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R&S Math 2/SC3

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    R&S Math 2/SC3

    My 8 year old is struggling quite a bit with R&S 2. We are still stuck in the first 30 lessons that review the math facts learned in first grade. I'm using the SC3 plans, but not really because we are moving even slower than those. I feel like I haven't hit on the right way to help him memorize the facts, especially subtraction. With visual aids (Cuisenaire rods, abacus) he can quickly recite the facts. I write the facts and he reads them aloud, he traces and copies the facts, and we play games and do drills with the flashcards. But when I remove the visual aids and hand him the R&S workbook page, he says he cannot remember the answers, even to problems such as 3-2=1. I have him do 3 or 4 rows a day, and it is very painful, and he says he must not be very smart because this is so hard. I know his processing speed is very slow, but that makes me wonder what should I expect from him then--how long should we spend on the workbook page and when should I move to the next lesson? Should I move to the next lesson? If his math facts recall is always going to be slow, how do we ever move forward?

    Recently he has started learning to play the piano, and I told him that eighth notes are twice as fast as quarter notes, and 16th notes are twice as fast as eighth notes. He said, "And are there 32nd notes?" I asked how did he know that 2x16=32, and he said because he has a Lego board that is 16x16. Also, we have a traditional Advent prayer that we pray 15 times per day. He said to me, "I know! We could pray it 5 times at breakfast, 5 times at lunch, and 5 times at dinner!" So how can he not remember what 5 minus 3 is?

    The Rod and Staff books will have a couple word problems here and there, such as George had 6 eggs and broke 3, etc. He can always come up with the answer to those quickly. But the R&S lessons are mostly rows of math facts, or of three digit addition or subtraction problems--pure number symbols, no visuals, no context--and that's where he just seems to hit a brick wall every day.

    A dyscalculia tutor recommended to me that I just allow him to use the visual aids for all the written exercises in the R&S workbook and over time he will (may?) learn the math facts that way. This would allow him to move ahead because he is very bright and can understand math concepts easily. It seems like giving up on him ever memorizing the facts. What do you recommend?
    Catherine

    2020-21
    DS17
    DS15
    DS13
    DD13
    DS8
    DD5
    DS 2.5

    Homeschooling 4 with MP
    2 in classical school

    #2
    Hi, Catherine.

    This is a child who has the dx of severe dyslexia, so all of this makes sense. It is the written symbol representation, not the concept, that becomes burdensome. His mind makes connections and conclusions better than most, as evidenced by your clear examples! Currently the written symbols slow down his abilities.

    We do not want to give up, but we also do not want to create an impasse. I would use the visual aids just as you are doing, but pair them with only 1-2 large, written facts on the board for him to copy to imprint upon his mind, rather than giving him rows to decipher on paper.

    Then progress to 2-3 mini-board fact drills to copy. Then 2-3 large board or mini-board fact drills with missing sums or missing addends. Include subtraction facts. When he begins to see his success and not dread written facts, only then add 1-2 facts written in large font on a full piece of paper. (Use the models from the R&S page but write them yourself on different paper.)

    When he is confident with these (after months?), you can return to the R&S written pages. Even then, it will be only 2-3 examples initially. Work up to one full row. Based on his background of very high intelligence but very protracted struggles with print, this may take a while. That is fine. We want him to receive an education, not a daily torture of his significant learning disabilities.

    Usually we would say, "Stay the course. Reduce the writing to only 1-2 rows." Because I happen to know the background in this situation, I would adapt further. We need more intermediary steps.

    You are not giving up; you are letting him "show" you the facts with your various visual tools and in oral recitation. Add in the nudging toward writing, and I think you will have a comfortable combination.

    While you wait for a return to greater paper-pencil practice, he can do relay races matching sums to fact families, flash card drills, and so on. We want him to know the facts, but if he learns them more effectively other ways right now, then this is acceptable for him.

    Btw, you can saved any unused rows of paper tasks for much later independent review, or use them with the next student in your homeschool.


