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    SherriD's Avatar
    SherriD is offline Junior Member
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    Default ?I may have made a mistake!

    Ok, my 2nd grader was flying through each lesson, so I thought, maybe this isn't enough for him so I ordered Abeka, I have read so much good about it! I was afraid T4L was going to make him behind, should I ever change to something else or have to put him in a private school. I also like the fact that Abeka is bible based too...but....I feel like I am drowning in the lesson planning!!! Is there anyone who has gone through Time4learning and then went to Abeka or something else....and is T4L going to get him to where he needs to be when the lessons run out in , what does it go to 6th or 8th grade?

    I reallly don't know what to do.......This past few days I have been teaching some through Abeka and letting him do Math and LA with T4L. I am up late at night working on lessons, and here it is Saturday and I have been all morning working on getting lessons together for next week. Any suggestions?

  2. #2
    Lena's Avatar
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    Hi Sherri,

    I'm a newbie to homeschooling and to T4L, so I'm no expert. However, I can relate to how you are feeling. When we first started talking about homeschooling, I happened to find a great deal on Abeka, so I bought it. I was so overwhelmed with all the options, I went with Abeka mostly because it was something he had already been exposed to, and he had done well with it. However, I found it so overwhelming, and way too much work for me-and it was basically recreating school at home, which is not what I wanted to do, so I set it aside. I was too overwhelmed with the planning and trying to organize...I found T4L and went with that to get started. I realized that I could just get started with T4L and I thought I would do that, and then get organized/make better plans. However, my son is doing really well with T4L that we have decided to use it as our main curriculum and supplement with a few other things.

    I really like the Abeka handwriting stuff-my son has been writing in cursive since kinder. We kept that from Abeka, and some of the readers. we are selling the rest!

    I had to give myself permission to relax. Homeschooling (for us) is not re-creating school at home. It takes much less time, it's more fun, varied and relaxed. We can take rabbit trails based on my son's interests, and it's okay. I do still wonder if we're doing "enough" sometimes-worry that he's behind, but honestly, he isn't. I'm trying to learn to trust the process more and move away from the public school/test mindset.

    I haven't figured it all out, I don't have all the answers, but we are having fun and learning together. For now, that is perfect for our family.

    hth

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    Lena's Avatar
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    Also, wanted to add that T4L goes through 8th grade and is aligned with many state curriculum standards. I have heard many people rave about their students catching up if they were behind and/or testing at or above their grade level using T4L. I'm too new to have had my son tested yet. What I can tell you is that when I talk to him about the lessons, he seems to understand. And I can tell when he doesn't, so I look for other ways/methods of teaching the same concepts to him.

  4. #4
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    fairylover is offline Senior Member
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    I have been using Time4Learning since kindergarten. My son is now in third grade. He's doing well and is on level with his peers in most things. He is a reluctant reader. But this is not unusual for a boy. We do some supplementing but not another full curriculum. We use All About Spelling, Handwriting Without Tears, and Piano. We also do lots and lots of outside classes at environmental centers, nature centers, the science museum and things like that.

    I think one mistake that new homechoolers often make is thinking that we have to keep the kids busy from 8 to 3 every day. Kids who go to public school spend a great deal of time waiting, waiting for their turn, waiting in line for lunch, waiting in line for the bathroom, waiting for slower students to catch up. A lot of their school day is spent waiting. When we homeschool, our child doesn't have to wait all the time. So our kids can go through their days work in an hour or two. Then they can spend the rest of the time learning in other ways. Helping with cooking is a great way to add more learning to their day. Building with legos is excellant for developing their minds and expressing creativity. Go outside and spend time in nature. Learn the names of the trees in your area. Make leaf prints. The list goes on and on. I don't know how you feel about tv, but shows like Mythbusters and How Its Made are great as well as some of the nature shows that are on tv.

    If you want to use part of Abeka to study religion for example. go ahead and add that to his day. But I wouldn't spend a lot of time on lesson plans and worrying about what else to do. He is learning. My biggest piece of advice for you would be to relax. Slow down and enjoy what your son is learning. There is no reason to think he needs more unless he is expressing that he is bored. If he already understands the second grade work, bump him up to third grade. Maybe he needs second grade language and third grade math. It's totally okay to do this. There is a distinct difference between second and third grade work on t4l. Third grade is much more reading and school like and less video game like than second grade. The work will take him longer to do.

    Time4Learning works. Besides my son doing it, three of my grandchildren are also using t4l. Keep asking questions on here. I would suggest you join your state Parent Support Group if you haven't already. Relax and enjoy.
    Kathi Homeschooling Mama to Twelve year old Dakota

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    SherriD's Avatar
    SherriD is offline Junior Member
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    Thanks, I guess that is exactly what I need to do, relax and trust that God will show me if he needs something else. Thanks for your suggestions!

