We were sent Hewitt Homeschooling’s Lightning Literature 7th grade materials to facilitate a review as a member of the Schoolhouse Review Crew. No monetary compensation occurred and all opinions are my own.
I am incredibly blessed to have helped the boys catch the ‘reading bug.’ They enjoy reading great books (and even some not so great ones) and when they take the required standards-based tests here in Alaska they score in the advanced range for reading comprehension. Yet, I do not always feel like we do enough to truly delve into discussions about the books they are reading. (And, there is always room for improvement when it comes to comprehension.)
Hewitt Homeschooling’s Lightning Literature is a program that is helping me to dig a little deeper with my 7th grader right now. The reading of a story is the easy part for him. It’s all the rest that takes a bit more effort.
About Lightning Literature 7th Grade
The 7th grade level of Lightning Literature has a nice mix of short stories, poems, and novels that both educate and entertain.
Hewitt’s Lightning Lit guides use full-length novels, autobiographies, plays, essays, short stories, and poems to teach deep reading and composition skills.
Unlike some literature programs that take a scatter-shot approach (where none of the literature seems connected) or that try to include too much into one book, Lightning Literature guides focus on a few classics in depth, in a systematic manner.
The grade 7 and 8 guides are year-long courses consisting of a student guide, a student workbook, and a teacher guide.
The Student Guide includes biographies of the authors, vocabulary, comprehension questions, lessons on the readings, additional lessons on composition, and writing exercises.
The Student Workbook is consumable. Each chapter corresponds to a particular reading selection. Within the pages are a variety of exercises to help the student dig deep for comprehension as well as grammar reinforcement.
The Teacher Guide includes a teaching schedule, answers to comprehension questions, answers to the workbook pages, extra teaching help for the lessons, help in choosing appropriate writing exercises, and discussion questions.
Books used with the program are:
The Adventures of Tom Sawyer
Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland
All Creatures Great and Small,
The Story of My Life (Helen Keller)
Stories and Poems for Extremely Intelligent Children.
You can purchase them in a package with the teacher and student materials through Hewitt Homeschooling.
You can find out more about this program and others at the Hewitt Homeschooling website.
Our Thoughts About The Program
There are a few books that you need to have on hand for the course. You start with the story “Rikki-Tikki-Tavi” in the book Stories & Poems for Extremely Intelligent Children. As we needed to wait for that book to arrive, I had R start working on The Adventures of Tom Sawyer.
I suspected he’d enjoy the book and for the most part, I was right. For several weeks of the suggested schedule, the student reads a few chapters of the novel. They then go through reading comprehension questions with their teacher. He did fairly well doing these orally with me instead of trying to write down his answers.
Once the other book arrived, we switched gears in reverse and started the first 3 weeks of the schedule. He really enjoyed Rikki-Tikki-Tavi as a story and nailed the comprehension questions. But, once he needed to start completely sheets in a student workbook he slowed down the pace. Then he started to ‘misplace’ the book in a classic work avoidance manner.
So we are stuck about halfway through the 2nd week as I keep encouraging him to work on the different activities. Some of those activities are ‘fun’ while others do cause the student to exercise the brain a bit.
A few years after R was using this curriculum, I had another son work his way through it. All we needed was another student workbook for him to complete. As he had spent a few years in a public school, it was an easy adjustment. Although, he did grow tired of all the writing!
You can see what other Crewmates had to say about this product and others by visiting the Schoolhouse Review Crew website.
Other Reviews of Homeschooling Resources Products
Below are a few of the other curriculum programs we have reviewed from Hewitt Homeschooling Resources.
British Literature: Mid – Late 19th Century (High School)
Other Homeschool Language Arts Programs We’ve Reviewed
Focus on The Hobbit with Memoria Press Literature Curriculum (junior high level)
Veritas Press Omnibus II Secondary (upper middle school or high school)
Memoria Press Iliad & Odyssey (middle school or high school)