Homeschool Planet – A Homeschool Crew Review

Free Curriculum

When you are a homeschool mom to 4 and you have appointments besides school, you need to find a planner that will work for all your needs in one place. Homeschool Planet has done that for me with their Online Lesson Planner. 

Free Curriculum

Homeschool Planet is an online digital planner that allows you to not only plan your lessons for each child, but also their chores, and all your other appointments. You can view all of this in Calendar View, which is just as it sounds or Planner View which is a simple to-do list style. Each of these also has the option to be viewed by Day, Week or Month.

Homeschool Planet

Now, if you are like me and have 6 people in the house that you are planning for, you might have a concern about how much will be on the screen when you are looking at it. I was happy to find that I could view each person’s individual calendar as needed versus a very full one all the time.

Homeschool Planet

I found the actual setup of this program to be very easy. I could find simple step by step tutorials if I had a problem. I set up individual log-ins for Moe Man and Ray Ray, but we never did use this. I found that printing their calendar each week worked better for them. Little Miss was thrilled to have her own print out of her daily lessons and chores as well.

Homeschool Planet

Each week, I would plan the lessons and enter them into the program. I had some that I could schedule for the whole year because they were simple repeating lessons, but for the others I would do it weekly. If there was a day that we ended up missing, the program would give us an option to move the schedule forward instead of having to delete and re-enter everything. This was my lifesaver!

Lesson Plans

This year, Homeschool Planet now has the Lesson Plan Marketplace. This is a wonderful new addition that I have fallen in love with! Instead of me needing to plan everything out, I could simply click a few buttons and had Ray Ray’s math lessons set up for the year! When I got this all entered in, I realized that not only did they include the lessons from his math book, but also some fun activities from the Resource tab. These made his math lessons fun and not so boring.

Not only that, but I also grabbed the free Virtual Field Trip lesson plan and we have enjoyed visiting the National Aquarium, US Capitol, and Mark Twain’s Home so far! This lesson plan comes with everything you need to take a virtual trip to 6 different locations. The recommendation is to do one “trip” a week, and I loved having that be the thing to look forward to on Fridays.

What is really awesome, is that during the month of June, not only can you try Homeschool Planet for 30 days for free, but you can also get one lesson plan for free! Yes, I said free! This is only for the month of June and does expire on 6/30/2017, so be sure to hop on over and check it out before it is too late!

I love paper and pencil, but I also love not having to scribble and erase when life happens and our plans change. Homeschool Planet has given the freedom to easily change what needs to be changed and I can still print out the week for each child to have their own paper copy if needed. I really liked Homeschool Planet before, but now with the lesson plan option, I am in love! This online planner has made my planning work easier and for that I am forever thankful!

Homeschool Planet {Homeschool Buyers Co-op Reviews}
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Algebra for Breakfast ~ A Homeschool Crew Review

Algebra For Breakfast

The word Algebra in our house is not met with smiles and jumps for joy. Instead that word is met with frowns, fits and meltdowns. Moe Man loves to do anything hands on, so checking out any math supplement that is hands on is a go for us. Algebra for Breakfast is just what we needed to help him in his struggles with Algebra.

Algebra For Breakfast

Algebra for Breakfast is a simple online math enrichment program that will help your child learn more about algebra in a fun, hands on way. For this review, we had access to the Grades 5-6 section, but there is also a Grades 3-4 section as well. While these are based on grade levels, we found that the Grade 5-6 level worked great for Moe Man who is struggling in high school algebra lessons.

The Grades 5-6 starts off with 8 different prep activities. These activities will help your child get ready for algebra by giving them games to play. What child is going to be mad while playing a game? Even at 16 they still love a game or two now and again, even if they won't admit it.

Math Enrichment

After getting through the prep activities, we started in on the lessons. These lessons were easier than I had thought they would be. All we had to do was watch a video, and work on a worksheet that goes along with the video. This took us about 20-30 minutes in total. Not bad considering this included putting away of the hands-on material we were using.

Algebra for Breakfast starts off easy. It is meant to be easy. Your child should be having fun with the program before they start getting into the hard stuff. And this is something I noticed right away with Moe Man. He was having fun, and I was happy to see this when it came to Moe Man and math!

Since this was not our math curriculum, but rather a supplement, we would use this 3 days a week, unless Moe Man wanted more days during the week. After three, that was up to him! Since it was easier, Moe Man didn't mind doing more than three days of lessons each week. There were even times when he didn't understand something in his regular math curriculum and would come back to a previous lesson in Algebra for Breakfast and re-watch that lesson to work on more understanding.

