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Building Thinking Skills Figural and Verbal.....

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Hello Hive,


Have you used Building Thinking Skills Figural or Verbal book? What did you think of it? My son has nearly completed BTS Book 2. I was considering getting Critical Thinking Book 1 and see if he's ready for it next year (6th grade). But now I'm wondering if the Figural or Verbal book would be better for now. Or he could do it over the summer. He's very verbal but he'd have no problem w/ the figural. I think SWB indicates to choose one or the other based on your child's inclination.


Capt Uhura

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Hi Capt Uhura,


I pulled out my BTS book a few days ago after your thread about the Critical Thinking Teacher Guide. I'm glad you reposted about this...


I have the Building Thinking Skills Book 3 - Verbal. I don't have the Figurative so I can't compare.


I do like the Verbal book a lot. There is a large section in the middle of the book on Deductive Reasoning, True-False Tables, And/Or Rules, and If/Then Rules. These are EXCELLENT preparation for Logic.


The Verbal book also includes Sequencing, Connotation (ie: aroma vs. odor vs. stench), Following Directions, Using Maps, Flow Charting, Scheduling, Classifying Data, Venn Diagrams, etc. It's all very well organized and completed in a logical sequence where each new concept builds on the previous one.


My older DD used it in 6th grade alongside Critical Thinking Skills Book 1. We completed a couple worksheets from each section (not all of them) during our "logic" time. I'm planning this sequence for my younger DD (finishing 5th):


6th Building Thinking Skills

7th Critical Thinking Book 1

8th Intro/Intermediate Logic


Hope this helps,


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My son did Building Thinking Skills both figural and verbal. Someone told me that you are suppose to do figural first and then verbal, but I discovered that you can do them in any order. I did the verbal first because the book was longer. The figural was so much easier and my son finished it in a summer. Since the other poster told you about the verbal, I'll tell you about the figural.


It is similar to book 1 &2. I has matching shapes, reducing and enlarging shapes. It does lines of symmetry, classifying figures, to congruent parts. It has all the same things as verbal i.e. Venn diagrams and analogies. I guess it would be more like spatial and mathematical skills the figural teaches. It is a smaller book and can be done quicker.


My older son finished Building Thinking Skills book 3 verbal and figural by 6th grade. This year we are doing Fallacy Detective and Thinking Toolbox. I am done with Critical Thinking Company's books for logic.


Blessings in your homeschooling journey.





Edited by Testimony
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I've used both BTS III Figural and Verbal books with several of my kids. I really like the Verbal book. It's almost a vocabulary book. It really helps kids learn the nuances of meaning, with word analogies and connotation/denotation exercises. As for Figural, I found it busywork for one of my kids, but helpful for another that needed more spatial configuring.




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Lisa, At what age...or point in math did you find it to be busywork? I am going to have ds take a look at the sample before I purchase but this will be for 5th grade. I was thinking of getting figural but maybe now I'll get both. DS will be doing pre-algebra (hopefully).


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  • 2 weeks later...

While the TE is essential for the Critical Thinking books (per your previous thread), I don't recall using the TE for Building Thinking Skills. If you've used other books like this (ie: Mind Benders) and didn't need the TE, you might be ok.


I have old editions (1988) and you can get them for less than $1 plus shipping on Amazon:


ISBN: 0894553003



ISBN: 0894553011


Edited by amtmcm
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WOW I just noticed that these have separate teacher/answer guides which puts the price tag at $50 for figural and $50 for verbal!!!


I'm just wondering if the price is really worth it?


I don't think I used the TM at all for Figural and really can't recall whether I consulted it for Verbal. You just have to figure out the puzzles/analogies as you're grading. ;) You could always look for it used. Are you using it with more than one child? I had my dc lay a page protector over each page s/he was working from in the student guide and use a white board pen.




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