I am going to jump right to it and get into the pros and cons of the E guide we used from Progeny Press. What we liked, didn't like, the process, everything. Hope you get something out of it.
PROS:* Their site is crisp, clean, and easy to use.
* There is a customer chat box even if you are offline- so if you have questions ask away.
* Once you order something or retrieve or gift card, you are able to not only download the study guide but also the answer key.
* These things are downloaded separately! This is a HUGE please. Especially with kids who keep trying to guess my password when I have to log in their time.... *fake cough*
* You can download directly to students computers or the teacher's computer-- this of course keeps things separated for obvious reasons
* You can download this and put into your google drive files for homeschool-- if you use those. I sometimes do. It keeps everything on one spot. Just make sure when you do this, to keep it private so no student information is out there.
* As you read the guide before you get to the actual guide for the kids, I like you can see not only who wrote it and their back ground but also that of the peer reviewers. It was nice to see how many (educated) hands went into making what I am about to use to educate my child.
* About the author (not just the writer of the guide but the book itself). This is nice because it is not always included.
* It gives you pre-reading ideas before you start reading and this is done in the guide as a separate chapter. I like when they do it this way because it is more organised in my opinion to be able to navigate.
* The vocabulary for each set of chapters is given as it's own chapter in between the chapter they are learning and the one to follow. I really like and appreciate this lay out.
* They put in connections into other school subjects other than literature, for example; science.
* LOVE LOVE LOVE that you can type the answers to each chapters questions straight into the guide. This is HUGE! Because not all learners like to hand write. One of mine being one of them. So they can type their own answer into the guide and print later. I really appreciate this!
* Class Discussions: I love this especially with multiple kids. I love having them sit down and do it on their own (not their favourite) and then coming together to talk about it.
* Vocabulary units are 'off the chain'. Yes, I used slang. But love how they did it! They didn't do it just as vocabulary from the dictionary- no. It is also contextual from the story, self reflection and real life. That is much more real than how we grew up learning vocabulary!
* They learn the difference between first, second, and third person narratives. They also have be able to demostrate it.
*Field Trip Portions. Love the ideas they give. Oh my, I can see my kids saying... "but the guide told me to go outside... so bye!" LOL. I love it.
* It is written to not be done quickly. My kids can sometimes want to zoom through things. I like that this is not overly challenging for them but does lessons how I like them. Drawn out and able to learn every ounce of information both in the book and in the world from it.
CONS:- You are only allowed a few downloads of the file. While I see why this is the case (copyright, anyone?) it really puts families with more than 2 kids at a deteramint when they are trying to all do the same lesson on their own. For example, I have several friends who have 8 or more kids. What about them? While most don't have them in similar or same grade level I have a friend who has several set of twins all within the range of grade levels to need to do the same lessons.
- On the "dig deeper" portions, I really wish they did not put: "read this bible verse and comment" kind of thing. While this works for one of my kids, it definitely doesn't for my other child. I feel that saying, "let's dig deep and here is a resource" is putting it in a way that encourages rather being forced to answer the question based on the Bible. I feel that it should be open to spirituality so the other child can explore who they are. I know not everyone sees it that way but those of us believers who believe in allowing our kids to believe on their own (with guidance) would greatly benefit from this.
Overall, this was a very well thought out, well written guide for the book, "The Sword in the Tree" and my kids and I enjoyed using it!