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    #191307 - 05/15/14 11:01 AM skills acceleration
    cammom Offline
    Member

    Registered: 07/11/13
    Posts: 299
    For lack of a better phrase...

    DS7 has taken several standardized tests since beginning kindergarten. I'm finding that his results on these tests are indicating rapid skill development.

    For instance, he took a reading test a year ago that put his reading about 2 years above grade level. He took the same format reading test this year, that placed him four years above grade level.

    We don't have a lot on math except the WJIII achievement that is placing him 8+ years above grade level and in the 99.99 percentile. Caveat: I've heard that the WJIII may be scoring a bit high in math for younger kids, and I'm sure that there are learning gaps.

    Any "been there, done that" parents? What are your experiences with your kids who test so far out of grade level? Especially down the road when they get to 3rd or 4th grade? I keep waiting for DS to slow down a bit, and instead he seems to be getting faster. I'm excited for him, but I'm getting a bit anxious about whether "regular" school can meet his needs in the long term.

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    #191313 - 05/15/14 11:30 AM Re: skills acceleration [Re: cammom]
    mecreature Offline
    Member

    Registered: 03/14/11
    Posts: 358
    Our story is just about the same as yours.
    DS is11 and in 5th grade. He is finishing up his first year at a new school.

    4th grade was was suppose to be the year they were worried about showing improvement. He was subject accelerated 2 years starting in 2nd grade. They ran out of curriculum at the end of 3rd grade. He ended up raising his Math and LA MAP scores at roughly 4 times the normal growth his 4th grade year. He was already way into the 99%. I guess we were cheating by having him do AoPS pre-algebra and Caesar's english 1 and 2 his 4th grade year to keep him moving in a good direction.

    I am not sure it slows down. The public school will swear to you that it will but they were starting to figure it out. I can go on and on about meetings, accommodations, high ability grouping. It never seemed to pan out.


    Edited by mecreature (05/15/14 11:39 AM)

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    #191317 - 05/15/14 11:46 AM Re: skills acceleration [Re: cammom]
    Zen Scanner Offline
    Member

    Registered: 07/13/12
    Posts: 1478
    Loc: NC
    Our local HG program has as part of the core description of HG learners that they typically advance 1.5 to 2 years per each year of regular school.

    Which is why I find "accelerated" being used interchangeably with "grade skipping" a bit frustrating.

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    #191380 - 05/15/14 07:06 PM Re: skills acceleration [Re: cammom]
    cammom Offline
    Member

    Registered: 07/11/13
    Posts: 299
    Zen Scanner- I think that's about right. I keep expecting DS to slow down, but he seems to be speeding up.
    I am grateful for the Singapore math. The word problems are challenging- there is no easy work around for not thinking "mathematically." We are working through the fourth grade now, and I bet a lot of bright high school students who have not been using Singapore math would find these word problems tricky.

    I have been unprepared for the reading acceleration- four years growth in one year of school, and it's not even his strongest subject! Now, he's thirsting for "high level" books and is trying (so far, so good) to get through a Jules Verne novel (at age seven!).

    Zen Scanner- We are not going to grade accelerate. I don't think that a one year acceleration will effectively meet his needs and he is classic "gifted" (the difficult traits that you read about online- he has about 75% of them). In first grade, we're already dealing with one or two kids at school who call him a "freak." It might turn into a bullying problem if he is thrust in with older children.

    On a good note, we have applied for Davidson Young Scholars with qualifying achievement and IQ scores. I am hoping we get a positive response. I would love to take DS to the summit to make friends and have fun.

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    #191383 - 05/15/14 08:04 PM Re: skills acceleration [Re: cammom]
    slammie Offline
    Member

    Registered: 02/17/14
    Posts: 161
    good luck with getting into DYS! I hope good news is heading your way.
    I don't have much to add since we are just starting go down the rapid learning path ourselves but I keep hearing the "don't accelerate too much, you don't want DD at a place where there is nothing left to teach" mantra at school.
    I'm also seeing very rapid trajectory of growth in our DD. But like you, DH and I decided against advocating for a grade skipping even though this is what we originally thought was best for DD, simply because they would have to continue to subject accelerate anyway.

    I have a question re: singapore math. Do you buy the text books for your DS or just the practice and challenge word problems? I purchased the textbook for DD last summer and I found I didn't need it. TIA.

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    #191556 - 05/17/14 08:50 AM Re: skills acceleration [Re: cammom]
    cammom Offline
    Member

    Registered: 07/11/13
    Posts: 299
    slammie- I really detest when schools say that we should slow down acceleration so that teachers have something to teach. It sounds like convenience for the school and not in the interest of the student.

    I bought the Singapore math word problems. DS is working on the fourth grade now- some are quite challenging, some less so. The challenging problems are worthwhile- DS kind of melts down on the hard ones, which tells me that it's pushing his analytical skills. (he's perfectionistic and throws a fit if he can't instantly "solve" a problem, preferably in his head).

    Anyway, I didn't buy text books because DS knows (is on his way to knowing) most elementary school level calculation. I want him to be able to use it in applied word problems.

