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k12/Virtual Academy Winter 2009 - Page 5

post #81 of 216
Hi! I mostly lurk, but, we just joined CAVA as of yesterday. I asked specifically about Elluminate and my teacher said it was only mandatory if your child was behind.

Question: Why is there no Teacher's Guide for Language Arts? Whenever I llok at the Student Book, it doesn't seem to have a flow, like how would I know to read Cinderella unless it was broken down for me? Unless I'm missing something?

Thanks
post #82 of 216
Thread Starter 
Your teacher's guides are online, with each lesson plan there is an overview you can follow for them.

You'll have to do an "Online Orientation" for k12 and that will cover it better - but basically the Language Arts curriculum for kindergarten at least, moves between the fairy tale book, assorted other books, and etc. per whatever the k12 goals are. Usually a language lesson has 3-4 lessons on each story you read. So you'd read it, then read it with more time for questions/discussions, then read it again with more reflection, then possibly act it out the fourth time (if you do all four lessons/story; we usually don't because Ina's got it; we combine them into two lessons usually).

Welcome to k12! And to our thread.
post #83 of 216
Thanks. I found them. There are quite a few different sites with different info. Is it not weird that some subjects have guides and others don't? Anyway, thanks again?
post #84 of 216
Thread Starter 
OK,

Wanted to run my new Music Lessons plan past you all.

We are supposed to be exploring the High/Low of Melodic Direction in music right now.

Of course none of the songs have anything to do with Christmas/winter.

I've decided that for music lessons from now 'til Christmas, we're going to do Christmas music. I've got a couple cds which are mostly instrumental, so we can even incorporate instrumental/classical at the end of each lesson. I'm going to follow the format that the lesson would have normally followed (3-4 songs with various activities to show hi/lo, followed by the classical or instrumental piece).....

We are still most behind in Music, which means that I'll be probably doing 1 lesson/day and through with that unit by the middle of next week; then I am supposed to look at loud/soft (5 lessons) and then long/short (5 lessons again I think). It will probably be more difficult for me to find songs which follow those profiles, but even if I'm only able to do the Christmas music for these next five lessons, that's more seasonal than what I've got right now.

Thoughts/advice?
post #85 of 216
My thoghts and advice are just that you listen to whatever music you want and talk about whatever you want about it, and mark the lessons as done . That's what we did in our house!

NishaG-

For Language Arts, through the 2nd grade the lessons are scripted online. do you have access to the online school yet? If not, it will get a lot more clear once you do. you just click on the lesson you're doing, and it will tell you what you're supposed to be teaching her. In fact, I'm not sure if there are any teacher guides in K - there are teacher guides for most subjects starting in grade 3, but all of the teacher guide info can also be found online as pdfs from within the lessons.
post #86 of 216
I was wondering something, do you actually do the lessons online or just look at the materials list to see whats assigned for that week? Obviously for things like History you need to do it online but LA at least for 3rd grade has been pretty much totally offline so far. dd digs in her heels if she see's she's done more then 1 lesson but I only ask her to do an hour a day of work and if that means doing a couple extra lessons then so be it. It really helps when we don't do work for a week like this week when we were out of town and just to busy to worry about school plus the kids are so excited and bouncing off the walls at the hospital that there is no way I can get dd to do work (yes, my kids LOVE visiting the hospital, the appts themselves are boring but the rest of the time they have a blast playing with all the new toys and things to see)
post #87 of 216
Quote:
Originally Posted by Satori View Post
I was wondering something, do you actually do the lessons online or just look at the materials list to see whats assigned for that week?
Our DD is in K so I'm not sure if it's different. Lately though I've been looking at the materials list and objectives for the week and writing them down. I look through the lessons and make some notes if I think there is an activity that will interest DD. Then I go off of my notes. Our DD asks to do schoolwork at weird times and places so I toss these materials in a bag and we work out of it for the week. This gives us lots of flexibility and allows me to respond to those crazy times we'll be some place and she asks to do schoolwork.

