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Dave Raymond’s American History ~ A Schoolhouse Crew Review

Roman Roads

 

Do you have a history loving child? How about a visual learner? Do you need a history course for high school? If you answered yes to any of these than you need to check out Dave Raymond’s American History by Roman Roads Media.

What Is It

Dave Raymond’s American History is a set of 8 DVDs with 26 Lessons, a Student Reader, and Teacher’s Guide. With the full American History set, you have a full 1 High School History Credit and nothing more is needed to complete a full year of American History with a Christian Worldview added in.

The Student Reader and Teacher’s Guide can be printed in PDF format, or viewed digitally via mobi and ePub formats. The DVDs work on my media player on the computer or in our BluRay/DVD player with no problems on either one.

Although no other major supplies are needed for the curriculum itself, you do have a portfolio project where you will want to invest in a three ring binder with page protectors or a sketch book with durable pages. And your art supplies as well. There are other projects and assignments throughout the course as well that will have you use the internet or your library for research.

How Did We Use American History

Dave Raymond has taken a subject and brought it to life for my son. Each of the 26 lessons is split into 5 sub-sections, making each lesson last about a week. The daily lectures average about 10 minutes per day.

We would sit down and read the Student Reader to start the lesson off. We would then have an idea of what we would be learning and know what to look for to answer the question asked in the student reader. I would help Moe Man take notes during the lecture and then we would go over the question to make sure he understood the main concept. After taking notes we would either take our favorite part of the lesson or the question (depending on how in depth it was) and make a notebooking page to add into our yearly portfolio.

Right now, we are in the middle of our fun map project. So after finishing the lecture and notebooking page, we will add a little more to our map. Although we are notebooking, you are able to decide whatever you want to do for your portfolio page. If your child likes notes, go for it. If they love to draw, let them draw. The portfolio is their way of sharing and remembering what they are learning.

Since Dave Raymond’s American History is for grades 6 all the way up to high school, I am picking and choosing some of the questions and projects that seem too intense for Moe Man at this time and skipping them. We have not missed out on anything from doing this, and Moe Man still loves the program.

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Our Opinion

We have found our American History Course for the year! And I have a feeling we will reuse it again when Moe Man is older and do some of the items we are skipping this time around. When I asked Moe Man what he like about the program he said all of it. He loves having the video lectures to help him understand the reading, and he loves that there are projects to work on while doing the lessons. I love that everything is planned out for me. I will add some things and omit some, but that is homeschooling at its finest. I haven’t actually taken anything out yet, but I know there may be something…

Moe Man did not like the weekly tests or questions. But he doesn’t like tests or questions period. I did notice some were too advanced for him, but we tried our best and worked on them together. Other than that, we didn’t find anything to complain about.

For a full year of High School American History, the price of $75 per semester ($150 for the full year) seems kinda steep. However, after a week using the program, I would change my mind and say it is worth it. You have someone who is taking their time to record the lectures for your kids and actually speak to them in the lectures. Than you add in the fact that you have the lessons and projects planned out for you and you have the teacher guide and student reader…the price is truly worth it!

Please share the love with Roman Roads Media by stopping by their Facebook page, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+ and YouTube. Tell them I sent you!

Roman Roads Media not only sells Dave Raymond’s American History, they sell many other quality products as well. Stop by these other reviews and see what they are!


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3P Learning Mathletics Review ~ A Schoolhouse Crew Review

Mathletics Review

 

Do you have fun with your math lessons? Do you like to have some online math practice for your child(ren)?  3P Learning has just the thing for you! They have this fun online math program called Mathletics.

3P Learning is known for their online Reading Eggs program and now they have added to that collection with Mathletics for the math fun!

What It Is

Mathletics is an online math program for grades K-12. There are 10 levels of learning available starting with simple 1-10 adding and going all the way up to logarithms and algebra. There are lessons and games that work on building your math skills and improving them. As the teacher (with the teacher account), you are able to pick and choose the level you want your child to be at. This program is CCSS aligned, which we didn’t care for, but worked around it. As a part of the program, you are able to access the printable workbooks. These range from basic shapes to Trigonometry! Mathletics is used by students worldwide in homeschools and classrooms.

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How We Used Mathletics

We have math programs that we are using, but the boys had fun doing “games” instead! As we went about our days, we would pull Mathletics up when the kids needed a break from “regular” school work. The boys would be busy playing the games and slowly advancing to the next level. I would work with Ray Ray on the topics he didn’t understand by using the printable workbooks. He enjoyed this way of learning math and I loved knowing that he was understanding what he was learning.

