I really love the classical model of education. Since the beginning of our homeschooling journey it has been my plan to have my girls read all of the great books. Even though Katie is a strong reader and probably ready, I’ve been hesitant to jump in, feeling a bit inadequate having never read any of the books myself. The Iliad & Odyssey Complete Set by Memoria Press gave me the tools to start her on the road to reading these classics with confidence.
The Iliad & Odyssey Complete Set includes both The Iliad and The Odyssey books and a teacher guide, student guide, and instructional DVD’s for each book.
There are 24 books (chapters) in The Iliad and in The Odyssey. The Student Guide for each book includes a description of places and characters, comprehension questions, quotations, and discussion questions.
The Teacher Guide for each book includes:
- Background and Drill: This gives you some background and insight on the book
- Discussion Help: Gives you a simple answer to the Discussion questions in the Student text. I often used these answers as a jumping off point for discussions.
- Teacher Notes: Provides information for your student to focus on for the test. People to be familiar with, comprehension questions to focus on, and quotations are included here. There are three tests for The Iliad and three for The Odyssey.
- Essays and Assignments: Additional optional assignments for further enrichment.
In the Appendix you’ll find helpful tools like genealogies, character references, and terminology. We used these frequently throughout our reading. The teacher guide also gives you the answers for the comprehension questions found in the Student Guide.
The Instructional DVD’s are an invaluable resource in reading these books. Mr. Brooks does a phenomenal job of teaching the background and culture of each book in a way that brings the story to life and helps the student more fully understand what is happening.
How we used it:
Since Katie is such a strong reader, my initial plan was to let her read each book (chapter) herself and then discuss it together afterward. Because of the language, I decided to read it aloud to her instead. I wanted to be sure she really got what was happening, and since this is a difficult read I knew that she’d get more out of it this way. We took our time and spread the reading out over a couple of days, taking time to look up definitions and characters and really dig in and discuss what was happening.
When we finished reading we watched the DVD lesson together. These lessons reinforced our discussions when we understood things well, and helped us see things more clearly when we weren’t completely grasping what was going on. Katie had some good laughs about my constant mispronunciation of the names. I think this piece of the program is really what tied it all together for us.
After the DVD, we talked about the discussion questions in the student guide together. Having read the book and watched the DVD together, I was able to help Katie explore the questions further than if she had read it on her own.
Overall, I think The Iliad & The Odyssey Complete Set gives parents all of the tools they need to confidently teach their kids about these books.
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