One thing we haven’t really focused too much on during the past couple of years is grammar. You know: nouns, adjectives, commas, phrases, and the like. We figure that as much reading as the girls do, they will pick up on a lot of it by osmosis, or whatever you call it when it comes naturally from being absorbed in good books. And what they don’t pick up on, well, it will be much easier to teach when their brains have been absorbing a lot of it from reading all those books they do. When we were offered the opportunity to review Editor in Chief Level 1 for The Critical Thinking Co., we figured that it was perhaps a very good time to find out just how much absorbing E had done.
Editor in Chief Level 1 is a printed book designed with approximately fourth and fifth graders in mind. It is not a stand alone grammar curriculum. It is definitely more of a supplement or a refresher course.
Editor in Chief, or EIC as we call it around here, has 12 lesson areas. These range from content that comes fairly easily to a 5th grader to things that are a bit more difficult to grasp. These lessons include: finding content errors, capitalization, punctuation, applying spelling rules, nouns and all the variations, pronouns and appropriate usage, adjectives, adverbs, articles, verbs, agreement, conjunctions, prepositions, interjections, confusing word pairs, negative words, homophones, homographs, run-on sentences, and sentence fragments. That is a lot of information packed into this book.
Each lesson begins with the rules or content that is being reviewed and how to apply it in context. It has examples of both how it should look and how it should not. This instruction is followed by several pages of passages that contain errors to identify in whatever area the lesson focus is. Each page includes an optional section for rewriting the passage with the errors corrected.
We would review each and every example in the instructional pages, talking about why it is used and applied. Then, E would do between 2 and 4 pages of activity work, depending on her schedule for the day. This is something that can vary by individual. You could do one page a day and spread this out over 13 or 14 weeks. You could do all of the application pages for a lesson at once and finish the book in 12 days. It really depends on the student and teacher. As I said, we completed between 2 and 4 pages each day. We chose to have her copy in correct form only one of the passages she marked up for each lesson. After we have been done with it for a few weeks, we are going to go through it all again because there is so much packed in these pages.
We have really enjoyed Editor in Chief Level 1. It has been a challenge that we did not expect. But that was a fun thing for us. I enjoy editing and I found that this challenged me, as well. There were several “rules” in the various areas that I found out I was using incorrectly. As the instructor, I learned a lot. And, I was VERY thankful to have the answer documents at the back of the book! We had to use them on just about every passage because some of those errors were tricky little things to find.
One huge bonus to note with EIC is the copyright policy. The Critical Thinking Company is extremely generous in their policy. The copyright notice in the front of the Editor in Chief book reads that the book can be copied, up to 35 copies of each page for one home or one classroom per year. This is not only a good thing for homeschoolers, but any teacher out there will get their money’s worth from this product.
The Critical Thinking Company asked the Review Crew to review several different products and I can’t wait to read the reviews for the other products. Those products include:
Alphabet Song Game (Windows software download) (Gr. Toddler – 1)
Math Analogies Beginning (Windows software download) (Gr. K-1)
Math Analogies Level 1 (Windows software download) (Gr. 2-3)
Math Analogies Level 2 (Windows software download) (Gr. 4-5)
Editor in Chief Level 1 (physical book) (Gr. 4-5)
Editor in Chief Level 2 (physical book) (Gr. 6-8)
Pattern Explorer (physical book) (Gr. 5-7)
World History Detective Book 1 (physical book) (Gr.6-12+)
I encourage you to check out all that The Critical Thinking Co. has to offer. I know we are looking closely at ordering several more items from them very soon.
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