Both of the boys would compete against each other and themselves to see who could get the most points from day to day. I will get emails from Mathletics once a week letting me know how each child is doing. How much they are doing and how well they are succeeding in their studies, or what they need to work on more.

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Once getting everything set up, it was very easy use. Simply remembering your username and password is the hardest part (that is where a nice notebook with all those comes in handy). We had an issue of slow internet when we first started using this. It made it difficult to load some pages, but once we fixed our problem, we have been speeding through the pages.

Our Opinion on Mathletics

Moe Man is not a math boy. He never has been, but I was able to get some interest out of him with this program. I feel that because it was not a textbook or anything resembling school, he gave it a better chance. Moe Man may be in the 8th grade, but I had him working on 6th grade math with this and he was still challenged. Ray Ray loves anything that allows him to get on the computer. He went into this and was happy instantly. He was a tad upset when he couldn’t go as fast as he wanted. Like I said earlier, once we fixed our problem, he was a happy camper again.

For $59 per child per year, I find the total adding up a little too much for me. But we did not use this as a full curriculum like you are able to. If we would have done that, I could see justifying the cost since a full curriculum usually costs that or more. If using this as a supplement like we did, the cost doesn’t make sense.

Would I recommend this to others? Only if you are first, ok with Common Core, and second if you are going to be using this as a full curriculum or have extra money in your budget for this.

I am not the only reviewer who tried out this program. Head on over and see how everyone else felt about Mathletics.


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Hewitt Homeschooling ~ A Schoolhouse Crew Review

hewitthomeschooling

 

Do you like Unit Studies? Do you plan your own, or use premade ones? Have you always wanted to plan your own, but weren’t quite sure how to do it? Hewitt Homeschooling has this really nice resource available to us teachers called The Joy of Discovery and Learning Objectives for Grades K-8. This combined package not only includes a guide for unit studies, but also the learning objectives for Kindergarten through 8th grade.

What is it?

The Joy of Discovery and Learning Objectives is a nice combination of two wonderful resources, a guide for unit studies and a list of learning objectives for grades K-8. The Joy of Discovery comes printed in a durable three ring binder and the Learning Objectives is also combined at the back of the binder. You also get the supplies needed to make a Dial-A-Unit spinner. This is a fun addition to making sure your student doesn’t always choose the easiest way around a unit study. With The Joy of Discovery, you would be able to plan a whole curriculum for your child based off of what they love to learn about. You are able to get all of this for only $21 at Hewitt Homeschooling.

How We Used This

This was a fun “mommy” review item…little did the kids know, they would still be a part of it! I have always wanted to do unit studies, but those prepackaged ones just never seemed to fit our needs. I was able to talk with the boys, and find something that they were interested in and went to work following the steps of planning out my first unit study!

You don’t just pick a topic and go though. This program is set up so that you learn about the I3 theory (Individual, Inquiry and Instruction). With this knowledge, you will then be able to plan a unique unit study for each of your children. With the Dial-A-Unit included with this program, you are able to use your topic and what you want to know to find a thinking skill to use and a project idea. This makes each unit study different! Moe Man had fun spinning the Dial-A-Unit, and I had fun not needing to worry about all the small details myself.

After Moe Man would decide on his topic, I would than go through the steps of making sure learning objectives were touched upon during our study. The steps on how to do this are included in the planning stages. Having the list of learning objectives listed right behind the unit study pages is very helpful when it comes to this!

They have thought of everything within this study planner. Even the question and answer section and my favorite Reproducible Forms and Charts…Being able to copy a form for planning the Unit Study and the Evaluation was wonderful and made it easy to use this program multiple times.

I used the learning objectives to first make sure the kids were where they needed to be and then to work on making sure we stayed on track while planning the beginning of our year.

What Did We Think?

I loved this whole set up! I was able to take what my kids were interested in and let them have fun while learning about that topic! I also really enjoyed the learning topics, and love that they were included in the binder. While planning a unit study, they came in handier than I thought. If I would have bought just The Joy of Discovery, I don’t think I would have looked into the Learning Objectives, but getting them together showed me how much they need to be used together. If you are a Unit Study family, I highly recommend this! If you have ever thought about Unit Studies, I highly recommend this before a prepackaged one. The only thing I would change about this whole package is a picture of the Dial-A-Unit in use…the directions are there, but I was a tad confused the first time. Once I figured it out though, it was really simple!