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    #191559 - 05/17/14 12:33 PM Re: skills acceleration [Re: slammie]
    aeh Offline
    Member

    Registered: 04/26/14
    Posts: 3993
    We have used Singapore Math from EarlyBird Kindergarten all the way up through Primary Math 6B, and are now using Discovering Math. For the first level I used, I bought the textbook, and have not done so since. We use only the workbook. The only place where this was a bit tricky was when they introduced bar diagrams, and I kind of had to infer their use from the first item of the problem set in the workbook. I have referenced the textbooks once or twice at other levels, mainly because someone later gave me some stray textbooks, and since I had them, I figured I might as well check to see if we were following the model. For the secondary level books, we have used the textbook, but not the teacher's guide, workbook, or test bank book. I bought them on approval, and did not find them to be necessary.

    From our experience, grade acceleration does not necessarily amp up the peer social issues. It depends a lot on the child, the receiving classroom(s), and the amount of acceleration (really, the age difference between your child and the others). It is possible to become viewed fondly as the class pet, if the age difference is larger, or if there are particularly caregiving kids in the group. While not exactly the ideal peer social situation, it isn't exactly bad, either.

    Also, at some point, it may be that so little time will be spent in the home classroom that it will become de facto grade acceleration.

    And, BTW, anyone who thinks it is possible to run out of things to teach is giving you a pretty accurate picture of how little they know.
    _________________________
    ...pronounced like the long vowel and first letter of the alphabet...

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    #192940 - 05/31/14 10:22 PM Re: skills acceleration [Re: aeh]
    MegMeg Offline
    Member

    Registered: 03/14/10
    Posts: 615
    Originally Posted By: aeh
    Singapore Math . . . For the first level I used, I bought the textbook, and have not done so since. We use only the workbook.

    Just to add another data point, I was cursing myself for having just ordered textbook + workbook when I read this. And at first it seemed true for us to. But now we've switched to using just the textbook and not the workbook, and that's working for us too. The textbook seems to be largely redundant with the workbook, but with a few worked examples in a kind of show-and-tell style, and then only a few problems for the student to work. I'm finding this quite useful to buzz through a lot of material quickly and see what she gets and what she doesn't. The stuff that she doesn't, it's easy enough to make up a few more problems on the fly for her to do. Plus, the textbook is in color and looks and feels more fun. So this is working for us so far. May change when we get past material that she already partially grasps.

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    #192943 - 06/01/14 01:23 AM Re: skills acceleration [Re: cammom]
    ColinsMum Offline
    Member

    Registered: 09/19/08
    Posts: 1898
    Loc: Scotland
    Yup, btdt. Ours hasn't slowed down, but what has definitely happened is that he's much better at 10 than at 7 at taking his learning from whatever's around rather than needing a teacher to do it all for him, so in that sense it's fine - at least, for us with a really excellent school it has been. This is going to depend hugely on school and on child's personality, though. Do you trust your school?

    Reading I really wouldn't worry about. My immediate reaction is to wonder what it even means for a 7yo to be 4 years ahead in reading. I know there's an argument for that being wrong, but I do still think there's a case for saying that once your kid can read and enjoys reading all future reading skills will take care of themselves, given plenty of material.

    Maths: make sure there is challenge; the nominal grade matters hardly at all, it's all about hard problems.
    _________________________
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    #192946 - 06/01/14 04:18 AM Re: skills acceleration [Re: cammom]
    madeinuk Offline
    Member

    Registered: 03/18/13
    Posts: 1453
    Loc: NJ
    My DD basically taught herself using the SM books for 1st thru 5th grade ones. We bought the textbooks, work books and the 4th/5th challenging questions. I specifically did this because I wanted her to do the drills. The SM drills are not at all onerous. She would sometimes ask questions but it was so infrequent that I cannot recall even one example now.

    There was an adjustment to learning from the AoPS style text and I did work with her intensively for the first couple of weeks after which she seems to have adjusted and I am needed infrequently. Of course, I show interest and talk things through with her every so often because I do have no small amount of concern that she may be whistling along just skimming the surface, so to speak.

    So far my fears have been unfounded and am very impressed with the AoPS discovery based approach and my DD's apparent absorption of the material so far. The only niggle that I have with AoPS is that all 'virtual classroom' sessions are held at hours convenient to West coast folks. If a student keeps up with the recommended reading and prep work, the classroom sessions, though enjoyed, are really just gravy.

    Quote:

    Reading I really wouldn't worry about. My immediate reaction is to wonder what it even means for a 7yo to be 4 years ahead in reading. I know there's an argument for that being wrong, but I do still think there's a case for saying that once your kid can read and enjoys reading all future reading skills will take care of themselves, given plenty of material.

    Maths: make sure there is challenge; the nominal grade matters hardly at all, it's all about hard problems.


    ^^^ I fully concur with the above.

    IMO, once reading proficiency has been acquired a child is only limited by their natural curiosity, time for reading and access to materials that allow interests to be followed.


    Edited by madeinuk (06/01/14 04:26 AM)
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