Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Second day of Third Grade

Don't worry.  I'm not going to do this everyday.

11 am:  This morning has solidified my decision to homeschool my daughter.  In math class this week we are doing a review of addition and subtraction.  She has only been out of second grade for a week, so she should not have lost anything of great importance in that time.  Today's worksheets include addition and subtraction of two digit numbers with carrying and borrowing.  It is still pretty basic.  She stressed out because of this.
Let me give you some background here:  About a month before second grade was done, her class had the MAP test.  Her teacher sent home a practice worksheet for the kids to warm up before the math section the next day.  My husband and I were up until 10 pm trying to teach her how to do the math problems.  (They were the same kind of problems that she is doing today.)  She kept trying to start the problem from the left side and had no concept of borrowing or carrying.  This is how she had been taught in class.  We couldn't even begin to figure out why they were being taught this way.  Common Core (through clenched teeth).  She was finally able to understand what it was that we were teaching her and did well on the test the next day.
She stresses so easily.  She is so smart (and I'm not just being biased) but she panics when she doesn't immediately know or if she is afraid of getting the answer wrong.  Calming her down so that she can realize that she actually does know how to do the work is the hardest part.  For her and for me because I get frustrated at her because she doesn't want to listen until she has calmed down about it.  Sometimes this ends in both of us crying and me feeling very guilty.
Back to why my decision has solidified.  She has completed second grade with almost no ability to add and subtract.  But she is in the top 10% of the second graders at her public school in math scores.  That is insanely frightening.  She is on track.  She is doing great.  These are frightening statements from her teacher last year.  How can a student who is doing that well in the class have so little knowledge about how to actually do the work?  They cannot.  What is worse is what is coming up with third grade in the public school system.  I downloaded the public school curriculum from the school district website.  For the first 9 weeks of third grade in math, they are teaching multiplication AND division.  Then starting the second 9 weeks they move on to something else.  9 weeks is not enough time to teach both multiplication and division.  Especially when the students barely have an understanding of how to add and subtract.  I don't believe that the students in the public schools are going to be ready to move on to that at all.  Let alone get through it at such an accelerated pace!  I really feel sorry for those children.  Of course, only time will tell.

3:30 pm:  Good news everybody!  We finished with school earlier than we did yesterday.  Considering we start our school about 9:30 instead of 8, I would say that we are doing pretty good with the timing.

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