Grammar Island is part of Michael Clay Thompson’s Language Arts series. (We’ve also been using Building Language this year, and have been so pleased!) It is designed to be a gentle introduction to grammar for the elementary student. Ironically, this “gentle” approach also introduces concepts that might be saved for middle and/or high school.
The book is designed in such a way that the lessons are short, colorful, and interesting, but introduce pretty BIG concepts each time. It is far and away the most easy to understand and (dare I say?) “painless” grammar program I’ve seen.
What is Covered in Grammar Island?
In a nutshell: Parts of Speech, Parts of Sentences, Phrases, and Clauses.
Grammar Island consists of 4 distinct sections.
Each page in the book focuses on one concept. You read together with your student, talk about the concept, ask some questions, and then answer questions.
Who Would Benefit From Grammar Island?
I believe an elementary aged child would do well with this book. My son is seven (second grade) and it’s a perfect fit for him. The publisher calls the books “A book to delight students just beginning grammar”.
Notice that word: DELIGHT. They say this because the book is funny, sweet, colorful, and engaging. You can view an extensive sample online. This is exactly like having the book in your hands, so if you’re at all interested, be sure to take a look.
Why Do We Like Grammar Island?
We are enjoying Grammar Island for many reasons:
- short lessons that hold my son’s attention – not too many words on a page and it doesn’t look overwhelming
- humorous stories that speak to my son’s sense of humor – the use of puns and silly names keeps him interested
- an easy to understand Teacher’s Manual – it isn’t taking a lot for me to work through the lessons with him
- fits in a sequence of language arts instruction from the respected Michael Clay Thompson
I encourage you to investigate Grammar Island for your elementary aged child. You will be impressed with the ease of presentation, but the difficulty of the subject matter. It sets a FIRM grammar foundation for your child. I am thankful we found this program this year and we will continue with the next level!
Grammar Island is available from Royal Fireworks Press. The Student Edition is $30 and the Teacher’s Edition is $35.
~ Written by Mary, of Homegrown Learners.
This looks great, Mary! Thanks for sharing this resource with us at Trivium Tuesdays!
Wow! This is a great find and exactly what I am looking for. I can see lots of sweet moments on the sofa with my four kiddies, instead of the “do your school work” moments grammar normally brings about.
I am in the middle of a Grammar conflict now… This program does look great, but I am wondering about the student book. The sample doesn’t show any exercises for the student to do. Are there any or is it all oral? I think I need something just like this, but my son also needs practice problems to do.
Thanks so much!
Ellen, the Bluestocking Belle says
Great review, Mary! I especially like that Grammar Island describes itself as delightful. When I think “grammar,” that’s not a word that usually pops into my head!
Did you find that you needed both the teacher’s manual and and the student edition?
Would you recommend that a 7th grader start with Grammar Island if he hasn’t had grammar in a couple of years? Then I could do it with my 4th grader at the same time?
Do you find that you really NEED both the student and the teacher manuals?