Sheriff’s Office Field Trip

We went with another homeschool family to our local sheriff’s office last week. I wasn’t really expecting it to be that exciting to be honest, but thankfully, I was wrong.

The kids and I both had a great time. They took us through every part of the department starting in the Sally Port (where they bring the prisoners to book in).

Then they showed what each person got while they were there, where they stayed (even showing them the prisoners), the tower where all the door controls are, and the admin offices.

Turner, who is fascinated with the police, asked a ton of questions, including if anyone had done a pit maneuver.

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They demonstrated the taser a few times, which made the kids jump, and towards the end they got to check out the cop SUV, including the tire spikes.

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It was a great trip; I’m glad we went.

Mastering Math – Going up a Grade Level

I’m going to introduce you to two Math programs we use, the only two. The two that has helped my kids progress quicker than I thought they would.

Around here, we don’t grade. We work until Mastery. Which is one reason why I love Khan Academy. Here is another post I did about Khan.

They make sure your kids know what they’re doing before moving them forward.

They test them through a Mastery Challenge each day.

They give real life examples.

Our kids are able to work at their own pace, whether that’s fast or slow.

There are videos explaining how problems are done, if you need them.

I could keep listing reason why I (we) love Khan, but I’ll spare you the giant blog post.

So I’m going to brag a little bit about my kids… I mean I am a parent, a proud parent, and I want to share with you what has helped my (just turned) 8 year old son.

Turner has always been good at Math, but Khan has helped him progress a little quicker.

Last week, he finished K-2. Mastered it. Turner just started 2nd grade (in July).

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Another thing about Khan, during Mastery Challenges, they sometimes put upper level problems, you can do those or click ‘I have not learned that yet.’ That is how he is already at 40% completed with 3rd grade right now.

2014-09-25At his pace, he’s pretty confident he will be finished with 3rd grade before he is even in 3rd grade.

Another Math curriculum that I want to mention, because I really feel like it’s a major reason why he and my daughter are advancing and understanding harder problems sooner is Miquon Math. Read about why we love it here.

One thing it doesn’t have though is word problems. That’s why Khan is a nice balance.

At first, Miquon is a little hard to understand and get the hang of, but we absolutely love it now. They introduce concepts such as Multiplying and Division by the end of book 1, and the end of book 2 introduces factoring. (both 1st grade level)

Here is a photo of Turner being introduced to factoring last week, end of Miquon Red Book.

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Now I’m not trying to get my kids to college by 12 or anything, but I do want them to be challenged and have fun with Math.

We see no reason to hold them back. If they are ready for bigger things, we are ready to help them.

If my kids need 1st grade writing and 3rd grade Math, that’s fine with me. I’ll do it. I’ll help them.

I’ll make sure they are not behind, but I will not close any doors incase they want to move forward.

Working year round has so many benefits, and I can see that clearly when I look at how far our kids progress and retain information.

Learning is a marathon that never truly ends. I want my kids to pace themselves, and enjoy the steps along the way.