Sentence Diagramming for Beginners
Homeschool Review Crew
I personally love English and grammar, but I’m not the best teacher. I’m so grateful to The Critical Thinking Co.™ for the help with sentence diagramming with my children. We received a copy of Sentence Diagramming: Beginning in the mail to review through the Homeschool Review Crew.
Sentence Diagramming: Beginning is geared for grades 3-12. I’ve primarily been using it with a 5th grader and a 3rd grader. Personally I think this could also work with some 2nd graders as well.
Learning grammar rules truly doesn’t have to be a fight when you use this curriculum. I have a few kids who don’t like grammar. Language arts is a struggle for them. They love to read though! While I’m grateful for their love of reading, I needed to make them see that sentence diagramming was useful too. Not only is it useful, but it’s necessary. It’s a hard truth to sell to the kids though when you don’t have a curriculum they enjoy and want to use.
About the Curriculum
When you think of sentence diagramming I’m sure some are filled with dread. I’m not one of those people! I happen to be the weird kind of person who gets happy. For me, this was an easy part of school that I look back on with fondness. It might not have been the most thing I did, but it wasn’t hard. Teaching this to my children, however, has proven more difficult. This is where Sentence Diagramming: Beginning from The Critical Thinking Co. ™ comes in.
This paperback lesson book contains 12 lessons. You work through one lesson per week. It’s geared for grades 3-12+, but with all curriculum this can be adjusted and such to fit your needs. Answers are in the back of the book and there is a review as well. The pages for the lessons are perforated so that you can tear out those answers if you have a child who likes to peek.
Lessons covered in this curriculum are: simple subject, main verb, direct object, adjectives, adverbs modifying verbs, predicate nouns, prepositional phrases(adjectival), prepositional phrases(adverbial), compound subjects, compound predicates, compound direct objects, and compound predicate adjectives and nouns. Each of these has their own lesson except for simple subject and main verb which go together for the first lesson.
What We Thought
When you’re the teacher you have to look for your student input. Kids in schools don’t seem(in my personal opinion) to get as much input into their lessons as kids who are homeschooled. My children give this more stars than any other their other grammar books which is good! I can’t say they love it though. I love it for teaching them as it’s set up in a way that doesn’t require me to be pulling my hair out.
Let’s talk lesson 1. It’s simple. The kids simply are fixing sentences. It might be that the verb and noun are switched or maybe they didn’t capitalize or use punctuation correctly. Students fix those errors. Then they have to write and diagram their own simple sentences. Little more complicated but not that hard. . . yet.
Each lesson adds more to what they’ve learned. So, you really want to make sure they have grasped the content taught before they move on or they’re not going to be able to understand the new concept. It really gets moving when you get to lesson 7 where you’ve got lines going all over the place! Lesson 7 talks about Prepositional phrases(adjectival). This one required more help from me. I had to do several more sample sentences before my children really grasped the concept enough to do this on their own.
How We Used It
We did two lessons the first week since they were simpler. After that it was easier to go back to the one lesson per week. Each lesson is meant to take a week if you follow the guidelines. I think that’s fairly accurate for the time you’ll need to master each concept.
A tip. Have a notebook for each child using this so that they have extra pages. There will be erasing. We decided to work out of a notebook so we didn’t have to erase and had room to show and work through the whys.
Make sure to check out the main blog post on the Homeschool Review Crew blog to see what all the other reviewers thought of this program and the many others that we were offered for review. You can also find the company on facebook, google +, and pinterest.