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#31 of 52 Old 12-08-2008, 05:33 AM - Thread Starter
 
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So it looks like the disadvantages would be 1) the curriculum is not a good fit for everyone (single learning style and workbook oriented) and 2) the teacher/school admins can vary a lot and could be very rigid.

The advantages would be that 1) with the right support from the teacher and school the curriculum would provide a framework that I could supplement or adapt and 2) it's free .

I will definitely check into the Options programs--I just discovered that the Aurora Options school is a few blocks from our house!! It looks like this would be similar in that we would still have the support of the public school system and free materials (to borrow) but there would be a choice of currriculum. It also looks like they offer some fun classes--drama, music, PE--that would be nice to do in a group setting.

Thank you for all of the input. And thanks for the lively debate about homeschooling vs. pulic schooling at home. Personally, I like the idea of having the support of professionals. And at least right now I feel like I will need some kind structured framework to work with. Maybe once we get on a roll I will feel more confident to just go with the flow.
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#32 of 52 Old 12-08-2008, 01:07 PM
 
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The advantages would be that 1) with the right support from the teacher and school the curriculum would provide a framework that I could supplement or adapt and 2) it's free .
Not trying to be negative, but I think that for most children, supplementing after they do the amount of work required is unrealistic. One of the challanges for moms who homeschool in a "school at home" way is getting the kids to do the work. Starting out assuming that you will do K12 (or any other school at home program) and supplement it is, IMHO, setting yourself up for a battle with your child.

Adapting may or may not be allowed, depending on your charter. And they may or may not change the rules in the middle. And I watched a friend go through major crap with a charter.

Free always, always, always comes with strings.

This is the thing. Traditional schooling with worksheets and neat little objectives for the week required a certain amount of energy to make happen. With my child who attends school, that energy comes the teacher and the other kids. Because everyone will turns the work in, she happily does it and turns it in.

For a child at home, any time they are doing something they don't want to do, the energy has to come from mom. You have to make them. You have to make them do everything single little thing that you think they should that they don't want to. If you use a charter, you have to make them do everything single little thing that that the charter thinks they should, even if they don't want to and even if you don't see the point or think it is just too much. For many moms, it's a big energy drain.

When a child is learning things that are interesting to them in ways that work for them, much of the energy comes from the child and only a little from the mom. And as any vetern homeschooling mom can tell you, just because it looks fun and intersting to you doesn't mean that it will be to your child.

My child who homeschool uses a curriculum (oak meadow), but it is a jumping off point. We can modify it to suit her to our hearts content. Using it makes planning easier and introduces her to new things, but we can just talk about topics rather than writing about them, or skip things, etc. because it is just between the two of us. We selected it together based on her learning style.

I don't make either of my kids do school work.

but everything has pros and cons  shrug.gif

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#33 of 52 Old 12-08-2008, 02:22 PM
 
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Not trying to be negative, but I think that for most children, supplementing after they do the amount of work required is unrealistic. One of the challanges for moms who homeschool in a "school at home" way is getting the kids to do the work. Starting out assuming that you will do K12 (or any other school at home program) and supplement it is, IMHO, setting yourself up for a battle with your child.

Adapting may or may not be allowed, depending on your charter. And they may or may not change the rules in the middle. And I watched a friend go through major crap with a charter.

Free always, always, always comes with strings.

This is the thing. Traditional schooling with worksheets and neat little objectives for the week required a certain amount of energy to make happen. With my child who attends school, that energy comes the teacher and the other kids. Because everyone will turns the work in, she happily does it and turns it in.

For a child at home, any time they are doing something they don't want to do, the energy has to come from mom. You have to make them. You have to make them do everything single little thing that you think they should that they don't want to. If you use a charter, you have to make them do everything single little thing that that the charter thinks they should, even if they don't want to and even if you don't see the point or think it is just too much. For many moms, it's a big energy drain.

When a child is learning things that are interesting to them in ways that work for them, much of the energy comes from the child and only a little from the mom. And as any vetern homeschooling mom can tell you, just because it looks fun and intersting to you doesn't mean that it will be to your child.

