The Bentz Test Laboratory has been using SpeedyPrep to prepare for the Introductory Psychology CLEP Test. Our tester is a Junior in high school this year, with several Dual Credit college courses on his transcript already.
SpeedyPrep is an online, CLEP test preparation, subscription program. The CLEP is the College Level Examination Program, which is administered by the College Board, makers of the SAT. CLEP tests are a way to help earn college credit on your own by preparing for and passing a standardized test that demonstrates you have college-level knowledge of that subjet.
SpeedyPrep offers 24 courses that will help your student study effectively to pass the CLEP exam and earn college credit. CLEP tests are under $100 that's a small fraction of the cost of college tuition.Trust me on this one...we have a freshman in college this year, his credits are over $800 each!
SpeedyPrep courses are designed to meet the College Board requirements, and they even guarantee you'll pass the CLEP test if you get at least a 90-100% proficiency in their study sessions and take the test within 90 days. Pretty impressive.
This is a very user friendly program. After logging in, you can choose from many courses, and you can even work in multiple courses at the same time. The program remembers your progress for you.
This program utilizes a "Flashcard" approach. Each study section has fill-in-the-blank or multiple choice questions on content that could be included on the test.
Students are not expected to automatically know an answer, answers can be left blank if unknown (which made my tester stress out a little...)
If the answer is blank or incorrect, the program presents a "flashcard" with the correct answer and a short explanation, a picture or diagram, chart or even video explanation.
The videos are short (usually under 5 minutes), blackboard style presentations of the material to be mastered.
The goal is to continue, with repetition, each section until achieving a 90-100% mastery. Questions are repeated for reinforcement. The progress bar gives you a visual of where you are at in the course.
The study sessions are designed to help you review information that has already been learned, in order to study for the CLEP test.
Simply reading the questions, or watching the accompanying videos will NOT be enough to pass the CLEP alone.
My tester "thought" he might know enough to pass the Analyzing and Interpreting Literature CLEP test. SpeedyPrep quickly showed him...he did NOT. The questions are very challenging, and very specific to certain works of literature. This was valuable information for his dual credit and college planning.
He really enjoyed exploring a variety of courses to see what he already knows by answering the questions. In fact, the entire family got involved in it. I was disappointed by how many questions I missed in Intro Psych - especially since I have a BA in it! Shortened answers are recognized, but misspellings are not. Once again, spelling counts :-)
He spent most of his time with the videos. He really enjoyed watching videos that covered information he did not already know, and using it to increase his overall knowledge of a particular subject. He still loves to learn, score one for homeschooling!
I have also been exploring SpeedyPrep's courses on my own as an outline of information to be sure we cover in future high school classes at Bentz Academy. This is a very helpful tool for homeschool moms that find themselves worrying they are not covering the right topics in high school.
Overall, my tester and I were very impressed with this program. It's a very useful tool for CLEP test study and preparation. One word of warning though, before investing the time in studying, make sure your student's future college will grant credits for CLEP tests. Not all of colleges do - check a list from College Board here . You can also see the minimum scores a school may require.
Since we were blessed to get a six month subscription, my college kid plans on doing some SpeedyPrep this summer and taking the CLEP exam to earn credits and save on tuition.
This is a one-year, online course that will introduce your 6th-12th grade students to the valuable computer skills they need to know. It's similar to what is covered in "Information Technology" classes - you can check out the syllabus here.
My tester is 14 and in 8th grade. We are not huge technology users for our younger students, but by the time they hit high school, we want them to have a good mastery of how to use technology. This course is a great fit.
This program is super easy to set up and use. Both parent and student set up logins. Once logged in, the student and pick and choose the topic they want to work on, or just start at the beginning like my tester did. It's designed to be completed by the student independently and their own pace, and there is NO prep for mom!
25 chapters an additional supplemental lessons cover a broad range of topics from very basic introduction to computers, using spreadsheets, all the way to careers in computer technology. Social media and working with digital images are included as well. This is a very comprehensive program, and could easily count for high school credit. In fact, all of our high school students are working through this program!
Chapters are broken down into lessons. Each lesson includes a video and text component, plus a quiz. My tester liked the videos, but is much more of a visual learner, so preferred the text. I like that the program includes both.
The quizzes allow for multiple tries, so if a concept isn't mastered - they can go back and redo it. Hands-on activities to complete with a mid-term and final exam complete the course.
User reports allow the student to see their progress, as well as grades from their automatically graded quizzes and tests.
