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Thread: Year 1 in reference to Common Core & Upgrading old redesigned print versions

  1. #1
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    Year 1 in reference to Common Core & Upgrading old redesigned print versions

    I just had our 2012-13 assessments done and our certified teacher (also a homeschooler) has recommended that we pay attention to the fact that the new laws of Common Core do not require high schoolers to study anything prior to Civil War era. In regards to testing, she says that we must be prepared and that spending our last 2 years of high school studying ancient history and the middle ages would not be our best interest. We as a Christian family feel that ALL of history is important...not just what is to be learned after the Civil War. However, this DOES make a difference...as the PSAT (which we will be doing in the fall for our oldest) and future college bound testing will test primarily to the Common Core standard.

    We began Tapestry with our oldest 2 the year that Redesigned was launched (ordering 1 unit at a time through the yr as it was released). Not sure of the year?? We cycled through the 4 years in a total of 6 years, and then took a 1 yr breather to do a dvd history course. Now we are ready for year 1 again.

    My questions are two-fold:

    1) I want all my children to be on the same page. This is why we chose Tapestry in the first place. This year we will begin my youngest as LG, 8 yo as UG, one will be in D, and my oldest in R. I am not very receptive to taking her off-line to do year 3 while the rest of the kiddos do year 1. Also it would not be my preference to put her into another curriculum. But this seems to be my best option at this point. What are your thoughts?

    2) Since we bought TOG the first year that redesigned was released, what are our options for upgrading? We own the print copy and have the cd's. All of our 4 year copies are print and we did not have online capabilities then, so we do not have DE. I am definitely a *print* person, and we are online now. Where does that leave my old print version? If I upgrade to the current DE is my beautiful binders filled with page protectors obsolete? Can I still use them and just re-print portions that I are necessary? Or am I best off using what I have? We own most of the resources for year 1, so out-of-print books won't affect us. Not so for the other years (guess we'll cross that road when we get there.) However, I am a mom that looks way too much at the green grass on the other side and if there are new titles that we'd like to know about...well, this puts a wrench in it for us :-} I downloaded the DE Upgrade Order Form and do not see an option for print...if I decide to go that route. I am very confused!
    wendysuebee
    Mother of 5...dd(D), ds(UG), dd(LG), dd toddler, dd nursling

  2. #2
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    Oh, and I am now a "Mother of 6...dd(R), ds(D), dd(UG), dd(LG), ddtoddler, ddnursling" (need to update my profile)
    wendysuebee
    Mother of 5...dd(D), ds(UG), dd(LG), dd toddler, dd nursling

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    Honestly, I'd get rid of the certified teacher. First, I have strong doubts that what she told you was accurate: either that no public school children will study history before 1650 or that it applies to home school students. Next, the PSAT and SAT do not test history so no need to worry about that (the common core may effect how they test math). Finally, top, competitive students study world history there is an AP exam on the subject. It's less qualified students that will only study whatever the common core requires (the bare minimum). Do you want your family to do the minimum or something more?

    As to whether to switch to DE it is up to you. I have Redesigned and R books for Year 1 and I plan to stick with it. It appears that Tapestry is mostly switching to individual volume resources. I guess the one place I would look is that year one has some very empty weeks for younger students, I'd try to find out if some of those weeks were more full now. Since you have younger children this might be a benefit. But honestly my year 1 R plan is great the way it is now, I doubt I will switch.
    Last edited by Pat; 05-30-2013 at 07:08 AM.
    Pat
    "Of two evils, choose neither."
    Charles H. Spurgeon
    http://www.spurgeon.org/mainpage.htm

  4. #4
    "I'd get rid of the certified teacher" - this may not be possible...

    Some states require your end of year assessment be done by a certified teacher...If I remember correctly, OH is very similar to NY in it's requirement of this. (I lived in NY for the previous 4 years) Thankful to now be in Texas where I don't have to deal with that..but not everyone has that luxury.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CAustin View Post
    "I'd get rid of the certified teacher" - this may not be possible...

    Some states require your end of year assessment be done by a certified teacher...If I remember correctly, OH is very similar to NY in it's requirement of this. (I lived in NY for the previous 4 years) Thankful to now be in Texas where I don't have to deal with that..but not everyone has that luxury.
    Quite correct, but I'm guessing that you get some choice in who the teacher is. I'd find someone more amendable to Tapestry's four year history cycle and less likely to make pronouncements that are all black and white.
    Pat
    "Of two evils, choose neither."
    Charles H. Spurgeon
    http://www.spurgeon.org/mainpage.htm

