First Language Lessons

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sarahjmo

  • Reviewed on Friday, October 24, 2014
  • Grades Used: 1st, 2nd, 3rd
  • Dates used: 2011-2014
We have used FLL as long as we have homeschooled, since the very first day, in fact! I have lots of curriculum that I love, but by far, First Language Lessons is my VERY FAVORITE! I had read some reviews on this site from people who enjoyed levels 1 and 2, but started disliking FLL at level 3. So, I purchased a different curriculum for 3rd grade, Growing with Grammar, at the recommendation of a friend who uses it. Oh, gosh, my daughter and I both HATED Growing with Grammar. For each day, there is a short (TOO short) explanation of diagramming or something similar, and then the student is expected to put it into practice immediately. We ordered First Language Lessons, level 3, and I won't be turning back again. We LOVE level 3! Here are the things I love about First Language Lessons:
1.) Review-some see this as a downfall and consider FLL repetitive, but I think that's great! I LOVE that everything is reviewed again and again. It makes for more "permanent" learning and it gives my daughter the confidence and pride of knowing the material very well.
2.) Memorization-my daughter has memorized the definitions of nouns, adjectives, adverbs, verbs, sentences, and much more. She has also memorized many poems and lists of types of verbs and prepositions, etc, which may sound boring, but they really do make it fun. And, again, it helps my daughter's confidence!
3.) Amount of writing-I love that there is almost no writing in the first 2 levels. My son (currently 1st grade) can do this and learn it well even though writing and reading haven't become strong for him yet. He is thriving in grammar with this!
4.) Script-I have enjoyed the scripted nature, especially as I was just starting to homeschool. I love that it's "open and go," but that these days, it's easy for me to just look on her workbook with her and talk through the lesson.
5.) Time-it doesn't take long to do a lesson (5 minutes in level 1, 10 minutes in level 2, 15 minutes in level 3, approximately). It's short, BUT I feel like they are learning a ton in that short amount of time, and that is key for me. I'm not willing to "do school" breakfast until dinner, so I love a curriculum that is a great return on investment of time.
6.) Gentle-I like that they don't present a concept once and expect the student to have it mastered. The student will learn a PIECE of the concept one day, and then elaborate on it until they have the whole concept mastered. I believe that this makes for more complete learning, and learning that will LAST in their brains.
7.) Price-Levels 1 and 2 can be purchased for under $15! Level 3 was a bit more since we needed a workbook as well.
It is clear by now that I LOVE First Language Lessons, and would whole-heartedly recommend it to ANYONE looking for a quality Grammar program!

Katewalker414

  • Reviewed on Thursday, April 10, 2014
  • Grades Used: 1
  • Dates used: 2012-2013
We really wanted to like this book but it wasn't a good fit for us. Both of my children were soon bored and frustrated by the slow pace. The first FLL book may be perfect for children who need a gentle introduction to English, but it is probably TOO gentle for average or quick learners. We switched to Rod & Staff English for second grade.

On a positive note, my children enjoyed the poems in FLL.

kaybee

  • Reviewed on Friday, May 25, 2012
  • Grades Used: 1st-2nd
  • Dates used: 2011-2013
I used FLL 1 with my K/1st grader and FLL 1 and 2 with my 2nd grader (having just come out of PS, I wasn't sure how much grammar he had studied).
I actually really like the scripted nature of it. My 2nd grader retained the info really well, and he just read over my shoulder the things that he needed to.

I would recommend FLL 1 and 2, but I wasn't a big fan of FLL 3, so we didn't do 4. FLL 3 was too workbook heavy, and extremely repetitive when it came to diagramming sentences. What was acceptable and not a big deal in FLL 1 (repeating the definition of a noun lol) became tiresome and laborious in FLL 3 (repeating how to diagram a specific type of sentence).

missy3

  • Reviewed on Friday, February 10, 2012
  • Grades Used: 1-4
  • Dates used: 2006-2012
We have used all of the FLL series. Levels 1 and 2 were great! By level 3 we started slowing down as the lessons became longer and dryer. We are currently on level 4 and I have decided enough is enough. My daughter and I are both bored to tears and dread the lessons. Also, this is the last book in the series, leaving me to find a new curriculum anyway.

The main reason I was drawn to these books is the way the teaching dialog was written out. Which is great when you are new to homeschooling. Now that we are in year 5 it seems to have become a hindrance.
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