My child who homeschool uses a curriculum (oak meadow), but it is a jumping off point. We can modify it to suit her to our hearts content. Using it makes planning easier and introduces her to new things, but we can just talk about topics rather than writing about them, or skip things, etc. because it is just between the two of us. We selected it together based on her learning style.

I don't make either of my kids do school work.
You've almost completely outlined my issues/ concerns with charter schools.

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#34 of 52 Old 12-08-2008, 07:38 PM
 
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Not trying to be negative, but I think that for most children, supplementing after they do the amount of work required is unrealistic. One of the challanges for moms who homeschool in a "school at home" way is getting the kids to do the work. Starting out assuming that you will do K12 (or any other school at home program) and supplement it is, IMHO, setting yourself up for a battle with your child.

Adapting may or may not be allowed, depending on your charter. And they may or may not change the rules in the middle. And I watched a friend go through major crap with a charter.

Free always, always, always comes with strings.

This is the thing. Traditional schooling with worksheets and neat little objectives for the week required a certain amount of energy to make happen. With my child who attends school, that energy comes the teacher and the other kids. Because everyone will turns the work in, she happily does it and turns it in.

For a child at home, any time they are doing something they don't want to do, the energy has to come from mom. You have to make them. You have to make them do everything single little thing that you think they should that they don't want to. If you use a charter, you have to make them do everything single little thing that that the charter thinks they should, even if they don't want to and even if you don't see the point or think it is just too much. For many moms, it's a big energy drain.

When a child is learning things that are interesting to them in ways that work for them, much of the energy comes from the child and only a little from the mom. And as any vetern homeschooling mom can tell you, just because it looks fun and intersting to you doesn't mean that it will be to your child.

My child who homeschool uses a curriculum (oak meadow), but it is a jumping off point. We can modify it to suit her to our hearts content. Using it makes planning easier and introduces her to new things, but we can just talk about topics rather than writing about them, or skip things, etc. because it is just between the two of us. We selected it together based on her learning style.

I don't make either of my kids do school work.


dang, make it sound like that and no one will want to try it. Both I and ecplise and a lot of other people have found k12 to work quite well. Perhaps you have chosen not to read our posts? We don't do busy work (you make it sound like were doing 6 hours of busy work every day), we may do 1 work sheet a day but its more like 1 a week and we use other materials then just what k12 provides. It sounds like those who really hate k12 are coming at it from an unschooling POV which doesn't work for a lot of people (like me, I'm a strong believer in classical education which is 180 from unschooling). Different things work for different families and the beauty of k12 is that if it doesn't work then you can easily unenroll with no fuss and no lost money.

Seriously?
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#35 of 52 Old 12-08-2008, 08:12 PM
 
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dang, make it sound like that and no one will want to try it. Both I and ecplise and a lot of other people have found k12 to work quite well. Perhaps you have chosen not to read our posts? We don't do busy work (you make it sound like were doing 6 hours of busy work every day), we may do 1 work sheet a day but its more like 1 a week and we use other materials then just what k12 provides. It sounds like those who really hate k12 are coming at it from an unschooling POV which doesn't work for a lot of people (like me, I'm a strong believer in classical education which is 180 from unschooling). Different things work for different families and the beauty of k12 is that if it doesn't work then you can easily unenroll with no fuss and no lost money.
Off the internets!!! Study!!

There's a wide difference in charter requirements by state. in MN, k12 kids have to go to a school 5 hours a week.
OP- look at your states requirements and go from there.

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#36 of 52 Old 12-08-2008, 08:23 PM
 
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Off the internets!!! Study!!

There's a wide difference in charter requirements by state. in MN, k12 kids have to go to a school 5 hours a week.
OP- look at your states requirements and go from there.
I'm taking a break before my head explodes, the kids are making me and driving me crazy and its futile to try working.

