I appreciate all the input on homeschooling and math. One thing I have come to learn as a parent is that sometimes we start to second guess ourselves and we feel as though we are screwing up our kids. Thankfully most of the time our kids survive our bumbling parenting. I know that when I was a kid I thought that parents knew it all then I became one and realized that they actually didn't.
When Sarah was in the third grade she was in a self-contained classroom. The school recommended that setting for her. By Christmas we started to think that perhaps that wasn't the best place for her and we had her moved back to the regular classroom with services for the fourth grade. She has always struggled with reading and math, with math being her biggest struggle. For some reason a lot of people with neurofibromatosis struggle with math. When she went into the fourth grade she was given a calculator as one of her accommodations. Funny, when she got to algebra she was able to do that better than simpler math skills. She was able to pass the tests to graduate and went to a local community college. Her SAT scores were low. She took four math classes at the local school (I believe that two were prep classes based on admission testing). After deciding that she did want to do mission work she decided to go to Columbia International University. That school only required one math course and she already had it. She works hard to maintain her 3.0 but she is doing it.
With Larissa the struggle with math is worse than it ever was for Sarah. I put her back into school last year because I thought that they could do better than I could. We had gone back to the beginning in math and finally changed to functional math skills. However, she started the year off on 3rd grade level reading and by Christmas she was on 2nd grade level reading. They weren't able to get any further than I was in math and I suggested that they start working on functional math skills like I had done the year before. Lots of cooking (sometimes we triple recipes around here) and money skills. Once we started doing half days after Christmas her reading scores came back up to where she started the school year at. She is just not able to function at school all day. She was coming home and falling asleep on top of her homework and having seizures.
I have decided that it is time to just give her the calculator and move in another direction. I am not sure what curriculum I should do if going for more functional skills. Math shall be interesting. In reading I am going to start her and Emma off on third grade level together. I talked to Larissa and told her that I expect her to work quickly and get to fourth grade. Perhaps we will do some extra work next summer and try to catch her up again. We will just work at her pace. I don't plan on putting her back in school anytime soon. We need to resolve the seizure issues before I can even think about public school. I am looking at a neurologist in Charleston. That is quite a hike to see someone but I am just not getting any answers here in Columbia.
So now I am searching a different way and looking for functional math skills and how to proceed with using the calculator.