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Language Arts

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Language Arts FAQs

What educational philosophies does the Language Arts curriculum follow?

The Language Arts courses are not based on one specific educational philosophy or method. Rather, the creators of this curriculum intensely studied many different philosophies over a period of years and compiled what they felt were the best elements from several different philosophies, pulling mainly from Charlotte Mason.

Does the curriculum include doctrines specific to any certain Christian denomination?

No. The goal of The Good and the Beautiful curriculum is not to teach doctrines specific to a particular Christian sect, but to teach general principles of moral character such as honesty and kindness. The King James Version of the Bible is used when quoting Bible verses.

How do your levels compare to public school grade levels?

Our grade comparison chart is as follows:

Level K: Advanced Kindergarten/Regular 1st Grade

Level 1: Advanced 1st Grade/Regular 2nd Grade

Level 2: Advanced 2nd Grade/Regular 3rd Grade

Level 3: 3rd Grade/4th Grade

Level 4: 4th Grade/5th Grade

Level 5: 5th Grade/6th Grade

Level 6: 7th Grade/8th Grade

Level 7: Advanced 8th Grade/9th Grade

Why do the levels not match public school grade levels?

The homeschool experience usually allows children to progress at a faster rate. The Good and the Beautiful curriculum is carefully designed to pack a lot of learning into a short period of time while keeping difficult subjects understandable. Thus, our curriculum tends to progress at a faster rate than public school curriculum. Children going from public school to The Good and the Beautiful tend to start at a lower level than they would expect, but they also tend to progress very quickly.

Does my child need to take the assessment?

The assessment is highly recommended in order to determine the appropriate level for your child. You may also download Levels 1-5 for free, and the other levels have samples which include all the benchmarks and many sample pages. You can look through these samples and use your own judgment to decide the course level with which to start your child, but the assessment is very helpful in determining the appropriate place to start.

My child placed much lower than his or her corresponding grade level. What should I do?

This is extremely common for children just starting The Good and the Beautiful curriculum. Our curriculum fills gaps and holes that either your child didn’t retain or were not taught in their prior curriculum.

Do not worry about starting an older child in a lower level. He or she will likely go through the courses quickly and catch up to his or her corresponding grade level without missing any important foundational principles. Also, when the child reaches high school age, he or she can jump right to the high school course, which reviews all grammar principles, regardless of what levels he or she has completed.

My child is an advanced reader but behind in grammar and/or writing. What should I do?

Levels 1, 2, and 3 review all the grammar and spelling principles taught in the previous courses. Thus, advanced readers can usually start one or two levels higher than they place if they only place in a lower level because of grammar and spelling. Levels 4 and above are mainly self-directed. If the child does not have a good foundation in spelling and grammar, consider starting with Level 3. Advanced readers will naturally go through the courses quickly. Also, your child can continue to improve reading skills by reading higher-level books on our book list.

What if my child took the assessment after finishing the course and he or she didn't pass to move on to the next level?

This is not common. However, if this is the case after you followed instructions, completed the entire course book, and feel that the child made progress, move to the course for the next level. If you feel that the child did not make good progress, or if the child does not pass the assessment after finishing the NEXT course (two course books in a row), it is suggested you have the child tested for a reading or learning disability.

Note: Usually you do not need to have your child take the assessment after finishing each course. Simply move to the next course level.

My young child placed in a high level. Is he/she really ready for it?

You will have to use your best judgment, especially taking into consideration the child’s handwriting and writing abilities. The biggest struggle for younger children in higher levels is usually the writing assignments. In addition to this, our assessments are limited cannot test all grammar principles; consequently, there may be gaps in learning if younger children start at a high level. It is recommended that you do not start any child more than one level above his or her corresponding grade level (allowing the child to move through the levels as quickly as he or she is able).

Will starting my advanced reader on a lower level slow down his or her reading progress?

Even advanced readers usually benefit by reviewing and cementing foundational phonic principles, which will help them know how to sound out challenging words when they encounter them. Advanced readers usually take less time to go through the courses and quickly reach higher levels. In the meantime, you can help your child continue to gain reading progress by completing the following:

  1. Supplement with books from The Good and the Beautiful Book List that are on the child’s reading level. The book list has a separate assessment to determine his or her reading level.
  2. Read aloud with your child books that are 2–3 levels higher than the child’s personal reading level, switching off every paragraph or page. When reading on their own, children often skip through challenging words. Reading out loud with the parent or teacher encourages the child to sound out challenging words.
  3. Have the child listen to audio books (from The Good and the Beautiful Book List ) that are 2–3 levels higher than his or her reading level.
Will my child ever be able to catch up?

Start your child on the level for which he or she tested and be consistent each day with doing the recommended time for the course (see the “About this Course” section at the beginning of each course book). Then, do not stress! If a child does not have reading disabilities, he or she can start with the first high school course as soon as they reach fourteen years old. It is not necessary to complete Level 7 beforehand. For example, if a child completed Level 5 and just turned 14, he or she can jump to the High School 1 course. This is because our standard high school courses review the principles and rules learned in the lower levels.

