Saturday, October 28, 2006

Its Over!

Soccer season is finally over so we can return to our normal after school routine, and I can resume my extra-curricular tutoring. We also got our first report cards so I also know more specifically where I need to direct my efforts.

1st Grader - she got all proficients on her report card, but we disagree. We are not at all happy with her reading skills and are going to concentrate on phonics. We don't yet have a organized method of doing this, but are looking into several programs. Right now we just attack each word, one at a time.

3rd Grade Girl - Her only C was in reading. She is already getting after school tutoring and her reading has made some great strides. We are going to have her preform more out loud reading to us so we can monitor her progress. We are also going to work on her multiplication times tables. She is pretty good in math, but we want her to make sure that she is ahead of the power curve. We believe that multiplication facts are the key to almost everything at this level of math.

3rd Grade Boy - His lowest grade was in health which makes it hard for us to help him, since we have he hardly has any health homework. We will be more proactive about the subject. One thing that he could really use is some organizations skills... he really is a scatter brain.

6th Grade Girl - Our hardest worker. Math was her worst grade, but we have pegged it to a lack of mastery of the multiplication tables. We are continuing to work with her on this, because it will help her division and factoring skills. In reading she is way above grade level and is quite the book worm.

10th Grader -What a challenge she is. We recently pulled her off the cheerleading squad, because she 1. got caught smoking as school and 2. slacked off slightly in her English class. She is perhaps the most frustrating since her standardized scores are WAY above average. She, like me as a teenager, has a lazy streak. I wish I had parents like me when I was that age, because my life would of turned out a lot different. As long as we stay on her she will excel, but if we blink... then its back to mediocre. Hopefully, with several more years of nagging, she will internalize good work habits.

After spending two to three hours a night at the soccer fields, it is such a relief to have time at home for the little things. We were eating take out almost every night, but now we have to get back into the routine of cooking.


Anonymous said...

There is an excellent book that discusses reading instruction called Straight Talk About Reading by Susan Hall. Prior to reading this book, I had a mental block against phonics and hadn't seriously considered it to help my child.
When my child was in first grade I went to the library and checked out a bunch of phonics type readers. She needed a lot of new material, since she memorized books pretty quickly, fooling me into thinking she was doing better at reading than she was.

Marc said...

"are going to concentrate on phonics"

Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons, Siegfried Engelmann

Direct Instruction, scripted, simple to use. I think the bool was $19.99 at Barnes and Nobles. I bought this book when the idiots in our public school were teaching my daughter to memorize and guess rather than read. It worked wonders. Best of luck.

Anonymous said...

For your 1oth grader, look into books about underachieving gifted kids. I don't have exact titles or authors here at home, but will check at work tomorrow!

As for the 3rd grade reader--try taking a piece of a larger story and have her read that aloud several nights (for fluency--this is where you can also work on word sounds and spelling) and having her read the whole story and asking comprehension questions. By making her work on one small piece over and over, she becomes comfortable with the tone and style of the material and she will already "know" something from the story, which might spur her belief in her reading ability which in turn should prompt her desire to do more and do better. Just a suggestion that I found to work with my little ones.