Bechtel Books: A Boon to Christian Homeschoolers
By E. Ostertag
Bechtel Books has been providing Christian publications to homeschool families for 25 years. Among their most popular offerings are the Speedy Spanish courses and Christian Ethics for Youth. Though Bechtel Books offers a wide range of Christian educational materials, these two courses were written and are produced by the Bechtels themselves, to meet the needs of the Christian homeschool community.
The Speedy Spanish series was developed by the Bechtel family in response to requests from homeschooling families for a language course that was suitable for a wide range of ages. Speedy Spanish 1 is written at approximately a third-grade reading level, but that makes it appropriate for any beginning Spanish student. The sentences are simple and concepts are clear, so the new vocabulary and grammar structure are easy to pick up.
Speedy Spanish1 contains 30 lessons and 6 review exercises, so if one lesson or review is completed per week, the course will last one academic year. Available as a supplement to the book, is a set of eight audio CDs containing vocabulary exercises, songs and quizzes. For added value, order the Speedy Spanish 1 High School Package Deal, which includes the core book and CDs, as well as a teacher’s guide, a set of vocabulary cards, tests with answer keys, extra practice worksheets, and the Spanish ABC book and CD, which focus on grammar and pronunciation.
What really sets Speedy Spanish apart is the Christian focus. Included in the lessons are Bible verses, Christian songs and other phrases with a specific Christian or Biblical vocabulary. Students learn words and phrases that will allow them to discuss their faith comfortably in Spanish.
Also available from Bechtel Books is Christian Ethics for Youth, a guide to Christian living, based on the Book of Proverbs. Each themed chapter begins with a selected proverb and then expands on the topic with real-life examples of right and wrong behavior. Chapters include “The Beginning of Wisdom,” “Paths of the Righteous,” and “Humility versus Pride.” The last section of the book divides the Proverbs into themes for ease of understanding and reference. This is an invaluable guide to old-fashioned morality and manners that parents can read with their teens or feel comfortable letting them read on their own. Also available is a supplemental book of worksheets, to reinforce the lessons found in the book.
To see the Bechtels’ full range of offerings, including Speedy Spanish 2 and supplemental material for Speedy Spanish 1, visit their website, www.speedy-spanish.com. EO