Yes, indeed; you heard that right… exactly what I’ve been hoping for: I got an email late last night suggesting that Part 2 is officially in the works!
Apparently, the new volume “covers the rest of Lech Lecha and has very upgraded worksheets as well as chazara [review] tools.”
Naturally, I suggested that he arrange to come and show the thing as a vendor at the upcoming Torah Home Education Conference in May!
Bright Beginnings is the Chumash workbook we have been working our way slooooowly through since July of 2011. It’s cute, it’s fun, and I have found that its method of emphasizing roots and prefixes is very sound and appropriate for this level, while the layout is visually more appealing than almost anything I have seen in a limudei kodesh text.
Here’s a typical page from Bright Beginnings:
It’s not too busy – engaging, but not distracting. There’s enough interaction, but also enough focus on just reading and getting the job done. It’s true that we have gone through this book very slowly, but I believe the experience has given Naomi Rivka a very thorough grounding in what Chumash study is and should be.
Next year, of course, she’ll be learning Chumash in school – they call the subject Torah in Israel, apparently. And I’ll have very little control over what she does and learns. But until then… well, if we ever finish Part 1, I am very much looking forward to starting Part 2 (or even if we don’t finish – I’m not averse to jumping into the new book if it offers more of a challenge).
To see an old prepublication sample of what Book 1 (sort of) looks like (the cute artwork was added in the final stages), click here (previewers’ constructive criticism appears at the bottom of that page). You can also read about Michelle’s adventures with her daughter, Froggie, working through this book over at her blog, Lionden Landing. (if you have blogged about using this book with YOUR kids, I’d love to hear about it – leave a comment below)
On another note, I heard Rabbi Yakov Horowitz, one of the book’s authors, speak in Toronto last month – it was wonderful. He is one of the good guys out there: saying all the right things about chinuch (education) and the yeshiva world, and although not everybody is listening yet, he has a great site where you can read his essays, ideas and responses to parents.
Just thought I’d share this great news with everybody here…