With my oldest about to enter High School this fall, and the high stakes standardized tests looming, I was super excited when The Old Schoolhouse Review Crew was asked to review Greek Morphemes Lessons (It’s NOT Greek to Me!) from Ready to Teach. The review is part of my role as a member of The Old Schoolhouse Review Crew.
What is it?
This is a vocabulary program that teaches over 200 Greek Morphemes over 12 lessons. What’s a morpheme? According to Merriam-Webster, a morpheme is “linguistics : a word or a part of a word that has a meaning and that contains no smaller part that has a meaning.” So, they’re the building blocs of longer words. About 40% of English words are made up of Greek morphemes, (and another 50% are made up of Latin morphemes), so learning the building blocks helps students to learn be able to decipher any word with those morphemes. Rather than spending time learning specific words, this program teaches students to understand the meaning of the parts of words, and then apply that knowledge to a wide variety of words. I kind of look at it like Lego vocabulary – the pieces all build together and are mostly interchangeable. Since one morpheme can apply to a lot of words, it’s an smart, concise use of study time.
How does it work?Each lesson has 5 parts, so it’s easy to complete one lesson a week. I sat with my student on the first day and we read through the instructions and program materials, and then set to work.
The instructions for the week are clearly laid out for the student. This is the framework for the weekly assignments:
Seriously. This is fabulous. The times are pretty accurate, and the workload is totally reasonable.
The student workbook is similarly well laid out. Here is Big’s Assignment A from lesson 3. In this lesson they work through the power point presentation for the new words, then work through 8 or so words:
And Assignment C from Lesson Two. In this lesson they create sentences from the words they’ve learned.
Big’s hand made note cards with morphemes. There are some cards included in the Teacher’s Manual, but she feels it helps her to learn the material better to make her own.
My student is an above average student, in 8th grade, and each day the program takes her between 15 and 20 minutes. She really enjoys the program and is finding it to be a good use of her time. She completely manages the program on her own, and after about a week had the system down pat. As a part of the review I asked her if she is learning anything, and she thought that some was new and a lot was review. Other than the lessons (she’s into lesson 5 this week), she hasn’t really used the material, so I am confident she’ll be surprised in a couple of weeks when we do annual testing that a lot of the words show up and she can used what she’s learned. I am anxious to see if I’m right! For the age/grade range, she thought that any good student in grades 6 and up could handle the material.
Any bad parts?
I asked Big if there were any bad parts, and she replied, “I wanted to learn Greek. It’s not really Greek.” Fair enough. LOL! This is a kid who loves Latin and worked through our previous Greek curriculum on her own…for fun…so she was a little disappointed that when I mentioned she’d be trying out a curriculum with “Greek” in the name it didn’t translate to “learning Greek”. I think that it’s not “learning Greek” is a good thing! This program is the best parts of applying Greek to English, without having to “learn Greek”! I think maybe we’ll add “learning Greek” to the list for next year…
This is an excellent program. Excellent.
This is about our 9th year of homeschooling. I have learned through the years that sometimes the most unassuming curriculum packs an amazing punch and really need to be given a second look. This is one of those products! It’s exactly what so many of us are looking for in homeschool curriculum: great material, relevant subject matter, concisely designed, and easily implemented by a mature student (or teaching parent). I love that this program doesn’t have unnecessary parts or useless bells and whistles, while at the same time it’s visually appealing and completely thorough. I will definitely continue using this program and am excited to add in the Latin program when we finish this one. I will gladly pay for the next level, and I will definitely have my younger student add this in this fall. I will also recommend this curriculum to friends and others looking to help their students prepare for standardized test – or to just improve vocabularies!