We had an interesting late night phone call earlier this week. From Don at Winter Promise. The owner. This isn't the first conversation I've had with him but it's definitely the most illuminating. We talked for quite a while so I'm only going to give you the highlights.
I started with the Draw Your World maps. It actually stunned him that there were errors with the maps.
"I don't believe we've had anyone ever complain about that." Really, Don, really? Do you want to bet the farm on that statement?
From the Winter Promise message boards...
That is just one of many complaints I've found on the WP boards. That one was from 2007. Nice!
I actually got out our Draw Your World Book and went down each and every error that I found during the five weeks that I'd been using WP. To say that he was stunned was an understatement. And I'd only been using the Europe map. Who knows what's going on with the rest of the book?
He also said it could be a file glitch and that's why they're printing out poorly. Maybe a file error caused the seas to look like lakes and 1/4 Europe was cut off the map. Uh no!! Because your giant "Travel With Me" map looks exactly the same only it's bigger and in color. It was drawn that way buddy.
He did say that he is going to have his people look into that because he wouldn't want to keep sending out an incorrect product. I promise you that I DID NOT laugh out loud. I held it in. Because now we all know that they've been getting complaints about the maps since 2007.
I decided to move on to the $30 Children of Many Lands book written and published by WP. I told him that I couldn't believe the amount of grammatical errors that I find on every, single page.
Don's response..."Oh yeah, we know about that. We hired an editor and they didn't do the job properly and we totally got burned on that one." That was it. They knew there was a problem with it and sold it to people anyway. At a ridiculous price. Thanks for passing along the "burn" to your customers.
Now I get that they're a small company and they probably couldn't afford to reprint it until they sold what they had. But a heads-up and a price decrease were in order. My daughter is currently using it for editing practice.
I also commented on the lack of cohesiveness to the reading and how I wasn't exactly sure what she was supposed to be learning. We study Switzerland and instead of reading Heidi then, it's scheduled for our Africa study. I'm unhappy that the notebooking pages ask for information and mention things that we haven't studied.
Apparently we spent hundreds of dollars on books that weren't going to to hit the main points and we're supposed to spend hours researching other resources that will tell us the complete story. They don't really offer suggestions for other books or movie ideas. And I am not the only person who is unhappy about all the extra work. Just check the forums.
And apparently I just don't understand scheduling books. (Please note my eye roll now.)
I do understand, Don, that things can't always line up. But when they can, they should. I could list about 10 changes to your schedule to fix that issue but I already paid you to handle that. BTW, people complained about that on their forums too.
He kept mentioning how he could see CAW wasn't meshing with my family. No, Don, it's not. We like a point to the study, decent grammar for the most part, and proper maps at the very least. He kept saying how CAW is "unique" and that I'd probably have enjoyed one of their other programs much better.
No I wouldn't. I've bought some of your activity packs/notebooking pages in the past and wasn't exactly pleased. The quality was poor and there were even a few "facts" that were totally incorrect. I even emailed the company about the errors and never got a response. That should've been my clue. My bad.
I really thought these forum posts summed up the problem nicely.
My husband tackled the issue of a refund with him but I don't think that will happen. Oh well, I wanted to keep the Christmas books anyhow. Lesson learned.
On a positive note, our Sonlight box arrived Thursday but I'll save that for another post.
Check out other wrap-ups over at Weird, Unsocialized Homeschoolers.