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How to Advanced the Advanced...Gently...

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    How to Advanced the Advanced...Gently...

    Hello all,

    This year my third child Z was supposed to be a JrK. He is pretty old for that group with a November birthday. In reality he screamed through first grade math with not a lick of difficulty and then proceed to learn to read and write in cursive. Right now he is wrapping up Storytime Treasures (fairly) neatly in cursive. Basically, he did first grade this year with his older brother. We don't use full cores, so mostly my questions have to do with language arts. Stortyime Treasures is a big stretch for him in attention and neatness. He doesn't love reading at the moment (this is a MATH kid) so I am loathe to try to get him to jump up to the level of second grade literature. The length would intimidate him, both the books and the amount of writing required. (He doesn't struggle with the content per se, but he finds Little Bear chapters long, and sometimes he finishes his comprehension worksheets while I am helping someone else usually without complete sentences.) So what should I do with literature to keep the reading/writing requirements in line? What about copybook? One the one hand I want to maintain his cursive, but are the passages in the cursive books too long for a kindergartener? And his brother is doing Prima next year, what do I do when he wants to tag along? I bet he could do Prima, but he would hit a wall a year or two later. Honestly, he has amazing focus and stamina for a five year old, but we are getting to the point that it is hard to balance building a solid foundation, not boring him, and not expecting a second grade workload out of a five year old.

    Also does anyone have any suggestions for books to try to interest a reluctant boy? He can read Little Bear without too much trouble, but the only books he likes are Elephant and Piggie (and we have read every one of those in the library, twice, at least.) Any other books to try?

    Thanks for the advice,
    Lena

    #2
    Re: How to Advanced the Advanced...Gently...

    Armymom,

    It was surprising for me to read the younger brother learning what is being covered with the older brother. Little ones absorb so much just from being in the room during the lessons of older siblings. For literature I would continue on with More Story Time Treasures but instead of letting him complete the literature guide without you, be sure that gets done together. That way you know all the supplemental skills are being absorbed and that comprehension questions are answered in a concise, correct manner. There is no need to write out answers to all the questions, especially since he is young. Rather, choose one or two and work with him modelling how to take a long, oral answer and condense it. Write this on a board and have him copy into his book. Working through the process this way will afford him independence with the guides in time. Slow the remainder of the first grade year to give his reading time to develop. Be sure to read the selections multiple times to improve speed, fluency and expression.

    I don't see a problem with allowing him to complete the kindergarten copybook having him translate it into cursive. You are correct in that the verses and poems are more age appropriate. If you don't want him to do that, you could always get the Start Write CD and make your own cursive copybook pages using the verses listed in the back of the curriculum manual.

    Since your little guy doesn't like writing, I would let him participate in Prima lessons orally with his older sibling but require zero writing. When he is ready to complete the actual lessons in full, his stamina with writing will have improved.

    Blessings,
    Michelle T

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      #3
      Re: How to Advanced the Advanced...Gently...

      What about jumping to simply classical 2? Or 3 even? Simply classical reduces the writing workload and it would give you a complete schedule to follow.

      Simply classical 3 will cover the second year of cursive, the first half of grade 2 math, and More Storytime Treasures. Exactly where you're at. It will also introduce prima second semester, after phonics has been mastered. They've said to not do prima until all of first grade classic core phonics skills have been mastered, so I would hesitate to start prima right away as he's only done storytime treasures, not More.

      This plan would kind of give you a 'gap year' to continue his skills but slow him down to ensure he's still with age and maturity appropriate content.
      DS12- Simply Classical mash-up of SC Spelling 1, intensive reading remediation, and MPOA 4th grade math.
      DD10- Classic Core 4th Grade w/ 5th grade literature
      DD8- Classic Core 2nd Grade

      We've completed:
      Classic Core Jr. kindergarten, kindergarten, first grade, second grade, third grade
      Simply Classical levels B, C, 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5/6

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        #4
        Re: How to Advanced the Advanced...Gently...

        Has he tried reading any of the Frog and Toad books by Arnold Lobel? All my children LOVED these. Actually, anything by Arnold Lobel has been warmly welcomed, e.g. Owl at Home, Mouse Soup, etc.

        He might also try reading from some of the many Richard Scarry books. I know that my own childhood copy of his Best Storybook Ever was much loved and appreciated, and I enjoyed learning to read it myself as much as I enjoyed listening to my sweet Mama. I still have it! It is worn, so I "archived" it several years ago and bought a more recent copy for my children. (Mine is the original version with "Pierre Bear" instead of "Good Night,Little Bear." I guess some people were offended by a bear hunting moose and seals. Go figure!).

