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    #122797 - 02/11/12 03:28 PM Skipping a grade without skipping content
    chuckandchel Offline
    Junior Member

    Registered: 02/11/12
    Posts: 6
    My 4th grader Cat attends a private school that hasn't been a perfect fit academically, but has been the best option up 'til now. She makes straight A's in the advanced group and is reasonably happy. The Math and Language Arts are below her abilities, but she does very well socially, and its cool to be smart there.
    BUT we're out of money and have to leave the school next year. We've been researching options, and Cat has come up with a plan of her own. She wants to homeschool next year, using the same texbooks as the state and covering the full coursework for 5th and 6th grade in 1 year, then transfer into the 7th grade, which offers Honors English and Math classes.
    I think this would work very well for her, putting her right where she belongs academically.
    Has anyone tried this kind of acceleration without actually skipping anything? Did it work, or did you run into a wall of opposition?
    I'm afraid we're going to end up with a kid forced to repeat sixth grade with the exact same textbooks.

    #122913 - 02/13/12 09:21 AM Re: Skipping a grade without skipping content [Re: chuckandchel]
    sunday_driver Offline
    Junior Member

    Registered: 01/23/12
    Posts: 47
    Hi there, you might have better luck with this in the Elementary school area, somehow this ended up in the preschool area. My kids are under 3 so my comments are general!

    I do like your plan at the high level. Is there anything you could do to meet with the school to ensure she doesn't end up repeating? Perhaps there are some subject tests or similar she could complete for them to see she does know the material?

    #122914 - 02/13/12 09:23 AM Re: Skipping a grade without skipping content [Re: chuckandchel]
    GHS Offline

    Registered: 09/11/11
    Posts: 116
    I think it sounds like a great idea... One question though: have you tried going to the school and asking for financial aid? Sometimes they are more accommodating to children like yours because they want the scores from the child included in their averages. Maybe a sort of academic/need based scholarship combo. On average private schools tend have about 30% of students on some sort of financial aid and some kids can get full rides (this can vary widely by school though but I keep seeing about 30% over and over).

    If you have decided homeschool would be a better option anyway:
    Remember she will move faster through the material AND that you have two summers to use if you and your daughter choose to use them. Kids often skip and its a history class/social studies that just get skipped all together for the year. No problems. Honestly she will see it again, particularly in a public school (they continue to revisit topics that are important). Also, most of the material that is important from those classes could be taught in a few focussed months... what you do miss is the interesting conversations, projects, "public" speaking, research papers ect. that do build upon each other to prepare you for future classes. She could be fine skipping these if she is already strong in those areas, particularly writing.

    #122984 - 02/14/12 05:22 AM Re: Skipping a grade without skipping content [Re: chuckandchel]
    epoh Offline

    Registered: 10/31/11
    Posts: 954
    Loc: N. Texas
    I believe what she's wanting to do is called 'compacting' and it's not unheard of. Honestly, I wish it was an option in the public schools for gifted kids, instead of spending pull-out time doing projects.

    #122986 - 02/14/12 05:47 AM Re: Skipping a grade without skipping content [Re: chuckandchel]
    Peter Offline

    Registered: 12/16/10
    Posts: 249

    How old is Cat? And has she been evaluated with WISC, etc?

    I agree with her doing home schooling for a year (5th and 6th grade) since she is enthusaistic and advocating you for it.

    A lot depends on the public middle school she is going to go. If they have advance classes, pre AP, etc..., even she finished 5th and 6th grade, I would just enroll her in 6th grade (but do 7th or above grade work).

    If she keeps doing it, she may be able to do dual credit or AP courses in high school and get up to 2 years of college credit during High school. And her SAT score will be higher than she might have if she takes a year earlier.

    If she took the test and she is identified as HG (Highly Gifted), all bets are off. IMHO, grade skipping is necessary (most of the time) in early elementary because most public schools do not offer differentiation. But middle and high school usually offer some sort of differentiation. Visit those schools and find out.