In CA there's no such requirement, you have to report the time you spend on lessons but it seems most of the moms I know just accept the default times it gives which ends up being 5 hours and 45 min of daily instruction. In truth we do about 2 hours to do all the work then dd spends about 40 minutes a day doing 2 head sprout lessons which she usually does if she wakes up before I do (which is most days).

Seriously?
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#37 of 52 Old 12-08-2008, 08:32 PM
 
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There's a wide difference in charter requirements by state.
Yep. In some states, kids need to do all the work and turn it all in. In some states unenrolling is more complicated than others. And if the reason you did it was to get all the cool stuff, turning all back in can be painful.

I'm not knocking it, really. I'm just saying that if someone is going to use it, they should do their research and go in with their eyes wide open.

just curious -- for those who use it and like, how long have you been using it and what grades are you kids using? I wonder if the grades one is using makes a difference, or just the charter you are going through.

but everything has pros and cons  shrug.gif

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#38 of 52 Old 12-08-2008, 08:55 PM
 
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Yep. In some states, kids need to do all the work and turn it all in. In some states unenrolling is more complicated than others. And if the reason you did it was to get all the cool stuff, turning all back in can be painful.

I'm not knocking it, really. I'm just saying that if someone is going to use it, they should do their research and go in with their eyes wide open.

just curious -- for those who use it and like, how long have you been using it and what grades are you kids using? I wonder if the grades one is using makes a difference, or just the charter you are going through.

I think the grade levels do make a difference, we tried CAVA last year in 1st grade and it was a nightmare to the point that even if we stay with CAVA for a couple years I will not enroll younger dd until 2nd grade. There was just soooo much work! Most of it was the language arts/phonics stuff making it such a nightmare, oh yes, the music and art lessons were awful too! Plus we had a teacher from hell who demanded to see 5 hours worth of busy work a day when we met with her and it was just ridiculous. I pulled her out within 2 months.

We moved and decided to give it another try after talking to a lot of families. Were doing 2nd grade now and the work load is way less then last year and no crazy teacher wanting all the busy work. 1st grade we were spending 8-12 hours a day trying to keep up, now we do like 2 hours and were moving ahead. The only thing I don't like is the fact that they made us start at the beginning of 2nd even though we were 3 months into the school year so were still playing catch up but were getting there without much difficulty. We've only been doing CAVA this year for about 2 months but this time around has been nothing like the nightmare of last year.

Seriously?
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#39 of 52 Old 12-09-2008, 01:26 AM
 
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Yep. In some states, kids need to do all the work and turn it all in. In some states unenrolling is more complicated than others. And if the reason you did it was to get all the cool stuff, turning all back in can be painful.

I'm not knocking it, really. I'm just saying that if someone is going to use it, they should do their research and go in with their eyes wide open.

just curious -- for those who use it and like, how long have you been using it and what grades are you kids using? I wonder if the grades one is using makes a difference, or just the charter you are going through.

I definitely think it's important to know what you're getting into. Here, we definitely don't have the 5 hours in school requirement that MN has, although there is a "Community Day" option for families who decide they want to use it (a 5ish hour, one day a week, school type experience. I don't really know what goes on there, as I decided against it when I heard they said the pledge of allegiance . ) Anyhow, I can unenroll any time I feel like it and certainly would if I felt it was infringing upon my ability to be automous in my kids' education.

Anyhow, as to the ages/grade levels - I have two kids with CAVA, and they are 5 (technically in K, but in 1st grade language arts and math, and nearing the completion of the other K curriculum, so will probably be at all 1st grade level come january) and 7 (was in 1st grade at his B&M charter school last year, but is now in 3rd grade and moving into 4th grade curriculum).

