Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Building Thinking Skills Level 2

As a homeschooling parent I always worry am I covering the "bases" am I missing anything? How will my children perform in a testing situation? How do I keep learning alive and interesting without degenerating into just handing them a workbook?  Because of this I am always looking for resources that will help in this areas and still be interesting to my children.
As a member of Timberdoodle's Review team I was given the opportunity to check out the Critical Thinking  Company's Building Thinking Skills Level 2 activity book. This is a mammoth book with 409 pages of exercises and explanations. The book is divided into 10 chapters:
1. Describing Shapes.
2. Figural similarities and Differences.
3. Figural Sequences.
4. Figural Classifications.
5. Figural Analogies.
6. Describing Things.
7. Verbal Similarities and Differences.
8. Verbal Sequences.
9.Verbal Classifications.
10. Verbal Analogies.
Answer guide with explanations for above 409 pages Whew!

I chose my daughter to help me with this review.  She is just beginning to study geometry in her math lessons and is having trouble with spatial reasoning. Translated she does not "get" combining of shapes and rotating of shapes. So we are working in particular on chapter 3. We are also working on her writing skills so we are also doing exercises in chapter 6. I approaching this text as a supplement to our current course work. It would also be appropriate as complete course of study.

An example of an exercise in chapter 3 on sequence of figures is my daughter is presented with 3 boxes. Each is rotated in a different way. She is asked to circle the figure that best continues the sequence. Let me just say my daughter is determined and the chapter has 20 pages and she will probably need all 20 pages. Sigh.

On a positive note, Chapter 6 on describing things asks that my daughter describe dolphin. She wrote:   A dolphin is a mammal. It lives in the ocean in groups called pods. It talks in squeaks...
The answer keys gives a suggested description to help you analyze how you might coach your child as their writing skills progress.

My daughter is in the 3rd grade and enjoys doing workbook pages. The actual grade level is for 4-6. But I have found this a very adaptable book. She likes it and that is what counts as a resource for me in the end. I mentioned that we are picking and choosing our skills but again this would be solid option for assessing your child's critical thinking skills.

The Critical Thinking Company's Building Thinking Skills Level 2
Authors: Sandra Parks, Howard Black
Pages: 408
Activities: 1,374
Black & White: Yes
Binding: Paperback
Copyright: 2006
ISBN: 978-1-60144-150-8
Publisher: The Critical Thinking Co
Printed In: USA
Consumable: Yes
Reproducible: Yes, for one home or classroom

Timberdoodle Co


Disclosure: As a member of Timberdoodle's Blogger Review Team I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a frank and unbiased review.

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