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    Hi there. I just wanted to chime in as we live in a high regulation state as well, PA. We are required to keep portfolios and have a certified teacher evaluate them and interview our kids each year. We just finished doing that for this school year yesterday -- hip, hip hooray! It is so discouraging when your evaluator doesn't seem to support your curriculum choices. As homeschool moms, we second guess ourselves enough without outside assistance! Having said that, do you feel your evaluator is telling you NOT to follow this approach? Or is she simple expressing her opinion? Since she is a homeschool mom as well, she may be simply reinforcing her own choices to herself by commenting on yours. Or, she may be offering what she sees as constructive advice to you. It is still up to you whether to heed her advice or not. I this becomes a stumbling block for her in objectively evaluating your children, you may want to prayerfully consider seeking out another evaluator. However, it is not necessary that you have an evaluator who simply smiles and blesses your children's work every year. It is good to have someone whom you trust to offer you advice or encouragement when you ask for it,but not railroad you into following the exact same path she has chosen. We use two different evaluators, one for elementary years and another for 7th grade+ just because that is the way they are certified. There are many evaluators who have a K-12 certification but we like the ones we have. They are godly women who pray for our children throughout the school year and are available by phone or email all year if I have questions or concerns.

    I offer all this as encouragement to you to look at the bigger picture and not react to one person's opinion on what you should or should not cover. You are educating your children to serve an awesome God in whatever capacity He calls them to do...regardless of whether the curriculum aligns with common core standards or not. I can't tell you what the right course to pursue in your home. But try not to let worldy advice and tests drive the mission of your homeschool.

    As far as DE, you can upgrade or not. If you are happy with your current versions, keep using them. I you want to use the latest updates, upgrade to DE and then decide what you might need to reprint or not. You will probably find that you don't need to reprint as much as you think. I like reading my teacher notes in my good old print versions. I'll printout new discussion guides as needed. I use my existing resources as much as possible. I'm not sure yet how this will play out with the newest version of y2 ... But I'm not printing more stuff off until I dig into it and see what I need to refresh and update week to week. Also be sure to call customer service if you want to ask about buying a print add on to your upgrade. I don't know what they offer, but the staff is wonderful and very helpful.

    Warmly,
    Monica
    "For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11

  7. #7
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    Thank you ladies. As I have pondered each reply, I feel I need to make a couple clarifications. First, we highly value our assessment teacher. She has been with us since we began homeschooling 11 years ago and has become a friend. She has homeschooled her children for years, but has kept her certified status through subbing in her local school. Her services are a blessing and a labor of love to fellow homeschoolers. I have always appreciated her advice and suggestions and she is very respectful and understanding to our convictions (which may be different than hers). Apparently she has been doing much to keep up with the laws and her suggestion to try to stick with more current history for our oldest was given with the notion that we were college bound. With PSAT and SAT's around the corner, this seems very pertinent when they will focus on later history. As we are exploring our plan for the future, this is something that needs our attention.

    Now having said this...We are coming to the conclusion with our oldest daughter that she may NOT be college bound. However, our son, right behind her may be. I appreciate getting a heads up from someone who *knows* a bit more that we do about what is coming with Common Core and how it will affect students that will enter higher education and careers that are not usually driven by Biblical standards.

    I was hoping someone else might have considered the same circumstances and could give advise how to proceed. I do appreciate the advice given that gives me the *permission* to not worry about it and continue on doing what we have been doing.

    Monica, thank you so much for your very good advice about upgrading. I just need to spend some time looking at the book substitutions. Upgrading to DE is not terribly expensive, so may be a good option for me. I can always use the more current book lists as supplemental. If I like it better, I can always print. Thanks for clarifying something that I was making difficult.
    wendysuebee
    Mother of 5...dd(D), ds(UG), dd(LG), dd toddler, dd nursling

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    Wendysuebee,

    I'm so glad you have an excellent relationship with your evaluator. It does make a big difference.

    I find her observations interesting. My oldest is definitely college bound, and we plan to complete the full Tapestry rotation to finish high school primarily because Tapestry excels at helping me teach my children HOW to think, not what to think, all with a biblical worldview.

    I'm not experienced with PSAT or SAT, but am of the impression that history content is not tested. I know the SAT tests critical thinking skills, not necessarily content knowledge. I am unaware if the PSAT differs in that aspect. However if you are concerned about college admission requirements for the school and field your son wishes to pursue, you'd have to check with someone knowledgable in the admissions office.

    The bigger picture regarding the impact common core standards will have on homeschoolers is that no one is sure yet if there will be an impact. It is wonderful that your friend has been keeping up to date on developments. She is certainly way ahead of the rest of us. I do believe it is premature, however, to radically alter high school plans yet. But only you and your husband can decide what is best for your family -- so be encouraged in whatever you decide!

    Monica
    "For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11

  9. #9
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    Check your state laws, but as far as I know homeschoolers are not required to follow Common Core.
    - Amy

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    I was thinking of the original poster when I came across this blog entry about Andrew Pudewa's comments on common core standards. I don't know if these thoughts will be helpful to anyone, but here is the link: http://www.excellenceinwriting.com/blog/commoncore

    Monica
    "For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11

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