Review: Progeny Press Study Guide for Sam the Minuteman


Progeny Press offered us the opportunity to use and review an ebook study guide for Sam the Minuteman.  Progeny Press has a variety of study guides, to help you dig into literature and interact it with it more as you read, from a Christian perspective.  They offer guides for Lower Elementary (K – 3rd), Upper Elementary (3rd – 6th grade), Middle School, and High School.    The guides are physical books or downloadable e-books (pdf’s).  Some of ebooks are interactive.

We picked up a copy of Sam the Minuteman from our local library.  This was Super D’s first time to read the story and he LOVED it!  He read it over and over again, even in his free time!  It tells the story of a little boy during the American Revolution.  It’s a Level 3 “I Can Read” book, designed for grades 2-4.  It seemed more like a 2nd grade book to me.   Super D was fascinated with the way the story was told from the perspective of the little boy.  I think he could really put himself in the story!

I printed out the study guide and incorporated it into Super D’s school day.   He already reads for an hour a day as part of his school, so Sam the Minuteman became his assigned reading.  He finishes the book within the hour, so he uses the remainder of the time to work on the study guide.

The study guide is 43 pages long and includes several different sections.  I loved how it took us SO much deeper into the book.  We learned so much more using the guide, than if Super D had simply read it.

The various sections include:
* Synopsis
* Background
* About the Author
* Before-you-read Activities
* Vocabulary
* Cause and Effect
* Word Pictures
* How the Author Creates Mood
* Looking at the Story
* Important Words to Remember
* Thinking about the American Revolution
* After-you-read Activities

There are also additional resources and an answer key.

The Vocabulary Section consisted of  7 words, including revolution, disperse, and bayonets.   It’s a great time to practice using a dictionary and looking up the words!   Filling in the blanks with vocabulary words was fun for him and helped him get a grasp on using the words.   Solving for the mystery word added an interesting challenge for him too. 🙂   I love that the study guide author uses the vocabulary as an opportunity to discuss courage, and pull in a couple of applicable Bible verses.  They offer even more personal application with discussion questions on fear and overcoming different fears!

The Cause and Effect section is great for helping him sequence events and encourage him to think about natural consequences of actions as well.  A little abstract thinking is good for my 8 year old!

In the Word Pictures section, the study guide author introduces similies and metaphors, as well as talking about how the book makes you feel as you read it.  Sam the Minuteman is PERFECT for this because of the way the author actually increases the font size of the word Tramp to demonstrate how the marching troops sound.

The study guide continues with many more sections to help your student dig deep into the book, and expand their understanding of what’s happening.    I’m thankful for the opportunity to review this study guide, because it gives me a perspective of how helpful study guides are!

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Progeny Press Review