Do you even have to ask to know that this Creative Madness Mama absolutely adores materials from the people behind Memoria Press? In addition to teaching my own children on their level, I am also slowly working myself through the upper levels of material in continuing my own Classical Christian Education. Right now, I am delighted to have started a portion of the eighth grade Classical History curriculum. Thanks to the blessing of the Homeschool Review Crew, I am able to review Iliad & Odyssey Complete Set, a set of The Iliad & The Odyssey curriculum from Memoria Press which makes up the plans for Classical History in the second semester of a planned eighth grade year. Check back in my archives to read my review on The Book of the Ancient Romans & The Aeneid (review before the release of the teaching DVDs) and the Lesson Plans scheduled for a. . .
In 2011, I added a second child to the mix and my toddler was antsy to get more attention in addition to being a little mama. We dabbled a bit with a book box curriculum of good nursery readers, however, it was in 2012-2013 that our Memoria Press adventure started. At the age of three, my book loving daughter started in on our K3 Junior Kindergarten with an extremely wonderful year that we still look back on with extremely fond memories. In 2013-2014, it was our K4 year and our curriculum was the Memoria Press Classical Core Curriculum for Kindergarten. In 2014, I added a third child to the mix. At this time, my next toddler was not ready for anything officially school related and she continue to tag along in read alouds and child play becoming the princess she is today. Around this time, Memoria Press started beta releasing their Simply. . .
My plotting and planning for homeschooling my kiddos has been years in effort. One of my earliest purchases has been a set of the McGuffey Eclectic Readers. I have them, but we’ve never really had a plan about how to go about using them, that is until now with the addition of Eclectic Foundations Language Arts program to our curriculum pile. Thanks to the blessing of the Homeschool Review Crew, we were blessed with a set of Eclectic Foundations Language Arts Level C materials for review. I am utilizing these with my third grade daughter. She is an excellent reader, and reads all the time, but does not like to read aloud to others much at all and this is a skill that I have always planned to use the McGuffey readers to enhance and strengthen. Eclectic Foundations is giving me the tools to do so efficiently! This language arts curriculum is. . .
Lately, I have become pretty passionate about putting forth an effort to use some services to make a little bit of money from home. Yes, I am a stay-at-home homeschooling mama to three littles (and one on the way) all under the age of seven. I cross stitch and read books in my spare time, but I want to try to pay for my blog expenses and pull down our debt a little bit. While I do not want to bombard you dear readers with ads, I have put up a page with what I’m calling my affiliate mall containing links that would give us a few cents and possibly dollars eventually when you purchase using my links. I have added a few rotating ads in my sidebar as well. But never you fear, I’m not getting rich quick. *Dude, there are affiliate links in this post. Use ’em and. . .
My oldest daughter has long said that she desires to be an artist when she grows up. She specifically wants to be a painter, but to use all sorts of mediums. Lately, she has discovered writing and asked if she could be an author. When I told her she could be both, she had glitter in her eyes with the possibilities and excitement. While we are trying to education in a Classical Christian Education manner in our homeschool, I often am trying to find ways to bring in art to let her work her artistic muscles and pursue her dreams. Art is a broad and important part of life, and fostering artistic expression in kids sets them on a positive path, whether it’s hobbyist, professional, as an outlet or pure aesthetic expression. The common thread is that it is creative, expressive, it can inspire us, and lead to. . .
Lately, I am doing a bit of upkeep behind the scenes on the blog. Pretty much our Christmas gifts have been purchased and this year it is my oldest that is getting the big gifts. Under the tree when we get to Grandmama’s house she will discover the first box of a Little Passports subscription to Science Expeditions as well as a second envelope containing the first package of a subscription to Discover the Little Passports USA Edition. So while I’m updating my affiliate links and banners, right now I’m seeing all the excitement and secretly knowing how delighted she will be to open those packages in the next few weeks!
Let’s be honest, ya’ll. What homeschooling mama doesn’t enjoy freebies? I’m always on the look out for good things, and this is an awesome time of year as annually the Institute of Excellence in Writing provides a plethora of freebies and discounts that are amazing to find! It starts December 26th and continues with something new EVERY SINGLE DAY through January 6th, 2017!! https://iew.com/affiliate/126700/Christmas16/ is my affiliate link and while most things are freebies, if you happen to stumble upon a great deal while you’re there – use it and you will bless my family with a few dollars in affiliate funds.
While quite often we use a full curriculum, every once in a while we really want to focus on something to firmly learn a skill. This is one of the things that I adore about The Critical Thinking Co.™ and I have found myself super excited about their brand new Sentence Diagramming: Beginning (Grades: 3-12+) book. We have been doing lesson after lesson and really enjoying ourselves as well as learning and firming our language art skills previously worked on in the past as well. For the purposes of this review, we received a 68-page paperback 8×11″ book with 12 lessons through out on a beginning level. I believe there will also be a next level 1 and level 2 books available soon if they are not already available. Last year, we worked with another of their language arts books featuring Fun-Time Phonics!. In this review period, there are other homeschool families. . .
