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From: kd1219 in Alabama (71.207.183.195)
Subject:         Re: Needing serious advice here!
Date: May 16, 2010 at 5:37 pm PST

In Reply to: Needing serious advice here! posted by Jane on September 5, 2009 at 9:09 pm:

I was in a very similar situation. I knew that it was not going to get better the next year because of my health issues so I needed something GOOD but something that was easy for them to use on their own if I wasn't able to work with them.

I have homeschooled for almost 20 years and I have used ideas similar to the ones posted here but this time that was not going to work.

I finally settled on Abeka DVDs. I was very hesitant to put them in their grade level (because they were behind) but i did anyway. The program reviews so much that it was easy for them to follow the program without a problem. The only one that we really had to work extra on was my 5th grader's math. The 2d grader was really struggling with reading but all the phonics lessons had him up to par in no time.

Abeka has never been my 'favorite' curriculum but it was THE best for the situation. They could pop in the DVD and be taught the whole lesson without me. If I was able to help then I would do the lesson myself with them or watch the dvd with them.

I did not use the DVD option where you had to send the work to Abeka! we did not do 'seatwork' in the 2d grade and we skipped the reading parts on the dvds and I listened to the kids read to me. Sometimes we did history or science questions orally. Really we did not find it too hard to do the work especially when you tweak it for you and your kids.

we are still using the Abeka DVDs and will use them next year too.

It is more expensive but this year they have a new option where you can buy your books used and only pay to rent the dvds.

my responsibility with the DVDs: make sure they watch and participate; do occasional tests, timing of speed drills or reading tests; listen to them read; and grade papers. That does not take a lot of time and they are getting an excellent education.

The classes and work is not particularly 'exciting' (although some of the teachers are great about adding fun and interesting stories)... but it is very much like public school when I went to school ... and we didn't have a choice! It is much cheaper than any Christian school and it gives you the break you need for now without giving up your homeschooling. you can always choose something else next year.

I did see that my children improved a LOT and I felt that they caught up in a much less stressful way than if I was doing it and trying to hard to push them too fast through material.

Extras w/ Abeka's DVD program: They provide grade sheets, tell you how much to count off, how to avg grades, give you a manual telling you what they have to watch and what you have to do and grade, they provide all the answer keys.
PLUS: Bible includes pledge, patriotic songs, Bible memory verses, hymn singing, catechism questions, prayer, Bible lesson; spelling includes vocabulary words and learning poetry; history includes geography and memorization of historical documents, presidents, capitals, etc; math includes games, flashcard drills, etc; language includes hand claps/snaps/songs, etc to help remember parts of speech, types of sentences etc, reading includes more vocabulary words, reading fluency, speed; science includes labs and experiments (not a lot in the elementary grades), ART - art project books and video lesson that demonstrates how to do the project. They also assign projects and book reports that you can require your child to do or not. All of this is things I would like to do but rarely get around to doing it with my kids!!

when you don't send your work to abeka and you can tweak it to your situation it works well!!

Blessings,
Reba


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