Memoria Press Review by Tammy: Geography I

I received a copy of Memoria Press’ Geography I to review for Sandbox to Socrates. I’ve never used any Memoria Press materials but knew their curriculum to be of excellent quality, so I was excited to see what they offered for beginning geography. Geography I is part of their fourth grade curriculum and includes a review booklet for United States geography which is covered in their third grade program. Geography I retails for $48 and includes a student text, student workbook, and teacher’s manual (as well as the US review books).

 

My son (6th grade) and I have always studied geography in conjunction with history, and I was loathe to change that just for a review. So instead of starting at the front of the book and working our way though, we picked out countries that we had already studied and moved into new countries as they came up in our history. Each region in the student text begins with an overview and is then broken down into individual countries. We covered Ancient History last year, so we did a read-through of the Middle East: The Cradle of Civilization and discussed the map. Then we read the North Africa overview and did the workbook pages on Egypt. We moved on to Europe and read about Greece and Italy, completing those workbook pages. Each country is given a two-page spread and includes History’s Headlines (very distant past) and Tour of Today (more recent past), as well as a Fast Facts section and a map of the country in relation to its region (surrounding countries and geographical features). We moved on to Spain, France, Great Britain, and Germany as we discussed them in our history studies. We were able to connect each country with our history lessons via History’s Headlines and discuss more current events with Tour of Today. This piecemeal approach might not work for every family, but it was a fun change for us.

 

Conclusion: Geography I is a quick and easy way to cover a bit of history and learn a few facts. I like that can be as independent as your learner allows. My son was able to complete the pages himself, allowing me to come back for discussion when convenient. Geography I makes a great jumping-off point for students to delve further into a country of particular interest. It isn’t flashy or colorful, but the content is solid and useful.

Be sure to read what our other reviewers had to say about this and other Memoria Press products.

Disclaimer:  I received a free copy of this product in exchange for my honest review on the Sandbox to Socrates blog. Opinions expressed in this review are the opinions of myself or my family and do not necessarily reflect those of the Sandbox to Socrates blog. I received no compensation for this review, nor was I required to write a positive review. This disclosure is in accordance with the FTC Regulations.

Tammy lives in the desert southwest where antelope play in her front yard, grazing among the rattlers and scorpions. She enjoys reading, scrapbooking, and crochet. She currently  homeschools one son.

Advertisements

Review: Intermediate Language Lessons Level 3/Grade 6, by Tammy

 

My sixth-grade son had just finished two semesters of rigorous writing and grammar study, but I didn’t want him to lose the knowledge he’d gained over the summer. Intermediate Language Lessons Level 3 by Emma Serl seemed like a good way to review without feeling like hard work. Grounded in the Charlotte Mason method of teaching, ILL is gentle, yet thorough, instruction in writing and grammar. Cynthia Albright has reformatted ILL into a printable workbook for the child to write in, instead of copying the entire lesson by hand. For my pencil-phobic boy, this was a godsend.

Intermediate Language Lessons includes nature study, poetry, vocabulary, art study, grammar and usage lessons, and more. The lessons are short but effective. Mrs. Albright has included lined pages to be printed for dictation exercises. Because ILL was originally  printed in the Victorian era, Mrs. Albright has updated the postal codes and state abbreviations in the pertinent places. The one drawback, from my point of view, is that there is no teacher instruction available from the original printing. Mrs. Albright indicates that she is working on one (and has written teacher’s guides for Levels One and Two). When the teacher’s guide for Level 3 is finished, I will gladly buy it.

Like many boys, my son is not a fan of writing. The PDF format is ideal for him because we can print what’s needed – i.e. the dictation pages – and use the other pages on our iPad using the Notability app*. The app allows him to write on the “page” and delete errors, and then leave it for Mom to check. This saves on printer paper and ink, erasers, and frustration.

ILL Part 3 on iPad

Pros:

  • Charlotte Mason method – narration, copywork, dictation, grammar
  • PDF – print all at once or as needed
  • Multi-pronged approach to language arts – nature/art study, grammar, writing

Cons:

  • No teacher guide/answer key for Level 3 — if the parent isn’t familiar with CM-type instruction, this program is more difficult to implement (not impossible; just more difficult)
  • Vintage pictures – my ultra-modern son had to learn to look past the pictures

Verdict: If your heart is drawn to the gentle yet thorough instruction of the Charlotte Mason method, I highly recommend Intermediate Language Lessons Level 3 for sixth grade. This PDF program will be a blessing to your homeschool.

*There are other apps that allow you to annotate a PDF on the iPad. Notability is the one I’m most familiar with.

Disclaimer:  I received a free copy of this product in exchange for my honest review on the Sandbox to Socrates blog. Opinions expressed in this review are my own and do not necessarily reflect those of the Sandbox to Socrates blog. I received no compensation for this review, nor was I required to write a positive review. This disclosure is in accordance with the FTC Regulations.

Tammy lives in the desert southwest where antelope play in her front yard, grazing among the rattlers and scorpions. She enjoys reading, scrapbooking, and crochet. She currently  homeschools one son.