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    ebeth Offline OP
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    Okay everyone, I need a little bit of help here.

    We just got back from an acceleration meeting with the school this morning. To review, DS8 is now in 4th grade after a mid-year grade acceleration last year (a jump from 2nd to 3rd). He has a summer birthday (and so he just turned 8), and is a year and a half to two years younger than most of his current classmates. Most of the summer birthday boys that are DS's age are in second grade currently.

    The school is proposing that he be subject accelerated in science to 7th grade.

    My brain is completely overloaded with shock and a healthy dose of panic. Can anyone walk me through processing the idea of an 8 year old taking Jr. High Science with 12 to 13 year olds?

    I think that he has the conceptual knowledge necessary to handle the work. They gave him the Woodcock Johnson Revised test on science and he scored at a grade equivalent of 16.9th grade, which is what... graduate school level? He loves the very abstract concepts of science, but I'm not to sure about the nitty-gritty details and calculations. But he does not have the writing skills necessary to write papers or lab reports. His writing skills are probably below 4th grade. And the question of social issues??? The school committee members looked at me and said that 7th graders would be no worse a social fit for DS than the fourth graders that he is currently with.

    We have a day or two to think about the acceleration. Can you suggest questions that we should be asking? There is another kid in school, a 6th grader, who will be transported up to the Jr. High for the same class, and so DS could ride the bus with him or her. So the transportation is not an issue. My biggest concern is the handwriting, the ability to write long paragraphs about scientific observations, working with lab partners and other group work, and the level of homework (time commitment and ability to focus). Other issues might be the fact that, in two years time, he would be in classes with high schoolers (puberty issues, driving, alcohol...) and he would run though all of the science curriculum by the time he is 13?

    Any thoughts would be much, much appreciated!


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    Would the school be willing to allow adaptations for your DS. Maybe recording class instead of note-taking? Allowing him/you to type his work for him instead of handwriting?

    Can you see assignments, a past test, and a sample of the level of writing work expected for a 7th grader in the class? That might tell you if it's possible for your DS or not.

    I don't think I'd worry about running through the science curriculum early at this point. If he's capable of doing 7th grade work now, then that's going to happen one way or another really, isn't it? Out of class, if not in it, you know? And if he does it through official channels, then there's a much higher possibility of the school providing something more advanced for him when you get to that point. That could be a very good thing!


    Kriston
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    ebeth Offline OP
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    Quote
    I'm not sure science lends itself as much to radical acceleration of the child is not well rounded.

    Dottie, I went into the meeting with the same thought. Without seeing their WJ III test data yet, I had thought that math would be a better subject acceleration than science because of the writing and group lab work. He scored fairly high on most of the math subtests: Broad Math, Math Calculation, and Applied Math were all in the 99.9th%. But they would not consider a subject acceleration in math because his Math Fluency was only at the 47%, which came in at the 2.7th grade equivalent. Math Fluency was defined as "written problems involving basic addition, subtraction, and multiplication. This is timed, to see how many problems he could complete in 3 minutes." So most of his other scores were in the Jr. High level of math by grade equivalency, but they would not consider even a one-year subject acceleration in math.

    It seems like writing is the common hold up. But they were not as concerned about it for science.?? It doesn't make a lot of sense?


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    What's his PSI score? Is he like my son: deep but not fast?

    How much does speed actually matter in 5th grade math? It has been too long since I was there... If he has the concepts and can do the work, but it takes him 20 seconds to do the problem instead of the 10 seconds that it takes the other kids, does that really matter?

    If not, then I think you could make the case that the fluency score shouldn't preclude a math skip, provided you present it appropriately.

    Just a thought--feel free to ignore! smile


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    ebeth Offline OP
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    Quote
    Would the school be willing to allow adaptations for your DS. Maybe recording class instead of note-taking? Allowing him/you to type his work for him instead of handwriting?

    Can you see assignments, a past test, and a sample of the level of writing work expected for a 7th grader in the class? That might tell you if it's possible for your DS or not.

    Good questions, Kriston. The 7th grade teacher was at the meeting, and when I expressed my concern about writing skills, she said that she would be willing to help by giving him paper copies of work that she presented on the board. Another member of the group chimed in and said that they thought that DS should just learn how to adapt to the additional writing requirements.

