Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Memoria Press The Book of Trees Review

My family had the privilege of trying The Book of Trees from Memoria Press for this review to use in conjunction with our own homeschool curriculum. This is a Homeschool Review Crew Review. All opinions expressed are my own or those of my family.

Memoria Press is a family-run publishing company that produces simple and easy-to-use classical Christian education materials for home and private schools. It was founded by a woman named Cheryl Lowe in 1994. They currently have preschool through ninth grade in most of their curriculum and some through twelfth grade. They also cover subjects in: Classical Core Curriculum, Latin, Classical Studies, Christian Studies, Logic & Rhetoric, Phonics & Early Reading, Penmanship, Literature & Poetry, American & Modern Studies, Writing & English Grammar, Science & Math, Greek, Modern Languages, Educational Resources, eBooks, Special-Needs, and Art & Music. I have also heard very good things about their Latin Curriculum.

For this review Memoria Press sent us a set of their three books for The Book of Trees: The Book of Trees Reader: An Introduction to Botany Through the Study of Trees, The Book of Trees Student Book, and The Book of Trees Teacher Guide. These are geared towards 6-8th graders. We purchased the other two books, that are recommended by the vendor as reference materials for the main 3, separately that usually comes in the complete set of The Book of Trees: The Tree Book For Kids and Their Grown-ups and the Peterson First Guide to Trees of North America. You can purchase all of these books separately as well, but the first three are necessary as a set for doing this unit study. The last two are up to you to purchase as they are referred to in the main 3 books, but you can find all of the information that you need online on the internet for researching the topics.

The Book of Trees Reader is a softcover book that teaches about botany through trees. It contains 83 pages and 9 chapters total, with the last two being for advanced work. These are all short and thorough. The chapters cover: The Beauty of Trees, The Root System, The Stem, The Leaves, Flowers, Fruits, Observing Trees, Photosynthesis, and Respiration. This has black and white drawings and photos throughout to show things in more detail.

The Book of Trees Student Book is a softcover consumable workbook that teaches about botany through trees that is to be used by one student. The prologue of the workbook goes through and tells goals that should be learned by completing this workbook and a Model Lesson Plan that shows what should be done by the teacher and student. It goes by unit rather than by chapter and contains five units, the last being the advanced work unit. Each unit has two to five lessons each with a total of 21 lessons including the advanced work.  Each lesson under each unit has these sections: Reading and Questions, Diagrams and Labeling, & Activities. In between lesson 15 and lesson 16 there is a Tree Observation section that has you pick a tree and observe it, collecting specimens and studying it by answering questions, identifying it, doing some research about it, and sketching its parts. You can do this up to 15 times in the workbook. At the end of each unit is a review of that unit. Unit four has the final exam at the end.

The Book of Trees Teacher Guide is a softcover guide that helps the teacher. It is basically an answer key for the Student Book and follows the same outline as it as well. It has all the completed pages of the Student Book filled out, as well as answers for quizzes, tests, and exams.

How We Used This and Our Thoughts:

We love Memoria Press and their classical christian curriculum for our homeschooling! We have a bunch of their other studies and have found them all wonderful. We've been very blessed to have been able to also receive a number of their curriculum to review here.

The Book of Trees from Memoria Press is a great set for exploring botany with trees. My family loves trees and nature studies! This classical christian homeschool curriculum is fantastic! I love the content myself and enjoyed doing this with my third grader, Teela.

Teela is advanced in her studies and works on a 6th grade level on reading and writing so I picked her for this study. We had a lot of fun together doing this and did a lesson a week. Although the lessons are short and each lesson could probably be done in one day, we have other studies as well we are trying to get through and I didn't want to overwhelm her.

Even though we were sent just the mandatory products in the set I thought purchasing the two reference books would be a good idea. Not only would we have them when we hit a place where it told us to look up something on a certain page of each book, we would have them in our extensive homeschool library. Also, we found the Peterson First Guide to Trees of North America a great sized pocket field guide to take with us when we did nature studies on trees, went on road trips other places, or were out hiking. The Tree Book For Kids and Their Grown-ups is a wonderful tree book with lots of beautiful hand drawn illustrations in color. In fact it has been awarded the Garden Writers Association Award for Best Illustration. I am very glad I purchased these to accompany the main books. If you purchase the complete set of The Book of Trees from Memoria Press it will come with these books as well.

Teela reading The Book of Trees Reader.

We started out with the reading and would read the corresponding chapter for the lesson. Then she would answer the questions individually and ask for help if needed. I would check her answers that she had written down. Then she would do the diagrams and labeling later in the week after we had done some review. After that we would do the activities together and do additional external research. Then for last part of the week we would review again and have the quizzes/tests.

Memoria Press The Book of Trees Student Book

During our studies so far of trees and botany we learned about Plant Systems & Organs, The Root System, External and Internal Structure of the Stem, & the first section on Leaves. There is a lot of workbook work for this study with an abundance of writing and charts/diagrams to label. We like this because the reading seems to stick better if discussed and then written down.

One of the hands-on activities about roots

We, however; loved the hands on activities the best and wish there were more of these with the book work. We love going out into the field to study nature. Teela and I have been enjoying this study so far. There are so many trees we do not know about yet. We cannot wait to delve deeper and do the Tree Observations so that we can identify and learn more of the tree species right in and around our own neighborhood as well as many trees at Lake Sacagawea Park in Longview Washington.

We highly recommend The Book of Trees by Memoria Press! It is a great science curriculum that is fabulous to use for learning about botany and trees. I look forward to using other curriculum books from Memoria Press with my children in the future!

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Read other homeschool curriculum reviews for Memoria Press...
Latin, Nature and Trees {Memoria Press Reviews}

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