Denise also explains that the videos and workbooks are written and directed to the student. Although we as parents must know it well to guide them, they must OWN this information if they want to be successful.
A. Elementary Students' Parents B. Middle School Students AND Parents C. High School Students AND Parents D. College Students AND Parents
After reading the first PDF file, "Welcome and Instructions" you will see a PDF links and a videos alternating down the page. There are 6 videos and 6 PDF files alternating down the page. The first PDF should really be numbered with them, bring the total to 7 PDF and 6 videos.
I tried opening each file, reading it as I listened to the video. This did not work for me, and I had to take another run at it. I found that the video helps explain the information in the workbook (the PDF files), but that they don't necessarily break in the same places. This made it hard to follow, for example the first video covers the same info as the PDF linked next to it "The Big Picture". The second video covered the same as the second file. The third video covered more info from the second PDF, and then they didn't match up from there on out.. I found it to be really beneficial to look at the material a little differently than the way it was laid out on the page.
I opened all 7 PDF files, including the welcome, and read them all. You could save or print them too. I would highly recommend printing them and having them to page through as you watch the videos. This way the page breaks and section breaks are not so distracting from the AMAZING information. Then go ahead and watch the videos, making notes on the pages. The videos are not word for word like the PDF files, so you really need to read and watch it all.
It may sound overwhelming, but they were really not difficult. Each of the 7 PDF files ranged from 5-10 pages, and the first one was only 2 pages. This made printing it very simple. The videos were of reasonable length, although the material is a bit slow moving. I agree with the author that for elementary age it is really more for the parents at that point as a child might get bored or confused watching it. A high school student would get a lot of information though, and should watch it. A college student will be enthralled, and probably taking notes!
Pay attention as you go through the text for the letters "A" "B" "C" and "D" as they will show what kinds of hands on assignments the kids in each age group (mentioned in the Welcome and Intro) should be doing.
Most assignments for young kids like mine were thinking and brainstorming, and documenting in a notebook of accomplishments and goals. It recommends they talk about what they want to do someday, and act out a presentation for the family. There were great assignments and links in the lesson plan emails (which are a free subscription for anyone!) as well, and they really do help. For example one lesson plan recommended practicing timed tests, and recommended a site to do that with. My kids LOVED that assignment, as the recommended site was fun and easy to use.
Here's what I liked:
- The this is timeless information, and you can buy a copy once and use it with all of your children.
- I liked that Denise was constantly encouraging the student to be pro-active and think positively.
- The free online lesson plans (via email subscription)
- The links she provided in the text and lesson plan emails were great outside sources for encouragement and enrichment.
- The fact that is written directly to the student, who needs to be proactive.
Here's what I didn't like:
- The way the PDF files didn't quite match up with the videos. But, as I shared above, this was remedied by printing all 7 and reading them together.
- The layout of the first page after logging in, even with the "Welcome" PDF, as I struggled with how get going with this program. I think it would help if there were separate tabs for separate age groups. I also imagine this would not be an issue if you just purchased the physical book and DVD, which would be a wise investment if you will use this year after year.
The bottom line:
This has a lot of great information. Denise has a heart for students and you can see it everywhere on her product. It is overwhelming to try and get started, but just like cooking up an elephant, you just start carving the meat and eventually you can begin to understand college funding in bite sized pieces. It will just take time, which is why it is never to early to learn the ropes. I appreciate that about this product!
photographs, artwork, and other content may not be reproduced or transmitted in any form without the written consent of the author. http://www.homeschoolhighplains.blogspot.com