    I will have to ask about the past assignments and tests. That is a great idea!! The word that the acceleration team has repeatedly used is the need to produce a "product", or a written paper, report, or test. He has all of this factual knowledge in his head, but trying to get him to show the knowledge on paper is difficult. The school psychologist said he would happily talk her ear off on any science question that she asked verbally.


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    ebeth Offline OP
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    Is there any way the school/teacher can differentiate by giving deeper/broader assignments to your son?

    I didn't get the idea that the current teacher, who was at the meeting as well, had the ability or desire to differential to DS's level. Acceleration was the only thing offered or suggested.


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    So how about an oral exam? It's done for kids with LDs sometimes.

    I'm all for "adapting," but the key to adaptation is that it generally occurs gradually. It takes time. With writing especially, adaptation/growth takes place over years, not days! He's almost certainly going to be behind there. He just is. Until he catches up, the school, class, and teacher will have to do the adapting to him instead of the other way around or else it won't work.


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    ebeth Offline OP
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    What's his PSI score? Is he like my son: deep but not fast?

    His PSi score was a 126. I don't know if he falls into either camp? I know that he as trouble completing the timed math tests in school on a consistent basis. He will do it once (say 100 multiplication problems in 5 minutes), but he will get a 50% the next time, or a 75% the time after that. I think it is a focus/desire issue.

    I agree that the math fluency test should not preclude a math subject skip. But they were not inclined. They also asked DS if he would like a math subject skip. He has always thought that he was rather poor in math (due to the repetition of timed kill and drill tests). And so he answered no, he did not think that he would like to be accelerated in math.


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    That's how I felt, too, Dottie. That just seems a ridiculous reason to refuse math acceleration. I think that might be a battle I'd be willing to pick, regardless of how much they said "no!" Sometimes dumb "nos" can be overturned. That's one that should be, I think.


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    Definitely!


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    ebeth Offline OP
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    Dottie, are you as much of an expert on the WJ-III math as you are the WISC-IV? I would be happy to forward the scores to you... I have been staring at them for over an hour now, and I'm still trying to make heads or tails of them.

    The other question that I had about the DYS application is that they only gave the math achievement test on the WJ III and a science subtest. Could I apply for DYS with just that and a full WISC-IV, or does he need the other WJ III subtests?

    And I think that DS is only not interested in a math acceleration due to his self-doubt. He thinks that he is pretty dumb in math. (go figure... sometimes I wonder about the damage done by drilling math timed tests... but that is another issue!) I'm tempted to show him his scores in math and see if he thinks that he can handle 5th grade math at least. I'm also tempted to ask his 4th grade math teacher to give him the end of the year assessment test for 4th and see how he scores.


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    I had some issues with note-taking when I was accelerated to HS at age 11. A teacher gave me some help - up to this point I just observed and recalled. She made me turn in my notes, critiqued them, then gave them back - and I got the picture.

    I also recall that the teachers moved me to where I sat in the front row so they could hear me and I could see them better. This really helped.

    I had a locker at the HS, but due to the issues related to going back and forth from the middle school, I got a big backpack for all my books. I had no friends at lunchtime at the HS until some football players sat down at my table.

    Other than that, it was a blast.

    If he can have a cohort, that will be good.

    The other thing might be test taking preparation and problem solving - laying out the knowns and unknowns and THEN solving things, rather than just executing. For tests - doublechecking his answers!!

    I think that if he is accelerated in a subject like science, then that will pull up his other areas as well.


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    ebeth Offline OP
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    Quote
    I can't find a stand alone "science" test on the WJ-III, but there is a science subsection (28 questions) under "Academic Knowledge". It also includes Social Studies and Humanities in the final scoring. Just FYI...

    The paper that we got from them on the test results says that he was given the WJ III Tests of Achievement (but only the math subsections), and the WJ Revised for the Science. They did mention that they had to dig to find a test that had a science subsection on it. They computed a separate Standard Score for the science subsection.