        Anyway, those are a couple of ideas. Oh, he may very well enjoy Franklin (the turtle) books. I can't recall the author just now. The Arthur books by Lillian Hoban.

        Best wishes to you and your little man! What a great problem to have!
        Joanie

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          #5
          Re: How to Advanced the Advanced...Gently...

          What about the Mercy Watson books by Kate Dicamillo? Maybe a different pig would spark his interest? Minnie and Moo and Nate the Great were popular here as well. What about easier non-fiction? My now 11 year old boy really didn't like fiction until he was a good enough reader to tackle more interesting storylines, but pretty much tried to check out the whole section on the topic of the day at that age.
          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

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            #6
            Re: How to Advanced the Advanced...Gently...

            Originally posted by Mom2mthj View Post
            What about the Mercy Watson books by Kate Dicamillo? Maybe a different pig would spark his interest? Minnie and Moo and Nate the Great were popular here as well. What about easier non-fiction? My now 11 year old boy really didn't like fiction until he was a good enough reader to tackle more interesting storylines, but pretty much tried to check out the whole section on the topic of the day at that age.
            Yes! Minnie and Moo are hilarious!
            Joanie

            Comment


              #7
              Re: How to Advanced the Advanced...Gently...

              I'm going to second the non-fiction route. All of the Steve Jenkins books. Diary of a Worm and Diary of a Spider by Doreen Cronin. Jim Arnosky picture books (Raccoon on His Own, Raccoons and Ripe Corn, Every Autumn Comes the Bear). Just walk through the non-fiction department of the library and grab whatever looks interesting. I do this every week, and, as a result, my kids have read about a wide variety of topics: science, poetry, history, fairy tales from other cultures, art, architecture, weaponry, etc... They descend upon those books like a plague of locusts the second I get them into the house. No comprehension questions or vocabulary assigned, just pure enjoyment.
              There are many preschool read-alouds that he might enjoy reading on his own. Since they know the story, they can figure out the words that are more difficult. Has he read the three "Angus" books by Marjorie Flack? Eric Carle, Tomie DePaola, David Shannon,
              A couple of my boys did hit a wall with being able to read far beyond their writing abilities. I let them work ahead in math, spent more time on cursive, and gave them as many books to read on their own as they wanted. Eventually it all evens out. Since the passages in NAC get longer, I just used other cursive handwriting pages.

              Blessings,
              Jude

              DD 20, DS 17, DS 14, DS 12, DD 10, DS 7, DD 5
              DD24
              DS21
              DS18
              DS16
              DD14
              DS11
              DD9

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                #8
                Re: How to Advanced the Advanced...Gently...

                I know you asked for books, and others have given you great suggestions, but have you considered music lessons? A kiddo his age can begin seriously study on violin or some other instrument, and start working on another skill that requires years of building.

                Just a thought!
                Amanda - Mama to three crazy boys, teacher at St. Dominic Latin (FFL, TFL, 4FL, Traditional Logic 1&2), Memoria College student

                2021-2022
                9th grade - a mix of MPOA, Vita Beata, Lukeion, and AOPS
                8th grade - 8M with modifications
                4th grade - 4A

                "Non nisi te, Domine. Non nisi te" - St. Thomas Aquinas

                Comment


                  #9
                  Re: How to Advanced the Advanced...Gently...

                  Originally posted by Nerdmom View Post
                  I know you asked for books, and others have given you great suggestions, but have you considered music lessons? A kiddo his age can begin seriously study on violin or some other instrument, and start working on another skill that requires years of building.

                  Just a thought!
                  Good one! That's a great idea.
                  Joanie

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Re: How to Advanced the Advanced...Gently...

                    Thank you everyone. I have a library list of some books we have never tried. I have a feeling the nonfiction might take off at some point, but we haven't found his topic yet.

                    I think we will stick to oral Prima Latina and I might pursue some of the SC3 or do it yourself copywork options for next year.

                    I would love to do music lessons but we can't afford them at the moment. I am going to take a crack at teaching my almost 9 year old some basic piano myself next year, so maybe he will hang out and soak some things up himself. He has been known to sit under his sister's desk during math and shout out the occasional answer so maybe he will do that with piano too.

                    Lena

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