Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Fix It Grammar from IEW *Review #hscrew

Fix It! Grammar Review

Institute for Excellence in Writing (IEW) is well known for teaching writing skills for kids of all ages. We continue to struggle with writing, especially in my boys. We opted to try Fix It! Grammar: The Nose Tree [Book 1] (Teacher Manual) $19 and  Fix It! Grammar: The Nose Tree [Book 1] (Student Book) $15 which is the first book in the series. It is geared for grades 3 and up.

Fix It! Grammar Review
Because my 12 year old is a very reluctant writer, I chose to start with book one, The Nose Tree so that we wouldn't miss anything in the teaching. We have used grammar programs over the years and I am really not sure what has 'stuck' and not. The premise behind the Fix It Grammar program is that he is going to be rewriting a complete story, basically one sentence at a time, utilizing the techniques he learns to 'fix it' for errors. In the process he learned the basics like nouns, verbs, articles and more. We also learned about punctuation including quotations.
We were encouraged to make a binder for all of our information. It is divided into 4 sections.
  • Fix Its
  • Grammar Glossary
  • Rewrite
  • Vocabulary
The binder works really well if you utilize the pdf format of the student workbook.  The binder takes each section of the student book and places it in the binder. The Fix It's section includes the grammar cards we cut out, along with the daily exercises of marking the Fix It's in the workbook.
The Grammar Glossary section is where you put the rest of the student book. Since mine is already bound in a spiral ring, we opted to just not use this section of the binder. I wanted to keep the student workbook intact.
The rewrite section is where you put the lined paper as they rewrite the story. Finally the Vocabulary section is where we are looking up words daily from our rewrite.

The program is broken down into 4 days for each week. We started out so simply that we would do 2 days at one time. I didn't want to overwhelm him, and tried to judge his level of interest as we proceeded. It honestly only takes 10-15 per lesson for them to complete. It allowed us a very easy place to start to give him the confidence boost he needed. We do utilize other grammar programs, but they seem to come with frustration that then gets thrown to the side. The Fix It Grammar allowed us to work through several key aspects during our review time, even if just for review more than learning something new. We did learn a few new things though as well. It gave us time to have the ideas filter in by not only fixing it on the paper, but also by rewriting it in his own hand, reinforced what he just learned.

I really loved the vocabulary section. As I just had a senior in high school take the ACT, I know that vocabulary knowledge really is a big thing to know. With only one word per lesson, it again is a simple way to incorporate larger words into his vocabulary without overwhelming him to look up a lot of words.

There are cardstock cards that come in the student book that has all of the grammar rules on them. These fit into our first section of the book in an envelope. We utilize each weeks cards for review.

There is a placement test you can take to see what level book your student would start with best.

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