7-plus yrs old - Using MFW1 for grade 2+ language arts

Learning God's Story
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Re: 1st Grade or Adventures

Unread post by mamag3 »

cbollin - Actually your suggestion to call MFW was a good one, and I think that is a good place for any of us with questions to start. And they did take the time to listen to my thoughts & concerns, but in the end they did say that they could see pros/cons to going either route. So although they were kind and took time to listen, they were just as indecisive as I was....LOL :)

gratitude - "Do you want a Bible time-line on the wall and Bible note-book before US History? He would continue at 2nd grade level math. History could wait, it does in the schools. So do you want, do you think you need, to spend more time on phonics and reading? If you do I don't think you will regret the time now to lay a solid phonics foundation." This was a helpful reminder. They do wait for history in schools and we haven't really done a timeline before so it may be nice to do now....that's another aspect I haven't thought about before.

I did take a look at the bible reader and I think he would struggle with it, especially towards the end of it....that's defnitely something to consider. I wasn't sure how much of it they read. Its so hard to know what is expected without a good look at the TM.

Thanks ladies for all your input, I really am grateful!
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Joined: Sun Apr 01, 2012 4:51 pm

Re: 1st Grade or Adventures

Unread post by blessingtree »

My son is right where yours is, we just finished a phonics program that uses explode the code, and we are about to do books 1-3 this summer before beginning MFW1.Which will have us right where we need to be for 1st. The first few weeks are phonics review, and you can camp out there a while if you need to. I have been pouring over the TM to gauge where we are now and where we will be in August. If your son can't read the Bible reader now or would struggle, then I would choose 1st over ADV! My son can read it, but he isn't there yet, maybe in phonics, but not in the other stuff. So I followed my gut! You know your child best. Anyway, since we've both used explode the code, I wanted to chime in. Oh, and you can always add in and keep doing explode the code if you've had success with it. I use ETC and Rod and Staff, which are all very similar to MFW phonics in K & 1st. I have had my son do both this year and he has done very well with it, we have gone at a slower pace, but I've been very pleased with his progress. I'm praying for your decision, as I was making the same one a month ago!
Married to best friend 11 years and counting!
Mommy to two precious little boys: Baker (6) & Bear (4)
MFW 1st grade in fall 2012
Rod and Staff pre-K/K Fall 2012
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Need Advice....

Unread post by Yodergoat »

NCOX1999 wrote:My 8 year old daughter is having a very hard time learning to read. My other two daughters (ages 12 & 7) are very strong readers and I think that she is embarrassed that she can't read yet. I am worried that my daughter will start to fall behind due to the reading issue. If anyone has any suggestions that could help us I'd love to hear them!

I don't have any advice for you... my daughter has struggled with reading as well.

But the one thing I wanted to do is think about what other info could help others in making suggestions for you, since this seems to be your first posting here. There are some wise and helpful folks on this forum, but they may need more information. I thought I'd ask some questions now so maybe they will see your response and can make suggestions for you.

Did she do any MFW programs such as K and First? If not, what reading instruction has she had so far?

What level is she at with her reading... can she not read at all? Or is she just slow and hesitant, but able to sound out words eventually? Unable to remember letter sounds and combinations? Or is she just struggling and embarrassed when compared to the stronger readers in the family?

Just some things that may help the other ladies here if you can share more info.

And welcome to the forum!
I'm Shawna...
... a forgiven child of God since 1994 (age 16)
... happily wed to William since 1996
... mother of our long-awaited Gail (3/15/2006)
... missing 6 little ones (4 miscarriages, 2 ectopics)
... starting Rome to the Reformation this fall!
Julie in MN
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Re: Need Advice....

Unread post by Julie in MN »

I would have the same questions Shawna wondered about.

Basically, she needs to keep language arts and math at whatever level she's at, but she can move forward with the family in other areas. If she hasn't done MFW K or 1st, you might consider those for her language arts as she continues to work on reading.

If she has already used MFW K & 1st, then I'd talk to the office about how to continue working with them. I know one of the Hazell kids had to do those early years of language arts for quite a while, and then later he turned out to be their most advanced student, so take heart!

Julie, married 29 yrs, finding our way without Shane
Reid (21) college student; used MFW 3rd-12th grades (2004-2014)
Alexandra (29) mother; hs from 10th grade (2002)
Travis (32) engineer; never hs
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Re: Need Advice....

Unread post by MelissaB »

Last week, I had lunch with one of those heroic homeschool moms who started homeschooling in the 80's, back when it wasn't cool and barely legal. She homeschooled all 4 of her children, 3 sons and a daughter, now all grown and in their late 20's/30's. One is a teacher at a prestigious university in Ireland. One is an engineer. One is getting his second doctorate (seriously). The other is a stay-at-home Mom, homeschooling her own children.

The reason I share that is because she said that her children were not strong readers until 3rd grade. One son didn't read until the end of 3rd grade. By 5th grade, he was reading Moby Dick (the original - not an abridged version) and wrote a lengthy book report on it. How did he turn out? He's an engineer who owns his own firm near Dallas, Texas.

