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Reviews

What People Are Saying About Design-A-Study
Professional/Magazine Reviews

Natural Speller
Comprehensive Composition
Critical Conditioning
Movies As Literature
Maximum Math
Science Scope
Guides to History Plus
The Maya (Unit Study)
Teaching Tips & Techniques
Workshop/Workshop Tapes
Reviews focusing on Design-A-Study
Customer Reviews (Next Page)

Natural Speller
Comprehensive Composition
Critical Conditioning
Movies As Literature
Maximum Math
Science Scope
Guides to History Plus
Teaching Tips & Techniques
Workshop/Workshop Tapes


What People Are Saying About Design-A-Study

"When I tell others about your products, I think of the words "flexible structure with emphasis on true understanding." I truly think your materials are the single most valuable materials I have purchased since beginning homeschooling."
—S. Stapleton

"…I am so happy I want to shout it from the rooftops! …I am sure the Lord has directed me to this program to inspire me with quality material that I can afford on my limited budget. …I finally feel equipped to give my best now. You have blessed me immeasurably."
—P. Angeloni, AR

"I still think your guides are the next best thing to bread and butter and tell everyone I see with that ‘textbook glaze’ in their eye about your books. Thanks."
—D. Edson, SC

"Your Design-a-Study Books are wonderful! They have given me the courage to step out into the world of ‘designing your own curriculum.’ They are a wealth of information I could not do without."
—Homeschooler in PA
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"I absolutely love your materials! I have been a homeschooling mom for 14 years but feel that I only really began to "get it" once I discovered your books two years ago."
—L. Harris of Murphy, OR

"You also helped me get over the schooled (public) need to complete the workbook curriculum phobia. … Your advice is practical, short, to the point, and written from experience."
—M. Capro

"I LOVE the Natural Speller. We also use Critical Conditioning which has helped us tremendously with reading comprehension. Being an 'eclectic' homeschooler, I enjoy these books as they help break the mold of strict curriculums and allow the use of real books. They provide just enough guidance to help me teach without putting me in a box. Thanks!!!!"
—Meliea, NC.

"I still say that there are plenty of experts out there who are telling us the why and what of homeschooling, but as far as I can tell, it is just Kathryn Stout telling us how—and for this I thank you!"
—T. Inzerillo
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"Thank you for your thorough work! Finally, a resource I can use as a tool to do the job I want to do, instead of feeling like I am the tool to be used by the resource!"
—K. Fettz, VA

"I just wanted to let you know what a wonderful blessing your materials have been to me! …I feel like your guides give me a framework and confidence. …We are all looking forward to school now!"
—J. McDonald

"I must tell you that thanks to your books and seminar [tapes], I am finally getting MY education. I am actually beginning to learn to think, too!!"
—N. Spacek, CT

"First let me say how grateful I am that you have made homeschooling better for me and my kids! Because of your work, I feel capable as a teacher."
—D Chavalier

"I use my summers for planning materials needed throughout the year and your publications really help me to achieve my goals without a lot of headaches."
—N Sadewater, IL
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"I have your book Movies as Literature which I use with my 8th grade daughter. We adore the lessons and have recommended it to several friends. I use all of your books and could have written pages on how they have improved the quality of our homeschooling experience. I was happy to have the opportunity to tell you of how just one of your books has helped us set up a truly individualized course where my sons actually apply what they have learned and have fun doing it. Since learning is a life long process, I want them to experience the joy that comes with discovery and your ideas certainly help us achieve that goal. Keep up the fantastic work!"
—L. Webb

"[Kathryn Stout’s] way is designed to develop your kids as independent, aggressive learners without missing important concepts and skills they should know. …her ideas will give you a better understanding of the process of good teaching."
—Ted Wade, Home School Manual

"These materials are a gold mine for those of us who want to break away from a structured curriculum and use a more varied approach. …These materials can guide you to wonderful, thorough unit studies..."
—Christine Field, A Field Guide to Home Schooling
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"Your Design-a-Study Books are wonderful! They have given me the courage to step out into the world of ‘designing your own curriculum.’ They are a wealth of information I could not do without."
—PA

