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Simply written instructions are tailored for independent learners; at the beginning of each unit, an overview, list of lessons, and list of additional books needed are provided. Lessons may be read aloud, or alone. Four to six activities are provided at the end of each lesson, which parents may choose assignments from; each takes approximately 45-90 minutes, and students are not expected to complete all of them. Activities often cover thinking biblically, vocabulary, creative writing, or activities in Maps of America the Beautiful Timeline of America the Beautiful, We the People Student Workbook, or the (sold-separately) Lesson Review books. One special family activity is assigned per week, including arts and crafts, recipes, and multi-age projects.
We the People is a rich collection of letters, documents, speeches, songs, poems, stories, memoirs, and articles written as American history unfolded. Documents are not in chronological order; they are indexed by title, author, and chronological order, however. Features the thoughts and words of Lewis and Clark, the Wright Brothers, Benjamin Franklin, and others.
Maps of America the Beautifulasks students to identify and mark locations on maps that examine history (World War II, Lewis & Clark) and places of cultural importance (landmarks across the US, the National Mall), as well as simple geography (the islands of Hawaii).
Timeline of America the Beautiful is designed to be used with the texts; they often provide an assignment to be completed in this book. Simply turn to the assigned year, and find the blank with the correct lesson number noted. Students copy the assigned statement in the blank, and may color in the illustration if desired.
The answer key provides line-listed answers for the America the Beautiful Student Workbook, Timeline of America the Beautiful, America the Beautiful Lesson Review, and the vocabulary questions at the end of the textbook chapters. Answers are organized by book, and then lesson number.
This kit includes:
- America the Beautiful Book 1, 439 pages, hardcover; black and white and color illustrations and photographs are included.
- America the Beautiful Book 2; Continuing from Book 1, it contains pages 439-1007. hardcover; black and white and color illustrations and photographs are included.
- We the People, 220 pages, hardcover.
- Maps of America the Beautiful; non-reproducible.
- Timeline of America the Beautiful
- America the Beautiful Answer Key, Stapled binding, paperback.
Vendor: Notgrass Company
Publication Date: 2011
Availability: In Stock
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Exploring America, Updated Edition -- Curriculum PackageRay NotgrassNotgrass Company / 2014 / Other$99.955 Stars Out Of 5 3 ReviewsAvailability: In StockCBD Stock No: WW990695
Homeschool Specialists' Review
P.S. This curriculum also offers two workbooks that are sold separately. The Lesson Review provides daily review questions and weekly tests to help the student retain the information. The Student Workbook includes fill-in-the-blank activities, drawing, and other handwork sheets.
VeteranMomColoradoAge: 35-44Gender: female5 Stars Out Of 5I've used this over 2 yearsDecember 29, 2014VeteranMomColoradoAge: 35-44Gender: femaleQuality: 5Value: 5Meets Expectations: 5This has been a favorite with my kids. We did part 1 last year and are using part 2 this year. I have added a variety of books as supplements (Civil War for Kids, Industrial Revolution for Kids, Mr Lincoln's High Tech War, Six Days in October, Team Moon, etc). I like to use non-fiction books, too, and use this history text as my spine.
AngelAge: 35-44Gender: female5 Stars Out Of 5We love America the Beautiful!September 5, 2014AngelAge: 35-44Gender: femaleQuality: 5Value: 5Meets Expectations: 5A great overview of American History with just the right depth for middle schoolers!
Marge5 Stars Out Of 5History that is engaging and easy to understandAugust 9, 2014MargeWe love America the Beautiful. It was full of so much information and great project ideas that I broke it down into 2 years - 1st book 4th grade and 2nd book for 5th grade. We would spend a week on 1 unit and then read books about the topic the next week. It made it very enjoyable for us and could spend extra time on subjects we wanted to explore further. I highly recommend it.
micah68Age: 35-44Gender: female3 Stars Out Of 5Would recommend, with a couple concernsApril 7, 2014micah68Age: 35-44Gender: femaleQuality: 5Value: 3Meets Expectations: 4I purchased this set to use while homeschooling my daughter who is in 6th grade.
The Pros: -The books are beautiful and very user friendly.
A strong background in American History is not necessary in order to effectively use/teach this set. We love the timeline and maps book. The student activity book has been a big help as well. This book COULD also be used as a geography course as well, if you are willing to expand a bit on the portions that cover geographic features. The books are from a Christian perspective.
The Cons: The author has covered a LOT of material in this
two volume set so some of the topics and time periods covered are not very in depth. (The information could be considered 'an inch deep and a mile wide'.) For example, the Revolutionary War period only covers a dozen pages, the events leading up to the Revolutionary War covers only a few pages. The French and Indian War gets only a paragraph or so. If you are not interested in teaching culture or geography, you might be frustrated by the units that cover only these topics.
Overall - I would recommend this set to a homeschooling parent who might have limited knowledge of US History, yet wants to 'jump in' to a curriculum that lets them begin to start teaching and learning right away. The set HITS on all key areas of US History, in my opinion, which was a huge help to me. This gave us a good reference of a timeline of events, and key people and places in America. However, since the author only touches on these key areas, I recommend being prepared to source additional information. I found that my daughter didn't understand or remember significant details because they weren't given enough attention in this curriculum. I had to pause our lessons for a week while I researched events (such as the Boston Tea Party etc.) so that she could have a better understanding. This curriculum however, made it easy to do this. If you are going to spend extra time teaching these events, (which I recommend doing) you may find that you need two or even three years to cover the material. I plan on using this curriculum set from 6th-8th grade.
BluebonnetTexas4 Stars Out Of 5Good, but too much for one school yearJanuary 23, 2014BluebonnetTexasQuality: 5Value: 4Meets Expectations: 4I have used this curriculum for half a school year with my 5th and 8th grade boys. I like that they can both study the same thing. The student workbook is perfect for my younger one, and the lesson review is great for my older one. The map book is helpful, as well, and we've done most of the weekly family activities and read about half of the extra books suggested to this point.
My issue at this point is that it has just been too much information. We spent maybe 2 days on the revolutionary war and only one week on the civil war. Some days we covered 3 or 4 presidencies in just one lesson! If I was able to do it over, I would split this book into two years, much like the public school system where I live approaches US history. This way we would have time to complete almost all of the suggested activities. Many of them were excellent - we just didn't have time to get them done. My plan now is to hold off on the second half, go back and spend more time on topics up to the civil war that my boys are interested in, read some good historical fiction, and talk about current events.
Q: 1 or 2 years? Is the full curriculum package intended to cover 1 or 2 years of middle school history?
This is designed to cover one-year of American history, geography, and literature.
Q: How necessary are all the 'extras' in the package?
All of the items in the curriculum package are essential to the program. Optional items, which help measure your students understanding of the curriculum, are the Student Workbook (WW668952), designed for 5th- and 6th-graders, and the Lesson Review book (WW668537), designed for 7th- and 8th-graders.
Q: Which of the items need to be purchased for an additional student? I'm sure some of these book can be used by both students. ...which ones cannot? Thanks!
For use with additional students you will need extra copies of the Timeline (WW668846) and Maps (WW668627). You might also want to purchase either the Student Workbook (WW668952) or Lesson Review Book (WW668537), which are not included in the kit, for each student.
Q: can younger kids use this My daughter will be in 4th grade next year. She reads at an advanced level and enjoys history. Could this curriculum be used with a fourth grader or would it be to advanced?
This curriculum is designed for Middle School, Grades 5-8 (Ages 10-14). We recommend viewing the sample pages available for the kit and the individual items to see if this curriculum would work with your daughter.