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Topic: Any KONOS users here?

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Subject: Any KONOS users here?
Date Posted: 1/14/2008 10:11 PM ET
Member Since: 7/12/2007
Posts: 137
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Is there anyone around here who is using KONOS? It seems that people who use it really love it, but I'd like some idea about what it's really like on a day to day basis. We've been using Sonlight (mostly) this year, but now that we've finished the holidays and we're back into it, I'm starting to re-evaluate and decide if this is the way I want to go next year or not. I thought my daughter would love all the reading and books, because she reads all the time, but I'm finding that many times during homeschool I have to tell her to focus, pay attention, turn back around, etc etc.  I know she's "getting it" most of the time, but maybe my kid is more of a kinesthetic learner than I originally thought... either that or she's just a typical six year old. I don't know..

What I do know is that at the curriculum fair last summer, I spent a lot of time at the KONOS booth, but I decided it all looked way too overwhelming for a crafts-challenged, and unfortunately not very creative, person like myself. At least for my first year of official hs'ing. Now that I've got some time in the trenches under my belt, I'm starting to see what works and doesn't work, and I've found that my kid's favorite time is when we do science experiments. The hands-on stuff. Sigh. She still loves the reading time, at least the read aloud time when we are reading good classic books, but I'm seeing a lot of zoning out when we are going through other subjects and there is nothing active going on.

On top of that, I have an active three year old who really wants to be more a part of our homeschool time...which is why I've again thought about KONOS.  Perhaps *I'm* the one who is the auditory/visual learner, and I've been hoping my kids would just follow suit?

Sorry for the long post. I'm just trying to do a little mid-year evaluation. I tried a very casual preK program with her that dictated lots of crafts, kitchen activities, and such, and I found I just didn't have the energy to get all the stuff together to do many of them. So as cool and interactive as KONOS looks, I'm afraid of shortchanging my kids' education because I can't get it together.

Any thoughts?

Thanks,

Debby

Date Posted: 1/15/2008 9:28 AM ET
Member Since: 12/5/2005
Posts: 270
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Hey Debby,

Congratulattions on making it through your first year of hs!! :-)

We started with KONOS for the reason I have a five year gap between my kids and I wanted to try and teach the same thing.  Our first year was a killer for me!  The day to day was hard alot of times we didn't finish what they recommend and I felt like a unit that would take 5 weeks was going to take 10 instead and by the time we were finished the kids never wanted to hear about senses let alone do them a few years down the road.

But after our first year I sat down and re=evaluated and decided I liked the concept it was just the time frame and all consuming activities.  I would dream activities at night, for me it was bad! lol  But what I did was I broke the unit studies up into easy time periods for us.  Maybe only a week or two at the most  just to give them some information but not enough that they never want to study that subject again.

We have now been using this concept for about three years and I love, the kids love it and we enjoy it much more!

Hope this helps some

Date Posted: 1/15/2008 5:53 PM ET
Member Since: 7/12/2007
Posts: 137
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Thanks! :)

I'm just trying to figure out if it will fit with me. I think -- no, I'm pretty sure -- that my kids would really love the unit study concept. I just don't know if I can get my act together enough to do it; to get all the books, supplies and such together, and just get off my own duff to participate. I'm much more of a "let's snuggle down and read some good books" kinda gal. :-) Maybe I should try out a short-term, one or two week unit study this summer to see how it works in reality.. Hmm...

Subject: Try Konos in a box
Date Posted: 1/15/2008 7:33 PM ET
Member Since: 10/5/2007
Posts: 23
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I'm right there with you, but we did ours backwords - we tried out Konos and are now with Sonlight. My kids loved Konos. It is fabulous for kids 6-12yrs. The problem is just what you said - it is so craft heavy and very very demanding on your time. We just couldn't get enough done. BUT we did do Konos in a Box (Obedience) and it was wonderful. All the books, craft supplies etc are right there and so easy. If you want to give Konos a try that is the way I would go. I think there are 3 or 4 Boxes to choose from and I think they are supposed to cover 1/2 a year.

HTH

Date Posted: 1/20/2008 9:43 PM ET
Member Since: 9/24/2007
Posts: 52
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We have used Konos and Sonlight and Weaver at different times.  They are all reading based programs.  We liked the konos.  We do ours on our own schedule and like unit studies.  We may hit one area the kids are not so interested in and we hit the facts and move on.  The next one they may love and it may lead to something else and something else.  So, we just use the idea of time needed loosely.   I give each unit to the children and they take it from there and I supervise.  They look at it and decide if they want the recommended books or if they want to look for alternates and then we deal with what activities to add.  It's got to be fun to them or you have to use force and that is way to tiring!!  You take the joy out of learning and you are headed for burnout.  It's actually fun watching them take on each unit. Little do they know,  they learn while getting ready to learn.  They share the decisions and they learn from each other as well.  I think I have learned as much as they have maybe more since we started homeschooling...   I have older children though and with one that's 6 you would have to participate more in the planning.  Making decisions is tough though and my children are learning that too as they learn other educational things.  That balance is the great thing about homeschooling.   I've seen units I looked at with dread and figured we would go thru quickly and the children see it different and when I see it thru their eyes it is and in the end we may spend more time on that unit.  That's the real fun.  So, ask your daughter to help and adapt it for both of you and you'll find playing and learning are great and you get to know parts of your child you would have missed.   I started off trying to teach and we had a rough year or two then we all started learning together and wow!!!  My twins start college in the fall and they are so excited .   I hated school did just what I had to to get out and in the fall I am going to college too.  I learned the joy of learning myself and that is what it's all about.  We will be attending different colleges but we are all very excited.   My 11 year old says she will be taking college classes too because she will be helping me and she's probably right... 

