View Full Version : 6th Grade (ish) input request

07-24-2010, 11:10 PM
My son(aspergers/age 11) is a very visual learner. I found this out especially during our first year as he really did well with Discover Streaming, Colonial Williamsburg virtual program, we used various topical documentaries and we actually do a lot of filming of the skits he writes. I have added BrainPop and some of Time4Learning. He finds some of the Time4learning 'too young' for him. I am also going to use Teaching Textbooks for math this year. I have a few grade level history books we occasionally reference. From school supply stores I also obtained some poster size historical timelines. We do daily free reading and free writing (on the computer as handwriting is a deterrent). I am not opposed to religious content but strongly believe evolution and critical thought. I have a couple of Janice VanCleave's books for science and math as well. We are very secular and a relaxed eclectic driven in some areas by interest. Planning to use Wii for some PE activities and we did fencing for a while. I would appreciate any suggestions from others as I have only dabbled a bit so far. I have not yet gotten too involved in local homeschool groups as most are very religious and my son can be erratic in some settings- he tends to blurt things that can offend (which is another area we are working on).
I should also add that we use audio books in addition to text for reading- it really seems to help. I am thankful for the library audio books!

thank you

07-25-2010, 02:10 PM
Hi Elizabeth,

I have three visual learners, and Jazz (12) is starting to complain that some things are "too young," too. What are your son's interest areas? Jazz likes history, reading, and writing, so we are using a history core from Sonlight (secularized) this year, as that program is literature-based. He also has a writing tutor who used to work at a local school for 2E kids (bright, but with LDs) who has really helped him take off this past year.

Another thing Jazz liked this year was The Story of Science (http://www.amazon.com/Story-Science-Aristotle-Leads-Way/dp/1588341607/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1280077768&sr=8-1), which is history and science combined. I didn't do anything formal with it--just let him read, but there are teacher's and student guides to go with the first book in the series, at least.

I'll be curious to hear what you think of Teaching Textbooks. We're finishing up RightStart Math and are wondering what to do when it's time for algebra.

07-25-2010, 02:25 PM
update->Thank you for the input- The Story of Science looks awesome- I will definately use that. It looks like the BBC may have done something video-wise with it so I will check that out too!

He loves dogs, his video games(halo/city of heroes/assassins creed/harry potter lego/overlord/fallout 3), he loves to draw, he builds great creations with legos, he does like history (mostly focused on civil war, ww1/ww2) and like writing skits and how to videos for video games. He used to like math and I am trying to get him back there. He enjoys science and we have a decent miroscope we are using with a usborne book on microscopes. I will check out that science link. We talked about reading and it is hard for him to sit still and read so audio books are what we both use.

07-25-2010, 03:11 PM
I hear you on the sitting still issue. I think J.J. is going to be worse than Jazz, though I don't require much of him yet--he's my little unschooler who might not know how to read yet but can tell you where just about any country on the globe is.

We used to be in the habit of taking a walk or going for a bike ride before starting in on the homeschooling each morning, but that went by the wayside this past winter and didn't return this spring. Sending them out to run around the house five times or swing before starting something like reading has been helpful. If we had a trampoline I know that would get a lot of use during/before school time, LOL! We've used WiiFit when the weather is unbearable, and I do like putting it either first in the day or when it seems like they need a break (i.e., I start getting resistance or brains start getting mushy). Protein snacks throughout the day help with the brain mush factor, I've found.

The Sonlight core has me doing a lot of the reading (aloud) so that will help--the kids tend to draw, build things, or move around while listening.

We started with workboxes this year, which helped the "getting things done" part, but the group activities were harder to coordinate with them, and we'll be doing more of those again this year as Jane is reaching the age where she needs "more." I think the woman who publishes the workbox system book has a son with Asperger's, which is what made her come up with her system in the first place. Now, she is extremely structured and I tend to use the boxes in a looser manner (which wouldn't please her based on the tone of her book, LOL), but that might be something to take a look at, especially as your son is a visual learner like my three:

Sue Patrick's Workbox System (http://www.workboxsystem.com/)

The book was helpful to me, but many hsers just see what others are doing via their blogs and go from there. There is a workbox blogroll (http://sunflowerschoolhouse.com/workbox-blogroll/), if you're interested in seeing how it looks in different families (not all secular). Here's (http://fiddler42.blogspot.com/2009/09/mission-organization-homeschool-edition.html) how it looks in mine.

07-25-2010, 09:32 PM
I checked out The Story of Science which led me to Hakims' A History of the US which also has audio books available via audible.com [although not the library :-( ]. I did listen to a sample and it does sound good. My DH [who was dead set against homeschooling at first] actually came home from Borders with Smithsonian Animal, World History a Visual Guide and World in a Box. So I now think we are set with history. I am getting right where I want to be.
I found a couple of apps for our iPod Touch which will also come in handy while we are away from home. I am looking for more but I am actually very excited for this school year!