MTMM for High School: Science Path Questions

Pondering Placement for High School Science

MTMM for High School: Science Path Questions

We are using HOD’s Revival to Revolution this year. My son will be using MTMM for 9th grade this coming year. He said he would like to do something different for science this year than chemistry. So, we were thinking of having him do biology. In doing this, would we need to use the health resources from WH as well? I know you said this was a good pairing science-wise. I really don’t want things to become disjointed for him. He reads and comprehends very well above his level, and he will turn 15 shortly. We will not make it through all the guides. So, as we go through and incorporate things one year, this may open up room for something else another year. At the same time, we don’t want to weigh him down with too much. Would adding the health with the biology in MTMM be too heavy?

Sincerely,

“Ms. Please Help with High School Science Decisions”

Dear “Ms. Please Help with High School Science Decisions,”

As you look at your son’s year and your decision to use MTMM for his freshman year, we want to take care not to switch out so many things and add so much that MTMM actually becomes more difficult and heavy than simply using World Geography for his freshman year. With that in mind, I would lean toward using as much of MTMM as written.

For your son’s high school science, I’d add to the MTMM science and leave the WG, WH, and USI high school science plans intact.

The science in MTMM is actually a pretty good mix of chemistry, physics, and biology with some geology thrown into the mix through the study of fossils. It is a great year of study and quite different than the science the students have just come out of in Rev2Rev. I would encourage your son to use the science in MTMM as written and add either the Chemistry 101, Biology 101, or Physics 101 dvds on his free 5th day – choosing whichever set best suits his fancy. I would leave the sciences in World Geography, World History, and US1 intact for the time when he arrives at those guides. By the time he gets to his senior year, and is likely using US1, we can look more deeply at his interests and plan his science for that year accordingly

High School Literature for MTMM

For literature, I would either use DITHR Level 6/7/8 with the 7/8 DITHR Boy set, or he could instead use the boy literature set from World Geography along with DITHR 6/7/8 Student Book (and then the following year do only the BJU lit along with World Geography, thus lightening his load for literature for the World Geography year). If you did use the Boy Lit set from World Geography with DITHR, you would just plug each of these books into whatever DITHR genre fits best and teach your way through the DITHR unit with the book. I would stay with WWTB Vol. II as scheduled in MTMM for composition and do the Rod and Staff English as scheduled in MTMM. This combination will give him one full credit in lit/comp.

High School Economics for MTMM

For Economics, he could either add the Economics study from US2, or he could simply do what is scheduled within MTMM and wait to do Economics until his senior year of high school. Either option would work.

High School Foreign Language for MTMM

I would plan to add Getting Started with Spanish from the World Geography guide, which you can do without needing the World Geography guide. Simply have him do one lesson a day of Getting Started with Spanish. This will earn him 1/2 credit in Spanish I.

High School Credits for MTMM

I would leave the rest of MTMM as written. His credits then would be as follows:
1 credit in U.S. History II
1 credit in English (including lit, comp, and grammar)
1 credit in Science with Lab
1/2 credit in Spanish I
1/2 credit in Economics (if you add the study from US2 and 1 full credit if you also do the Farmer’s Market)
1 credit in Math (Algebra I or above)
1/2 credit in Bible (up to one full credit if he is also doing Bible reading outside of school time)
1/2 credit in Fine Arts: Drawing from Nature (if he adds additional nature journal entries during the week or during the summer)

Looking Ahead 

Hope this helps! Just for reference, for each year of HOD high school study once he reaches the official high school guides, your son will earn 6 1/2 to 7 credits each year. So, you can see the credits he will be earning through MTMM will be comparable. Most states require between 18-24 credits to graduate with this requirement differing from state to state.

Blessings,
Carrie

Using MATHhelp.com for High School Algebra II

From Our House to Yours

Using MATHhelp.com for High School Algebra II

Riley and I are using MATHhelp.com for high school Algebra II this year. MATHhelp.com is one of the math programs recommended by Heart of Dakota. We are both really enjoying it!  Riley likes the teacher in the video lessons. He says the lessons are clear with sequential steps that are easy to follow. I would agree! The teacher is just so earnest and likable as well. He stands at the whiteboard and talks through each step, writing as he talks. The charts he uses to plug in information for formulas are quite innovative! He finds ways to make difficult formulas seem easy to use. Riley always did fine with math, but just never really enjoyed it. Well, with MATHhelp.com, he is truly enjoying his math!  I am too!

