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Review of World Geography by
Paradigm Accelerated Curriculum (PAC)
Description from the website:
Price: $111.35 for the whole kit – earns one high school credit
World Geography is available in six soft cover texts with six soft cover companion student activity books. The course is a study of the six basic geographic regions of the world: chapter one, North America; chapter two, South America; chapter three, Europe; chapter four, Africa; chapter five, Asia; and chapter six, Oceana.
Each chapter covers 15 topics: borders, terrain, water, climate, vegetation and wildlife, famous sites and events, ethnicities, languages, religions, transportation, government, diplomacy, economics, natural resources, and industry, including exports. Maps, charts, and graphics enhance understanding and appreciation of the distinctive of each region.
Students learn about such wildlife as polar bears, kangaroos, moose, eagles, seals, and tigers. Famous places are explored: pyramids, castles, canyons, tourists attractions, mountain ranges, and islands. Students learn abut Christianity, Islam, Judaism, and Eastern religions. Lessons describe such things as rivers, ports, exports, free enterprise, national traditions, and transportation ranging from donkeys to jumbo jets.
A little overview about our homeschool and why I was excited to get my hands on this curriculum:
My daughter is in eighth grade and she loves geography. If I need to know what continent a small country is in, I can just ask her and she usually knows. If I give her a map and ask her to fill in countries, she does a great job. This is wonderful and all, but is has proven a difficult task to find a suitable geography curriculum for her.
What I liked initially about this curriculum is the individual soft cover units and accompanying activities text booklet, which is really just a question and answers text based on each lesson. We decided to start off with unit one, as would seem typical. When she came to me bored with North America since we just studied US Geography last year, it was really easy to switch to another unit. I allowed her to select which one she would like to do and that made her happy. Since each unit keeps the same structure and doesn’t build upon the last unit (that we have found), it seems pretty easy to jump around according to your child’s interests.
After the second week, we had to sit down and discuss how it was working, because I sensed some frustration with my daughter. Since she loves geography, I was all ears in what her “likes” and “dislikes” were, especially since I was doing a review.
Through the Eyes of a 12 Year Old
We decided it would be awesome for her to write her own little review. So, here it is, a review from my daughter, who is in eighth grade, 12 years old.
Disclaimer: I was not paid for my review, however, I did agree to “pay” her to write her honest opinion in the form of an iTunes gift card. I asked her to write her honest opinion, her likes and dislikes, and in no way did the iTunes gift card influence her opinion, LOL.
The lessons are very intriguing and fascinating; I like them a lot and I learn a lot too, but they seem too long. I have always had a love for learning geography and this curriculum works well for me, but the questions in the activity book seem too hard to answer most times.
What I did at first is I read the lesson and then answered the questions, but I had a hard time remembering the answers and then I couldn’t find them easily when I went back through the lesson. I tried reading the questions first and then answering them as I read and that worked better for me, although it was still difficult at times to answer them and often I had to go back and re-read anyway.
So my mom gave me a notebook and I wrote down the lesson name, vocabulary, and life principle, then I would summarize the lesson I just read. That worked the best for me, and it helped me pick up better on what I was learning. Over all, I like the lessons, they hold lots of information on the continents and I am looking forward to using this curriculum for the rest of my eighth grade school year.
In Closing…to Sum it all up
I like how this course is independent, however, I think it would work better for my daughter in a couple of years. It is heavily reading comprehension based and will earn high school credit. Parents will be required to check the answers to the daily assignments, tests, and quizzes. We may have been ambitious attempting it in eighth grade, but since geography is one of her stronger subjects, I thought we would give it a try. The reading comprehension part is what got her. We usually tackle that by doing notebooking and narration rather than Q&A, which tends to freeze her up.
Overall, she likes the material she is learning, we just tweaked it to cut out the activities text since it was too much for her, and I am having her notebook about what she learned instead. I have no doubt that in a couple of years she would be able to tackle the activities booklet.