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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
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.
SonyAge: 25-34Gender: female2 Stars Out Of 5More depth please!May 19, 2017SonyAge: 25-34Gender: femaleQuality: 0Value: 0Meets Expectations: 0So we've been using this curriculum for an entire school year now. In a word, the author is fond of lists. We just got done reading the section on the Appalachian Mountains. It lists all the animals that can be found there. Then it lists all the plants. Then it lists all the smaller ranges of note. etc. etc. A week ago, we did the Revolutionary War. It listed the dates and what happened on them....but what about the WHY of what made those dates so important? I have a very hard time keeping my kid's attention with this curriculum, which has resulted to supplementing A LOT with movies, internet pictures, and other resources to keep us chugging along.
Things I do like: The Map book...Since it's not always easy to have a map out when discussing certain events, it's helpful for the students to go back and find the places themselves and get a broader idea of geography. The suggested fictional literature has been enjoyable. Also, my kids enjoy some of the suggested family projects that they have (for example, we made and played marbles the other day), and a lot of these I would have never thought to do on my own.
However we purchased both the Student Workbook and the Lesson Review. The Workbook can be dismissed as busy work (though my kids like the excuse of getting to do crossword puzzles and the like). The Review questions are of the nature of simply finding the answer in the text and "filling in the blank." For instance, it asked "Who convinced the French to support America in the war" (Ben Franklin), but in no way does it talk or ask about why this was important (in the very least, because America was quickly running out of money and needed outside support in order to progress with their war for independence. However, France had been on iffy terms with the British for a long time so they were hesitant to get involved in ANOTHER fight...especially one they might not win!!).
I continuously have thoughts about switching curriculum, but its so hard after we've come this far already (and after the money has already been spent).
Dorothy5 Stars Out Of 5America the BeautifulSeptember 8, 2016DorothyQuality: 0Value: 0Meets Expectations: 0My son really loves this curriculum!
Kelsy5 Stars Out Of 5Amazing American HistoryMarch 4, 2016KelsyQuality: 0Value: 0Meets Expectations: 0I am using ATB with my kids, ages 6, 8, 11 & 12 this year. We are taking it slow and will be using it for two years, so we're currently only on Lesson 50. But the kids all love it and so do I.
I knew this would be the curriculum for me when I read the "Some Reminders So You Will Not Feel Overwhelmed" section on page xiv. "God does not expect you to do more than you can do. Be kind to yourself. He knows exactly what you and your children need this year." Mrs. Notgrass goes on to encourage homeschoolers, including me, to "rejoice and be glad" in what God has given us. I'm not gonna lie, it made me cry tears of relief.
And using ATB has been fantastic for our family. For me, the mom/teacher, I love that the plans are all laid out in each chapter for me. I don't need a separate teacher's addition. We pick and choose what we do for each lesson, sometimes using the ideas for creative writing, vocabulary and the other suggested activities. As of right now, we have but are not using the timeline book. My kids don't really seem to need it. Of the suggested activities, we almost always read the literature but my kids have not enjoyed "We the People." I think it's a great resource, but because it's often written in the 200 year old vernacular, they've struggled to understand it. We usually do the creative writing and vocabulary assignments. They seem very age appropriate for my two oldest kids.
We also always do the maps. Everyone but the 6 year old has a map book. Initially, I hadn't purchased any books for my 8 year old, thinking he would just listen in, but surprisingly, he saw the other kids using the map book and the crosswords in the red student book and insisted I buy them for him. He's been a bit of a reluctant reader, so this was huge for him. He has completed each assignment with gusto and it has improved his reading to have to use that skill to answer the questions. As the mom, I love these books! They reinforce and explain the lessons so well! They are one of the best aspects of ATB. Do not skip these books! They are, in my opinion, essential to the student's understanding of the lessons.
I ordered both the blue and red books for my 11 & 12 year olds, as they are in 5th & 6th grades. Like I mentioned before, I did not initially get any books for my 8 year old 3rd grader. The red book is really too easy for the older kids but just right for the 8 year old. I have them do both because I bought both books and it doesn't take very long to do.
Our favorite parts are the read alouds. We've read the first three and even my 6 year old is engaged every single time. We are between books right now and he just asked me when we could start the next book. When I told him it would be a week or two, he was very disappointed.
In all, I love ATB. I love being able to pick and choose the parts that work for our family, the emphasis and Christianity and the easy layout of the lessons. It's a curriculum our whole family enjoys. I highly recommend it.
Cali Teachermum 10yrs +5 Stars Out Of 5Enjoyable & Lots of subjects 'done-in-one'September 3, 2015Cali Teachermum 10yrs +Quality: 5Value: 5Meets Expectations: 5Not only did my "History is Boring" son LOVE this but we have done 3 years of Notgrass History now, and he is still loving it! The activities are great and super flexible. Not all appeal to us but that's ok we pick and choose with no reorganizing required. Work can be virtually independent or very interactive with the parent depending on how you want to do things - no planning necessary. Also, thanks to Notgrass we knocked out History, Bible, Literature, Writing, Vocabulary/Spelling, Geography, Culture and Social Studies and even had Art or Home Economics activity each week - all in one set! No work on my part, no planning required, it's all just there! Optional Workbook pages are fun and varied and Review pages are straightforward question and answers so take your pick and both have unit tests included for the bean counters. Buy their literature set and always be sure to get the best version of the books or borrow from the library either way all are readily available. Reading selections are good and interesting reads (even if my son thinks one or two were rather "girly") Nothing about this material is complicated either! Just follow the textbook... pick and choose how many/which activities you use (handy separate lesson assignment checklist is available at no cost to make day to day tracking easier) then add review &/or workbook when you want, and voila... easy as pie! Honestly the best written, best looking, best organized and by far easiest to use curriculum I have ever had the pleasure to employ.
Melissa Stanek5 Stars Out Of 5Fun History!!September 2, 2015Melissa StanekQuality: 4Value: 4Meets Expectations: 5This History is a great start to learning US History. I am so thankful for the combination of Bible, History, and Lit it provides. My children have done most of the work on there own. They have enjoyed the different workbooks, Maps, lesson reviews, and the Student workbook. We have continued to use Notgrass in High School as well.
Ask a Question▼▲
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.
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