Thursday, March 9, 2017

Eclectic Foundations - A Language Arts Curriculum Review

When I heard that we'd be able to review Eclectic Foundations Language Arts Level B, which goes along with McGuffy Readers I jumped at the chance! The McGuffy Readers were used more regularly in public schools between the 1830's and up through the 1950's and we've used them on and off for all our children (plus a few that we babysit) for many years.

Language Arts Level B includes a teacher's guide, phonics practice sheets (which came laminated), student workbook, McGuffy's word cards, and McGuffy's First Eclectic Reader (which came from the publisher bound and copied from a public domain revised edition for us to you. I have been using this program mostly with my son, in second grade, and then as some help for my daughter who wanted to learn cursive and would benefit from some additional help with her reading struggles.

Language Arts {Eclectic Foundations }
There are 36 weeks of lessons with 4 short lessons each week. Each lesson has a short reading lesson from the McGuffy Reader, grammar, cursive practice,  phonics review, and a weekly poem (my daughter's FAVORITE part). The student workbook is a consumable product so if you have multiple children in the same level you might consider purchasing that as a PDF. Here's a short video of the first poem they memorized - my son just didn't want to take part in the video.

Because the lessons are short my son loved them!  He is always on the go and had a habit of standing while working or just getting bored and then wanders off if one of his older sisters needs me for something.  So the quick lessons kept his attention and had him asking to do them each day.  This was very encouraging. Most lessons were about 20 minutes long and each lesson was split over 2 days. You first would read the lesson and then discuss the picture. We also did some of the cursive practice as well as reviewed the poem and said the parts we knew. Then on the next day we'd go over the grammar lesson and the parts of speech activities, more cursive practice, and review the poem again. The poem is the same for the entire week and usually that was enough time to finish memorizing it. However, each new week we'd review the previous poems, just to keep them fresh, before going on to the new poem.

Each day we would do the lesson and then we'd use the phonics practice sheets to go over words from the lessons which helped reinforce what he was learning. I like that we could use a dry erase marker so they could be used over and over again with no problems.  The color coded grammar lessons were also a great added "activity" that helped to keep my son's attention on the lesson.

The teacher guide is laid out very well and was a breeze to use. This is helpful when you have multiple children pulling you in multiple directions with needing help for different things at the same times. The teacher guide allowed me to remain on task and not have to think about what came next, but to just do it. I also believe the price of this program bundle is wonderful at just $56 for the printed version ($30 if you'd rather purchase a PDF version that you can print on your own). The printed version does not include the McGuffy Reader, but they are readily available online. 

There are currently Eclectic Foundations Language Arts for Level A (K/1st), Level B (1st/2nd), and Level C (3rd/4th). Level D (5th/6th) is in the works and proposed to be released in 2018. They hope to continue until they have a full K - 12th grade curriculum; which I think would be FANTASTIC! Be sure to check them out on Facebook and give them a "like"!

I hope that you take the time to read some of the other families used this Level as well as Level A and Level C by visiting my Crew members! 
Language Arts {Eclectic Foundations Reviews}

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