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    Back for more help!

    I am feeling so lost on what to do with my girl, Ava. I posted a while back looking for placement help and so many of you were sooo helpful! I'd love to get your feedback on what I'm doing now with her...(as an informative note on her struggles since I feel like this is a safe place to share, we adopted her as an infant, but she was exposed to harmful substances in utero before adoption and was sedated in an orphanage with a fairly powerful sedative drug during the 5 months she was there, which have produced Sensory processing issues with her and ADHD and anxiety. She also has some significant learning disabilities, but her IQ is fine/high actually. Her auditory skills are off the charts and she will remember/memorize what she hears. She has relational difficulties and we have to directly teach her social skills. I could write a whole post on how tiring this is! But I'm sure so many of you understand. But despite her struggles, we have a VERY strong relationship. She is sweet and even when she's frustrated and acts out, she'll always come back to me and apologize.)

    Based on my previous post, I especially liked how Cheryl mentioned we were at a crossroads with our 9 year old, Ava. She is currently doing some of MP2 (couldn't do spelling at all, stalled on reading at Little House, and Latin has slowed down greatly for us...we need to go back and refresh again...she doesn't understand parts of speech at all, not sure if this is ok to keep going with that understanding?). So that leaves us with math, which is so hard for her...broken pencils all the time due to her frustration! And copywork, and the cursive, which honestly, she can't compose a sentence at all, so it's basically copy work for her, which, happily she can do in cursive (not print because of the spacing between words). That's where we are...after posting here before, this is what I've changed up to hopefully get us somewhere for next year...a mix of SC4 and SC3 maybe? But after today, maybe a completely different path, I just don't know...

    We started All About Spelling, level 1 and finished it. She can sound out CVC words and spell them. Forgets double ll/ss/ff but can mostly use k/c and c/ck correctly if I remind her to look again at the word if she happens to misspell it. On AAS level 2 today, we got to the silent e words (step 7) and she also did a page in Core Skills Phonics related to long vowel/short vowel words. She can't read them in isolation!!! She's guessing on the words, and frequently reading CVC words with a long vowel even though literally all our lessons today were on CVC and CVCe words. I just don't know what's going on...should I repeat phonics with her? Keep reviewing? Repeat with a different program? She can read aloud from Sarah Noble, not fluently, but she can read it and comprehends what she is reading. She has super LOW stamina for the reading, maybe she can stand 10-15 minutes of reading aloud? I am concerned that she can't read words in isolation and is still messing up CVC words. Her little sister can read more fluently than she can. Cheryl mentioned Barton in the last post...I'm so torn on whether to try that when it seems not much else has worked. It's a BIG investment, and I already have All about spelling...but Barton probably targets her particular needs better? I'm just unsure of investing in yet another phonics program.

    Speaking of reading...we shelved Little House for next year and she is reading aloud to me books similar to Hill of Fire. She reads about 10-15 minutes aloud/day.

    We purchased SC Writing book 1 and are making our way through the book. She told me she likes it! So, victory there!!! She has memorized all the rules, and she codes the sentences and copies them pretty well. She clearly has to work to do this, it is not coming easily. She also needs me to definitely help her spell her challenge sentence. But verbally she can compose a sentence/complete thought just fine. I have SC writing 2 waiting. We are finishing about 2 lessons/week in SC Writing book 1.

    Latin, again, she can't spell at all or answer the questions on her own. But her little sister will be starting the 2nd grade core next year...I'm nervous about Ava realizing she's been "passed", but I'm tempted to follow the SC4 Latin progression with her instead of continuing ahead with no mastery in terms of writing (she has the vocabulary orally memorized).

    Cursive...again, her inability to write down her thoughts has us stalled on anything but copywork. (For example, she could copy the months of the year in her NAC2 book the other day, but when asked to write her favorite month and why, she only wrote February, not a sentence, and spelled February like "FFvyoare")

    I guess this post is kind of all over the place, but my biggest question is the phonics...and also, we live in Mexico so my decisions are impacted by what I can access here. We had her tested at 5 years old, but should I pursue more testing? Possibly on our next visit to the US, which is in November? I'm kind of at a loss of what to do and feeling so inadequate.