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    There are worse things than taking a shot and being asked for more, though. And I'd think you'd have a good chance of getting him in without their requiring more. I'd say it's worth a try! Nothing to lose but your time and the cost of the postage! smile


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    ebeth Offline OP
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    Ah...mystery partially solved, LOL! I'm surprised that they didn't do some reading tests for good measure. Acceleration in any subject should address reading, comprehension and possibly a few other areas as well.

    That is a very good point, Dottie. I will have to think about that!

    I have to run to pick DS up from school. If you continue to post questions, I will respond as quickly as I can. Thank you all for helping. I'm beginning to breathe again. (still confused, but at least not turning blue from hyperventilating!)


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    ebeth,

    In the middle school my kids have gone to, out 7th grade science is good, but not that tough - I really believe an advanced 8 or 9 yr old could do it. I'd be surprised if my sons take more than a few lines of cryptic notes, and really that's only if it's required. If you decide to proceed with the acceleration-- remember, you can reverse it if it isn't working.

    It's such a shame that time will be spent traveling to/from the other school, especially in today's age of technology. What does he miss during the traveling? I wonder if you could visit the class with your son and see what it's like (and if it's worth the trouble, stigma, etc.)

    Everywhere I look there are virtual labs available free online, free podcasts of science info, tons and tons of stuff out there that no classroom teacher has time to access even a fraction of it. Yesterday I looked at the NASA website--lots of stuff. Our state Dept of Health has a lot, too. EPA website is loaded. Cogito.org. Videos--Discovery channel, planet earth BBC series, our library has many. Science experiment books. I guess what I'm trying to say is, isn't there a way to give him time, opportunity and a little proctoring to do some advanced independent work? So many things to explore, so little time.
    Mind you, I am rarely one who would shy away from an offered acceleration. Maybe your middle school and later your high school are pleasant, civilized environments...But! I just walked through our high school and got caught in the hall when the bell rang. It was Crazy. Large people, some scary and weird, and so many kids. I actually thought about my DS10 and how I couldn't imagine him going there for math class (which is what I thought about this year). Too frightening for me & I'm Old.

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    ebeth - I'm curious as to why they even looked for a test that had a science subsection? Did you ask for this specifically? So the science subsection is only on WJ-R? I saw, as Dottie mentioned, that the WJIII has a science/social studies combined section. Would that have not suited the purpose?

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    ebeth Offline OP
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    Cym,

    Great list of resources. Thanks. I'm going to cut and paste them into a file folder I keep on gifted resources. And I agree that there are so many things to explore, and so little time. That is one reason why I hate for him to be sitting through mindless lectures on using your senses for scientific investigation, which is his current 4th grade class is doing. It is just so hard when they are caught between two very different worlds, neither of which they belong in.

    And I truly don't even want to think about high school, let along walk through the hallways. Too scary for me as well!

    The only plus about this proposed skip is that DS would be in a class of only 13 kids, two of which (not including DS) are skipped kids. But the teacher made it clear that she would not necessarily group them together, since she expects all of her students to interact and get along. But the school might be willing to let these three (all boys I think?) travel together in a pack through high school?


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    ebeth Offline OP
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    Dazed

    We met with the Curriculum Director over the summer in order to ask for DYS-worthy Achievement Testing. The CD took at look at his WISC-IV results before we arrived and called the Gifted Teacher for our school. The gifted teacher must have recommended a science acceleration, and went out and found this test. I really don't know why they didn't give him the rest of the WJ III. It is a mystery. I expected them to give him the full WJ III in order for us to apply to DYS.

    So now I don't know whether we need to go back and ask for more testing or just apply for DYS with what we have?


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    Originally Posted by Dottie
    Apply with what you have, grin ! Seriously...I think his chances are excellent. Even if the reading scores came back "lower", he would probably be accepted based on the math.

    Yeah! What she said!

    Apply. The worst that will happen is that they'll ask for more info...which you'd have to be getting together if you didn't apply yet anyway, right? So you might save yourself some time and money by applying now. Nothing to lose.

    With his scores, I feel quite confident that they won't give you a flat no. "Need more" is as bad as it gets. It's a no-lose situation!


