Summer School Home School

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I should be busy packing and packing and cleaning. I mean… I am moving on Friday!
But instead, I am starting on a new family adventure. Sorta.

Why?

Well, there are many things that we love about the kids school. It has an amazing community that has supported us my husband’s health has steadily declined. The kids in The Flash’s class are about the nicest group you can imagine. The parents are really involved. There is an annual school-wide campout with over 400 people in addition to a grade level campout….

That’s a lot of great stuff for a public school in my area!

So, even though we are moving, the kids are going to stay at their current school.

But, it’s not all roses and chocolate. The Flash did not do well on his state testing this year, which is a basic measure of achievement. His teacher also claimed that the was not meeting benchmarks in several areas throughout the year (I do put claimed here, because I feel that this teacher has especially stringent criteria and other teachers I showed his work to felt like it was benchmark work). In addition, his teacher would not fill out scoring sheets that I had created to help him be more accountable. And Marvel Girl had some major class drama this year with an extremely unruly class.

Because we cannot afford private school, do not want to switch neighborhood schools, and I can’t stay home to homeschool (we are a one income family already!)… I am summer schooling the kids.

I had initially tried to find a pre-established summer school program in the area for someone else to work on academics with the kids. However, there is nothing around here that does academics! Nothing. Everything is “have fun summer camp”! Then I highly considered enrolling them in an online program. But that is pricey and I can still fall back on that in the future.

I realized that, as an educator, I should (in theory) be able to do what any of these paid programs claim to do… help my kids catch up/keep up during the summer.  And so I decided that for 4 weeks this summer (the weeks when we have no summer camps or vacation plans), we will be doing 2 hours of homeschooling.

Here is the schedule that I came up with:
Blue = The Flash–going into 5th grade
Green = Marvel Girl–going into 2nd grade

We just finished our first day. I almost threw the computer out of the window trying to figure out Khan Academy, but I think now (after the fact), I’ve got it figured out for the kids.

Here are the links to the programs we are using:

Reading comprehension
Flash: Multiple Skills Series (set of books with reading comprehension questions borrowed from my school)
Marvel Girl: Reading Comprehension worksheets
Shared reading (back and forth reading together)
Flash: From lists such as this
Marvel Girl: We’re reading through all the Magic Tree House books

Math
Flash: Khan Academy
Marvel Girl: Khan Academy
Quick Math on the iPad

Spelling (maybe…. only if I can combine this with the typing/cursive)
Flash: http://www.k12reader.com/fifth-grade-spelling-words/
Marvel Girl: http://www.k12reader.com/second-grade-spelling-words/

Other
Flash: Typing
Marvel Girl: Cursive
Writing
Flash: Scott Foresman 5th grade writing/grammar
Marvel Girl: Scott Foresman 2nd grade writing/grammar
Writing work on a story

I am adapting my Persuade Me! graphic organizers and the work The Flash has already done with Persuasive Writing.


Please wish me a lot of luck and a lot of patience through this journey!

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2 Comments

  1. I can speak to the effectiveness of both FastMath and the good ol’ Multiple Skills books. We use both here in my middle school (obviously for below-level learners) and they are very effective. My son has read all the MTH books, and they are rich in follow-up content if you choose. I’m going to look into that “Persuade Me” format…I like it for my weaker writers who need to do a TON of argumentative writing in 7th (thanks CCS!).

    GL in your move and your summer school!

  2. You are awesome. That is a great idea!
    I make my kids do “homework” during the summer too. This year we are working on reading comprehension and math the most but we also work on writing (they keep journals) and science to. They actually enjoy it most of the time.

    Good luck!

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