krisa's blog

Choosing Curriculum

Are you making your final selections in regard to curriculum for the new school year? I know that many of the moms I'm talking to, are doing just that. As you're narrowing down your options, please keep in mind the following guidelines which originally appeared as an e-newsletter from the Struggling Learner website.

When choosing homeschool curriculum there are several factors that you want to take into consideration.

Teacher Mode

My oldest child is becoming very interested in learning how to spell and write words. The other day, she wanted to write her little sister’s name which begins with the letter K. Like most children her age, that letter ‘K’ was a booga bear!  I made a mental note that we’d work on forming that letter correctly the next time we practiced handwriting. When that glorious teaching moment occurred (keep reading- it didn’t start off too gloriously), I found myself moving very quickly from mommy mode to teacher mode. In reflection, I realized that there were certain things I did that helped keep us from getting derailed. I thought I’d share these ideas and tips with you today.

A Tool for Managing Challenging Behavior

During my years as a classroom teacher, I often had students who had been diagnosed with ADD or ADHD.  Usually, they were very caring little boys who were easily distractED and often demonstrated behavior that was highly distractING

There was only so much that I could do as a classroom teacher to get to the root of these problems. One day, however, a co-worker shared a tool that was quite useful in helping these very loving, intelligent, but challenging children become more cognizant of their actions.  She called it the ‘Rocket Race’.

Testing: Scores and S'Mores

I can’t believe how quickly the weeks and months are flying by.  My family and I actually have an invitation to a home school graduation ceremony this Month!  Apparently, the 2012-13 school year is rapidly coming to a close.   For many of you, standardized testing will be a part of your end of the year activities, and realizing how stressful the idea of testing can be; I thought I would direct you to a great article that Betty Statnick wrote a few years ago.  It’s called, Testing: Scores and S’Mores.

The Accessibility Summit

I’m excited to tell you about an upcoming conference being held in the Washington D.C. area on April 19th-20th, 2013.  The 13th annual, ACCESSIBILITY SUMMIT is a conference designed for families/caregivers, churches, teachers, and other professionals connected to the special needs community.

This is a very organized and informative conference. I attended last year, and came away with resources and knowledge that I have referred to throughout the year. I am really looking forward to hearing this year’s keynote speakers.  They are...

A Primer on Using the Dictionary by BETTY STATNICK

   Many College registrars look for good study skills in enrolling students, "We find that all students, not just the ones who have some learning struggles, are very deficient in study skills."

"One of the most important skills students can learn in school is the ability to use language in an effective way...the single most important tool in the educational process of acquiring language skills is a dictionary that meets the needs of the student." (foreward to "Webster's New World Children's Dictionary")

My Child Can Hear But...

   Several months ago I had the privilege of meeting Cheri Moore, a former special education teacher, who has been trained in Dr. Guy Berard’s Auditory Integration Training. She was kind enough to introduce me to Dr. Berard’s book, Hearing Equals Behavior and Dancing in the Rain, by Annabel Stehli.  Both books were  fascinating reads. Since that time, I’ve told people that I know just enough about Auditory Integration Training or AIT, to be dangerous!  With that said, I want to take this opportunity to tell you what I’ve learned, and how it may be helpful to your son or daughter. 

What's So Important About IEPs?

Is there anything more confusing than an IEP? If your child has OR has had one in the past, you know what I'm talking about. It seems like the same thing is stated 2 or 3 times, in 2 or 3 different ways throughout the document- creating a rather large stack of papers. Well, a few years ago, HSLDA Special Needs Consultant, Betty Statnick, addressed this topic. I'm reposting her thoughts for you today. I hope you will find this helpful if you are pondering the question-What’s So Important About IEPs?

Math- Help!

 

   Confession- I am not a math person.  I came to this conclusion while in high school.  I made good grades, but one day my Geometry teacher, who always began each school year by saying, “There are no dumb questions in this class.”; had to hold back spontaneous laughter after I challenged that statement with a sincere question...

 

Teaching Vs. Assigning

You will need to remind yourself that even a robot can "bark out" assignments: "Work page 32 in math book. Do page 25 in your language workbook. Reading textbook: Read the story beginning on page 40 and answer the questions at the end of that story." In that sort of setup, you would simply function as a study hall monitor who would peek in occasionally to see if your child appeared to be on task. 

Teaching, however, is in stark contrast to that kind of arrangement. As one homeschool mom quipped, "Teaching is not just checking off pages and clocking in time."

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