Subject: It isn't my staple...
Date Posted: 1/21/2008 4:28 PM ET
Member Since: 5/28/2007
Posts: 308
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But, I use Konos from time to time.

It started as my core, but we don't have a great library and I'm too lazy and short sighted to use inter-library loan much.  I began tweaking more and more...   

You shouldn't worry about not being able to get it together.  It is easy to tweak.  And remember you DON'T have to do EVERYTHING that is listed.  You can add or subtract things at your leisure.

The kids love it though.  They still talk about some of the activities we've done.  For hands-on kids I'm not sure this can be beat.  That being said, it is parent intensive.

We still do units from it, it IS fun.  But it is no longer my core.

Happy to answer specific questions about it though.

_Erica

Date Posted: 4/30/2008 5:33 PM ET
Member Since: 2/2/2007
Posts: 4,588
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Digging up this old thread b/c we are considering using KONOS next year.

I was wondering, for those who used it, did you do it on your own or with another family? Some people said they were overwhelmed with it and I'm wondering if it would be better to do with another family or families. I have 3-4 homeschool moms in my neighborhood that are curious but not sold on the idea.

I really think if we got together and did it, it would be ok.

Another question, if we did the co-op approach, how often do you think we would need to meet to accomplish things? Would one day a week suffice?

I'm really interested but I hate to buy it and then it would be too much (in terms of crafts, experiments and extras like that).

thanks

 

Date Posted: 5/3/2008 7:59 PM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2006
Posts: 181
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Hi, I just spoke to my friend who used KONOS all year this year. I read her these emails and asked what she would say. She thought KONOS would be great but is abandoning it. She used the yellow book and also did buy one 'konos in a box'. She has twins in first grade who are kinesthetic learners. The reason she is stopping is she was spending 10 hours every week on lesson planning plus the time to go to the library to borrow books. She feels that the book and the 'in a box' did not give lesson plans. She also felt they give no guildelines to say how deep or shallow to go with the studies, such as what is appropratie to know for elem. grades for The Oregon Trail (how much is enough). In the 'in a box' they had a lot of writing reports for middle school and high school which didn't apply to her kids. She said she surfed the web to try to find a scope and sequence and other ideas for teaching beyond the read aloud's and the crafts. She felt the program tried to be all things to parents who are teaching a span of kids but just does not do enough with laying out lesson plans.

 

She also said it was good for a co-op. She did a co-op with one other family where they did a full day switch-off once per week. In other words the other mom had her kids one full day and she had theirs another day and they did KONOS together.

My friend started using Story of the World Volume 1 about six weeks ago (at my recommendation). Today she told me how much she loves it and that she hadn't understood that it is not just history but also geography and literature. She said she likes SOTW because it is clearly for elem. school kids. The crafts and hand's on stuff is there and you can do as little or a lot, whatever you want. It is conveniently laid out with the lesson plans (in the related Curriculum Guide and Activity Book).  So she has changed over to using SOTW and then doing other subjects with other curriculums  in more of a 'build your own classical curriculum' method as is laid out in 'The Well Trained Mind'.

Regarding the part in the first post about the 6 year old who has to be told to pay attention while reading or wants to move I say this. Just because a child moves doesn't mean they are not listening. Both of my boys can play while I read aloud and they listen and retain the information. One likes to do jigsaw puzzles. The other prefers to make things out of LEGOs. We use oral narration after so I do know they did listen. Some kids especially those who are kinesthetic learniners might actually hear less if they are forced to sit still. Some kids like to jump on a little indoor trampoline or sit ona balance ball or move around in other way.s

 

Good luck everyone!

 

 

Subject: Love this post!!!
Date Posted: 7/15/2010 4:48 PM ET
Member Since: 7/15/2010
Posts: 1
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I just finished read your post!!!  I'm interested in knowing if you ever ending up using Konos???  Do you and the kids enjoy it???

I have a four year old daugther and a three year old son and I'm also considering using Konos started this fall would love your opinoins on it!

I can totally relate to your post because I'm more of a "let's sit and read some books" mom but I'm pretty sure my kids are hands on learners.

Thanks,

Brenda