Hewitt Homeschooling sells more than just The Joy of Discovery. Head on over and check out some of these other reviews on other products!


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Analytical Grammar ~ A Schoolhouse Crew Review

BTBR

 

Book Reports…we have never had a successful book report in our homeschool…Well, never until now! Analytical Grammar has this fun program called Beyond the Book Report. Aimed towards the middle school crowd (6th-8th graders), this was perfect for me to use with Moe Man!

What Is It?

Beyond the Book Report is a language arts program and is made to pair well with Analytical Grammar. We did not use this with Analytical Grammar, but just added it to what we were already doing. This worked for us. There are three seasons to Beyond the Book Report, each with their own DVD and teacher guide. The teacher guide provides a day to day schedule and samples for the different types of reports. The DVD not only has a “lecture” slide to go along with the reports, but it also includes the pages  you need for your child/ren to use to go with the lesson. Each season sells for $24.95 and you make them last for as long or as short as you want. This is done by how long you want to take to read the different stories. Speaking of which…there are no book lists with this program. You find what you want your children to read or what they want to read and go with it.

Season One has three different types of reports, the Basic Report, the Pamphlet Report and the Journalism Report. Season Two goes into Poetry and Drama, while Season Three talks about Essays, Orals Reports and Research Papers. There are rubrics to go with each lesson and these are a wonderful addition for our house (and for me). Not only do we learn about the different types of book reports, but each one teaches different concepts as well.

How Did We Use This?

Moe Man has never been one who would sit down and write a book report. I have to pry information out of him just to know what he read in the last chapter. We started with the basic book report and I feel in love the minute I found out that I didn’t have to teach anything to Moe Man, I just had to sit back and watch with him. We took three days to go over the lectures and take our notes. After making sure he understood what he had to do, I let Moe Man get started on his book. I let him pick his book and we figured out how many pages per day he would have to read to be done by the due date. I printed a copy of the rubric that I would be using so that Moe Man could see what he needed to do to complete his assignment. After he finished reading, we took the time to work on writing the book report together (Moe Man doesn’t write), with him telling me what needed to be written and then writing it after verbally speaking it. He was impressed with his first real book report, and I was impressed with him for actually doing this and doing it well!

After doing the basic book report, we skipped ahead to Season Two (not recommended, but we wanted to try it out right away). I decided to check out the Poetry Book Report since I want to work with all the kids on poetry. I thought this would be a good way to introduce it to Moe Man first. We had a slightly harder time with this unit, but still had a lot of fun with it. We were able to learn about the different types of poems and all the fun words that go along with them! There was a nice final test at the end of this quick study and we were able to see how much Moe Man actually retained.

We are looking forward to moving on to our next section. We haven’t decided if we are going to skip ahead again to Session Three or go back to Session One…They are all so much fun, we have to see what we decide!

What Did We Think?

I was a tad bit hesitant at first with this program. I didn’t know what Moe Man would think, and I didn’t want a daily battle. I did, however, want him to learn how to write a book report and learn to appreciate literature better. This turned out to be the right program for us. We fell in love after the basic book report, and that is the best thing. Once Moe Man gets that feeling of accomplishment, he tries harder at the next part. He felt that after the basic book report and worked hard at the poetry, which made me happy. As much as I loved this program, Moe Man still just considers it a part of school and wasn’t extra thrilled with it. I loved having the schedule laid out for me and the teaching done for me. I actually learned a few things along with Moe Man!

I would recommend this program to anyone with middle school children who need to work on their book reports. We did enjoy it, and plan to continue it as a part of Moe Man’s year of school!

I am hoping over to check out these others reviews from these other ladies since Analytical Grammar has many more products available! I hope you will join me and see what everyone thinks of these wonderful products!


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Flourish: Balance for the Homeschool Mom ~ A Schoolhouse Crew Review

Flourish

 

Are you a busy stay at home, homeschool mom? Do you work from home too? Do you find yourself too exhausted at the end of the day to care for yourself? Apologia Educational Ministries has a book just for you mommas! Flourish: Balance for Homeschool Moms was written by Mary Jo Tate just for us moms who need some extra help and support!

