Reading Comprehension

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nchasteen
Posts: 2
Joined: Thu Sep 24, 2020 4:36 pm

Reading Comprehension

Post by nchasteen » Tue Sep 29, 2020 11:26 pm

Hello all, this is my first post here, and I have a couple of questions. My son, who just turned 10, is in 4th grade at a public school doing "virtual" school. I am essentially homeschooling him though. I am not too thrilled with the curriculum the school is using, it is an online program called edmentum, by Calvert. Maybe I haven't given it time enough yet, but I am about to pull the trigger and remove him from the school and go with HOD. I am leaning towards Bigger Hearts. He is fine in math, and I plan on doing the Singapore math with him, but he really struggles with reading comprehension. He can say and pronounce most words just fine, but being able to comprehend what he is reading, he has struggled with since 2nd grade. I have really been working with him, especially since the schools shut down earlier this year. I really have seen improvement with him using vocabulary and reading books by Spectrum. I think he needs more though. Is there anything you would recommend specifically? Also, would the Bigger Hearts program be the best for him? (I'll bump his math up a level maybe, as he has no issues with math.)

Also, are there any online (or offline for that matter) reading comprehension assessments I can use to see where he is?

I appreciate any guidance, having never done this before.

-Nate

manyblessings
Posts: 35
Joined: Wed May 02, 2018 10:09 am
Contact:

Re: Reading Comprehension

Post by manyblessings » Wed Sep 30, 2020 8:04 pm

Welcome! The recommended reading comprehension program for Heart of Dakota is Drawn into the Heart of Reading. You will use real books-you can even purchase a book pack at your son's level so that you have all the books on hand. I would suggest that whatever level he is actually reading at, you start him with the Level 2/3 workbook. This is not like most reading workbooks-the questions and exercises are short and open-ended, encouraging your child to use critical thinking and read attentively. You will break up your child's books into manageable pieces to read each day-the workbook includes a chart to do this at the beginning of each unit. You also need the teacher's manual for Drawn into the Heart of Reading, but that is a one-time purchase that you can use through grade 8. This program was a great help to one of my children who had difficulty with reading, and was also great with my other children who didn't struggle. Bigger Hearts might be a good place to start-remember that the history and science books at this level are meant for you to read aloud to your student (a student who is able could read them independently). Also, make sure to visit the Singapore Math website and have your child take their placement test. Singapore Primary US Edition is a little different in its approach and can be about a half year to a year ahead of other math curricula. You'll want to select the tests for "Primary Mathematics" and start a level or two below where you think he might be. 3A/3B is about average 4th grade. https://www.singaporemath.com/placement-tests/
Lourdes
Happily married since 2009
Mom of 4 adults and 1 homeschooler
Used Bigger, Preparing, CTC, RevtoRev

christianmom
Posts: 17
Joined: Fri Jul 06, 2018 7:47 am

Re: Reading Comprehension

Post by christianmom » Thu Oct 01, 2020 7:37 am

Welcome to Homeschooling!

Bigger or Preparing would work for 4th grade. Have you looked at the placement chart on the HOD web-site? It could help you decide between the two. You can also ask questions here, or call Heart of Dakota, to help with placement. Carrie, the author, and Julie, the editor, both answer questions on this board every week or so. If you have specific questions about the placement chart and placement, Carrie, Julie, and the ladies on this board are very helpful in figuring out the best placement.

Drawn Into the Heart of Reading will help immensely with reading comprehension. So will the oral narrations for history. Both Bigger and Preparing use Drawn Into the Heart of Reading as part of the language arts portion of the program, and they both include oral narrations.

You can do a standardized test to give you some idea of where he is at in accordance with public school standards. If you go to the Bob Jones web-site and call or email them they are very helpful. We have to do annual standardized testing in our state for homeschooling, and I’ve used Bob Jones for years to order my tests from then they score them for me. The percentile tells me how they compare to other children at their grade level, and the grade equivalent gives me some idea of where they are at academically.

I would recommend doing the Singapore placement test. It’s an advanced math program, and often the number of book a child is using will be lower than grade level so it will help you to know where he will work best. It’s a strong math program.