This doesn't work with history, and only really works with math sheets which are review. Lately though I've added the unifex cubes and base ten blocks to the bag though as she has a tendency to push ahead.

Quote:
Originally Posted by elanorh View Post
Hmm, at least here in WY, the Elluminate Sessions are simply during the teacher's biweekly phone call - she does one of the lessons for that day with Ina. This week it will be math. Two weeks ago, it was history.

I wonder how much is a k12 policy, and how much is an external mandate from a school district or state education board ....
I think much of it is on the state level. Mostly because what you are describing is foreign to me. We have a p/t phone conference once every two months so we've only had two this year. The last one in November our teacher asked DD to do an elluminate session with her. She asked DD to read some sentences with her, do a few math problems then the teacher read a story and she and DD discussed it. It was maybe 5 minutes tops. Then the teacher and I chatted a bit on the phone and setup our next conference for January. We only have four of these a year.

NishaG - welcome and I hope you all enjoy k12! Are you on the OLS yet? It's the central location for all lesson plans.
post #88 of 216
We do a lot of work offline at this point. Bean is quiet while awake in the car under exactly two circumstances: If he has a book that's interesting to him, or if President Obama is on the radio. Pippi Longstocking was wonderful. It's not on the list, but his cousin lent him The Tale of Desperaux and I'll certainly count that toward his literature time until we get into the next novel (unless it's on the list... but I don't think it is ). Boobah is a bit more difficult, because she needs my full attention to do her work. I can't just toss her a book in the car, which is a bummer. We can work on math that way, though; She needs very little direction for that right now (I need to get myself in gear and have her moved to Math 1). I'd say that about 70% of Bean's work (3/4) is offline and about 90% of Boobah's (K) is, though. I'm always amazed by people who claim to spend more time online, I can't imagine what they're doing.

Exolax, I agree with you-- that's got to vary widely by VA. My kids each have a monthly conference with their teacher. Bean has an additional conference with the ALP teacher and an Elluminate once a week before he does his Scantron. That's supposed to be a review session for kids who didn't do well on the test Thursday or Friday or for other kids like Bean who are in a different math course from the one they're being tested for. I'm not sure how it's supposed to help a child who is a year or two behind in math, but for Bean it's been a great thing-- he finds it very encouraging, because the math is a year behind him it's very simple and he just flies through them. The Elluminate lets him know what the Scantron is going to cover, so he doesn't mind doing them. He's had a few reading Scantrons as well, but that's pretty much a joke as Bean hit the [artificially-set] ceiling for that performance test. He doesn't need to do the reading Elluminate at all, but he enjoys them more than the tests (which he finds "somewhat babyish" ).

For Boobah, it's just been the monthly conference. She's doing well, making good progress, and she's happy. She does an Elluminate once a week called "Monday Funday" which is completely optional-- the teacher reads a story to two classes of K and 1 students (it usually ends up being about 25 kids). She absolutely loves them, and we get to count the time so it gives me an extra 40-60 minutes of time to deal with the other kiddos (she doesn't always need someone with her, though she prefers that someone be there). Boobah also has face-to-face AIMSWeb Screenings (basic literacy/numeracy-- think DIBELS) three times a year. In fact, one of them is coming up soon. That's not a bid deal either, though-- unlike her brother, she does not need me to sit and hold her while she reads through. She's a lot easier to deal with, school-wise than Bean was in a lot of ways. The curriculum is a much better fit at the age-appropriate levels than it ever was for her brother. Of course that leaves me concerned about Bella, but we'll cross that bridge when we come to it.
post #89 of 216
Rynna, the reason we spend so much of our time at the computer for our lessons with K and 1st grade is because I prefer to just do what the lesson tells me to do so I don't have to think. Right now I'm in survival mode, just trying to get through my days. I'm bipolar, and unfortunately I'm in a rare period of rapid cycling so having the ability to just sit and read right off the screen has been a HUGE benefit to me. We have also had to institute a strict time-based schedule for me to avoid my spending all my time playing computer games, curled up in a ball on the sofa, or running around like mad cleaning to ensure that I get everything done that needs done. We *probably* are one of those families that the kids would be better off in public school, but I'm dedicated enough to this right now that I'm fighting myself with every bit of me to make it work out. I just have to keep fighting for a few more months, this is a normal winter thing for me and will ease up around March or so.

