Friday, January 22, 2016

"The Plans I Have For You" Devotional and Journal Review

We sometimes get an opportunity to review an item that is geared for a demographic that is younger than my homeschooler. My homeschooler is a teenager who is on the autism spectrum and has academic and other developmental delays, and we often use materials for younger grade levels for teaching and learning. We work at her developmental level, not at the grade level that is associated with her age."The Plans I Have For You" Devotional is a 90-day devotional with a verse, short commentary, and gorgeous, age appropriate illustrations on each page. It is hardback, 160 pages, about the size of a tablet (easily fits in a tote bag or large purse for traveling or time in waiting rooms). The suggested age range is 8-12 years old. The devotional retails for $14.99.

"The Plans I Have For You" Journal is meant to accompany the devotions and is paperback with pages that are blue and cream/gray (awesome on sensitive eyes!!!!) and retails for $12.99. The journal is the same size as the devotional, 208 pages long. daughter's review: "PRETTY COOL". She likes that the pages are not dated and that if we skip a day she doesn't feel behind or that she failed.

Author Amy Parker and illustrator Vanessa Brantley-Newton have done a fabulous job with this set of study materials!

The pages of both books are inviting and fun! My girl will not entertain an activity that is simply a bunch of words on a page. Too much text, no illustrations, are overwhelming to her.  In terms of using these resources with a teen who has unique learning needs and developmental delays, the devotions and journal prompts are short - a plus when you have a child who sees 'too much' text on a page and shuts down.

My girl has been asking me a lot about her purpose, about why she is here. "The Plans I Have For You" set is a perfect addition at home at this point in time. The devotional and journal walk us through God's plans and desires for us, God's love for us, who God is, it talks about our plans, the plans of others (Jonah, for example), and in our situation at this point in time, is a really solid resource for talking to my girl about her dreams and God's plans for her. She wants to be an actress of some sort. We'll see. She has gifts in the area of fine arts. God can use her there.

My daughter and I are enjoying the pair and she tends to sneak off with them and read and write without me. I find that some of the concepts are abstract and harder for her to understand and I prefer to do them with her so that I can facilitate the understanding of concepts for her. Her private thoughts are her own and I won't include a photo of her work in the journal for that reason.

I find that I need to look ahead, to preview, future lessons so that I can figure out how to present them in ways my child can understand. The other option is to allow her to work through them without me and hope she gains some understanding. I don't know how much she is understanding and absorbing and I trust that she is understanding and absorbing something.

Here is an example to show you what I mean:
"Who is this that OBSCURES my plans with words without knowledge?" - Job 38:12
"God spoke these words to Job and his friends.
In your own words, what do they mean?"
If you have a teen with special learning needs and developmental delays, I do find this resource for aimed at younger children a good one. Expect to make some accommodations to the material if your child is very concrete (but we parents are accustomed to doing that, anyway.)

We've used a lot of Zondervan products over the years (my favorite is when I see them at a homeschool convention) and they always seem to produce quality products. Please follow ZonderKids on Facebook and Twitter
"Disclosure (in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”): Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for the giveaway. Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation. I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post. Only one entrant per mailing address, per giveaway. If you have won a prize from our sponsor Propeller / FlyBy Promotions in the last 30 days, you are not eligible to win. Or if you have won the same prize on another blog, you are not eligible to win it again. Winner is subject to eligibility verification.”

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