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Patriotic Penmanship Grade 1 Review by Samantha Massey

Mary Ellen Tedrow
Laurelwood Books
540-554-2670
1639 Ebenezer Rd.
Bluemont, VA 20135
http://laurelwoodbooks.com/

Patriotic Penmanship Grade 1 is a single workbook to help teach manuscript writing on the first grade level.  The book consists of sixty-five pages. This book can be used alone but is in a series of higher grade levels if you wish to continue.  This book uses scripture, hymns, and words from patriots to teach handwriting skills.  It is set up in thirty lessons that start with a short sentence followed by letter practice.  Next you have number practice, keywords, word pairs, and then the full quote.  There are tracing words then room to write on your own.  The price of the book is $12.95.

Patriotic Penmanship is a homeschool directed book but could be used as extra practice for any child needing it.  Each lesson is meant to be used for one week.  The book suggests reading the quote to the child then work on the rest at a speed that is comfortable for your child.  This book is for grade one level of learning.  It is just a bit further than initial learning of letters but does review them in the first of the book. 

There are several pros of this book.  One it is Christian based so that always earns a point in my book.  However this book also uses quotes from famous patriots as well.  I really enjoyed that because it actually gave us some starting points to expand our learning into other areas such as history.  My daughter thought it was neat to see the quotes and for us to be able to look them up and learn a little more further.  Also I like how each lesson is set up, instead of just opening a book with A-Z learning you have actual lessons to work on.  This helped break it up for my daughter so she knew what to expect.  She is dyslexic and never ending pages overwhelm her. Most of the wording was simple and fairly easy to sound out.  The work also progresses through the book to show improvement in word and sentence writing and not just copying letters.  This is a great book for Christian homeschoolers.

I did not see many cons to this book.  With anything it would always be nicer to have some color on the pages or even areas the child could color to brighten up the work.  Instead we chose to use colored pencils to brighten the work up and make it more fun.  The price does seem a little steep for a consumable book of its size.  It is only 65 pages and a few of those are directions and letter writing review.  This book also wouldn’t be good for those that do not want a religious study since it does contain bible scripture.  I also think it would be a good fit for unit study since there are patriot quotes that could lead into more learning.  The two pages that the lesson has are defiantly not enough for a standalone teaching of writing.

Overall I think this was a great book.  If the price was lower I would buy the other books in the series as we got to those grade levels.  However with 4 children and one income it is really not feasible to spend that much per book that cannot be reused or copied. I am very happy with the work though and the help that it has done with my child and I think other people would enjoy it as well.  I think a history buff family would really get some great use and fun out of it as well.  Unit study families could add it in easily to their work.  The book is well written and in great order for learning.  It would be worth at least trying it out once.



Product review by Samantha Massey, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, July, 2014

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