Last year, I discovered the wonder of Homeschool Legacy and the unit studies that Sharon has written to share with other parents in our own organization of teaching a particular topic in a great immersion for several weeks. Last year, from my time with The Forest for the Trees Homeschool Legacy unit-study I knew there was also a Lewis & Clark study, and this would be the perfect time to look into it! This year, we have actually been working on the Lewis & Clark: From Sea to Shining Sea (7-weeks) as well as this review product Christmas Comes to America (4-weeks) Once-a-Week Unit Study. With the foundation of Homeschool Legacy’s Once-a-Week Unit Study Forest for the Trees I feel inspired about our learning possibilities and encouraged to run with enthusiasm to topics that inspire and delight. This feeling continues into my experiences with Christmas Comes to America as well! The joy. . .
While working on the Homeschool Review Crew, I have discovered that most of the time we are reviewing homeschool helps and curriculum. However, every once in a while there is something that is just perfect for gift giving season and comes from a family company that fits right in with the values of our home life oriented family. This year, we have been blessed to discover CrossTimber and specifically their Personalized Framed Plaque with Name Meaning and Bible Verse. Through out the process of making decisions, placing my order, and even with some alterations needed to be made the customer service was phenomenal. John of CrossTimber was completely on top of things. He is very informative and had answers to all of my questions and didn’t rest until we were completely satisfied with our purchase. Originally, I wanted to order a Name Meaning plaque for my son with his first and. . .
Some days my mama-teaching brain just doesn’t want to function, but was have got to get some learning accomplished. In my opinion, that is the best time to bring out the Educeri website! Educeri ……. Educeri a division of DataWORKS is an online website full of lesson plans and lessons. In a school setting, I image they would set up well with a whiteboard program. At home, they are a great supplement, but I bet you could plan around them as well. For the purposes of our review with the Homeschool Review Crew we have been granted 12 months to the Educeri Lesson Subscription Service. The subscription is open-ended as in it is good for K-12 grades and all lessons, not just a certain range! Because we came into this already into the school year, we are set for the most part with certain subjects, so I chose to use. . .
As you may have noticed, I am a book review blogger through and through. We are also a classical and living books homeschool family and love to read and enhance our learning topics by reading more and further on a topic. The variety of books, from Carole P. Roman, are right on target for what we need. For the purposes of this review for the Homeschool Review Crew, we were sent four books to use in our homeschool from a series, If You Were Me and Lived in… brought to you by Carole P. Roman and Awaywegomedia.com. We also have since bought others on Amazon Kindle as well. *Within the rest of this post you will find Amazon affiliate links. The use of my links will not affect your prices but will bless my family. Thank you for your using them!* If You Were Me and Lived in…Ancient Greece (An Introduction to Civilizations. . .
For over the past three years working with the Homeschool Review Crew, one of my favorite things is getting to review products on my wishlist. Another one of my favorite things is discovering companies and products of which I was not yet familiar that I find are delightful for my homeschool and I cannot wait to recommend them to others. Today, I get to introduce you to Everyday Education, LLC from where we were blessed to receive a digital version of their product Perfect Reading, Beautiful Handwriting. A writing program for handwriting that is appropriate for either an elementary student or one of any age for remedial practice, even adults! The Perfect Reading, Beautiful Handwriting program includes 60 step-by-step lessons and is completely phonics-based using an italic handwriting technique. The program itself is available as an eBook which I was given but also as a print perfect bound, consumable 8.5 X 11″ book or. . .
Within the last few years, a really amazing company I discovered is Heirloom Audio Productions. Right now, they are designing an audio theatre series based on the adventures of G.A. Henty novels. We love using audio books, and audio theatre to enhance our studies and this years option for review was perfect timing as we are wrapping up our Egyptian study series. I was absolutely blessed to receive for review an Audio CD copy of The Cat of Bubastes and a download of extras including a Study Guide, Soundtrack, MP3 of the material from the CD and more. At home, we have listened to the CD in our living room while working on other activities. We have added it to our three hour Wednesday drive and listened more than once. We have also listened to it again while headed to Ballet & Lyrical lessons as well as to the library when checking out. . .
As I have added more children to my homeschool routine, I have discovered that each student is a different learner. Right now I have a very advanced young third grader, and a five-year-old kindergartener just on the very beginning of her adventure to learn how to read. Thus, it was perfect timing to discover Spencer Learning and their Ultimate Phonics Reading Program and try it out with my younger daughter. The Ultimate Phonics Reading Program is a downloadable software. For our purposes, we downloaded this program to my personal iMac computer running iOS El Capitan. We have had no technical issues to remark of. When we open the program and click on fill screen, or full screen, I love how it is the same size as it was before I clicked the button, but it just blacks-out the background and removes all distraction while you are working on the phonics lesson. This. . .