Moe Man really enjoyed using this math supplement. This was something he could easily use. He just logged on and went to work on the lesson he needed. There were no CDs to lose and I didn't have to worry about a pile of books or DVDs to manage. Since the teaching was done by the videos, I didn't need to have a teacher's manual, although there were a few times when Moe Man would question something and I wouldn't know what to say. At the end of the lessons there is a Parent's Corner. This is simply the answer keys to most of the worksheets that are available.

Math Supplement

Since this is just a math supplement, I would say this is great for ANY child who is struggling with learning algebra, whether they are homeschooled or not. If you want to read other reviews on the products, click on the image below!

Bob Hazen's Algebra Lessons {Algebra for Breakfast Reviews}

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High School Essay Intensive ~ A Homeschool Crew Review

high school writing

Writing, the one thing that Moe Man does not like to do, or at least not for school. I have tried everything with little to no luck. That is until Andrew Pudewa and his team at the Institute for Excellence in Writing (IEW). We have been able to move forward with the products that IEW provides and we took the leap into the High School Essay Intensive writing program to help Moe Man with his essay writing skills.

High School Essay Intensive is not a full language arts curriculum. Rather this is a great supplement for high school students who are looking to work on their essay skills or even to prepare for the ACT Essay. There is no set schedule, not even a suggested schedule. Instead, your child is free to use this in any way that works for them!

high school writing

Included in this high school writing program are 5 DVDs (6.5 hours) from which your child will watch the lectures (well, discussions) from Andrew on the strategies and styles of essays. We also got a code to have access to video streaming if you would have a time when you would not be able to be next to a DVD player. There are handouts that go along with the videos to help your child in the note taking process and the Portable Walls for the Essayist.

This program is broken down into four parts.

Part 1A: General Strategies for Essay Writing: Length and Structure

  • Initial Exercise
  • A Hurt and Rescue Operation  
  • What is an essay?
  • Two Questions Writers Need to Ask
  • Translating Assignment Length to Paragraphs
  • Types of Paragraph
  • The TRIAC Paragraph Model
  • Essay Models

Part 1B: General Strategies for Essay Writing: Invention and Style

  • Canons of Rhetoric
  • Invention
  • Practicing Common Topics of Invention
  • Practice with TRIAC Outline
  • Style
  • Sentence Patterns
  • Literary Devices: Schemes and Tropes
  • Practice with Sentence Openers and Figures of Speech

Part 2: Understanding and Preparing for the New ACT® Essay

  • ACT General Guidelines
  • The Assignment
  • Strategies for Planning
  • Strategies for Writing
  • Strategies for Proofing

Part 3: Understanding and Preparing for the Redesigned SAT® Essay

  • General Guidelines
  • The Assignment
  • Annotating
  • Handy Annotation System
  • Annotating Practice
  • Strategies for Planning
  • Strategies for Writing
  • Using Effective Vocabulary
  • Strategies for Proofing

Part 4: Strategies for the Personal Essay

  • General Guidelines
  • Sample Essay Prompts
  • Strategies for Planning: Pop out from the Crowd
  • Strategies for Writing, Editing, and Proofreading
  • A Not-So-Secret Secret   
  • Final Practice
  • Concluding Comments
  • Last Bits of Advice for Life

essay writing

Being broken down in this way, you are able to see where your child needs to be and go from there. We started with Part One with Moe Man since I knew he had some work to do. This was simple and easy to add into our day, or not depending on the day. Some days I would have Moe Man work on more, but other days we would just talk about what he had learned so far.

Now that we have finished both parts of Part One, Moe Man is ready to work on writing an essay with some knowledge of what he is doing. My goal is to have him work on the Personal Essay in Part Four next, and we will be able to finish up with the ACT and SAT Essays.

Moe Man has always loved listening to Andrew talk. And when I say he loves to listen, he actually listens! This alone makes me love these programs. But seeing what Moe Man learns makes it even better! Having handouts that are easy to fill out while watching the DVDs gives Moe Man the confidence to know that he is learning and can do something like write an essay.

writing program

We are in love with the High School Essay Intensive writing program from the Institute for Excellence in Writing, and yes, I would recommend this to any high school student who needs to work on their ability to write an essay, or for those who are getting ready for the ACT or SAT Essay.