    Adding this: I would love to see his mathematical prowess encouraged! Dominoes, dice games, Set (the game), visual-spatial puzzles, building kits, arithmetic read-alouds, and well-illustrated books about the way things work -- all of these will strengthen your 8yo's unique mind while showing him that he is not at all lacking in intelligence. Instead, he is highly adept in his thinking! If you foster *this* at age 8 and onward, as I know you do, then this young man will come to know himself in the best ways.

    All of the above will allow you to acknowledge both his real learning challenges and his real gifts, teach his math facts, and continue to move forward in a manner consistent with his bright mind.



    Last edited by cherylswope; 12-02-2020, 09:17 AM.

    Comment


      #3
      cherylswope Thank you so much. I printed your response out this morning and have been reading it and rethinking my approach all day. I think it would be very freeing to put away the drill sheets and just drill orally and with visuals, so that he can move on in the curriculum (ie, learn the triplet facts). He does actually know the facts we have studied so far; he doesn’t answer incorrectly with either the flash cards or the drill sheets. So the problem is mainly his slow processing speed and then secondly his anxiety over seeing a sea of facts on the page (even if he’s not expected to do them all).

      I think that I need to let him do less (very little?) drilling and explore some more interesting concepts—he wants to learn about negative numbers, multiplication/division, more music theory than in his piano lessons, etc. He has probably been really bored as I’ve been trying to increase his speed with the facts, somewhat fruitlessly!

      Thanks again, so much!
      Catherine

      2020-21
      DS17
      DS15
      DS13
      DD13
      DS8
      DD5
      DS 2.5

      Homeschooling 4 with MP
      2 in classical school

      Comment


        #4
        Would it work if you scribed for him? Would that reduce his writing load enough?

        I did this with long division today. My son was really upset, but when I offered to scribe, we made steady progress. It wasn't sunshine and roses, but it was progress.
        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

        Comment


          #5
          Originally posted by Colomama View Post
          Would it work if you scribed for him? Would that reduce his writing load enough?

          I did this with long division today. My son was really upset, but when I offered to scribe, we made steady progress. It wasn't sunshine and roses, but it was progress.
          Yes, it does help a lot for me to scribe for him. I've really been trying to target his difficulty with writing the answers, so I haven't been doing that for him lately. But, I think I need to pull back on that--scribing is a good option then.
          Catherine

          2020-21
          DS17
          DS15
          DS13
          DD13
          DS8
          DD5
          DS 2.5

          Homeschooling 4 with MP
          2 in classical school

          Comment


            #6
            Another thing that I did at your level was...buy a package of little number stamps. I think I found them for 99 cents at walmart. They were about the size of a pencil, thickness wise. So, they worked his pencil grasp, but in a fun way. So, instead of writing the answer, he stamped it. I found them in the scrapbooking area. The package was about the size of a deck of cards, hopefully that helps you find them.
            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

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by Colomama View Post
              Another thing that I did at your level was...buy a package of little number stamps. I think I found them for 99 cents at walmart. They were about the size of a pencil, thickness wise. So, they worked his pencil grasp, but in a fun way. So, instead of writing the answer, he stamped it. I found them in the scrapbooking area. The package was about the size of a deck of cards, hopefully that helps you find them.
              My son would love that! Thanks!
              Catherine

              2020-21
              DS17
              DS15
              DS13
              DD13
              DS8
              DD5
              DS 2.5

              Homeschooling 4 with MP
              2 in classical school

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by Colomama View Post
                Another thing that I did at your level was...buy a package of little number stamps. I think I found them for 99 cents at walmart. They were about the size of a pencil, thickness wise. So, they worked his pencil grasp, but in a fun way. So, instead of writing the answer, he stamped it. I found them in the scrapbooking area. The package was about the size of a deck of cards, hopefully that helps you find them.
                Colomama The stamps have been such a hit! My son did this in about 5 minutes this morning. No complaining at all. My MPKer is flying through her math with these stamps too. Thank you!

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                Catherine

                2020-21
                DS17
                DS15
                DS13
                DD13
                DS8
                DD5
                DS 2.5

                Homeschooling 4 with MP
                2 in classical school

                Comment


                  #9
                  Yay! It's a Christmas Miracle....math without tears.
                  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

                  Comment


                    #10
                    This stamping idea is genius! I'm going to try this for a student whose math is better than his writing! Thanks!

                    Comment

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