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River of Voices from Blossom and Root


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Ok, looks like there are hands on activities in one of the books you would use. And lots of video links for visual learners. Interesting....

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I purchased it, but haven't implemented it yet. I am not sure how I will use it. It is a massive wall of text to read through.

From what I have gathered so far, a typical schedule would be to do one lesson per week with the readings and activities done over the course of the week. There is a gentle, standard and advanced pathway with assigned spines. Additionally, there is a huge list of additional books for those who want to dig deeper. As you go through each lesson you will find assigned readings, suggested additional readings and suggested read alouds, links to multimedia such as YouTube videos and websites for more information, and activity suggestions. Activities seem to be things like craft suggestions from the A Kid's Guide to Latino History and A Kid's Guide to Native American History, mapping, recipes, further research topics, etc. The student also keeps a notebook.

Overall this curriculum mainly seems to be a curated list of resources on the history of the US, however the resources suggested are less Eurocentric than those in many other US history curricula out there. The way it is presented is a bit overwhelming because it is trying to be a one size fits all curriculum. That said, I can definitely find a place for this even if I don't use it as scheduled because there are just so many good resources linked throughout. 

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Another thing -- there is no way I could hand this to my 8th grader and expect him to figure out what to do. I don't think it is designed to be that way, but it makes my eyes cross so I know my son lose his mind trying to work through it. I definitely see this as the type of curriculum that you work through together, though I am sure there are some extremely independent and mature older students who could do it.

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3 minutes ago, librarymama said:

Overall this curriculum mainly seems to be a curated list of resources on the history of the US, however the resources suggested are less Eurocentric than those in many other US history curricula out there. The way it is presented is a bit overwhelming because it is trying to be a one size fits all curriculum. That said, I can definitely find a place for this even if I don't use it as scheduled because there are just so many good resources linked throughout. 

This is how it feels to me. I love the idea of it, but it seems like I would need to take the teacher's guide and then write all new plans based on it in order to streamline it, in which case it makes the point of buying the guide in the first placer no longer seem worth it for me (because I would be buying it to make things easier for me). I do really like what they are doing though and am interested to hear how people are liking their materials.

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1 minute ago, kand said:

This is how it feels to me. I love the idea of it, but it seems like I would need to take the teacher's guide and then write all new plans based on it in order to streamline it, in which case it makes the point of buying the guide in the first placer no longer seem worth it for me (because I would be buying it to make things easier for me). I do really like what they are doing though and am interested to hear how people are liking their materials.

 

Yes, exactly! I would have to basically write out all my son's lessons for him separately. I may end up sprinkling bits of the curriculum into his work throughout the year, but it is definitely not an open and go for an independent child. 

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We will be using it this year in conjunction with Build Your Library Level 5. Some of the books overlap.

ROV is definitely a huge wall of text to sort through. I just printed it yesterday and I'm diving in this week.

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For those of you who are using it, did you find any good reviews? I am interested to hear how other people have used it. I have downloaded the sample at least 3 times! I am trying to put together a beginning American history for my K and 2nd, but I think we are just going to read books in roughly chronological order because I can't find what I am looking for already put together. The idea for this curriculum sounded so good, but I was concerned that (at least for the youngest grouping), there seemed to be only 3 spines, 2 of which were activity books. I know there are more books recommended in the guide, but I couldn't figure out if the heart of the program was crafts and activities or literature.

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It's fairly new, so there aren't a ton of reviews yet.

My kids are older than yours, but my impression of the curriculum is that it really can be what you want it to be. There are activities/crafts and there are tons of books recommended. You get full booklist once you purchase. Only the spines are listed in the sample. But really, you can choose if you wanted to do more activities, or more videos (lots of clickable links included), or read more picture books.

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4 hours ago, gck21 said:

For those of you who are using it, did you find any good reviews? I am interested to hear how other people have used it. I have downloaded the sample at least 3 times! I am trying to put together a beginning American history for my K and 2nd, but I think we are just going to read books in roughly chronological order because I can't find what I am looking for already put together. The idea for this curriculum sounded so good, but I was concerned that (at least for the youngest grouping), there seemed to be only 3 spines, 2 of which were activity books. I know there are more books recommended in the guide, but I couldn't figure out if the heart of the program was crafts and activities or literature.

I'm looking at a sample of A Kid's Guide to Native American History, and it definitely isn't just crafts/activities. There is information, then  craft, then more information, then a craft, etc. 

