Monday, July 23, 2012

Knowledge Quest: Map Trek 6 E-Book Set TOS Crew Review 2012

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 History was never my strong suit in school when I was a child, either was Geography. I was good at it at the time but made no bones about needing it in real life. Boy was I wrong and I really wish I would have payed more attention in school. What I did not realize as a kid was that the two subjects truly go hand in hand. I have been struggling to teach these two subjects to my boys in a way that they will love to learn it and retain the information for all of life's purpose. This really is important stuff and I want them to know it. We use a primary curriculum that dives deeply into maps and timelines but I do not think they are taught in a way that makes it fun to learn and will make my boys want to remember the topics we cover sometimes.

    Schoolhouse Review Crew members were given the opportunity to review some material that may help with the issue at hand. We were given the choice of 2 products from Knowledge Quest, now my hardest decision was picking the one we would use the most, I really wanted both, but that was not an option, so I picked one and then wrote comments to the selector that we would be blessed by either choice and left in God's hands to decide which one was the best fit for us. So what were we given you are asking?? We were given the Map Trek 6 E-Book set which is a wealth of resources and learning fun. The other option that I am sure we would have been equally happy receiving was Time Maps, which follows more of the timeline flow of learning.

      When trying to teach History or Geography you really cannot do one without the other, they go together like peanut butter and jelly. History teaches the When, Why, Where and How? The Geography SHOWS the WHERE. This helps really imbed the details into the brain as we are learning. I know for me and my kids we are visual learners, this may be where my problem really was years ago. All books and not visual aids. I have found that this is not a conducive way of learning for my family and for many others as I often sit and chat with other homeschool Moms, many of them seem to struggle with the same issues I do. Where do we find quality learning aids to help our visual learners? So now they look to me and my reviews to help them in their search. I am excited to be able to share Knowledge Quest with them as this is just what we needed to help us "get" the whole picture of our History and Geography. To meld it together and help us SEE it.

      Now like I said we were chosen to review the Map Trek 6 E- Book set, now you may be thinking how are maps this useful. Well let me help you see the value.  These are not just Maps, there are 4 world mapbooks, and 2 US Edition Map Books for a total of 465 maps. There is a little something for every aspect of learning and homeschooling in these 6 books. Now the learning is merely not just looking at maps, there are Historical Atlas and Outline Maps, Full Color Teacher Answer Key Maps, Unlabeled Student Maps,Grid Maps and Blank Grids and then my most  favorite is the Lesson Plans . These are divided up into age categories and so it is was easy to see which would work best for us. For me it was very clear cut as my boys both fell in the same age category, although moving into Fall they will be in two separate ones so this was important to me that I am able to choose different levels for the boys to also work independently of each other in their own grade levels. This Summer we were working on Rome and the Roman Empire so this came in quite handy to finish up our studies.  The lesson plans are divided as follows, Level A grades 1-4, Level B grades 5-8,(this is the level we tried out), Level C grades 9-12 (this is the level we will be getting to this Fall with Alyx). These lessons are not a label this map, which is what our current curriculum does. The boys find this type of learning boring and it never ends well. They were pleasantly surprised to see that these lessons required them to research using the internet, and to refer back to their history book to find the answers they were seeking.  This is not merely looking at a map and saying what it's name is. It was fun to learn about the Roman empire and see where all of this actually happened not just hear about where it took place. My kids loved the historical maps as they are completely different than today's maps we often see and use. They are excited to move onto the next phase of our learning and continue on with these fun interactive maps.   The Grid maps helped us learn to label land masses and this was a new adventure for us as well. The boys found this fascinating and wanted to learn more and more.

The Map Trek 6 E-Book Download is available from Knowledge Quest for $47 and is an asset to any homeschooling classroom.  If you would rather have a physical CD version of the set you can purchase that in a 2 CD set for $49.95.  You can also choose to purchase the  World Map books separately from each other for $14.95.   You can purchase the US books for $19.95. If you would like to see a sample version of the maps you can click here and go to the bottom of the page.
 While you are there be sure to check out the vast array of other products that Knowledge Quest has to offer. You will not be disappointed that is for sure.

Do not forget to check out what the other Schoolhouse Review Crew members had to say about Knowledge Quest as we all view products from different aspects so you are bound to learn something different from each of us.

 Disclaimer: As a member of the TOS Crew, I received this product, at no cost to me, in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are mine.

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