Thursday, August 19, 2021

It's NOT Greek to Me! -- my REVIEW

Disclosure: I received this complimentary product through the Homeschool Review Crew 

When I initially read the name of the product that we were able to review, It's NOT Greek to Me!, I did not think that I was interested in it at all. I am not really a Latin & Greek type homeschooler--I admire those folks who are, but it's just not us. So I thought...Greek...uhhhhhh...but when I found out what this course is about, I was so happy that we had the opportunity to use it! It's NOT Greek to Me! by Alene H. Harris and produced by Ready To Teach is not actually a Greek curriculum like you might use if you were interested in learning to translate the New Testament, but it is actually a course about using Greek morphemes to understand and use words better (morphemes are what I have usually called root words and prefixes/suffixes). More than a third of our words in English have Greek roots--and by learning these morphemes, one's understanding of the English language increases more and more! 

Ready to Teach

I will also remind you that a lot of scientific terminology is based in the Greek language as well, so learning the Greek morphemes helps with science learning as well! (Okay, I bet you're figuring out already that I like this curriculum!)

The curriculum itself is a student workbook and a teacher's manual--and a USB drive with powerpoints on it. We also received a hole punch and a ring for flashcards. The books are softcover.

The teacher's manual begins with an explanation of the course and a suggested plan for using the lessons over a five-day week. The expectations are clearly laid out and there's even a chart to make it easier to follow day to day.

I mentioned above that there are powerpoint lessons on the usb. These lessons introduce students to the morphemes for each lesson and walk the student through different steps of learning them. One thing that I really thought was helpful is that the student is prompted to think of words that he/she already knows that include those morphemes. This can help them in understanding the meaning and in retaining the definitions of the word parts. I would also like to point out here that the powerpoints are not just static plain slides for the student to read, but they are crafted in such a way that as the student goes through them they almost feel as if they are viewing a video presentation. The slides have animations and build upon each other and definitely keep the students' interest! 

Words are introduced to students and the parts are explained. The student can use the workbook right alongside the slides and fill in the definitions as they are shown.

In further assignments, students "work" words which means taking apart their sections and figuring out the definition of the words from the morphemes and then checking to see if they got it by comparing them to a dictionary definition. Students also use the morphemes to make up their own words--and make the corresponding definitions :) 

The course seems to make use of many different ways of learning. There are slides on the computer, there is note-taking, there is association with words that are already known, there is writing (I am such a big proponent of using the physical-ness of writing to learn things!), there is constructing flashcards and reviewing them, and more. 

There is a serial story, as well, that utilizes new words in context for the student to read and understand. 

The feel of the whole course is that it is fun, not intimidating, but do-able. I know that might sound like I am stretching it, but honestly it is! To illustrate that, my youngest child who is going into her senior year (which is already very full) asked if we can continue this course throughout the schoolyear so that she can complete it (of course I said yes!)

My daughter wanted to share her thoughts about the course as well: I really liked the "it's not Greek to me!" Course. When I'm reading, if a word I don't know is used, I often won't take the time to figure it out. I'll skip over that word, maybe missing the main point of the sentence. With this course, it teaches skills on how to recognize different parts of words, what they mean, and how to understand a word with a jumble of prefixes, suffixes, etc. 
I think this is an important skill to have---- being able to quickly and correctly identify the meaning of a strange word.

I think that when we use the rest of the course throughout the schoolyear, we might not use the 5 days a week format, just because we are going to squeeze it in where we can--but she will certainly do the remaining lessons! The five-day-a-week format is a twelve week plan, but you are free to use it as you wish. 

I forgot to mention the instructor's manual. I really appreciate that it contains not only answers to the tests, but also answers to working the words and more. The instructor's manual makes it a much less parent-heavy course. 

I really like this course and I definitely recommend it. At least in our family, the focus on "root words" was more in the younger elementary years and kind of fell off as the kids got older--but this is really a time that they need this! The course is easy to use (and easy for a student to use independently) and the outcomes are very important and helpful for their future knowledge. 

If you would like to hear what other families have to say about  It's NOT Greek to Me! please click on the graphic link below!

Learn Greek Vocabulary with Ready to Teach

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