Learning Support classes are online classes that meet once or twice a week for about an hour. A MODG teacher leads discussions, presents materials, and helps students come to a better understanding of the materials. The student has an opportunity to discuss the material in the classes and ask questions. We have found that not only are the classes a great way to learn the material, but it is also a great opportunity for the students to get together with other students around the country to discuss common interests and develop friendships.
We know that the parents are responsible for the education of their children. We expect that a parent will be very involved in the student's learning and know that what we do in the conference calls can only be successful if the parent is actively involved. We think that the Learning Support classes are an excellent tool to assist the parents in the education of their children.
Learning Support, like many of the other services we offer, was developed at the request of our families. Several years ago, some of the students approached one of our teachers to see if she could co-ordinate a history discussion class. They wanted to discuss with their peers the material they were reading. The idea appealed to the teacher; she is a firm believer in the discussion method of learning. Our Teacher Services are excellent in helping students understand the material, organize their thoughts and convey them well in writing. The MODG program itself, because of the materials chosen and the method employed, helps form the ideas in the student's minds. The Learning Support classes are another way to enhance the development of the student's intellectual ability. Discussion is a key to our program; defending and presenting opinions in class help the students love learning and improve their written work, because they come to an understanding of the different positions first through the spoken word. We welcome any parent to sit in on the classes that her (or his) students are doing with us. (Please check with us about how this may be done.) It is our hope that discussions in the class encourage the students and parents to continue the discussion together after class.
Ed graduated from the University of Nebraska, Omaha in 2010 on a full tuition, 5 year Regent scholarship. He earned a double degree—International Studies with East Asia emphasis and International Studies with Business emphasis—along with a minor in Japanese (the most he could get at UNO) and his Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) certification. Ed was inducted into several honor societies, most notably Omicron Delta Kappa, National Leadership Honor Society and Sigma Iota Rho, Honor Society for International Studies. He received a tuition waiver to study in Japan for one school year (his junior year). Ed is part of the Japanese Exchange and Teaching (JET) program and currently teaching English as an Assistant Language Teacher (ALT) in three schools in the Hiroshima area. He also is doing some volunteer work translating into English some eyewitness accounts of the bombing of Hiroshima.
Learning Support Courses include paper grading. While the benefits of discussion, as well as presenting and teaching concepts as they came up in the syllabus was the originally intended service, additional benefits became apparent after we started actually teaching the classes. Classes provide additional accountability and keep students on track. When grading work, the teacher can immediately see when there is a problem in understanding and address it within a few days. For that reason, in most classes we encourage the students to submit work for grading.
The camaraderie that develops between the students in the class is also a benefit. It helps the students feel that they are part of a class in a school. Also, we have found that Latin is a subject for which many parents want additional help. The classes provide parents with that support. The result of this system is clear; more students are taking Latin, enjoying it, and continuing with it in later years.
More teaching time, accountability, structure, group discussion and camaraderie are the benefits of Learning Support. Students must move at a regular pace and meet deadlines. Small class size allows teachers to pay attention to individual students, but do so in a group setting. Class size is limited to ensure maximum benefit to students (see below for more information). Some classes like Art Appreciation, Music Appreciation and Story Hours provide opportunities for students to participate in an activity without any homework or prep time on the part of the parent. Students simply need to show up to class. Teachers are available for questions outside of class as well. It is our intention that the Learning Support classes will facilitate discussion in your home, and enhance your child's learning experience without replacing you as the primary teacher.
We hope anyone would benefit from these classes! However, students who may need to go at a slower pace than the syllabus due to real learning issues with concepts may want to consider using our Teacher Services and taking courses at the Directed or Enhanced Directed level in lieu of these classes.
Learning Support classes meet on a regular basis. Classes are conducted weekly (or twice weekly) via the online conference program, Adobe Connect. Adobe Connect provides a virtual classroom which requires a computer, headset and high speed internet connection. Please see www.modgclasses.com for additional information. The link to the virtual classroom is posted to the families' site, once the student is assigned to a section. In class, the students work on new concepts with the teacher and review previous concepts, employing the discussion method. Students receive approximately one hour per week of class teaching. Students do not have personal one-on-one calls with their teacher as a general rule.
Grades are given based upon papers, tests and quizzes submitted. The teacher will notify parents of student grade status 2-4 times a year. (Parents are always welcome to ask more often for updates.) Assignments will be graded either the Learning Support teacher, or a grader who works with the entire class section. While paper grading is covered in the cost of the course, parents may choose to have their student not use the grading portion of the course. Except for religion courses there will be no difference in price for audited classes. Religion courses and grade school Discussion Book Clubs are offered either as a discussion only class, or as a class with grading and there is a corresponding price difference for those courses.
In summary, Religion and Discussion Book Club Learning Support Classes have options. You can sign up for grading in these courses or not. If you chose the grading option, your student's papers will be corrected by the teacher grading his section's work. If you chose the discussion only option, grading is not included. So you are free to utilize any other resources for grading such as local teachers or our Teacher Services. All other Learning Support Classes do include grading and the student should not sign up for those courses in Teacher Services.
Hear from Our Families:
“Thank you for all your help. Special Services has brought back the joy of home schooling”Sue
from survey on Special Service program