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My School Year (Online Homeschool Record Keeping) {Review}

Recently, we have been using My School Year (Homeschool Record Keeping) from MySchoolYear.com to plan and track our school work. Thanks to the blessings of the TOS Crew, select reviewers will receive an Annual Membership. I have enjoyed organizing our lessons for the summer months and look forward to continuing to see what this program can do for us in the year to come.  My School Year is an incredible tool for homeschool organization. It has more features than I have the time to utilize as I try to be a pen and paper person, but if I had more time to commit to the program and sitting at the computer I would be so organized! This program has pretty charts, email reminders, capibilities to create transcripts and report cards. There are places for putting in graded assignments, attendance tracking, and scheduling of everything dealing with your school age student.. . .

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LearnBop for Families (Online Math) {Review}

My daughter enjoys math but can use all the math practice she can get, so we were excited to get a 12 month subscription to LearnBop for Families from LearnBop!   Before chaos ensued around here we were participants in a review for the Prepaid version (12 month subscription) for either the Single Student Plan, or the Family Plan (access for up to four students). At first we leaned toward the Family Plan, but then I realized this particular product starts in Grade 3, so we used it solely with AppleBlossom. She is almost seven and has started third grade material as of this summer. This is an online subscription. While she has accessed it via our Linux Ubuntu laptop running through Google Chrome moderated browser, for the most part I have her use the program using our iPad2 in the Puffin browser. Why do we use it? It helps me learn a. . .

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Veritas Press Self-Paced Online Bible Old Testament 2: Judges to Kings {Review}

It is no secret that the Creative Madness Mama family is a really big fan of the Veritas Press company. These past few weeks many families of the TOS Review Crew have spent time reviewing different products including the Self-Paced Bible with three review options for the crew including the following: Old Testament 1: Genesis to Joshua Old Testament 2: Judges to Kings New Testament 1: The Gospels We are reviewing Old Testament 2: Judges to Kings for the crew review and continuing it for our 2016-2017 school year for my entering third-grade daughter (she will turn seven-years-old during the summer months). The other product for the crew reviews is a one-year family subscription to VeritasBible.com. Just out of love for the products you can also find another review of Old Testament 1: Genesis to Joshua on Creative Madness Mama as well. I also encourage you to check out the other crew reviews for the. . .

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Minstrel in the Tower E-Guide (Progeny Press) {Review}

We are absolutely a book reading and book story tale loving family. When it comes to school every once in a while I enjoy the hand holding a comprehension guide can provide such as those from Progeny Press. We have been blessed this summer with the Minstrel in the Tower E-Guide from their Lower Elementary (K-3) selections of study guides to work through with AppleBlossom. At this time she is six years old and has just finished her second grade curriculum. She will turn seven in this summer. We received a PDF study guide and I printed off all of chapter one, and then select pages from chapters there on out for the purposes of this review. Right now we are finishing up studying Ancient Egyptian history and moving into Greece and Rome. We have not yet started on the Middle Ages, Renaissance, and Reformation. However, for this review, I thought she would. . .

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Free Summer Reading Programs

We are a book-loving family. I am training my little reader well. Even my two non-readers are addicted to books and pouring over page daily. So of course, when summer comes along what excites me? Summer Reading Programs with free rewards, please! Here are a few that I have discovered for this year…   Barnes and Noble Summer Reading  Download a PDF to chart your reading and turn it in after reading a handful of books. This year the theme is a Triathalon. Four questions are provided, and your student is required to answer at least three. This you turn in, to your location Barnes & Noble store to earn a free book. They are also having a Super Hero and Location election and other printable activities. *Do not forget! As homeschoolers, we do qualify for an Educator Discount Card. Check out more details at BN.com/Educator. If you purchase any. . .

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Hey Mama! Schoolhouse Planner 2016-2017

  The Old Schoolhouse  ~  (http://www.theoldschoolhouse.com/shop/) has released the newest printed version of the Hey Mama! Print Schoolhouse Planner 2016-2017 in perfect timing to start organizing my ideas for the new school year. Hey Mama! How are you? As a homeschooling mama, you know we all need that kinship from time to time, and how about a planner that gets it? Years ago, I discovered the planners from The Old Schoolhouse that I have printed and bound year after year. A few years ago, they introduced my favorite planner, the Hey Mama! planner. This planner gets me. (All I need is a blogger version. *smk*) Year after year I keep trying to use digital planner, maybe the print weekly ones, but so many times it is my preference to reach for this well done physical planner. The 2016-2017 Hey Mama! Schoolhouse Planer is a physical 8×11 spiral bound planner. The planner is dated from. . .

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Essential Skills Advantage (Self-Paced Online Multi-Subject Learning) {Review}

This year we have been introduced to many new things, but easily my children’s voted favorite is Essential Skills Advantage ~ (https://learnwithesa.com/) and their product, the Complete Home Learning Suite. We are whole heartedly enjoying our time with ESA! At first it took me a little while to learn the navigation and point things out to the girls, but once we got set… they were on a roll and requesting it daily! (More school please!)  Thanks to the blessings of reviewing with the TOS Crew, we were granted a one-year online subscription for two students. I chose to enroll both AppleBlossom, my 6-year-old almost-finished-with-second-grader and her sister the Princess, my 4-year-old attention span of a butterfly “spirited” child for the practice. Both girls have access to the entire program from their logins.   The Princess uses ESA mostly on a 3rd generation iPad with my strict supervision. This is not the device I prefer. . .