High School Essay Intensive {Institute for Excellence in Writing Reviews}

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Online CLEP Test Preparation with SpeedyPrep ~ A Homeschool Crew Review

Having a child with special needs brings a lot of challenges. One of them is looking past high school for these children. Ever since the first day Moe Man had been with us, I had big dreams for him. Knowing that he could and would do anything he set his mind on as long as I gave him the tools necessary to reach those goals.

While Moe Man is unsure of what he wants to do after high school, I know I want him to be ready for college if that is what he wants to do! SpeedyPrep is a great way for me to give Moe Man the CLEP preparation material needed to take and pass the CLEP exam.

SpeedyPrep has 24 courses that cover the facts, concepts, vocabulary and processes that Moe Man will need to know to pass his CLEP. This is not a curriculum, rather it is just a means to study what you have already learned during your high school years. It is not recommended to use the SpeedyPrep test until after you have finished the course in your high school study.

With consistent use of SpeedyPrep and completion of the course (90-100%), and of course passing, you will be guaranteed to pass your CLEP test!

SpeedyPrep is set up as a flash card question system. You simply get into the course you want to study and go straight to the questions in the study session. You are able to pick and choose topics within the course, or you can work on all of them at once. From personal experience, I would not recommend picking all of them unless you have some time on your hands!

As you go through the questions, you will find more information about each one as you answer it. Whether you get it right or wrong, you have the option to study it further. Your goal is to work through these questions and to get as many of them correct as you can. As you do this, you will have to option to study the ones you got incorrect and work on getting them all right.

There is a nifty little bar that will follow your progress as you work through your course. This bar will only move as you complete the questions. While there is a plethora of video knowledge, watching these videos will help you learn the information, but these will not prepare you for the CLEP test. These are only here to help you learn, you must practice with the questions to get the full benefit of this program!

I have to admit, as much as I thought Moe Man was ready for this, I realized he was not. This program is a great program and I could see many other students in Moe Man's age group that would benefit from it greatly. While he was not ready to use it, I decided that I wanted to see more about it and took my turn using it personally.

I really love how this was set up. I did not remember as much as I thought I would, but loved the videos and the explanations that were there to help me when I didn't know the answer. I was able to figure out how to use this with minimal problems and was impressed by how much I did re-learn from it!

This is what happens when we get something wrong or don't know the answer. This is a great chance to learn more about it. 

This is a great program for those students who are working towards taking their CLEP exam. I plan to revisit this with Moe Man next year and really look forward to helping him advance in his education with resources like this!

Check out some of the other reviews of this program right here:

College Level Examination Program Preparation {SpeedyPrep Reviews}

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The Iliad and The Odyssey ~ A Homeschool Crew Review

When Moe Man picked up a random copy of The Iliad on a free book book shelf, he told me that it sounded like an interesting book. We brought it home, but it found a spot on the book shelf and we forgot about it. Until I heard about the Iliad & Odyssey Complete Set from Memoria Press. I was happy to find a way to work these classics into our homeschool days.

Included in the Iliad & Odyssey Complete Set are the Samuel Butler translation of The Iliad and The Odyssey, a student guide for each book, a teacher guide for each book and a set of DVDs for each book. These DVDs are a life saver for me as mom, as they help to teach this class!

The day we got this program in the mail, Moe Man was quick to grab The Iliad, which was a bigger copy with larger print than the free one he had previously grabbed. He preceded to walk away without a word to me. This kid and books, they are a love hate relationship. He loves to read, but hates the work that goes with them. Knowing that I had a book that he was interested in and the materials that would help him, I was just as excited to get started on this study.

We started with The Iliad. It was the book he chose, so I wasn't going to argue, plus The Iliad is the earlier writing. While Moe Man took the book instantly, I took to the Teacher's Guide to see what I needed to know. Most of Moe Man's high school work is independent work, but this one is set up for a classroom setting. Even though this was set up this way, we were able to easily adapt this for our homeschool setting. It is also suggested that all of Homer would be able to be completed in 18 weeks, which averages to 4.5 hours a week, we did spread this out a little more to work with Moe Man.

Our schedule was spaced out a little more than most homeschools would need to do. We spent one day reading the book that we were on. The next two days Moe Man would watch the video that went with the book while working on the Student Guide questions for that book. These two days also included discussions with me, working on Background and Drills, discussions about the book and time spent marking and studying the questions that will be on the test.