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    ebeth, I truly believe my DS8 would do just fine in 7th grade science (with accommodations) if he were so lucky to have had it offered to him. Not sure if your DS is in public or private, but our district's detailed curricula are posted online. Not only that, but our district's 7th grade science refers the kids to the kid sites, while DS has spent hours (or months, as the case may be) on the regular sites. Writing, and probably reading, would be a big issue for him, however (and he'd have to catch up on the math, depending on the course, which does not appear to be an issue for your DS).

    So, thought I'd mention that we are training him on Dragon Naturally Speaking 10. He's only had one session, and as long as he doesn't mumble, it hears him almost perfectly. I expect your DS8 would be able to use the software very easily. I just got it. The new version is still on sale for $99 (Dragon Preferred 10). It is great. They also have portable transcribers, so he could dictate his observations into his lab book. Of course, being 8, he'd probably be too self-conscious to do it, but you might want to look into it. It is the great equalizer, as far as I'm concerned. The only problem I've experienced so far is that my DS doesn't want to type or write, just dictate, now that he sees how easy and how much fun it is (especially in the early round where it misunderstood him.)

    Maybe this helps?

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    I just would make sure to ask what your 7th grade science entails. My DS is in 7th grade science which is life science. He said they got their texts yesterday and everyone flipped to the section on the human reproductive system. There was much blushing and giggling since they are all 12 adn 13. I am quite sure DS would have been able to handle that material at 8, but I am not totally sure it would have been fun for him to be with a bunch of 13 year olds while he was learning. KWIM?

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    As science is his greatest area of academic interest and intensity, I am certain that my son would have loved the strong 7th grade science class at his previous school at age 8. The teacher there is a true science guy and was known to be demanding, but if he didn�t penalize too harshly for spelling errors on tests, I think ds would have done really well! He really would have loved it and if given the chance, we would have subject accelerated him to that level in a heartbeat! I think you should give it a try.

    My only concern is if your ds doesn�t receive math acceleration commensurate to the science instruction, will he be eligible for continued science acceleration into high school level classes? According to some books and articles that I have recently read, math acceleration is a required accompaniment or possibly a prerequisite for rigorous high school science courses.

    Could you request a math evaluation by a middle school or high school teacher to determine his eligibility for math acceleration too?

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    I spoke w/ a mom in my district whose son is the only whose been accelerated, perhaps ever lol. She said something to the effect that to have DS tested in 5th grade on the end of year math test for 6th grade. If he passed it, he could go into 7/8th grade honors math. This would then make him eligible to accelerated in science. So it sounded like math acceleration was required for science acceleration.

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    My son�s middle/high school describes AP Chemistry as a rigorous math based course which requires math department approval.

    My daughter�s school requires concurrent or prior AP calculus in order to be eligible for AP physics.

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    ebeth Offline OP
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    Hummm... So if he skips to 7th grade science now, how much of a math skip would he need in order for the math to keep up with the science? Would he have to skip all the way up to 7th grade math, or would a partial skip (merely up to 5th or 6th, ROFL!) keep him close enough?

    I don't know what the math sequence is for our school? Is Alegbra 2 in 9th grade then for your school Dottie?

    I'm so confused... He was in second grade six months ago, and now I'm worried about Algebra 2? Ye gods!


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    Originally Posted by ebeth
    I'm so confused... He was in second grade six months ago, and now I'm worried about Algebra 2? Ye gods!


    Oh, ebeth! I feel this way every time someone starts talking about college for 10yos. Can we get 'em through 2nd grade first? I'm so not ready for that!

    You have my deepest sympathy!

    You know, I had a thought, so I'll throw it out there. Feel free to reject it out of hand...

    Does the acceleration have to be SO radical? Could he go to 6th grade science, for example? It's rare around this forum to ask for LESS of a skip, but maybe in your son's case, that's a better choice. It might solve some of these problems. Is there a reason why 7th is a better choice than 6th (beyond just that it's harder, of course...)?


