Across America

Across America

Hewitt offers other complete grade level packages, but this package, designed specifically for second grade level, differs from the others because it integrates all of the subject areas around studies of the states. Math and language arts (including reading) are covered, unlike most other unit studies. Social studies, science, art, Bible/character, music, health, and studying and thinking skills comprise the rest of the content coverage.

The basic package includes a three-ring binder Teacher's Manual that explains the program, describes the scope and sequence for each subject, then provides detailed daily lesson plans. A student binder contains worksheets primarily for math and language arts. In addition to the two binders the package comes with the Across America Reader, and state map stickers. The game Rummy Roots and States and Capitals Songs (map and audio CD) are also required, but they need to be purchased from other sources.

Themes for the units are drawn from the study of each state as well as from character traits, although they are not as thoroughly developed as in some other unit studies.

The program incorporates multi-sensory learning through songs, games, crafts, hands-on learning of concepts, oral work, and listening along with more traditional worksheet activities. Generally some extra items are required for each unit, but a list at the beginning of each helps us plan ahead. Items required are generally easily accessible, e.g., paper sacks, tracing paper, crayons, books, pictures, ingredients for recipes, burlap, and magnets.

You will likely want to purchase some of the additional books or resources used with the program: Kids Learn America!, The United States Cookbook, Colonial Kids, Discovering Great Artists, Meet the Great Composers 2, and Westward Ho! plus attribute blocks and an activity book.

Parent involvement is essential throughout the program, because there is a great deal of discussion and interaction. Parents who like a structured program that lets them know what to do each day, yet who want to provide the variety and fun of unit study for their children should find this a good compromise solution. Since it was written for home educators, the activities are practical in the home setting. Youe can purchase extra student binders for additional students in our family.

Hewitt has published supplements for either first graders or third and fourth graders that come in three-ring binders. These supplements allow you to teach the same topics to children at all these grade levels while still targeting necessary skills at each level.

The Across America Grade 1 Supplement includes a reading program and instructions for teaching arithmetic by using Addison Wesley's Mathematics 1 and Unifix Cubes. Appropriate activities for younger students are frequently described for the other subject areas also. This Supplement includes My Book of States, which serves as a beginning reader, and state flag stickers. You may also purchase a first grade supplement package that does not include the math text and Unifix Cubes.

The Across America Grades 3 and 4 Supplement expands lessons on Bible/character, social studies, reading, and science/health to offer age-appropriate challenges. Time line charts printed on heavy card stock and a U.S. map with transparency overlays are tucked in the pockets of the binder. This supplement also includes the American Tales Reader, a collection of biographical tales about famous people, each followed by comprehension/discussion questions. Both supplements must be used along with Across America; they do not stand on their own.

Pricing Information

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teacher's guide - $46.74, student workbook - $29, student worksheets - $15, reader - $13.95

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Instant Key

  • Need For Parent or Teacher Instruction: high
  • Learning Environment: group or one-on-one
  • Grade Level: grades 1-4
  • Educational Methods: music, multisensory, hands-on, stories, real books, traditional activity pages or exercises
  • Educational Approaches: unit study, eclectic
  • Religious Perspective: Protestant

Publisher's Info

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