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Monday, May 23, 2011

Product Review: Pearson Education Social Studies

Pearson Education is a leader in creating educational products. I was fortunate enough to receive a copy of a social studies curriculum titled All Together. This textbook is intended for the first grader and offers worldwide facts and figures as well as civic duty suggestions. Lessons often cover a full page spread and include large colorful photographs and graphics.

A typical lesson might include the introduction of an important cultural occurrence such as the reporting of the news. Two or three sentences will describe what this is. Questions or suggestions for further investigation into this topic will be listed as well as an Internet link for an on-line activity (if available). Lessons are grouped into units and units end with vocabulary and skill review questions.

This textbook is available from the website for $43.47, add a workbook for less than $4.00 or a teacher's guide for $150. The company also offers a math program as well as a reading program for the lower grades.

What we thought:
The textbook is colorful and visually stimulating. It is easy to follow and the ideas and activities introduced are fun and engaging. Isaac enjoyed working through the lessons, and found them easy and simple to master. I did not have the teacher's guide, and did not really feel like I would need it to teach my own child at home.

What I struggled with is that this is a textbook in the simplest form. Plain and simple, that is exactly what you are getting. Textbooks may work for some families, but we are not a big textbook family. Another area I had difficulty with is the fact that this book is all over the place. It introduces everything with one or two sentences and then moves on to something different. It's as if it is teaching social studies in a TV commercial format. Every thirty or so seconds you turn the page and it is a whole new and different visually-stimulating idea. Maybe it is intended for those who only have a minute a day to teach social studies. If that sounds like your homeschooling schedule (and we definitely all go through times like that), then you should definitely check out this program.

Disclaimer: As a member of the TOS Homeschool Review group, I received a free copy of All Together in exchange for an honest review on this blog. I received no other compensation and all views are my own. 

1 comment:

Susan said...

I suspect that there's more to this program in the teacher support materials, but who can say without seeing the teacher support materials, right? ;0)