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Placement help. Again.

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    Placement help. Again.

    Let me preface this with I'm a two-time (I think two) drop out of SC with Kate. I have my excuses, but we'll leave it at that. For some background, Kate is 8 ½ (almost) and has Down syndrome. She is very language delayed as well as very fine motor delayed. We are working casually through R&S A workbook, plus one of their 4 year old workbooks (the ones before you get to the ABC workbooks), and she is overall compliant and willing to do those, which tells me they are an appropriate level for her. Physically, she is the size of a smaller 5 year old - she is moving into size 6 clothes (size 7 Ts as her torso is proportionally more appropriate to what her height would be if her legs and arms were typical/proportional length.

    Cognitively, though, she is showing growth. She has begun to answer questions with spontaneous answers (rather than use providing, say, two options for a question, which we still have to do as well). It's still an emerging skill but a huge leap in development. She's also starting to help sort and put away (including wanting to learn how to hang things) her clean laundry. The other night she helped me load the dishwasher. So, I can tell cognitively she's growing. But, her language and fine motor really hold her back. She rides a 2-wheel bike with training wheels like it's nobody's business. She can catch with two hands. She runs and jumps and climbs and swims. Her gross motor is good (we are working on skipping and such - that takes a bit more coordination). She plays with her younger brother. One of her favorite shows is Magic School Bus (her second favorite is Brady Bunch), so she's growing up from the younger shows (she still likes Curious George and such, but she also is liking the shows aimed at slightly older, but still younger elementary rather than the PreK/K aimed shows).

    She doesn't like new things ... she gets stuck with the same things - for instance, she has her favorite Brady Bunch episodes; she resists new books (I have to sandwich them between known/loved books). She does better with noise/loudness/people than she used to, but she still likes to retreat (and we allow her to; it's good she knows when she's had enough and can retreat instead of staying and melting). In other words ... she's all over the map.

    I pulled out SC C and did the readiness assessment for her. The Language, as expected, was almost non-existent - 21%. Cognitive was 73% yes and 18% emerging. Social-Emotional was 73% yes and 27% emergent (some were a bit difficult because they assumed more language/ability to express herself than she has). Fine motor, as expected, was low - 47% yes and 40% emerging. Gross motor was 57% yes and 38% emerging.

    I think it's the perfect level for her. But, I think it's way too much writing/fine motor work for her, at least based on what we do right now. We tried it this past fall and it was a lot of struggle in terms of cooperation/willingness. She does have the typical Down syndrome "I don't want to do the hard work" approach to school. I also have the added bonus that her younger brother is pretty much ready to do MP JrK this fall. There seems to be a lot of overlap between the two, but JrK (and I might be mistaken as I've only looked at the sample) seems to have a bit less fine motor work each day/week?

    And, in terms of reading, FSR will be more of a penmanship program for both Kate and her brother; we are using All About Reading 1, slowly, with Kate and the plan is to do the same with Oliver. (I've used/am using All About Spelling with all three of my big boys, and used some All About Reading with the youngest of the three. It's just what we do.) All that to say, I'm not sure we need to do the FSR A at the end of SC C if our phonics instruction is coming from AAR. Thoughts? And thoughts on using Jr. K with both Kate and her brother, and just pull in the suggestions on how to approach different subjects from SC C?

    I apologize for this being so long. I feel that the updated (or new depending on who reads this) information on Kate helps more than just listing her scores on the readiness assessments.
    Brit

    Catholic mom to five
    2019-2020:
    Ds '01 - College freshman: Thomas Aquinas College
    Ds '03 - 10th grade: MPOA Algebra 2, and a bunch of other stuff
    Ds '06 - 8th: MP Tiner science (chemistry, physics, and astronomy), 8M lit, 8M Exploring Planet Earth, ancient history, OLVS 8 Catechism
    Dd '10 (Down syndrome) - JrK with little brother and BOB books
    Ds '15 - JrK with big sister

    #2
    Good morning, Brit.

    I like your idea of combining your two children for JrK, using SC adaptations & techniques for Kate, and omitting FSR A for Kate.

    At the front of your SC guides, you will find fine-motor and language suggestions. You might use these to nudge her along developmentally on days (or moments) when she does not have "school."

    Given the language and fine-motor delays, you might teach together this year and then more "as written" next year when she will be a little stronger in those areas.

