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Topic: Need some input please - 8th grade level

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Subject: Need some input please - 8th grade level
Date Posted: 6/22/2008 10:21 PM ET
Member Since: 5/30/2007
Posts: 77
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I thought I'd check to see if perhaps someone here might be able to make some recommendations for some independent study lesson guides/books for the 8th grade level?  My step-daughter needs to put some effort into reading comprehension, science and math (pre-algebra) this summer.  I did a light bit of research at Amazon but nothing really jumped out at me.

I'd also be open to video/book combinations.  The biggest challenge is that while I am home during the day to generally "supervise" her I can't devote much time and energy into the actual lessons as I actually work my job from home so  I'm looking for independent study workbooks, etc.  I don't expect to find them here at PBS but am hoping someone might be able to point me in the right direction and perhaps recommend some titles.  Specifically, I remember when I was in 8th grade we used a sort of modified reader that came in a kit (or module?).  There was a short story and then comprehension questions at the end of each.  Each kit had maybe 5 or 6 of these.  Does something like this still exist?

I sincerely appreciate your input and time.

~ Trish

Date Posted: 6/23/2008 12:04 PM ET
Member Since: 3/20/2007
Posts: 931
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I would suggest perhaps getting Cosmeo just for the summer.  They have a free, one-month trial that would take care of one of the months.  There are 1000's of streaming media videos on there - most with quizzes.  It also includes Nutshell Math, which, IMO, makes the subscription price worth it.  Nutshell math works students through their math text problems - step by step - and is correlated to most math texts.  There are also links to games, etc.  There is a lot of Discovery Channel content (nice b/c we don't have cable) and many Standard Deviants videos - which my son loves.  We've subscribed for over 3 years and love it.


For science & math, we have Explore Learning.  They have a free, one-month trial also, but I don't think they have a monthly subscription.  We paid $97, instead of $150, for a year through the Homeschool Buyers Co-op.


For reading comprehension, you might see if there are literature teacher guides at your public library.  Our library system includes 200 schools, so in the summer, these are easier to get ahold of since teachers aren't using them.

If she's at a 6th-7th reading level, then you could try out Book Adventure for multiple-choice quizzes based on the books she reads.  It's very similar to Accellerated Reader:


I would ask your librarians for help for other resources.  I know ours has a huge collection of math teaching DVD's.  She could watch movies based on novels after she finishes the book.


Date Posted: 6/23/2008 3:05 PM ET
Member Since: 12/5/2005
Posts: 270
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My daughter is in 8th grade and needed to work on math last year in 7th.  We started using Aleks,  and we are both very happy with it.  She has improved quite rapidly.  We paid for 6 months at a time.

Here is the website for them:  www.Aleks.com

Hope this helps!


Date Posted: 6/23/2008 4:33 PM ET
Member Since: 5/30/2007
Posts: 77
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Thanks so much for the replies and all the time you invested on my behalf!

I guess I should have mentioned that allowing her to use a computer for this exercise is not an option.  Without going into too much detail suffice it to say that the computer is used only for bonafied school projects and the kiddo has to be supervised the entire time.   This is the result of repeated abuse of the computer and a couple of very inappropriate incidents she had involving Myspace. 

As I'm not a true homeschooler (and don't know that I have the patience or talent to become one) and unfortunately can't afford to sit over her all summer, I was hoping to find some good old fashioned books! LOL

I'll check with the library - that was a really good suggestion and so obvious I feel like a bonehead for not thinking of it myself!

Thanks again.