    Kriston
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    I posed that very question to the acceleration committee, Kriston. They all agreed that 6th grade science was an option, if we wanted it. It think that they felt that 6th grade science would not fit his ability though. I went into the meeting thinking that they were going to offer 5th grade science, and so I studied up on the course curriculum for 4th, 5th, and 6th. All of it was material that was very basic for him. I even went all the way up to 9th grade science before I could find any material that he had not already mastered. He came home from the WJ III testing talking about moles and what they measure in chemistry, so he had to make it up that high on the testing. He nearly passed a college level physics course that was a conceptual based physics class (very little math) while in 2nd grade, and he routinely picks up my college level chemistry book and reads it for fun. He can chat happily about covalent bonding and the electron orbital shell model. He can read any adult science material that we have laying around... i.e. Scientific American magazine or Discovery magazine.

    I think the acceleration committee thought that 7th grade would be as far up as the could comfortably place him due to writing and social issues. It was about half way up to where they thought his science ability was.

    So I am toying with putting him in 6th, to avoid the issues surrounding Jr. High. But if you are going to jump them up 2 grades, you might as well go up 3 if it is a better fit with the material. Am I crazy to think that?

    BTW, we asked DS what he wanted to do with the acceleration. He was all for it. His eyes got kind of big when we said that the school had agreed to let him go up to 7th. (we had asked him about going up to 5th before the meeting.) But even with my explanations about 7th grade might have more homework and a lot more writing (which he is not too fond of), he was very excited. We asked if he wanted to go up to visit the classroom and the teacher to check it out. He said that there was no need... he was just ready to go!


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    No, I definitely don't think you're crazy to think that! Not one bit!

    I only asked because if the 7th grade class won't accomodate his writing issues--which he's BOUND to have!--I fear they're setting him up to fail.

    I guess I was thinking that if the choice is between two academic situations that are both covering material he's mastered, then he might as well be in the one that will accomodate his other needs.

    But that's just an idle thought, and even then, only if they won't accomdate his writing issues. Trust your gut.

    If they WILL accomodate his writing issues, then personally, I'd say full steam ahead, and on to 7th grade! smile


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    ebeth Offline OP
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    Okay, so given that DS wants to skip up to 7th grade science, what do you think is the biggest lag or gap that can occur between Science and Math accelerations. If DS goes to 7th grade Science with 4th grade Math, then by 9th grade Science he will be in 6th grade math. That doesn't seem like it is going to work. A two year gap between Science and Math seems like the bare minimum? And if his WJ III math scores were high enough for a DYS application, then it seems like I need to talk to the school again.

    I thought that maybe I should ask the 7th grade teacher to see if she would meet with DS... maybe sort of an interview process. I would trust the teacher to be able to judge fairly quickly if DS could handle the various aspects of the classroom. I also thought that I could ask her for samples of a typical homework or project then.

    And yes, Kriston, I did worry that they were setting him up to fail. I keep seeing both sides of the coin... as it spins, and spins, and spins....


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    How about 7th gr. science/ 4th gr. math
    then the next year 8th gr. science/ 6th gr. math
    then 9th gr. science/8th gr. math
    then 10th gr. science/10th gr. math

    That way he's only skipping in one subject at a time.

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    Maybe you can get the math acceleration out of the science acceleration? It's a pretty strong selling point, I think! "He'll need X if he's going to do Y next year" is pretty persuasive...

    Yes, I think you should talk to the school again. Fer sher!


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    Cathy A: I look at the number of grade skips that you propose for math, and it makes me realize just how far behind in math he would be compared to science. DS would have to go through three sets of double grade skips in order to equalize the math and science grades. Oh boy! That means being with three different groups of friends each year... As soon as he made a new set of friends in a grade he would jump two grades above them the next year. I realize it would only be for math and not for a whole grade... but it still seems hard on a kid that struggles to make friends anyway?

    I have a question. Everyone said that schools seem to take Achievement test scores more seriously than IQ scores. Now, after having WISC-IV scores for six months and WJ III Math scores for less than a day, it doesn't seem like the schools are really interested in the math achievement scores. DS had the magic 145 or beyond for the scaled scores in three out of the four of the math subtest (with only the pesky math fluency below it) and grade eq. that were 3+ to 6+ higher than he currently is placed. So what do I do with this data? How do you approach the school if they are focusing on the math fluency data, which seems to me to be the Processing Speed equivalent of the WISC-IV?

