Special Needs - Success with MFW & Dyslexia, ADHD, More

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Is this a good plan?

Unread post by TriciaMR » Mon Apr 15, 2013 5:06 pm

HomeschoolHarvest wrote:Hi Everyone,

I've decided to start ECC next year with my four children, my first year with MFW. I'm excited and hopeful that it will make things easier as I am able to combine them!

My kids will be in 8th, 6th, 1st and pre-school (3 years old). My 6th grader is going to use the language arts recommendations. He is dyslexic but I'm hoping that the amount of reading aloud (by me) and being able to choose some appropriate readers from the book basket list will help. Anyone use MFW with a dyslexic child and have any specific tips?

I have 2 that are dyslexic. We started with ECC when the oldest was in 3rd grade (one of my dyslexics) and my twins were 4yo (one of them is dyslexic). I found doing double dictation very helpful for my oldest (she talks, I write, and then she copied it). Or, I would just fill in worksheets for her. (Now, as a 7th grader, she is working independently quite a bit. Spelling is still her nemesis, and math is slow for her, but we are progressing.) Also, I got used grade-level Abeka and Pathway readers for her to read aloud to me for 10-15 minutes a day when she was younger (up through 6th grade). My younger dyslexic son reads to me 10 minutes a day, and we use All About Spelling for spelling/reading. I've seen great improvement in their reading from using this program. I have learned, though, not to expect to get everything done in 4 hours. Dyslexics just need more time to get things done. But, I have found using a timer for subjects like math, reading, math drill, English, and handwriting really good - that way they know there is a stopping point, and then you just pick up where you left off the next day. (We also do spelling, math & math drill, and reading year round. That is really important for dyslexics so they don't lose ground.)

Trish - Wife to Phil, Mom to Toni(18), Charlie(14), and Trent(14)
2014-2015 - AHL, CTG
2015-2016 - WHL, RTR
2016-2017 - EXP1850, US1877
2017-2018 - DE, 1850MOD
2018-2019 - College, AHL
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Re: Is this a good plan?

Unread post by HomeschoolHarvest » Mon Apr 15, 2013 5:36 pm

Thanks for the encouragement! Specific things that work for your dyslexic children are very helpful. My ds11 has been working with a tutor for the last two school years and has made great progress. I'd like to try more things on our own next year as they relate to the curriculum because lots of times he feels like he's not learning, but rather just working on skills. kwim? And, you're right, it is so hard and takes a lot longer to do the things he needs to do.

Thanks again and I look forward to chatting!

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Re: Is this a good plan?

Unread post by TriciaMR » Mon Apr 15, 2013 6:21 pm

I've also found that I have to drill and kill with the math facts for my dyslexics. We use xtramath.org and then Mathblaster on my iPad (more fun) for 15 minutes a day. Oh, and we've tried Math Wrap-Ups, too (if your kid is very hands on, those might work well). And, I drill with flashcards. You can look at Little Giant Steps Rapid Recall System (a google search will take you right too it) for another math drill program. It hasn't really helped my younger son, but I know others who swear by it. He can do math, and when he does problems in his math book, he gets most of them right, but he doesn't know them quickly. He can subtract 400-299 faster than 13-8 :) . (But, I think that is because of the Singapore math.) I have found my dyslexics get math concepts and can set up the problems just fine, but make lots of mistakes when doing the math.

Oh, and letting my oldest use a computer here in 7th grade has been great. It has given her much more confidence in her writing, rather than hand-writing everything.

I use a program called WriteStart (again, google is your friend) to type up the verses for copy work, so each line can be right above where they are to write and they can see how to form the letters and words. This has been very helpful for my son. (My dd already has good handwriting, so not a problem, and she can now copy from the top of the page to the lines below). I plan on gradually changing it so he has to copy from the top of the page, but he isn't ready for that yet. Also, I wouldn't do much in dictation with a dyslexic due to spelling. I would make it almost all copy work.

Trish - Wife to Phil, Mom to Toni(18), Charlie(14), and Trent(14)
2014-2015 - AHL, CTG
2015-2016 - WHL, RTR
2016-2017 - EXP1850, US1877
2017-2018 - DE, 1850MOD
2018-2019 - College, AHL
My blog

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Re: Is this a good plan?

Unread post by yvonneh » Tue Apr 16, 2013 12:54 pm

I will be right there with you this year doing ECC and MFW 1st. I have a suspected (though not yet confirmed) dyslexic (my oldest). Good luck with your year!
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: Is this a good plan?

Unread post by HomeschoolHarvest » Tue Apr 16, 2013 5:50 pm

So many great suggestions! Nice to know we will be in the same boat, Yvonne. :-) I'm sure I'll be asking more questions as I go along.


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Location: North Dakota

2014-2015 Roll Call

Unread post by Poohbee » Wed Jul 30, 2014 11:03 am

Hi Everyone!

I have to tell you, I am thrilled to be doing K with Jacob this year. First of all, I just love the MFW K program! But more than that, Jacob is autistic, and I thought we would maybe have to wait another year to start K with him, which would have been fine. But, lately he has just been soaking up everything, even teaching himself to read. He is definitely ready to begin K, but we'll probably be doing it just 3 days a week (he has 2 days each week for therapies), and just taking it slow. So, I am excited to start going through the K program with him, teaching him the character lessons and just having fun together during our learning times.

