Review of IEW (Institute for Excellence in Writing)'s Linguistic Development through Poetry Memorization

We have been big fans of Institute for Excellence in Writing since we used our first product with them last year. I was so excited to starting reviewing Linguistic Development through Poetry Memorization with our boys ages 12, 11, 9, and 5!

We received the Teacher's Guide, the CD's with all of the readings, and a hard-copy of the student book (which usually comes as a download to print, you can order separately.) We also received a DVD bonus and some MP3 bonus downloads. The CD's and DVD came in a leather-look case that's very nice and keeps everything organized and protected, even in a (sometimes) messy family van.

We used this course almost daily. We listened to the CD's in the car, practicing each poem together as a family, before having each of the boys recite back each one in order. Every day, we would add on the next poem in the course, so by the end of the first phase we had learned all of the poems! We also used some of our home time to give each child a printable version of the poem, shown below. While some of the kids didn't use or need this portion, for my visual learners, it really did help them grasp and understand the words they were memorizing.

This versatile program is one of the easiest projects I've done with the boys. IEW has really thought of everything to make it seamless for parents. Much of our use of the program has been on-the-go, with us learning the poetry with the CD's in the car. But there are lots of ways to incorporate it into a busy schedule and it's adaptable to a variety of learning styles.  Here are some options:
  • Visual learners will enjoy the student workbooks which have the poems printed out to read and follow along.
  • Audio learners can listen to the CD's, over and over to retain the knowledge.
  • Those who need to write to retain can also use the poems as copywork activities. It's very simple with the included materials. Just give them a separate sheet of paper to copy down the poems. IEW has a very generous copying policy that allows students of the same classroom to share materials!

As a parent, I enjoyed the Nurturing Competent Communicators DVD. I have been a fan of Andrew Pudewa's videos on YouTube for awhile, and anytime we order a new IEW product, I look forward to his parent resources that help me to understand my child and his or her very specific needs.  I always feel like Mr. Pudewa is bright and enlightened in childhood education, but never coming off as better than the parent. In fact, he seems enthusiastic about equipping me to be my child's best teacher! I always feel more confident and prepared after watching.

The bonus Mp3 lectures were good as well. They included the audio version of Nurturing Competent Communicators, as well as 4 audio lessons on how learning happens involving listening, reading, speaking, and writing. It also included "Ten Thousand Times and Then Begins Understanding."

Here's a video showing how my 5-year-old thrived using this program. It was taken after we studied the first two poems over the course of a few days. He not only memorized everything correctly (even the author name), but he pronounced some pretty impressive words and learned to use them appropriately even outside of the poem. (Funny side note: As I was watching the Andrew Pudewa videos on my TV, my child came in and got all excited. "Is that Ogden Nash?" he asked? Ogden Nash is the author of the Celery poem he had learned, one of his favorites. Since Mr. Pudewa does the audio reading of the poems, my son recognized his voice and assumed he was a poet. Pretty funny!)

IEW (Instutitue of Excellence in Writing) has earned our loyalty over the past year with the phenomenal products that can give kids a jump-start in language arts and speech. This program did NOT disappoint!

I highly recommend you check out all that they have to offer at their website, FacebookTwitter, Pinterest, and YouTube