Are you familiar with Standard Deviants Accelerate? We had already explored many of their DVD’s that our local library has and loved the quirky fun lessons. When the opportunity became available to be able to use Standard Deviants Accelerate Homeschool Courses for a review, we knew we wanted to take advantage of it. For this review, we were given an annual subscription.
About Standard Deviants Accelerate
As I mentioned earlier, Standard Deviants had already been producing videos and now they have taken those videos, added activities to them and made them available as the perfect online supplemental course. There are several courses available.
- Earth Science (grade 6+)
- Nutrition (grade 6+)
- Biology (grade 7+)
- Chemistry (grade 9+)
- Arithmetic (grade 3+)
- Fundamental Math (grade 4+)
- Algebra (grade 7+)
- English Comp (grades 9+)
- US History (grades 9+)
- AP Biology (grades 11+)
- AP Chemistry (grades 11+)
- AP US Govt. & Politics (grades 11+)
- AP US History (grades 11+)
- AP English Comp (grades 11+)
For each subject, you can view the available chapters (so you know what’s covered) and there’s also links to view how the course compares to State, National and Common Core standards.
For this review, I will be sharing my son’s experience with the Biology course.
Setting Up Your Account
After you decide on which course(s) you want, you need to decide on your membership. For the regular courses, you can choose between monthly ($24.95) or annual subscription ($99). This will give you access for one teacher, one student, for one subject. For the AP courses, you get a monthly subscription for $14.95, also for one teacher, one student, one subject. If you have a special need, you can always call them. I had several opportunities to email their customer service department and received very quick resolutions.
Once you place your order, you will receive information to access your account. There’s even webinars (group or one-on-one) that you can watch that will answer all of your questions. When you sign into your teacher’s account, you just need to click on the given subject and “assign” it. You will be given a invite code for the student to use to access the course.
The above screenshot was taken after my son had already started the course so that’s why there’s a grade listed.
From the teacher’s portal, you can follow your student’s progress and you will need to grade the questions when answers have to be written out. You can also edit the rubric. If there’s anything that needs your attention, there will be a little red flag to alert you of a message (you and your student can send messages back and forth), when an assignment needs to be graded, or to notify you when the student’s grade drops.
For the Student
All the student needs to do to get started in the course is to go to the website, click log-in, enter their email address (the student does need an email address) and the invite code that you were given when you assigned the course from the teacher’s portal.
The student now has access to their course(s).
(Yes, I got a little happy in assigning courses because we wanted to view as many as we could.) So, we are doing Biology so you click on that to start the lessons. For Biology, there are a variety of lessons:
- 141 vocab words
- 46 critical thinking questions
- 245 multiple choice questions
- 22 drag-n-drop graphic organizers
- 262 minutes of video with scrolling transcripts (this allows the student to copy and paste to a virtual notebook
This is what a lesson will look like:
As you can see, there is a written transcript of the video that the student watches. My son just highlighted pertinent information, copy and pasted to the notebook at the bottom. “Send to locker” will save the text so it can be read later.
Here is the student’s locker:
After the lesson is completed, the student takes a quiz.
The auto-grading feature is such a time-saver for me. The written questions are the only ones I need to worry about grading. When an answer is incorrect, the student is given feedback and is allowed to watch a video.
We will keep using this program. Why? I think it’s a great supplemental course. There’s just enough variety to keep it interesting for him. And it doesn’t add any more to my workload. But most importantly, because he wants to and having a lesson that my son is willing to work on without any complaints is more than enough reason for me!