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Dot-To-Dot Philadelphia – A Timberdoodle Review

This is a review post. I received this item in exchange for my honest review. Below you will find just that, my honest review.

Some days we just don’t want to do school. On those days, all we want is a break, but mom still wants learning to happen as much as possible. This is doable when we pull out some fun Dot-to-Dot books to work on. These last two weeks, Ray Ray and I have been working on We Are Connected Dot-to-Dot Philadelphia. This book is also available as part of Timberdoodle’s 11th Grade Curriculum Kit.

There are 23 puzzles covering 30 pages in this book that guide us around the Parkway Museums District in Philadelphia. Yes, I said 23 puzzles and 30 pages. There are some puzzles that span 2 pages! We love a good challenge, and this book sure provided that for us in a fun way!

This is not a book to hand to a beginner, with the smallest puzzle going all the way up to 152 and the largest going to 1690! But this is a great book for those who love to spend some time away from the screens and create something fun by drawing a few lines. This is recommended for ages 8 and up and while Ray Ray does enjoy dot-to-dots, this was one he had more fun looking at the pictures after I had done them.

Not only do we get to relax while doing these fun puzzles, but at the back of the book, we have a beautiful description of what each puzzle is when they are done. This allowed us the chance to check out the pictures in further detail and add some history to our fun.

Also, at the beginning of the book, we find a friendly welcome that introduces us to Philadelphia and the Parkway Museums District. Again, this was an excellent way to work in some other learning besides just doing a dot-to-dot.

I have really enjoyed sitting down and doing these dot-to-dots. I have found that using a ruler, as suggested, should be done if you want to make these look nicer. I also like using a super fine tip rolling ball pen vs. a pencil. The pages are thick enough that my pen did not bleed through like on regular paper. The results were enough to make me slow down and take my time with the pen. I was very impressed with the results!

If you are looking for a fun way for you or your child to relax and learn some fun history facts along the way, this dot-to-dot book from Timberdoodle is a great way to do just that!

 

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Dr. Bonyfide Presents Bones – A Review

Learning Bones with Dr Bonyfide

This is a review post. I received this item in exchange for my honest review. Below you will find just that, my honest review.

Learning about the skeletal system should be fun. There should be games and activities that keep a child interested. Keeping them interested is the hardest part. The Dr. Bonyfide Presents Bones – Set of 4 was just what we needed in our home!

Learning Bones with Dr Bonyfide

What Is It?

This is a four-book set, each one focusing on different bones within the body. Each of these books can be used for a whole year, making this set start in 3rd grade and finish in the 6th grade.

The four books are:

  1. Dr. Bonyfide Presents Bones of the Hand, Arm, and Shoulder
  2. Dr. Bonyfide Presents Bones of the Foot, Let and Pelvis
  3. Dr. Bonyfide Presents Bones of the Rib Cage and Spine
  4. Dr. Bonyfide Presents Bones of the Head, Face, and Neck

Learning Bones with Dr Bonyfide

Each book consists of short, fun, and rhyming lessons. The books are full of activities for the kids to get hands on fun practice with what they have been learning. These activities can range from checking out “x-rays” with 3D glasses to drawing the bones as you trace your hands and feet or even just coloring the ribs while you practice their names.

On top of all the fun that filled the pages, these pages were full color. They are made of a thicker weight paper, so they can stand up to lots of flipping of pages.

How We Used It

Ray Ray was the intended reader of these books. However, he decided to take his learning of his bones a step farther. Two days after we opened the books, Ray Ray fell off his bed and broke his elbow! *Just a heads up, this did not earn him any extra credit, and it is not required when you decide to purchase the books!

Learning Bones with Dr Bonyfide

I did not have any lesson plans to follow when we got these books. Instead, we took the books and had fun with them on our own. I would simply write Dr. Bonyfinde on Ray Ray’s daily lessons and he would read as much or as little as he wanted. Typically, he would read the lesson and stop. The next day he would go and do the activities that went with the lesson.

We used this in addition to our current Science curriculum. The way this played out on our lesson plans was 2-3 times a week using it, depending on the week. This was a perfect spacing option for us.

What We Thought Of It

We love using these books. Ray Ray enjoys that the lessons were short and to the point, yet fun at the same time. He doesn’t get bored and jumps at the chance to do Dr. Bonyfide instead of his current curriculum.

