Review of The Master and His Apprentices: Art History from a Christian Perspective

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Looking for homeschool art history curriculum?  Let me tell you about The Master and His Apprentices: Art History from a Christian Perspective created by The Master and His Apprentices.  With a daughter who loves everything about art, I am always on the lookout for new art programs that will inspire and motivate our daughter.  For this review we received the downloadable version of this curriculum.  We received Print/Photocopy rights for our family.  I really appreciate this feature.  It means if our older sons wanted to do this program, they also could.

The Master and His Apprentices: Art History from a Christian Perspective offers a product that is suitable for adults, high school students, parents and artists in a wonderfully inspiring program.  For this review, we received the Digital Edition of the Textbook and Teacher’s Guide.  With the textbook being 380 pages and the Teacher’s Guide being 116 pages, I decided it was in our family’s best interest to download the textbook to our iPad and then print out the Teacher’s Guide.   I made this decision because the textbook contains a tremendous amount of artwork which is in color.  I felt like reading the textbook on our tablet would work fine for our family.

The course is designed for a chapter a week.  My original intention was for our daughter and I to work through the course together.  Even though I claim a limited to non-existent talent in art, this course really excited me.  This course is meant to be a full high school credit when completed.  I love that there is no nudity or other objectionable material included.

The Teacher’s Guide includes what to read, discussion questions, student worksheets, exams and more.  It includes instructions for teachers in classroom settings, Home school parents, record keeping forms (including attendance and grade sheets),a syllabus, terms to describe art, Art History Paper Instructions, weekly discussion question worksheets and exams along with an answer key.

 

I decided the best way to approach The Master and His Apprentices was for my daughter and I to read the textbook on our own and then discuss the worksheets and other questions in the Teacher’s Guide.  This Christian Art History textbook covers an introduction to art, Creation, Ancient Cultures, Classical Antiquity, Middle Ages, the Renissance, and Baroque Era & Beyond.  There are also appendixes that includes essays, a period chart, a timeline, pieces by location, terms to describe art, and even an index.

Because of some things going on in our life for the past few weeks that involved me doing a lot of driving, I decided to have her ride with me and we discussed the material orally rather than having her complete the worksheets by hand.  I felt this gave us the opportunity to go more in depth than what would have happened on paper.  Now that life has settled down, we will probably use a combination of oral and written formats for the worksheets.  Then after we were home, she filled out the worksheets.All of the questions for the worksheets are open-ended rather than multiple choice which I like; since it makes her think more. For the exams there are matching, multiple choice, fill-in-the-blanks, and short essay questions.  The first exam comes at the end of Chapter 7, so we are not quite there yet.  Here is a completed worksheet.

 

As our daughter and I worked through the chapters, I feel like we both enjoyed a greater appreciation of how art and history work together.  We also loved the variety of artistic works included in the textbook.

 

 

You can find The Master and His Apprentices on social media at the following links:
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/The-Master-and-His-Apprentices-245504999349223/
Pinterest: www.pinterest.com/themasterandhisapprentices/boards/

My daughter and I are really enjoying The Master and His Apprentices: Art History from a Christian Perspective.   So if you are looking for a homeschool art history curriculum, check it out for yourself.  If you would like to read reviews by other members of the Home School Review Crew, click here or on the graphic below.

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Thoughts for Tuesday, June 26, 2018

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Last week our oldest son completed his Certified Nursing Assistant training on Friday. Now all he needs to do is pass his state certification exam. But in the meantime, he had orientation on Friday and starts working on Saturday.

Last week our youngest son helped with Vacation Bible School. So my primary role last week was that of driver.

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So what has been going on in your world?  I would love to hear from you.

