We received the H.A. Guerber Text, Student and Teacher's books for both The Story of the Thirteen Colonies & the Great Republic Set along with the 200 Questions About American History Set. The question set comes with a huge set of sturdy cards also. It's geared for kiddos in 5th-8th grade and covers from the Native Americans before Leif the Lucky and Columbus came to town all the way to the Spanish-American War. I did this with Kaden even though he is only in the 4th grade and had no problem at all grasping anything he read.
Kaden started reading The Story of the Thirteen Colonies & the Great Republic as soon as it came in and actually got almost 60 pages in and I was like wait...there is questions to do!!! :) He was just outside reading, happy as can be...lost in time. The chapters are all a page or two...very easy to read. This is great because I find long 10 page chapters packed with tons of info doesn't retain well. My kids and I prefer learning key information, the highlights and important people and events. The pictures throughout the book is great too, though they are all in black and white. Some of the art work would have been nice in color, but we were able to find all of them online that he was really interested in looking at in color. The cards are fantastic, we normally get out the card stock or note cards and make our own fact cards for dates, places and events. We sat out on the trampoline and organized the cards. The cards are divided into numbered Drill questions, Presidents of the United States, a Time Line and Notable Quotes. These cards were bold, easy to read and very sturdy. We decided to tape the Timeline Cards up on the wall as we learn them along the way.
Since Kaden read quickly we had to go back and answer the questions. So, to catch up where we were at in the book we started out with the Student Guide from The Story of the Thirteen Colonies & the Great Republic Set. I'll give you an example of a lesson. Normally you would read the corresponding chapters in the book first. Lesson one was the first three chapters. Then go over the Facts to Know portion and look up and fill out the Vocabulary words. The third section of each lesson is of course the comprehension questions. I did these orally with Kaden. He has a hard time writing and there was usually about 7-10 questions. This worked great for us and as his hand strength improves he will write more. The final section to each lesson is the Enrichment activities. These are great...I think this is the glue in remembering anything new. In this particular lesson Kaden used the Map in the appendix of his Student Guide to locate various countries and bodies of water that he just read about. Then he added to his Timeline and did extra research on the Native Americans from our State. Other Enrichment activities in the rest of the guide were journal entries, chart and route making and reading important Historical documents from the appendix.
The 200 Questions About American History student book is straightforward just like Kaden likes. The beginning it does offer a weekly guide, but we just hit the road running and ended up doing a little more then what was suggested most weeks. I loved that it gave you exact pages that each question's answer would be found. The book consisted of 150 questions, 30 Timeline event questions, 20 quotes from American History and 44 President questions. And just like the other guide this one also has some goodies in the back of it.
So, what did we think? I think I Loved it, Kaden Loved it too and has been looking through their website for more sets to try. I enjoy seeing him get excited about learning and his passion rubs off onto me and I find myself jumping ahead of schedule to learn just a little bit more. That my friends is what makes a Homeschool day dreamy. I would suggest this for any Family learning American History... this would be great to do over the Summer. And I forgot to mention that in the main book before the contents page is a great section with Tips for Teachers. If you are a little unsure of how to capture your kiddos thirst for History you might find a thing or two in there to help you along your journey back in time. These sets are great to use together and require very little prep work for you as the Teacher. I appreciated how simple and well organized the Teacher's guide was laid out, not once was I unsure of what to do or read with what question.
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