Remember that post last week about math being the necessary evil? Well, maybe I misspoke! I think Grammar is the necessary evil. Not really, but I did have a very hard time choosing a grammar program for this year. Since this is our first FULL year of homeschooling I don't have a huge pool of experience to draw from when it comes to what works well with my children and what doesn't.
First Language Lessons for the Well Trained Mind (Volumes 1 & 2) is what I chose for GMan. A veteran homeschooler friend of mine recommended it and after looking through hers I know it's something he will like. There is a short, scripted lesson each day, and I love the emphasis on memorizing poetry as you go along. I also really like the fact that it's nongraded, and we can work at our own pace through the book. I also found these printables, done by another homeschooling mom, and have printed and laminated them for our school year. (If you get a chance to poke around her site, it is WELL WORTH your time. This gal is amazing!)
Now, for Miss B we used a simple third grade grammar text last year. I really didn't like it, although she DID. It was quick and didn't require much of her - presented a rule and then she did a couple of worksheets about it, but I found that as I quiz her about it this summer she didn't retain much, so we need a grammar program that teaches and reviews constantly. Enter Grade 4 Daily Grams. I see us doing this at the beginning of each morning. This is what the publisher has to say:
"Concepts are reviewed within 25-30 days, helping students to retain and consistently remember 'older' concepts. Daily Grams format follows the same pattern of capitalization, punctuation, general concepts and sentence combining along with a dictionary review."
Now, doesn't that sound like what I'm looking for? The Daily Grams also go along with the Easy Grammar text. I am hoping that this gives us a more focused approached to grammar with Miss B this year. Since she had gone to public school for the first 3 1/2 years, her view of learning is much different than my son's -- she doesn't think learning is taking place unless mom is standing at the board teaching and assigning pages in a workbook. I am having to ease her out of this gently. So, a more nebulous grammar program like Simply Grammar (which I actually have a copy of and several people have recommended) wouldn't work as well with her. Maybe next year?
If you have a grammar text or approach that has really worked with your children, can you share it with me?? I'm open to lots of help on this one!