    Next year, this is what I HOPE we can do:
    Follow the SC4 plans, but modifying the writing?? I'm not sure we'll finish SCWriting 2 by next school year. We'll see. If we do, then I should be able to follow the plans as written in SC4, correct. We are repeating NAC2 with the American quotes this time around.
    Continue with AAS with her...as slow as needed for mastery, maybe adding in Classical Phonics pages that relate to the spelling lesson?
    Should I review more phonics with her apart from All About Spelling?
    Should I back up/slow down on Latin with her if I can create a fun way to do it? Take a break and re-start with SC4? Continue on without spelling/writing mastery or understanding of parts of speech?
    We're going to follow all the extra subjects in SC4 with Ava. (Greek Myths, mammals, States/Capitals, Music, etc.)

    Again, thank you for your time, ladies! I needed to write out my thoughts, I think, as I process how to help Ava with school. I guess I should also officially just take the placement tests for her in terms of the SC levels...maybe she would place lower in the skills subjects and I could customize a level for her?? But do the SC4 enrichment subjects so she feels like she is doing Greek Myths like her big sister before her?

    On a side note: my new little guy (adopted 6 months ago from China, 6 years old) is doing SO WELL with SC Level A!!!! I need to post a review post for a testimonial. We LOVE it. He's on week 13 and has learned so much, like how to listen to a book and more! We're happy with progress over here.
    Emily J

    2018-2019 School Year
    DD (11)-MP 5 core
    DD (9)-SC 4
    DD (8)-MP 2 core
    DS (6)-SC B

    *Be of good cheer. Do not think of today's failures, but of the success that may come tomorrow. You have set yourself a difficult task but you will succeed if you persevere: and you will find joy in overcoming obstacles. Remember, no effort that we make to obtain something beautiful is ever lost. ~Helen Keller*

    #2
    Re: Back for more help!

    Originally posted by EmilyJ View Post
    I am feeling so lost on what to do with my girl, Ava. I posted a while back looking for placement help and so many of you were sooo helpful! I'd love to get your feedback on what I'm doing now with her...(as an informative note on her struggles since I feel like this is a safe place to share, we adopted her as an infant, but she was exposed to harmful substances in utero before adoption and was sedated in an orphanage with a fairly powerful sedative drug during the 5 months she was there, which have produced Sensory processing issues with her and ADHD and anxiety. She also has some significant learning disabilities, but her IQ is fine/high actually. Her auditory skills are off the charts and she will remember/memorize what she hears. She has relational difficulties and we have to directly teach her social skills. I could write a whole post on how tiring this is! But I'm sure so many of you understand. But despite her struggles, we have a VERY strong relationship. She is sweet and even when she's frustrated and acts out, she'll always come back to me and apologize.)

    Based on my previous post, I especially liked how Cheryl mentioned we were at a crossroads with our 9 year old, Ava. She is currently doing some of MP2 (couldn't do spelling at all, stalled on reading at Little House, and Latin has slowed down greatly for us...we need to go back and refresh again...she doesn't understand parts of speech at all, not sure if this is ok to keep going with that understanding?). So that leaves us with math, which is so hard for her...broken pencils all the time due to her frustration! And copywork, and the cursive, which honestly, she can't compose a sentence at all, so it's basically copy work for her, which, happily she can do in cursive (not print because of the spacing between words). That's where we are...after posting here before, this is what I've changed up to hopefully get us somewhere for next year...a mix of SC4 and SC3 maybe? But after today, maybe a completely different path, I just don't know...

    We started All About Spelling, level 1 and finished it. She can sound out CVC words and spell them. Forgets double ll/ss/ff but can mostly use k/c and c/ck correctly if I remind her to look again at the word if she happens to misspell it. On AAS level 2 today, we got to the silent e words (step 7) and she also did a page in Core Skills Phonics related to long vowel/short vowel words. She can't read them in isolation!!! She's guessing on the words, and frequently reading CVC words with a long vowel even though literally all our lessons today were on CVC and CVCe words. I just don't know what's going on...should I repeat phonics with her? Keep reviewing? Repeat with a different program? She can read aloud from Sarah Noble, not fluently, but she can read it and comprehends what she is reading. She has super LOW stamina for the reading, maybe she can stand 10-15 minutes of reading aloud? I am concerned that she can't read words in isolation and is still messing up CVC words. Her little sister can read more fluently than she can. Cheryl mentioned Barton in the last post...I'm so torn on whether to try that when it seems not much else has worked. It's a BIG investment, and I already have All about spelling...but Barton probably targets her particular needs better? I'm just unsure of investing in yet another phonics program.

