• Curriculum

    by Published on 06-29-2015 09:03 AM
    1. Categories:
    2. Homeschooling Styles,
    3. Secular Homeschooling,
    4. Curriculum
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    I remember the first time I encounteredCuisenaire rods in a graduate workshop. “Be sure you allow time forkids to play with them,” began the instructor, looking around at aroom full of educators turning the tiny blocks into towers andpatterns of stripes. As we knocked over towers and tried to payattention to the instructions on how to use these colorful littlethings with students, we laughed. Even the adults were drawn toplaying with their math.


    I've since learned that there are amillion ways to play with your math and hold it in your hands. It'snot a necessary step for absolutely every student, but for most, itmakes math more fun, more tactile, and easier to understand. Mathmanipulatives can be a lifeline for some math strugglers, a shortcutto understanding for some thinkers, and a means to get to a deeperunderstanding for others. There are dozens of different products outthere for both arithmetic and geometry and even an array of productsfor algebra. There are also ways to make math hands on by bringing itinto the real world in other ways.


    The simplest math manipulatives areprobably counters. Nearly all of us were born with a nice set of tenof them attached directly to our hands. You can get fancy, of course,and buy a set or you can use what you have around the house. For thesmallest math learners, going from the symbolic abstraction ofnumbers to the reality of a quantity of things sitting in front ofyou is a big step in early learning. In fact, it was a big step inour development as a species to be able to do this. If you and your kids ever want to think about just how big a step, the Terry Jones documentary The Story of 1 is a fun look at the history of how numbers became numbers. We're so used to being able to think of four chairs or four apples or four fingers as just “4” that it's easy to underestimate how hard it is for the brand new learner.


    Next comes the even harder in counting up past your fingers. Going beyond ten means beginning to see a pattern in the way we structure our numbers and understanding placevalue. This is where counters can be useful to start, but can quicklybecome tedious. Different possibilities begin to really open up. Kids ...
    by Published on 06-22-2015 01:05 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Curriculum,
    3. Secular Homeschooling,
    4. General Homeschooling
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    “What works best?” Does that mean there’s one thing, one magic recipe that works all the time, with every learner, in every situation? Probably not. But some things, some approaches, some types of material do work best with this learner, or this group of learners, in these circumstances, at this time. That's what I've learned (or hope I've learned) in the 20-some years I've been working with Latin learners and their families and the 30-some years I've been learning the language myself.

    “What works best in this context?” That's a better question. As a young high-school teacher in 1992, I knew just enough to know that I didn’t have an answer. Then I started to find one. But as the world changed, and learners changed, and the context changed, I found, refined, and eventually discarded answer after answer as "this context" kept changing.

    What works best for learning Latin depends on a lot of factors … factors like
    • who you are, as the parent and teacher
    • who your child is, as a person and as a language learner
    ...
    by Published on 06-15-2015 08:29 AM
    1. Categories:
    2. Curriculum,
    3. Homeschooling with Technology,
    4. General Homeschooling
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    When we moved to our current state we decided to homeschool our oldest. We were already homeschooling our youngest and felt she wouldn't thrive in the public school system here. We started out with traditional homeschool curriculum. It was an epic failure for many, many reasons. Ultimately she wanted an outside ...
    by Published on 02-04-2015 11:00 AM
    1. Categories:
    2. Curriculum,
    3. Secular Homeschooling,
    4. Homeschooling Styles,
    5. General Homeschooling
    Resources and links for celebrating and learning during Black History Month

    February is Black History Month and a great opportunity to teach about issues and actions of people who have helped shape the world.
    Whether speakers, inventors, artists, actors or authors....Black History Month will give you a chance to learn about them all!
    Here is a collection of resources that I have put together to help with that! If you have others, please let us know as well!
    Understand as well, that all parts of this may not be 100% secular!



    ...
    Published on 12-16-2014 12:57 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Curriculum,
    3. Homeschooling High School
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    American School has been a leader in high school distance education for more than a century, offering the accredited high school courses you need at a cost you can afford. In 2015, we’re taking steps to ensure we remain a leader for years to come.

    We know that students learn in different ways. Some prefer an entirely paper-based curriculum, which has been our primary course delivery method since our founding in 1897. Others, however, feel more comfortable learning online. That’s why we are proud to offer entirely online versions of our General High School Program and College Preparatory Program. Both diploma programs consist of 18 units of credit with ample room for electives. For more information about all of our online learning offerings, including our online diploma programs and online exams which are available for most of our paper-based courses, visit www.americanschool.org/online-learning.

    If you are planning on going to community college or directly into the workforce after graduation, consider enrolling in our General High School Program. Students complete 11-13 required courses and may consider taking Business, Career and Technical Education courses as their electives.

    If you are planning on attending college after graduation, consider enrolling in our College Preparatory Program. Students complete 12-15 required courses and may consider taking Fine Arts or World Languages courses as their electives. In order to give our students a wider variety of online World Languages courses, we partnered with Rosetta Stone and are happy to have ten of their most popular courses in our curriculum, including Arabic, Mandarin Chinese and Japanese, all of which are becoming more valuable in the global marketplace, as well as English as a Second Language.

    In its 118-year history, American School has educated more than three million students from across the country and around the world. Many of them, such as bestselling author Christopher Paolini and actress Jessica Alba, have gone on to become famous, but all of our students enjoy the benefits of what we call our Four C’scurriculum, caring student service, credibility and cost.

    Students work entirely at their own pace, but they are never alone. American School tries to make distance learning as personal as possible. For example, our instructors write personalized, handwritten comments when they grade exams in paper-based courses and offer similar feedback when grading exams online. Our staff is available during normal business hours to answer ...
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