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Review of Standard Deviants Accelerate

Standard Deviants Accelerate Review
If there was one product I raved about last year, it was Standard Deviants Accelerate. Well, a year may have gone by, but nothing has changed. Standard Deviants' Homeschool Courses are just as awesome as always! If you think you've seen everything that online homeschool classes have to offer, or if your kids are bored with the usual online offerings, you absolutely need to take a look at these classes. For starters, I give you your instructors:


Standard Deviants Accelerate Review

Intrigued yet? I was completely surprised to find out that Standard Deviants is twenty-plus years old! I would have guessed that they were brand new, but it turns out that they were producing videos long before they hit the Web. All I can say is that I am so glad that they brought their brand of instruction to the Internet. If you love your learning with a heavy helping of laughter, then this is the company for you. Even better, if you don't mind a bit of irreverence, you'll find yourself signing up for a yearlong subscription before you know it!

Standard Deviants offers 13 courses for grades 3-11+. From Arithmetic through four AP class test preps (Biology, Chemistry, US Government and Politics, and English and Composition), Standard Deviants likely has something for everyone in your family. While each course varies in length, the ones that I have sampled all follow a similar format. 

At the outset, you can see a great outline of the course on which you wish to embark. Here's Chemistry:


Each lesson has several component parts, which you can see across the top of the screen on the colored tabs. Some lessons have more or fewer parts. For example, sometimes there is a diagram to fill in. First is always the video lesson (the following two examples are from Biology):



The next tab is vocabulary from the video (back to Chemistry!):




Next comes a multiple choice quiz on the video just watched:


And finally a short answer section:



How We Used it and What We Thought

As I have already indicated, we love Standard Deviants. Because of the humorous way in which the material is delivered, my kids remember everything they learn. They are also able to deal with material that is technically probably "too hard" for them (I'm talking to you, Chemistry!). Not only don't they mind science (a subject that is neither their nor my favorite), but they beg to do it. They have their favorite "characters" (instructors), and they get so happy when they see them pop up in the various videos. Probably more than the twins (10), Nicholas (12) is in it for the science. We had started Chemistry last year, but then ended up completing Earth Science and Nutrition instead after doing Chemistry for only three month. Nicholas *begged* to get back to Chemistry this year, and was so happy when we did. He enjoys the humorous way that the material is presented, but some of the subtleties go over his head (not a surprise given his general literal approach to everything). The twins, on the other hand, are constantly on the lookout for the next big gag (which doesn't mean that they don't get the science - they do!). 

We didn't just do science, though. On thing I really appreciate about Standard Deviants is that they teach things that I just...don't. Take English Composition, for example. Nicholas and the twins are too young for a formal course like this (which Therese (14) did last year), but there are aspects of it that are great for them and that I can use when, for whatever reason, I can't work with them. One subset of the English Composition course is "American Literary Periods." It's the kind of thing that doesn't really fit in with any curriculum that I would use, but that I find it really beneficial for the kids to know. Really, though, if I had to pick one thing that I think Standard Deviants excels at, it's making science really, really fun for kids who don't naturally love science.

When my kids sit down to use Standard Deviants, they just gather around the computer and watch the videos. It's very laid back, just like the instructors. Sometimes we do the quiz and sometimes we don't. More often than not I'll just have them narrate the lesson to me orally. This is a completely no-fuss curriculum. I really can't recommend it highly enough.

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Standard Deviants Accelerate Review


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