If you have been reading my blog for long, you know we are a Classical Conversations family. What that means is that we participate from September to May (24 weeks) with other families in our Classical Conversations group once a week to further our children’s classical education. In addition to their successful, international group of Christian, classical educational communities, Classical Conversations also has a wonderful assortment of tools to help parents who educate at home, typically with Classical Conversations. This year Classical Conversations came out with PreScripts, a set of 4 books that work on cursive handwriting, copywork and art. As a Classical Conversations family going into our third year with our group, we were excited to add this to our homeschool; therefore, I was definitely interested in reviewing the product when the offer came along.
What is PreScripts?
As mentioned, PreScripts is a set of four, spiral bound books that provide one year of instruction at 4 different levels.
PreScripts Cursive Letter and Coloring is for ages 3-7 and is used as an introduction to cursive writing. If you child has not learned cursive yet, this is the place to start. Student work on finger tracing as well as writing and tracing basic cursive letter. Additionally, there are short, basic art lessons that accompany these lessons throughout the book. This book can be purchased for $11.99.
PreScripts Cursive Words and Drawing is the next in the series and considered appropriate for ages 5-10. In this book, student copy and trace letters and short words from the Bible. The art lessons are built to work toward the drawing of simple figures. This book can be purchased for $12.99.
PreScripts Cursive Sentences and Art Lessons is designed for ages 7-12. Students practice writing longer sentences in cursive. The sentences are history sentences, and match up with Cycle 2 history memory work for Classical Conversations. However you do not have to be memorizing these sentences to use this book. It is a standalone instruction book in cursive and art. The art lessons are a little deeper, exploring depth and point of view and light for example. This book can be purchased for $12.99.
PreScripts Cursive Passages and Illuminations is for age 9 through high school. In this book student copy length, paragraph sized passages from historical documents. They work on artistic illumination by enhancing their passages with their art work. This book can be purchased for $12.99.
What We Received
I was given PreScripts Cursive Sentences and Art Lessons to review. This was the appropriate level for my 8 year old daughter to start with because she has already had some cursive instruction and worked on basic letter formations, words, and simple sentences. Additionally, we will be going into Cycle 2 with Classical Conversations in the fall and I think this will be an excellent way to work on reviewing her memory work while working on cursive handwriting.
How it Works
PreScripts Cursive Sentences and Art Lessons is a beautiful book all-in-all. It is 144 pages and has the lessons compact and easy to move through. The beginning of the book includes a note to parents explaining the development of the PreScripts series as well as a little about how the book was intended to be used. The books is designed to, not only develop the cursive handwriting, but to help the child learn the history sentences that are used as copywork. This means that the child could master 24 history sentences from Medieval to Modern history by using this book. There is a review section after every set of sentences to help explore the mastery level of the student of both the cursive writing as well as the history sentences.
The lessons include 2 trace and write pages for the history sentence, a picture that relates to the history sentence with an explanation of the artwork as well as an explanation of how to draw the work on your own. There is a blank page supplied with each lesson for the student to do his or her own drawing. You can see a sample lesson here of the PreScripts Cursive Sentence and Artwork.
How We Used It
We used it three days a week – two days of handwriting and one day of art. Monday we did a trace of the sentence and then writing of the sentence page. Wednesday we read the explanation of the artwork, discussed the art concept discussed and she drew her own composition. The third day she did another trace and write of the history sentence. She also finished anything on the artwork that needed finished.
Every 6 weeks there is a review of the material with 6 history sentences to trace then write and 2 pages to practice drawing two of the art concepts learned during the 6 weeks.
What We Thought
I believe this will fit in nicely with our Classical Conversations week doing three days a week. It will give us another means of practicing the history sentence for the week. Additionally, our cursive practice will continue, which we started this year via another resource.
I like that PreScripts Cursive Sentences and Artwork is spiral bound along the top so it accommodates left handed and right handed students. And the fact that it is very easy for the student to work independently is nice. The instructions are clear and concise and the lesson fair quick.
The tracing was a nice way of practicing cursive and the artwork going along with history sentence is a nice way to deepen the study of the history sentence. My daughter liked the lesson and thought it was easy to do and was very happy to see the good writing with tracing the sentence. She was a little frustrated at first with her sentences not being perfect when she wrote them but we discussed that it was a work in progress and she got better. She liked being able to write directly below what she was copying. It made it easier for her to accurately write the letter I believe. Overall we thought it was great and will be an excellent fit into our curriculum next year.
If you are looking for a good cursive writing program, whether you participate in Classical Conversations or not, this may be for you. Be sure to check out the Classical Conversations bookstore site to see sample lessons and read more about how PreScripts works.
Be sure to read what other Schoolhouse Review Crew members had to say about these PreScripts products here.