    It is not uncommon for our students with intellectual delay to go through the Readiness levels twice. Examples:
    SC A in small bites first, then SC A as written.
    SC B without the workbooks, then SC B as written.

    You might also look at Myself & Others Book One for your combined kiddos this year. Book One has no writing, is brief to teach, and will reinforce all of the good things you are beginning to see around the house. Bonus: more good literature each week to boost language and cognition!



    Comment


      #3
      Originally posted by cherylswope View Post
      Good morning, Brit.

      I like your idea of combining your two children for JrK, using SC adaptations & techniques for Kate, and omitting FSR A for Kate.

      At the front of your SC guides, you will find fine-motor and language suggestions. You might use these to nudge her along developmentally on days (or moments) when she does not have "school."

      Given the language and fine-motor delays, you might teach together this year and then more "as written" next year when she will be a little stronger in those areas.

      It is not uncommon for our students with intellectual delay to go through the Readiness levels twice. Examples:
      SC A in small bites first, then SC A as written.
      SC B without the workbooks, then SC B as written.

      You might also look at Myself & Others Book One for your combined kiddos this year. Book One has no writing, is brief to teach, and will reinforce all of the good things you are beginning to see around the house. Bonus: more good literature each week to boost language and cognition!


      I really like the idea of doing JrK with the two and then possibly doing SC C (again in a sense) with Kate the following year. My biggest struggle with her is meeting her cognitively and helping her grow there while still having to accommodate for the language and fine motor delays. I know one day she'll be able to write and one day she'll be able to speak. But it is so slow going.

      I'll go through the fine motor and language suggestions and make a list. They would probably be good for both her and her brother (he has had speech therapy too (we are on an extended break from speech at the moment because I desperately needed a break) as he had a tongue tie; both he and Kate have been making big strides while on break).
      Brit

      Catholic mom to five
      2019-2020:
      Ds '01 - College freshman: Thomas Aquinas College
      Ds '03 - 10th grade: MPOA Algebra 2, and a bunch of other stuff
      Ds '06 - 8th: MP Tiner science (chemistry, physics, and astronomy), 8M lit, 8M Exploring Planet Earth, ancient history, OLVS 8 Catechism
      Dd '10 (Down syndrome) - JrK with little brother and BOB books
      Ds '15 - JrK with big sister

      Comment


        #4
        This sounds good. She may always have starkly stronger/weaker contrasting areas. My children certainly do. She is blooming nonetheless and is blessed to be in your home. This could be a fun year for her alongside her little brother.

        Remember, too, that because of all of your "Little Wonders" within your own home, you have one of the most beautiful cognitive microcosms of classical education. From a prospective freshman at Thomas Aquinas to a young lady with Down syndrome learning her letters and learning to help with the dishwasher, your children are benefiting from everything you do for them and from all the love poured into them through you.

        Cheering you on in this unique season of your life --

        Comment


          #5
          Thank you, Cheryl, for your encouragement. I've been so mired down in all the trees, I don't even remember there's a forest around me. This has definitely been a hard season - my oldest's high school years, which coincided with my youngest's first three years of life (he's a joy and a hoot and was such an intense baby; I was essentially stuck in the house, with him attached to me, for almost three years). I feel there is finally coming a new season where maybe I can get a little bit of a breather (however much that is with two remaining teen boys, Kate, and her younger brother in the house ).

          By the way ... 1. Do you know when the new edition of your book is due out? I think I permanently loaned mine out (which is perfectly fine, as I am sure it has blessed a least one family other than my own) and look forward to the updated book. And 2. If I could attend only one day of GHC to hear you talk, which talk would you recommend? We are thinking of going for one day (not sure what all the other people will do all day) and I'm not sure which day is the best.
          Brit

          Catholic mom to five
          2019-2020:
          Ds '01 - College freshman: Thomas Aquinas College
          Ds '03 - 10th grade: MPOA Algebra 2, and a bunch of other stuff
          Ds '06 - 8th: MP Tiner science (chemistry, physics, and astronomy), 8M lit, 8M Exploring Planet Earth, ancient history, OLVS 8 Catechism
          Dd '10 (Down syndrome) - JrK with little brother and BOB books
          Ds '15 - JrK with big sister

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by MyLittleWonders View Post
            Thank you, Cheryl, for your encouragement. I've been so mired down in all the trees, I don't even remember there's a forest around me. This has definitely been a hard season - my oldest's high school years, which coincided with my youngest's first three years of life (he's a joy and a hoot and was such an intense baby; I was essentially stuck in the house, with him attached to me, for almost three years). I feel there is finally coming a new season where maybe I can get a little bit of a breather (however much that is with two remaining teen boys, Kate, and her younger brother in the house ).