Reading is a lot like potty training. We moms all obsess over how quickly they get it. But, in the final result, we all use the toilet... and most of us wash our hands. :)

And we all read. Some better than others, but we all get the job done.

I'm not sure that it matters when they learn to read. It just matters that they do. :-)
Melissa B. (Arkansas)
Girls ages 16 & 13
Completed K, 1st, and Investigate {ECC; CTG; RTR; Expl.-1850; and 1850-Mod. Times}
"That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children,.." Titus 2:4
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Re: Need Advice....

Unread post by yvonneh »

It is possible your child may have dyslexia. It is fairly common, but you have to get it medically diagnosed. There is an on-line site called Lexercise where you can have them take a free evaluation to see if they have some issues. My dd was tested through the public schools and didn't qualify for services. Not surprising, though, since one of the hallmarks of dyslexia is that they are struggling readers but have overall average to above-average intelligence. I know it can be very frustrating for both the child and the parent. It took me 3 years to figure out the problem and we still haven't found the right treatment for it. Good luck to you both in your quest for an answer.
wife to Pete since 2002
born again believer since 2005
mom to 3 dd:
--elizabeth, 9
--abigail, 6
--faith, 3
ECC 2013-2014
Learning God's Story (1st) 2013-2014
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Re: Need Advice....

Unread post by gratitude »

I guess I have some of the same questions as the others:
When does your dd turn 9?
What phonics has she done? Reading program?
What can she read?

Every mind works differently. If a child talks early they will actually walk slightly later. The mind works and learns and focuses on one thing in childhood and then switches. Most kids walk first and then learn to talk. Some, like mine, talked first and walked a little later.

Her mind is probably taking in other information that she is working on and reading is something she isn't as focused on.

My first son taught himself to read. My second son was slower in reading fully coming together and figured out other things on his own. Every mind, child, personality is different. Just as no two snow flakes are alike there are not two children alike. God created each of them with different personalities that have different areas that will draw their attention and focuses differently.

Your dd will read. For my second son, who reading came a little slower for, I found Rod and Staff phonics and reading program to work well with MFW1, and we just took longer to go through both. Then one day...like it always does...it all came together and it was suddenly easy for him. My take on it is that his mind was much too busy elsewhere to give reading much of his attention. He was my latest walker too...and he is extremely bright...but he was too busy taking everything in to even think about walking. His mind is always working on 'other things'. When reading came along he was busy figuring other things out and it took me months to attract his attention to the idea of reading the books he liked to look at. Just stay with it..it will come together.
Wendy B.
Posts: 127
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Reading/Vocabulary Programs?

Unread post by Wendy B. »

rodenburgal wrote:It is our first year of homeschooling and I'm learning that my almost done with third grade dd really struggles with reading/spelling and vocabulary. She doesn't seem to be able to sound out words she doesn't know, she just guesses or makes up a word if she doesn't know a word and she spells words she doesn't know with random letters. Can anyone recommend something to help? She excels in Math and every other subject but doesn't enjoy reading and I can see why if you struggle with it.

I was planning on doing ECC with her in the fall as I"m currently doing MFW K with my son and we LOVE LOVE LOVE it. A friend told me to just have her read, read, read, and it will come, but she despises reading. Any advice or thoughts are greatly appreciated!

I should also confess we had tried AAR and AAS at the start of the year and she doesn't like the magnets etc. I've wondered about an auditory processing issue. When she was between ages 1 and 5 she had 4 sets of ear tubes and I'm wondering if that has caused an issue as she doesn't hear the sounds correctly. Those were mommys big career days where she spent her days at daycare. I'm also not sure she was ever really taught phonics in public school here.

So many things to figure out, I'm just glad I'm now able to homeschool my kids as not sure public school would have noticed she struggles.

bartonreading.com has a student screening. Although not a thorough dyslexia testing process, there is also a lot of information on dyslexia that you can preview and see if it sounds like your child.

If she was learning phonics with AAR/AAS, then I would work around the tiles. Although saying she "doesn't like the magnets" might be her way of telling you that AAR/AAS was not a good fit. My dyslexic children did not make progress with AAR/AAS and experienced a lot of frustration with that program.

If she just needs to go through a phonics program, MFW 1 might be a good option. No tiles, just phonics. If there are no other issues ( tracking, auditory processing, dyslexia, etc. ) working through MFW 1 ( phonics only) would be an easy, quick way to get the phonics information that she needs to become a fluent reader.

Wendy B.
Graduated ds '08 & dd '09
Homeschooling ds 11 & dd 8 using RtR
completed: MFW 1, ADV, ECC & CtG.
Posts: 5
Joined: Fri Mar 28, 2014 4:51 pm

Re: Reading/Vocabulary Programs?

Unread post by rodenburgal »

Thank you so much. She comprehends and narrates back like a superstar and she reads well at a 2nd/3rd grade level, but when she comes to words she doesn't know, she guesses or substitutes a word. I do know that b and p sound same to her as does w and r. I was never an avid reader but I could read very well, I just preferred to play outside or do math. So, I might just try straight forward phonics from mfw1 and see how that goes. I really appreciate the advice.
Amy - NoVa
DD 9 Soon to be ECC
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Re: Reading/Vocabulary Programs?

