Tuesday, October 29, 2013
I'm hesitant to call this a Monarch review (it is not all-inclusive), but I thought our readers would appreciate seeing some examples of our Monarch schoolwork.
Also, I know I have some readers who are skeptical about our homeschool work (you know who you are), and probably curious about our lessons.
If you look at these images carefully, you might see they are screenshots from my iPad. That is deceiving: Monarch actually doesn't work on tablets. Unfortunately. I can see some of the work, but if there are any instructional videos, those require flash player. Also, I can't see the sidebar on my iPad that would allow me to scroll up and down.
We are able to use macs for Monarch, but not iPads. I just used my iPad here, since it was so easy to take a screenshot on it.
This first image above is from 9th grade World Geography lesson, third page of the lesson. I am logged in as a teacher, so you, the reader, can see the correct answer to problem one. All regular lessons have problems to do in the end, so you can see if the student understood what they learned. They have access to the lesson material as they answer the problems. Also, the lessons and problems can be printed, if you or your students would prefer paper and pencil.
I'm not sure what the percentage is, but I think about 90% of the problems are automatically graded by the computer. The rest I give the grade to, thanks to the teacher answer keys included on every problem in the teacher's version. Very efficient!
The lessons are a lot of reading for the student. In addition to reading through the material, there are movie clips, animations, learning games, audio clips, and web-related links to enrich the lesson.
If there happens to be a bug or a mistake in the lesson or problems (rare these days, more common in the early days of Monarch), there is a way to submit feedback on every page. I love that feature.
This second image shows some of the teacher features. Monarch has fantastic admin choices. I can remove a problem, or a lesson, or even an entire unit. There are all kinds of essays, projects and experiments I can keep or remove. Or I can block the rest of the lessons until something is finished.
Monarch has a calendar where every school day has it's work scheduled. You can go by it, or advance at your own pace, and ignore the calendar. I can take a day off, for a field trip for instance, or schedule a vacation week, then reschedule the remaining lessons for the rest of the school year. I can even change the last day of school. Or I can go by the set school calendar. It is super user friendly and flexible. Love that.
In the messages section I could communicate with my students, although we never use that.
Every school day on my firefox browser I have three Monarch tabs open. One has Assigned Work open (what you see above). What I cut off was the left side, that has my four 9th graders' work listed. If anyone needs help, I can go directly into their lesson and see the teacher version, or my student's work under 'Review Student Work'. The next tab I have open is the 'Reports' tab where I can generate a report. This page has a way for me to see any day's work, or generate report cards, etc. I usually keep open the 'Daily Work Report' to see what work my students have accomplished that day. Love checking throughout the day to see how my students are doing.
I can also adjust the settings on what is considered an A, how many tries the student has on any problems or quizzes, what Bible version is being used, etc. Monarch is super customizable. Love that, too.
Here is also an example of one of our electives: Small Business Entrepreneurship. So far I have been very satisfied with it as our fall elective. There are great projects that make the student think hard about successful businesses. I've really enjoyed reading my students' thoughts on the subject.
We have been quite happy with Monarch as our homeschool curriculum. This is our fourth year of using it (after using SOS for our first year). Monarch has a full curriculum for grades 3-12, or you can pick one or more subjects. It is all geared toward independent learning, which is very important to our family. Your subscription is for 18 months, and everything is stored online, so you and your students can do school wherever they are, all you need is an internet connection and your log-in.
Alpha Omega Publications has a sale going on right now: Now through Oct. 31, get 5% off any order, or 10% off and free shipping on orders over $100. Call 800-811-8066 and mention the Fall Catch-All sale to save on Monarch or their other products.
If you have any questions, email us, or leave us a comment, and we would be happy to try to answer your questions.
Alpha Omega Publications is a sponsors of Our Mothership Adventures. We have been given free curriculum in exchange of our honest reviews. You can read our disclosure here.