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Science Shepherd (Self-Paced Online) {Review}

Lately, I have truly discovered the joy in self-paced online courses. We have experienced history, Bible, and latin. Now I can add science! I am truly excited about this. Today, I have the opportunity to tell you about Science Shepherd  ~  (http://www.scienceshepherd.com/) where my second grade (six and a half-year-old daughter) is working her way through Introductory Science. In a complete science curriculum, Introductory Science covers the topics starting with Creation, and moving on to Science Skills and Equipment and on to topics of Earth Science and Life Science including through geology, biology, astronomy, oceanography, meteorolgy, plants and much more! This course, Introductory Science is intended to be used five days per week for a total of 35 weeks. For the purposes of review, we received access to 12-months of daily on-demand video lessons as well as a Level A consumable spiral workbook and Answer Key to go along with the complete science curriculum. . .

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Well-Ordered Language Songs & Chants

The Well-Ordered Language Level 1 Songs & Chants are lively tunes and chants that will help students learn grammar terms in a pleasurable and memorable way. These unique and delightful recordings feature a blend of musical genres and implement repetition, chanting, and sing-along phrases to aid in achieving memorization. You will likely find students singing these catchy songs outside of class! The songs and chants are also an excellent resource for those who want to brush up on their grammar. The 21 tracks cover all of the grammar terms used in both WOL Levels 1A & 1B. A downloadable PDF of the song titles and lyrics is also available at no charge. Special school licensing options are available for purchase. ClassicalAcademicPress.com Now in additional to the awesome program I have told you about previously, in Well-Ordered Language: The Curious Child’s Guide to Grammar, there is a set of Songs &. . .

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Unveiling the Kings of Israel by David Down {Review}

    Purchase Answers in Genesis’ most popular resources at great sale prices— shop today! In the beginning of February, I told you about an awesome book from Answers in Genesis that made me really want to get this one too! If you missed that review, make sure to check back and read about Unwrapping the Pharaohs (review) as well. Many years now, I have slowly been collecting books for our studies. After all, I have known that I wanted to teach Classical Christian Education since my AppleBlossom was just a thought and now our studies for Ancient Egypt are finally here and we use these resources daily. At first, I found myself confused as I was just going on memory and thought that indeed Unwrapping the Pharaohs and Unveiling the Kings of Israel were, in fact, one book until I started writing out my lists and then I was shocked to discover. . .

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D’Aulaires’ Greek Myths (Memoria Press) {Review}

Memoria Press D'Aulaires' Greek Myths Set

Memoria Press  ~  (http://www.memoriapress.com/) is a long-standing favorite of the Creative Madness Mama homeschooling household. Most recently we have been blessed by the TOS Crew to review their very popular D’Aulaires’ Greek Myths set which includes a consumable Student Guide, non-consumable Teacher’s Guide, and cardstock Flashcards. To enhance our studies even more we also bought the Audio version of the book, and thus have read it and listened to it multiple times now.  Normally, each year I share a review of the entire Classical Core Curriculum from Memoria Press and the D’Aulaires’ Greek Myths set can most easily be found within the Memoria Press Third Grade Classical Core Curriculum in both their new standard as well as their Accelerated Core. (Whether I will be able to review the rest of the core, is still pending.) We thoroughly enjoyed using Junior Kindergarten, as well as, Kindergarten, and First Grade, and Second Grade in the. . .

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Institute for Excellence in Writing (IEW): Teaching Writing, Structure & Style {Review}

IEW TWSS

We are still in the beginning of our homeschool journey, yet for years, I have heard about the Institute for Excellence in Writing (IEW) and their main program Teaching Writing, Structure and Style (TWSS). My SisterL sings their praises and uses the program with her children as well. If you’ve been around my blog at all you know that we are fans of the Memoria Press Classical Core Curriculum and more recently MP has recommended IEW Bible Heroes Writing Lessons in Structure and Style during the Second Grade year and has even added in IEW Fun and Fascinating Writing Lessons in Structure and Style to the MP Third Grade Curriculum package.   *If you are reading this in a feed, you may wish to click through to the blog to be able to see the full details on the books. TWSS is a twelve-hour teaching seminar on DVD (but also available. . .

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Linguistic Development through Poetry Memorization (IEW) {Review}

Curriculum research is something that I have been enthralled in for years now. As AppleBlossom is finishing up her second grade school year we have finally gotten a taste of the treasures from Institute for Excellence in Writing  ~  (http://www.iew.com/) including a program that SisterL personally loves as well, Linguistic Development through Poetry Memorization. In the 2016 year, IEW has actually updated the program. So if you have had the original program for years, you’ll want to contact them to discover the updates, additions and changes. For the purposes of this review, we were blessed to receive a poetry memorization set (Teacher’s Manual and CDs) as well as an additional physical student book. Samples are available on the IEW website. In our agreement for the review, we opted to use the material three days a week. By the recommendations of the program, we actually used it more like daily, at least during the. . .

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The History of Art: Creation to Contemporary (Veritas Press) {Review}

My daughter AppleBlossom has stated the desire that she wants to be an artist when she grows up, specifically a painter. As a child, I was in the generation where art programs were cut from schools and the only artwork that I can lend any advice toward is that of needle craft, which is mostly self-taught. I do not have the tools to tell her much more than what I have picked up in reading books and from a summer semester (Maymester actually) of college Art Appreciation. I am curious about art, she is curious about art, we just need the tools to truly learn about art. We have found it! As you may have noticed we are big fans of Veritas Press around here. So much so, that now with the accreditation of Veritas Press Scholars Academy we have enrolled in their diploma program. I have been receiving the VP. . .

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