Thursday, May 24, 2018

How to get back to homeschooling.

Here we are again.

So, Jasmine did Kindergarten and 1st grade with Carson Montessori. It was a good fit for her, she's a very social person. Then we moved to England, specifically Leeds and the first school was okay, but she was one girl out of four in a class of twenty.

Then the second school was a Catholic school which we weren't really looking for but didn't mind. There were actually a large amount of Muslim students who went to the school, because it was the closest school to their home. So, while it was a "religious" school it was considered what an American would call a public school, in the UK they are called state schools, and a public school in the UK is what we in the USA would call a private school.  You can read more about different types of schools in the UK here.

We noticed even back when Jasmine was in the Montessori school that she was having trouble with reading and writing, but she was mostly keeping up with the class, things just took a bit longer to finish.  While she was in the Catholic school, which she attended for two years, things got a bit more extreme. This would have been for 3rd and 4th grade, Year 4 and 5 in the UK, so of course there was more homework, but things were just taking longer and long. Towards the end of Year 5 we knew that we were moving back to the US, so we paid approximately £240, about $290 back then, to have Jasmine tested for dyslexia. Which she definitely came back with, and the tester also suspected dyspraxia. Dyspraxia is the UK term for what the USA just calls developmental coordination disorder (DCD), but the tester wasn't qualified to certify that she does have that.

We got back to the States, and on the first day of school while I was registering Jasmine for class in Virginia and I told them that she has what would be considered an IEP for the UK (Special Educational Needs (SEN)) that they would not accept, they wanted to test her themselves, she had one also at Carson Montessori. And we waited, and waited, and waited. I went back in January and asked them about it again. And we waited, and waited, and waited.

We finally got a meeting in April and I was so frustrated with it. They told me that Jasmine didn't need an IEP, because there was nothing that they could teach her to help overcome her dyslexia. The difference between an IEP and a 504 is that for and IEP a student may be removed from class for individual or small group learning, basically the school was saying that they wouldn't remove Jasmine from class for extra help because there wasn't nothing that could be taught to her to help her overcome her dyslexia. Except Jasmine had been taken out of class since the beginning of the school year to see the dyslexic teacher because I spoke to her about the problems Jasmine had been having. I strenuously objected, they went with there isn't a teacher like that for middle school, and we had to settle for a 504.

The 504 meeting was a separate meeting near the end of April, they gave us an hour and we didn't even get through half the things that I wanted on the plan. That makes it sound like I was overly pushy about what I wanted, but they school told me to search for other 504 plans on the internet and see what is common, so I did that and of course came away with a long list. Now, to be fair the school agreed with everything that I wanted, we just weren't able to get through everything that I wanted.

So I asked at the beginning of the school year, school starts in September here, and it wasn't until right before May that there was a 504 in place, which isn't even what I wanted. With all of that time wasted of course Jasmine did poorly in 5th grade English.

Jasmine started middle school okay, for her 1st semester she got a B in English, and I guess we were too excited and thought she had a handle on things and kind of cut her lose to take care of homework on her own, that combined with her having a substitute for English for three weeks she failed the 2nd semester.

We had a meeting with her teacher in February, a full month and half after the 2nd semester, where he informs us she's in advanced English. Why would you do that to a kid who got a D in 5th grade English? It doesn't make sense. Also he had no clue she had a 504? Why? Do you not look up your students? I don't think I should have to go to every teacher that Jasmine has and tell them that she has a 504 plan and that she's dyslexic. I do understand that middle school teachers have a lot more kids, since the kids are changing classrooms, but I would think that there is some sort of system in place to let teachers know if their students had IEPs or 504s, this comes from my being a substitute teacher and always having notes on which students have IEPs and 504s. So Jasmine's English teacher either had to do the research himself and just didn't for whatever reason, or the ball was dropped some where and Jasmine's grade suffered for it. So we spent some time going over the things she needs help with, and really it felt like I could have been talking to the wall. She got a D for the 3rd semester, and she'll probably get a D for the 4th semester.

So, all of that drama, combined with they are shutting down the middle school and moving the 7th and 8th graders into a wing of a high school, one with a pretty bad reputation, we are pulling Jasmine out of public school again. I'm not sure how long we'll homeschool her, our lease is up in December and we are hoping to move to a better school district, a good high school. We might do all of 7th grade, we might also do 8th grade it all depends on how it goes. I think Jasmine would go back to public school for high school, there are a lot of social activities that I think she would miss.

