In our home, literature is the foundation of our studies. Deep, thought provoking discussions are a frequent visitor to our dinner table. One aspect we were missing however was composition. This weak area was helped when a couple of years ago, we used Lightning Literature and Composition – Grade 8. It was enjoyed and beneficial to my daughter, Rebekah. Currently, my daughter, Mary, is using Lightning Literature and Composition: British Early – Mid 19th Century Student’s Guide that Hewitt Homeschooling sent us to review. We also have the Lightning Literature and Composition: British Early – Mid 19th Century Teacher’s Guide. We have not been disappointed.
Lightning Literature and Composition: British Early-Mid 19th Century
There are several Lightning Literature courses to choose from at Hewitt Homeschooling. American Lit, British Lit, Shakespeare are some of the selections designed for high school study (grades 9 -12). After much discussion with my daughter, Mary (14), we selected British Early – Mid 19th Century as this time period appealed to her.
This Lightning Lit course covers such works as Jane Eyre, Ivanhoe, and Pride and Prejudice. The complete novels are used in this study. Along with novels, your student will study poetry, short stories, and essays.
The Student’s Guide – Within this guide, the student will find lessons that cover: description, persuasive writing, setting, character and other literary devices. For the various literary works, author information, comprehension questions, discussion questions, and writing assignments are given.
Example of Writing Assignments:
*Describe yourself in third person. Include at least one example of each of the methods described in the lesson…
*Write a paper in which you describe a time when you met someone for the first time.
*Choose one event from Jane Eyre. Retell this event using a first-person perspective, but choose a character other than Jane.
The high school level guides are one semester courses. However, if a student needs to take the course at a slower pace, it can flex in that manner. The student’s guide gives a schedule for both a one semester or full year option. For the student who may need an extra challenge, additional reading selections are included.
In the appendix of the guide, Project Suggestions in areas such as art, music, science, and history are given. Perhaps your student would like to draw the joust scene from the end of Ivanhoe or look into the health effects of urbanization (dealing with poetic works of Blake). These projects could aid in tying the literature course with your history studies or letting the literature course be the foundation of other studies.
Along with the Student Guide, you will naturally need the literary selections. The full novels can be purchased from Hewitt Homeschooling or an outside vendor. For those on a tight budget, you are likely to find all of the selections for this course at your local library. The Student Guide does contain within the text the poetry, essays, and short story selections.
British Early – Mid 19th Literature is a high school course but there are a few things to consider when placing your child. It is recommended that the student taking this course: has already completed a high school level Lightning Lit course, who is studying world history, and has an interest in British literature. Parents and students, of course, can use their own judgements in placement.
The Teacher’s Guide – For this British Literature course, the Teacher’s Guide is not a requirement but can be a helpful resource. This guide is not a bound book but a packet of three hole-punch papers; ready to place into a binder.
In the Teacher’s Guide you will find grading tips for non-fiction and fiction writing. Areas to look at for grading are: grammar and mechanic, content and focus, style, etc. Forms are giving to help track grades and calculate a final score. Answers to comprehension questions are included which is helpful if you are not familiar with the literary selections and are not able to read them. For easy reference the writing exercises, discussion questions and project suggestions are included as well.
Our Thoughts on Lightning Literature
As a parent: The high school level course has only confirmed my previous thoughts on Lightning Literature. I love how the courses are put together and that my students are able to use it independently. Our home is never short on books and we read through them quickly. I appreciate Lightning Literature guiding my students on how to analyze and study a writing. It helps sharpen the skills of noting the importance of setting, the message the author is trying to convey, and more.
It speaks loudly about the quality of Lightning Literature to see how my students love the courses. As soon as this British Lit course arrived, my daughter grabbed it, looked it over, and had her first week planned out according to the schedule. I can’t keep up with her! She handled acquiring the selections, reading them, and jumping right into the exercises and assignments. She has found some aspects challenging but literature is still the first subject she tackles daily.
We did go against the recommendations for the course. Mary is not studying world history and she has not completed a high school level Lightning Literature course. However, she loves British literature and I felt that going with an area of interest would provide better results than going with what lined up with her American history studies. For us, it was the right choice.
She had previously read Pride and Prejudice and breezed through the comprehension questions and other assignments. Ivanhoe has provided a challenge. She is taking it at a much slower pace but that is fine. She is being stretched and it will be to her benefit. She needs that challenge or interest will be lost.
Once a week, I read over her writing assignments and we discuss. The hardest part for me is grading the writing. This is when I am very thankful for the grading resources included in the teacher’s guide!
Mary’s Thoughts as a Student
“I have really enjoyed using Lightning Literature. I chose the British Literature course because I like the books that are used. Well, I don’t really like Ivanhoe and the comprehension questions for it are hard sometimes. It has been really easy to use and some of the writing exercises can be challenging. One helpful thing I have learned is how to use dialogue to help build my characters. I think I would like to do another Lightning Literature course.”
Pricing and Purchasing Information
Lightning Literature is not only a well written resource but it is affordable
You can also purchase this course as a pack. The Lightning Literature British Early – Mid 19th Century Pack includes the Student’s Guide, Teacher’s Guide, and the four novels needed. $48.39
Lightning Literature and other resources from Hewitt Homeschooling were reviewed by fellow Schoolhouse Review Crew members. Take a moment and see what they have to say!