How to Find Out More About MATHhelp.com

On the MATHhelp.com website, you can watch sample videos and view sample lessons. You can also go through their ‘guided tour’ and ‘homeschool user guide’ for a quick overview. These samples give good information about MATHhelp.com. By watching the videos, looking at the lessons, and listening to the guided tour, you will more than likely be able to tell quite quickly if MATHhelp.com will be a good fit for you and your student. Much like the actual videos and daily work we do, these initial ‘helps’ given are efficient and time conscious. They won’t take long for you to go through, and they will make it clear if MATHhelp.com will work for you and your student.

Steps for Using MATHhelp.com Each Day

The steps are fairly easy for using MATHhelp.com. First, we print the course notes. These are short and contain any formulas or special notes needed. Second, we watch the Instruction video. We don’t take any additional notes as we watch. Third, we work through the Practice problems on paper while looking at them on the computer. If we get stuck, we click to see the problem fully worked out on the computer. Fourth, on the computer we look over the Worksheet problems with their fully worked solutions. We don’t actually work through these problems, but rather look for the unique, one-off kind of problems and how they are solved. Fifth, Riley does the Test. On harder lessons, I sometimes do the test too, and we compare answers. These are multiple choice and graded by the computer. Done!

In Christ,
Julie

P.S. Keep in mind you can easily modify these steps if you prefer! For example, your student can print and complete the Worksheet problems each day. Or, you can assign the reviews if you’d like!  This is all very flexible! I’ve just shared one possible way to approach this that we are enjoying!

 

How can we squeeze what we have left for high school into 2 years?

Dear Carrie

How can my daughter squeeze American History, Economics, Government, and Geography into her 2 remaining years of high school?

My daughter has two years of high school left after this year. This is her first year using Heart of Dakota. She is doing World History and loving it! Sadly, she still needs American History, Economics, Government, and Geography. We are trying to figure out how she can squeeze all of this into her 2 remaining high school years. I had two ideas. One, she could do HOD’s USI and USII, which include Economics and Government. Then, maybe she could squeeze in a 1/2 credit Geography course (from a different curriculum) over the summer? Or, could just Mapping The World with Art be a ‘squeeze-in’? But, I hate for her to miss HOD’s World Geography guide and all those amazing books. She really cannot tell you where anything in the world is located.

So, that brings me to idea two. She could do HOD’s World Geography (in its entirety) and one of the American History guides. Then, I’d have her squeeze in reading a few books for the other part of American History to get the full story. Her 8th grade brother is going to be doing MTMM this next year. Maybe I could put her in that with him (with extensions and beefing up)? Then, I could have her do World Geography the next year with him. She could then just squeeze in some books to get the first part of American History. Does this sound doable? She will already be graduating a year late…she will be 19 1/2. So, we really do only have 2 more years of school to squeeze it all in.  Do you have any ideas how to squeeze this all in, and what guide to skip? Thanks!

Sincerely,

“Ms. Please Help Us Squeeze What We Have Left for High School Into 2 Years”

Dear “Ms. Please Help Us Squeeze What We Have Left for High School Into 2 Years,”

Thanks so much for sharing about your daughter! We have some good options for her to complete what she has left for high school. We might even be able to avoid the ‘squeeze’ feeling! Since she is doing the World History Guide now, and I am assuming it is going well, it would be quite a bit of backward motion to go back to MTMM. It would be better for her to stay within the realm of the high school guides instead, just to keep forward motion and to keep her well-placed skill-wise.

Option 1: World Geography for 11th, American History I (with Government) for 12th, with Economics As a Slight ‘Squeeze-In’

With this in mind, I see a couple of options as possibilities. One option would be to do the World Geography next year for her junior year and then to do the first American History guide with Government for her final year. This would mean she would need to add as a slight ‘squeeze-in’ Economics. It might be possible to do this either with World Geography or with American History, depending on whether she does all of the credits offered within each guide. It is typically acceptable to study a portion of American History, as long as a full credit is earned in that study. So, if she did not get to the final American History guide that would be alright. She would still earn a full credit of American history for completion of the first American history guide. She would also earn another 1/2 credit for Government.

