This past year in our co-op we studied American History. When we received Pearson Education’s myWorld Social Studies for Grade 5 (titled Building our Country, volume 5a), I was excited to be able to reinforce some of what we learned last year. Little did I know that not only would it do that, it would encourage my children to want to learn more about our country’s history.
We’ve all heard the saying “don’t judge a book by its cover.” For this review, I need to change that to “don’t judge this book by your first glance at the inside.” When I first peeked inside, I’ll admit to being a bit surprised, and unconvinced that the book I was holding was for 5th grade. Through our use of this book, I’ve re-discovered that a book doesn’t have to look “grade level” intense to deliver the needed material.
The program includes (excerpts from the website):
Promotes active learning, supports students who are learning to read in the content-areas, and promotes active reading strategies. The Student Worktext encourages greater interaction with the content and more active reading leading to long term retention of skills and concepts. Your child will love writing, drawing, circling and underlining content as they connect, experience and understand the world of Social Studies.
Each chapter incorporates a real life story that relates to the lesson providing the basis for discussion. Lessons feature a variety of activities providing your child an opportunity to interact with the material to apply their knowledge. Checkpoints are featured throughout to ensure that your child understands of the material.
myStory Video DVD-ROM
The myStory Video DVD features engaging videos with actual students that explore the Big Question of each chapter. Video icons within the student book indicate that a corresponding video is available on this DVD. These videos allow your child to see children of his or her own age explore the Big Question and the key ideas in each chapter, to go on video field trips, and to watch a character from the chapter come to life. Through these video features, your child will make a personal connection to the lesson, building long-term understanding and knowledge.
Teacher’s Resource Library DVD-ROM
The Teacher Resource Library is a one-stop resource for the myWorld Social Studies Teacher’s Guide, lesson plans, and instruction resources. Each chapter will provide:
- A Teacher’s Guide for each chapter
- Lesson plans
- An audio podcast on chapter subjects
- Hands-on activities to engage your child
- Editable tests for each chapter and separate answer keys
These carefully planned resources will guide you with planning, supporting activities, and testing to ensure learning is personalized to fit your child.
This curriculum (both volumes) is available HERE for $69.99.
We received the first semester of the curriculum, Volume 5A, for purposes of this review.
WHAT I LIKE
The intro to the book touches on reading and writing skills, then gives great summary information on our country, including maps (and how to read them), the economy, jobs, and an excellent overview of our government.
The myStory DVD – think mini field trips on a DVD!
The teacher resource DVD – it includes teacher helps, activities connected to the lessons to help reinforce the lesson, podcasts for the teacher about the lesson – and much more! I especially love the editable resources.
A study guide and review and assessment are included at the end of each chapter – it includes a list of key points for each lesson in that chapter, review questions of reach chapter, and a short writing exercise.
The appendices (even though they’re not called that)! The text of the Declaration of Independence (including a list of the signers) and the U.S. Constitution (including the 27 amendents) is given, along with explanatory notes and questions for thought and application. Political and physical maps of the U.S. and select countries are also included, along with a glossary for reference.
I wish we could go on all the field trips shown on the DVD!
WATCH OUT FOR
As I said earlier, don’t judge the content of this book by its appearance. I thought it looked a bit “young” for 5th grade, but have been impressed by the content.
Don’t let the “textbook feel” fool you – for the most part we’re “allergic” to textbooks around here, but my girls still really enjoyed this.
The book refers to additional online resources. Those are not available in the homeschool package in order to reduce the price to make it more affordable for homeschoolers. Note the online activities are extra, and not necessary to make good use of the curriculum.
Unfortunately, I’ve found a couple instances where the answer key is incorrect. However, since so far we’ve done this together, I’ve been familiar enough with the text and the correct answer for it not to be a big deal.
BE SURE TO
Check out some great homeschool RESOURCES.
Enter the monthly curriculum GIVEAWAY!
I’m re-evaluating a couple of things this summer, so I’m putting this in the undecided column. We enjoyed it so much, though, I’m leaning toward continuing and letting the girls work independently and use the DVD and the worktext as a supplement.
THOUGHTS OF MY CREW MATES
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**Disclaimer: As part of the TOS Homeschool Review Crew, I received the product referenced in this review at no cost in exchange for my fair, honest and unbiased (and not necessarily positive) review. No other compensation was received.