I did notice that when Ray Ray uses a pen or pencil, the color on the back of the pages he writes on transfers to the following pages. While this frustrated us a little, we did find that using a permanent marker helped prevent the transfer and the pages were thick enough to prevent it from bleeding through.

Learning our Bones with Dr Bonyfide

I love that he loves to learn about his body. This is such a fun curriculum that I don’t have to argue with him to work on it. I think we will end up going through more than one book each year, as Ray Ray loves to read them that much.

If you are looking for a fun way to get your child interested in learning about their skeletal system, Dr. Bonyfide is the guy for you!

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Draw and Learn Faces – A Review

Draw and Learn Faces

This is a review post. I received this item in exchange for my honest review. Below you will find just that, my honest review.

Kids need to learn how to draw. They need the fine motor skills that come with holding a pencil and making a certain shape. This is the first step towards making them writers. How can you do this in a fun yet structured way? You can find a fun resource like Draw and Learn Faces!

Draw and Learn Faces

What Is It?

Draw and Learn Faces is a My First Activity Book. It can be found in the Timberdoodle Preschool Curriculum Kit. The pages of this book are full of colored pictures that are half way drawn, leaving pieces for kids to complete the rest.

There are no lesson plans, but like most books, you should use it from front to back. Your child will work on building upon the skills that have learned as they go through the book. The skills start with learning different eyes, nose and mouth shapes to draw, and from there they draw faces on many different objects.

Draw and Learn

While there are lots of guided pages of what to do, there are also some blank, free drawing pages to let the creative juices flow.

How Did We Use It?

I had Little Miss using this book. She loves to draw, but really fights me when it comes to handwriting. I figure I could build the skills for handwriting while still letting her enjoy the art of drawing. She loved drawing in the book and didn’t think it was too little for her at all.

I had no plans going into this. I wanted to get my hands on it and see what she thought of it before planning anything. Once I fell in love with it, I handed it over and she wanted to just draw non-stop. To make us both happy, we worked on a few pages each day.

There were no complicated instructions, so I was able to tell her what to do on each page and let her go. This also freed me up to help the big boys with their work for a few minutes.

Draw and Learn

What Did We Think Of It?

Little Miss didn’t want to stop drawing! She was thrilled to be able to have another drawing book, and this one was her favorite. She thought it was funny to draw faces on different pieces of fruit and objects such as plates or balloons. This helped to open her imagination when it comes to drawing.

The pages of the book are made of thicker paper, which prevents tearing. I love the amount of color on each page and the simple instructions. I also love that when working in the book, you can fold it flat on the table, this binding was awesome! It made for easier drawing.

Little Miss really enjoys this book, even though she is on the upper age range. Baby Girl is at the lower age of this book, was not quite ready for it. I see this being perfect for ages 4-6, unless your child is ready to draw at ages 2-3, then this would be a perfect starting point.

The Draw and Learn books also come in People, Animals and Places. We look forward to trying more of these fun books!

Have you ever tried the Draw and Learn series before? Which was your favorite?

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Tegu Oceans Deluxe Wooden Blocks – A Review

The kids in this house love to play with anything that includes building. Baby Girl got some great building blocks for Christmas, but she is upset when they topple over and I don’t like not knowing much about the product itself when she wants to put it in her mouth. Lucky for me, we had the chance to try Tegu Oceans Deluxe Magnetic Wooden Blocks from Timberdoodle, and we had a great time with them!

The Tegu Oceans Deluxe Magnetic Wooden Blocks are a part of Timberdoodle’s Preschool Curriculum kit, but these have been a hit for everyone in the house! And after I did my research, I am fine with anyone using these, even if they put them in their mouth!

The magnets in these wooden blocks are like magic. You can’t see them. There is no piecing together of the wood, no way to see where they took it apart to put in the magnet. This is a huge plus in my books when I give something to my child, who will put it in her mouth.

Each of these wooden blocks is handcrafted. They contain no lead, no plastic, they are non-toxic and are painted with a water based lacquer finish. These are some safe and fun toys that I am glad we have our hands on!

Baby Girl was the intended reviewer for this product, but when the big kids saw it, they were in heaven! They wanted to build the biggest and best things possible because these wooden blocks would not topple as easy. This showed me that these blocks would get a lot of love for a lot of years! Just because Timberdoodle has them in their preschool kit, don’t worry, they will grow with your child, heck even Daddy tried to get in on the fun!

