The Bears on Hemlock Mountain E-Guide: A Progeny Press Review

Progeny Press

One of the benefits I appreciate about homeschooling is the opportunity to integrate my children's education with character building and development.  Even if I agreed with my child's public school teacher on everything, they are still usually limited in the topics and curriculum they are allowed to use in the classroom.  My review today is about The Bears on Hemlock Mountain E-Guide from Progeny Press, something that most public schools couldn't allow because, as the title indicates, is from a plainly Christian perspective.  

Bears on Hemlock Mountain, The - E-Guide
Progeny Press is a Christian company that strives to help students aptly understand literature through their study guides that cover literature of all ages.  The Bears on Hemlock Mountain was the appropriate grade for my son (1st - 3rd), but there were three other study guides that were reviewed by the Crew: 

 For this review we received a downloadable eBook that corresponds with the reading of the book.  We didn't have the text in our personal library so we obtained a copy of The Bears on Hemlock Mountain  by Alice Dalgliesh from our local library, but you can also purchase a copy from Progeny Press for $4.99.  The book is a short 10 chapters, a Newberry Honor Book and written in 1952.  The Hemlock Mountain E-Guide is 35 pages long complete with instructor notes, a synopsis of the book, author information, background information on the book, and over 25 pages of activities related to the book.  There is 2 pages of before-you-read activities all having to do with animal tracks, the outdoors, or hospitality.  For every two or three chapters, there is vocabulary work, comprehension questions and Bible verse application. 

What We Thought 

The instructor notes recommend reading the entire book first before beginning the chapter activities, but due to my son's age (6) I chose to have him read a couple of chapters and then do the activities.  While that worked fine, in retrospect I believe that reading the entire thing first would have benefited his comprehension a little better.  Sometimes it pays to trust the experts!  

Many of the questions are open or discussion-type in nature.  That initially was a great frustration for us, but only because my son would rather have a one word answer he knew was exactly right than come up with a couple of different sentences that would work.  Some doodling was certainly found in the margins.  


As we powered through though it proved to be a good learning experience in patience and qualitative work.  One of the best aspects of this study guide was the Bible verse application in each section.  Sometimes we would look up the verses in our own Bible to see how different translations read it and it always led to a spiritual application of principles found in the book.  As Christian parents, the training of our children always requires pointing out the spiritual aspects of life.  It's extra nice when their schoolwork lays it out for me!

Overall, we had a good experience with this product and I look forward to use more from this company as my children get older!

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