    Speaking of reading...we shelved Little House for next year and she is reading aloud to me books similar to Hill of Fire. She reads about 10-15 minutes aloud/day.

    We purchased SC Writing book 1 and are making our way through the book. She told me she likes it! So, victory there!!! She has memorized all the rules, and she codes the sentences and copies them pretty well. She clearly has to work to do this, it is not coming easily. She also needs me to definitely help her spell her challenge sentence. But verbally she can compose a sentence/complete thought just fine. I have SC writing 2 waiting. We are finishing about 2 lessons/week in SC Writing book 1.

    Latin, again, she can't spell at all or answer the questions on her own. But her little sister will be starting the 2nd grade core next year...I'm nervous about Ava realizing she's been "passed", but I'm tempted to follow the SC4 Latin progression with her instead of continuing ahead with no mastery in terms of writing (she has the vocabulary orally memorized).

    Cursive...again, her inability to write down her thoughts has us stalled on anything but copywork. (For example, she could copy the months of the year in her NAC2 book the other day, but when asked to write her favorite month and why, she only wrote February, not a sentence, and spelled February like "FFvyoare")

    I guess this post is kind of all over the place, but my biggest question is the phonics...and also, we live in Mexico so my decisions are impacted by what I can access here. We had her tested at 5 years old, but should I pursue more testing? Possibly on our next visit to the US, which is in November? I'm kind of at a loss of what to do and feeling so inadequate.

    Next year, this is what I HOPE we can do:
    Follow the SC4 plans, but modifying the writing?? I'm not sure we'll finish SCWriting 2 by next school year. We'll see. If we do, then I should be able to follow the plans as written in SC4, correct. We are repeating NAC2 with the American quotes this time around.
    Continue with AAS with her...as slow as needed for mastery, maybe adding in Classical Phonics pages that relate to the spelling lesson?
    Should I review more phonics with her apart from All About Spelling?
    Should I back up/slow down on Latin with her if I can create a fun way to do it? Take a break and re-start with SC4? Continue on without spelling/writing mastery or understanding of parts of speech?
    We're going to follow all the extra subjects in SC4 with Ava. (Greek Myths, mammals, States/Capitals, Music, etc.)

    Again, thank you for your time, ladies! I needed to write out my thoughts, I think, as I process how to help Ava with school. I guess I should also officially just take the placement tests for her in terms of the SC levels...maybe she would place lower in the skills subjects and I could customize a level for her?? But do the SC4 enrichment subjects so she feels like she is doing Greek Myths like her big sister before her?

    On a side note: my new little guy (adopted 6 months ago from China, 6 years old) is doing SO WELL with SC Level A!!!! I need to post a review post for a testimonial. We LOVE it. He's on week 13 and has learned so much, like how to listen to a book and more! We're happy with progress over here.
    Congratulations on your adoption ❤️ And your success in SCA. What a sweet time.

    Congratulations on teaching Ava. I think we lose that victory a lot, as mom educators. We just see “what’s wrong” and forget how far we’ve come — and how different our children’s lives would be had we not pursued excellence for them. So pause and consider that.

    Hearing Ava’s struggles, of it were me, I would do the language portions of SC2 and SC3 with her and then a mash up of MP2 and SC4. First Start Reading would greatly benefit her in the phonics area, specifically with the tools and approach specific to Simply Classical at that level (I’m thinking here of the Moose Moments readers and “At The Farm” from the American Language Series). You need not repeat Storytime Treasures verbatim, but perhaps orally and quickly to fill any gaps and trouble spots and move along at a brisk pace. This would not entail much in the way of extra purchases. Digital lesson plans and the readers will add up to about $50-$100 all told. I’m sure Cheryl can give you a more specific plan than this, but that would be my basic approach.

    SC4 is exciting because it includes Core Skills Language Arts 1 & 2, as well as lesson plans to target those areas. Both books are $10 each on Amazon and the digital lesson plans are $12 (I believe). I have no suggestions on using Barton.

