Monday, October 19, 2015

Sheldon's New Primary Language Lessons

I had the opportunity to review Sheldon's New Primary Language Lessons published by, Brookdale House. I received a physical copy of the workbook for this review. Brookdale House publishes curriculum with a focus on the homeschool and private school community.

This is the perfect first grammar for students just starting English grammar. The student will learn the eight parts of speech as well as the basic fundamentals of sentence and paragraph writing. Utilizing solid, yet simple principles your student will be gently guided as they begin their pursuit in grammar study. The student will be introduced to poetry, picture stories, memorization, copywork, dictation, art, grammar, and so much more. I was instantly drawn to the simplicity of the curriculum. It isn't busy or overwhelming for the student. 

The workbook contains 96 lessons. The books appendix contains lesson dictations, vocabulary, memory selections, and an answer key. The lessons are rich in content and void of busy work and unnecessary lengthy lesson requirements. Students will get to express themselves through writing and awaken their imagination.

Who used the curriculum
I used this with my 4th grader. Unlike other curriculums, my daughter enjoyed the whimsical, simplicity of the lessons in this workbook. 

Here is an example of A PICTURE STORY lesson. The student is to read a poem, then from the picture tell in their own words what they see in the picture. 

We built a ship upon the stairs 
All made of the back-bedroom chairs, 
And filled it full of soft pillows 
To go a-sailing on the billows. 

We took a saw and several nails, 

And water in the nursery pails; 
And Tom said, "Let us also take 
An apple and a slice of cake;"-- 
Which was enough for Tom and me 
To go a-sailing on, till tea. 

We sailed along for days and days, 

And had the very best of plays; 
But Tom fell out and hurt his knee, 
So there was no one left but me. 

My daughter wrote:
"The two children are playing on the stairs. They are pretending that they are sailing down the stairs in their imaginary ship. A bucket of water flows down the stairs like a waterfall. The girl is on the pillow and they boy is on his belly going down the stairs. They are making quite a mess. I think that they are having a lot of fun. I also think that this picture is from a long time ago because of how the children are dressed."

In another lesson the student learns about quotation marks using simple sentences and then dictation to put into practice what has been learned about quotation marks. My daughter had a solid understanding of how to use quotation marks after completing this lesson. Not only did she learn an important writing rule but she gained listening skills through dictation, spelling practice as she wrote, and handwriting skills too. 

There really were not any lessons that we did that my daughter disliked. She kind of groaned when memorization passages came up but she surprised herself with how quick she was able to memorize passages. Memorization comes so easy for children. 

I opted to have my daughter use handwriting paper for her dictation and copy work in order to aid with better handwriting. The spaces in the workbook are more than adequate for the required work but my daughter does much better with traditional handwriting paper. I really like how the lessons incorporate so many valuable skills. This was a huge plus!!

In yet another lesson the student is asked to illustrate their copywork. My daughter had to choose a stanza from the selected poem to copy and then illustrate it. 

My daughter chose this stanza from the poem entitled, Where The Brook Goes.

Through the green meadow,
Under the trees,
Runneth a little brook,
Fanned by the breeze;

Final Thoughts
Overall, I absolutely loved this workbook. This is the kind of curriculum that I am constantly searching for and have found in Sheldon's New Primary Language Lessons. I would highly recommend it to fellow educators and homeschoolers. There are just a few things that I wished were included or improved upon. I really wish that the artwork was clearer for the student to better study and see detail. The artwork is very grainy and difficult to truly study and appreciate. Also, it would be really helpful if the artwork, poetry, and literature selections had references or footnotes included. Many times I like to further a particular study and without this information it makes the task tedious or impossible. 

To read more reviews click HERE.

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