Trying to think long term...????....UPDATED WITH A QUESTION

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Trying to think long term...????....UPDATED WITH A QUESTION

Postby marypoppins » Thu Jan 17, 2008 12:34 pm

Hi everyone! I'm a new HOD convert. 8) (can't wait till Preparing becomes available! :D )

I may be getting ahead of myself (and Carrie :wink: ), but I'm trying to think long-term... My 2nd grade ds has been the guinuea pig the last 3 years of our homeschool. Now that I will also have a dd starting kindergarten next year, I really would like to just get a plan and try to stick to it instead of changing from year to year. I'm convinced that HOD is going to be just the ticket!

If I do LHFHG and Preparing Hearts next year, is there something else coming after Preparing Hearts for future years?? Assuming there is something else planned following PH, I guess I would do that and Beyond for the next year for my then 4th and 1st graders....Now, once my dd gets to 2nd and starts Bigger, at that point I could start combining them using the extension packs for the 5th grade ds, right?? If I did that, then I would skip whatever is scheduled for the second year following PH, but then I could pick that all up again using extension packs once younger dd reaches that level. Does that make sense?? If you've been able to follow this :wink: , do you have any comments or advice as to whether or not it's a better idea to do it this way, or just keep them separate and not interrupt the chronological cycle ds is going to start with Preparing? Hopefully that all makes sense :!:

And on the topic of Extension Packs, can you give me a little info. on how the manuals are set up for using the programs with older children?

Thanks much!!
Last edited by marypoppins on Sun Jan 20, 2008 12:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby blessedmomof4 » Thu Jan 17, 2008 12:53 pm

Maybe I wasn't reading carefully, but what grades are allyour kids in NOW? :D
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Postby marypoppins » Thu Jan 17, 2008 2:07 pm

So sorry! :oops:

They are currently in Pre-K and 2nd. My 2nd grader is currently doing MFW Adventures which is a broad overview of early American History and the 50 states. We are switching to HOD for next year.

This is what I'm looking at and trying to figure out:

'08-'09: LHFHG(Kinder) & PH (3rd grader)
'09-'10: Beyond(1st) & whatever follows PH(4th)
'10-'11: Bigger(2nd) & (5th)EITHER keep following the cycle for whatever follows PH, OR back up and combine him w/ younger dd in Bigger using the extension pkg. :?: :?: Ideas/comments? Better to follow the chronological cycle, or combine and go from there?

Hopefully that helps! I'm a charts and graphs/ visual kinda gal!
Thanks!
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Wow.

Postby netpea » Thu Jan 17, 2008 3:24 pm

wow, good question. I haven't thought about the upcoming years with them both in programs. Next year I'll be doing Bigger and Little Hearts. I am looking forward to seeing what others have to say here.
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Postby Carrie » Thu Jan 17, 2008 4:28 pm

Ah another kindred spirit! Over-planners of the year unite. :lol: I, too, love to plan ahead. It's embarassing how many different long-term plans I have made through the years! :oops:

That being said, I do know where you're coming from and can try to help you out a little.

After Preparing Hearts for His Glory, the next 4 guides will do a 4 year cycle of world history. Year 1 of that cycle will be Ancient History (Egypt, Greece, and Rome). Year 2 of that cycle will be Middle Ages, Renaissance, and Reformation. Year 3 of that cycle will pick up where the Renaissance/Reformation left off and go to approximately the 1800's. Year 4 of the cycle will be 1800's to present day.

Currently the plan is for each guide in the cycle to gradually increase the student's level of independence a little more, until much of the student's day will be fairly independent. Daily teaching time will be reserved for those things that require deeper thought, application, and discussion.

At this point the plan is to rotate teaching time by quarters through the various areas of emphasis (i.e. history, science, Bible, geography). This would allow the teacher time to delve deeply into a subject area for a quarter and then give a fresh feel with a new area of emphasis the next 9 week period. Of course, the student will still be working on all areas throughout the year, but the teacher time would be rotating by quarter. All of this is only in the general planning stages, so I hesitate to post it (and reserve the right to change it :wink: ), but I do love to toss ideas out and get feedback on them, so we'll put it out there.

In our future guides, some teaching time will also still be required daily or weekly for those subjects that don't lend themselves well to more independent learning (i.e. grammar, creative writing, some parts of math and literature study).

I say all of this to show you that with the design of our guides to come it will not be difficult to do more than one of our programs at once. We wish to enable homeschool families to spend the necessary time needed to school their little ones while their older ones are able to work much more independently. Often, we find that in keeping up with their older kiddos families have no time to devote to the little ones coming up. That is not to say that we will neglect needed time with the older ones, it will just be structured differently and reserved for key areas that most need instruction.

After using our programs for the younger years, students will certainly feel like they have had plenty of time spent with you which lays the foundation for future more independent work later.

I hope that helps a little.

Blessings,
Carrie
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Postby MamaMary » Thu Jan 17, 2008 5:15 pm

Carrie wrote:

At this point the plan is to rotate teaching time by quarters through the various areas of emphasis (i.e. history, science, Bible, geography). This would allow the teacher time to delve deeply into a subject area for a quarter and then give a fresh feel with a new area of emphasis the next 9 week period.