What It Is:

This physical softcover book is 280+ pages of advice to help you “flourish” as a mom, wife and homemaker and work from home mom. There are 16 chapters and two appendixes. The Chapters are:

 An Invitation to Flourish

Change Your Mind to Change Your Time

The FREEDOM Toolbox

Where Did My Time Go?

Aim High: Setting Goals

What Do I Do Next? Seven Essential Planning Tools

We Interrupt This Program

It’s Time for an Attitude Adjustment

Oxygen Masks and Monkey Bread Days

Training Your Children

Making Memories

Managing Your Home

All of Life is Learning

Solo Act: Flourishing as a Single Mom

Home Business

Moving Ahead

The Appendixes have the Recommended Resources and Planning Forms in them. This is not a homeschool curriculum, and is best recommended for the ages of Mom 🙂

Price:

The price of the softcover Flourish is $15.00 at the time of my publishing this post.

The Use of Flourish by me:

I dove into reading Flourish right away! I took everything to heart and actually used this as a study for me. I made myself do the exercises provided at the end of every chapter as though it were my homework. The exercises, listed as Take Action, are simple. Something like filling out your monthly calendar, experiment with new cooking skills or even remember why you decided to homeschool does not take all day or require you to struggle to get it done. I have to tell you that the first chapter (sample here), really touched close to home. I felt as though Mary Jo Tate was speaking right at me. This made it easier to continue reading the book.

I would sit down after the kids were in bed or while they were busy playing outside. Whenever I had a “mommy” moment I would grab my book of Flourish so that I could learn to “flourish”. This is a simple, read and do as it says type of book. There are no “go and buy this to make this work” items listed. Mary Jo Tate does give you a list of books that you can read and learn from as she did, but she does a wonderful job of teaching you herself!

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My Opinion:

I honestly loved how simple this book was to read. It was to the point and included beautiful examples and quotes that were on the same topic as the page they were listed on. I received this book when I needed it the most and loved how simple it was to implement the ideas that were given.

I don’t have a true home based business, but I do have this blog. So I used those ideas for this and it worked! But if you didn’t have a home business or blog, you can use these ideas for your work away from home, or however you feel fit when you get to that section. I am not a single mom doing all of this at home, but I loved knowing some of the tips and especially the ways that I could encourage those single moms that I know.

My favorite chapter in the book was the one on Training Your Children. Oh, the ideas given!! I am in love with the different sample chore charts that don’t require me to purchase any additional items to make! How simple and easy to use, yet allowing me that much more freedom to do something else, while the kids learn responsibility for themselves and how to care for a house as well.

From the beautiful cover and name to wonderful content, I give this book an A++. I really did enjoy it and feel that many of you will enjoy and benefit like I did. Don’t believe me? Well check out these other reviews by clicking below!

 



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WriteShop Junior ~ A Schoolhouse Crew Review

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Do you have a child who hates to write? Someone who wants nothing to do with anything that has to do with writing? Well, that was Moe Man. Notice the word “was”. We tried out a new product from WriteShop. We used the WriteShop Junior: Book E Set.

WriteShop Junior: Book E Set is recommended for 4th and 5th graders, but can also be used for 6th and 7th graders who haven’t had the best of writing practice before. We used the Print Teacher Guide ($45.95), Junior Activity Guide (Print $45.95), Junior Writer’s Notebook PDF ($3.50) and the Junior Time Saver Pack in Print ($14.95). The Time Saver Pack and the Writer’s Notebook are optional items, but they make it that much more fun to use!

I think I may have been more excited than Moe Man to get this item for review. Like I said, he didn’t like to write. Reading? Yeah he loves it, but to try and write it out? Not for him. We decided to use this program a minimum of 3 days a week, while using it up to 5 days a week with no problems. There are 10 sections to this Level of the WriteShop Junior program. These sections include: Fables, Humor, Adventure, Science Fiction, Mystery, Poetry/Shape Poems, Personal Narrative, Descriptive Narrative, Book Report/Responding to Literature and Expository Writing: Nonfiction Report. Using a three day a week plan, it would take 3 weeks to finish each lesson, stretching this program to last 30 weeks.

Now those are fun topics to learn about, but you get to practice writing within these topics in a non-scary way. Working on Journal prompts and playing games help even the most reluctant writer open up and try. Moe Man had fun telling me what to write instead of doing it himself. It was so fun for me to see that he loved narrating a story instead of writing it down.