Option 1: American History I (with Government) for 11th, American History II (with Economics) for 12th, with Geography… No ‘Squeeze-In’ Required

Another option would be to do the last two American History guides (including Government and Economics) and omit the World Geography Guide. In this scenario, you would have to earn the Geography 1/2 credit you mentioned is required. There is quite a bit of mapping within both the American History guides. I’m not sure if your daughter had any mapping or geography her freshman year, but there is some in the World History guide as well, and there are definitely geography concepts regularly discussed. So, I am thinking that among the 3 HOD high school guides she would earn her 1/2 credit of Geography.

Which two HOD guides do you want her to have before she graduates?

So, then it is just a matter of deciding which two HOD guides you desire for her to have before she graduates. Do you desire for her to have the World Geography and the first American History guide? Or, do you desire for her to follow the last two American History guides? Either plan will work. If she does do the World Geography guide, I would have her do it next year, followed by the American History I guide her senior year. You could also look to determine which extra credits in the guides are most helpful (i.e. Logic, Foreign Language, Bible, World Religion and Cultures, etc.). It may also help to look at the sciences in the guides and see if she is in need of those as well. This may provide more clarity.

Either plan will work, so I’d choose the one that makes the last two years be less of a ‘squeeze’!

If she does not do the final HOD guide, she will miss British Literature. However, with the titles read for literature within the World Geography and the World History Guides, a 1/2 credit in British Literature could be awarded (alleviating that problem). The first American History guide will contain American Literature, also solving that problem. So, it truly is a matter of deciding which two guides fit her needs best! If you choose to have your daughter do the last 2 American History Guides, then she will cover Economics (earning 1/2 credit) within the final American History Guide. So, you won’t have to add that yourself! I’d just choose the plan that makes the last two years be less of a ‘squeeze’ and get to enjoying your remaining high school years together!

Blessings,
Carrie

P.S. Check out www.transcriptmaker.com as an inexpensive, easy way to create a professional transcript!

 

Setting Up for U.S. History II and Getting Ready for Your Last Year

From Our House to Yours

Setting Up for U.S. History II

So, I’ve placed my children, had my Heart of Dakota  ‘box day,’ and am setting up for high school U.S. History II (USII). My first step is to read through USII’s Introduction/Overview, Appendix, and first week or month of plans. This helps me envision my year and understand what my guide covers. Each high school credit includes its own specific course description, required resources, course materials, and suggested grading. So, taking time to read through these is time well spent.

Setting Up the Front of My U.S. History II Binder

First, I slide the preprinted full color U.S History II Journal cover in the front of my 1  1/2 inch three-ring binder. Second, I print the Overview of the guide off the Internet (click here). I use the Table of Contents as my attendance record, noting the dates we completed each unit (i.e. Unit 1:  Sept. 2-6, 2019). Likewise, I include the Earning Credits and Possible Grading Scale in my binder to show how credit was earned.  Third, I print the first week of plans (click here), which is a nice overview. Some states require a completed portfolio for meeting with a principal or umbrella school. The Introduction and first week of plans give an excellent overview for this. (Carrie gives permission for the Introduction and First Week of Plans to be printed or copied for portfolio compilation. However, any other photocopies or retyping of plans would be a copyright infringement.)

Setting Up the Rest of My U.S. History II Binder

I continue setting up the rest of my U.S. History II binder. Behind the First Week of Plans, I place USII’s notebook pages inside clear page protectors. Throughout the homeschool year, my student takes out each notebook page he is using for the week. Then, when he is done with each page, he simply puts it back in a page protector for safe keeping. This makes a beautiful keepsake of our year of spent doing U.S. History II!

Preparing for the Living Library Extra Credit Work

If my student is doing the U.S. History II (USII) Living Library 10% extra credit option (which is an option I personally love for my children to do), from the USII Appendix, I photocopy the “Triple-Entry Journal Assignment” sheet. I have my student glue it in the front of a bound and lined composition book of his choice. This way, he can refer to the example to know the format expected for his journal assignments. I simply keep the notebook with his completed triple-entry journal assignments on hand as a record of his extra credit work for the year.

