Cricket in Times Square Total Language Guide

Cricket in Times Square Total Language Guide

# 001753

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Item #: 001753
Grades: 5-6

Product Description:

Please note, the 2022 edition of Cricket in Times Square that includes updates by Stacey Lee contains changes that only minimally affect the student using this guide.

Publisher Description:

A displaced cricket befriends a mouse, a cat and a boy whose family runs a newsstand in a subway station. But how will he ever return to his country home?

Category Description for Total Language Plus Study Guides:

Very comprehensive and versatile study guides from a Christian perspective for selected novels. According to the publisher, the focus is on "teaching thinking and communication skills using literature as a base." A myriad of skills are covered here: reading comprehension, analytical and critical thinking, spelling, grammar, vocabulary, writing, and listening (I guess that's the "Plus"!). Total Language Plus is really both literature and language arts combined in one program. Novels have been carefully selected to either display a high moral tone, or to provide a basis from which to teach Biblical discernment. Most are Newbery Medal or Honor books; all are generally thought of as quality literature, have depth, and are high-interest.

One small teacher's manual presents the how's and why's of the program. It provides an overview and philosophy of the program, sample lesson plans for a typical week, and instructions for teaching each component of the program. The appendix contains a writing helps section and a summary of basic spelling rules. Also included here are answers to common questions about the Total Language Plus program. The program requires minimal teacher involvement as students work through most of the material on their own. While some work is done on separate paper, most exercises are worked directly in the student worktext, which is not reproducible. The only condition under which copying is allowed is when teaching multiple students simultaneously out of the same study guide.

The beginning of each book contains a variety of critical thinking activities, correlated to chapters in the novels, which include projects, drawing, writing assignments, and a puzzle. Some of the writing assignments require research or lengthier essays, while "Personally Thinking" questions require shorter written answers to questions that apply concepts in the story to the student's life or require the student to think and make judgments about story events and characters. These activities can be used at any time during the unit at your discretion, but you will probably want to use several of the shorter writing assignments per week if you want to include composition skills in the program.

The rest of the guide is broken down into weekly units. Each week, the student reads a section of the novel and answers comprehension questions pertaining to those chapters. Daily oral language exercises contain short paragraphs to be dictated to the student, practicing listening and memorization skills and reinforcing spelling and grammar. Passages are chosen to emphasize Bible truths that relate to the story or are actual excerpts from the literature. Other exercises practice an assortment of English skills, with Friday's exercise a summary of "problem words" for the week. Each day, students complete a section of their vocabulary worksheets, including the compilation of a glossary of vocabulary words for which students supply definition and part of speech. Vocabulary review sheets are included at the back of the book, and you can assign these to review and reinforce learning. As a culmination of vocabulary work, a final review test and answer key is provided. Daily spelling exercises also revolve around words from the novel. At the end of each week, a spelling test is administered on the words studied that week. As you can see, far more than reading and comprehension is covered here! Using this program you should not need separate spelling or vocabulary programs. Depending on the activities you choose, and the emphasis you place on composition skills, this may suffice as your total English program. Each book contains 5 to 8 units and will take about 8 to 10 weeks to complete. Plan on using about 3 to 5 guides per year.

Guides are available at five grade levels. Advanced high school guides contain more extensive writing activities that teach composition techniques, showing the student how to organize and plan their writing, as well as suggesting what points to include. They also contain oral readings for the selections to incorporate speech and drama into the program.

Lower-priced guides (see Out of the Dust and From the Mixed-Up Files...) are Focus Guides, which "focus" on specific writing skills and omit many of the varied language arts activities found in the other guides. While containing comprehension and analysis questions like other guides, they also feature comprehensive writing assignments relevant to the novel. Focus guides have less content overall than other guides and will take about 3 weeks to complete.

Category Description for STUDY GUIDES & BOOKS:

Please note that a brief synopsis of many of the books included here are provided in our Library Builders section. Study guides for the same book are often available from several publishers, so we found it more efficient to give a description of the book only once.

Primary Subject
Grade Start
Grade End
Barbara Blakey
Softcover Book
Brand Name
Total Language Plus
0.65 (lbs.)
10.75" x 8.5" x 0.25"
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Why did you choose this?
Rainbow Resource Center Store
Will use it this year for homeschooling.
Clarre B on Jan 6, 2023
Excellent whole book method of applying language arts. I would recommend a supplemental grammar program. My students thoroughly enjoy this method of study.
Sue Ann L on Jan 11, 2019
Will use it this year for homeschooling.
Clarre B on Jan 6, 2023
recommended by Cathy Duffy top home school curriculum picks
Noelle L on Jun 4, 2020
Excellent whole book method of applying language arts. I would recommend a supplemental grammar program. My students thoroughly enjoy this method of study.
Sue Ann L on Jan 11, 2019
recommended by friend
Matthew H on Dec 14, 2018
A part of our homeschool curriculum this year, and we love Total Language Plus for my advanced child who needs a good challenge!
User on Sep 5, 2017
Totally LOVE this Language Curriculum. It involves my child in the book, causes him to interact and read. The lessons are very fun to do.
Debi S on Nov 16, 2015
recommended by Cathy Duffy top home school curriculum picks
Noelle L on Jun 4, 2020
recommended by friend
Matthew H on Dec 14, 2018
Does this include the book?
Debi S on Oct 6, 2015
BEST ANSWER: No, the book must be purchased separately or borrowed from the library. Rainbow Resource usually has an option to purchase the book with the guide. We love the TLP program!
5.0 / 5.0
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Rated 5 out of 5
Love this Product
I totally recommend this product. Our child has grasped the concepts of the book while learning spelling, grammar, word tense, etc. It is such a fun way to learn.
November 9, 2015
over 7 years ago

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