You may have read my review of the Institute of Excellence in Writing’s (IEW) Student Writing Intensive, which I like, but I love IEW’s Fix It! Grammar series. It’s been so easy to use, and my son and I have both benefitted from it. Even better, it’s affordable too.
My son has just finished the first book in the Fix It! series. Titled The Nose Tree, my son had to label the parts of speech and proofread an entire story – one sentence at a time. They have set it up so that my son worked on one sentence per day, four days a week, and he didn’t mind doing that. Though it’s not too time consuming, it’s a robust program that taught him everything he needs to know about grammar and punctuation. The program includes 33 weeks of lessons, and by the time he finished, he had the entire story copied into a notebook, which we read out loud for fun.
Each week begins with a lesson about a different part of speech, and students will cut out grammar cards as reminders of that lesson that they’ll keep with them as they work through the book. By the time my son finished the book, he was labeling almost every word – nouns, pronouns, articles, adjectives, adverbs, conjunctions, prepositions, etc. He’s also learning how to a use dictionary because each sentence has a new vocabulary word to learn. (However, I didn’t require him to write down the definition, if he already knew the word.) He also learned about paragraph indents, quotations and strengthening one’s writing with strong words.
The teacher’s manual includes extra information for grammar lovers, if they want it, or advanced grammar skills, if a student is capable. It instructs the parent on what to ask students as they review their work. I have to admit, it was a great review for me, and I learned more about grammar with this program than I remember learning in my early education.
There are six books in the series, which you can purchase all at once ($89) or separately ($19 each). These come with the downloadable Student Books that you can print yourself, but I think it’s worth it to buy a pre-printed student book (spiral bound) for $15 each. It comes with the cards you can cut out on heavy paper stock. Both the Teacher’s Manual and Student Books include a detailed grammar glossary too.
I’m looking forward to purchasing and using the next book in this series: Robin Hood.
Please share stories about your favorite grammar program for the benefit of others.