For us in our VA, the elluminate sessions aren't really required but highly encouraged at the grades I'm teaching. We've done a couple, and I'm going to get the girls doing the ones that our teacher has going this week also. She does one a week for math and one for reading for each grade, so they will have two sessions each this week (although they will both be in the K reading session together) We also do a phone conference every 6-8 weeks, I've had 3 conferences so far this year. The teacher is pretty relaxed, she is really good with not getting *too* involved in things and just providing the support that we need when I'm having trouble with something.

And I just have to say, I'm REALLY grateful for this support thread. With my bipolar, it really helps me to have the extra accountability that this has given me. It also is helping me to stay focused on doing lessons with the kids and staying consistent. Thanks to all of you for these discussions, it has done a lot for helping me this year.
post #90 of 216
Cat, not to downplay your plight, but if nothing else, you should know some of us who aren't bipolar are also wasting time, hyperactively cleaning, or curled up somewhere doing nothing

Hey, does anyone know if the local district covers learning disability evaluating for homeschoolers and how to do this? I sent a note today to the teacher to ask her. We need to get my 8yo's eyes checked and most likely he needs glasses, but also, despite how well he reads (pretty fluid, not too choppy) and spells, he is jumbling some words and switching words around ("reading this sentence" might be seen by him as "sentence reading") and omitting or replacing some small words with others (like in for on).
post #91 of 216
Cat, I've seen people with no extenuating circumstances to speak of claim that 90% of kindergarten and first grade were online with K12, or that it was "more computer time than I was led to believe". History is much easier to do online in most cases, but all classes could be offline at those grade levels with minimal trouble (again with the exception of history-- that would be a pain in the neck). I briefly had my nieces enrolled one year, and my younger niece (then a first grader) has severe SPD. Everything had to be on paper for her, because she just wasn't capable of looking at a screen for that long (even now as a fourth grader, that would likely prove difficult if not impossible for her). I had to plan very carefully to minimize her screen time, and I managed to accommodate that. (Please note that I could have had an IEP created for her which would allow me to receive extra ink cartridges, so that I could print absolutely everything for her. In fact, I had fully intended to request an IEP evaluation on her behalf; It was a HUGE part of the reason that she was enrolled.)

Gina: It will depend on your state's laws, and the way that your school interacts with the state and local districts. That said, your own school is responsible for the evaluations (I'm pretty sure special education funding is mandatory in every state). What will probably happen is that your school will contract with an agency local to you that will deal with the actual evaluation. That seems to be the way that it works in most states.
post #92 of 216
Oh I know Rynna. I have a friend that used k12 last year with her dd for K and she hated it. She said that it was just soooooo much computer time and she didn't like the time and all that. Funny thing is that now, I'm doing K and literally the ONLY subject of hers that we are doing at the computer is history. DH reads the lang. arts stories to the girls at bedtime, and the next morning I do all the activities associated with that story (I read through the OLS plans while he's reading to them at bedtime and take notes on what we'll do that day for the story's activities) Math, dh does that at the dining table after supper each night with the girls while I'm putting in grades from assessments on the other stuff we did that day. And we all know phonics is offline............... lol I rarely use the computer for most lessons, but when I'm in a place like I am now (today seems to be a pretty even day so far for me though, maybe I'm changing my pattern) it truly is a godsend to me. I still do all our lessons AT my computer desk though so that I have access to the comp if we need/want it.

