donutmom wrote:I'm wondering if anyone could tell me how many weeks of the high school curriculum would need to be complete to still count the full credits for each subject? It seems at one time I saw this alluded to on the boards, but can't come across it now.
I know there are generalities using textbooks that if you finish 2/3rd or 3/4ths (depending on where you look) it can count as a credit, but how do I count MFW?? Is there a certain number of the scheduled weeks that could be done and count. If it matters, we are doing the AHL with a 9th grader.
I ask because my son has had some health issues this year, so we've gotten "behind" with all things involved. If it was up to us, we wouldn't worry about it and just have him finish in the summer. BUT, we live in a state with regulations, and we must submit paperwork to the school district by June 30th.
Any help would be very much appreciated. Thank you.
These kinds of questions need lots of input from different perspectives in order for you to find what works for your family. I'll just start but don't claim to be the final answer.
In my opinion, most "homeschool curriculum" is written to be used for the full year. MFW in particular has been carefully tested in hundreds of pilot families to create a body of work at the high school level. Public school curriculum, on the other hand, is often not completed, either because the teacher has mixed in other things during the year, or because the textbook offers lots of options for teachers to choose from, or because the school had too many pep fests and snow days and such -- and I always puzzle with my son's friends about how those students can possibly be prepared for the next level of math, etc. But I digress...
I also think that "stopping early" can leave the wrong impression on our children and potentially future admissions to places like the military or an especially nosy college.
That said, I have had kids in public high schools and I feel the MFW curriculum far exceeds what any of them did, so I think there's room to sub or to leave things out along the way, here and there, and still have complete high school credits. I know you're probably very exhausted, but if you can deliberately choose some things that your son doesn't need, I like that idea better than "stopping early." (Maybe I'm just splitting hairs, my kids have accused me of that in the past LOL.) Some random thoughts on things you might choose to skip:
- The AHL manual mentions that the Iliad is somewhat optional. So skip it if you'd like. High schools near me just read the Odyssey.
- I chose not to include the service hours as part of my son's credit, but instead to list his service projects as extra-curriculars, for several reasons. So as you can see, I felt the Bible credit was complete without that.
- I've heard of some folks skipping bits of the Bible, such as the Daniel study. Some of these folks are very academic sorts, so I wouldn't feel bad about having your son just read Daniel instead, or skip PDL if you like (though my ds got a lot out of PDL).
- Eric Liddell is just read through, without any assignments that I recall. It sort-of ties in at the end with Greece, since he was in the Olympics. If you want your son to read this, you could have your son read it in the summer after the June 30 deadline, since there is no grading involved. In fact, you might check the grading list in the manual, start filling in grades for the things he's finished, and see what's left that could be completed after the deadline?
- We used audiobooks for most of Homer. And I read the Answers Book and Pharaohs chapters aloud to my son. If your son is still in poor health, that might help him?
- I probably shouldn't say this out loud
but often I would just summarize the "Bible lessons" in Notgrass in order to speed things along. These were usually the last chapter of every unit, plus the first complete unit or two in the book, not sure if there was more? I felt my son's reading of the complete Bible and participating in family discussion had shown me his mastery of the points Mr. Notgrass was making for students, so I just did a quick once-over from mom.
- My son has basically been behind every year, due to our family life, and just my son's character. However, he is rarely behind in all 6 credits. AHL is only 3 of his credits, and I usually try to have my son complete his other credits first. In other words, it feels less stressful to me if some of the credits are completed first (although I have to be careful not to pile up the things he likes the least all at the end).
- If you find it impossible to complete the history credit, you could conceivably award him just half a history credit this year. Ancient history is not usually essential.
- One filler credit, if you choose to shorten the ancient history, could be fine arts. One credit in some sort of fine arts is expected at our state university. If you still have the composer biography CDs from earlier MFW years, your son could listen to the bios and example pieces being played, and record/summarize. That might be something your son could do when he didn't have much energy. Or maybe he's into some other sort of arts such as photography or jazz, that he could study while relaxing on the couch, if necessary. I do sometimes give my kids a half credit for something they are already involved in, such as phy ed or drama or maybe your son has learned enough to get a health credit. I just add a bit of reading/research and writing to be sure they are processing what they are learning at a high school level.
- I'd forget any electives or credits beyond 6 for this year. It is very unusual for a high schooler to earn more than 6 per year unless they are heavily involved in band.
- If you are using MFW lesson plans for math, you are in a way doing less than 100% of the books, because some problems are skipped (at least they were in the MFW Geometry lesson plans we used). Make sure you know your math problem options, because math is a huge subject at this age, and an important subject in my opinion, so it's better to have good advice on what to skip or whether the final chapters are not essential, rather than to just stop early and leave the student unprepared for the next level. I think MFW could help you through that if you use their program, and I have even emailed authors of math texts and received helpful replies. I will say that if your son is in geometry, that has been the least crucial of the math courses my son has done. He's in pre-calculus now and the algebra foundation has been very necessary, since each level just goes deeper and deeper.
Don't forget that you can call the office, too. Bret is the high school consultant, and he's amazing. Here's a post from someone who called the office about a similar issue:
http://board.mfwbooks.com/viewtopic.php ... 800#p74800
Well, those are some thoughts to start with!