What we are using

10 January 2010

Third Grade LA is not going well

I sat down yesterday to plan the LA for next week and began to have serious doubts about the direction third grade LA has been going. I think CC writes less than she did at the beginning of the year, and I am pretty sure her handwriting has been taking a downhill slide.

I've been so focused on moving math from being the hated subject to at least a workable subject that I have let many other subjects go. I think it was a great choice. By focusing, I was able to put our time and energy into what I felt was the most important need at the time. However, now I need to look at writing and grammar.

I really thought the SL LA3+4 was going to work for us, but I don't think the books will work. They are so far below her reading level that I'm not happy having her spending time reading these instead of what is on her own list of books to read. She told me this morning what she wants to read after Little Women - Pinocchio, Black Beauty, Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea, Peter Pan, and Treasure Island. I spent a good deal of time today trying to see how SL LA would work without the reading assignments, and I think I can make it work but I'd be losing the integration that I was looking for when I switched to it. Maybe we should continue it as is?

I've been looking at writing programs that integrate writing with informal grammar instruction because I still don't like grammar in isolation. My top three choices right now are Write with the Best, which appeals to me because it uses models based on classical literature, and two more conventional writing programs - Wordsmith Apprentice and Writing Strands.

For an emergency measure, I am going to restart Writing with Ease 3, but that is not going to fix everything we need. I was thinking of getting a really nice notebook for her to start copying poetry and quotes to work on her handwriting. I've also been thinking about doing notebooking like Daisy does to add content area writing. Where can I find really good notebooking pages for early modern history, geography and science?

Can't I just skip writing? My kid reads well and loves math and French. Isn't that enough already?

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