Using this schedule, we are able to work on about 2 books a week. This means that we will be spending about 12 weeks in each of the two epics.

The Teacher's Guide has everything I need to effectively teach about these epics to Moe Man. I have the answers to the Student Guide questions and all the notes for the background and drills, the discussion help and extra teacher notes. This gives me a solid foundation that I would be able to help Moe Man with these epics. But this was not all I was given. I was given DVDs, yes DVDs that help teach each book as we read through the epic.

The DVDs are taught by Sean Brooks, a master teacher at one of Highlands Latin Schools. These lessons, or lectures, run about half an hour or so in length and Mr. Brooks talks about each book in a way that even I can understand. As we go through each book, we are able to work on answering the questions in the Student Guide. Not all the answers are there, and those that are, are not written in black and white. These DVDs make the program work for us and for Moe Man.

Overall, this was a great program. Moe Man has not argued when it came time to do this each day. Some days he had a harder time understanding, but the DVDs helped explain what he didn't understand. While I had to be a bigger role in this than his other classes, I didn't mind. It did not take up too much time each week, and I actually enjoyed this myself.

Memoria Press offers many great products! There are some of these that have been reviewed by other members of the team. Want to see what they are? Check out the reviews right here:

First Form Greek, Iliad/Odyssey and American History {Memoria Press Reviews}

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Blogging Through the Alphabet ~ H is for Homeschooling High School

Welcome, welcome and welcome again! We are so glad to have you back for another week and another letter of Blogging Through the Alphabet with myself and Annette from A Net in Time! This week we are conquering the letter H. We have had so much fun up to this point and hope you will continue to join us!

Homeschooling High School

The dreaded ages of many homeschool families, high school! I have heard many times, "Will you homeschool all the way through high school?" As if this time of the homeschool journey was any harder than the first 8-10 years! This year Moe Man will be finishing up his Sophomore Year of high school, and starting in on his Junior Year in the fall. I don't know where the time has come, but there was never a moment when I stopped and said "You're too old, time to stop what is working for you!"


When it comes to homeschooling high school, the first thing you want to look at are the resources available to you. There are of course, tons of blogs that tell you how they have done it, how they are doing it. These are great, but they are not you. Remember this. Your child will learn different from every other child out there. I personally have three favorite sites that I go to for my resources:

This site is perfect for giving me the main resources. They have a lot of free links that talk about what you need to know and how to do it.

Being from Minnesota, I like to go here if I don't find what I need on the HSLDA site. I also like to see the state specific information that I can find here.

I love, love, love this site! Lee Binz is here for us as homeschool parents with kids in High School. She has what we need and if she doesn't she tells us where to go! I have read several of her books that she has available and love her free webinars and many other free resources.


As you get into the high school grades, making sure you pick the right curriculum does become a thing. You need to make sure that your child has the right amount of credits and in the right subjects so that they can graduate. If this seems daunting, have them help you! When I was in high school at the public school, I was given my list of options, the requirements needed to graduate and was told to make wise choices. I expect the same out of my kids.

While I have the final say over the chosen courses, I allow Moe Man to pick his favorite areas and classes. I will tell him what the core subjects are that he needs, he picks them out and then we spend about a week or so looking at electives. This is where he is given the reins, so it takes a little longer.

This is where I love to find sites that help me help him come up with ideas. If you go to Pinterest, you can find a lot of blog posts about homeschooling high school, the newest and coolest curriculum choices, but sometimes you just want something simple. These are just that and they are on the lower end of the price scale.

This site contains all you need to homeschool your high school student, and it is free! I love this site and we use many of their subjects in our homeschool. Right now, Moe Man is taking the Biology with Lab course and loves it! I love that I can have him find something here and know that I will have all that I need to include it in his transcript.

While this is not a free website, the cost of this is minimal, considering you have classes and resources for everyone in the family. Moe Man is in love with the Drive Thru History that he is using to supplement his current World History course.

This is a great page from Mercy is New. There are so many good choices here, and for the low cost of Free, a homeschool mom couldn't be happier!

Are you at a complete loss of what you could/should be teaching to your child? This list has it all. All the required courses, all the different electives you can choose from, everything. If you have a child who just doesn't know what to do, send them over to look at this list. If they don't walk away from this list with an idea or two, they are not ready for high school.


Most of all, as a homeschool mom of a homeschool high schooler, you need support. Support from your family, your husband, and other homeschool moms. Reach out. Talk about your fears, talk about your struggles. Not everyone has a family who supports their decision to homeschool, especially through high school. If you have that kind of support, love it, embrace it and use it!

