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Thread: Primary vs. Alternate Book list

  1. #1
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    I have a question regarding the primary vs. the alternate book lists. I know that the primary has both “core” and “in-depth” lists, both of which need to be read in order to answer the AQ & TQ. If I were to do the alternate books, does the “textbook” correspond to the “core” and the “supplement” correspond with the “in-depth”? Do the topics covered match? I may need to switch to the alternative list at times and was wondering how this might affect the discussion questions.
    Thank you,
    Renae in AZ

  2. #2
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    You may find that some questions will not have answers in the alternate resources.

    I would do one of two things: ask my student to use the internet to provide the answer to any thing their readings don't include OR decide that you don't need to cover all details.

  3. #3
    President, Lampstand Press
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    Renae,

    As Pat says, Alternates are listed more as "extras" than substitutes for upper grades having discussion outlines. You CAN use many of them for the week's reading, but you should be aware that virtually all of the upper level books have interpretive aspects: the author has selected and focused on certain facts about the subject, and brought his insights. Therefore, some questions simply won't be addressed in alternate works.

    The Internet is a great way to get some holes plugged, but in some cases, you'll find yourself lecturing from Teacher's Discussion Outlines. NOTE: When we write the discussion outlines, we give sample answers in either ITALICS or REGULAR text. The italics text is meant to indicate that students should be able to give a like answer (ours is elevated vocabulary, written for the teacher, not as a word-for-word answer) from their assigned, core or in-depth readings. In using Alternate resources, you may find that you treat some questions as lectures rather than Socratic discussions because your student has not had the benefit of the information (or interpretation) of the primary assigned readings. It's not that it can't be done, it's just understanding how it's intended and then making needed adjustments.

    As far as the text = core correlation, I would say "not." Text books are different than our whole-book core readings. They tend to be to whole books what apple juice is to the real apple. Text books distill, smooth, and process information: it's given in highly concentrated form, not "in the raw" where students need to chew and ponder and then swallow-- if you will. We offer text book readings for those students who need a quick read that summarizes the week's lesson in concentrated form, then they can dive into more detail with our core/in depth readings. Not every student needs such an orientation, but I had especially one daughter who needed it every week, or else she couldn't contextualize her whole book readings, and make sense of which were the main ideas of the week's topic.

    SO, really, text books stand alone in the grand scheme of TOG. Alternates list whole books that may be worthy, but are either out of print, or have been supplanted by books even more worthy, or that fit into the overall Chinese puzzle of unit study, as we have conceived it.

    HTH!
    Blessings,
    Marcia

    No one can do me a greater kindness in this world than to pray for me.
    --Charles Spurgeon

  4. #4
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    Marcia, I wanted to thank you so much for taking the time to answer my question. You were very helpful and again, thank you. Rhetoric is a new level for me this year and I am trying to be as knowledgeable about my options for my daughter as possible.

    Renae

  5. #5
    President, Lampstand Press
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    You are most welcome!
    Blessings,
    Marcia

    No one can do me a greater kindness in this world than to pray for me.
    --Charles Spurgeon

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