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Gifted Homeschoolers- Deciding the Grade Level - Page 2

post #21 of 27
Well, I will say that sometimes ages on a box (particularly for games) can be helpful -- but usually the description is the most helpful. If you find a game you like, but aren't sure of, look it up online. There will be many reviews, and usually a longer description than on the box, and you will be much better able to determine the fit for your child. You know his strengths and weaknesses, and can choose games/books that alternately stretch and strengthen his skills and his confidence. Not every game or book has to do everything. Also, we've really loved Games for Math and Games for Reading by Peggy Kaye.

As a mother of 4 boys (at least 2 gifted, and two very, very bright), I can tell you that games, stories, and physical activity will go a very long way, especially at his age. I do remember buying my oldest a maze book (intended for 7+ year olds) just after his 3rd birthday, and he finished the entire book in a day and begged for more. It's interesting to me now because he's only recently started to like the physical process of writing. Unless your son really loves workbooks, though, I would probably hold off on them. There are so many interesting things to do!
post #22 of 27
We work with where the interests are and totally skip the grade level thing. Because we homeschool, and it's seen as odd in our family, our relatives are always buying workbooks for gifts (which I think is a bit off the wall, but that's neither here nor there). So I try to eyeball where Z is so I can give them a general guideline - I just flip through a couple workbooks and get an idea for what work goes with what grade level.

She's currently working through the 1st grade level workbooks, but I really don't pull them out that often. I have an entire file drawer full, and I've only done maybe ten pages total with her in the last year. We're doing Well Trained Mind, so we primarily do the workbooks if she's having difficulty with a specific letter or # during copywork, or if we're out in a waiting room or something.

As for games, I just stock up on stuff that she likes to play that doesn't drive me mad. She's digging Othello right now, and she's also really into Uno. I much prefer that to Candyland, so I'm totally egging her on She also really enjoys www.Zoodles.com - it's age based, so I did the eyeball it thing and set the level ahead for her, and now she totally loves it.
post #23 of 27
DD is probably gifted and adores workbooks. (And YES she spends the vast majority of most days digging in the mud or a bucket of water or playdough or building with blocks or playing dress up, or looking at books, or helping me cook and clean, etc etc etc.)

She's 3 and we've been using a huge K book for a while. She'll go through phases where she wants to work on it a LOT for several days. Anyway, some of the writing is too tricky but otherwise it's all pretty easy, stuff she already knows. But it's fun because coloring all the spaces with As or 1s creates a picture, etc. I figure before long we should look at another one but there's still los of pages in this one, and since she sometimes does 15 a day, when she's on a workbook bender I'd rather she had fun with this one for a while.

Eh, I guess it all just depends. A little challenge can be great for this type of kid (like, DD loves to do soduku with her dad, which is tricky but she's very into it) but of course no pushing... I do tend to ignore grade level or age on things and just go by my kid.

But I think this feeds into a greater issue... with such a young gifted kid, where I would normally be entirely unschooly (or rather, not even be thinking of school but just good playtime), it can be tricky at times to navigate anything more formal. DD is at K or above for most things, but she's still only 3. So she pulls us into learning about more advanced things, and I try to find resources and it becomes something where we ARE using materials for an older grade level... I just try to keep myself tuned in to not going too far with it, even as we are pulled along relentlessly by DD Anyway, just saying again that we try to go by the kid and get as much info about a book or product before choosing. And some are hit and miss! We got plenty of presents that were for older kids that were already too "young" for her. And some she's found other ways to play with, and some were busts but we'll use them next kid
post #24 of 27

Logic and critical thinking skills with the gifted

My 4 year old is doing Logic for K-2. I met with an educational psychologist about this and she said to keep moving them ahead. I have gotten a ton of nice products from the Critical Thinking Company. I know how you feel. I can tell my daughter is getting bored with the K because she wants to now answer in Spanish and she does not know a ton of Spanish. I do some at her level to get her going and then switch to a higher level. These work books are the only one's she does not get bored with. I always fear it will be too hard and she will get annoyed and not want to do the work. I start where I know she can ace it and then when it gets too hard I quit on a good note. As far as toys I buy all across the board. Have Fun and Good Luck!
post #25 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by philia View Post
My 4 year old is doing Logic for K-2. I met with an educational psychologist about this and she said to keep moving them ahead. I have gotten a ton of nice products from the Critical Thinking Company. I know how you feel.!
Though we aren't using anything from CTC right now, I love their stuff!