If you don't have that kind of support, find another source of support. While I do have the support of my family, sometimes I need a different kind of support. I find that online. It may sound silly, but I do. I am a member of some great Facebook groups that support each other as homeschool moms. Not only that, but I have found a friend or two who is in the same situation I am in, and we have bonded. I know that I can reach out to them when I need to, and I am there for them when they need me as well.

When it comes down to it, homeschooling high school is really not that scary. I feel more stress at the younger ages to build that strong base, by the time high school arrives, I know they have the base and I just need to keep the paperwork to prove it!

What scares you most about homeschooling high school?

Your Turn to Share Your Letter H Post

Hopkins Homeschool


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December 4, 2016 ~ Homeschool Highlights

Wow, is it really December? I can not even think about where this time has gone. Here I am planning our Christmas vacation, yet I remember the first day of our new school year. I feel that we are speeding through yet another year, and I am not ready for this to happen! Yet there is nothing that I can do about this other than keeping moving.


This last month we have been so busy having fun with the learning that we are busy doing. Everyone has had something fun that they were doing. Between the lessons, the experiments and the games, we have something always happening. I can't wait to tell you all about it!

High School

Moe Man is busy with his sophomore year of school. I am still having a tough time with that one. We have fallen in love with Easy Peasy All in one High School as I have told you before. We really have not strayed much from this curriculum. We may tweak a few assignments to fit his style, but we are working hard at keeping this working. He is loving his Biology class on Easy Peasy and the hands-on experiments that we are able to do for our lab section.

High School Experiments

We are using the World History curriculum from CHSH and love this. I love the simple aspect of this, yet the add on ideas that are a part of the teacher's guide take the learning a little further, which is just what we need to keep this interesting for him.

We have also started a simple Semester long Geology course, Fossils, Dinosaurs and Cave Men from Patrick Nurre. This is such a fun geology course that includes fossils, yes, real fossils to make this a hands-on course that we will be having fun with for a long time!

Second Grade

Ray Ray, oh Ray Ray. Yes, this is a phrase that I say almost daily! This kid…he has taken a lot of his learning into his own hands and really doesn't like me hovering. I still do, but from a little bit of distance. Ray Ray has been using the second level of Easy Peasy All in one Homeschool. He loves how independent this curriculum is for him. He logs on, does his work and walks away. Yes, just like that. Some days I wonder if this is enough, but with him, this is plenty!

Brain Cap

The lessons are great and includes worksheets when needed, copying work into notebooks and making fun projects, like his brain hat. These are great ways to keep him interested! The reading that he is working on, we have found on LibroVox and this means that he can follow along instead of being bored with just reading. Not only that, but he is officially working on some Keyboarding skills! Yes, all of this is free with Easy Peasy All in on Homeschool!

Keyboarding Lessons


Little Miss is my overachiever. She wants to do it all. She wants worksheets, one on one with mom and she wants to read, now! We started with Easy Peasy, but found this was too slow for her at the younger levels. Yet, when I tried to jump her forward, it was too much. I had to step back and look at some other options.

I found Reading the Alphabet from This Reading Mama. This is something we tried years ago with Ray Ray, and it was too much for him, yet this is perfect with Little Miss. Right here is the perfect example of how each child is a different style of learner. Little Miss loves everything that Ray Ray couldn't handle with Reading the Alphabet. She loves that she is reading right away, she loves the worksheets and the hands-on approach, while still being able to work on the computer with the Starfall program.

Reading the Alphabet

So, this is where we are at, each child is learning with the style that works for them and Baby Girl is following everyone trying to keep up. I have a feeling she is going to be my biggest challenge in the years to come.

While we are happy where we are right now, we are looking in the future and I have a few plans to change a few things shortly. Not to mention that, but we also have a new year with the Homeschool Review Crew that will be starting soon. This means new products and new learning! I look forward to sharing all of that with you in the months to come! I hope you will keep following along and see where this homeschooling journey takes us!

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Educeri Ready to Teach Lessons ~ A Homeschool Crew Review

When homeschooling, you find a time when you need to supplement your child's learning. This can happen either when they are struggling, or when they want to expand on what they are currently learning. When you have 3, almost 4 kids who are homeschooling, you look for an option that can cover more than one grade and more than one subject to help keep your expenses down. But where do you find something that fits this? We had the chance to review Educeri …….  Educeri a division of DataWORKS and their Educeri Lesson Subscription Service.

