Jan 19 2007

Katie’s Fall Report Card

Tag:Tag , , , Cyn @ 22:21

We got Katie’s report card in, and she did in fact get all As!

She’s well in to the next semes­ter now. Because every­body else was reg­is­tered for this year last spring, the advanced physics course was full and she’s in the “nor­mal” physics course. She is crazy bored. I mean, this is seri­ously the first time I’ve won­dered if she’ll get in trou­ble because she’s so bored! Her teacher has never taught before this semes­ter, and isn’t doing a good job of man­ag­ing the class to start with, so respond­ing to the needs of faster stu­dents seems to be absolutely out of the ques­tion. So far they’re just review­ing the sim­plest alge­bra needed to even begin talk­ing about physics!

It’s things like the physics class that make me want to snatch her right back home.

On the other hand, her art and world his­tory classes are won­der­ful, and they’re beyond what I could do for her. She’s get­ting a bet­ter ground­ing than I could ever give her in geom­e­try, as well—because, frankly, I detested that class and got an A in it by the grace of a dirty old man called “Coach.” (And he and teach­ers like him were among the rea­sons I wanted to home­school! Not that any­body ever had to do any­thing with that par­tic­u­lar one but lean over his desk the right way, thankfully.)

So she has Very Bad Things to say about physics each day, but is oth­er­wise happy. I expect that her grades will be every bit as good this semester.


Jan 02 2007

Katie, Me and Schools

Tag:Tag , , , , , Cyn @ 15:36

Well, we’re wait­ing for Katie’s final grades for fall semes­ter while enjoy­ing win­ter break for both of us. We had Sam home for the first half of our breaks with us, but unfor­tu­nately work­ing for a school isn’t quite as lux­u­ri­ous as being a student.

Katie has had mostly As in her progress reports across the term, so I expect that should be what we see on her report card. We’re work­ing on an alge­bra refresher/wrap-up here at home, as she’ll be going into geom­e­try at school when she goes back next week. I don’t hon­estly recall using a great deal of alge­bra in geom­e­try, do you? Of course, I absolutely loathed geom­e­try and never “got it” to any real extent. This doesn’t bode well for home­work help this semester.

She has truly loved her art class. While she has had more access to art sup­plies at home than I ever had in school or out­side it, and I’ve taken her to a fair num­ber of muse­ums and tried to give her some ground­ing in art his­tory, I’m no artist. She’s learned more in that one art class than I could have ever taught her, and she’s hun­gry for more. So hun­gry! I should have given her access to art classes ear­lier, obvi­ously — but hind­sight is 20/20. She wants to take sum­mer school classes this year, and I’m even more in favor of it if it means she can con­tinue her pur­suit of art.

I’ve already got­ten my grades. The fan­tas­tic sup­port I’ve got­ten from Sam and Katie made it pos­si­ble for me to get As in both of my courses for the first half of fall semes­ter. The sec­ond half of fall semes­ter (Devry does things oddly) starts on 8 Jan­u­ary. I’m tak­ing all my courses online again, as that works bet­ter for the fam­ily and my ridicu­lous body.

Oh, I nearly for­got! We got the results back from Katie’s first PSAT. She didn’t do so great in the math, which isn’t sur­pris­ing, not hav­ing had any geom­e­try yet. She didn’t do too badly on it either—84th per­centile, some­thing like that, as I recall. She ran out of time on that sec­tion. She was in the mid to upper 90s on every­thing else. We were a bit con­cerned, because the coun­selor at the high school couldn’t be arsed to get Katie’s accom­mo­da­tions in place in time for the test, but obvi­ously it turned out quite well any­way. The accom­mo­da­tions will be in place and she will have passed geom­e­try before she takes it “for real” next fall, when it counts as the National Merit Schol­ar­ship Qual­i­fy­ing Test.

Well, back to “stor­ing up” sleep and tak­ing pic­tures of every­thing, most espe­cially spoiled lit­tle Kiyoshi the solar-powered cat. I miss spend­ing this much time with Katie on a daily basis. It was much nicer, but she does love her school. She is obvi­ously ener­gized by the aca­d­e­mic dis­course, even by dis­agree­ing with an annoy­ing teacher. She was ready to try out her wings, and we had a good school nearby where she could do so. I’m glad we could go back to home­school­ing if we chose to or needed to do so, but I’m glad the fledgling’s flight is going so well, too.


Nov 12 2006

Grades for the girl

Tag:Tag , , Cyn @ 12:04

I haven’t men­tioned how Katie is doing in a while. While there have been some adjust­ment issues switch­ing over to “school” from home­school­ing, she’s got all As. The “life by the bell” thing has been a nui­sance, and she and one of her teach­ers just do not com­mu­ni­cate on the same wave­length, but she’s deal­ing with it. She adores her art class, some­thing I’m def­i­nitely not equipped to teach at all.

Two of her three aca­d­e­mic classes are advanced, and the third would be but was already over­crowded when we reg­is­tered her for classes. So much for hav­ing trou­ble going into high school as a homeschooler.

The sched­ule isn’t easy on her body or the fam­ily, but again, she’s deal­ing. She does have increased fibromyal­gia symp­toms as a result, and has had to add a daily nap to her sched­ule after school.

One of the most dif­fi­cult issues is hav­ing cer­tain lines of dis­cus­sion “off lim­its.” That’s just too weird, after years of being encour­aged to fol­low her inter­ests and inquiries wher­ever they lead. While she’s attend­ing a rel­a­tively lib­eral school, the fact that it is a school means that there are con­straints on sub­ject matter.

Her lit­er­a­ture teacher referred to chastity belts as a medieval urban leg­end ear­lier in the year, and when she started explain­ing just how very wrong he was, he slammed the dis­cus­sion to a close. If the man is going to be so sloppy with his facts, he shouldn’t be sur­prised when he encoun­ters disagreement!

Sam and I met some­one yes­ter­day who said, “Advanced classes are how we seg­re­gate these days.” I pointed out that they cer­tainly aren’t new, as my own class of 1984 was tracked into advanced, reg­u­lar, and reme­dial (although the last two weren’t called that, pre­cisely) tracks, too. I found it an inter­est­ing state­ment, but we were in the mid­dle of Charis Books and dis­cussing many things, and didn’t get to pur­sue that one as far as I’d hoped. What do you think of it?