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Friday, April 27, 2012

Inference Jones: A Review

For more than 50 years, The Critical Thinking Company's award-winning products have helped students of all abilities achieve better grades and higher test scores with highly effective lessons that sharpen the mind as they teach standards-based reading, writing, mathematics, science, and history. Their products are fun, easy to use, and guaranteed to produce better grades and higher test scores.

The Critical Thinking Company sent me a e-copy of  Inference Jones to review. This is a 48 page work book with 18 lessons and is available as a hard copy for  $11.99.

From their website:
PhotobucketInference Jones provides short, fun, and easy-to-use activities that improve critical reading and higher order thinking by developing the student’s ability to draw inferences from written text. Research shows inferential reasoning is a prerequisite component to superior reading comprehension. The National Foundation for Educational Research concluded that "the ability to draw inferences predetermines reading skills: that is, poor inferential reasoning causes poor comprehension and not vice versa."

Inference Jones: Beginning has a readability level appropriate for grades 3-4 but can also be used as a remedial resource for older students (grades 5-12+).

Micaiah and I worked through several lessons which comprised of a short story and questions to follow.  Here is an example:

The book was easy to use and didn't take a lot of time to complete.  Micaiah who is in grade 3 had no difficulty working through the lessons independently and while he didn't beg to do them everyday, he didn't mind working on Inference Jones when I asked him to.  I found it to be a solid and usable product and look forward to exploring the many other resources offered by The Critical Thinking Company.

Disclaimer: As a member of TOS Review team I was given a free e-copy of this book in exchange for an honest review (favourable or otherwise).


Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Christian Kids Explore Chemistry: A Review

Bright Ideas Press sent us this e-book and resource CD to review.
This text  is part of their Christian Kids Explore Science series which  cover one year each of Biology, Earth & Space, Chemistry, and Physics.

The Chemistry text includes 5 units which are broken down into 30 lessons and each lesson has 2 parts which you can teach over the week. These texts are multi-grade, the lessons are easy to prepare, and the lessons employ a combination of reading/research and hands-on activities. The material is well organized and written from a biblical world view, infused with scripture through out.

The target grade level is grade 4 to 8 but for the purpose of the review I was very easily able to adapt the lessons for Micaiah and Eli who are in Grade 3 and Grade 1.
learning to interpolate (estimate a measurement)

To me the best part of this package was the resource CD which included lesson plans, activity book printables, supply lists and more.

The cost of the e-book and resource CD is $39.95

All in all this is a good solid curriculum which I would definitely consider incorporating all of the subjects into our home learning environment when the kids are a bit older.

To read more reviews of Christian Kids Explore science titles, please visit the TOS Crew Blog.  

Disclaimer: As a member of TOS Review team I was given this curriculum in exchange for an honest review (favourable or otherwise).


Monday, April 2, 2012

The Empty Tomb!

I was surfing the internet the other day looking for craft ideas for Easter. I love decorating eggs and making flowers, but I wanted something that focused on the death and resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ.  Just as we don't dwell on Santa Claus at Christmas, Easter at our house is not about the Easter bunny and chocolate eggs. When I stumbled upon this picture on this blog, I knew this was a definite project for this year.

Last week we invited over some fellow home learners and had a fun time putting together these mini resurrection gardens.  It was an opportunity to reinforce why we celebrate Easter... the resurrection of Christ, the celebration of eternal life available to those who put their trust in our risen Savior! 

Now we are just waiting for Resurrection Day (... and the grass to grow :)  What are some ways you teach your kids about Resurrection Day?  I'd love to hear your ideas.