For DD, it's really very little time spent. The things that they are expected to know by the end of a lesson are things she usually already knows, or can learn with a simple explanation (for example, the science lesson yesterday was about conserving electricity and water - the only things she was expected to be able to do by the end of the lesson was one way to conserve each thing, and the difference between conserving and wasting) - so if she's not in the mood to do the lesson, we don't do it and if she already knows the material, I just check off the lesson. If she doesn't know it, I figure out how to workt he concepts into something else we're doing for the day. She hates their music program, so I just talk about the lesson objectives when we're listening to other music (Like, what's the tempo of this song? Fast or slow? What would it sound like faster? What about slower?) and then check it off. She's not a fan of the art projects in the art lessons (though she doesn't mind the art history part of it) so we only do them if she feels like it. We only have to show one sample at the face to face, so if she decides to do any projects, we make sure to take one. If she were to not choose to do any, I would look through the art she does on her own and pick something that was similar enough to their projects to slap a lesson # on it and take that in. We don't do the phonics program at all, because she's reading at least a year ahead of level - maybe two. For literature, we read the stories and talk about the suggested questions, and she does whatever parts of the lessons seem apealing (she doesn't like to be pushed into art, so she hates the lessons that ask her to illustrate a story, but she might later sit down and write or draw something related to what we studied.) For math, we almost never use the work book. She's pretty intuitive with math so far, so I'll usually just give her the assessment - written if she feels like it, orally if she prefers - and move on. If it's something I'm not sure she's enountered before, I'll do my own little lesson based on their suggestions and talk to her about it or use manipulatives until I think she gets it.

For ds, he's pretty self motivated and does a lot on his own. He knows what's on his schedule from logging in, and I don't have to do much encouraging. I discuss things with him, but he chooses which parts he wants to do, and asks for help when he thinks he needs it.

I think it would be very difficult if a charter required doing and/or turning in every piece of work. I would not have signed up for something like that, and if my charter ever changed to require that, I'd be out in a half a second. I also think it's easy for us because my kids are, as the charter puts it, advanced learners. They're ahead of grade level, so if they "slack off" for awhile, it's no big deal. It's also not difficult for them to get the concepts CAVA/k12 expects them to learn. If my kids were struggling, I'd probably go in a different direction. As it is, I doubt I will enroll my youngest the first year he's elligible, unless he changes a lot.
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in the state of SC you need to log 5 hours. it's not the charter school school, but my state that created that stipulation. i had actually enrolled with connections academy but withdrew in august before school started when i found out about the 5 hours (6 hours for kids over grade 3). i posted about it back then & was freaking out. however, i will say...it's not as bad as it seems. i've since found out that you don't need to log "what" yo do to create those 5 hours at all. you aren't accountable for writing it down and such (which was my biggest issue!! i didn't want to tally time all day with my child). you just check off the lesson and type 5 hours in attendance. like k12, you have to turn in several assignments each month, but they are simple assignments. anyway, i can't speak for other states but that's the deal here with logging hours - it's not expected to be seatwork. the teachers know it only takes a couple of hours to complete assignments and they leave the other 3 hours at the discretion of the parents with no explanation needed. hth.

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#41 of 52 Old 12-09-2008, 12:55 PM
 
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in the state of SC you need to log 5 hours. it's not the charter school school, but my state that created that stipulation. i had actually enrolled with connections academy but withdrew in august before school started when i found out about the 5 hours (6 hours for kids over grade 3). i posted about it back then & was freaking out. however, i will say...it's not as bad as it seems. i've since found out that you don't need to log "what" yo do to create those 5 hours at all. you aren't accountable for writing it down and such (which was my biggest issue!! i didn't want to tally time all day with my child). you just check off the lesson and type 5 hours in attendance. like k12, you have to turn in several assignments each month, but they are simple assignments. anyway, i can't speak for other states but that's the deal here with logging hours - it's not expected to be seatwork. the teachers know it only takes a couple of hours to complete assignments and they leave the other 3 hours at the discretion of the parents with no explanation needed. hth.
That's the way it is here, too. There's not a daily/weekly requirement - I think it's a certain # of hours per year that averages to 5 hours or so per day for my 3rd grader and 4ish for my K-er. No one is on hour case if I only record an hour of school in a day, though I usually do more even if we do very little work on the curriculum - and if we take a field trip to the zoo or something, we just mark the whole day as science, or art if we went to the art museum, or math if they spent the day helping grandma bake christmas cookies. No big deal.
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I like the K12 curric and would keep using it if I could afford it myself. I'm pulling my kids out of CAVA at the end of the semester because they are wanting to see more and more of their work (meaning you can't just teach things your own way as much) and they've added 3 more scantron tests per year!!!! I'm sick of all of the testing!!! In the mean time I'm going to refuse the testing.