Setting Up the Book of Centuries’ Binder

For the Book of Centuries (BOC), the USII Introduction suggests using a 1 inch three-ring binder. This already comes preprinted and three-hole punched.  So, I just slide the preprinted full color BOC Notebook cover in the front of my binder. Then, I place the three-hole punched BOC pages in the binder. (If you used WG, WH, and/or U.S. the years before, you’ve already done this step). Then, I add the extra pages needed for USII. As many different BOC pages are used at a time and there is gluing involved, I don’t put these in clear page protectors.  Next, following the “Course Materials” section in the USII Introduction, I print the U.S. History II Timeline Figures from the Timeline Figures CD. I put these in a pile in order and staple the top left corner to keep them together. Last, I slide the stapled together timeline pages inside the front of my BOC binder’s pocket.

A Few Other Noteworthy Things About Setting Up for the U.S History II Course

Throughout the year, my student follows the USII daily plans to make photocopies for Key Decisions in U.S. History: Volume 2 and from Great Documents from U.S. History: Volume II. I help with making these copies the first time they come up in the plans. Then, my student follows the directions to do this on his own. We file his completed maps in the back of his U.S History II journal. I also let my student know he will need a DVD player for The American Testimony DVD Set 2. He will also need about thirty-seven (I like a few extra) 3″ x 5″ index cards for the Talking Points assignments.  Likewise, he will need a yellow highlighter and a pink or green highlighter (or small yellow and pink or green sticky notes) for his key word narrations.

Getting Ready for Bible

For Bible, students keep a prayer journal. Any bound book with lined pages can be used. We found some beautiful options at our local Christian bookstore! (If your student completed WG, WH, and/or U.S.I, he already has a prayer journal.) Next, I photocopy the “Prayer Journal Insert” from the Appendix of the U.S. History II guide. I have my student fold this and put it inside his Prayer Journal cover. Students also need their own Bible  to look up Scriptures each day. So, enjoy choosing whichever Bible you and your student would like best. Finally, I download and print the I Don’t Have Enough Faith to Be an Atheist Curriculum: Answer Key. I three-hole punch these and place them in a 1/2 inch three-ring binder.

Getting Ready for English IV and Speech

For Speech, I print the needed pages from the Secrets of Great Communicators: Teacher’s Guide CD from the PDF_Files folder. I three-hole punch these and put them in a 1/2″ three-ring binder. For English IV, I use either 3 bound and lined composition books (1 for English Grammar, 1 for Dictation, and 1 for Speech), OR I use 1 large bound and lined composition book with 3 section dividers (1 for English Grammar, 1 for Dictation, and 1 for Speech). I also choose a bound journal with lined pages for my student to use as his Literature Journal. Likewise, we choose a Common Place Book. Any keepsake-like bound, composition book with lines to copy memorable passages throughout the high school years can be chosen. Walmart  had many lovely, inexpensive options for these! Finally, I have a DVD player handy for the Literature DVDs and the Speech DVD.

Getting Ready for Economics and Finance

For Economics, I get 1 bound and lined composition book and label it “Economics.” If I want to remove the answer key from the back of Intro to Economics: Money, History, & Fiscal Faith, I remove it and put it in a folder. I print the Constitutional Literacy Answer Key to Workbook Questions, 3-hole punch them, and put them in a 1/2 inch three-ring binder. For Finance, I show my student how to print the activity and assessment pages from the Foundations in Personal Finance: Teacher Resources CD as it comes up in the plans. However, I do print the Fill-ins Answer Keys, the Chapter Summary Answers, and Money in Review answers. I three-hole punch these and put them in a 1″ binder. Likewise, I have folder for my student’s Finance activity pages and assessments.  We plan to have a DVD player handy for the Economics and Finance DVDs.

Getting Ready for Foreign Language

For Spanish II, I plan for my student to listen and practice with assigned Spanish CD tracks as scheduled in the Spanish II: Student Books. Likewise, I use the Spanish II: Teacher’s Guide “Audio Scripts” section to help my student write the assigned audio CD number and Track number on the blank next to each CD icon in each unit of each Student book. I might do this as it comes up in the plans, or all at the beginning of the year, whichever I prefer. For Latin/Greek, I bookmark the Internet site for Getting Started with Latin on our computer. I also plan to have a DVD player handy for the lessons from It’s Not Greek to Me DVD.

