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    #246578 - 01/09/20 03:39 PM Need suggestions on math acceleration
    Confusedmommy Offline
    Junior Member

    Registered: 02/26/18
    Posts: 13
    Hi,
    My DD is in 6th grade. She was given TOMAG by her school 2 years ago and she scored 148, which aeh confirmed for me at that time was in the 99.9 percentile. However, I found out recently that she was not selected for math acceleration, where 6th graders go to 7th grade math, purely based on her 5th grade math teacher’s recommendation. I am really disappointed that her TOMAG score, her similarly high State Test scores and her unit test scores did not factor into the decision at all. When I called the school district, they said that since school has been in session since Sep, they cannot make any changes mid year. What are my options here and how can I ensure that this doesn’t happen again next year?
    Any advice is much appreciated. Thank you.

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    #246579 - 01/09/20 04:16 PM Re: Need suggestions on math acceleration [Re: Confusedmommy]
    Portia Offline
    Member

    Registered: 03/17/13
    Posts: 1783
    If you cannot work within the school, then you can supplement at home with math such as participation in a math circle, math related videos, math competition supplements, etc. Is she happy at school?

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    #246580 - 01/09/20 06:21 PM Re: Need suggestions on math acceleration [Re: Confusedmommy]
    Confusedmommy Offline
    Junior Member

    Registered: 02/26/18
    Posts: 13
    Thanks Portia. She is a very happy kid but completely frustrated with the slow pace of math instruction at school. We do not supplement outside of school as she has developed a hatred for math and homework and I do not want to push her.

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    #246581 - 01/09/20 08:03 PM Re: Need suggestions on math acceleration [Re: Confusedmommy]
    Portia Offline
    Member

    Registered: 03/17/13
    Posts: 1783
    Don't do "math". Have her work on origami or do some art of repeating patterns, etc. LOADS of math in there without realizing one is doing math AND it will not impact schoolwork.

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    #246583 - 01/10/20 06:10 AM Re: Need suggestions on math acceleration [Re: Portia]
    Kai Offline
    Member

    Registered: 05/17/09
    Posts: 592
    Originally Posted By: Portia
    Don't do "math". Have her work on origami or do some art of repeating patterns, etc. LOADS of math in there without realizing one is doing math AND it will not impact schoolwork.


    Also doing puzzles, encouraging curiosity and analytical thinking, and cultivating observation skills will help her develop the habits of mind that are essential not only for success in higher math but also in science.

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    #246584 - 01/10/20 06:44 AM Re: Need suggestions on math acceleration [Re: Confusedmommy]
    Confusedmommy Offline
    Junior Member

    Registered: 02/26/18
    Posts: 13
    Thanks Portia and Kai. She does origami, puzzles, and similar activities for fun and is really good with visual thinking. She is a very intuitive math learner and I’m constantly amazed by how much she has figured out without formal higher level instructions. That said, my greatest worry is that she is checking out at school. How can I convince the school that she is ready for more without coming across as just another pushy parent? Any suggestions? Thanks.

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    #246585 - 01/10/20 09:22 AM Re: Need suggestions on math acceleration [Re: Confusedmommy]
    tigerhog Offline
    Junior Member

    Registered: 07/10/18
    Posts: 22
    A pushy parent is not a bad thing to be if you are armed with facts and evidences. If I were you AND really want to have my child in the 7th grade math, I would contact the district and negotiate further.

    It makes no sense to me that they refuse you because they “cannot make change mid year”. Kids do transfer in and out of school anytime in the year, all the time!

    However, moving your child in the midst of 6th grade to 7th is considered more a promotion, instead of acceleration (in my opinion anyway). The district could argue that your child would have missed a year of instruction time with the move. You have to make a strong case by demonstrating that your child has already master enough materials to fit into the middle of 7th grade.

    But then, since it is a promotion instead of acceleration, you may find yourself back in the same position very quickly, as soon as your child decided the pace of 7th grade math too slow. So perhaps it is more beneficial to spend the time to develop an enrichment plan instead of arguing with the district every year?

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    #246586 - 01/10/20 10:18 AM Re: Need suggestions on math acceleration [Re: Confusedmommy]
    Kai Offline
    Member

    Registered: 05/17/09
    Posts: 592
    Originally Posted By: Confusedmommy
    How can I convince the school that she is ready for more without coming across as just another pushy parent? Any suggestions? Thanks.


    Perhaps if you had her complete an above level class at another school and presented them with the evidence, they would be more responsive? This is essentially what we did when my son entered 9th grade at the public high school after homeschooling, and they actually placed him properly--honors precalculus, which is considered two years ahead of average in our district. I expect would have balked at a three year acceleration since he would have "run out" of math courses to do at the school.

    Could you homeschool her just for math? In some states it is possible to enroll part time in public school. We are doing for some subjects (not math), and it's working well.

    I also wanted to mention that at my son's school, gifted students get no special consideration unless the parent pushes. They won't even admit that gifted students are eligible for certain things (like placement in AP classes early or without prerequisites). We got that information from other parents.