There are multiple shapes and sizes to the blocks, and the colors were “ocean” colors per the name! We also had the chance to check out the Tegu Wheels and see what kinds of cars we could make. There was a lot of trial and error on this part, and most of it involved mom helping and forgetting to take pictures!

We have loved building with these blocks. There is an e-book with ideas, but we didn’t use it. The kids loved finding their own way to play with them. I loved this! This allowed the kids to use their own minds, figure out the best way to use the magnets and have fun!

With the amount of play these blocks got in our house, they held up to it very well! We were very impressed with the quality, as well as the safety of them. We loved the imagination that came from the kids and the lessons of magnetism that they learned the hands-on way! These blocks were a hit the first day we opened them, and continue to be the favorite go to toy in the house!

Have you gotten your hands on these fabulous blocks? What is your favorite thing about them?

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(A Review) My First Scissors

When it comes to scissors in this house, we allow everyone to use them, but the little ones need extra help. Finding just the right pair of scissors to teach with is hard to find. However, we found just what we needed with the My First Scissors. These are included in Timberdoodle's Preschool Curriculum Kit as well as the PreK Curriculum Kit.

My First Scissors Review

The My First Scissors are unlike any you have seen before. These scissors are spring loaded, and can be used with right or left handed children. They have rounded blades to make them just a little bit safer. As always, they are scissors and need to be used with supervision or else you end up with a child who has decided their hair needed to be cut.

Little Miss has tried several "safety scissors" all of which have led to frustration. When she seen the package of these scissors, she was ready to jump right in. They are "her" scissors and no one is allowed to touch them.

My First Scissors

When it comes to teaching how to use the scissors, it is nice to have a book that is made for cutting. Kumon has some great books, and we loved the More Let's Cut Paper! This book allowed us to put our new scissors to use. Little Miss would have used this whole book up in one day if I had allowed it.

My First Scissors

The My First Scissors were easy for Little Miss to hold. They fit perfect in her hands and allowed her to enjoy learning how to cut. Because they were easy to use, she actually enjoyed using them. There was no fight on how to hold them correctly, they just fit. Her hands did not get tired from holding them and she truly loved using scissors with the My First Scissors!

Have you checked out beginner scissors for your little hands? One hold of these and you will be hooked!


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(A Review) Teach Your Baby to Sign

We all love being able to communicate with our children, especially when they are younger. But how do you go about communicating with them, if they haven't developed their speech yet? We had the chance to check out Teach Your Baby to Sign which is part of Timberdoodle's Tiny Tots Curriculum Kit.

Teach Your Baby to Sign

The Teach Your Baby to Sign Deck includes 52 sturdy, heavy cardstock cards. Each one with a different word for you to teach your "baby". These words range from eat or drink to sorry or wash hands. With these words, your child will have the ability to communicate their most basic needs with you.

Teach Your Baby to Sign

We taught Ray Ray baby sign language when he was 1.5 years old. He had shown no interest in talking, and while I knew he didn't have any huge underlying problems, I wanted to still know what he wanted to say. After watching how fast he caught on, I was hooked. We slowed down our learning after he turned 2 and decided that it was ok to verbally speak, and he hasn't slowed down since!

When I noticed that Baby Girl was acting the same way as Ray Ray, I wanted to get her signing as he had done. I did not have these cards when we taught Ray Ray, and I really wish I had. These cards are able to withstand the baby holding them and that is key if you are going to be using something with a younger child. Not only that, but they show a picture of the word being signed on the front, and the back helps mom and dad in on some quick and easy tips.

Teach Your Baby to Sign

Also included is a quick easy start guide for mom and dad. This guide tells you a brief history of baby signing, the benefits and even the alphabet. Like it is mentioned in this, and as I have witnessed, signing does not delay speech, in fact, there are more benefits that will help your child as they grow older.

Teach Your Baby to Sign

If you have a baby, toddler or child on the way, this is a deck of cards that you will truly enjoy and enjoy with your child! I know we have!

 



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TENZI Dice Game and Card Deck ~ A Review

When it comes to practicing math, there are some things that are more fun than others. Does your kid jump for joy when you say it is time for flash cards? Lucky you! If you are like me, it is a struggle. What if you can tell your kids, "Hey, it's time to play TENZI!" and they come running? Yes, the TENZI Game is fun, and your kids will be learning as well! Add in the extra Card Deck and find 77 new ways to play TENZI!