    So, basic plan:
    SC2 language arts and/or reading (quickly)
    SC3 language arts and/or reading (moderate to brisk pace)
    SC4 language and/or reading + select MP2 activities (moderate to slow pacing)

    As for Math, take several weeks to just do a thorough review of the material you’ve covered so far. You might do this orally to cut down on writing. The worksheets/black lines pages for Rod and Staff 1 are very helpful for this as well. After you are satisfied she knows it, move into the next phase of Rod and Staff Math at half pace, making sure to achieve mastery of material before moving on. This is the slow and steady approach many struggling learners need.

    Simply copying NAC cursive/copybook selections is fine. When she is asked to give original answers, discuss them together orally and then write her oral answer in cursive on a white board. She can then copy that into her cursive notebook. This builds practical awareness of how to answer independently. You might also pick up the cursive practice sheets, if you do not already own them. They are a great resource.

    Digital lesson plans for SC4 Latin (Prima) might also be a good idea. This doesn’t require any extra purchase except the digital plans themselves. You can review all the Prima work she’s covered so far per the SC4 pacing and then proceed with the SC4 Latin Plans at a new pace (vs the MP2 pacing).

    Did I forget anything? Hope this is at least a little helpful. You’ve got a lot to manage right now. Take a good breath (or two) and refocus. Ava will be just fine. She just needs a little help.
    “If I should fall even a thousand times a day, a thousand times, with peaceful repentance, I will say immediately, Nunc Coepi, ‘Now, I begin.’.”

    ~Venerable Bruno Lanteri
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    Boy Wonder 13 ...SC7/8 + MP4 + Rod & Staff 4/5 + Seton 5
    Joy Bubble 11 ...SC7/8 + MP4 + Rod & Staff 4/5 + Seton 5
    Cuddly Cowboy 9 ...SC7/8 + MP4 + Rod & Staff 3/4/5 + Seton 4
    Sassafras 5 ...MPK + Seton K

    Comment


      #3
      Re: Back for more help!

      Okay, went back to your original thread and found this:
      My second daughter turns 9 next month...and we have struggled since the beginning. She has been tested and we have been given diagnoses...ADHD, ODD, dysgraphia, dyslexia, dyscalculia. We don't medicate her yet, but are not against the idea as she ages, so far in her life we have put in place therapies and such to help her with areas that she struggles. She is off the charts with her verbal skills and her auditory skills. VERY asynchronous learner. She has the capability to learn at high levels, but her skills are low.
      This changes things a bit. Definitely wait for Cheryl! I did not realize she had been officially diagnosed. I don’t know, honestly, how much that changes my original answer, given that Simply Classical is targeted at struggling learners like Ava (and my own children) but I wanted to include this caveat to keep in mind as you read my original response to this post.
      “If I should fall even a thousand times a day, a thousand times, with peaceful repentance, I will say immediately, Nunc Coepi, ‘Now, I begin.’.”

      ~Venerable Bruno Lanteri
      ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
      Boy Wonder 13 ...SC7/8 + MP4 + Rod & Staff 4/5 + Seton 5
      Joy Bubble 11 ...SC7/8 + MP4 + Rod & Staff 4/5 + Seton 5
      Cuddly Cowboy 9 ...SC7/8 + MP4 + Rod & Staff 3/4/5 + Seton 4
      Sassafras 5 ...MPK + Seton K

      Comment


        #4
        Re: Back for more help!

        I like everything Anita suggested!

        You can wait on Latin and start fresh in SC 4.

        A few thoughts:

        You are wise to go back with the phonics, even as you teach other areas. Anita's progression makes sense. So does updated testing.

        And, yes, we do understand. You are doing hard, daily work!

        I agree with you that the SC placement tests could be helpful, and they're free! You might also look at Myself & Others for more explicit social skills training. You can teach this as a 14-week "unit" or start at the beginning and work through.

        With reading, 10-15 min twice daily at a place of success is far better than prolonged agony or patterns of frustration. Even if you need to target SC 1 phonics right now, you will want it to be successful and consistent.

        Regardless of your decisions, you will need to adjust your own expectations (so hard to do!), and work toward daily small doses of achievement.

        Agreeing with Anita, slow and steady. You are loving SC A. You can pattern Ava's day in the same way. Little pieces of enjoyable, story-based success. They do add up! It is often when we reach for too much that we achieve too little. Give yourself and Ava the freedom to be just where she needs to be.
        Last edited by cherylswope; 03-14-2018, 09:29 PM.

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