"Thank you so much for offering excellent materials and a very informative website! I refer to it often in my curriculum studies!"
—M. Tweet

“One of the reasons that I enjoy your books so much is that I lean towards piecing together our curriculum rather than buying it put together for me.”
—A. Edmonds

"I enjoy your books and use them for reference on a regular basis."
—A. Edmonds
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"So far I’ve loved homeschooling my “gifted”—I hate labels but it’s probably appropriate—almost eight year old who was an early reader and is a naturally independent learner, as we’ve used an eclectic, relaxed, literature based approach and it’s worked wonderfully. But we recently moved to a state that requires I keep all kinds of documentation and evaluation, so I’m eager to learn how to build upon what is already working well in a way that demonstrates we are complying with the law—without trying to fix something that’s not broken OR wearing myself out second guessing whether I’m doing “enough”! Your guides are a wealth of information that I believe will work very well in helping me pull together some learning objectives for the upcoming year, easily keep records of what he learns, and teach me how to better support him as an independent learner while insuring that he gets a well-rounded education. I’m so very thankful to have been lead to your resources.
Also, thanks for taking the time and energy to share your own expertise through publishing both your guides and your wonderful newsletter. I’m a mom with a chronic health issue so it’s a special encouragement to me to read practical tips from someone who understands how this sort of thing impacts our learning environment."
—Noltie, MO
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Professional/Magazine Reviews

Natural Speller

Homeschool Enrichment Magazine: Natural Speller reviewed by Lori Deese

Eclectic Homeschool Online: Natural Speller reviewed by Anita Barth

"It is important to continue working on spelling; that is a lifelong task…If you use a book at all, use an all-in-one book…the Natural Speller by Kathryn Stout."
—Ruth Beechick, Dr. Beechick’s Homeschool Answer Book

"Everything necessary for spelling instruction for grades 1-8 is included in this book. Basic word lists are given for each grade with words containing similar patterns grouped together. Special word lists (e.g., calendar words, contractions, measurements, homophones, latin roots)) are also provided. Kathryn Stout strongly advocates keeping separate those words with similar sounds which are formed by different letter combinations (e.g., though, bow, sole). Lessons can be developed from the word lists or with words of your own choosing. Instructions are provided for teaching spelling and for studying words. (This is not a student text but a parent/teacher resource book.) Spelling rules are provided with charts that include suffixes and prefixes along with phonic and writing rules."
—Cathy Duffy, Christian Home Educators’ Curriculum Manual

Comprehensive Composition

Eclectic Homeschool Online: Comprehensive Composition reviewed by Anita Barth

"This has to be one of the most concise, yet comprehensive books for teaching the writing process available to home educators."
—Cathy Duffy, Christian Home Educators’ Curriculum Manual, review of Comprehensive Composition
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Critical Conditioning

Homeschool Enrichment Magazine: Critical Conditioning reviewed by Paula Anderson

Eclectic Homeschool Online: Critical Conditioning reviewed by Anita Barth

Movies As Literature

The Old Schoolhouse Magazine reviewed by L. Hiatt

Maximum Math

Homeschool Enrichment Magazine: Maximum Math reviewed by Lori Deese

Eclectic Homeschool Online: Maximum Math reviewed by Anita Barth
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Science Scope

Homeschool Enrichment Magazine: Science Scope reviewed by Karen Matlock

Eclectic Homeschool Online: Science Scope reviewed by Anita Barth

"Even if we are willing to abandon the textbook approach, many of us feel insecure determining at what level our child should be working on a science topic… Kathryn Stout’s Science Scope helps us identify appropriate activities for different age groups within each science area. This is an extremely useful resource… Science Scope makes it easier to select appropriate resources for whatever topic is chosen for study."
—Cathy Duffy, Christian Home Educators’ Curriculum Manual, review of Science Scope

