April 1, 2019 we started homeschooling again. As you may recall, I homeschooled Rusty in second grade, four years ago. It felt like a necessity at the time -- he had had a rough year and HATED school. As a first-grader!
So I homeschooled him that entire year. Was it a success? Not so much. But it was a positive.
Fast forward to now. The kids had been open-enrolled in another district, and loved it. It was small, and there weren't behavior issues in the classroom. But there was one major drawback that had become more and more apparent: they were behind.
Adelaide had been complaining about the lack of new material since starting there; in fact, she didn't start anything new until midway through this year -- a year and a half since switching schools!
As a result, early on this school year, I made the decision that this would be our last year there. Even though we loved it, we could not sacrifice learning. So what would we do? I leaned toward online or homeschool; Dad insisted on returning to our resident district.
We compromised. I decided to pull them out for their last quarter of the year and attempt to catch them up so they would be in line with their peers should we return to Ellsworth. Instead of investing in expensive materials, I found a program online. And it's free!
Easy Peasy All-in-One Homeschool. Easy for me, that is. Not so much for them.
The one class I wanted to focus on -- the class where they felt most behind -- was math. Going through EP's curriculum, I discovered something troubling (but suspected): Adelaide (a bright, studious girl) would need to enroll in 6th grade math; in fact, material was unknown to her at day 45 (one quarter into sixth grade). Rusty faired only slightly better: he needed to start at day 15, just three weeks into the school year. In other words, Adelaide was a year and a half behind, Rusty 3/4 of a year behind.
Since then, I've been relieved to find maybe they weren't so far behind after all; maybe the EP curriculum is just that advanced. Adelaide is now working with radicals and nth roots and such -- I have a feeling this is beyond 7th grade, maybe even 8th grade.
So, now, instead of continuing with math curriculum throughout the entire summer, as I had thought we would do, we can probably just focus on reviewing what we've done over the past month (for Adelaide). Rusty hasn't worked at as quick a pace, so he will continue on through the sixth level.
We've been so focused on math, that I've had the kids stick with one lesson per day in the other subjects (which also includes language and Bible!) without doing anything extra. Until now!
I was so excited to see a short story competition so I added that to their required work. Well, I tried anyway. Rusty has not completed it. But Adelaide has. I love it! Her writing has always been wonderful, and I am so proud. So here it is: A Cat Known As Writer's Block.
Good luck, Adelaide! And to all three of us (just a few short weeks before the school year is officially "over")!
Raised on a farm in Rushford, Minnesota, one of nine children. Graduated from Winona State University in 2001. Majored in English Writing and Minored in Women's Studies and Art. Studied Interior Design at Dakota County Technical College from 2004-05. Married Benjamin Ries of Vermillion, Minnesota, in August of 2005. Moved to Spearfish, South Dakota (thus putting Interior Design studies on hold) in September 2005. Welcomed children Adelaide in 2006 and Rusty in 2007. Moved to Zimmerman. Minnesota in December of 2007, then to El Paso, Wisconsin in May of 2011.