Honestly once we stopped homeschooling I didn't think we would go back to it. Besides the actual education problems she has done wonderfully in making friends, which she needed when we moved to the UK.

If you have any suggestions for 7th grade materials, subjects, etc. they would be greatly appreciated.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Last Post Here

I haven't updated in a long time, I know and I am sorry.

So many things have changed and are going to change still.

The original idea of this blog was to write about homeschooling and homeschooling only, but I have so many other things that I want to write about that I didn't feel fit here. I have started a new blog at There may be some homeschooling posts there in the future, but it won't be the focus of the blog.

Part of the things that have changed in our lives is homeschooling. When Jasmine turned five there was an opportunity to enroll her into Carson Montessori, which is a charter K-6. We took the opportunity. Faith co-op had been great to us, but they and most of the families that attended lived in Minden, while we are in north Carson. (I believe Faith co-op is now in south Carson.) Also all the kids on our street are much older than Jasmine, so she had limited contact with kids and I think this made her a bit shy around other people.

We still do a bit of homeschooling, but it isn't as focused as before.

We also decided in September to sell our house and move internationally. My husband graduates from UNR with his Master's in Philosophy in December and he is applying to doctorate programs right now. So, we have the possibility of moving to the UK, Australia, New Zealand or Singapore as soon as next July and as far as late 2014. I am including all of that in my new blog.

Thanks and I hope you stop by and comment.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Pickled red onions

For some reason I bought three red onions for making the pickled nectarines, I don't know why. I don't normally use red onions in my cooking, I prefer sweet onions. So, I had a lot of left over onion that I needed to do something with.

I found a recipe for pickling them (and if you haven't realized I really do love just about everything pickled) at Closet Cooking here.

Because I had sooo much onion I chopped them up and put them in a half-gallon jar (just like I did to the nectarines, I guess it is a lucky thing that I have so many empty kimchi jars) and I quadrupled the recipe.

Both jars are cooling down on my counter right now, waiting to go into the fridge.

Spicy pickled nectarines

I found a recipe for pickling nectarines in the refrigerator by City Mama here and wanted to try it out.

The recipe calls for seven nectarines, but I could only fit four in a half-gallon jar as you can see in the picture.

I mostly just followed the directions, I used minced garlic I had frozen and I crushed the red peppers.

You can see the garlic floating at the bottom, and the onions are all on the top.

I haven't tried it yet, I just made it today.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Hello again.

Been away for a long time again. Oops.

I am writing two different blog posts right now. One about Korean dramas and one about the Korean language.

Is there anything anyone would like to see about either topic?


Thursday, June 2, 2011

A brief update.

I lost all the pictures that I took of Jasmine since she was born. Luckily my husband has some of the pictures on his computer, but I am sad.

It is June, but our heater still comes on at night. >.<

This weekend we are going to go to the Valhalla Renaissance Faire.

Monday, May 30, 2011

I hate computers, especially mine

So.... we upgraded from Windows XP to Windows 7 and I think I lost everything. Pictures, essays, writing, work, bookmarks from the internet.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

How to cook seaweed soup (miyeok guk 미역국) redux

So, I went to the local Vietnamese store to look for the seaweed for miyeok guk 미역국, but I didn't find it there. Then last weekend I went to the Korean store in Sparks, NV, Yim's Asian Supermarket. I found the seaweed there and took some pictures with my cell phone, sorry, but they are low quality.

This is the seaweed in Korean, and written in Romanized from the Japanese pronunciation, ito-wakame.

And I believe the black writing here in the center is the Japanese name of the seaweed, I am not 100% sure, so if anyone can read it please let me know.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Updating the windows

It may finally be spring here. I say may, because it hailed last Wednesday. :(

So here is what our first window used to look like.

There are snowflake clings from Wal-Mart, and kirigami leaf decorations. The idea for the leaves came from Zakka Life, I used origami paper.

Here is the second window.

On top we have shape and color clings from Dollar Tree. And on the bottom is an tree idea from Frugal Family Fun Blog that can be found here.

We are currently doing some crafts to update our windows, so hopefully I'll be posting some more pictures soon.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Tracing Lines

I often get a lot of people finding my blog by searching for tracing lines.

So I will now redirect you to, more specifically their handwriting section. They have a great beginning manuscript section.

I hope that helps everyone that needs trace lines.

EDIT: I found another great website for tracing lines, this one allows you to type in your own words, you can also type in words to be traced in cursive.
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