Friday, March 16, 2012

TOS Review: Classical Academic Press~ The Art of Argument

Are you as tired as I am of listening to your children argue (quarrel) all day long? Did you know that there is actually an art to arguing? I didn't, really; at least not from the logic viewpoint. Chesterton wrote,"My chief objection to a quarrel, is that it ends a good argument."

Recently we were given the opportunity to review The Art of Argument, An Introduction to the Informal Fallacies, from Classical Academic Press, which is designed specifically for junior high students.

From the website:
Junior high aged students will argue (and sometimes quarrel), but they won't argue well without good training. Young teens are also targeted by advertisers with a vengeance. From billboards to commercials to a walk down the mall, fallacious arguments are everywhere you look. The Art of Argument was designed to teach the argumentative adolescent how to reason with clarity, relevance and purpose at a time when he has a penchant for the "why" and "how". It is designed to equip and sharpen young minds as they live, play, and grow in this highly commercial culture. This course teaches students to recognize and identify twenty-eight informal fallacies, and the eye-catching text includes over sixty slick and clever, “phony advertisements” for items from blue jeans to pick-up trucks, which apply the fallacies to a myriad of real life situations.
Students will master the 28 fallacies, such as the straw man, begging the question, ad hominen, et al, by studying pertinent examples.

The text features a variety of:
  • Dialogues
  • Worksheets
  • Real-World Applications
  • Phony Advertisements
  • Dialectic Discussion Questions
  • Tests
  • Fun extras such as a humorous skit for students to perform, and the famous short story, Love is a Fallacy by Max Shulman

Initially, we were sent the wrong item (The Argument Builder), but Classical Academic Press graciously sent The Art of Argument....and even let us keep The Argument Builder! This is pretty cool, because now I'll have a couple year's worth of curriculum for Botanist Boy!

The website has this to say about The Argument Builder:
The Argument Builder is the ideal companion to The Art of Argument for students in eighth grade and up, as well as many curious adults! Where The Art of Argument enables students to find and identify fallacies in various kinds of writing and speech, The Argument Builder trains students to build their own sound and persuasive arguments. Written in a conversational, humorous, and easy to understand style, the text is a blend of logic and rhetoric—students first study the logical structure of good arguments and then study how to use several lines of argument (a.k.a., the common topics, first invented by Aristotle) including examples, analogy, comparison, testimony, and statistics, and layer them together into a strong whole. The text comes in a workbook format with many everyday examples, funny illustrations, and plenty of exercises to ensure students learn to become skilled argument makers!

I'll admit, because we had to wait extra time for The Art of Argument to arrive, then we were out of town on Spring break, to attend a wedding, we haven't had much time to even work on The Art of Argument. Botanist Boy will be in 7th grade next school, so we are really looking forward to using it in its entirety then!

The Art of Argument student text can be purchased for $21.95; the Teacher's Edition for $24.95; and the set of 5 DVDs, for $54.95. There is also a bundle, which includes all of those items, for $88.95.

The Argument Builder student text is also $21.95, and the Teacher's Edition is $24.95

Contact Information:


Classical Academic Press
3920 Market Street
Camp Hill, PA 17011

Toll Free: 866-730-0711
Phone: 717-730-0711
Fax: 717-730-0721

Headventure Land

Be sure to head over to the TOS Crew blog, to read what other Crew members have to say about The Art of Argument and The Argument Builder.

As a review blogger, I am provided a free copy of the book, curriculum or product to test and use in order to write an honest review. I receive no other compensation and the opinions I share are my own and not influenced by the company in question. Pin It Now!

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