Why are some of the lessons so long?

We recommend that students work for a certain amount of time each day, instead of trying to complete a set number of lessons. Additionally, some lessons contain parts that are meant to be completed on separate days, so it is likely that your child will be working on more than one lesson each day. For example, you may start by reviewing a spelling rule and dictating one set of words to your child, and then move to the next lesson and complete a geography assignment. The following day you would return to the same spelling lesson and dictate another set of words before proceeding to the next lesson you are working on.

My child finished early. Do I wait until next year to start the next level?

No, you can continue straight into the next level when your child finishes.

How do I report a typo/error?

Please email our customer support team (support@thegoodandthebeautiful.com) if you find a typo in the curriculum. If you are using an edition that is older than two years, the typo has most likely been fixed and will not need to be reported.

My child completed Upper Elementary A; which level is he/she ready for now?

Upper Elementary A is an earlier version of our curriculum. If your child completed that level, he or she is now ready for Level 6.

New Editions FAQs

Which language arts courses are going to have new editions in 2019 and when will they release?

We have no plans to create new editions for Pre-K, Level K Primer, Levels 4-7, or High School 1. We may or may not create a new edition of Level 3 in 2020.

Level K: A new edition of Level K will release in early May 2019 or later if we have not sold out of our current edition by then.

Level 1: A new edition of Level 1 will release in late June 2019 or later if we have not sold out of our current edition by then. (We do not have a lot of stock of Level 1.)

Level 2: A new edition of Level K will release in late July 2019 or later if we have not sold out of our current edition by then. (We currently have a lot of stock of Level 2.)

Will the new editions cost more or less than the old editions?

Level K will be exactly the same cost. Level 1 and Level 2 will either be the same cost or up to $5 less expensive, but the course books are also likely to have slightly fewer pages than the current editions.

Can I preview sample pages of the new editions before they release?

Unfortunately, no. We will not release samples of the new editions until they release. When the new editions release, we will provide extensive preview pages.

Is the scope changing? For example, will a child still learn all the same things in each level?

Only small changes will be made in scope. The child will still learn the same things in each level, except for some small changes. We are mainly simplifying and improving how concepts are presented and organized and how the courses look.

Why are you creating new editions? What are the changes and are they major?

Levels K, 1, and 2 have received raving reviews, but we continually strive to improve and update our products, and this year we are focusing on these levels. Changes in Levels K, 1, and 2 are major and are as follows:

— In current editions, some lessons take half a day and some take several days. In the new editions, lessons will be organized into daily lessons. Parents should not feel they have to complete exactly one lesson a day. Take time to explore, discuss, and really dig into learning, even if that means you do only half a lesson some days. Some may find they can do two lessons some or all days. However, organizing the content into daily lessons gives a general guide to the parent. If you complete one lesson a day, four days a week, you will finish the course in a year. Also, this new organization will prevent you from needing to jump around in the book.

Poetry memorization and spelling are incorporated right into the lessons, giving the courses less moving parts to complete each day (yes, this means you will no longer practice the spelling charts at the beginning of the courses. However, those charts will be in the appendix for those who would still like to practice the charts.)

The same spelling rules will be taught, but they will be taught differently with less dictation and more varied activities.

Mini books are read twice rather than three times.

The courses will include much more independent work, making it easier for parents to work with multiple children on different levels.

The lessons will include more literature and reading without increasing lesson times, as reading a lot of high-quality material is one of the best ways to create strong writers, spellers, and editors

New illustrations will be added to the courses, and the inside of the courses are being improved visually (the covers will remain the same)

Each new edition will be divided into 5 sections with an assessment at the end of each section. If children do not pass the assessment, they are encouraged to do work for the corresponding unit in a supplement (purchased separately) that will be available for each level. Many children will not need the supplement. For others, the supplement offers engaging, self-directed practice of concepts that should be mastered for a solid reading foundation.

An answer key will be included for Levels 1 and 2 (not Level K). Current editions of Levels 1 and K do not come with an answer key.

–There will be other changes, such as more review of concepts and more practice with homophones, all without increasing lesson times

Will the new editions use the same phonics cards, mini books, and readers?

Phonics cards, mini books, and readers will be the same for the new editions of Levels K, 1, and 2, although readers and mini books may contain a small number of updated illustrations.

Will the new editions of levels 1 and 2 be offered as free PDFs?

Yes, levels 1-5 will remain free

What if I don’t like the new edition as much as the old edition? Can I still access the old edition?

That is not likely to happen. The new editions are going through reviewers who have used the old editions so they can compare, and the reviewers are ecstatic about the new editions. Once the new editions release, the old editions will no longer be made available as PDF or physical product. It is illegal to post or share PDFs of the old versions.