    This comes from a guy who is moving 60 miles down south (which means commuting 70 minutes each way for me) for a better school district :-)

    #122988 - 02/14/12 05:58 AM Re: Skipping a grade without skipping content [Re: chuckandchel]
    lmp Offline

    Registered: 04/02/10
    Posts: 90

    Edited by lmp (03/28/12 09:36 AM)

    #123003 - 02/14/12 08:14 AM Re: Skipping a grade without skipping content [Re: chuckandchel]
    chuckandchel Offline
    Junior Member

    Registered: 02/11/12
    Posts: 6
    Thanks for all the input. It looks like I should present the plan to the school board before we do anything.

    I believe my child would do just as well socially one year up as she does now. She has as many older friends as age-level friends. Her BEST friends ages range from the same as hers to one-and-a-half years older, and she has close friendships with gifted, average, and remedial students. She relates well to them over common interests in art, gymnastics, dance, and music. We've always taught her that she's so much more as a person than just smart, and that while intelligence can lead to common interests, it has very little to do with a persons value as a friend. (Winnie the Pooh, Joey from the show "Friends",and CeCe from "Shake it Up" are all a little slow but make great friends.)

    We are planning on putting her in the public school system. It has honors classes in English, Math, and Spanish, but they're not advanced enough. The Honors English class uses the same text as the regular class, but they read additional novels and have more writing assignments. The Math class gets you through Algebra 1 by the end of eighth.

    The other kids who've left her private school transferred easily from the REGULAR slade classes into the public schools Honors classes with no problems and a decrease in the ammount of work. My kid is in the Advanced classes at the private school, and she could handle more challenging work. She has already been shown to have a knack for Algebra.

    The plan would be for her to test into 7th grade Honors. I'd rather her be in 6th grade honors than 7th grade regular classes because the general attitude of students and teachers alike is so much more positive in Honors classes.

    The public high school is a different story. It has enough AP classes to keep her busy as well as IB and STEM magnet programs. So I can't imagine the skipping issue would ever come up again if we bumped her up once now.

    For those who asked about her testing:
    She scores in the 97th to 99th percentile consistently in the various categories of academic abilities tests with a discrepency in Listening Skills. She scored in the 99th percentile when tested by an independent professional a couple of years ago, but only in the 46th percentile in that category on the school tests last year. I believe the discrepency was due to the ridiculously slow pace the teacher was going, repeating directions making sure everyone understood. Her mind kept wandering.

    She has not had an official IQ test since her school didn't think much of them anyways, but I'm reasonably sure she's in the moderately gifted range (130-145). I'm comparing her to myself at her age - my IQ was tested at 135 - and she's smarter than I was, but not profoundly gifted.

    #123006 - 02/14/12 08:26 AM Re: Skipping a grade without skipping content [Re: chuckandchel]
    Beckee Offline

    Registered: 07/19/11
    Posts: 332
    Loc: Hawaii
    I wonder if you could get your daughter to present the plan to the School Board. See if she's up for it!

    I would also research the results of Renzulli's Compacting Curriculum Study, and include the results in my presentation if I were you.

    Edited by Beckee (02/14/12 08:28 AM)

    #123019 - 02/14/12 09:16 AM Re: Skipping a grade without skipping content [Re: chuckandchel]
    lmp Offline

    Registered: 04/02/10
    Posts: 90

    Edited by lmp (03/28/12 08:46 AM)

    #123117 - 02/15/12 02:35 PM Re: Skipping a grade without skipping content [Re: chuckandchel]
    La Texican Offline

    Registered: 07/10/10
    Posts: 1777
    Loc: South Texas
    It seems like you would use the Iowa Acceleration scale book and advocate for a grade skip and/or subject acceleration the same way that you would as if she hadn't done the work. I'm sure that every school and every state handles this differently. Another thing people seem to do is use the private schools to skip a grade when the public schools say no. I don't know if it would do you any good to homeschool for one year, compacting the two grades, then plan to temporarily re-enroll in the private school the year after to cement the new grade. What about the K-12 online? That's official public school in most states. Are they flexible? I mean, can you compact using the official K-12 virtual school so the new grade is cemented by the public school?
    Youth lives by personality, age lives by calculation. -- Aristotle on a calendar


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