 

Review of Persuasive Writing and Classic Rhetoric: Practicing Habits of Great Writers from Silverdale Press LLC

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Making sure that my high school students learn to write well requires me to choose curriculum that teaches students how to write well and Silverdale Press LLC does that with their Persuasive Writing & Classical Rhetoric: Practicing the Habits of Great Writers program.  I felt this program would be a good fit for our 17-year-old son.  The program is designed for students ages 14-18 years old.  We received the downloadable program, which inlcuded:

  • Lesson Book (235 pages)
  • Workbook (consumable, 202 pages)
  • Reader (111 pages)
  • Answer Key (68 pages)

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Silverdale Press LLC is based in Winchester, Virginia.  The company was founded by Joshua and Jill Hummer who parent four young children and are advocates for homeschooling.  Their goal is to help homeschooling parents educate their children with excellence as well as confidence.

As the parent of two sons who hae already graduated along with our 17-year old son, we also have a 15-year-old daughter.  However, we decided to just use this program with our son at this time.  I know at some point in the future I will use this program with our daughter.

The program is designed to be completed in four days a week for 36-weeks.  So it is a full-year program.  Our son does not particularly care for writing so I was not sure how he was going to feel about doing this program.  But he seemed to do alright with the assignments.

The course begins by discussing what persuasive writing and rhetoric along with providing a profile of rhetoric for Patrick Henry.  Each weekly lesson includes reading material found in the Lesson Plan book and the reader along with pages in the workbook.  The course also covers habits of great writers, invention, subject, sources, taking notes through statements of facts, an introduction to style, punctuation and even what real writers do and more.  Pictured below are the table of contents.

I loved the fact that our son could basically work independently.  Every assignment is clearly laid out in the Lesson Plan book, so it did not require a lot of preparation or time on my part.  With the answer key, our son was able to check most of the work by himself.  However, I did try to discuss what he was reading and working on with him. Here are some pictures of the lesson plan book.  The parent can play as much or as little of a role in this course as they want.  However, I feel it is important for parents to at least monitor their student’s progress.  At the beginning of each lesson learning objectives are laid out along with important terms and a schedule.  I like how each week includes a writing assignment.

 

The reader includes readings on people such as Patrick Henry, John F. Kennedy, Winston Churchhill, Sarah Josepha Hale, Benjamin Franklin, Eleanor Roosevel and more.  Each weekly lesson focuses on one of these important people.  The length of the reading assignments varies.  I will say so far our son seemed to think the reading assignments were appropriate in length.

For each day of every lesson, the student will be using the student workbook to answer questions, define terms or complete writing assignments.  I love this daily interaction with what the student is learning.  Obviously the length of time needed to complete the workbook pages varies.  Defining terms or answering questions takes less time than actually writing.  We also appreciated the variety of tasks each day.  Here is a sample of a completed workbook page.

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I have to say our family has enjoyed using  Silverdale Press LLC ‘s Persuasive Writing & Classical Rhetoric: Practicing the Habits of Great Writers program.  So check it out for yourself.  If you would like to read reviews from other members of the Home School Review Crew for this program or their White House Holidays Unit Studies, designed for ages 5-18, click here or on the graphic below.

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Review of Memoria Press’ Classical Composition I: Fable Set and Classical Composition II: Narrative Set

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When I think of Classical Christian Education I think of Memoria Press so I choose the Classical Composition I: Fable Set  and Classical Composition II: Narrative Set to review with my daughter. For many years our family has strived for a Christian Classical Education for our children and finding the right Christian Classical Curriculum for our family has been essential to us.  That is why I was thrilled for our family to have the opportunity to review these two products.  Our 15-year-old daughter expressed excitement upon receiving these products.  These courses are recommended for grades 4-12, and I think these recommendations are perfect. Of course, the older the student, the more in-depth they will go and the higher the expectations will be.

The one thing I love about Memoria Press is the variety and quality of products they offer.  This company has been a favorite of our family since we began homeschooling.  So it seemed a natural progression to try their Classical Composition courses.  Classical Composition I: Fable Set and Classical Composition II: Narrative Set and we have enjoyed them so far.  The sets we received included both Teachers guides, both student workbooks, both sets of DVDs and a lesson plan booklet that covers both courses in a 34-week layout.