Unread post by TriciaMR »

Amy, it sounds like she has just memorized words. And usually that works until 3rd or 4th grade, then the words step up a notch and they don't have any strategy for a new word.

MFW 1st might be a good starting point. You'll have info from AAR and AAS to teach her strategies for breaking words down into syllables to sound them out. However, you may have to model this a whole lot before she "gets" it. This was one of the things my dd did a lot. (One of my sons, too.) I had to stop their reading and say, "No, that's not right. Let's sound this out together." Or "That sentence didn't make any sense (repeat what they said back). Let's go back and sound out this word." Sometimes I would just cover sections of the word in the book. Other times I would write it on a small whiteboard, breaking it up into syllables and sounding out each syllable. After a while they would either stop and ask me how to say a word (and I'd break it down syllable by syllable), or they finally started doing it themselves. Decoding is hard work for some kids.
Trish - Wife to Phil, Mom to Toni(18), Charlie(14), and Trent(14)
2014-2015 - AHL, CTG
2015-2016 - WHL, RTR
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Re: Reading/Vocabulary Programs?

Unread post by rodenburgal »

Yes, exactly it, she has memorized words! So, that is why she is struggling to move past the second grade readers. It is a decoding issue and I almost even looked at the 2nd grade spelling program suggested by mfw. The mfw 1 would workout great as my ds will be ready for that this fall. I liked AAS and AAR but my dd is a "tell me what to do and I'll get it done" mentality. Whereas my ds just enjoys the journey.

I'm at least grateful to have figured out a few things over this first year of homeschooling. I never thought how great this journey/adventure could be! So thrilled to have found MFW as we tried way more curriculums in the start than I would ever want to admit here.
Amy - NoVa
DD 9 Soon to be ECC
Wendy B.
Posts: 127
Joined: Tue Apr 07, 2009 6:27 pm

Re: Reading/Vocabulary Programs?

Unread post by Wendy B. »

Has she ever had her hearing tested? Due to the history of ear tubes and muffled sounds, an evaluation by an audiologist might be a good place to start. Your pediatrician will be able to make this referral.

If you have her work through MFW 1 phonics, you will be able to assess her phonic skills. If she doesn't translate this knowledge into being able to read unfamiliar words, there might be more going on then lack of phonics knowledge. There is information on these boards about using MFW 1 as a spelling program which might be helpful to you as well.

A call to the MFW office might help with the Adv. vs. ECC for a 9 yo who needs to work on reading decision.
Wendy B.
Graduated ds '08 & dd '09
Homeschooling ds 11 & dd 8 using RtR
completed: MFW 1, ADV, ECC & CtG.
Posts: 392
Joined: Sat Feb 24, 2007 10:38 pm
Location: North Dakota

New to homeschool and feeling overwhelmed

Unread post by Poohbee »

mommalane wrote:We have decided to homeschool our girls ages 11 and 6 (turning 7 this week). They have been in public school and just finished 5th and 1st grade. I'm not sure how to use the curriculum for both girls. The Family Learning Cycle is appealing but my youngest fell behind in first grade and I don't feel that she is really up at a 2nd grade level. My 6th grader is on track. Should I start with ECC and add supplements for my 6yr old? Any advice is appreciated!
Hello! Welcome to homeschooling and to My Father's World!

Yes, ECC is a great place to start! It is a year of learning about the countries and cultures of the world and praying for the different people groups around the world, among other things. The music, art, and science are tied to the countries/continents you are learning about. Your 6th grader will love it and learn so much, and your 1st/2nd grader can easily join in! When we did ECC, my oldest was a 4th grader and my middle child was a preschooler. Even though my 2nd dd was only in preschool, she joined us for art, music, and even tried to play the Geography Game with her older sister and me. A younger child just joins in when able and works at her own abilities. I love being able to teach my children together for many of the subjects! We have some wonderful times of family learning, and it means less planning for me. :-)

You will teach geography, science, music, art, and Bible to your children together, but each child does math and language arts at his or her own level. For your rising 2nd grader, you could start by giving her the placement test for Singapore Math (available on the MFW website) to see where she falls. I ended up starting both of my girls in 1A as 2nd graders. In fact, you will want to give both kids a placement test in order to see where they should start with Singapore math.

For the language arts, you will find that Language Lessons for Today: Grade 2 and Spelling By Sound and Structure (the language arts recommendations for 2nd grade) will be a gentle introduction to homeschooling for your child.

If you look at samples of those and feel that they are too difficult, and if your daughter doesn't place in Singapore 1A, you could look at the 1st grade curriculum (Learning God's Story) and see if it would better meet your needs. Since your daughter will join your older child in ECC, you would only need to do the reading lessons and math in 1st grade, but you could do any of the other activities that appeal to your children from that, as well.

Of course, keep asking questions here, and consider calling the MFW office. They would be glad to help you figure out what you will need for each child.
mommalane wrote:Thank you so much for your advice! I'm looking forward to this new adventure :)
happily married to Vince (19 yrs)
blessed by MFW since 2006
have used every year K-1850MOD
2018-2019: Adventures with 9yo boy
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