Educeri Homeschool Crew Review

What Is It

Educeri Lesson Subscription Service is a magical site that provides our homeschool with over 1,000 lesson plans for you to access. With all of these lesson plans, you cover all grades Kindergarten up to 12th grade in subjects like Math, Science, Language Arts, History, even Art. PE and Music.

Educeri Lesson Subscription Service Reviews

Each one of the lessons is presented in a PowerPoint format. There are student handouts that go with the lessons for your child to fill out while learning, or after you are done presenting the lesson.

How We Used It

I was excited to check out the Lesson Subscription Service. I looked forward to having help with my lesson planning and finding supplements for my children. I spent time looking over everything that was available and checking to see what we could use. I was able to find a lot of the core subjects, especially for the lower grades. This was nice for Ray Ray and Little Miss, but I was hoping for more for Moe Man and his high school subjects, especially the extra electives.

Educeri Kindergarten Options

I found at least one lesson for each one of the children, while it was easy for the little two, I spent some time with looking for Moe Man. I added these into the current curriculum that we were using. I had to set time aside to work with each child, as the lessons required me to help out with the teaching instead of allowing them to self-teach.

Once I had all the small details worked out, I was able to actually teach the lessons. For Moe Man, I spent more time searching. There were limited lessons for this age and these subjects. I was able to find a language arts lesson that we needed to brush up on, so we sat down with Determine a Central Idea and Analyze. This lesson had the PowerPoint for me to teach and an additional Student Handout to have him work on.

I went over the idea with Moe Man in the lesson. I made sure that he understood what we were talking about, and we were able to work on the handout as we worked on the lesson. I actually felt like I was sitting at the front of a classroom teaching this to a room full of students. The lesson gave me everything that I needed to feel this confident, even if it was just one student instead of a full classroom.

I did this same thing with Ray Ray and Little Miss. Once again, teaching the lesson and working with them on their handouts so they would be able to practice what they were learning.

2nd Grade Language Arts

What We Thought

While I was hoping for a lot more independent learning with this program, I actually found myself spending more time teaching it. Yes, it was less planning time as I was able to open and go, but I had to be there teaching it. This is tough when it comes to a homeschool mom of more than one child. I loved the lesson plan options for the lower grades as there was so many, but when I needed something for Moe Man, it was hard.

The kids showed improvement when using these lessons. We enjoyed the break from our normal curriculum and loved the way this was set up. It was easy to teach from and easy for the kids to pick up on.

We were not the only family to check out Educeri and their Lesson Subscription Service. Want to hear some other reviews? Check them out right here!

Educeri Lesson Subscription Service

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Getting Started With French ~ A Homeschool Crew Review

Learning a new language can be a daunting task. What if I told you that you could find a program that works great for homeschoolers or self-taught students of any age? Would you want to know more? Well let me tell you about Armfield Academic Press and their Getting Started With French program!

Homeschool Crew Review

What Is It

Getting Started With French is a soft covered book with 172 simple lessons. This book is designed to be self-contained and easy to be self-taught. The purchase of this book, gives you everything that you need to teach yourself, or your child how to speak French. You don't need to buy anything else, the MP3s of the pronunciations are included as a download with this book.

While there are 172 lessons and you could do one each day, this is meant to be slef-paced. If you need more time on one lesson, spend more time lesson, go for it!

At the beginning of this book, you will find a How To Use This Book section. This part of the book tells you all about the rest of the book. Each lesson will start with a new word or words that will be in bold writing. You will find this word along with the definition of this word. You will also learn how to pronounce this word. While this will be written, you will be able to hear it in the MP3 download.


There are no real tests or quizzes when it comes to this book, however, you are able to go back a lesson or two and verbally ask yourself or your child questions on what was learned. The lessons are quick, and effective. They should take you no longer than 30 minutes a day. This is a program where more is less. Shorter, yet more frequent practice is the key here.

How We Used It

Ray Ray is my French boy. He wants to run away to France and sleep under the Eiffel Tower one day. Because of this fascination, he is open to any and every way to learn the language. Ray Ray set his schedule when it came to this curriculum. I did not want to force this, and since it is described as a self-paced program, I followed that. I would see how much he remembered from the day or two before moving forward. If he seemed to want or need more time with a lesson, I gave it to him.

