Monday, September 09, 2013

PeopleKeys: StudentKeys Student Binder {Schoolhouse Review}

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PeopleKeys, a company that has spent 25 years studying human behavior, strengths, and personal preferences, sent Schoolhouse Review Crew Members several different products that are designed help students discover their natural strengths and unique learning styles. We received the StudentKeys Student Binder Package designed for students ages 13 - Adult.
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My oldest child recently turned 14 which officially makes me a homeschool mom of a freshman in high school. All I have to say to that is "Boy, did it get here fast!"

When I saw these products up for review, I thought, "Wow, what a great opportunity for my son to really get to know himself better as he begins his high school journey." I have always enjoyed taking personal assessment tests, so I figured my son might enjoy taking them, too. If anything, I thought these short, self-scoring assessments would make a nice diversion from all of my son's regular subjects.

So, have you ever wondered what makes your child "tick?" Think it might be beneficial for your child to better understand how he learns, thinks, and relates to the world around him? If so, stay tuned as I expound upon the individual workbooks that comprise this personal development program.

The StudentKeys Binder Includes Six Workbooks:
The workbooks are meant to be completed in a particular order, and the first one is the personality workbook. Before jumping into the workbooks though, your child should read the Introduction, Objectives, and Instructions. These pages will be help your child understand the purpose and importance of these workbooks and how they will benefit him personally.
Personality Style Workbook
It's a 17-page workbook that includes the definition of personality styles, the importance of discovering personality styles, the Personality Style Questionnaire, overviews and detailed overviews of each personality style, how each style approaches tasks, and more.
This workbook uses the D.I.S.C. system of personality style analysis in order to help your student better understand himself and others. Research shows that behavior can be grouped into 4 main categories which have become known as DISC. D measures how a person solves problems and responds to challenges. I measures how a person attempts to influence or persuade others. S measures the pace at which a person responds to change. C measures how a person responds to the rules and regulations set by others.
I didn't need to urge my son in any way to begin his StudentKeys workbook. He was quite excited to find out his unique personality style. After taking the 15-question quiz, he was able to mark his answers on the DISC graph. Results: he's a CS. Most people do have a combination of 2 or more styles. At a glance my son is C - compliant, cautious, and correct, and S - steady, supportive, and stable.
There's so much more to this assessment than your child only knowing his personality style. The workbook details how each personality style learns new material, approaches instruction, and accomplishes tasks. It also shows how your child can enhance communication with others and gives him an opportunity to complete a Building-Effective-Relationships chart.
This is the first time I've ever seen this type of personality assessment. I am more familiar with the one based on the philosophy of Hippocrates (Choleric, Melancholy, Sanguine, Phlegmatic) and the one developed by Dr. Gary Smalley and Dr. John Trent which uses animals (lion, beaver, otter, golden retriever) to represent personality types. Based on what I am in those types of assessments, I am going to say I'd most likely be a DC according to the DISC assessment. Now, aren't you curious how you or your student would score?
As you can probably already tell, I love personality tests, but let's move on to the rest of the workbooks!
The Perceptual Learning Style Workbook
This is a 19-page workbook in which your child will identify his perceptual learning style: auditory, visual, or kinesthetic. Once your child uncovers his learning style, he will discover how he learns best, what he's sensitive to, what his strengths are, and what might keep him from learning. For each style, tips are included to help students learn best while listening to lectures, while studying, and while taking tests.
Other resources to help make the most of your child's learning style include a list of tools for each style, careers in which particular learning styles are used, and the opportunity to answer questions about his ideal learning environment.
My son scored highest as a visual learner, but auditory wasn't too far behind. I'm pretty sure I'm mostly auditory but highly visual as well. ;)
The Cognitive Thinking Style Workbook
In this 16-page workbook, your child will find out how he thinks. Is he a literal, intuitive, theoretical, or experiential thinker? This quiz is short - only 8 questions. My son scored really high as a literal and theoretical thinker. Each thinking style is explained in detail and gives insight into where your child's thinking style excels, where his thinking is limited, how he works in a group, how he works alone, and how his learning may be improved.
The Values Style Workbook
In this 17-page workbook, your child will learn what motivates himself to make decisions and how his values effect his personal and professional choices. Values are categorized into 4 different styles: loyalty, equality, personal freedom, and justice. Each style is detailed with an overview, general characteristics, and potential limitations. Also, there are questions for your child to answer to help him better understand his specific values style. Several pages are dedicated to understanding others' styles as well.
The Career Choice Workbook
After taking the assessments in the above 4 workbooks, your child is ready to apply the information in the Career Choice Workbook. This 24-page workbook matches suggested careers with your child's personality style. Your child will pinpoint personal strengths, recognize current and projected workforce trends, and market his strengths to employers of in-demand businesses and professions.
This workbook includes 10 future workforce trends, top 10 hottest careers, top 10 lists, and a list of 30 fastest-growing occupations between 2004 and 2014. It also tells your child six personal factors he should remember when deciding upon a career and why it's important to decide now.
Your child will take another short personality test tailored to his ideal occupational environment. Again, my son scored a CS. Overviews of occupational styles show how his personality would play out in a work environment. There are about 40 general occupations listed for each personality style (DISC). Musician is one of the occupations listed under the C style which already fits my son very well considering he recently put his first ambient album on iTunes, Amazon, and cdbaby. :) 
The Goal Setting Workbook
In this 17-page workbook, your child can begin planning his future. This workbook stresses the importance of making goals and writing them down. It lists lots of goal-setting tips and identifies 7 characteristics of winners.
Your child will have to list and explain 2 goals he has set and achieved, write an epitaph, determine which aspects in life are most important, write his primary and secondary career goals, write educational goals for his career goals, list leisure goals, and list personal goals.
Finally, the workbook instructs your child on managing obstacles, prioritizing and making a timeline, and creating a contract with himself.
My son really seemed to enjoy completing these workbooks, especially the first four. The Goal Setting Workbook was the only one I had to prompt him to finish. I think the future still seems pretty far off to him, plus this workbook requires more reflecting, thinking, and writing.
The first 5 workbooks could easily be completed in a week's time if your child did one workbook per day. This is basically what my son did, but I didn't set a strict schedule or anything. I let him move through the books at his own pace. The great thing was that he wanted to complete the workbooks!The Goal Setting Workbook might take a little more time to finish than the other workbooks, though.
This was definitely the first time I witnessed one of my kids being a little envious of another child getting a review product. My middle son begged to be able to take the personality assessment, too, so I let him take it and mark his answers on a separate sheet of paper. I wasn't surprised in the least that my boys are very different. :)
The benefits to your child understanding his personality, learning, thinking, and values styles are numerous. This valuable knowledge can enhance your child's everyday communication and learning situations. It can help him develop effective study habits and test-taking skills, and it can encourage him to set attainable goals and choose appropriate careers. Most importantly, your child may be better prepared to make significant life decisions.
My son wasn't the only one who benefitted from learning about himself. I, too, was able to learn a great deal about how my son operates. I plan to go back over his assessments in order to better acquaint myself with how he learns and communicates best. So, I think the StudentKeys Binder is a great tool for parents as well!
You can help your child identify and understand his natural strengths by purchasing the complete Student Binder for $49.00. The workbooks can be purchased individually, but I would recommend the entire binder for maximum benefit. Remember, this program is best suited for students in high school through college.
Be sure to check out other Crew reviews as there were a variety of products reviewed.

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Anonymous said...

We are using these books with our writers at I must say, they are so helpful and interesting!

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