However, it will be my last time teaching K, as Jacob is my youngest, so it is a bit bittersweet. Also, it's Grace's last year to join us in the learning cycle, as she will start high school after this year, so I'm going to try to cherish every part of this school year.
Last edited by Poohbee on Wed Jul 30, 2014 5:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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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Re: 2014-2015 Roll Call

Unread post by hsm » Wed Jul 30, 2014 12:30 pm

Oh, fun! I will play :-)

We are blessed with three wonderful children. My oldest is 12 and will be starting 7th grade. My middle girl is 9 and will be starting 4th. My youngest (and only boy) is 6 and will be starting 1st grade. We are doing CtG and MFW 1st this year after completing ECC and MFWK this past year.

Our days are busy as two of my children have special needs and we have to incorporate therapy activities in our day as well as out of the house therapies trips a couple of times per week. My children are involved in various activities. We participate in a homeschool group that we love because it only meets once per month with a field trip another day per month. It fits our needs. I am starting a new season in life as I go back to college to begin a new path toward becoming a dental hygienist.But, I have protected our school time so that we are not leaving during school hours.

We are so excited to start our new curriculum this year. We plan to begin on August 18, but may start earlier if I can get organized sooner!

A fun addition to our curriculum is our language addition. We will be learning American Sign Language as a family since three of us are hearing impaired. We are very excited to start this!

And, I want to add that MFW K was an amazing blessing for my son who has various special needs. I didn't think I could possibly teach him to read and he reads wonderfully now. For anyone reading these posts, don't be fooled by the rumored "lightness" of the program. It is sweet, gentle, and effective. Perfect for us. :-) Can't wait to continue with 1st!
K/ECC, CtG/Learning God's Story
dd-12, dd-9, ds-6

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Not sure where to place my child?

Unread post by kw4blessings » Wed May 20, 2015 7:40 am

allgirlsmommy wrote:I am having a hard time deciding what program to use for my daughter. She is 9 years old. She is reading at a much lower grade level than her age would indicate. I finally had her eyes tested and had her tested for learning disabilities. She will start vision therapy this summer. They were thinking there may be dyslexia, but it takes them awhile to make their assessment.

It breaks my heart that she has struggled so much. I was told that some kids just take time to learn to read and to give her more time, but she just wasn't getting it and she still writes numbers backwards at times. Anyway....I LOVE MFW, but am struggling with where to place her. I am thinking about putting her in Adventures. Do you feel she would be OK to start there? Would it be too young for a 10 year old? She also has a 7 year old sister who will be doing 1st grade, a 3 year old sister and 13 and 15 year old sisters. I hesitate to put her in a program with her older sisters because of how much she struggles with reading and writing. Thank you so much in advance for any ideas, or help. :)
Hi! My 8 year old is in vision therapy as well. It has been a great experience so far! We did Adventures during the last school year. It was a great year and lots of fun.

I wonder if it may be a little too simplistic for a 10 year old, even with learning struggles? You may be able to make it work. Sometimes it's good to take a step back with struggling learners and focus on the basics. We did that this school year with my oldest and she has really grown in many areas that she was struggling with. Adventures would give you a chance to have plenty of time for the basics, plus adding some great beginning level US History.

Have you considered ECC? I can't speak too much from experience, because we are just about to start using it in late summer. But, it seems like it is very adaptable for any child whose learning abilities fall within the 2nd-8th grade levels. So, even if your daughter is a full 2-3 years "behind" in reading, she should still be fine. I would imagine you could do as much reading aloud as possible and adapt the reading and writing to where she is. Hopefully, with the vision therapy, she will advance by leaps and bounds during the next school year!! Blessings! :)
Kelly, blessed mama to
sweet girl 10, busy boys 8, 6, 3
Finished K, 1st, Adventures, ECC
2016-17 CTG, K, and All Aboard!

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Re: Not sure where to place my child?

Unread post by DS4home » Wed May 20, 2015 9:30 am

I'm thinking it doesn't really matter what history year you choose, Math and English/Reading will always be at that child's level. In our house I always read everything for Bible, history, and science to the kids, no matter what grade they were in. The only real reading they are required to do is book basket and the book I choose for their reading time. I make sure to choose books that are at each child's level, whatever "grade" they are in isn't as important when picking out reading books.

If your child can listen and narrate (tell back what they remember from listening) then you really can do whichever history level your whole family would be in. When it comes to the notebook pages you can easily adjust the expectations for each child. If your dd was able to narrate after your reading, then use that to put in her notebook. You can write it out knowing it was her thoughts, then let her add a drawing or color her own picture or something. You can also adjust the writing in other parts of the curriculum. When they are suppose to write out the memory verse one day, you can stretch it out over a few days if need be. Just write a phrase a day until the verse is all written out, etc.

As a mom, you will only want to have one core for the family, plus K and 1st for the youngers. If your older girls are in one MFW year, and you are doing 1st with a younger child, you will not have time to do a separate core with another child! Keep the family together as much as possible. Then use your extra time to work with your struggling one with whatever English/reading program you choose for her.

Celebrating our 29th Anniversary <3
Amber(HS Grad, Married), Carmen(HS+Col Grad, Married), Nathan(HS Grad, College), & Bethany(10th).

2019: WHL for the 3rd time!
Completed the MFW cycle: Pre K-yr.5, AHL(pilot), WHL, US Hist.1

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