Tuesday, January 4, 2011
My daughter and I got to try out a Bible curriculum from Positive Action for Christ, and we are really enjoying it! We are using the 3rd grade curriculum called Growing with God. I received a teacher's manual, and Mary Grace received the 3rd grade student workbook. As soon as we opened the box and before we even got started using the curriculum, Mary Grace was already really excited about it because her workbook is so colorful and "fun" looking. The teacher's manual, while it's not colorful and pretty like the student's workbook, is in a convenient 3-ring binder and contains not only the student workbook information but also extra information for the teacher to use in presenting the lesson. It also, of course, contains the answers to the questions in the student workbook.
One thing that many moms will really like is that the teacher's manual also contains a weekly lesson plans page. In fact, the lesson plans detail how to use the curriculum whether you prefer to use this study for 3, 4, or 5 days each week. I like to have a plan in mind and to know what I want to try to get done with my kids each day, so I found the lesson plan pages to be really helpful. Of course you could do your own lesson plans if you wanted to, but it sure is handy for them to already be done! It's a wonderful time-saver!
Another thing I really like about this curriculum is that it includes Scripture memorization right in the program. One of my goals for my kids this year was/is for them to begin to memorize Scripture--something I've never really worked on with them so far--so I was so glad to see that that's included! In fact, if you use the program as they outline it for you, your children will end up memorizing the Scripture once and being responsible for knowing it again at least once later in the year--helping to ensure that each student really knows that Scripture and didn't just memorize it long enough to say it once and then forget it. There are also Memorization Report Sheets included in the teacher's book to make it really easy for parents to keep track of the verses and when they are due or have been memorized.
For those who are musically inclined, there is a music curriculum that goes along with this program as well. I didn't receive the music part of the program to review, so I can't describe that for you. I did want to mention it, though, because I know many homeschoolers like to incorporate music into their routines, so you might want to check that out if you are a family who enjoys singing together.
The lessons in this 3rd grade level Bible study curriculum begin with the basics about the Bible being God's Word and the parts of the Bible. They quickly move on to studies of the lives of Abraham, Jacob, Joseph, and Daniel, though. Each lesson includes, of course, part of the story of the Bible character being studied during that unit. Each lesson also includes one or more vocabulary words, several "target truths," teaching strategies for the teacher, and character trait activities.
In each lesson in the student workbook, the student will define the vocabulary word(s) or do an activity with that lesson's words. She will also participate in a discussion or listen to a story to help her get ready for that day's lesson. I like this part because it makes the lesson seem more relevant to the student and hopefully will add interest so that the student will realize that the lesson really does apply to her (or him) and her life. Then there are lots of different activities in which the student hears and learns about the life of the person being studied in that unit. These lessons and activities not only teach the student about the Bible character, but they also emphasize that person's character traits and how those same character traits can be learned and exhibited in the life of the student. And of course, as I mentioned earlier, Bible memorization is part of each lesson as well.
The particular curriculum that my daughter and I are using is from the elementary curriculum series. It has teachers' books and student workbooks for grades K-6. They also have Bible curriculum, though, for middle school and high school students. The student's manual that I received sells for $12.95. (They are $10.95 if you purchase 5 or more--if you are using the curriculum in a school or church setting, for example.) The teacher's manual costs $33.95, or you can buy the teacher's manual on CD-ROM for $19.95. If you choose to include the music part of the curriculum, the music CD is $9.95.
If you'd like to read reviews by other Crew members, you can do that here. In fact, other Crew members received different grade levels to review, so you may want to look around to find a review on the specific grade level that you're interested in using. I plan on checking out some of the middle school and high school level resources for my two older children as well. There are some resources offered that look really great!
NOTE: I received this resource for free in exchange for writing this review. The opinions expressed in this review are my own honest opinions. I received no other compensation.