Guides to History Plus

Homeschool Enrichment Magazine: Guides to History Plus reviewed by Leslie J. Wyatt

Eclectic Homeschool Online: Guides to History Plus reviewed by Anita Barth
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The Maya (Unit Study)

Eclectic Homeschool Online: The Maya reviewed by Anita Barth

Teaching Tips & Techniques

Eclectic Homeschool Online: Teaching Tips & Techniques reviewed by Anita Barth

Workshop/Workshop Tapes

Eclectic Homeschool Online: Homeschooling the Challenging Child reviewed by Anita Barth

"The Kathryn Stout [all-day seminar] is one of the very few workshops that I’ve ever attended that I could take home the ideas and immediately put them to use. Kathryn will teach you how to teach—anything. I highly recommend this workshop and the Kathryn Stout Design-A-Study curriculum, for both new and experienced homeschool parents!"
—Vicki Falco, Director, Champion Preparatory Academy

"Looking for a speaker who can both encourage and equip? Looking for guidance from someone with honest, practical experience? Kathryn Stout is a dynamic speaker with a solid educational background: before homeschooling her own children through high school she spent eight years working in the public education arena. Additionally, she has counseled hundreds of families during the last seven years as director of Academy Adonai in Delaware. This hard-earned knowledge quickly becomes evident while listening to her workshops. No pie-in-the-sky, wishful thinking stuff here: Kathryn offers practical, intelligent advice that really works. Listening to her gives one both the confidence to teach and the information needed to teach well. I highly recommend Kathryn!" —Maggie Hogan, speaker, homeschool support group leader, DHEA vice-president, and author of Gifted Children at Home, Hands On Geography, et. al.
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"Everyone seems to have an answer to the question, How do I deal with my challenging child? I have listened to hundreds of lectures, sermons, and tapes on the subject. To my mind, few of them were worth the time it took to listen. This tape, Homeschooling the Challenging Child, is different.

"One reason it is different is that the lecturer, Kathryn Stout, has a lot of experience in this area. Not only did she have a challenging child of her own, she has also worked with challenging children in both public and home school settings. Her experience in this area comes through time and time again throughout the tape.

"While listening to this workshop, I was struck by three things. First, Mrs. Stout tries to keep the parent on track. She deals with physical problems that are often misunderstood to be behavioral problems. She also spends a great deal of time on proper parental expectations. In my experience, what many parents perceive to be a problem with their child is often a problem with their unrealistic expectations!

"The second thing that struck me was the practical nature of Kathryn's words. She gives several concrete methods for dealing with different kinds of challenging children. I have never heard such a practical talk on this subject!

"Finally, Mrs. Stout stresses one of the most important things that can be stressed when dealing with a challenging child. She stresses that we should NOT try to CHANGE the child's personality! In my opinion, this happens far too often. As parents, we tend to want to raise little versions of ourselves. This is not only destructive to the student, it challenges the very Providence of God. God has CREATED your child with his or her own unique personality. Do not CHANGE what He has done. Simply SHAPE it into a personality that will work within the bounds of society.

"This workshop gives you an enormous amount of practical advice on how to do just that!"
—Dr. Jay Wile of Apologia Educational Ministries is a noted speaker and the author of Reasonable Faith: The Scientific Case for Christianity, Exploring Creation with Physical Science, et. al.
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Reviews focusing on Design-A-Study

Family Times Newspaper Mar/Apr 2003
Design-A-Study Series reviewed by Jane R. Boswell

The Old Schoolhouse Magazine
Design-A-Study Series reviewed by by Debra Cogburn
Lead Product Reviewer
TOS Magazine
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Design-A-Study offers a money-back guarantee for books returned in resalable condition within thirty (30) days. Audiocassettes are not returnable, but may be exchanged if defective. Please note: when shipping is free due to a special offer, postage is deducted from the price of returned items before the refund is issued.