Getting Ready for Science and Math

For Astronomy/Geology/Paleontology, I get a bound and lined composition book for my student and label it “Science.” Next, if I am dong the lab, I gather all needed “Materials Not Included” in the lab kit noted in the Astronomy and Geology Lab Manual. If I want to remove the answer key from the back of the Survey of Astronomy: Teacher’s Guide, I remove it and put it in a folder or small binder. I plan to have a DVD player handy for the science DVDs as well. For Math, I gather whatever special materials are noted in the  course I chose.

Thoughts on Record Keeping

For high school, I keep my student’s completed notebooks, binders, and workbooks. I put these all in order on a shelf each year, along with the checked off Heart of Dakota guide itself. Together these create a detailed record of the work that has been done to earn credit. Using www.transcriptmaker.com, I create my student’s transcript. I also keep on file any required paperwork for my state, such as approved homeschool exemption forms and completed standardized test results. Each state can vary slightly in requirements for homeschooling, so be sure to check out your own state’s requirements at www.hslda.com.

Label Sticky Tabs to Mark Places in the U.S. History II Guide

Next, I label sticky tabs to mark places in my guide. I label the first tab “DAILY PLANS,” placing it on Unit 1, Day 1. If you are going to do things more as they come up in the plans, rather than how I’ve previously described setting up for U.S. History II, then you would also want to make sticky tabs for “TRIPLE-ENTRY JOURNAL,” “PRAYER JOURNAL,” and “DICTATION,” placing them in the USII guide’s Appendix. One final thing I liked to do is make a photocopy of the Narration Tips, Written Narration Tips, and Written Narration Skills.  Carrie does give permission to photocopy these. I keep these lists for me and for my student to reference throughout the year. However, you can just put another tab in USII’s Appendix for “NARRATION TIPS,” if you’d rather.

Shopping for Supplies

Carrie’s plans use readily available household supplies, and many options are suggested. However, to get ready to begin USI, I just stock up on usual art supplies – like colored pencils, thick and thin markers, a few permanent markers and high-lighters, glue (sticks and liquid), scissors, construction paper, tape (masking and clear), a ruler, a yardstick, sticky notes/tabs, paints/paintbrushes, cotton balls, yarn/string, etc. I also stock up on index cards and page protectors. Finally, a flashlight, paperclips, marker board with dry erase markers, and q-tips/toothpicks are also nice to have on hand.

Sorting Resources into “Things We Need Now” and “Things We Need Later” Bins or Totes

One of the last things I do is get two canvas bins.  I use one for ‘things we need now’ and the other for ‘things we need later.’ As I read through each box of my first week of U.S. History I’s plans, I put each needed resource in the bin  for ‘things we need now.’ I put the remaining items in the bin for ‘things we need later.’ Throughout the year as we finish using resources, I put them in the back of the ‘things we need later’ bin, and I move the next books or resources we need into the ‘things we need now’ bin or tub. This way, my ‘things we need now’ bin only contains what we need for each week. Another benefit is the ‘things we need now’ are always mobile! Likewise, I put many art supplies in a tool turnabout, so these are mobile too!

In Christ,
Julie

 

Setting Up for U.S. History I

From Our House to Yours

Setting Up for U.S. History I

So, I’ve placed my children, had my Heart of Dakota  ‘box day,’ and am setting up for high school U.S. History I (USI). My first step is to read through USI’s Introduction/Overview, Appendix, and first week or month of plans. This helps me envision my year and understand what my guide covers. Each high school credit includes its own specific course description, required resources, course materials, and suggested grading. So, taking time to read through these is time well spent.

Setting Up the Front of My U.S. History I Binder

First, I slide the preprinted full color U.S History I Journal cover in the front of my 1  1/2 inch 3-ring binder. Second, I print the Overview of the guide off the Internet (click here). I use the Table of Contents as my attendance record, noting the dates we completed each unit (i.e. Unit 1:  Sept. 2-6, 2019). Likewise, I include the Earning Credits and Possible Grading Scale in my binder to show how credit was earned.  Third, I print the first week of plans (click here), which is a nice overview. Some states require a completed portfolio for meeting with a principal or umbrella school. The Introduction and first week of plans give an excellent overview for this. (Carrie gives permission for the Introduction and First Week of Plans to be printed or copied for portfolio compilation. However, any other photocopies or retyping of plans would be a copyright infringement.)