    Should I focus on the scaled scores that DYS wants and look like IQ scores? The school doesn't really seem to understand these. The grade equivalents seem kind of arbitrary, and don't necessarily track with the scaled score. DS's highest scaled score was in Math Calculation, which had a GE of 4 grade levels above his current grade, while the Applied math scaled score was 17 pt lower but had a GE of 6 grade levels above current grade. It really makes no sense to me!

    Any idea what are the schools looking for in order to get math acceleration? (I know, that is probably the million dollar question around here!)


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    Hmmm... I see what you mean about multiple skips being a social issue.

    I wish I knew what to tell you about how to use the data to convince the school. What if he restests on the math fluency at the end of the year? Maybe he'll be sufficiently fluent then to satisfy them.

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    Cathy A: I look at the number of grade skips that you propose for math, and it makes me realize just how far behind in math he would be compared to science. DS would have to go through three sets of double grade skips in order to equalize the math and science grades. Oh boy! That means being with three different groups of friends each year... As soon as he made a new set of friends in a grade he would jump two grades above them the next year. I realize it would only be for math and not for a whole grade... but it still seems hard on a kid that struggles to make friends anyway?

    I'm jumping in late here, but from what I've read his math knowledge is already on par with science, right? He'll be making friends, or at least acquaintances in his science right now. If they don't go for acceleration in math right now, I'd ask for the whole jump in math for next year. That'd get him even in science & math next year, he'll know kids in math from his science classes. And let the school know if they don't accelerate him in math this year that you will expect it next year and ask for differentiation in his math now to prepare him for the skip next year.

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    Dottie has probably already posted this lol but I've read the WJIII shouldn't be used for grade placement. There aren't enough questions per grade level to make that decision. You would then go to out of level achievement tests, SCAT or the STEP testing.

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    I'm with CFK. I'm just not convinced that this skip does him any real good in the short term, though maybe it sets him up better for 4 or 5 years down the road. (But that's just a maybe--without same-level math acceleration, I'm it's far from a given...) If the multiple math skips aren't a good solution, then it doesn't seem like a very helpful skip for your DS, ebeth.

    At the same time, it seems like it carries a pretty high risk.

    Anytime I see that combo of high risk/low immediate reward, I get nervous.

    I think I'd favor independent study over this particular solution, too. It seems more appropriate to the child right now.

    But I freely admit that I'm no expert...



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    We had another round of discussions with the school this morning. They seem to have come to the same decision: the math skills need to be advanced in order to keep up with the science. They are proposing that DS should have curriculum compacting in math, so that he would cover 4th and 5th this year, and 6th and 7th next year. I'm am still a little uncertain how this curriculum compacting would be accomplished since DH was the one discussing it with the school. (Anyone who knows DH would say that he is an absurdly optimistic person who always sees the silver lining in a storm cloud.) But it sounded from DH like the school would pull DS out of his regular 4th grade math class for individual math instruction with the gifted teacher. Could this be too good to be true?

    So it looks like we are proceeding with the radical acceleration to 7th grade in science. DS will either go up to the Jr. High today or on Monday for a trial run. If all goes well, we will make next Wednesday his first official day in 7th grade science. The school wants to wait for few weeks before beginning the math compacting in order to not completely overwhelm him. But hopefully by the end of Sept., DS will have a special math tutor at his school. smile

    Wow. And all of this happened in a matter of 24 hours?

    I think the school understands the need to watch this carefully and make sure that it is a happy fit for DS. They are planning to monitor the acceleration carefully, and are willing to step in and pull him back if things do not work out.

    I just need to think about it one day at a time. Let's see what DS thinks of the new class, and what the teacher thinks of DS (his writing skills and maturity). Then we will proceed from there. I like the suggestion of asking for sample homeworks or lab reports. Hopefully I will get a better feel for if DS will be in over his head or not.


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    Quote
    He got where he is without science in school so far. All the 7th grade class will do, it seems, is put an emphasis on skills that he doesn't have yet - writing - with no growth of the skills that he does have - high school/university level knowledge.