Moe Man is a hands on learner. If he can make something, he has more fun with it. WriteShop has the Fold-N-Go Grammar Pack helps him with this. Cutting and gluing, while still filling out answers to the questions make it easy for him to remember what he learned. It is also very helpful for us to pull out the file folders with the sections that he needs review on instead of trying to find the section in a book someplace.

Each lesson is broken down into different sections. These remain ultimately the same throughout each lesson. They may be slightly different, but the idea is there. Out of all the sections, Moe Man loved the Model and Teach section. This is where he could watch me as I struggled to think of different ideas. Or even just watching me think about what I had to write and use my eraser to fix my mistakes. This made him open up more and realize he is not the only one who has a hard time with all of the steps of writing.  

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While learning of the different styles of writing, WriteShop has a wonderful book list of books that go with that style of writing. It is so fun to read these different styles while we are learning about them.

You know, I have heard a lot of good about WriteShop and was excited to try them. I was surprised by how good they really were! How well they fit for Moe Man. To take a child who despised writing and make him into a child who will actually try now…to me, that is HUGE! Whether or not your child struggles with writing or not, I would recommend checking out WriteShop and all they have to offer! We love this level and I am sure there is a level that would work for you!

Stop by and check out WriteShop on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram and Google+. Tell them I sent you! Also, stop by the other 50+ reviewers and find the level that works for you!

 

 


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Moving Beyond the Page ~ A Schoolhouse Crew Review

MBTP

What fun is school when it is all just read this and do that? What if you could move beyond the page and take what you learn to a whole new level? Moving Beyond the Page has just the material for you! We have been honored to have been able to review The Hobbit/Online language study and the Science Package – Force and Motion.

Moving Beyond the Page offers both physical and online products. You are able to get a full curriculum, or pick and choose what you need. We were able to try both of these out with our review.

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 The Hobbit was an online language study. For $21.92 you get a physical copy of the book and access to the online language study. This study is for ages 11-13 and the students should be able to read and comprehend 7th to 8th grade level novels. When using the online program, you are able to turn on the teacher answers, or leave them off for your students.

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I like to use the answers while verbally asking Moe Man the questions. I find he responds better to that than reading and writing the answers down. Not only does this include comprehension questions, but also things to know (grammar skills) and ideas to think about while reading the book. They also have activities for the different lessons. These include some grammar activities, map skills, vocabulary and foreshadowing to name a few.

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Each lesson ends with a conclusion. A way to finish up the chapter. Questions to discuss with your child or things they need to review. If you have a computer and internet access, you are able to enjoy using this online study with your child.

The Science Package – Force and Motion, came to us as a full physical package. Once again, the teacher manual is included in the teacher book.

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I love the saving of paper that is used with this. There isn’t a use for repeating what the student should be doing to both the student and the teacher. The answers are at the back of the book, and unless you point this out to the student, they won’t know about it. The student “text” book is a fun little story book type book. A few simple pages a day along with activities and experiments to help reinforce what they are reading makes this “move beyond the page”. For $50.07, you get these two books and the supplies needed for the activities and experiments that are listed. This program is for ages 10-12 and/or those who are able to read and comprehend at a 6th and 7th grade level.

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Although these ranges where high for Ray Ray…he loved to be a part of the hands on with this science program. He may not have learned the vocabulary like Moe Man, but he is building his base.

We used both of these at least 4 times each week. Moe Man and I would work together on The Hobbit, partly because I wanted to read the story again, and partly to help him with the wording of the book. But when it came to the science, he was able to handle that on his own. He was able to read through the “check off list” in the book and know what had to be done next. He loved the setup of the book and the simplicity of it. And that made me like it that much more!

My final opinion of these items is A+. I honestly couldn’t be any happier with them. They were set up nicely and were very easy to use. Even the online products! I have always had at least one issue with an online program, but not this one! We loved the hands on that came with both of these and the science experiments were simple, yet engaging for the kids. I would truly recommend this program to anyone who likes hands on and fun learning without a lot of prep from mom (or dad)!

Moving Beyond the Page has a Facebook page. Stop by and tell them that I sent you!

There are so many fun and interesting units provided by Moving Beyond the Page. I would never be able to review them all no matter how much I may want to! Check out these other ladies and what they were able to try out and what they thought!