Gina, I know a lot of people who waste lots of time like that too. My dh is one of them.............. lol

So is anyone else planning on doing lessons through Christmas break? We took some extra time off for Thanksgiving, and I need to keep our routines up as much as possible, so I'm planning on continuing lessons through the break instead of taking off the whole 2 weeks. We'll take Christmas and New Year's off (erm, the days that dh has off for those days that is) but I'm planning on keeping lessons going for my own sanity. I can't afford to have us out of routine right now, so we're not taking off. Anyone else?
post #93 of 216
Quote:
Originally Posted by kittie313 View Post

So is anyone else planning on doing lessons through Christmas break? We took some extra time off for Thanksgiving, and I need to keep our routines up as much as possible, so I'm planning on continuing lessons through the break instead of taking off the whole 2 weeks. We'll take Christmas and New Year's off (erm, the days that dh has off for those days that is) but I'm planning on keeping lessons going for my own sanity. I can't afford to have us out of routine right now, so we're not taking off. Anyone else?
Breaks are a nightmare for us, yes the time off is great but getting dd to start doing the work again is very very difficult so while we may go slower during the holidays we don't stop. I actually got into an argument with CAVA about not being able to get our 3rd grade courses early since we finished 2nd early but I guess they were not shipping out anything if completed past April. This year I'll make sure we finish by March to keep us working though the summer
post #94 of 216
Hi,

I'm thinking about using K12 starting in January because things just aren't getting done around here. I'm really feeling pretty okay with a "just tell me what to do and don't make me think too much about it" type of curriculum right now, even if it's just for this semester and then we do something else for next year.

So, for those who use CAVA, I have some questions...

1. How often do you have a meeting (phone or f2f) with the "teacher."

2. How easy/difficult is it to customize? Is there flexibility to mix things up a bit? For ex: Could DD1 (first grade) be in K-History, 2nd grade Science, 1st grade math, 1st grade LA?

3. Is customizing lessons allowed? For example, the sample K history lesson is on the Wright brothers. Could I substituate a more interesting living book about the Wright Bros. to read to DD as long as it covers the same information and addresses the objectives? Of course, it occurs to me that CAVA would really have no way of knowing one way or the other.

4. Are there hands on activities with the art lessons? What about music?

Our other way of getting some K12 stuff is going through another charter and buying individual courses (this is my preference, actually), but they're full right now and I have no idea when space will be available for DD.

Thank you for your help.
post #95 of 216
Quote:
Originally Posted by GinaRae View Post
Hey, does anyone know if the local district covers learning disability evaluating for homeschoolers and how to do this? I sent a note today to the teacher to ask her.
I'm pretty sure the way it works in CA is that the school (CAVA) handles the evaluating process, so you are heading in the right direction contacting the teacher.

Quote:
Originally Posted by kittie313 View Post

So is anyone else planning on doing lessons through Christmas break? We took some extra time off for Thanksgiving, and I need to keep our routines up as much as possible, so I'm planning on continuing lessons through the break instead of taking off the whole 2 weeks. We'll take Christmas and New Year's off (erm, the days that dh has off for those days that is) but I'm planning on keeping lessons going for my own sanity. I can't afford to have us out of routine right now, so we're not taking off. Anyone else?
We didn't do much over Thanksgiving, but we'll probably do some over christmas break.




1. How often do you have a meeting (phone or f2f) with the "teacher."
We have one face to face per 1/4, and I think we're supposed to have a phone conference every month, but my teacher hasn't called me at all this year.
2. How easy/difficult is it to customize? Is there flexibility to mix things up a bit? For ex: Could DD1 (first grade) be in K-History, 2nd grade Science, 1st grade math, 1st grade LA?
It used to be easier to customize, but they don't actually do placement testing anymore (all the teachers I've talked to are pretty pissed about that!) so your daughter would start with all 1st grade classes. If she needs to go up in LA or Math, you teacher can request that after you start. For the other classes, if you finish them early, they will send you the next grade (as long as they are finished by April, I think).

3. Is customizing lessons allowed? For example, the sample K history lesson is on the Wright brothers. Could I substituate a more interesting living book about the Wright Bros. to read to DD as long as it covers the same information and addresses the objectives? Of course, it occurs to me that CAVA would really have no way of knowing one way or the other. Yeah, that's no problem. They have lesson and unit objectives listed in the curriculum that they want the kids to meet. How they get there is up to you. At every face to face (so once a quarter) you have to turn in one assignment per subject, and those need to be directly from the curriculum.

