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Trail Guide to Learning: Paths of Settlement Set Hardcover – August 1, 2011

ISBN-13: 978-1931397629 ISBN-10: 1931397627

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 800 pages
  • Publisher: Geography Matters (August 1, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1931397627
  • ISBN-13: 978-1931397629
  • Product Dimensions: 11.4 x 8.9 x 2.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,850,049 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


Hands-on learning methods are built into lessons as drawing assignments, games (e.g, Bingo, Newcomers Game, Mechanics Tool Kit Game), art projects, experiments, demonstrations, cooking, and organizing student-made cards. Frequent discussions are a required element of all lessons. Students create a notebook of their work that does double duty by providing a means of documenting what they have learned. In addition to creating their notebooks, students also do presentations that demonstrate what they have learned.

There is a good amount of reading and writing in the program, but parents are instructed to adjust the amount and methods to suit the child. Both reading and writing are often taught in relation to the lesson theme or a meaningful context to help children understand why they need those skills. Also, these assignments are interspersed with discussion, narration, and other interactive activities to keep children engaged. --Cathy Duffy, author of Top 100 Picks for Homeschooling Curriculum

About the Author

Debbie Strayer received her bachelor's and master's degrees in education and has many years of experience as an educator, consultant, and student evaluator. She is the former editor and co-founder of Homeschooling Today magazine, the author of Gaining Confidence to Teach, the editor of The Homeschool Answer Book by her mentor, Dr. Ruth Beechick, and co-author of Learning Language Arts Through Literature series.

Debbie feels her most important accomplishments are that she has been the wife of Greg Strayer for over 30 years, and a homeschooling parent for 16 years. She speaks and writes about homeschooling topics with humor, honesty, and encouragement.

Linda Fowler received a BA degree in Visual Communications from the University of South Florida, where she also met her husband, Colclough. She subsequently spent 17 years homeschooling their four children, from 1st through 12th grades, and developing an unshakeable appreciation for the power of encouragement. The Fowlers reside in Tampa, Florida.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

19 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Kris @ Weird, Unsocialized Homeschoolers on February 6, 2012
Format: Hardcover
I've been using Paths of Settlement for about six weeks now with my 10 and 12 year olds and we love it! Each day starts with copywork (my kids' least favorite part, but I've already seen the benefits, such as introducing them to unfamiliar punctuation marks -- such as a semi-colon -- or gaining familiarity with how to write dialogue). Next is reading in one of the two related historical fiction books, followed by a read-aloud from a biography.

Then, comes spelling and grammar. I love that the grammar section focuses on teaching the kids to use the correct grammar rules in their own writing and to recognize and correct mistakes. Next up is history or science, on alternating days, taking Friday off as a review day. Finally, there is geography and an opportunity for hands-on learning. The days' worth of lessons, minus math, takes about 3-4 hours.

Some of my favorite features of POS are: a built-in catch-up/review day, meaningful hands-on activities, and the encouragement for kids to think for themselves and respond to what they're learning. There are many discussion and writing activities that don't have a right or wrong answer, but are, instead, an opportunity for the child to think about what he's heard and share his response to it, along with his supporting reasons.

As a homeschooling mom of 9 years who has had experience with a wide variety of homeschool curriculum, I highly recommend the Trail Guide to Learning series.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Buck jumper on January 31, 2013
Format: Hardcover
My daughter and I have been using Trail Guide to Learning Paths of Settlement for 1 month now and I have to say that I am so impressed with this curriculum! It includes all subjects except for Math and each area is covered so well! The student notebooking pages are wonderful and my daughter is learning so much from the assignments. She does copywork, reading, language arts, history and geography every day. Art and science are included 2-3 days a week. It also includes watching fun videos (we love drive thru history!), playing games and many hands on activities like cooking, crafts, and science experiments.

The geography is amazing! We learn about 2 new states every week and do a mapping page and a state info. page on each one. The history is so interesting and well done. The readers are wonderfully engaging and we always read ahead because we don't want to stop.

The only part of Paths of Settlement that my daughter is not thrilled with is the science portion. She's never been into science much (except for animal studies) and is finding it a tad bit boring. I'm going to stick with the curriculum as is for at least a whole unit before I make any changes. We will reevaluate at that time and decide whether or not we will continue with the science portion or trade it out for something my daughter finds more interesting. Other than that I am absolutely thrilled with Trail Guide to Learning! My daughter is in 5th grade and I have already seen major improvements in her spelling, handwriting and grammar after only 1 month on the program. She certainly isn't begging to do school everyday but she does say she enjoys her new curriculum and is learning a lot.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By kelli - Adventurez on July 2, 2013
Format: Hardcover
I have been able to enjoy using this curriculum with each of my boys of different ages. They beg for more! The books chosen to go along with the curriculum can be purchased or even borrowed from the library. Using living books this way, instead of a boring text book is the best way to reach my boys. Their eyes don't glaze over - instead, they ask for more. I will continue to use this curriculum for years to come.

The Trail Guide series is set up to be just that - a guide! You can tweak the curriculum to fit your family and each of your children's specific needs.

Most of all, the boys are retaining what they learn!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Books in good shape. DVD was for Paths of Exploration not Paths of Settlement however.
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