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Stepping down from SC4 to SC3?

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    Stepping down from SC4 to SC3?

    I've planning on starting the SC4 for my daughter next week ( and have the full curriculum at hand). At this point I feel less overwhelmed, but more importantly fully confident about our decision to homeschool! It helped to read other posts with the reminder that I should not worry about checking boxes. Instead I'm realizing that my focus needs to be on letting Lilly catch up and feel in control of her material (which would probably be for the first time since Preschool!). So now I'm even thinking about dropping a level to SC3 for that reason. I'm realizing she's missed out on some crucial building blocks such as short vowel sounds. I'm not sure however if it might be too elementary (young) for her considering that she's 11, and keeps up around a grade level below at school. Or so I'm being told at least. I think a lot of scaffolding has taken place, so I'm realizing it's hard to really judge where she is in reality until I start working with her myself, and let HER do the work, not the Special Ed teacher. Her knowledge base and performance is asynchronous for sure. Very bright and perceptive in certain instances, and then I'm taken a back when I realize she doesn't know rudimentary things such as vowel sounds that I mentioned, or telling time well etc. Also, she never picks up a book to read on her own, despite me being an avid reader and seeing me read daily. Does anyone have the experience of having an older child (but with learning challenges more on the milder side) working with SC3 and finding it a good choice? Or would she get enough opportunity for review of the basic grammar in SC4 if we pay extra attention to that area? I want to give her a year of feeling in charge of her studies, while still being challenged. That is, working within that "sweet spot" that Cheryl wrote about in her book. I don't think she would mind the more "babyish" material necessarily. I really want her to relax into her studies so she can finally absorb, catch up, gain confidence, and reach her full potential and LEARN at her own pace. Her whole life has been a constant of "barely hanging on" to what the rest of the class is doing, and when she's finally catches up they have already moved on. So again I think she'd be able to handle the SC4 fine, but I want to make sure she'll have enough time to review the basics in that level. And if not, I'm happy to move down one step and go for that. We have another week before school start where we are with her brothers starting next Wed, so I still have time to set up our year. I feel so blessed to have found Simply Classical and this forum. Your support has given me the courage to take the step to bring her home, and I'm now excited to start out our year of learning together.

    Malin

    #2
    Re: Stepping down from SC4 to SC3?

    Malin, responses may vary, but I think you can stay with SC 4 if her reading matches the literature.

    We provide quite a bit of review in SC 4. For example we review basic phonics instruction through Traditional Spelling One in SC 4, which MP uses in 1st grade. We teach and review basic English grammar in Prima Latina & CS: LA, which MP covers in 2nd grade. Arithmetic will provide review as well.

    SC 4 will give her a higher "number" of level, but with the remedial and incremental skills you are looking for. If you wanted to review further, you might create games of CVC words, for example, as they appear in her lessons.

    That said, if she cannot read the literature reading level, you might be better off with teaching SC 2 phonics & reading first -- Individual Lesson Plans, lessons, & literature -- as an entry to SC 4. (I do not think SC 3 will help, because we ramp up reading expectations in SC 3. Then we come back to review in SC 4.) The easier and possibly more efficient method might be to teach SC 4 as written but plan to start your day with Traditional Spelling as your most comprehensive focus. Spend as much intensive time on those phonics lessons as she needs before moving to math. Keep reading, math, and writing at the forefront, which we designed for SC 4, and she might be fine. After you begin, if you still think she might need even more remedial phonics work than we provide in SC 4's Traditional Spelling & Classical Phonics, you might consider SC 2 as a Phonics & Reading Intensive prior to SC 4.

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      #3
      Re: Stepping down from SC4 to SC3?

      Another option might be to review CS: Phonics K & 1 alongside SC 4, if she doesn't mind workbook pages. My daughter loved extra work like this and eagerly finished pages for various incentives to brush up on phonics & spelling. Your daughter might not feel the same way, and neither did my son, so you could cover these in mini lessons together to "fill in gaps" that might have occurred.

      I do like the way you're thinking, by the way. This is an exciting time for your daughter as you & she redeem her education together!

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        #4
        Re: Stepping down from SC4 to SC3?

        I agree with Cheryl, if she can read the literature in SC4, give it a go. If she can read CVC words (short vowells) it shouldn't take much review for her to learn them in isolation. It's possible she learned them with different terminology in school.

        You could quickly test this with lists of CVC words. First group by short vowells...cat, bat, fat, sat, that, chat, splat. They get trickier down the list. Go through each short vowell sound like that. Then, do a mixed list...cat, pill, fun, pot, etc. Make sure she knows this isn't a race; you're looking for accuracy, not speed.

        I think if she struggles with that (tantrums or shuts down), move back to SC2 phonics. If she can do that, continue with your current plan. As Cheryl said, the Traditional Spelling will work with any half-mastered skills.
        Married to DH for 13 years. Living the rural life in the Colorado mountains

        DS10- Simply Classical 4 / Grade 3 Classic Core,
        DD8- Grade 2 Classic Core,
        DD 6- Classic Core Kindergarten

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          #5
          Re: Stepping down from SC4 to SC3?

          Thank you, this is all very helpful! She loves workbook pages just like your daughter, so I will add those as "homework" which is something she's hoping to have she told me (!)
          Very helpful to know about the SC2 vs SC3 level, as I would not have considered that as an option. We will proceed with our original plan, and then adjust if needed.
          One more question: Should I hold off on starting Latin for a little while until I know where she is reading/phonics wise, or would that not be necessary? She's excited to learn Latin so I want to begin soon if it makes sense.

          Blessings,
          Malin

          Comment


            #6
            Re: Stepping down from SC4 to SC3?

            That is a very good question! I would like for everything to be aligned in your lesson plans, but we also want to be sure you are teaching first-things-first (i.e., phonics before Latin).

            What if you start next week as planned, but teach only Traditional Spelling One, Week One and R&S Arithmetic, Week One? Spend the week exploring her basic Phonics & Math abilities. Take extra time with each lesson, word list, set of math facts, etc. Do this as an assessment, as well as lessons each day. Then report back. We can help you decide whether to press forward the following week with SC 4 & Latin or with a more intensive SC 2 Phonics refresher.

            If the former, you can simply review Week One Phonics & Math during those subjects, so you stay on track with everything else. You would proceed with SC 4 as written, including our introductory Latin. You would add her CS: Phonics K&1 "homework" to fill in gaps. I suspect that this will work well. This would be my preference for both of you.

            If, however, you find gaping holes in reading & math, you can back up accordingly, if only for an intensive semester of SC 2 remedial work.

            (Either way, you will want to order CS: Phonics K&1, so you have them ready.)

            Does this sound like a reasonable approach?

            Comment


              #7
              Re: Stepping down from SC4 to SC3?

              Perfect! And just to double check, by CS you mean the "Core Skills Phonics " books , correct?

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                #8
                Re: Stepping down from SC4 to SC3?

                Yes, Core Skills: Phonics, correct.

                We have become overly accustomed to abbreviating here, so this is a good reminder to spell things out, at least occasionally! Thanks, Malin.

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                  #9
                  Re: Stepping down from SC4 to SC3?

                  I think I'm catching up quickly on the jargon Thanks again!

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