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Friday, August 28, 2015

Illuminating Literature: When Worlds Collide Schoolhouse Review Crew Review 2015 #hsmommas #hsreviews #hsliterature

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Writing with Sharon Watson Review

    This year we are really focusing on the basics and less on outside activities. This is Alyx's Senior year and Taylor's Junior year so we are crossing our T's and dotting our I's. One thing I realized we had not focused as much on as I had liked to was Literature with Taylor. So I was delighted for the opportunity to review a new set from Writing with Sharon Watson called Illuminating Literature: When Worlds Collide. This included 4 different books as well as we received the first two novels that Taylor would need to get started.

Writing with Sharon Watson Review



    So what actually did we get?
Writing with Sharon Watson ReviewTo start with we received several physical products and then one PDF download. In the  Illuminating Literature: When Worlds Collide set we got the $39.49 Student Book, the $16.49 Teacher's Guide, the $8.49 Quiz and Answer Manual and the Novel Notebook(free PDF download). In addition to the items in the set, we were also sent the first two novels that we would need to get Taylor on his way to a literature journey, these are Pudd'nhead Wilson, by Mark Twain and The War of the Worlds, by H.G. Wells. If you do not have these already in your home library you can check them out at your local library or purchase them from Sharon Watson's aStore on Amazon.
Writing with Sharon Watson Review


  So what did we do with this set of Literary goodness?
Writing with Sharon Watson ReviewTaylor was the student, he is almost 16 and starting his Junior year of high school. He used this 3 days a week during the review period but will be using it 4 days when we start our full schedule in a little over 2 weeks. This is a full year, 2 semester course. So staying on that path will have Taylor completing this mid Spring which will work nicely for our timeline of our homeschool.

  This is a complete student led program suitable for upper junior high and high school, which is wonderful as we migrate towards college and are using a more independent learning style, this has helped immensely while I try to get my home business up and running, I am here if they need me but able to work on my own things that need to get done. This has really helped free up some of my time. Taylor love working independently as he can do it on his own schedule. He is a night owl that likes to sleep in.  So Illuminating Literature: When Worlds Collide has been a perfect fit for how things run in our homeschool nowadays. These are especially designed for any type of Christian class, whether it be a homeschool, or a co-op or a traditional Christian classroom. No need to read ahead to make sure there is appropriate content. Peace of mind from the start.

In this literature course, students will easily learn . . .
* Literary terms and elements
* Theme
* Conflict
* The Hero’s Journey
* How authors mold their hearts
* Fiction-writing techniques for today
* Discernment in their own reading

Other books your students will be studying in Illuminating Literature: When Worlds Collide, about one a month for the school year:
–The War of the Worlds by H. G. Wells
–The Friendly Persuasion by Jessamyn West
–Peter Pan by Sir James Barrie
–Warriors Don’t Cry by Melba Patillo Beals
–A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens
–Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
–The Screwtape Letters by C. S. Lewis

Writing with Sharon Watson Review  For starters Taylor read  Pudd'nhead Wilson, by Mark Twain I always like for him to read a book all the way through and then begin the work and then he can read it again as he does the lessons. He needs this process as he has a hard time processing what he is reading sometimes. Reading it through once and then in pieces as he works along make it stick a little more for him. Each chapter has 5-10 lessons totalling a total of 70 lessons. Each chapter can take about a month if you follow the guide that helps keep you on pace. Once completed you can award your child with 1 full credit of High School English/Language Arts. There are 9 chapters, starting with Chapter 0, which is an introduction chapter. This helps to familiarize your student in what a Literature course entails. I think this is a helpful chapter especially if your student has not done a formal literature course in the past.

  Chapters 1-8 introduces one of the novels, well actually 7 novels and one memoir. As your student works through the course they will learn to compare and contrast some of the books, This is an important part of discerning literary content. I was pleased with how this course lays out. As Taylor went through the lessons he not only learned in depth about Mark Twain but he learned fiction writing techniques that he will be able to carry over into his creative writing class he will be taking in the winter. So for us this course serves a dual purpose. There is also Vocabulary quizzes which will take the place of our spelling tests this year. I like to incorporate vocab words from our studies into our spelling tests, Having the vocab tests built into this course took that additional burden off of me. I like, no, I LOVE when that happens.

The chapter ends with your choice of activities to complete, with Pudd’nhead Wilson some of the choices are researching your family Genealogy, interviewing some with a different Ethnicity or background or drawing one of the characters and some other choices as well. Taylor chose to research our Genealogy, we used Ancestry.com since we have a family member who has started that journey for our husband's side of the family. My side is a bit more complex  and so it is going to be an interesting adventure to say the least. I am looking forward to taking this journey with Taylor, there are some missing pieces to my family that I have been longing to find.

   You have the option of taking the Quizzes and test online and therefor would be graded for you, we opted to do it the old fashioned pen and paper way, with the Quiz and Answer manual,  this way I could go over it with Taylor and discuss his answers and make it more conversational. He tends to do better for test on paper so he can take breaks as needed.

  Taylor will be beginning Chapter 2 on Monday. I am excited to see his motivation to move along in this curriculum, he is enjoying the fact that it is not as stuffy as things we have tried in the past. So Kudos to Sharon Watson for making this light and engaging and not boring and dragging. This is exactly what we have been looking for.
 I am going to be ordering an additional consumable student workbook so that Alyx can take this course too. He doesn't need the credits for ELA for graduation but I feel he could gain so much from this course that I am insisting he do it anyway.
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