Overall, my tester was impressed with the program. The new updated look is very clean and professional. I was impressed by the volume and quality of the information presented. This is a well-designed, easy-to-use program that takes the mystery out of technology.
CompuScholar, Inc. offers other must-have technology courses you will want to check out:
This page-turning, 375 page softcover book tells the story of Joshua 9 & 10 from an entirely untold side of the story - the Gibeonites! The Bentz Test Laboratory enjoyed this one from the top down (ages 40-something to age 7).
I love it when we can read a book that really brings the Bible to life for us. This is just that type of book. The author - Peggy Consolver is a true student of history and archaeology, as well as, a talented author. Check out this fascinating article of her experiences. She has done plenty of research into this culture and time period, and it really shines in her story. She brings the people, places and times of the Bible to life on each page. It's one of the best written books I've read in quite awhile.
The story follows a young Gibeonite shepherd named Keshub as he lives and learns about the true God - the "Star Namer" and meets Joshua of the Bible.
Keshub is such a real character that we all found ways to identify with him. His questions, his trials, and his triumphs all made us cheer! This story is woven with character lessons that will stick with you and your children.
The 24 chapter book includes a list of "Characters and Relationships" in the beginning that really helps to get them straight. We went back once in awhile for help. The story alternates between the Gibeonites and the Hebrew camp, so it is very helpful.
The book includes some discussion questions in the back that are perfect for small group discussion. They make great conversation starters at the dinner table too :-)
The author has also written - Digging Deeper into HIStory ' which is a 13 unit study guide of related information to delve into the story even more.
From downloadable maps to videos of how to use a sling (just like Keshub) you will find plenty to ignite your imagination as you read!
The Bentz Test Laboratory has been transported to the ancient world with Iliad & Odyssey Complete Set from Memoria Press. This amazing resource contains everything you need to unlock the secrets of some of the greatest literature in the history of the world!
This set contains:
The Iliad by Homer
Text (translation by Samuel Butler)
5 instructional DVDs
The Odyssey by Homer
Text (translation by Samuel Butler)
6 instructional DVDs by Sean Brooks
This set is recommended for grades 7-12, and can be used for a full year course. You can see a sample here. My tester was a 8th grader. She was delighted to get a chance to We were blessed to get the entire set, we chose to start with the Iliad since it happens first.
Homer can be a bit daunting to teach...but, Memoria Press, who is a favorite provider for our classical studies, has made it painless. This set is wonderful!
The Text is broken down into 24 readable "books" (or chapters). Each book can be completed in approximately an hour and half (depending on your child). It has been translated into easily understood text and they recommend that Homer is "best when read aloud". The Text begins with a handy chart of the "Friends and Foes of Homer's Iliad". My tester loved having this at the very beginning of the book to get the characters straight right away..
The Student Guide contains a 2 page written lesson for each book of the Text. Several activities are included to help make sure your student is understanding their reading.
Identify Places & Characters - key people and places in the book
Comprehension Questions - key questions from their reading
The Appendix contains tons of useful information. Genealogies, explanations of names, descriptions of weaponry and armor, ship terminology and character references. This appendix really helps unravel all the mysteries in Homer's Illiad.
The Teacher Guide is an absolute treasure! It contains answers for all of the pages in the Student Guide as well as:
Background and Drill - the "insider" info about the Iliad to prep you for teaching it.
Discussion Help - notes for discussion.
Questions to Mark for Test - the questions your student will be tested on.
Teacher Notes - helpful tips for preparing your student
Essays & Assignments - mapping, writing, memorization, performances, and more to round out the study
In addition, 2 tests and a Final test are included in the Teacher Guide. The tests are a combination of fill-in-the-blank, multiple choice, short answer and quotation. These are excellent resources for your high school student to assess grades for their transcript.
The Instructional DVD's were our FAVORITE part of the program! Each Book is explained by Sean Brooks, teacher of classical studies and Latin at Highlands Latin School in Louisville, Kentucky. The videos are engaging and well done, with excellent picture and sound quality.
Mr. Brooks is reviewing and commenting on each book's key points. Behind him is classical art, which makes it more visually interesting as well. The student should read first, then watch the DVD.
The Odyssey set contains the same well-done resources to follow the exciting adventure story of Odysseus as he returns from the war. We can't wait to unlock it next.
This set can be used independently, or worked on together. Best of all, you can teach Homer - even if you've never read it before :-)
This set is a wonderful way to introduce some of the greatest books ever written, and Memoria Press has made it easy to teach too!
Other Reviewers have been testing several products you will want to check out as well: