Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Creek Edge Press Task Cards TOS Crew Review 2012

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We are always on the lookout for new Science Curriculum and add ons, Science seems to be one of the boys all time favorite subjects. Recently as part of the TOS Crew we were sent a package that contained items from Creek Edge Press. The boys lately have been rather fascinated with Earth and Space Science so I was so excited when I saw that we were sent our first choice in that category.
    Creek Edge Press has developed Task Cards in various subjects such as Science, Art, Grammar, Music and Social Studies, which includes, History, Geography and Culture. Social Studies was our next choice as that is a favorite of ours as well.  The Task Cards come with a Student/ Teacher guide as well as the set of 10 cards.
    The Philosophy behind the Task Cards is this...

Creek Edge Press Presents: The Task Card Approach

Our goal is to provide a simple tool that pulls together the best of Classical, Charlotte Mason, and Montessori education. We do this with affordable, topic based Task Card Sets that facilitate discovery based, research oriented, independent learning.

The Task Card Sets are non-consumable and are designed for use by multiple grades. Specific books are not indicated in the tasks, making them easy to customize for use within your home. They support the following educational styles:

Classical – The tasks point to key vocabulary that students will use in future years of study. The tasks encourage students to read, think, and respond. The research tasks facilitate a habit of reading for detail, preparing the grammar stage student for work in the dialectic stage.

Charlotte Mason – The tasks rely on narration, in a variety of forms, as a primary means of response to reading and listening. The student encounters meaningful ideas and beautiful expression within the materials chosen for study.

Montessori – The parent prepares a learning environment and the student engages in research tasks indicated on the cards. While the topics on the cards are specific, the tasks are purposely open ended to allow for individual investigation and response at the student's pace.

   The Task Cards are set up with a step by step student led plan of activities and there are other items needed in order for the student to complete the objectives, for instance a Science Dictionary and Thesaurus and a list of books that can be found online through E-Reader catalogs such as Amazon for the Kindle, or you can check many of them out at your local library.

    What I loved about the cards was that they promote independant study and work ethics, something we are really trying to promote this year as the boys get older. Being that they are chronologically in 7th and 8th grades this year we are working hard to have them functioning social and developmentally as their age appropriate peers, something that their Asperger's has always hindered. This year we are doing a work box study approach for many of our daily activities and these Task Cards worked right into our set up. I was also happy to see that the Task Cards are a multi-age learning resource for students grades K-8 so that the boys could work together as well as independently on the same tasks. I love when I find curriculum items that fit this category, with the boys only being 1 grade apart and barely a year in age difference it helps tremendously to do the majority of our school work together and it helps school flow when we are all on the same page.
  In addition to working on independent and group work ( the boys working together to complete a task), we have also been focusing more on independant research projects and essay papers. The Creek Edge Press Task Cards were wonderful in lending a hand in that direction.
The Task Cards are set up in a form that gives the boys bullet pointed tasks which is great for all kids but especially kids with special needs. I think I may laminate our Task Cards so they can check off each item with a wipe off marker as they complete the steps. The boys work better when they can visual separate what has been completed and what still needs to be accomplished.

   Another trait of the Task Cards that I like is that all of the components are non consumable so not only can we use them again but I can share with my good friends that homeschool as well. I love being able to share my homeschool resources with friends, it is a great feeling to bless others after you have been blessed by a stellar product.
  Be sure to check out the gallery at Creek Edge Press for more images of the vast array of Task Cards they offer to homeschoolers. Also there is a FAQ that goes into more deep discussions on the hows and whys of the Task Cards. You can purchase your Task Cards for $18.00 and up per topic or the whole set of a Subject like Science for $65 and higher. There are other areas worth checking out on the Creek Edge Press Website, like testimonials and the About Us pages. There are also some great articles written about the Task Card approach.  Be sure to take the time to stop by the blogs of my fellow TOS Crew Mates to hear all the details of which Task Cards their families were blessed in receiving. Each of us got to chose which ones we felt would be the best fit for our family. So there are many choices to read about.

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