If I could have written a letter explaining what I wanted in a homeschool program this would have been the answer! Carrie, I just love how the Lord has annointed you in this ministry.

So many lit based programs look wonderful but they often overlook that families with a spread of ages don't have time to fully invest in two programs.
Mary, Mama to 4 amazing sons and wife to one incredible husband! Come check us out on the blog: http://www.homeschoolblogger.com/MamaMary/
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Postby blessedmomof4 » Thu Jan 17, 2008 5:51 pm

marypoppins wrote:So sorry! :oops:

They are currently in Pre-K and 2nd. My 2nd grader is currently doing MFW Adventures which is a broad overview of early American History and the 50 states. We are switching to HOD for next year.

This is what I'm looking at and trying to figure out:

'08-'09: LHFHG(Kinder) & PH (3rd grader)
'09-'10: Beyond(1st) & whatever follows PH(4th)
'10-'11: Bigger(2nd) & (5th)EITHER keep following the cycle for whatever follows PH, OR back up and combine him w/ younger dd in Bigger using the extension pkg. :?: :?: Ideas/comments? Better to follow the chronological cycle, or combine and go from there?

Hopefully that helps! I'm a charts and graphs/ visual kinda gal!
Thanks!


That helps a lot :D I was thinking, your kids aren't too far apart in age, did you consider combining them in the same program this coming fall? Or are they so far apart in ability that you don't think that would be practical? Maybe Beyond Little Hearts could be adjusted down for a Kindergartener (it's listed as age 6-8, so it might be enough for your 3rd grader with additions in grammar and math if needed).

I'm currently doing Bigger Hearts with a 3rd and 4th grader, and it is plenty for them both! It's just a thought. Have you looked at Carrie's placement charts on the website for help?

Also, you could use Little Hearts and Beyond Little Hearts (or Bigger Hearts if you found that more to your third grader's level) at the same time, as they all cover similar history topics and probably combine well.

If you plan to switch to Singapore math for your 3rd grader (if you're not already using it), make sure you use their placement tests to get the right level-Singapore is ahead of many other programs that I've seen. A word on Rod and Staff Grammar, I find it also pretty advanced, and the grade 2 book works fine with my 3rd and 4th grader who have not previously had formal grammar instruction.

I'm probably not helping at all :roll: I think too much! But I hope you do find a plan that works for you and your kids-I'm still working on mine! :P

Edit: about the extension packs, In Bigger Hearts, there is a daily reading schedule in the back of the guide and is meant for independent reading if your child is ready for it, so I am guessing future guides will have the same type of schedule, if I'm not mistaken :)

Lourdes
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Postby water2wine » Thu Jan 17, 2008 9:36 pm

I also have no help but just want to say you are not alone. I have the whole thing planned out as far as I can stretch it with all six of my kids. In fact I am in my mind trying to think how can I still keep them going beyond 8 th grade and after reading Carrie's description of what she is going to do with the history cycles I am starting to think that is not such a bad plan to just let her finish the entire cycle even though it will be below her age level on paper. I could see my oldest staying in until 10 th if I just beefed things up for her.

It may be wacky to plan like that but I always like to know where I am headed and that it is a place I will like when I get there. When you find something that really works and it is hard to get there, you want to stay there as long as you can. So I am with you on that.

Hope you find the best plan for your family!
All your children shall be taught by the LORD, and great shall be the peace of your children. Isaiah 54:13
~Six lovies from God~4 by blessing of adoption
-MTMM (HS), Rev to Rev, CTC, DITHR
We LOVED LHFHG/Beyond/Bigger/Preparing/CTC/RTR/Rev to Rev (HS)
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Postby Carrie » Fri Jan 18, 2008 11:08 am

Thanks ladies for the feedback. It is much appreciated! :D

I realized I didn't fully answer some of the questions about whether to combine or not as you go on through our progams. So, I'll address that a little more fully here.

I think if you have an age spread between children of 3 years or more it becomes difficult to place kiddos in the same program without significant adjustment in the areas of language arts, math, science, and writing. If you are only using the history/Bible portion of our programs then it would be easier to combine a larger spread of ages in that portion of our program (as those areas are not as age specific).

Some creative moms have taught the history from one of our programs to many of their kiddos at once and then used our other guides to teach the language arts and math portions that were more age specific and matched their children best.

Another option is to keep your kiddos in totally separate programs, which is what we have moved to at our house. What is best for your family really depends on whether you are a teacher that loves group discussion and wishes to have everyone all together for the history/Bible portion of your day (even though it may not be an exact match maturity or age-wise), or whether it's more important to you to have alone time with each kiddo and have the subject areas be mainly on target age and developmental wise. So, it becomes a personal philosophy issue too.

I think if you can keep the kiddos going in their own history cycle it is great, but it is not the most important consideration. Correct placement in language arts, math, and writing is very important in my opinion, and the rest of the areas can be a little more flexible.