    DS has probably learned science along the same pathway that he has learned math so far. He feeds off of exciting, abstract concepts, and the more abstract the idea, the more he craves it. And so he knows a great deal about physics, biology, chemistry, geology... but all from a very abstract perspective. It is similar to wanting to know algebra, but not wanting to sit and work out the nitty-gritty deals. He could probably use to go through some of these basic science classes, if only so that they would teach him to focus on some of the basic concepts, i.e. the boring stuff that he just skips over. He is a child who sees the big picture right away and wants to jump to step 10 of an idea, without ever covering the first nine steps. I think that an early Jr. High class would be about right for teaching him to focus on details that he would naturally choose to rush over.

    I guess we will soon see. It is a giant leap of faith at this point.


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    Quote
    Dottie has probably already posted this lol but I've read the WJIII shouldn't be used for grade placement. There aren't enough questions per grade level to make that decision. You would then go to out of level achievement tests, SCAT or the STEP testing.

    Very interesting! I had not heard of the SCAT or STEP achievement testing before this discussion. I will have to look into it. It is curious then that if the WJ III is so quick and dirty as an achievement test, with very few questions per grade level, that it is one of the achievement test accepted for the DYS application. It must be fairly decent for spreading out the upper achievement test scores for it to be DYS-worthy??

    Is it just then that the WJ III is measuring potential (with the scaled scores which look like IQ scores?) and not a grade level? But I thought that the difference between IQ tests and Achievement tests was that IQ measured what a child had the potential to learn, while the Achievement tests measured what they had already mastered. This seems to be the opposite of the scaled scores verses grade equivalent debate? It seems that the WJ III would be best suited to deliver GE scores?

    Maybe this confusion is what is really throwing me for a loop with these WJ III scores? crazy


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    He sounds very much like my son but LOGs more advanced. lol.

    Good luck! I'm just amazed that the school is even willing to sit and discuss all this.

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    A psych friend, who was reviewing WJIII scores for me for a friend, when I tried to give him GE said something like "Oh those numbers are useless. I don't need those."

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    Well, getting accelerated science and curriculum compacted math sounds FANTASTIC! Really, I think that's an excellent outcome.

    How are you feeling, ebeth?


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    Originally Posted by ebeth
    I just need to think about it one day at a time. Let's see what DS thinks of the new class, and what the teacher thinks of DS (his writing skills and maturity). Then we will proceed from there. I like the suggestion of asking for sample homeworks or lab reports. Hopefully I will get a better feel for if DS will be in over his head or not.

    Good luck!! I think he will have a blast.

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    ebeth Offline OP
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    Ahhh. I think I understand the difference between STEP, SCAT, and the WJ III. And your explanation of the GEs makes sense too. DH and I are used to thinking in terms of uncertainties and error bars on numbers and graphs. I think that when the grade level projections become extended out beyond multiple grade levels, then the uncertainty of those projections begins to swamp the useful data. That is what we saw when we looked at the grade equivalent for DS's science score.

    Quote
    The scholastic Powers That Be don't like to acknowledge what a range the "general public" has in its ability level, and most are still holding to the pipe dream that all children can learn equally.

    I also like your insight in to the scholastic Powers that Be. It explains a lot. Really.


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    I'm feeling a little bit better today, although I didn't get too much sleep last night. My brain is a little bit foggy and slow today. Something akin to Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome with a side of WJ III shock and denial, perhaps? This isn't fazing DS at all, though. Or at least it hasn't manifest itself yet? We shall see. But I feel some optimism creeping back into my numb bones today.


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    I'm new to this board, so I hope someone can clarify something that has come up with my DD and DS.
    My understanding that a GE of, say, 9, on an achievement test taken by a 4th grader, does NOT mean that the 4th grader is doing 9th grade level work. It means that the child in question performed 4th grade work AS WELL AS an average 9th grader would perform the same 4th grade work. The test, after all, has 4th grade level questions, not 9th grade level questions. Thus, the utility of EXPLORE, SCAT, etc...to assess above-level ability.
    Is that right?

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    Interesting you brought this up. I just found this

    "What is a grade equivalent, and what does it mean?

