Thursday, September 16, 2010

New Monic's Vocabulary Cartoons

"Thirty days hath September, April, June, and November."

"In 1492, Columbus sailed the ocean blue."

"Please Excuse My Dear Aunt Sally."

"Roy G. Biv"

What do each of those statements have in common?  They're all mnemonic devices, a memory or learning aid.  Probably ones that you've memorized, and taught to your kids, as well.

New Monic Books has taken mnemonic devices to a new level.  In their Vocabulary Cartoons:  SAT Word Power books, they've combined both visual and auditory mnemonic devices to help 7th - 12th grade students learn hundreds of SAT vocabulary words.

Each vocabulary word is defined at the top  of the page, with the memory link for that word.   Beneath that there is a humorous cartoon, with a rhyming phrase to help the student remember the definition.  The vocabulary word is then used in three sentences, and there are review activities included after every ten words.

Samples of the vocabulary cartoons and mnemonic phrases can be seen at the Vocabulary Cartoons website.  You can even download 12-page samplers for both the elementary and high school grade level.

Vocabulary Cartoons:  SAT Word Power is a softcover book, containing 290 words, and is available for $12.95.  There is also a second  edition which contains additional SAT vocabulary words.  These books are re-usable, and non-consumable if the student uses paper to complete the review activitites rather than writing directly in the book.


This book is a simple, but effective tool for helping your junior and senior high students prepare for the SAT.  It's fun, and it works.  My 10th grade daughter ran off with the book as soon as it arrived.  She saw me open the package, picked the book up, flipped through it, and then wandered off to read it.   She has told me several times since then how it's such a "cool" book.  She has described some of her favorite cartoons to me in the weeks since then, and I had to retrieve the book from the foot of her bed in order to write this review.

Additionally, there are words in this book that I would not have thought to teach to my daughter to prepare her for the SAT.  For instance, I didn't even realize that ALSO-RAN was a word ... let alone that it might be included in the SAT test.  It's also unlikely that the words curvilinear and euphonious would have come up in our discussions of words and their meanings.

For some students with a natural understanding of words, this book would not be necessary.  But for those who struggle with vocabulary, I feel that buying this book would be $12.95 well-spent.

This item was provided free for my review as a member of the TOS Homeschool Crew.  I received no other compensation, and this review is my family's honest opinion. Visit the TOS Homeschool Crew blog to read more reviews on this product by other Homeschool Crew members.

Trusting In Him,


  1. I use a relatively simple vocabulary, myself. Do you suppose it would be weird for me to consider it to expand my own vocabulary? I will have to think about it. Of course, then I'd already have it when the kids are ready, right? I can totally see my 7-year old disappearing with it. :)

  2. Thanks for the recommendations. I get good helpful hints, and this one is very timely. My 16yo sits her PSAT in 3 weeks and vocab is her weakest area.

  3. Kimberly, Not all the words in the vocabulary book are as big as the few that I mentioned. I'm sure it could expand your vocabulary, but I did want to say that I looked through and specifically chose a few large and more rare words to mention.


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