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On 7/31/2020 at 9:59 PM, Ktgrok said:

I'm looking at a sample of A Kid's Guide to Native American History, and it definitely isn't just crafts/activities. There is information, then  craft, then more information, then a craft, etc. 

This sounds like the Book Seeds I just downloaded.  I got the free one about "The Three Sunflowers."  There are several others I'm interested in, but we already have a sufficient schedule for the year.  I don't want to overload our week!  😅  I'm afraid that if I buy several of these Book Seeds that I would just be banking them for "when we have time," "next year," or something like that.  "Next year" sure fills up quickly that way!  Have you tried the Book Seeds?

Also they are having a 30% off sale right now on everything!

Edited by JoyKM
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I'm interested in this as well. The content looks great but I cannot, will not, don't wanna write out lesson plans for my older kid. It would be awesome if the author, or someone, separated out the levels so an independent kid could follow along independently. So we personally went with Beautiful Feet for now (History of Science, not comparable content) because my third grader can follow that manual on his own. Still a great balance of literature, notebooking, and hands on stuff but I only have to glance over his shoulder.

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I looked over and over this because we are doing US History this year. 

Then I looked over to BYL again, the 5th grade level of US History has been rewritten and it also gives the multicultural perspective. 

I decided against both as I'm terrible at following schedules and pick and choose anyway. 

So, fwiw anyone looking for multicultural US history perspective River of Voices is not the only option.

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4 minutes ago, soror said:

I looked over and over this because we are doing US History this year. 

Then I looked over to BYL again, the 5th grade level of US History has been rewritten and it also gives the multicultural perspective. 

I decided against both as I'm terrible at following schedules and pick and choose anyway. 

So, fwiw anyone looking for multicultural US history perspective River of Voices is not the only option.

So, uh, what did you go with? (if you don't mind sharing...I am also terrible at schedules for stuff like this.)

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Just now, barnwife said:

So, uh, what did you go with? (if you don't mind sharing...I am also terrible at schedules for stuff like this.)

I'm sticking with Hakim for a spine, the condensed as that is what I have, I'm using books from BYL and a hodge podge of others- some picture books, very little historical fiction, NF from varied sources.

I have the Before 1491 that RoV uses as one of its first spines as I used it with my ds but I'm doing US history now with DD2-5th and Dd3- 2nd- it is too much for them. Likewise I'm skipping some of the books suggested by BYL as they are a lot deeper than they are ready for. I went through and read reviews and looked at samples of all the ones I don't have to pick the ones I thought would fit best. It is totally different than what I did with my son and my older daughter. I went really heavy with ds and light with dd1, I'm trying to find that balance with these 2.

I only plan 6 weeks at a time and have been getting my bearings this first session (we finish week 6 next week). I started out using The Complete Book of US History as our spine but I went to Hakim as I wanted more detail. I don't care for the bits and pieces of so many different books at one time like BYL or RoV does, it drives me nuts. So, I'm keeping to 1 spine and supplementing with 1 book at a time, I don't want to be reading 3 or 4 different books at a time it feels too disjointed. 

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1 hour ago, soror said:

I'm sticking with Hakim for a spine

What are your favorite things about her series?  I'm looking at it for when my kids are in middle school (and I hope to change up some of the way we do school) and am thinking to start snapping up volumes used.  

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1 hour ago, JoyKM said:

What are your favorite things about her series?  I'm looking at it for when my kids are in middle school (and I hope to change up some of the way we do school) and am thinking to start snapping up volumes used.  

I find it engaging for a textbook, easy to read and understand. And it isn't whitewashed to the degree a lot of US history is in many books (especially hs books).

Edited by soror
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3 hours ago, soror said:

I looked over and over this because we are doing US History this year. 

Then I looked over to BYL again, the 5th grade level of US History has been rewritten and it also gives the multicultural perspective. 

I decided against both as I'm terrible at following schedules and pick and choose anyway. 

So, fwiw anyone looking for multicultural US history perspective River of Voices is not the only option.

I could have written this exactly. Literally. 

3 hours ago, soror said:

I don't care for the bits and pieces of so many different books at one time like BYL or RoV does, it drives me nuts. So, I'm keeping to 1 spine and supplementing with 1 book at a time, I don't want to be reading 3 or 4 different books at a time it feels too disjointed. 

Same. I haven’t finished planning, but I think this is the way I’m going. 

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