    A grade equivalent (GE) is a score reported on norm-referenced tests that allows educators and parents to compare students based on the performance of other students relative to the school year. Based on a 9-month school year (typically September through May), the score represents a period during the school year, displayed as a number to show a grade and a month. The score is an estimate of the performance that an average student at a grade level is assumed to demonstrate on the test at a particular time in the school year. For example, a score of 5.8 represents a performance level typical of fifth-grade students in the eighth month (April) of the school year. It is important to note that grade equivalent scores outside the current grade are common and should be interpreted with caution. For example, a fifth-grade student could receive a grade equivalent score of 7.4. This does not mean the student can perform seventh-grade work � the student would not have been exposed to seventh-grade content, nor would a fifth-grade test contain seventh-grade content. It suggests that a typical seventh grader in the fourth month would have received the same score if seventh graders had taken the fifth-grade test."




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    I found it here www.pearsonedmeasurement.com/research/faq_2d.htm

    I just googled "what does grade equivalent mean" and this came up and seemed to support what she was saying. I have no idea what tests this would be meaningful for. (I shouldn't venture into areas where I don't really know what I'm talking about should I???) wink

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    Just in case I have caused some mild form of school envy for DS's acceleration, I thought I should mention that we are not the first HG+ kid to go through the district. There has been another family, in a different school, that paved the way for us with the notion of radical acceleration. We are completely indebted to them for stretching the school norms to accommodate highly gifted kids. We have an excellent school system, but it was made easier for us because we were not the first to wonder into uncharted waters.

    So keep pushing those teachers and administrators to understand levels of giftedness, asynchronous development, and the academic needs of these unusual kids! Someone coming along behind you will also reap the rewards! grin


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    You are very gracious and correct in that statement!

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    E-beth,

    How's it going? What did your family decide for DS?

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    ebeth Offline OP
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    Let the chicken dance begin!

    I took DS8 up to the Jr. High yesterday after school to meet the 7th grade science teacher and to see the classroom. I was absolutely terrified by the whole thing. DS was like a kid on Christmas morning... filled with pure joy. I have one of those mom-memories that I know will be burned into my brain for all eternity... an image of tiny little DS skipping down a hallway that looks completely out of proportion to him... lockers that are hugh, water fountains that seem to tower over him... and he was completely oblivious to it all. Just pure joy and happiness.

    Today he went over for an actual class. I meet him outside at the end of the day and he was positively glowing. He talked excitedly about all of the science they had discussed during the hour. His lab partner was a girl that had been his 5th grade buddy when he was in first grade!! LOL!! And he came home with clear, readable notes and happily worked on his homework this evening.

    Tomorrow is his first official day. I haven't heard from the teacher about how the class went today, so I am still holding my breath a bit. But from DS's point of view, it is completely awesome!


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    an image of tiny little DS skipping down a hallway that looks completely out of proportion to him... lockers that are hugh, water fountains that seem to tower over him... and he was completely oblivious to it all. Just pure joy and happiness.

    Awwwwwww! That is so wonderful! I love that. smile

    I'm sure it went great. You never know how it will go until you try. I'm so glad he's so happy!

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    I'm glad you are giving it a try. Nothing ventured, nothing gained!

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    YAY! Just...YAY!

    smile laugh smile


    Kriston
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    YAH!!! What a wonderful first day!!!!

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    Fabulous! I actually teared up a bit. So sweet. I hope it continues to go so well!

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    Originally Posted by ebeth
    Today he went over for an actual class. I meet him outside at the end of the day and he was positively glowing. He talked excitedly about all of the science they had discussed during the hour. His lab partner was a girl that had been his 5th grade buddy when he was in first grade!! LOL!! And he came home with clear, readable notes and happily worked on his homework this evening.

    WHOOHOOO!!!

    I recall going into the HS on my first day of acceleration and it all seemed SO BIG! I had counselor who walked me around for the first few minutes then I was on my own. I was nervous the first class, but once class started, I felt right at home. I remember running all the way home when school got out I was so excited to do my homework!!




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    Originally Posted by st pauli girl
    I actually teared up a bit.
    Me too! Yippee!


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