We have enjoyed the last 30 days using the Time for Learning online program for my 1st grader, 5th grader and 6th grader. I will start off this review by saying it did not work for my deaf child and I deleted her account after the first day. It relies heavily on listening and reading, two of my deaf daughter's weaknesses. If your deaf child is a strong reader, this would be a great program.
My 5th and 6th graders have issues with focus and processing, yet they both did well with the program. If they were not familiar with a term, such as homophones, they could click on "I haven't learned this yet" and it would teach them. Loved it! I'm not a fan of sitting in front of a screen of any kind for hours on end, so we only used the language arts and math programs, but they also offer science, social studies, art and language arts extension classes. The graphics and videos were engaging and fun. My kids loved it and I never had to fight them over doing their computer time. With doing the two subjects they spent about 1.5 hours a day on the computer. I finished up regular school with our books.
The first grader equally loved her computer time. I always did book work with her first and her reward was working on the computer. I found the program challenging, yet flexible.
I was able to set up each subject at whatever grade level the student was currently working. This way my older students were doing the same language arts programs, but different math programs due to their grade levels.
Overall, I loved the program and highly recommend it. Especially for large families that need some independent work time or for beginning homeschoolers that want a little extra guidance. The biggest pitfall of the program is the price. It is $20/mo per child. Way out of my price range unfortuantely. It requires internet access, but most families have access to that. Since it doesn't require a download a student can work on any computer.
My son, who was diagnosed with ADHD, slow processing speeds, and a spelling disorder (whatever), has been controlled with a GF/CF diet for 2 years now. I refused medication from the neuropsycholigist and went to a chiropractor using applied kinesology. He tested Little Man and immediately realized it was a nutritional issue. Further study showed he couldn't handle gluten or casein well. This began his GF/CF diet that seemed to work, but my research didn't stop.
I discovered there were several conditions causing sensitivities to Gluten and Casein and pin pointed which situation seemed to fit Little Man. It is where the body can't breakdown those proteins, thus producing an opiate peptide. When these reach the brain it gives him a brain fog, similar to a drug. He can't focus, think clearly, or remember anything.
Then I learned of a urine test that could test for these peptides. I went thru all the right channels and my insurance covered the test. If this test came back negative we would have to start all over on another path. Well, I just got the results back today and it was positive. It confirms my suspicions! And now we know how to approach this. Yes it's a gut issue and will always have to be addressed with diet.
Our lives seem to be forever changing. Homeschooling Short Stuff, our deaf daughter, has always been a roller coaster. Mostly because of her other learning disabilities, not her deafness. We did experience two years at the state deaf school and that last year was such a battle with her. But after a lot of discussing, praying, and researching options, we have decided to enroll her back into the public school system.
Oh, we didn't give up on her at home! She just has some demanding needs that we just haven't been able to meet and it has interfered with the other children's education. With the move into town, we are now closer and services are much more accessible too.
At this point we don't know what services the school will provide. We are taking this one little step at a time. So Thursday she will go and tour the campus and soon we will meet with the IEP team to see what is the best fit for Short Stuff. This is the first time we had several viable options. We have always lived in small school districts, that had two choices. And one wasn't a viable one for her. But there are advantages to small school districts too.
I want to assure all my readers that this website will continue and I will still add new content here. I still homeschool two other special needs kids and have (almost) three littles. Plus I will be doing learning helps with Short Stuff in the afternoons as she needs more help.
I'm actually kind of excited that I get to "help" teach instead of being the main teacher. I won't be frustrated with her by the end of the day and when she comes home from school, I will take her aside and talk about her day. We have already made a family plan, that the hour after she gets home is her hour with Mom.
Making these decisions are never easy. So please join me in prayer as we embark on a new journey.
It's the third week into school and everyone is getting the hang of it. We have good days and bad days, but we just start each day anew!
So far we have studied the sun, reptiles, Pilgrim's Progress, embroidery, Creation, hummingbirds and trains, sprinkled with math and language arts.
We even fit a camping trip in there (which is where we spotted the hummingbirds!) I would have to say school is off to a fantastic start. As we get used to our schedules and routines, I am sure our good days will out weigh the bad ones.
Oh please come in! Welcome to our "special" place full of noise, talking with our hands, picture charts, lots of curriculum, therapy, and general chaos! We really aren't that much different, just have to approach things from a different direction.
Our deaf and oldest child requires her own schedule. There is little she can do with the others. This is for several reasons.
- Reading and signing at the same time is very difficult for mom.
- Her reading skills are so far behind her brother and sister they are rarely covering the same material.
- Short Stuff also lacks myelin in her brain, causing other processing issues. This limits her is some ways, so her education heavily focuses on life skills.
We teach her the same subjects as the others so they are all learning similar things, we just have to tailor it to her. And as seen in the picture above, she is gifted in many other ways! She is holding up her first quit!
Little Man always adds his own excitement to the house! Diagnosed with ADHD and slow processing speeds, I dove into a world of altering his diet in an effort to avoid drugging my child. After testing, we discovered he couldn't handle gluten or casein. So for a year and a half now, Little Man eats an entirely different diet than the rest of us. It is amazing the difference!! Email me if you want more info.
He is my strongest reader and that is such a blessing! He reads everything - including the manual to his digital camera. His other love is chickens. Here is a picture of him proudly displaying his egg candling box.
Since we just recently changed his diet, school had always been a struggle. So he has been playing catch up this past year. If things continue to go as they have been, he should be all caught up by the end of this coming school year! He is finally to a point where he can work independently. Having many children and them all needing lots of individual attention is exhausting. I am enjoying this next phase of homeschooling!
Tinker . . . well she is always in her own world. I had to include a picture of her with the goats, because she truly would live int he barn if we let her. She was also diagnosed with slow processing speeds, but has her own take on the world. She is one of those kids always floating around . . . and running into things . . . and falling out of chair . . . and tripping over her feet . . .
She has eye tracking issues and her reading is laborous, but she doesn't give up and comprehends what she reads. So she does love to read. She does most of her schooling with Little Man. Right now, they are only one grade apart so much of what they do can easily been done together. Tinker's care does require occupational therapy, but she enjoys it.
And then in comes the littles! Sprout is 4, but doing kindergarten this year. This is where I have employed the big kids. Each older child has an activity each day to do with Sprout. They love teaching her and she loves the attention.
Peanut does a great job of ripping the house to shreds while the rest of us work. :) But that is what the 4:00 cleanup is for!
I found a wonderful way of teaching the gospel with easy drawings today! And it's free until the end of August! Click on the picture to take you to the free download.
Check out my review under Bible/Character Reviews!.
I have avoided "blogging" because I don't always have time to post regularly. But as I have been adding new information to my website I thought this would be an easy way to notify my readers when new content was added. So as this won't be a regular posting environment, it will be a way for me to communicate with you!
I want this website to be a great resource of information and experience. I don't know it all (not even close) but I love sharing what I have learned. I started this page a long time ago when I discovered there wasn't much information out there available for homeschooling a deaf child. But as the years have gone by (and there is still limited information available) I realized that a lot of what I share has to do with all kinds of special kids. I also have two others with learning difficulties and I use a lot of this with them too. So . . . I changed my focus a little. So while I say special kids instead of just deaf kids all my reviews will mention the deaf learner.
Looking forward to sharing with you!