4. Are there hands on activities with the art lessons? What about music?
There is an art project that goes with every lesson. The music curiculum is awful, IMO, but there are some activities to do.
post #96 of 216
Quote:
Originally Posted by Satori View Post
Breaks are a nightmare for us, yes the time off is great but getting dd to start doing the work again is very very difficult so while we may go slower during the holidays we don't stop. I actually got into an argument with CAVA about not being able to get our 3rd grade courses early since we finished 2nd early but I guess they were not shipping out anything if completed past April. This year I'll make sure we finish by March to keep us working though the summer
LOL I have a similar plan! I hate the idea of taking a summer break, especially in phonics right now, so I'm fast-tracking our lessons so that I can finish them all in March-ish and then order the next level as we finish each one, and just keep going forward without a real "break" so to speak. Although, dh and I have discussed a lot lately about the idea of going independent with hsing instead of staying with OHVA next school year, we're going to take a look at it at the start of the year when we finish 2nd quarter (ends 1/8) I'm a bit behind in several subjects right now with the girls, and am planning on getting us up to 50% in everything before that date, so if I can pull off that kind of momentum then I will keep at it if we decide to stay with OHVA. We're going to determine based on how much they've grown the first half of the year, and see what happens with it all then. I have a feeling though that we'll likely stay with OHVA just because of my bipolar and tendency to rapid cycle from Halloween until around tax day every year, strictly to make it easier for me to stay on track and for others to jump in and help when needed.

I'm really looking forward to being in the downhill slide of the school year, this first half has been sooooo difficult to me and just knowing that we're over halfway through the year come 1/8 will be a huge relief to me and help me stay focused better I think.
post #97 of 216
Does anyone else have a child doing 2nd grade Language Arts? I'm really not enjoying it. I hate that they have all the comp/spelling/GUM all mushed in with the literature (and I know I'm not the only one with the complaint that 2nd grade should be destranded like 3rd and up) and there seem to be long periods of time where there isn't any real literature - we've been reading a lot of silly non-fiction articles that seem so clearly directed towards answering questions about passages on the state test (that my dd won't even be taking because she's only in 1st grade) lately. I'm also thinking ahead to what I know is coming up in 3rd grade LA, and I can't help but feel like DD is going to be bored stiff. DS loved it, but DD is a different kid and, while she reads well, she still likes books to be visually appealing. What I remember of 3rd grade LA, it was really dry.
post #98 of 216
Quote:
Originally Posted by kittie313 View Post
So is anyone else planning on doing lessons through Christmas break? We took some extra time off for Thanksgiving, and I need to keep our routines up as much as possible, so I'm planning on continuing lessons through the break instead of taking off the whole 2 weeks. We'll take Christmas and New Year's off (erm, the days that dh has off for those days that is) but I'm planning on keeping lessons going for my own sanity. I can't afford to have us out of routine right now, so we're not taking off. Anyone else?
I was going to, but then Jack was upset that his brothers get an extra week off as it is. I may just let him have the 2 weeks and take the time for ME to catch up on other things. Not set in stone yet though...
post #99 of 216
Quote:
Originally Posted by eclipse View Post
...... and there seem to be long periods of time where there isn't any real literature......
Interesting... there is SO MUCH reading (stories and novels) in 3rd grade. SO MUCH. Add on the reading he does for science, art and history and he's overwhelmed. This is a kid with no reading problems either.
post #100 of 216
Quote:
Originally Posted by GinaRae View Post
Interesting... there is SO MUCH reading (stories and novels) in 3rd grade. SO MUCH. Add on the reading he does for science, art and history and he's overwhelmed. This is a kid with no reading problems either.
YES YES YES!!!!

My 3rd grader DOES have reading problems and overwhelming doesn't even begin to describe where we are with it. I brought it up with his with our teacher and all I got was more elluminate classes and don't forget to do Study Island. He doesn't need more work....it's the opposite...he needs less and at a lower grade level...but they won't do that because he scored "at grade level" with the scantron testing.
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