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I think it would be very difficult if a charter required doing and/or turning in every piece of work. I would not have signed up for something like that, and if my charter ever changed to require that, I'd be out in a half a second. I also think it's easy for us because my kids are, as the charter puts it, advanced learners. They're ahead of grade level, so if they "slack off" for awhile, it's no big deal. It's also not difficult for them to get the concepts CAVA/k12 expects them to learn. If my kids were struggling, I'd probably go in a different direction. As it is, I doubt I will enroll my youngest the first year he's elligible, unless he changes a lot.
They don't want it turned in, but are asking to look in all of the folders/binders and see the work. Especially if you are finishing a subject early and want to order the next one. Our teacher, CAVA@Sonoma, is supposed to look at History Journals, Science labs, Math Journals, and all Writing assignments and confirm that the work is being done. And we just got an email last week that they've added 3 more scantron tests per year.

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#44 of 52 Old 12-09-2008, 05:21 PM
 
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I saw the thing about the scantron testing, but, uh, we're not taking them. I told my teacher we weren't interested, and she said no problem. It seems like it depends a lot upon what teacher you get - mine has never asked to see all the "assignments" and I'd probably be on the phone to someone if she did. And if they insisted, I'd be out. I think that's something that you have to be prepared to do if you sign up for any of the charter homeschool programs - be willing to walk. Otherwise, you really are forced into conforming to the standards of others.
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#45 of 52 Old 12-09-2008, 05:40 PM
 
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I saw the thing about the scantron testing, but, uh, we're not taking them. I told my teacher we weren't interested, and she said no problem. It seems like it depends a lot upon what teacher you get - mine has never asked to see all the "assignments" and I'd probably be on the phone to someone if she did. And if they insisted, I'd be out. I think that's something that you have to be prepared to do if you sign up for any of the charter homeschool programs - be willing to walk. Otherwise, you really are forced into conforming to the standards of others.
I agree, I was wondering though, we haven't been around long enough to really do any scantron tests, we did one for reading and math but it got us the placement we needed/wanted. I personally don't care about the testing, I mean other then its boring why does it matter? Are the test results going to change anything for you? I mean are they going to kick you out of the program if you don't score well enough in their opinion? I look at it this way, I'm getting to use the materials I want for free, taking a couple tests a year for that privilege is not a big deal imo. Now if they start wanting to see tons of busy work then we'd walk but tests? We can deal with that

and yes I know, study! I can't, water heater died and there here replacing it.

Seriously?
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#46 of 52 Old 12-09-2008, 05:51 PM
 
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I don't really care much about the test, except that they annoy my son, so if we can avoid them, we do. In general, testing doesn't bother him, but the initial scantron test he took in Septemeber was really, really long for him, because they started at grade level(and i think they still had him lested as a second grader, so for him it would have been one year below grade level) and he had to keep going until he missed enough in a row to be considered not proficient in that level. . .so his reward for missing a bunch in a row was not having to continue on the test. I'm pretty sure he finally started picking wrong answers so the dang thing would end.

In any case, my teacher said they are requiring students who scored under grade level on the september tests to take these ones, but since we didn't feel like taking them, and ds scored above grade level on the Septemeber ones, they wouldn't require him to do this one. I think he might still have to take the end of the year scontron test, though.
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#47 of 52 Old 02-23-2009, 10:09 PM
 
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Wow, this is a seriously negative thread. :

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Yep. In some states, kids need to do all the work and turn it all in. In some states unenrolling is more complicated than others. And if the reason you did it was to get all the cool stuff, turning all back in can be painful.
If you're talking about variations by state, then are you really saying anything about K12 or even about charter schools aside from "they're all different?"

