Hi Lee, I bought your book, Setting the Records Straight and want to ask what to do on my son's records (age 14) when his math (Saxon) scores on his daily work are about a C- to D- grade, which he has to fix on his own and score 100% before he passes, but this is a consistent problem he is unable to correct. If I say he is an A or B grade because he self corrects and eventually gets 100%, that isn't going to work w/ college because they only give 1 chance, and the truth will be known. I don't test him--just give him daily work. What grade should I give him? I am confused and really think he might have some learning problems.
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I have a similar situation to Margaret, but it is different enough that I want to pose the question: Using a popular homeschool computer-based math program, our son began Algebra 1 in 7th grade, then Algebra 2 in 8th grade, and Geometry in 9th grade. He got solid A's in each course, but I was concerned when his PSAT and SAT scores (taken in 10th grade) weren't what they should be for having gotten A's. Since he is considering engineering, and needs to be very strong in math, I had him take the Saxon Algebra 2 placement test. Imagine my shock and surprise when he needed to start that book from the beginning! How do I reflect this on a transcript? Right now, I figure he HAS taken 3 levels of high school math with A's in all, and the Saxon is reviewing/reinforcing. And perhaps, also causing him to question his desire for engineering, considering it takes him a solid 2 hours to do math (and that is only 1/2 the problems!) Any advice?
Lee talks about explaining unusual situations in your homeschool cover letter: Writing a Homeschool Profile Letter Also, Lee talks about including middle school credits on transcripts that are presented by subject, rather than year here: How Do I Show 8th Grade Classes on a High School Transcript? But Lee often talks about showing your child at their best, so you will have to decide whether or not to include those credits earned in middle school. Of course, my answers are pretty general. To learn more about how to create records for your unique situation, consider The HomeScholar Gold Care Club! Lee would love to talk to you, and she will have more specific answers for you.
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Margaret, you can give credit either by the book (1 textbook = 1 credit) or by giving 1 credit per year of work, perhaps calling it Algebra 1A and the next year Algebra 1B. for more information, see my free class on grades, credits, and transcripts here: http://www.thehomescholar.com/homeschool-transcripts-webinar.php
This post is very helpful and timely for me! But it brings up another question. You say: "In general, focus on comprehension and mastery – not working at a certain speed." My son is struggling with algebra and it will take him longer than a typical academic year to complete it. Can I grant a credit for algebra if it takes him, say a full 12 months or even longer? Does a course have to be completed within an academic year to count for a credit? That is something I've never been clear on. Thanks!
I would also suggest making sure he knows his arithmetic facts well (or have him use a calculator) and have him write out every step to the problem. When I was in school, I failed algebra the first time I took it, simply due to errors in arithmetic and faulty reasoning due to skipping steps. I took the class again with a different teacher who required that we write out every single step in solving the problem, and that we check our arithmetic with a calculator, and I passed with a good solid B.