I love how the lesson plan booklet lays out everything in detail for each day, plus includes a checkbox for each day so I could mark off things as we completed them.  The lesson plan book also means if something happened and I was not around, our daughter could grab the lesson books and know exactly what to do.

We were so excited upon receiving these materials we just jumped right without utilizing the DVDs.  With the assistance of the teacher guide, we were able to figure out exactly what needed to be done, especially with the help of the Lesson Plan booklet.  We started off by reading the Teaching Guidelines at the beginning of both the Teacher’s Guide and the Student Workbook.  These clearly lay out the requirements, expectations, and layout of the assignments.  From the fables themselves to variations, outlines, narrations, paraphrases and even writing a final draft is described in detail.

The Teacher’s Guide also includes an advanced rubric for grading the student’s work.  There are even optional grammar requirements.  I found this extremely useful since we could utilize those requirements to help cover grammar instead of needing additional material.  There is also an introduction to the Fable Stage that describes imitation and suggestions for starting the writing journey.

As we began the actual lessons, our daughter expressed some distaste for reading out loud, but she is my introverted child.   So I really was not surprised by this.  As we moved through the exercises together, she really seemed to enjoy the lessons.  From writing down synonyms to writing outlines, variations, and paraphrases, she enjoyed all the activities.  She even enjoyed writing the final drafts.

The lessons on the DVDs are very well done and enjoyable to watch.  The information is presented in a way that is easy to follow along with what is being taught.  When the videos should be paused for the students to complete assignments, they are told to do so. Brent Vaden, the instructor on the DVDs, has the perfect voice for these DVDs.  He speaks clearly and is easy to understand.  Although I decided to watch the DVDs with our daughter and participate with her in the lessons, I feel she definitely could have completed the assignments on her own – especially with the help of the DVDs.

The lessons in both sets are designed to be spread out over 5 days a week for a two-week period.  This ensures there is time for doing variations (where the student changes the words from the original fable),  does an outline,  does a narration, and writes a final draft using paraphrases which genuinely fit the original story.

In Classical Composition II: Narrative, the layout of the materials reflects similarities to the Fables course.  The student watches the DVDs, does a reading, variations, paraphrases, outlines, additional variations and then writes a final draft.  Again the final draft is created on a separate sheet of paper. Brett Vaden provides the instruction for the DVDs, and he does an excellent job of teaching. the

All the work is done by the student in the consumable workbooks except for writing the final drafts, so this is a grab-and-go curriculum other than having the ability to watch the DVDs.  My daughter and I both are glad we decided to review these products.  If you would like to read additional reviews of Classical Composition I: Fable Set and Classical Composition II: Narrative Set or of other products from Memoria Press, click here or on the graphic below.

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Review of The Critical Thinking Co.’s Critical Thinking Detective Book 1

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As the mother of three sons ages almost 22, 19, and 17 along with a daughter who is 15, I recognize the importance of critical thinking skills.  We have always loved The Critical Thinking Co.™ so I jumped at the opportunity to review Critical Thinking Detective Book 1  for our daughter.  As the youngest of four children, logical thinking is a must for our daughter.  In order to counter anything her brothers might send her way, I knew this book would be very helpful for developing her reasoning abilities.

The Critical Thinking Co. offers a variety of products from mathematics, logic, test prep and more for toddlers through high school.  So there are plenty of options to choose from no matter what your need is.  The Critical Thinking Co. has been serving students and their families since 1958.  On their “About Us” on their website they state their mission statement is: “The Critical Thinking Co.™ is committed to developing students’ critical thinking     skills for better grades, higher test scores, and success in life. We do not teach through drill and memorization or teach to the tests—we empower the mind!”