I pray that Heart of Dakota and homeschooling will be a blessing for your family.

nchasteen
Posts: 2
Joined: Thu Sep 24, 2020 4:36 pm

Re: Reading Comprehension

Post by nchasteen » Fri Oct 02, 2020 11:20 pm

manyblessings wrote:
Wed Sep 30, 2020 8:04 pm
Welcome! The recommended reading comprehension program for Heart of Dakota is Drawn into the Heart of Reading. You will use real books-you can even purchase a book pack at your son's level so that you have all the books on hand. I would suggest that whatever level he is actually reading at, you start him with the Level 2/3 workbook. This is not like most reading workbooks-the questions and exercises are short and open-ended, encouraging your child to use critical thinking and read attentively. You will break up your child's books into manageable pieces to read each day-the workbook includes a chart to do this at the beginning of each unit. You also need the teacher's manual for Drawn into the Heart of Reading, but that is a one-time purchase that you can use through grade 8. This program was a great help to one of my children who had difficulty with reading, and was also great with my other children who didn't struggle. Bigger Hearts might be a good place to start-remember that the history and science books at this level are meant for you to read aloud to your student (a student who is able could read them independently). Also, make sure to visit the Singapore Math website and have your child take their placement test. Singapore Primary US Edition is a little different in its approach and can be about a half year to a year ahead of other math curricula. You'll want to select the tests for "Primary Mathematics" and start a level or two below where you think he might be. 3A/3B is about average 4th grade. https://www.singaporemath.com/placement-tests/
Thank you so much, I printed out the 2B/3A tests to start with, and if needed, I will go higher. I will also get the DITHOR teacher book as well and begin that. I look forward to doing this with him and hoping to see improvement with him. I appreciate your advice and I am glad to hear that it helped your children as well.
christianmom wrote:
Thu Oct 01, 2020 7:37 am
Welcome to Homeschooling!

Bigger or Preparing would work for 4th grade. Have you looked at the placement chart on the HOD web-site? It could help you decide between the two. You can also ask questions here, or call Heart of Dakota, to help with placement. Carrie, the author, and Julie, the editor, both answer questions on this board every week or so. If you have specific questions about the placement chart and placement, Carrie, Julie, and the ladies on this board are very helpful in figuring out the best placement.

Drawn Into the Heart of Reading will help immensely with reading comprehension. So will the oral narrations for history. Both Bigger and Preparing use Drawn Into the Heart of Reading as part of the language arts portion of the program, and they both include oral narrations.

You can do a standardized test to give you some idea of where he is at in accordance with public school standards. If you go to the Bob Jones web-site and call or email them they are very helpful. We have to do annual standardized testing in our state for homeschooling, and I’ve used Bob Jones for years to order my tests from then they score them for me. The percentile tells me how they compare to other children at their grade level, and the grade equivalent gives me some idea of where they are at academically.

I would recommend doing the Singapore placement test. It’s an advanced math program, and often the number of book a child is using will be lower than grade level so it will help you to know where he will work best. It’s a strong math program.

I pray that Heart of Dakota and homeschooling will be a blessing for your family.
Thank you for the information about Bob Jones and the standardized tests. Thankfully, we don't have to do that here, but I really like the idea of doing it, especially as I start this adventure off, I would really like to know where he is. With both of you recommending the DITHOR, I will certainly be picking that up as well. Thank you!

my3sons
Posts: 10604
Joined: Sun Aug 26, 2007 7:08 pm
Location: South Dakota

Re: Reading Comprehension

Post by my3sons » Wed Oct 07, 2020 2:04 pm

Excellent advice here already, so I'll just share that we have loved DITHOR for over a decade in our home. It definitely helps kiddos with reading comprehension and with vocabulary. It also ignites a passion for reading due to the excellent books Carrie has chosen! I hope you enjoy it as much as we have!

In Christ,
Julie
Enjoyed LHTH to USII
Currently using USII, MTMM
Wife to Rich for 25 years
Mother to 3 sons, ages 20, 17, and 13
Author of Women's Devotional https://www.ebay.com/itm/293355757184
Blogger https://my3sons-julie.blogspot.com/
Sister to Carrie

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