Thursday, April 1, 2010

Critical Thinking Co. ~ Balance Benders

Homepage - The Critical Thinking Company
I have a number of The Critical Thinking Company's workbooks, so I was pleased that the TOS Crew was given the chance to review a couple of series. While other Crew members received a book from the Language Smarts series, I received the "Beginning" book in The Balance Benders series.
Balance Benders

Balance Benders are logic and algebraic reasoning puzzles, utilizing the concept of a "balance", and a variety of geometric shapes. The purpose in each puzzle is to correctly identify the 3 true mathematical statements for each "equation" in the balance.

The "Beginning" book is rated for grades 2-6. My 4th grader fit right in. The puzzles in the beginning of the book are fairly simple, but they become more complex as you go through the book, so be aware that the younger students may find it quickly becomes rathercomplex for them.

However, there is help included in the book. Towards the back, there are 10 "Balance Tips" that explain the algebraic concepts used in the book. If your child is stumped on a particular problem, they can go over the "Tips" and then see if the problem makes more sense, and is "Solvable" for them.

I used this book for my 4th grader, and he enjoyed working through the puzzles. I think that this will help to give him a bit of a foundation for when HE starts in Algebra. His big sister joined in, and was challenged with some of the more complex problems. It reinforced some of the work that she was currently engaged in, and the "Visual" aspect was a great addition.

The "Nitty Gritty" Balance Benders, Beginning Level (Grades 2-6), $9.99
The other books in the series are Level 1 (grades 4-12), Level 2 (Grades 6-12+), and Level 3 (Grades 8-12+). Each book is $9.99, with reproducible pages for your family's use. This makes these books an especially good value for those with multiple children. :)

Be sure to check out other Crew-mates' reviews, and see what they had to say about this latest series from the Critical Thinking Co. as well as the Language smarts Series.

As always, I hope that this review helps you to find the products that will most benefit YOUR homeschool, as you determine where to spend your homeschool budget.


Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this/these item(s)/service for free as part of the TOS Crew Review Program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commision's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."

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