Several years ago I discovered the Homeschool Buyers Co-op and ever since I have been delighted with the organization and have made many purchases. It is a blessed time again, and thanks to the Homeschool Review Crew, we are once again reviewing an updated Homeschool Planet online planner and their new Lesson Plan Marketplace features. I truly enjoyed Homeschool Planet, when we first reviewed the product in 2015, and I have used it often since then. My favorite preference is especially when scheduling something that uses the computer as it makes things so easy as a click for my daughter. For the purposes of this review, I was given a 12-month membership to the planner as well as life-time of the product access to one lesson plan that I can add to my overall planner with a few clicks. (And again in the future, when my next child comes up to. . .
My foreign language choice in high school was French. I took years of classes, but it was not until I went and spent a near-month in French-speaking Canada completely immersed that I truly got a solid hold of the language. (Though, I could use a good review!) Through the blessing of the Homeschool Review Crew this language immersion program for PreK/Elementary school came available from Whistlefritz and I am delighted to be reviewing the Educator’s French Collection. For several years now I have been searching for curriculum to start exposing my children to the French language. My French-Canadian God-mother sent us some fairy tale books and reusable workbooks, but they were more of a second level introduction and I was unsure how to really get us started. With Whistlefritz, I have discovered that truly jumping in is a great way to do it! For the purposes of this review, I have been. . .
My oldest student, for years now, has imagined herself an artist. While her talent is still in it’s fledgling state, she has a passion for art and so far for all mediums. Thus when there was an opportunity to review Thin Stix 6pk of Classic Colors from The Pencil Grip, Inc. through the Homeschool Review Crew, we were excited to jump in to see what we might think. In short, we have found a new staple to keep supplied in our art box! My seven-year-old third grade daughter (eight and transitioning to fourth this summer) loves them. She says they are usable like crayons, but go on more like paint. They dry super super quickly, and after a bit do not smudge either (but you have to wait a minute or so for that). The colors we have a vibrant and perfect for any picture you want to draw. She made a. . .
I have three children that love to color and create, but it is my oldest that verbally states she wants to be an artist when she is an adult. Thus when a review opportunity arose to check out ArtAchieve and their Entire Level I program, we were very excited to volunteer and have been blessed to be a part of this tour with the Homeschool Review Crew. For the purposes of this review we were given access to an online subscription and purchased a few art essential supplies. Some materials we were familiar with from trying other art programs in the past, however some were new and took me a while to find in person. I will note that online I was able to find everything easily, but I wanted to try to source supplies locally and it did take more time. If I were planning to only review this program with. . .
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. What is in the complete set? Our box arrived, and knowing the Memoria Press logo, my third grade daughter was ecstatic. We opened it up and while I was trying to explain to her. . .
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. . .
This year has prompted many new things, especially in math skills for my third grade daughter. When we started the year she was working on a fourth grade math level, and learning the beginning basics of multiplication. She is doing well, but I was excited to jump into the possibility of a review product for enhancing her skills to learn multiplication facts. Through the blessing of the Homeschool Review Crew, we were granted a three month subscription to Times Tables the Fun Way from Times Alive. In this subscription, we have three months to utilize the program to teach multiplication. I’ve found after my daughter completed the 18 lessons within two weeks this may be one of the best ways to learn multiplication and teach times tables, indeed! We “bought” the account and registered and were given special login information. Interesting, and one of the first things to note is that. . .
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. . .
We have a busy school year. We are learning lots of subjects, but my students always want a bit more than I have time to teach. One subject that my oldest daughter really wants is the French language. It was providential timing that the Homeschool Review Crew participating in a review for Middlebury Interactive Languages. For our family, we have been blessed with access to review Elementary French 1: Grades K-2. My daughter who is the main student for this class is working mostly at a third grade level, but she is only seven years old and a complete novice at French. Add on to this the tag along of her Kindergarten sister, and this is the best course for our family. While browsing their website, I discovered that they not only have Elementary French for the primary grades, but levels of courses that go all the way up through. . .