Getting frustrated with T4L
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Thread: Getting frustrated with T4L

  1. #1
    hzritter is offline Member
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    Angry Getting frustrated with T4L

    Today I have hit my boiling point with T4L I am having such a hard time keeping track of what my child has fully completed verses what she needs to do or has skipped. She skips around and always ends up doing the practices and quizzes more than once so when I look at what she has done for the week there is so much that I can't determine where I need to help her. I have a print out of her weekly lessons and I try to go through and check of what she has completed and what she needs to redo. However, it takes me over an hour to browse through all the lessons. Is there an easier way? Plus I'm in week 2 and T4L NEVER contacted me back.
    Considering using another school....

  2. #2
    hearthstone_academy's Avatar
    hearthstone_academy is offline Administrator
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    Hi. I'm sorry you're frustrated. There is a learning curve when using any new curriculum, and Time4Learning provides so many optional resources that it can be very confusing at first.

    How old is your child? The younger they are, the more guidance they will need in accessing what comes next.

    The easiest way to see the next activity in line is to click on a subject icon and then click on the first icon on that page that does not have a check mark. Those icons represent chapters in a book. You will be taken to a new page with icons that represent lessons in a chapter. Click on the first icon that does not have a check mark. You will be taken to a new page that represent activities in a lesson. Click on the first icon that does not have a check mark, and you will be taken to an activity. When finished with that activity, repeat the process, either by choosing the same subject icon again or a new subject.

    Basically, just keep clicking the first thing that isn't checked off until you get to an activity!

    The exception is quizzes and tests. These icons don't get checked off. You or your child needs to remember whether she has done a quiz or test, or be sure to check it off on her paper schedule.

    Another say is to use the Activity Finder. If you have printed a paper schedule, you or your child can simply type the activity number into the area indicated by a magnifying glass at the lower, right of her student dashboard. She will be taken directly to that lesson. Again, you can't find quizzes and tests this way. When her schedule shows it's time for a quiz or test, you will need to do the "click the next thing that isn't marked off" thing until you reach a quiz or test.

    Did you call T4L and leave a message? I'm surprised you didn't receive a return call. They are known for their customer service. I'm really sorry that happened.

    Please let us know if you have more questions. After the first few weeks, it just becomes automatic.

    Mom of six . . . current students and homeschool graduates. Enjoying using Time4Learning since 2006!

  3. #3
    hzritter is offline Member
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    My child is 12 and I did figure out the icons and chapters. I know we have 3 boxes unchecked she did the work it is graded, but I think she exited out of those wrong so they didn't check off. She now goes in and out of them daily creating a long list in her portfolio which is making it harder for me to keep track of where she is when she needs help.
    Yes I called once and emailed twice. Needless to say I won't ask again. I don't know what I'd do if not for these threads. I think today is just a brick wall day. I told her to just close the computer and lets take a break. I think she is getting frustrated prior to asking for help and when she finally comes to me for help she is snappy so of course that makes me snappy.
    I'm going to try and figure some things out today, get her to take a break and hopefully come back to it with fresher eyes.

  4. #4
    onlyme4430 is offline Member
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    i'm sorry you're having such a rough start. what i've done to help me keep track is use the activity scheduler along with the recent work report. i don't have my son go through the scheduler on his start page, but instead he does specific subjects on specific days. i have found that this helps keep him from being overwhelmed with the number of lessons to choose from. we typically do math/lang art/lang arts ext on mondays/wednesdays and science/social studies on tues/thursdays. each day he knows which subjects to work on and we go in sequence, one lesson topic at a time. at the end of the day or sometimes the next day, i compare the activity schedule that i created for him (to make sure we get all lessons completed in the time we want) to his recent work and manually check off each lesson online..i don't print the actual report but you could do the same method if it's easier to print it out. limiting the amount of subjects per day may help both of you feel less overwhelmed, especially at first when you're still getting used to the program. we've started at the beginning of june doing a "mini" school day about 3 times a week so we had some time to work it out before the actual start of our school year. i really hope this helps...i know it can be frustrating but my son is doing really well with this program and he has special needs so it's hard to find a good fit sometimes. let me know if i can help any further too!