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I'm not knocking it, really. I'm just saying that if someone is going to use it, they should do their research and go in with their eyes wide open.
A reasonable sentiment, but wow is it ever being expressed with venom.

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just curious -- for those who use it and like, how long have you been using it and what grades are you kids using? I wonder if the grades one is using makes a difference, or just the charter you are going through.
My son has worked through kindergarten, first, and most of second grade as well as half of the third grade math course.

Some of the differences have to do with the schools, but I'd be willing to bet that many have to do with the teachers. K12's philosophy is fairly clear, and favors a far more flexible approach than some of you are describing. One of the things that I heard over and over again, both from the school and from K12, was that we were not supposed to do everything. K12's curriculum is designed to meet the needs of many different kinds of learners, but it is mastery-based. This means that each lesson has an objective and several activities which are designed to help different kinds of learners meet those objectives and master the material. There are stories, there are worksheets, there are projects and activities, and very few are 'necessary' for anything. If your child has mastered the objectives, you don't need to do anything but cross your t-s and dot your i-s.

Bean's Schedule, for those of you who are interested:

Monday: Math. We usually spend 15-30 minutes working on lesson material (math is very easy for my son). He completes at least one assessment, and goes back to whatever he was doing before I called him to do schoolwork. I count at least an hour of time for math, depending on how much work he does and how many other math-related activites he does during the day.

Tuesday: Language Arts. 30-45 minutes on assignments, at least that much time reading (usually not curriculum-related), and library time in the late afternoon/early evening. I count an average of 180 minutes for LA.

Wednesday: Art and History. Bean hates doing art, so we really play up the art-history connection and spend a lot more time on discussion and artists than we do on drawing/painting/etc. History is LOTS of fun for Bean, so more often than not I have to tear him away on these days. He spends an average of 60 minutes on schoolwork these days (more than Monday or Tuesday) and I count at least 120 minutes, based on what he's done, any other history discussions we have, and documentaries we may watch.

Thursday: Science. This is another day when I have to pull him away from his schoolwork. He spends an average of 60 minutes on schoolwork, again, but engages in many supplementary activities. I count at least 120 minutes of school time on Thursdays as well.

Friday: Music. These are short days; We usually do a lesson or two and then spend the rest of the day running like crazy people. 45-60 minutes, depending on his mood.

All the rest of the hours that I count are only peripherally related to the curriculum, if at all. For us, the benefits far, far outweigh the drawbacks right now.

Rynna, Mama to Bean (8), Boobah (6), Bella (4) and Bear (2)
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#48 of 52 Old 02-23-2009, 10:14 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by moondiapers View Post
They don't want it turned in, but are asking to look in all of the folders/binders and see the work. Especially if you are finishing a subject early and want to order the next one.
My son's ALP director and I are actually working on standards for just this sort of eventuality. My son has completed every course in which he's been enrolled "early," and I've been given particular assignments to send to his teacher to prove that he is actually doing the work. Nobody has said that he has to do every single page, though, and I was advised that if we had skipped a particular asked-for assignment that I should simply ask for a different one from that unit.

Rynna, Mama to Bean (8), Boobah (6), Bella (4) and Bear (2)
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#49 of 52 Old 02-24-2009, 09:16 AM
 
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I'm glad somebody finally got on this thread to talk about how K12 is and not how "it's not homeschool" Thanks eilonwy!

Living Simply and Enjoying Life
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#50 of 52 Old 02-24-2009, 09:33 AM
 
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there's a ton of k12 yahoo groups too & the members will be very helpful in answering questions. plus they'll have files with FAQ that you can read.

anyway, just another thought for those of you looking to get more questions answered.

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#51 of 52 Old 09-13-2012, 12:59 PM
 
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Hi Eclipse. I was reading the posts and came across yours. I just recently started K12 in Arizona. I don't quite understand the work sample part. We have a class connect today with his teacher for work samples. What I'm not understanding is do I have to turn in work or will my son be required to do the work during class connect. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

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#52 of 52 Old 09-13-2012, 01:09 PM
 
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I directed this towards Eclipse, but if anyone else can answer. That would be great!

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