            By the way ... 1. Do you know when the new edition of your book is due out? I think I permanently loaned mine out (which is perfectly fine, as I am sure it has blessed a least one family other than my own) and look forward to the updated book. And 2. If I could attend only one day of GHC to hear you talk, which talk would you recommend? We are thinking of going for one day (not sure what all the other people will do all day) and I'm not sure which day is the best.
            Good morning, Brit. My apologies for not seeing the questions after your first paragraph!

            1. We do not yet have a firm release date for the new edition, but it is coming! Several of us are reading through one more time for a final edit. We will announce here when the book is available.

            2. GHC -- It depends on what you would prefer to hear!
            - Thursday is the shortest day of sessions (2:30pm-8:00pm) with a concert that evening 8-9pm. My Thursday session 7-8pm is an overview of classical Christian education and is usually my largest audience.

            - Friday is the longest day of sessions (8:30am-8:00pm). My Friday 11am-12pm session "What Good are Labels?" addresses the importance of knowing the "why" of a child's learning/behavior difficulties through a good evaluation and diagnosis. My Friday 5:30-6:30pm explores the benefits of homeschooling a child with special needs with tips for greater success in the homeschool setting.

            - Saturday sessions (8:30am-5:00pm) might be the most applicable of my sessions for you to attend. The first is 10-11am, Classical Ed & Special Needs: Three Case Studies in which we explore the historical understanding of education with a view to children with special needs. The second, 4-5pm, is "Finding the Sweet Spot: Evaluating & Teaching Any Child" and might be helpful for you with your Kate. Bonus: In between on Saturday is the always-inspiring and entertaining panel called "Classical Education: Unhinged!" In California the panel is 1-2pm Saturday with Andrew Pudewa, Martin Cothran, Dr. Carol Reynolds, and Dr. Christopher Perrin.

            So my shorter answer is that Saturday might be best for you if you can only choose one day. You can view the entire schedule here. Currently it is only tentative but will be marked Final when finalized.

            Sheet1 2019 - CA Homeschool Convention Updated - 05-02-2019 - Preliminary Schedule Only - Final will be marked "Final" Homeschool Help Desk / Homeschool 101 Track Parenting Track Teen Track Classical Track Charlotte Mason Track College Track Special Needs Track Thursday, June 13th 1:30 PM,Regi...

            Comment


              #7
              Thank you, Cheryl! I will wait patiently for the new edition and the announcement that it's ready. And Saturday sounds like a really good day to attend. I'd love to be able to find the sweet spot with teaching Kate (part of my difficulty arises from being a rule follower, which means if something is in the plans, it has to be done that way and that day; it is hard for me to deviate because then I feel I've messed up and give up on plans and feel there must be a better way - sigh - homeschooling definitely seems to be a good way to become intimately familiar with my own shortcomings).
              Brit

              Catholic mom to five
              2019-2020:
              Ds '01 - College freshman: Thomas Aquinas College
              Ds '03 - 10th grade: MPOA Algebra 2, and a bunch of other stuff
              Ds '06 - 8th: MP Tiner science (chemistry, physics, and astronomy), 8M lit, 8M Exploring Planet Earth, ancient history, OLVS 8 Catechism
              Dd '10 (Down syndrome) - JrK with little brother and BOB books
              Ds '15 - JrK with big sister

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by MyLittleWonders View Post
                - sigh - homeschooling definitely seems to be a good way to become intimately familiar with my own shortcomings).
                I think much of parenting is this way!



                Comment


                  #9
                  Originally posted by cherylswope View Post

                  I think much of parenting is this way!


                  Very true!
                  Brit

                  Catholic mom to five
                  2019-2020:
                  Ds '01 - College freshman: Thomas Aquinas College
                  Ds '03 - 10th grade: MPOA Algebra 2, and a bunch of other stuff
                  Ds '06 - 8th: MP Tiner science (chemistry, physics, and astronomy), 8M lit, 8M Exploring Planet Earth, ancient history, OLVS 8 Catechism
                  Dd '10 (Down syndrome) - JrK with little brother and BOB books
                  Ds '15 - JrK with big sister

                  Comment

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