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While I have a decent grasp of the English language when it comes to grammar and writing, I must admit that teaching those aspects of language arts had me worried. I enjoyed learning to diagram sentences in high school, but have boys who’d rather endure long visits to the dentist than do the same. So, grammar and writing have sometimes been a battle for us. Knowing it had been a while since we’d really tackled grammar, I was thrilled to have the opportunity for my 8th grader to review Bridgeway English Book 1 Focus on Grammar and Bridgeway English Book 2 Focus on Writing from Bridgeway Academy.
About Bridgeway Academy and Bridgeway English
Bridgeway Academy offers homeschooling families a variety of services to make the homeschooling experience a little easier and hopefully enjoyable for everyone involved. This includes the ability to have an entire curriculum plan customized for your child or participate in Learning Labs where a certified instructor teaches a class with interaction between other homeschool students from around the globe. Learning Labs are like an on-line co-op with the subjects offered varying with each term. Terms last 9 weeks with many of the courses costing $149 for the term.
Bridgeway English is considered a resource for those high school students needing a complete refresher on grammar and/or writing. Students from grades 7 through grades 12 are considered the target audience for this program which is written for the student to complete on their own with checkpoints for the teacher to grade. Paks are divided into lessons of several pages with all background material provided as needed. Tests for the paks are included at the end of each student book with the suggestion that the educator remove the test pages before giving the student their book.
Bridgeway English Book 1 Focus on Grammar ($23.33) covers subject and predicate, fours types of sentences, sentence fragments, run-on sentences, compound sentences, noun functions, pronouns, adjectives, adverbs, prepositions and prepositional phrases, conjunctions, interjections, and grammar review.
Bridgeway English Book 2 Focus on Writing ($23.33) assumes proficiency in the grammar topics in Book 1. Book 2 covers clauses, sentence variety, subject/verb agreement, grammar and mechanics, writing skills, rules of capitalization, rules of punctuation, proofreading, editing, letter writing, business writing, study skills, critical thinking and reasoning, and learning about fact versus fiction.
Bridgeway English Key ($23.33)for teachers has reduced copies of each student page with the answers filled in to enable quicker grading. The key covers both Book 1 and Book 2.
Our Thoughts about Bridgeway English
Overall, I have been quite impressed with the approach for Bridgeway English. I love that the curriculum is written TO the student and requires really no teacher preparation to implement. Everything the student needs to know is presented as they progress through the pages. The key provides the answers for each worksheet page to make grading relatively easy.
R has not had any struggle with the sections he’s completed so far. The only stumbling blocks in our house have been (1) me making sure that R is doing the assigned pages on time and (2)reminding him that he can refer to earlier pages if he is uncertain about something. The other issue I had to bring up when grading was that he sometimes did not truly follow the instructions, especially when it came to writing sentences. He wanted the ‘short cut’ method of writing just his correction to a sentence or how he’d make a fragment into a complete sentence without writing the entire sentence. I found this to be an issue with other boys in the house and more a matter of their wanting to speed through work than any true difficulty.
While Bridgeway English was written with the high school student needing an intensive catch upon grammar and basic writing skills, I found it to be an excellent fit for my 8th grader and could see my 10 year old using it in the not too distant future.
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