Raise your hand if your child loves grammar!
Please note that my hand is not raised.
How can I, someone who loves grammar, have a houseful of kids who dread the very thought of doing grammar lessons?
Well, I’ve discovered a new grammar curriculum that takes a lot of the pain and whining right out of grammar lessons.
So, whether your kids love grammar or are grammar-phobic, you’ll want to check out this brand new program.
Grammar for Writers from Compass Classroom is perfect for kids who aspire to be writers – and even those who don’t. Because let’s face it, everyone is going to need to do some writing throughout their educational career.
This straight-forward approach to grammar will give kids tips to improve clarity and grammar in their written work. The goal of this program is to help students master grammar concepts that will immediately translate into better writing skills.
The program was created by author Jonathan Rogers. Yes, that Jonathan Rogers who wrote The Wilderking Trilogy. (Love those books!).
Grammar for Writers is a video-based course designed to be completed independently by upper middle school or high school aged students.
- 41 lessons video lessons (6.75 hours total)
- Lecture Notes (transcriptions of the videos) in a PDF
- Quizzes for every chapter in a PDF
- This course will give you ½ credit of Language Arts at the high school level.
How is it structured?
You can complete 2-3 lessons per week to finish the course in a semester.
It works best to watch the video lesson and read the lecture notes on one day and then take a quiz the following day. By following this schedule you can complete the course in 20 weeks.
Because some lessons are shorter, there are some weeks when it would be possible to complete 3 lessons. Therefore, the course could easily be completed in one semester.
Alternatively, you could only complete one lesson per week and finish the program in one school year. This would give you the 3 days per week to focus on writing and composition.
The scheduling aspect is flexible – you can use this as a stand-alone grammar course for a semester or alternate lessons with composition lessons for a full language arts credit for the school year.
What did we think?
The first lessons start back at the beginning concepts of grammar with nouns and verbs. It starts off very simply. Therefore, it would work well for a student who has not studied much formal grammar.
My daughter found the first several lessons very basic, so she moved through them at a faster pace since we have covered these grammar concepts previously.
The videos are not overly long with some being 7 or 8 minutes and some being closer to 20 minutes. I liked that they were fairly concise with good examples. However, I wished the time on each video was more consistent to help us better plan the flow of our homeschool day.
The author gives multiple on-screen examples, diagrams, and sample sentences. These were really helpful to visualize the concepts being taught. So, know that it’s not just someone lecturing about grammar. There is a digital whiteboard with key terms, definitions, diagrams, and examples provided as well.
The lecture notes are helpful for students who prefer to have a text or written examples. It was nice to have a copy of the diagrams and examples given in the lecture. This allowed us to refer back to them as needed.
The quizzes are short and concise. Busywork is not a part of this program.
But by far, our favorite part of this program was when the author would give samples of student work. He would analyze the writing in the context of the topic being taught in the lesson. Then he would give multiple options for improving the clarity and structure of the writing. These real-life examples of grammar within a written work were extremely helpful.
Overall, this is a great program for a student who is new to grammar or who is resistant to grammar. It’s a gentle intro, with clear and useful examples. This is practical grammar – you can immediately put the concepts learned in the lessons to use in your own writing to improve.
The format and premise of this program is unique – it’s not grammar for grammar’s sake. It’s grammar that makes sense and is applicable to writing and composition.
Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this program in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are mine.
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