Through the years, our family has used a variety of products from this company.  We have always found the materials to meet our family’s needs.  We have talked to representatives from the company at several different Home School Conventions.  So I truly was thrilled for our daughter to review “The Critical Thinking Detective Book 1” which is meant for grades 4-12.  I feel this grade spread is a good representative of the ages who would be capable of doing this work.  You can get the book as either a printed book (which is what our family received) or as an e-book.  Personally for something that involves critical thinking skills and figuring things out, I prefer a physical copy.  But I can also see the benefits of having it as an ebook.


Our daughter is an artist by nature and talents, but I knew she would benefit from this book.  I also knew she has the ability to reason and deduce things courtesy of her older brothers.   I knew I wanted our daughter and I to work on this book together.  So we began by reading the section that tells about the book and then the section that tells how to solve these cases along with the hints.  Then we moved into the first case which dealt with a car thief.  I knew it would be helpful for our daughter to have someone to bounce ideas off of and to brainstorm with while trying to solve the cases.

I love how the sentences are numbered which made it easy to demonstrate what sentence proved the innocence or guilt of each suspect.  For example, in this first case, our daughter was able to see who was wearing dark pants and which suspects were not over 6 feet tall.  Basically, we determined who was innocent by their statements in order to finally determine who was guilty.  I found it helpful that the book reminded us that the the stories and the statements made by the suspects all were true.  This helped eliminate any confusion when trying to determine guilt or innocence.  I know if our daughter had done this book when she was in the 4th grade, that would have been very helpful.

The Critical Thinking Co. has provided the following special offers for you to utilize:

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I have to say we really enjoyed working through this book.  I am sure we will do more in the future.  So check out The Critical Thinking Co.™  and Critical Thinking Detective Book 1  for yourself.

If you want to read reviews by other members of the Home School Review Crew including reviews of Critical Thinking Detective Book 1, Understanding Pre-Algebra, or Vocabulary Riddles Book 1, click here or on the grahic below.

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Monday Musings for June 4, 2018

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So for the last two weeks, our youngest son has suffered from the lack of musical classes.  But today, his suffering ended.  The summer band program began today.  Our 17-year-old son and I had the fun of attending our first piano class.  Now I should say, I took piano lessons when I was like 6 or 7 years old and it was only for a few weeks or months at the most (I remember taking the lessons, but not how long).  It was one of the few regrets I have in my life that my parents let me quit.

For most of my life, I have wanted to pursue the art of piano playing.  Our youngest son wanted to learn the harp first, but finding a harp teacher is quite a challenge.  So off and on he has tried teaching himself to play the piano.  We also have found people to teach piano right as we were about to change duty stations.  So when we saw the opportunity to take lessons this summer together, we had to try it.

So today we had our first lesson.  I love that we are able to take classes together.  Our band instructor made the lessons fun and enjoyable.  While the class we are taking is for adults, the book we are using is for children.  But I found it fun to use – especially since it was just my son and I in the class.  So stay tuned the next six weeks to hear how the lessons are going.

 

Here is a video of my son playing.

 

I am looking forward to Wednesday when our son starts beginner band for the clarinet.  Plus our second son, our youngest son and myself will begin band camp.  Then later that afternoon my husband and my husband will play for Advanced Strings.

On a different note, our oldest son started a new adventure today. He began pursuing the goal of becoming a Certified Nursing Assistant.  Through a friend, we found out about the opportunity and Friday we found out he had been accepted.  Today he had his first day of classes.  He has three weeks of classes and upon successful completion of that, he can take the Texas state exam to be come a certified nursing assistant. He seems to be really excited about this opportunity. He was really excited to try on the scrubs they issued him today for the “on the floor” portion of the training. It is going to be interesting to hear all the things he is learning and wants to share with the family. In the meantime, school is continuing for our youngest ones for the summer. We will see how things go for them all.

Also, tonight we canned our first batch of sauerkraut for the year.  There is just nothing like the taste of sauerkraut.  I am so excited about what we have been able to can so far this year.

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So how are things going where you are?