Thursday, February 18, 2010

Presidential Penmanship (TOS Crew Review)

I received a handwriting curriculum from Zeezok Publishers called "Presidential Penmanship" to use and review in our homeschool.  We were sent the Italic Style Complete Program.

The Good:
  • Grades 1st through senior high school included.
  • Writing is tailored to grade level (shorter manuscript lessons for first through second grade, then Italic style writing beginning in third grade with lengthier copy work with each level).
  • Easy to print and use from the CD-ROM, with all lessons included on one disc (can you say "simplicity?!?!").
  • Lined paper makes sense for the style of writing, rather than separating spaces into halves like typical elementary lined paper.
  • Wonderful quotes from famous people that demonstrate and build character.

The Bad (just one):
For us, the main drawback was that the style of writing from third grade through senior high (Italic) was so different, my eldest couldn't read it.  She did the best she could to do the copy work, and often asked me what it said.  Italic style actually looks really easy to me, and I think it looks like a better variation of current cursive teachings, but it was totally new to her! (Maybe we'll switch to Italic, though!)

The Ugly (truth):
I would love to take the same course all the way through high school with the Manuscript writing from grades one and two, or have them use modern cursive.  I may just have to teach my kids this Italic style, though, and stick with this well-designed program.  Overall, the "CONS" do not outweigh the "PROS" for me.  

We'll see what we feel like doing when we are done with our current Intensive Language Arts Review (a.k.a. The Madsen Method... stay tuned).  To see what my fellow Crew Mates had to say about this product, click here.

*Disclaimer: This product was sent to me for free with the intention that I would use it and review it.  No compensation has been received.

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