Grumble

Let me first state that for one of the classes that I am co-teaching for co-op, we are using Ray Notgrass’s econ books.

Exploring Economics
You know what I like about this book?
The cover.  (What can I say, I think it’s a cute concept.)
You know what I don’t like about this book?
EVERYTHING ELSE.
And by “don’t like” I really mean, “DESPISE”.
Now to be fair you must know that I’ve perused Notgrass books before and I’ve never found any of them to be my cup of tea.  I mean, I would never pick one up and PAY for it.  And if someone ever gave me a Notgrass book, I’d just consider myself a middle man to pass it on to someone else.
Oh, pah-leaze!  If you are a homeschooler you have to be okay with that statement, for I am quite certain that if you were to look at all your options, you would feel similarly about something that I may actually love.  We’re all different and that’s okay.
Anyway, I am certainly coming into this book with a prejudice.  However, I do try to give things a fair go (and consider myself mostly successful as many of my friends count that as a good quality of mine).
Well, my “fair go” has turned into a “gone”.
BLAH!
Things I don’t like:
Too overwhelming!  First 5 lessons are like a summary of economic knowledge — without the benefit of any economic understanding.
(Oh, wait, did I mention that in college I had a double major in business and accounting?  I had my fair share of Econ coursework.)
In fact, of all the lessons we’ve covered so far the common theme has been too much information without a lot of base understanding.
Every lesson has 10 questions.
Wait a sec.  Let that one sink in.  TEN questions for each and every lesson.
I don’t know about you, but when I see a set amount of questions for each lesson I start to think that the author of the questions became more concerned about the quantity of the questions rather than the quality.  (And guess what?  I was right!)
My co-teacher and I invariably come up with our own econ lab assignments because we don’t like the one given.  Or we create our own when it seems readily evident to us that one “fits” there (but instead we just get our 10 questions).
I look at the quizzes and test and see the whole memorize-regurgitate-dump process being demanded, rather than thought and application (and hopefully long-term retention).
The kids in the co-op class seem to have given up on this book already.  In fact, the only positive review I’ve heard is from one of the moms regarding the supplemental reading book.
Tyler is also in this class and has begged me to let him drop it.  If it weren’t for the fact that I think that if one student did so the entire class would leave, I would seriously consider it.
Anyway, that is my review (and I’m not done with the text yet).  If you happen to like Notgrass and want a case of the warm fuzzies, or you want a different opinion, you can go here.

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