Thursday, August 20, 2015

Alpha Omega Publications Review

Back before we started homeschooling and I began spending my days teaching my little ones, I was paid to spend my days teaching other people's little ones. And big ones, for that matter. I've taught professionally at both the early elementary and high school levels. I enjoyed them both, but my heart was always with the little ones. First graders think learning is fun, school is exciting, and work is enjoyable. Teenagers aren't quite as enthusiastic about writing essays and diagramming sentences. While I'm sure I'll enjoy teaching my children once they hit those teen years, I'm glad we're still in the color-the-pictures and sing-songs stage. Three is such a fun age. Everything is new and exciting. My 3-year-old is curious and loves to learn. The past few months I've realized that I needed specific activities for him for schooltime. He wants to be a big kid, too. I was thrilled to be offered the  Horizons Preschool for Three's Curriculum Set  from Alpha Omega Publications.

Alpha Omega Publications is a company that is focused on homeschooling. Whether you're looking for curriculum, exploring methods or styles, needing help, or searching for support, you can find it here. Along with many options of curricula, they offer tips, placements tests, encouragement, and information to assist you on your homeschooling journey.

The sell materials to fit every homeschooling style. Horizons is a teach-led option for K-12 grades. It combines brightly illustrated workbooks with hands-on learning activities for a spiral learning method. Students learn by introduction, review, and reinforcement.

The Preschool for Three's Curriculum is designed meet the educational needs of your 3-year-old. The 40-week course strengthens cognitive development, pre-reading skills, numeracy skills, language acquisition, and school readiness. The set includes a student workbook, a student workbook companion, a Bible story reader, and a teacher's guide.

The student workbook is filled with consumable worksheets that are perfect for a little one. Skills addressed include coloring, matching, dot-to-dot, counting, tracing, grouping, color recognition, one-to-one correspondence, and more. The pages include rich, bold colors and various types of illustrations including real photograph, realistic drawings, and cartoonish pictures. There are 4 worksheets for each lesson.

The student workbook companion assists the workbook. The pages are a slightly heavier stock and also consumable. There is one worksheet for each lesson. The activities focus on more of a hands-on approach and include skills like lacing, gluing, positioning, arranging, memory, sorting, and more. The majority of the pages require the parent to cut out portions before the student can complete it.

The Bible story reader is a small book that has a story to accompany the lessons each week. The left side of the page is a full-page picture and the right side includes the story, Bible reference, thought questions, and a prayer. The stories are short, only a small paragraph, which is perfect for a wiggly 3-year-old. The questions help you expand on the story and help the student to better understand. The story is reinforced throughout the week using the workbooks.

The teacher's guide is a big help to the teacher. Each lesson lists the supplies needed, Bible references, the Bible concept, help with the lesson, memory verse, detailed descriptions of each worksheet, and multiple learning activities. The activities for the week might include language arts, phonics, math, science, social studies, writing, health & safety, music, physical education, outside activity, creative cooking, arts & crafts, and more.   

As soon as we opened the box set, my little guy ran off to admire his new books. He carried them around with him for days and showed anyone he saw. He was so excited to have his own schoolbooks. Once we started the curriculum, the excitement continued. While I'm not a big encourager of formal work for little ones, my little guy is loving the workbook portion of the set. He would happily sit and complete page after page after page until the book was done, if I let him. Many days, we complete multiple worksheets at once. I don't want to discourage his love of learning or excitement for school just because the guide suggests one page a day. I want to focus on that passion and grow it.
Most pages include at least a little coloring. That is the only thing that he doesn't care for. Sometimes he just scribbles a few lines and other times he asks me to color with him. We're enjoying the hands-on activities so much that even the other kids want to be included and join in on the fun.

I appreciate the Bible story reader and all that it has to offer. I think it's cute when I'm reading and he says, "Hey, that's just like at church!" The Truth is being reinforced at both home and church.

We have fallen in love with this curriculum set and now have a new favorite product. He's already flipped through the books and is excited about future lessons. This is one that we will continue to use, for sure.

You can connect with Alpha Omega Publications on the following social media sites:

If you'd like to see how other homeschool families used this curriculum set or learn about some of the other products, please read more reviews on the Schoolhouse Review Crew blog.

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