    Edited by Kai (01/10/20 10:21 AM)

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    #246587 - 01/10/20 02:43 PM Re: Need suggestions on math acceleration [Re: Confusedmommy]
    Confusedmommy Offline
    Junior Member

    Registered: 02/26/18
    Posts: 13
    Thanks Tigerhog and Kai. While homeschooling is not an option for us, would you be able to recommend math tests that can show us what grade level she is performing at? Are there tests such as TOMAG that we should pursue outside of school that would show her potential? Thanks again. I am truly lost and happy to have your help.

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    #246588 - 01/10/20 02:45 PM Re: Need suggestions on math acceleration [Re: Confusedmommy]
    Confusedmommy Offline
    Junior Member

    Registered: 02/26/18
    Posts: 13
    Oh Kai, wanted to mention that the only reason I learnt about the acceleration opportunity was because my child told me that two of her classmates do it. When I email school to find out more, it took a month for them to respond and as I mentioned, it was not a favorable response. I just thought since the school is proactive in testing students, I wouldn’t have to worry. Didn’t realize they will ignore the test scores completely. frown

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    #246589 - 01/10/20 03:00 PM Re: Need suggestions on math acceleration [Re: tigerhog]
    ashley Offline
    Member

    Registered: 03/26/12
    Posts: 638
    Originally Posted By: tigerhog

    But then, since it is a promotion instead of acceleration, you may find yourself back in the same position very quickly, as soon as your child decided the pace of 7th grade math too slow. So perhaps it is more beneficial to spend the time to develop an enrichment plan instead of arguing with the district every year?

    I had to quote this because this is the universal truth for most kids gifted in math in a schooling situation (as opposed to homeschooling). Subject acceleration of 1 year is not adequate for any child that I have known who is gifted in math. I encourage you to get a hold of the 7th grade textbook that your school district uses (borrow one from the math department or buy a cheap used one on the internet) and see exactly how much more advanced the next year's curriculum is compared to the current one. That would give you an idea of what is in store. What I suggest is that while you advocate for your daughter's skip, simultaneously look into how you can provide enrichment in math, independent of the school, and try to bring back her love of math. In most cases, kids who are skipped by a grade or two in math find the content within their grasp.
    Some ideas for enrichment so that it brings back her interest in math are: Math Circles, Math Festivals for girls (Julia Robinson is excellent), low pressure and fun math competitions like Math Kangaroo, youtube channels that talk about fun math concepts in a way that engages kids: ViHart, NumberPhile etc.
    Good luck.

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    #246590 - 01/10/20 04:45 PM Re: Need suggestions on math acceleration [Re: tigerhog]
    indigo Offline
    Member

    Registered: 04/27/13
    Posts: 4201
    Originally Posted By: tigerhog
    It makes no sense to me that they refuse you because they “cannot make change mid year”. Kids do transfer in and out of school anytime in the year, all the time!
    ...
    You have to make a strong case by demonstrating that your child has already master enough materials to fit into the middle of 7th grade.
    I totally agree. While this may get your child in a better-matched curriculum, with more closely-matched academic peers, pacing may continue to be an issue. This would still be a vast improvement over the present situation.

    You may want to read up on under-achievement... once kiddos stop learning they typically do not start again. It is not necessarily "bad attitude"... it can be changes in the brain from lack of appropriate challenge and stimulation. (That was extremely paraphrased and summarized but hopefully that helps you research this important topic.) A good starting point may be looking for the work of Jim Delisle.

    These old posts may also be of interest...

    For continuing growth and development, kids need:
    1) appropriate academic challenge
    2) true peers
    For typical kids, these needs may be met in a general ed classroom, however for children with higher IQ/giftedness, these needs may not be met without intentional effort in providing advanced curriculum, and grouping for instruction with academic/intellectual peers.

    A crowd-sourced roundup on Advocacy... a collection of posts from parents on this forum, over time.

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    #246592 - 01/10/20 07:10 PM Re: Need suggestions on math acceleration [Re: Confusedmommy]
    Confusedmommy Offline
    Junior Member

    Registered: 02/26/18
    Posts: 13
    Thanks Ashley. I will definitely start by getting hold of 7th and 8th math books the school uses. I will also look into the enrichment programs you mention. Thank you indigo, there is a lot to digest there. I will go through the links you reference. I feel better already knowing I have a few things to do for my homework. Thanks to everyone.

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    #246595 - 01/13/20 02:58 AM Re: Need suggestions on math acceleration [Re: Kai]
    eva2 Offline
    New Member

    Registered: 12/20/19
    Posts: 1
    Originally Posted By: Kai
    Originally Posted By: Confusedmommy
    How can I convince the school that she is ready for more without coming across as just another pushy parent? Any suggestions? Thanks.


    Perhaps if you had her complete an above level class at another school and presented them with the evidence, they would be more responsive? This is essentially what we did when my son entered 9th grade at the public high school after homeschooling, and they actually placed him properly--honors precalculus, which is considered two years ahead of average in our district. I expect would have balked at a three year acceleration since he would have "run out" of math courses to do at the school for how to measure ring size


    Could you homeschool her just for math? In some states it is possible to enroll part time in public school. We are doing for some subjects (not math), and it's working well.

    I also wanted to mention that at my son's school, gifted students get no special consideration unless the parent pushes. They won't even admit that gifted students are eligible for certain things (like placement in AP classes early or without prerequisites). We got that information from other parents.


    you can to change of shool

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