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Applied Practice World War II U.S. History Series Review by Tony Silva

Applied Practice
(866) 374-3768
3519 Cedar Springs Road, Suite A
Dallas, TX 75219
http://www.appliedpractice.com/

The Applied Practice Resource Guide for World War II is an effective tool for teachers preparing students for the Advanced Placement exam. The series is not affiliated with the College Entrance Examination Board, which produces the AP tests. It is representative of other books in the Applied Practice U.S. Historyseries. 

The guide includes eighty multiple-choice questions with detailed explanations for each question. There are also four free-response questions and one document-based question done in a format similar to the AP U.S. History exam. Applied Practice provides extensive resources for teaching the document-based question, including sample documents and graphic organizers to help students think through how to structure their answers. 

Portions of the guide are reproducible for classroom handouts. Items that may not be reproduced are clearly marked. The sample questions and answer keys are followed by information sheets and essay outline graphic organizers for the free response questions. Graphic organizers provide a structured way to help students think through complex questions or problems. The parent teacher may want to adapt this approach to her child's own thinking strategies, since graphic organizers by nature are not a "rapid outlining" approach a student would use in a timed essay. 

Sample pages from the series can be downloaded from Applied Practice's website at www.appliedpractice.com. This is a good service to potential users, and it can help when deciding if the content and price are a good value for their homeschool or co-op. The series appears to be suitable for use in a co-op setting, with clear and readable teaching resources. Reproducible content is also useful for larger classes. 

The workbook is comb-bound, and the binding on our sample was very fragile. The advantage of comb binding is that it allows the material to lie flat on the table or desk. However, given how heavily the resource will be used, removing the binding and putting the text in a three-ring binder can allow the pages to lie flat while protecting them from wear and tear. 

Parents looking for an effective test preparation strategy for AP tests should consider the Applied Practice series. As noted above, it's best to "test drive" one or more samples from the Applied Practice website.

Product review by Tony Silva, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, March 2010

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