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I don't know where I heard/read this, but I remember someone saying how important it was for HSer's to "know" what grade they were in. Now of course this doesn't apply to unschoolers(and I get that!), rather more to a typical hser. The reason was that it gave the child his/her own right to "own" their place in an academic sub-culture.

So, I went to our library's(sp...ies?) Kindergarten Kickoff for ds and got the t-shirtand pencil. And wow! I have a Kindergartener! And a 4th grader(who is confused over the summer what grade she is in
!)

I do agree with this thought, so I encourage it. Even though my dc are "all over the map" when it comes to skill levels and development,we go by what grade they would be in if they were in ps.

How about you??

mp
 

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At least around here it is a question that people (in the grocery store, at the doctor's office, etc.) seem to often ask kids. So, I think it is good to talk with your kids about the concept and the ways they can handle that social situation. Our son usually says "I'm homeschooled and we don't have grades" or "I'm homeschooled and in lots of grades". Sometimes though when he's not in the mood to talk he'll either say his age or what the typical grade would be for a kid his age in school because really that is most what folks are most often asking when they ask about grade is how old the kid is.
 

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We do the grade thing since dd was getting upset at not being able to tell people what grade she was in. She's so excited now to tell people "I'm in 1st grade!"
 

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People always seem to ask, even when all they want to know is her age! I say "Well we homeschool, but she would be in X grade this year." If they want to know specifically to gauge her skills, I'd say "she's all over the map!"
 

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We do just to simplify things. Too often extra-curriculars are arranged by grade rather than age and my son was a bit confused one time when asked. It was simpler to just tell him to say "- grade" and leave it at that.
 

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We do the age/grade though most start their kids at 5 even though it is 6 by law.So lol,some would consider dd *behind* for being 7 and in 1st grade.Ofcourse like many she is all over the grade levels with certain things.
 

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If the conversation is long enough, I say "If we did grades, she would be going into 3rd grade". Dd has been known to answer with a grade to a few people asking. I explain to her that grades are not really a relevant concept to homeschooling and she gets that, is not bothered by not having a label in the least. Who would've thunk?
:
 

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One of my DDs likes to have a nice simple pat answer to this question, so to her it is important to know what grade she would be in if she were in school. She isn't found of talked to strangers away, so just saying "3rd" simplifies things her. My other DD is very chatting and explains that we homeschool, grades are just about sorting kids by age and are pretty meaningless, blah blah.

So I think you should do whatever works for your kid, whatever that happens to be.


On a side note, I don't think it is helpful for children to have it stressed if they are working above grade level. More than once I've seen kids annouce their advanced grade level to their peers and get shunned in return. (just my experience, not wanting to debate -- I've seen this happen to real children and I felt sad for them).
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Linda on the move
On a side note, I don't think it is helpful for children to have it stressed if they are working above grade level. More than once I've seen kids annouce their advanced grade level to their peers and get shunned in return. (just my experience, not wanting to debate -- I've seen this happen to real children and I felt sad for them).
Absolutely. The only grade-levelled materials my kids have ever used are the Singapore Math materials. A few weeks ago my 7yo asked whether the alphanumeric designation on the book she's using means what grade of math she's in (she's finishing 3B). I said "Yeah, but those are grades in Singapore. They don't really match up with Canadian grades. Canadian school kids learn things in somewhat different orders and at a different rate. It's hard to say what that would math up with in Canadian terms." She was happy with that explanation. She has a couple of super-competitive soccer buddies who go to school, and if they'd asked "what grade are you in for homeschooling?" I'd not have wanted her to answer with "well, I'm doing Grade 4 math." Instead she knows to answer with what Grade she'd be in if she went to school.

On the other hand, my 9yo, who has done almost no formal academic work at all, and has had some vision issues, was beginning to feel a little demoralized about his enthusiastic younger sister's penchant for workbooky math. At one point he expressed concern about being slow in his learning -- because he struggles to do pencil and paper work. It was very helpful for me to point out that some of the non-workbook math that he's able to do is not taught until 8th grade or later in the school system, and that much of the science stuff he's enjoyed is intended for high schoolers or college students. I know him well enough to know that he would never share this information publicly, nor would he interpret it to mean he is "at a college level."

Miranda
 

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We are going to be doing our first grade program this year so dd is in her first grade. Most children her age in school are in first grade. If we were comparing to a school's first grade program though she would be advanced in some areas and not in others.
 

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My ds has decided that grades should go by age. He told an employee at the Science Center last week that he was going to sixth grade in October because that's when he would be turning six.
 

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I plan on referring to whatever grade he would be in were he in school, based on his age. I don't plan on basing on where he rates academically. So this year he is in Kindergarten.
 

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Until two weeks ago, I was telling everyone DD1 is going into Kindergarten. Then I found out how much that was going to limit her outside activities - several of the ones that she would really like are for 1st grade and up. So now I'm bumping her to 1st grade.

In public school here, she misses the cut off by 5 days, so it's not really a stretch for her age-wise. And her capabilities fit in with 1st grade much better.
 

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My kids came from a public school setting to homeschooling last year, so we use the grades that they are in according to public school.
 

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I'm torn on this one. Based on age, my oldest would be going to kindergarten this year (her birthday is in Nov, so she'd be one of the older kids in k). But she was in a Montessori preschool last Spring which went through k, and her teacher both recommended she head on to 1st grade next year, and "graduated" her from kindergarten. So I could go either way. She isn't reading much yet, so I have been leaning toward calling it k, but I may have her "skip a grade" at some point.

ZM
 

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I used to just say whatever grade they would be in school (going into 2nd, 5th and 7th respectively) but I've stopped doing that. Like others have said, they are all over the map and we don't really use many workbooks with grade levels (and if I do they aren't usually the *correct* level for age). Plus, I've decided I don't like the whole grade question and have started answering it N/A (homeschooled) on forms. I usually sputter a bit for good measure
If it's IRL I will either just shrug or say "she'd be in 7th if she was in PS, but it doesn't really mean anything to us".

Here's an interesting conversation Kelsey had at her cheer class the other day:

Cheer coach-"Let's get to know each other a little better! What school is everyone in and what grade?"

(at this point all the girls answered and were promptly matched up as in "you two are both going into 8th grade so you can be friends!"
). Now it's Kelsey's turn.

Kelsey-"Well, I'm homeschooled and we don't really do grades."

Coach-"but you must have a grade level you work at?"

Kelsey-"Not really. We just learn stuff until we are done then we learn something else."

One of the mom's observing class-"that's COOL!"

Kelsey-"Yeah, it is!"
 

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I know what grade they'd be in by age-mate which is what most people want to know. I let Ani pick her grade for what she likes to say she is. She chose 4th grade. That is fine as that is pretty much the grade level she is. We school year round and she chooses to advance herself a grade on her birthday in February. For many homeschoolers, including us, grade levels are pretty arbitrary so I don't really worry about what "grade" they are in.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by mamapoppins
I remember someone saying how important it was for HSer's to "know" what grade they were in. .... The reason was that it gave the child his/her own right to "own" their place in an academic sub-culture.
I just wanted to comment on this point from the original post. I don't get this at all. While I can see various practical issues for which it might be helpful to designate a child as an "Nth-grader", I don't understand why, at a psychological level, it would be important for a child to own his or her place in the academic sub-culture that is institutional schooling. I want my children to be free of that sub-culture; I find it limiting, stifling and with entirely the wrong motives underlying it, and this is a large part of why we're homeschooling.

Miranda
 
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