I posted on this thread earlier...we started official "K" yesterday. She thrives on workbooks. For me variety is the key - levels, interests, whatever.

Having an aggressive learner definitely keeps you on your toes!
post #26 of 27

reply

We have to have variety because it gets boring for them. Let me know if you come across anything you like a lot. My curent stuggle is handwriting practice. Both kids get bored. I guess you just have to keep having them do it. I don't think I liked handwriting as a kid either. The educational psychologist said to do legos. It helps their minds to see us do them and just have them be helpers.
post #27 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dar View Post
I agree. There are so many other ways to learn with 3 year olds that are more developmentally appropriate, provide more educational benefit, and are just more fun. IMO, most workbooks for young children are more about giving them something to do to keep them busy and occupied (which makes them useful for things like waiting for a meal to be served in a restaurant) and developing fine motor skills (which can be frustrating when kids really aren't ready).

Lillian has a couple nice pages about homeschool activities for preschoolers and young children - here and here.

I think games are another story - assuming they're fun games. I knew a 3 year old who ruled at Apples to Apples, which is marked "Ages 12 and up" (we played the regular version, not the junior one). Well, actually I thought he picked his dad's card too often, but he certainly could play and play well... with a group that included a number of other players both far younger and far older than 12. As long as he's not physically or mentally too frustrated by the game, why not?
to ALL of that. Although Lillian's stuff is written for every child, they certainly "feed" the gifted child, too. Mine is now 6-1/2yo and reading stories takes a different twist with him (we take turns reading so that I can still model "reading voice" to him and force him to look at pictures to nurture his imagination) but we still read stories--ya know? Cooking with them may mean talking about the measurements, etc.



Quote:
Originally Posted by slvsquared View Post
We work with where the interests are and totally skip the grade level thing. Because we homeschool, and it's seen as odd in our family, our relatives are always buying workbooks for gifts (which I think is a bit off the wall, but that's neither here nor there). So I try to eyeball where Z is so I can give them a general guideline - I just flip through a couple workbooks and get an idea for what work goes with what grade level.

that, too.

The other thing is: there's some merit to giving them stuff that they already CAN do. For one, they can just enjoy it vs. "working". Since our kids are frequently thinking A LOT, this can be a nice break. But it also helps build confidence because they already HAVE mastered it and CAN do it. It's not always "maybe I'll get it"... in the case of things a little below their level, it's nice to have something they can nail every time. Granted, you hope that's not what they're doing ALL the time.

Two other things I wanted to point out, though. Because my son is 6-1/2 and we started dealing with his education about the same time as you, we've probably now been full circle deciding on a method and we also landed on unschooling. That doesn't mean you NEVER use a textbook. To that end, if you come across something you're going to use premade curriculum for, most of the time they have a placement test because they realize that kids develop asynchronously; and they're aware that homeschooled kids may be ahead, behind or at the same level as their age-grade. So for subject-specific curriculum especially, you will often find placement tests. If not, there are also often homeschool forums of parents using the curriculum that can help guide you.

The other thing is that I find mine is in a different "grade" depending on the subject. At 4yo he blew through K level math (both Singapore and Saxon) but now he's 6-1/2yo, hasn't had interest and is probably only about halfway through 1st grade math (with spotty "way ahead" knowledge of multiplication). For reading, there's seriously no way. Even the 4th grade phonics and grammar are ridiculous for him; but he's not yet mature enough to grasp the stories that would allow us to go on to the concepts of theme, tone, etc.

Hope this helps.
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