Christian Novel Studies is committed to providing literature-based materials with a Christian perspective at affordable prices. The mini-guide's simple format is inexpensive for CNS to produce and easy for you to use: Put it in a three-ring binder of your choice.
The mini-guide format was developed to provide affordable, interactive guides for homeschooling families. Mini-guides are used by teachers (notes to the teacher and an Answer Key is provided) and students. If a parent/teacher wants to use a mini-guide with more than one student, reproducibles are available; they contain all of the fill-in-the-blank activities.
Workbooks -- that provide space for students to write answers -- have been developed for some mini-guides (see the list and links below). If you are interested in purchasing the workbook format for a specific title (but it hasn't been created yet), e-mail Chris Roe (firstname.lastname@example.org) and it will be put higher on the priority list.
New: All mini-guides, reproducible sheets, and workbooks are available as digital downloads at the TeachersPayTeachers website; a preview of each guide is also available. Check out the mini-guides on the TeachersPayTeachers website by grade level:
Making the guides available as digital downloads from TeachersPayTeachers is one purchasing option. Paper copies of mini-guides and reproducibles are still available from CNS; see the pricing schedule below. Also, the guides, reproducibles, and workbooks are able to be transmitted as e-mail attachments.
Workbooks for the following mini-guides are now available:
MINI-GUIDES for JUNIORS:
Amos Fortune Free Man
Ben and Me
Bound for Oregon
Day of the Blizzard
Forty Acres and Maybe a Mule
Lumber Camp Library
The Apple and the Arrow
The Birds' Christmas Carol (Christmas Classic Guide)
The Cabin Faced West
The Door in the Wall
The Family Under the Bridge (Christmas Classic Guide)
The Light at Tern Rock (Christmas Classic Guide)
The Matchlock Gun
Twenty and Ten (Christmas Classic Guide)
MINI-GUIDES for MIDDLERS:
A Single Shard
Adam of the Road
In His Steps
Journey to America
Mara Daughter of the Nile
Roll of Thunder Hear My Cry
The Bronze Bow
The Golden Goblet
The Hiding Place
The Winged Watchman
The Witch of Blackbird Pond
Where the Red Fern Grows
Words by Heart
MINI-GUIDES for SENIORS:
The Black Pearl
To Kill a Mockingbird
The content in the Interactive guide and the Workbook guide are the same.
Prices when purchasing directly from CNS:
|Mini-Guide (Interactive*)...........................................................$4.00 each
|Mini-Guide with Reproducibles...................................................$5.00 each
|*Guides in workbook format are $4.00 ea., but they are only available from Teachers Pay Teachers -- or as e-mail attachments.
In our family's decade of homeschooling we tried a variety of literature studies. Although our children love to read, they did not enjoy reading and studying a book for six to eight weeks; this dislike of long studies has been reported by other parents and teachers. Therefore, one feature of a mini-guide is that each guide is divided into ten sections -- one for each day of a two-week school schedule. Students read a section of a book and complete the activities for that section each day. If you want to use a mini-guide for a longer period of time, students may read one day and complete the work for that section of reading on another day.
Each mini-guide contains vocabulary words and exercises, discussion questions, a variety of activities, and an answer key. The purpose of a mini-guide is to learn more about a book than is possible from a quick read-through, but to refrain from overanalyzing it so that your child never wants to see the book again (I've had this happen several times in our home school!).
How Does the Content of a Mini-guide
Compare to the Content of a Study Guide?
The answer to this frequently asked question: There is a bit less content in a mini-guide. A mini-guide is in "letter" format: printed on both sides of 5, 6, or 7 letter-size (8 1/2" x 11") pages, so there are 10-14 pages of material. Study guides that are $5.99 in booklet format contain 48 booklet pages; these guides in letter format are $5.00 and are printed on 16-20 letter-size pages.
The content of a study guide that is less than $5.99 (i.e., The Light at Tern Rock -- a Christmas Classic guide that sells for $4.99) is comparable to the content in a mini-guide.
Mini-guides are divided into 10 sections. Study guides that are $5.99 in booklet format have more than 10 sections.
In a study guide, the following parts are always provided for a chapter/section: vocabulary, discussion questions, and at least one reading activity. When I create a mini-guide, however, if vocabulary words don't "jump out" at me as I'm reading the chapter(s), I don't include vocabulary in that section. Sometimes there are three reading activities for one section and none for another section.
Answer Keys are included in all mini-guides and all study guides!
Customers' comments about mini-guides -- like the following one from C. Smith -- have been favorable:
“I am so impressed with the Novel Mini-Guides. They are just packed full of riches and all for a price affordable to homeschoolers. Thank you for making them!”
Mini-guides were designed for use in home schools, but parents and teachers also use them in homeschool co-ops, in Christian schools, and in public schools. Two options are available for using mini-guides with multiple students:
1) Reproducibles -- 2-6 pages (depending on the content in the guide) that contain all of the fill-in-the blank activities -- are available for each mini-guide. When you purchase one set of reproducibles, you may make a copy for each of your students.
2) Use the guide in workbook format. If one has not yet been created, contact CNS and request a workbook version for a specific title. Please place requests at least two weeks before you need the guide in workbook format.
COPYRIGHT RESTRICTIONS for CNS MATERIALS
All CNS materials are protected by copyright.
The purchaser has permission to use the guide
with his/her children/students.
Reproducing the guide (or any portion of it) without written permission from CNS is a violation of the copyright; to do so is unethical.
Reproducing the guide for resale or as a gift is both unethical and illegal.
If you have any questions about specific circumstances, please contact CNS.