    God bless
    Sherri

  6. #6
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    hearthstone_academy is offline Administrator
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    Sherri, A Beka is a very aggressive curriculum. It's at least a year more advanced than other curricula at each grade level. Besides that, it was written for busy private schools, where the teacher has to keep the students busy and at their seats most of the time. That's why all of the "seat work" is included. I love some of A Beka's lower level workbooks, but I never buy the teacher's manuals and do everything that they say to do in there. Eek! You poor thing! You will both burn out very quickly that way, especially if you are also using Time4Learning. How old is your son?

    Homeschooling is much more efficient than traditional school. You are not taking time for roll call, to line up to go to lunch, to color quietly while the other children finish their test, to wait in line to view something beneath a microscope, and so forth. Your son looks quite young. A preschooler can do very well with less than an hour of school a day. A kindergartner can do one to two hours; first and second graders may work steadily for a couple of hours. The time involved increases with age.

    I have had great success with my younger children by simply devoting a couple of hours a day to "school" work and making sure the rest of their day consists of worthwhile activities. That means, no matter how quickly they finish "school", they are not allowed tv, dvds, videogames, etc. They can do as much of that as they want after dinner and even on weekends. During the weekdays, their non-school time is spent reading, doing arts and crafts, active play (swings, slide, ball), creative play (blocks, Legos, clay), and imaginary play ("cars", "house"). If they're "bored" without tv, you can schedule time to play an educational board game with them each day (something most kids look forward to), read a chapter book aloud to them (even after they can read themselves), do a cooking project together (applied math practice!), and so forth. Between those special events, it's GOOD for them to find constructive ways to fill their time.

    Homeschooling requires a change of mindset. The formal "school" part of the day is only PART of the child's day.

    Time4Learning is "enough". No matter what curriculum you use, you will decide to add your personal touches. Maybe you'll want to teach a foreign language, or put an extra emphasis on art.

    My recommendation for k-2 is to do Time4Learning for math and language arts (plus the language arts extensions, because of the excellent way they integrate some science and social studies concepts). Use the science and social studies Time4Learning provides, but also read loads of library books on science and social studies topics. My kids have learned sooo much more through just listening to an enjoyable story about Thomas Edison (try the Childhood of Famous Americans series) than from reading a few pages in a textbook and taking a test about it. I like to use this Typical Course of Study from World Book for inspiration, but remember that each curriculum will have its own ideas about what to teach when.

    Have fun with this!

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

  7. #7
    SherriD's Avatar
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    Thanks, yeah, the pic is a little old....he is 7 now, 2nd grade. I was just thinking I don't want to let him get behind. I realize now have to get a homeschool mindset. And not having known or been around this, I guess I have a lot to learn and unlearn! He loves to read and is reading fluently. Is the "childhood of favorite americans series" a book or video? I didn't find it in our local library search engine.

    Thanks!

  8. #8
    krisci is offline Junior Member
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    My daughter is also in 2nd Grade. We are doing A Beka (full language arts curriculum, arithmetic, spelling and poetry). On top of that we use T4L math, language arts (both grades 1 and 2), science and history. I'd say she does about four hours a day with all that but sometimes we do go a bit longer.

    A Beka is terrific. There is no doubt about that. My son scored 'post high school' on the Stanford Achievement Test last year in sixth grade. I have no doubt it is because he's done A Beka since Kindergarten. Yes, there is a lot of 'busy' work but that is what really drills the concepts into them. I found planning to be a breeze with the parent manuals. However, my son and I are more structured so this was a very nice fit.

    We added T4L for my daughter's curriculum because she has dyslexia. We really wanted to work on phonics and the basics of Language Arts and we wanted to make it fun. After trying it, we discovered she really likes the other courses as well. I've found that with both A Beka and T4L, my daughter is really learning and there is no doubt, this really is a successful year.

    With planning, I use SkedTrack. It is an online scheduler that makes are lives so much easier. I tackle one subject at a time while the kids are doing schoolwork and I update the next 20 or so lessons. The great thing is that if you don't complete a day, you don't check it off and it appears the next day. I don't feel overwhelmed by scheduling at all and the kids like checking their schedules each day and marking off the things they complete.

    Just had to sing the praises of both curricula when used together
    Last edited by krisci; 10-12-2010 at 06:07 PM.

  9. #9
    NaturallySimple is offline Junior Member
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    Hi Kathi,

    Are you perchance the same Kathi on the essential herbal list?

  10. #10
    fairylover's Avatar
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    That would be me. I love that list.
    Kathi Homeschooling Mama to Twelve year old Dakota

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