Weighing where you are at with available teacher time also plays a huge role. At our house that has varied greatly from year to year depending on whether I have babies, toddlers, or someone learning to read (along with my older kiddos).

So, I know this doesn't give you a clear cut answer, but I want to assure you that with our programs you will have options that will work no matter what your family philosophy and situation may be, or how that may change from year to year.

Hope that helps in some small way!

Blessings,
Carrie
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Postby marypoppins » Fri Jan 18, 2008 10:12 pm

Carrie,

I am just so full of gratitude to you for taking the time to answer me so completely! Thank you, thank you!! It is really helping me sort everything through. I do have a few more questions where I really need your expert advice please!

As I spent more time this afternoon going over the samples and intro.'s for ALL of the HOD programs, I started wondering if I would be better off starting my ds in Bigger instead of Preparing hearts. :?: :?:

He will be 9 this summer, and going into 3rd grade next fall. He is very bright and an independent reader, however, he really does not like to write... He has just learned cursive, so hopefully this problem will improve in another year.

Also, this year we have been doing MFW Adventures as a first tast of American history. It is a very broad and light introduction. If I start him in Preparing next year, then we won't get back to American History for a while...I'm considering that maybe we need another year of American History before going into the cycle.

If I do end up going with Bigger, I would add in the extension package because he is such a strong reader. I'm wondering your opinion on this. And I would also like to know if the extension package is intended to be used in addition to the basic package or in lieu of the basic package?? Personally, I'd like to do both, but wondering how it's actually intended.

And if it makes a difference either way as to which program you think he would be best suited, we are not using Singapore for his math. (Although I will be using it with my younger dd.) He will be using Saxon 54 with the Dive CD.

Thanks again, so much, for all of your help!

P.S. I will also have a 5yo dd doing LHFHG.
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Postby marypoppins » Sun Jan 20, 2008 12:20 pm

bumping up for Carrie.. :D
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Postby Carrie » Sun Jan 20, 2008 3:50 pm

marypoppins,

Sorry it has taken me a little while to get back to you. I was trying to remember the specifics of what your 9 year old was currently doing and such. I found your previous posts using the boards search feature (which was very slick by the way) to refresh my memory first :) Thanks also for the additional information that you provided which really helps!

I do think your third grader could benefit from doing "Bigger Hearts..." to give him a year to strengthen his writing skills and also to cover American history more thoroughly. You are correct that you will not come back to it for awhile!

My third grade son is doing "Bigger..." this year and really enjoying it. He reads very well also, so I'm also having him read the science to himself. At times he reads the history spine to himself if I'm busy with others, which is a nice benefit. He can read much of the plans himself and move forward without always waiting on me.

Since you are already doing Rod and Staff 2, you'd want to just move on into Rod and Staff 3 (even though Rod and Staff 2 is scheduled in "Bigger..". As far as cursive writing goes, you could either use the poetry in "Bigger..." for cursive copywork, a little each day, or do another year of cursive introduction (only if needed) by using "Cheerful Cursive" as scheduled in "Bigger..." for you. For reading, it sounds like you would be ready for DITHR Level 2/3.

You'd want to continue with your own higher level of math also. One concern with placing your son in "Bigger..." may be whether you think the science is "enough" for him. We have thought it was fine for our third grader this year, but your opinion may differ. I mentioned it because originally you asked about BJU science, I believe. In the Extension Pack, you will have Tiner's Exploring Planet Earth also scheduled each week which beefs up the level and type of science topics covered, so in my opinion that would be enough. But, you'll have to know.

The Basic Package in "Bigger..." is structured differently from that in "Preparing Hearts..." in that the "Bigger...." Basic Package includes Rod and Staff English 2, Singapore Math, Hymns for a Kids Heart, and the Little Pillows devotional. The "Bigger..." Extension Package includes the independent history readers for your student to read on his own (according to the schedule in the Appendix). For "Bigger..." the read-alouds actually come from the Deluxe Package (or from your own choosing). Specific books aren't scheduled, just reccommended.

I hope this helps answer your questions.

Blessings,
Carrie
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Postby marypoppins » Sun Jan 20, 2008 6:53 pm

Thank you so much, Carrie! You have been more than helpful answering all of my questions.

The more I thought about it this weekend, the more at peace I felt about going with Bigger instead of Preparing Hearts. Doing MFW Adventures this year has been, *I* think, more along the lines of Beyond, as it uses Pioneers and Patriots and gives a similar intro. to American History. Following up with Bigger next year just makes sense. I can always add to the science, so I'm not worried about that. I really do feel at peace with the decision, and I thank you for helping me get it all sorted out!!
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Re: Trying to think long term...????....UPDATED WITH A QUEST

Postby 6timeboymom » Wed Mar 05, 2008 10:35 am

marypoppins wrote:I'm convinced that HOD is going to be just the ticket!


I'm sure it will be, too!! :-)
welcome to the boards, and to HOD! glad to have you here!! :-)
Darci
mom to 6 great boys-"they've got me surrounded!!"
using: as much HOD as possible! :wink:
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