Development of EP’s new site is well under way. It’s main purpose will be to enable you to customize your child’s level. There will be no more first, second, third… You will choose your child’s courses, and each day’s assignments will be displayed all on one page for your child. (This also means there will be no more “years.” You will just choose ancient history, for example, and it will show up with the your child’s math and English and everything else.)
Since we will have more control over our children’s levels, I decided to take advantage of that and split English into two separate courses, Reading and Language Arts. I haven’t finished yet, but I am hoping to be finished within the next week or two. Reading and Language Arts 1-4 are on the site now, and I will continue through English 7. English 8 and the other high school level English courses will remain intact.
A new course called “Learn to Read” has also been added. This is just the reading program separated out from the Getting Ready levels (preschool and kindergarten). If you have an older student learning to read, this course is for you!
What will be affected by the new courses?
- If you are currently just using one of the levels, this doesn’t affect you.
- If you are using the English page separately, you are going to have to switch to the reading and language arts pages because the English pages will come down. (You could print the English page you are on, but the links will not be updated if there’s ever a problem.)
- If you are using Getting Ready 1 or Getting Ready 2 (on the new site they will just be called preschool and kindergarten), then you do NOT need to use the Learn to Read course. It’s already included in your child’s assignments.
- I tried to carefully comb the English assignments for things that would be out of place if the courses are not used together, but I kept almost all of the assignments the same. For instance, many times the writing prompt relates to what the reading assignment is for that level. I just took out mentions of the book but left the prompt. Your child can write about a time he was surprised even if he’s not reading the chapter that inspired the prompt.
- Sometimes in English I only had reading assignments and sometimes I only had writing, so there were times I had to add in extra assignments on the new course pages. That means the courses are different in little ways from the current English courses. Going through the assignments, I was able to edit them some, add in some more practice, and add in more high fives and hugs!
- Realize that if you are mixing and matching reading and language arts levels that maybe you’ll end up with some short days or some longer days. I can’t compare every possible reading and language arts level combination to make sure they don’t have two quick things or two involved things on one day. I was thoughtful of it as I edited the lessons, but it could happen.
- I’m aware that this could create a gap for a child. For instance, they could be starting reading 6 as they finish language arts 7, so they aren’t ready for the reading in 8th where the language arts and reading aren’t separated. I am thinking about how to approach this. My plan is to make “intermediate” reading and language arts courses that will be generic and be able to used over a couple of years if necessary. There will be a reading list with general directions for daily work. Language arts would be daily writing with a daily activity such as vocabulary from a site where they can keep moving forward on their own. Grammar activities will only be review.
If you are happy with your level, please keep using it! That’s the easiest way to use the site. For those who think their child would do better on separate reading and language arts courses, take a look at the pages and read the course descriptions. I also created a guide for deciding on your child’s level. NOTE! This is just a guide. For instance, if you think that a certain level is right, but your child doesn’t know his parts of speech, then just use that level and teach him the parts of speech on the side.
These guides are also on the FAQ page and the How to Use page.
(If you go to those pages, you’ll see there’s a math placement guide as well.)
Hopefully you can see how the new site will be great for piecing together the just-right level for your child and make using varying levels Easy Peasy!