Wednesday, April 1, 2015

A TOS Review: It's NOT Greek to Me!

Don’t let “Greek” in the title scare you off. This is a fun vocabulary program intended to help all of us study our sometimes confusing language. In reading up on this program I discovered that 40%of English words involve Greek Morphemes. 90% of Science terms involve Greek and/or Latin Morphemes.

You can imagine the study of morphemes would give any learner a leg up in their vocabulary studies.
For my review I received a Student Book, an Instructor’s Manual and a CD that contained lessons via PowerPoint. I also received a handy dandy flash drive with the same PowerPoint lessons. As of this month, the Ready to Teach will be sending the flash drive out in lieu of the CD.

The program is divided into 12 lessons. Each lesson is intended to take a week.

There is a suggested schedule located in Instructor’s Manual. It is set up for 5 days.  Most weeks we do 4 days of heavy schoolwork with 1 light day. It was easy to modify.

Now here is the thing. Josiah is dyslexic. I didn’t want to pile a bunch of word work on him. But (and this is a biggie) I know that the study of words will help him immensely in decoding words. Josiah and I worked through the program together. I did the majority of the writing (and the heavy lifting), but Josiah did learn quite a bit.

I want to walk you through how it all works. Lesson 1!

Day 1: We watched the PowerPoint presentation.  

I will tell you that when I first glanced over the presentation I was a little worried. There is a lot of information scattered on the page. I was worried that he would have difficulty knowning where to look and miss a lot. However, my worries were for naught. Each portion reveals itself after a click. You can also see that this slide is for bibl;biblio. The words above the definition in gray (anthrop) was on the previous slide. I love how all the words were included on each slide. It was a good review. there are 16 morphemes in each lesson.  

The Student Book gives the student a place to make notes as the lessons progress.

Day 1 also included “working” the first half of the words. We wrote the word, wrote the Greek morpheme and then wrote down a “possible” meaning of the word. Then we looked up the definition in the dictionary and wrote that down.

Day 2 involved working the remaining words assigned. If you have an eager student I don’t see any reason why this cannot be done on Day 1.

Day 3 taught us to write the four types of context clues. This included making up sentences. You can see that Josiah might have had a hand in constructing sentence #2.

We also created new words using the morphemes we had just learned.

This section had us identifying the morphemes in each word and then attaching them to a possible scenario.

 Day 4 had us making Study Cards and completing the review exercises. The rest of the Lessons encouraging you to make Study Cards all along. I like that idea. 

Day 5 is a test! I’m pretty sure we passed! How does one grade her own test anyway? 

Just a few thoughts: 

There are two ways to prepare the study cards. There are those the student can create themselves or those that are premade. We used both, but I am thinking of making up a set using traditional index cards.

This program is really a lot of fun! And so easy to use! My husband is interested in using it for his own studies and has been interested in my experiencing using it. I think that adults and teens alike will benefit immensely just by working through it.

I really love that it uses a couple different of ways to learn. We got to see, write and talk about what we were learning. It made the lessons stick!

If you do have a student who struggles with any aspects of reading or writing I recommend that you work through it with them. The program is set up that it can be used as an independent study or with a larger class. Or you can use it as I on one. Work at your own pace or modify (as we did) the lessons to fit your specific needs.

This isn't primarily a homeschool product. I think English teachers would love this program!

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