids have been this way; not all, but most. We have adhered to the advice above and held the course. Each child has to “do the next thing” rather than skipping. And they have usually read all the literature selections numerous times before studying them for school. But it never fails that there is more to grasp than what they caught when they read it on their own. Think about books you love that you read over and over. There is so much to be gained each time; even more so when you are forced to take your time.

              The other point I want to emphasize is that while it is wonderful for your child to have strengths in certain areas that you can easily identify, this does not mean they have these strengths across the board, in every subject. If they did, that would indeed be wonderful; but it is not often the case. It is ok for some area of school to be easy for a time. Most likely there is some other aspect of school with which they struggle, that requires extra time and attention. You would not have the time and patience to help them with every single thing if it was all at their maximum level of challenge. Instead, treasure the fact that there are some things that come easily, and then give that extra energy to the areas that don’t.

              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

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