 


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Veritas Press ~ A Schoolhouse Crew Review

veritas press

Have you heard of Veritas Press? They have lots of fun curriculum and especially one called Veritas Press Self-Paced Omnibus I. Moe Man had the opportunity to review this program.

Veritas Press Self-Paced Omnibus I is an “all encompassing” course that includes history, theology and literature for ages 12 and up (grade seventh through ninth). All the material in this course are taught using a biblical, Christian worldview.  Students are brought to the place where the history happened through the use of the online videos. Not only do they learn through the visiting of the places, but they are quizzed on what they learn as well.

Everything for the course is included with the online program. There is no need for planning on my part. I send him to the site and let him go. There isn’t even a lot of reading…more listening and watching videos than anything, which Moe Man really enjoyed. There are some readings that are the “homework”, and most come from the bible. Those assignments that are not from the bible are able to be accessed through the eBook or via the course itself. Once you purchase this course, you won’t need to purchase anything else. There are no special requirements, other than high speed internet that is needed for the course.

The cost of a year’s access to the course is $295. To enroll a second child in the same course, you get $100 off the cost.

Once you are enrolled, you the parent get a teacher page, while your child gets their own student log in page. They are able to see the different assignments before they start each day.

I let Moe Man go with this program. He enjoyed having the freedom of not having me hover over him while he worked on his school. But I was able to make sure he was understanding it all by checking in via my page.

At least three days each week, sometimes four, Moe Man would sit down and watch the videos for each lesson. After watching the videos for the lesson, we would work the worksheets or quizzes together. As much fun as Moe Man had doing this on his own, I noticed the worksheets and quizzes were hard on him. If I was able to work through them with him, he did much better than doing them on his own. I feel this is because of his learning style and not because of the program itself.

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Through the use of Omnibus I, we have been able to work through Genesis, Exodus, Gilgamesh, and are now working on Hammurabi. This course took the place of our history for the time being. We found that it was perfect to help us learn more about ancient history as well as the history of the bible.

Moe Man really enjoyed using this program and I feel that he will continue using this without me asking him to! This is big for him when it comes to school. Not only does he love history, but to have it presented in such a fun and easy to understand way makes it that much more fun for him. The actual videos were very well presented and made it easy for anyone to follow along. Like I said, the worksheets and quizzes were hard for Moe Man, but that is him and not the program. Overall, this program was a wonderful program!

Veritas Press can be found on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Google+. Make sure you stop by and say hi!

Not only does Veritas Press offer their Self-Paced Omnibus I course, they have many more. Stop by these bloggers and see what they have to say about the different programs!

 


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Go Science DVDs ~ A Schoolhouse Crew Review

Goscience

How much fun do you have with science experiments? We love to learn from them, but mommy doesn’t love to plan, supply and clean up after them. Plus, some of the supplies seem really hard to find or are spendy for a one time use. What if you could watch a science experiment done by someone who is enthusiastic and aims the attention to the kids? No clean up went still learning? I love that option!

Library and Educational Services has Series 2 of the Go Science DVDs available and these videos are a life saver for this mommy!

Ben Roy is the host of these “game show” like video experiments. He is having fun with science and a whole group of kids from every background, which we loved! Ben Roy has done science lessons for different TV channels and websites. He is a very enthusiastic host who captures the attention of all kids…no matter the age or interest in science.

These DVDS are not a full science curriculum, but they are the perfect add on to the different units you may be studying at the time. These are DVDs and we played them just fine on our BluRay player. Each DVD runs for just over an hour and is recommended for ages 4-12 (we had ages 3, 5, 9, 11 and 13 watching with enjoyment from all). Library and Educational Services sells these DVDs for only $8.97 each.

During the summer months I don’t like to do “too” much school…we get busy and heck, it is summer! But when we were given the chance to review the Go Science DVDs I was excited, you know it isn’t always beautiful play outside weather during the summer! We sat down together and picked out our two DVDs and patiently waited for Volume Two: Life Science, Weather and Volume Five: States of Matter, Water to arrive. We didn’t have to wait too long with the fast shipping though!

Right away we hit a hot spell. An icky, sticky, don’t want to move hot spell. We popped in a DVD and we were having fun guessing what would happen and then actually watching it happen. Our DVD choices were based off things we have previously learned about with our science lessons.