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    home_school_mom is offline Junior Member
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    since we are still new to T4L i made sure to go over how to guide through each subject and find what she needs to do for the day. our first day we went and from start to finish with each lesson and I made sure she understood how to complete each lesson properly. there has been one test that froze on her when giving the score at the end but luckily i was able to see it on my parents end and found she got them all correct.

    as for T4L not answering, I had the same issue before I even started. I sent in an email via their site and waited a couple of days even though it says they answer in hours or up to 24 hour period. after 2 days I decided to call. luckily someone answered. I made sure to tell the lady that answered but she didn't provide me with any apology for no response or anything. she wasn't rude, just not extremely helpful. I asked the questions I wanted to know and she was very matter of fact. if I went by the customer service alone, I wouldn't have joined T4L. but since we really were looking for a change and the reviews were very good, I gave it a try knowing that in 14 days I could cancel and get a refund. being my daughter has loved it and the forums are very helpful, we may stay. but I just wanted to let you know that you aren't the only one who didn't get the quality of customer service that T4L boasts about.

    with that being said, I wouldn't give up just yet. sometimes it can be challenging to find your grove with something new. good luck!

  6. #6
    hearthstone_academy's Avatar
    hearthstone_academy is offline Administrator
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    hzritter, if you are encountering a long list of activities your child has entered and exited quickly within her portfolio, you must be looking at the Recent Work tab. That's just a quick place to check on ALL program access. It's better to click the Reports tab at the top and use the actual reports to see what she has done, because only COMPLETED work shows up there. The default tab within the portfolio is Recent Work, but the actual Reports are usually more helpful for most families.

    Mom of six . . . current students and homeschool graduates. Enjoying using Time4Learning since 2006!

  7. #7
    dezgie is offline Junior Member
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    Cool Re: Getting frustrated with T4L

    I'm sorry to hear that you are frustrated. We are new to homeschooling this year and to T4L. Our son is 13 years old and in 8th grade. Just for some quick background, he has an attachment disorder. We chose to homeschool him this year because we all needed a break. He is not able to handle full days at school and the school, great as they are, would call us to come pick him up several times a week. The three of us were stressed to the max. I did a good deal of research before choosing TL4. I knew going into it, regardless of how much of a background I have in computers and software, that there would be a learning curve for both of us as well as our son. Having said that, once I purchased the program, I took some time to find my way around, even if it meant delaying starting the lessons for our son. Once I got it sort of figured out, I had the calculator and activity planner set a plan for us. We went into the first day and struggled through it a bit until we got the hang of things. Once we got through the first week, we found that there were some things that we could do better, and the platform allowed for that. I think the key for us was that we worked side by side with our son in the lessons. We walked through each one with him. We print out the lessons for each week. I go through and highlight each day's lessons in a different color. This is just a guideline for us to see what should be done each week. We put a check on the paper when the lesson is done. Since the lesson plan updates around 1:00 am EST, I check the next day to see if the lessons have been marked as done. The flexibility the auto planner allows for is key for us and our son. Again, we use it as a guideline. If our son can't handle math one day, we'll focus on another subject and get back to math on another day. Take a deep breath and relax. Remember why you chose to homeschool. Enjoy the time together. And, before you say "that's easy for you to say", walk a mile in our shoes . Best of luck!

  8. #8
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    hearthstone_academy is offline Administrator
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    Default Re: Getting frustrated with T4L

    Hi, dezgie. I think you are right about staying actively involved in teaching your child, even when using an online curriculum. The best comparison I have seen is to a dishwasher! Yes, it will wash your dishes, but someone has to rinse them, load the dishwasher, take the dishes out and put them away, make sure there's enough dishwasher detergent, and pay the electric and water bills. Much of this will need to be done every day.

    Like a dishwasher, the Time4Learning makes it much easier to teach your child, but you are still the teacher. You need to set up an activity plan, decide which worksheets to use, grade worksheets and writing assignments, monitor the student reports, be available for questions, and so forth. If the student asks a question you do not know the answer to, don't be afraid to admit that and to watch the lesson again with your child. One of the things I've said most often to my kids is, "I don't know, but let's find out together." They are aware that I've learned a lot in the course of homeschooling them!

    I love that Time4Learning eliminates my need to teach everything "from scratch" and that the vast majority of the work is graded by the computer. That has saved me from grading stacks and stacks of workbooks every evening.

    Mom of six . . . current students and homeschool graduates. Enjoying using Time4Learning since 2006!

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