What is Moving Beyond the Page (MBTP)?
It is a company that describes its product as a “comprehensive
research-based curriculum designed to challenge and stimulate gifted
and creative homeschoolers.” Some might call it “curriculum
in a box.” My children called it “fun.” They
opened the box and found reading books, parent guides, and science
materials. This is a review of Moving Beyond the Page’s curriculum
for ages 7-9, Concept 3 “Cycles.”
The concepts are available to purchase as individually or all
together (to cover a year). Concept 3: Cycles comes with the books Poppy,
Charlotte’s Web, The Family under the Bridge, If You Made
a Million, Who Eats What?, Life Cycles, Perfect Punctuation, and
A Drop Around the World as well as parent guides for each
literature book, a parent guide for the whole concept, a World
Alive Butterfly Kit, and an owl pellet dissection kit. The concept
is broken down into three units: Unit 1 covers lifecycles, Unit
2 covers the water cycle, and Unit 3 covers economic cycles. To
make this curriculum comprehensive, you would need to add a math
Here is the full-year curriculum for ages 7-9:
MBTP strives to meet and exceed state and national standards,
challenging the student to think critically and creatively, “solve
complex problems, become introspective, research topics, develop
products, and participate in real-life learning experiences.” The
concept units connect literature to science or social studies.
Each concept is designed to take 40 days of instruction.
begin this study, the student must be able to ready and comprehend
simple chapter books on a 3rd or 4th grade grading level. The
student must also be able to write multiple sentences on a topic.
My daughter, age 7, did fine this year with MBTP but would not
have done well with it last year, as her reading level was on
the 2nd grade reading level. The parent guide suggests taking
2½ to 3 hours for the lesson each day: 30 minutes of independent
reading, 20-30 minutes of reading aloud to the child, 1 hour on
your separate curriculum math, 15-20 minutes reviewing spelling
and vocabulary words, and 30 minutes of physical activity. You
can have two or more children using MBTP.
Each lesson in the parent guide has questions to explore, facts
and definitions, skills to learn or practice, materials needed,
introduction, activities, conclusion, and real-life application.
Not all questions asked of the student have answers provided.
There is a spelling list in the appendix of each literature unit.
Students keep a spelling journal as well as a daily journal to
record ideas and writing related to the literature.
The owl pellet kit was a very exciting addition to the reading
of Poppy. I appreciated exposure to new books. I had not read
Avi before and found the writing to be excellent. My daughter
loved the Perfect Punctuation book. It had great flaps that you
could open and close to explore punctuation. I liked the variety
of activities and the list of skills exercised during the unit.
While I view MBTP as a literature/science/social studies unit,
I could easily have incorporated religion. The website states: “Even
though we are not a religious curriculum, it would be easy to
supplement each unit with religious stories and lessons.” I
like that there are a few samples of the curriculum guides at
the end of the curriculum package. The guides certainly save me
time in planning my homeschooling day.
If I could change one thing about Moving Beyond the Page, it
would be their website. There is a lot of information there, but
I would change the organization of the information. Because I
know my child, I have a good idea of what works for her. I knew
that I wanted to base her learning off of books, but without seeing
the curriculum guides I didn’t have a clear understanding
of what MBTP offered. When I read the curriculum guides, I could
see how the activities were very much meant for students like
my child. I appreciate that MBTP has now added a few samples of
the guide on the website. I appreciated the spelling lists that
MBTP provided, but for this age I felt that my child needed a
more structured approach to spelling. So I provided that using
a different curriculum.
We enjoyed the challenging, in-depth reading extension exercises
that Moving Beyond the Page provided us. We appreciated the way
that they connected the study of cycles to literature, science,
and social science. We look forward to continuing our study.