The first DVD we watched was States of Matter, Water. The different episodes on this DVD were: Ice Cream, Oobleck, Density Column, Ice Block Melt, Run Through Corn Starch and Water, Pitcher of Cold Water Put in Hot Water, Putting Ice in Water Float or Sink, Making Butter, Traveling Water, Antimagnetic Water, Pouring Water and Burning Water.

The second DVD was Life Science, Weather. The fun episodes on this DVD are Flashlight-Animal Eyes, Animal Skulls, Bobby Pins, What are you Looking At?, How Much Do Your Lungs Hold?, Eating Nails for Breakfast, Naked Eggs, Fire Tornado, Ping Pong Cannon, Liquid Nitrogen Cloud, Cloud in a Bottle and Garbage Can Vortex.

What is my favorite part of the DVDs, when Ben Roy is able to teach a lesson and pull God into it at the end…sometimes it is a simple “When we learn more about science we learn more about God” and other times it goes into a full lesson, (Making sure we are “in tune” to God’s voice).

What do my kids love? Seeing the fun experiments and knowing that mom doesn’t have to be in control of them! Their favorite was the Ping Pong Cannon. Who would have thought that a simple ping pong ball could do so much damage from a simple vacuum suction?

We loved these DVDs and still love them! We just put them in today and right away Ray Ray was saying “Hush, I am busy watching this one!” I love hearing this from my kids, especially when it comes from something like science videos!

If you love watching your kids learn from science experiments, yet you don’t like the clean up or prep time involved, these DVDs will be your best friends!

Series 2 of the Go Science DVDs has 7 titles in the collection. I didn’t get the chance to review all of them, so make sure to stop by and see what the other reviews are all about!

 


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We Choose Virtues ~ A Schoolhouse Crew Review

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How are your virtues? How are your kid’s virtues? Do they need some work? Maybe something fun and easy to use? I have the program for you! We Choose Virtues has these wonderful Parenting Cards available for home and homeschool use.

The Parenting Cards are 13 double sided cards printed on heavy duty cardstock. There is no “schedule” on how to teach these virtues. You use them as you need them in your house. The cards are full color and include all you need to know to teach these virtues to your family. Yes, there are additional items that you can add to this program…but these cards work well as a stand-alone program as well.

Along with the Parenting Cards ($38.49), we received the Download Bundle ($7.99) to use in this review. The Download Bundle included the Teacher’s Handbook, Family Character Assessment, Coloring Pages, Butterfly Award and Sing-Along-Song Sheet.  None of these make or break the program like the Parenting Cards though.

This program is recommended for ages 3-11. It worked perfect for us and our ages. I started out by reading through the teacher’s handbook so I could understand what I was about to be teaching the kids. I did find a lot of good tips in there, such as modeling the virtue I wanted to teach, but I found so much more on the Parenting Cards themselves. The front of each card it colorful and bright. They have a character for each virtue and the virtue itself. Under that virtue there is a short example of what it means to be that virtue (Helpful – I find things that need to be done and I do them.). Than they list what that virtue is not. Once again it is written simply and very understandable for all ages. Finally, we end the front with a Bible verse on that virtue.


We Choose Virtues Review

 

The back of the Parenting Cards are the “Teacher’s Handbook” on a card in my opinion. Here is where all the learning and teaching is listed. We loved the User Challenge…since it is fun to compete against each other in a healthy way. Another favorite part was the What to Say After “I’m sorry”. We had been looking for a way to make sure our kids knew what they were saying when they apologized, and this seemed to work perfect. There is also the Teachable Moments. Listed here are numerous different things that you can do as a family to put this virtue into action in your house. And of course, you can’t forget the Virtue Character. A short little couple sentence long story about the character of each card to help put the virtue into everyday life.


We Choose Virtues Review

We used these cards every day in some way or another. I would start by introducing the virtue to the kids and we would spend some time going over the card together. This didn’t take more than 10 minutes at a time and this was the actual introducing of the new virtue. Once we had introduced the virtue, it went up on the wall and we would refer back to it as needed. I could simply ask, “Are you being helpful, forgiving, self-controlled, etc.” and the kids, even Little Miss would know what I was talking about. If for some reason they were to forget what the virtue was, we could easily review it from the front of the card.

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I loved having these cards in the house. I loved being able to quickly refer to the behavior I wanted instead of the one I didn’t want. Positive is so much more fun than negative! If you are looking for a virtue program for your family, I recommend this program. It fits many ages and is simple enough for any family to use, yet effective at the same time! Don’t believe me? Check out these other reviews!


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