Monday, June 30, 2014

Veritas Press (A Review)

I'll admit that choosing a history curriculum for my daughter, since we started homeschooling, has been a struggle for me.  We've tried many different textbooks, living books, and videos, but I think we have finally found our best fit yet! Veritas Press now offers a wonderful, new Self-Paced History Program. We were specifically chosen to review Veritas Press Self-Paced History: 1815 - Present and the 1815 - Present Flashcards.

I was excited to receive this particular time period because we have been studying this part of American History for several years, and I knew it would be a great fit.  I was right! My daughter has really responded well to this format.  Please allow me to share. . .

The Format

This online-only video program is self-paced, meaning the student gets to control how quickly they progress through the lessons.  The lessons are hosted by two very entertaining actors in live-action, short video lessons.  They make fact learning a lot of fun! Each lesson takes breaks with short quizzes, geography/map reviews, and graded tests.  

Each Self-Paced History Course from Veritas Press covers 160 class periods and covers 32 important historical events.  The courses are designed to cover two semesters, or an entire school year.   Following are some screen shots to show you a sample of what your student will see during a lesson. . .

The Flashcards 

The 1815 to Present Flashcards are an important, required, supplement to the Self-Paced Program. They are large, sturdy cards that coincide with the 32 lessons, from The Monroe Doctrine to Modern Day.  Your student will need to have them to reinforce the facts learned in each lesson. It was good for my daughter to hold them in her hand, and have an offline way to study the facts. 
The Memory Song

One of the best tools of this program is the Memory Song, which teaches all 32 of the major events in one, 5-minute song.  My first time hearing it, I thought it sounded so cheesy, and fully expected my daughter to be rolling her eyes, but she loved it, and to be honest, it has really grown on me as well.  The lyrics are provided, so your student will be able to see and hear the facts in another, fun way.   How many of you remember some Schoolhouse Rock songs from your childhood? I do! I can still sing the entire preamble to the U.S. Constitution to this day, simply because it was set to music.  I hear my daughter singing the song throughout the day, so I know it is sticking in her head. 

Navigating and Other Particulars

I believe you'll find this program extremely easy to navigate. It is very user-friendly, for both teacher and student, and the ability to pause and play each slide/segment makes the self-paced program exactly what you would expect.  At any time during the program, your student can access the Table of Contents in a drop-down box, and review lessons as needed, or see attachments related to each lesson.

Your child will be tested throughout this program on the facts.  It is very important that they not take these lightly, as the first score counts and can not be changed, even if they take the test more than once. 

As a parent, you can see the grades at any point along the way in the My Grades section, and you can even print the results for your written records. The students work in their own section, accessed through their own log in information.  Tutorials all along the way help explain everything you may need to know.  

The only recommendation I have for the publishers is to allow students the chance to see what they missed and to have a chance to take the best of three scores, if they so desire.  And the in-lesson quizzes could offer a "help if stuck" button to help alleviate some of the frustration that may come for some students. 
  Pricing and Recommended Ages

Veritas Press Self-Paced History Courses for Grammar School are $199, and the Flashcards are $19.95. The program is recommended for 2nd - 6th grade, and your student should be 7 years old by the time they begin.  Please note, you will be surprised at how much YOU will learn through this program as well, so you may find that your older students benefit from this style of learning as well. 

For your convenience, Veritas Press also offers two Literature Kits for use with their Self-Paced Programs, based on the grade level in which your student will be working. This is an optional purchase, but it is a wonderful way to enhance the online learning with historical supplements.  Click HERE to learn more! 

The Bottom Line

I know many of us operate on a limited homeschooling budget, but I encourage you to research this new Self-Paced History program from Veritas Press, and see if you can find room to make it fit.  I will be cutting back in other areas in order to keep this curriculum as part of our overall plan going forward.  I loved it that much! 

Veritas Press is on Social Media! Click each link to easily "follow" them!   Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Google+!

Many other families have been using this and other Veritas Press' many offerings, so please take time to visit some of their blogs, by clicking the banner below!

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