Discover Texas is adaptable to a wide range of students. If used properly, it can even provide high school credit—for students like Samantha Stevens.
Sam’s family moved to Texas after 8th grade. Her parents would like Samantha to study the same courses her peers have, and they’re all eager to learn more about their new home. High school courses will go into full swing this year, though, so the Stephens family decides to discover Texas in a single semester. That won’t be a problem if they plan to cover two volumes each month, August-December or January-May.
The colorfully illustrated articles in the chapters on disk are easy reading for a computer whiz like Samantha. She usually prefers to do all her reading in the first week so she can “see the big picture.” To help her learn to read for the main points, Mrs. Stephens adapts the suggested test questions from the Teacher Tips section as a reading guide. Sam fills in the information as she comes to it in her reading then, after a quick review, she runs off a second copy to test her memory. Since she’s seen the material before, she is gaining confidence to overcome her test anxiety. The vocabulary matching sheets are fun, too, building word skills painlessly.
As time permits, Sam enjoys exploring the embedded web links. So many great sites! Discovery learning adds depth to her understanding, and she picks up lots of the details and interesting trivia that make history fun and memorable.
Since Samantha will be earning a half high school credit, Mrs. Stephens encourages her to select from the upper level outside reading suggestions. She was afraid they might not have time to spare for the unit study activities, but some were just too good to pass up. By choosing carefully, they’ve been able to make time for one in each volume.
The Stephens’s favorite part of the program is the Thinking More section. Like most teenagers, Samantha loves to debate, and since she tends to be an audio learner conversations springing from these questions give her an opportunity to shine—and they help her parents gauge how well she understands why these events were important, how they impact us today, and how they fit with the family’s Christian worldview.
Sam signed up to receive new posts to the News Around Texas blog from the Discover Texas website. That’s how they learned about a great exhibit in their area, and the family is making plans to go during the holiday break so they can discover Texas firsthand!