While we didn't have an actual lesson schedule, we made sure that we were using this program every day during the week. I would sit down and listen to the pronunciation with Ray Ray, we would talk about the lesson together and really had fun with this! We did not just listen to the MP3s and move on, we spoke the words we were learning and talked about the lessons and what we were learning with the grammar and language rules.


What We Thought

Ray Ray loves French. He loves easy school. This was the best of both worlds for him. The lessons were short, and without an actual schedule, he was able to make sure he was learning. He didn't have to struggle as he went along, and loved listening to the pronunciations and author commentary on the lessons. Seeing the words in front of him and hearing them at the same time really made things click for him.

There are no frilly pictures in the book. No nonsense, just the lessons. They are written so that Ray Ray could understand them and I could understand them as well. Any age and any person would be able to understand these nice lessons. I love watching Ray Ray learn, and I love being able to learn at the same time. I love not having to dig through a bunch of curriculum each day and that I just open the book and MP3s and he basically does this on his own.

This book is re-usable. Do you know what that means? I can save money and Little Miss or Baby Girl can use this when they are ready to learn a new language. If Moe Man decided that he wants to learn French for his foreign language, he can start at any time. I don't have to buy workbooks for each child. I don't have to worry about anything extra. This is something that is key to me when it comes to finding homeschool curriculums!

We were one of 50 families to try this program out. Want to hear about the other experiences? Check out their reviews right here:

Introducing Getting Started with French {Armfield Academic Press}

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Crew Disclaimer

10th Grade Curriculum Choices for 2016-2017

Here we are, over half way through August. Do you know what that means? To our house that means the new grades have started and the kids are back at school after their two straight weeks off. This also means that I have a 10th grader. I am not ready for this, but I don't have a choice.

I remember the first day that Moe Man came to stay with us. That first day, he was a week away from turning 6 and not even ready for Kindergarten. I knew that I had to plan a birthday party and get him ready to start Kindergarten in public school. At this time, this was the scariest thing I could be doing, being a new mom to an almost 6-year-old and getting him registered for Kindergarten. Little did I know, that planning his 10th grade homeschool year would be even more scary! No longer am I "trusting" someone else with his learning, it is all up to me! After a few prayers, some trials and errors and a lot of planning, I think I know what we will be doing this year!

Our 2016-2017 10th Grade Picks


10th grade Math is typically Geometry. This has been a fear for some time. Moe Man had had a hard time with math and we have been working hard to get him caught up. This is where year-round homeschooling has helped! Moe Man doesn't forget as much if we keep up with our lessons. Thanks to this, we will be starting Geometry using Math Without Borders. I am super excited about using this curriculum, as I think it will be laid out perfect for him. I have a review coming up soon on this!


This year we will be doing a Biology course. After looking at a few different ones, I have decided to use the one provided over at Easy Peasy High School. This course covers everything that he will need including a virtual lab. The best part? This is offered for free! I have been so thankful in finding this website and all they offer!


This year, we are working on World History. I am super excited to have the chance to review the CHSH Download Club. Within this I found a World History Course. This course covers everything from Ancient Egypt all the way up to the 1800s. Moe Man loves history and I look forward to seeing what he thinks about this and how well this works. Keep an eye out for our full review!

Language Arts

This year we are going to finish up The Power in Your Hands from Sharon Watson. We love this one. Moe Man has been actually writing and I love this. We look forward to finishing this up and seeing where it takes us! When it comes to the literature for 10th grade, we are going to be aiming for 2 books a month. We are going to pick our books from the wonderful list provided from Starts at Eight. I love this list and love that it covers the time era we will be covering in History.

Physical Education

Moe Man has been taking Martial Arts. He did not want to do this, but finally gave it a try and loves it. All three of the older kids participate twice a week and I love being able to see them advance in their skills. We will be counting this as our gym class and adding in a few lessons on healthy nutrition as well.


Being in 10th Grade, Moe Man gets the chance to pick out electives. This year we are going to start Spanish. Moe Man really wants to learn Spanish. I was super happy to find a Spanish program over at the download club at CHSH. This looks like a good starter program that I can supplement with our Foreign Languages for Kids by Kids that we reviewed the other week. This is a little simple for Moe Man, so I am glad to find something to go with that.

That is our year in a nutshell. Now, remember, we homeschool. This is what we plan to do, but I am certain that something is going to change. Something won't work and we will find something better. We will get the chance to review something and like it better than what we already have.

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