Setting Up the Rest of My U.S. History I Binder

I continue setting up the rest of my U.S. History I binder. Behind the First Week of Plans, I place USI’s notebook pages inside clear page protectors. Throughout the homeschool year, my student takes out each notebook page he is using for the week. Then, when he is done with each page, he simply puts it back in a page protector for safe keeping. This makes a beautiful keepsake of our year of spent doing U.S. History I!

Preparing for the Living Library Extra Credit Work

If my student is doing the U.S. History I Living Library 10% extra credit option (which is an option I personally love for my children to do), from the USI Appendix, I photocopy the “Double-Entry Journal Assignment” sheet. I have my student glue it in the front of a bound and lined composition book of his choice. This way, he can refer to the example to know the format expected for his journal assignments. I simply keep the notebook with his completed double-entry journal assignments on hand as a record of his extra credit work for the year.

Setting Up the Book of Centuries’ Binder

For the Book of Centuries (BOC), the USI Introduction suggests using a 1 inch 3-ring binder. This already comes preprinted and 3-hole punched.  So, I just slide the preprinted full color BOC Notebook cover in the front of my binder. Then, I place the 3-hole punched BOC pages in the binder. (If you used World Geography or World History the years before, you’ve already done this step). Then, I add the extra pages needed for the 17th-19th A.D. Centuries. As many different BOC pages are used at a time and there is gluing involved, I don’t put these in clear page protectors.  Next, following the “Course Materials” section in the USI Introduction, I print the History Through the Ages: U.S. History I Timeline Figures from the Timeline Figures CD. I put these in a pile in order and staple the top left corner to keep them together. Last, I slide the stapled together timeline pages inside the front of my BOC binder’s pocket.

A Few Other Noteworthy Things About Setting Up for the U.S History I Course

Throughout the year, my student follows the USI daily plans to make photocopies for U.S. History Map Activities and from Great Documents from U.S. History. I help with making these copies the first time they come up in the plans. Then, my student follows the directions to do this on his own. We file his completed maps in the back of his U.S History I journal. I also let my student know he will need a DVD player for The American Testimony DVD Set. He will also need about thirty-seven (I like a few extra) 3″ x 5″ index cards for the Day 3 Talking Points assignments.  Likewise, he will need a yellow highlighter and a pink or green highlighter (or small yellow and pink or green sticky notes) for his key word narrations.

Setting Up for the Government/Civics Course in U.S History I

For the Government/Civics Course, U.S. History I’s Introduction suggests using a 1 inch 3-ring binder. Following the directions in U.S. History I’s Introduction, I print the video transcripts, answer keys for quizzes/tests, and the “Grade Book” on p. xxi-xxii from the A Noble Experiment: Teacher Resource CD. I also use a folder to hold any loose pages. Next, I decide whether to remove the quiz and test pages from the back of the A Noble Experiment: Student Activity Book. Or, I just leave them intact and remove them as needed throughout the year. Finally, I make sure to have a DVD player on hand for my student to watch the A Noble Experiment DVD lessons, as well as the DVD Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (which can be rented when it is assigned in Lesson 41 of A Noble Experiment).

Getting Ready for Bible

For Bible, students keep a prayer journal. Any bound book with lined pages can be used. We found some beautiful options at our local Christian bookstore! Next, I photocopy “Preparing Your Heart for Prayer” from the Appendix of the U.S. History I guide. I have my student fold this and put it inside his Prayer Journal cover to highlight as he uses it for his daily Bible Quiet Time. Students also need their own Bible  to look up Scriptures each day. So, enjoy choosing whichever Bible you and your student would like best. Likewise, make sure your student has a CD player handy to listen to When Morning Guilds the Skies. Finally, we choose a Common Place Book. Any keepsake-like bound, composition book with lines to copy memorable passages throughout the high school years can be chosen. Walmart  had many lovely, inexpensive options!

Getting Ready for English III

For English III, I use either 3 bound and lined composition books (1 for English Grammar, 1 for Literature, and 1 for Composition), OR I use 1 large bound and lined composition book with 3 section dividers (1 for English Grammar, 1 for Literature, and 1 for Composition). If my student is still completing his dictation levels, I use 4 composition books, OR 1  large book with 4 section dividers. I label this “English III.” Likewise, I make photocopies (one for each novel and a few extras to have on hand) of the “Literary Synthesis Sheet” from USI’s Appendix.  Then, I photocopy a handful of the “Word and Idea Helper” sheets from the Appendix as well. I 3-hole punch all of these and keep them in my student’s binder, or put them in a folder if I didn’t choose to use a binder. The Common Place Book already mentioned in the above Bible section is also used for English III.

Getting Ready for Constitutional Literacy, Spanish II, Chemistry, and Math

For Constitutional Literacy, I get 1 bound and lined composition book for my student to record his “Probe” research question responses. I print the Constitutional Literacy Answer Key to Workbook Questions, 3-hole punch them, and put them in a 1/2 inch three-ring binder. We plan to have a DVD player handy for my student to watch the Constitutional Literacy DVD lessons. For Spanish II, I plan for my student to listen and practice with assigned Spanish CD tracks as scheduled in the Spanish II: Student Books. Likewise, I use the Spanish II: Teacher’s Guide “Audio Scripts” section to help my student write the assigned audio CD number and Track number on the blank next to each CD icon in each unit of each Student book. I might do this as it comes up in the plans, or all at the beginning of the year, whichever I prefer.

For Chemistry, I get a bound and lined composition book for my student and label it “Chemistry.” Next, if I am dong the lab, I gather all needed “Experiment Supplies” noted on p. v-ix of Discovering Design with Chemistry. If I am choosing to give the chapter tests, I copy each chapter test from the Answer Key and Tests for Discovering Design with Chemistry. I place these in a folder. For Math: Algebra II, I gather whatever special materials are noted in the Algebra II course I chose. Or, if my student is doing Geometry instead, I refer to the World History Geometry course materials section to gather materials.

Thoughts on Record Keeping

For high school, I keep my student’s completed notebooks, binders, and workbooks. I put these all in order on a shelf each year, along with the checked off Heart of Dakota guide itself. Together these create a detailed record of the work that has been done to earn credit. Using www.transcriptmaker.com, I create my student’s transcript. I also keep on file any required paperwork for my state, such as approved homeschool exemption forms and completed standardized test results. Each state can vary slightly in requirements for homeschooling, so be sure to check out your own state’s requirements at www.hslda.com.

Label Sticky Tabs to Mark Places in the U.S. History I Guide

Next, I label sticky tabs to mark places in my guide. I label the first tab “DAILY PLANS,” placing it on Unit 1, Day 1. If you are going to do things more as they come up in the plans, rather than how I’ve previously described setting up for U.S. History I, then you would also want to make sticky tabs for “LITERARY SYNTHESIS,” “WORD AND IDEA HELPER SHEET,” and “DICTATION,” placing them in the WH guide’s Appendix. One final thing I liked to do is make a photocopy of the Narration Tips, Written Narration Tips, and Written Narration Skills.  Carrie does give permission to photocopy these. I keep these lists for me and for my student to reference throughout the year. However, you can just put another tab in USI’s Appendix for “NARRATION TIPS,” if you’d rather.

Shopping for Supplies

Carrie’s plans use readily available household supplies, and many options are suggested. However, to get ready to begin USI, I just stock up on usual art supplies – like colored pencils, thick and thin markers, a few permanent markers and high-lighters, glue (sticks and liquid), scissors, construction paper, tape (masking and clear), a ruler, a yardstick, sticky notes/tabs, paints/paintbrushes, cotton balls, yarn/string, etc. I also stock up on index cards and page protectors. Finally, a flashlight, paperclips, marker board with dry erase markers, and q-tips/toothpicks are also nice to have on hand.

Sorting Resources into “Things We Need Now” and “Things We Need Later” Bins or Totes

One of the last things I do is get two canvas bins.  I use one for ‘things we need now’ and the other for ‘things we need later.’ As I read through each box of my first week of U.S. History I’s plans, I put each needed resource in the bin  for ‘things we need now.’ I put the remaining items in the bin for ‘things we need later.’ Throughout the year as we finish using resources, I put them in the back of the ‘things we need later’ bin, and I move the next books or resources we need into the ‘things we need now’ bin or tub. This way, my ‘things we need now’ bin only contains what we need for each week. Another benefit is the ‘things we need now’ are always mobile! Likewise, I put many art supplies in a tool turnabout, so these are mobile too!

In Christ,
Julie