Review of Tenzi Dice

What Is It

TENZI Game is simply 40 dice 10 of each of 4 colors. Each player will pick a color and take all of the dice that are that color. Once everyone is ready, you start rolling your dice until all 10 are the same number. After your first roll, you will pick your number, grabbing those out as you continue your rolls. First one to get all 10 of the same number yells TENZI and wins the game! Super simple, super fun and a great way to work the minds!

Tenzi Dice

Now, if you add in the TENZI Card Deck, you are adding 77 new ways to play this already fun game. You have three new variations to play. You have the regular TENZI games where speed is the key to winning. You have Pattern Games that require you to complete a nine-dice pattern and roll a 6 on the remaining die to win. And you have some non-speed games. The simple take your turn and let luck be on your side!

How Did We Use It

This was such a fun game to play. We used this as a way to work on numbers for Little Miss. While they say that this is recommended for ages 7-97, Little Miss at 5 years old loved this game. She called this her math class on the days that we used it, and it was! This fun (learning) game was played almost every day. Having the extra cards helped to keep it interesting and fun!

77 Ways to Play Tenzi

When it came to the card pack, we would grab a handful out of the pack, set them upside down and pick which one we were going to use without seeing it. This was a fun way to pick and everyone was fighting over who got to pick first. Once we had our card, we would play. You never knew what card you would get, and what version of the game you were about to play.

What We Thought

This game and the different versions made it even more enjoyable. We loved pulling out the dice and learning about math while we were having fun. Little Miss couldn't get enough of this game. She loved picking a new version to play and I would find her playing by herself from time to time. We enjoyed talking about numbers and using this game as a warm up to math lessons was a great start to the day!

Playing Tenzi

Everyone had fun with this game. We loved finding new ways to play it, Farmzi, Fivezi and the different patterns. If you are looking for a fun way to practice your math skills, this is a game you should have in your house. My kids are asking for it by name. They see the dice and know the name! Your kids should be the same way!!

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Daily 6-Trait Writing ~ A Review

Writing, it is something that is especially important, but yet hard to teach at the same time. Ray Ray loves to come up with stories, but taking the time to sit down and write them is a whole other feat. When we were given the chance to review Daily 6-Trait Writing, Grade 2 from Timberdoodle's 2nd Grade Curriculum Kit, we figured it wouldn't hurt to try it out.

Daily 6-Trait Writing, Grade 2

What Is It

Daily 6-Trait Writing, is a daily writing program that will work with your kids on a daily basis to build their writing skills using the 6-Traits. What are the 6-Traits of writing? They are; Ideas, Organization, Word Choice, Sentence Fluency, Voice, and Conventions. Each of the six units will take the time to teach each of these traits.

There are 25 weeks of 125 daily lessons. These lessons cover all the traits and work to make your child a better writer and only take about 15 minutes each day. Each week, you will first see the teacher pages. On these pages you will see the Trait Skill that is being worked on that week. You have the lesson plan to help you teach the lesson to your child. You have reduced pages of what your child will see along with sample answers.

Daily Writing Review

Days 1-3 will work on using models to analyze, revise or add to. This is a great way to introduce the new ideas to your child and make sure they understand them. Day 4 is a prewriting activity that will get your child ready for the writing activity on Day 5. These lessons are short and simple and work well with any language arts program that you may already be using.

How We Used It

We were able to use this program while still using our current language arts curriculum. I loved being able to use this before our regular lessons as a way to warm up. We would talk about the lesson and get started on it right away on Monday. Most of the time Ray Ray would be able to do his lesson on his own and I would just check it after he was done.

Daily Writing

What We Thought

This was a great workbook. While I don't agree that the traits will tell you whether or not your child is a strong writer, I do believe that these are needed to write well. Ray Ray loves how quick these writing lessons are. He does not care about writing, yet I have seen him grow as a writing with these short lessons. I loved that I didn't need to plan, it was an open and go book. This made it easy for a homeschool mom of 3 with a 4 running at our feet! Ray Ray was able to open this in the morning while I was busy with breakfast. This is an added bonus to me!

Ray Ray with Daily Writing

We loved adding this book into our daily homeschool schedule. It did not take up too much time and fit perfect into everything else we were already learning. I love finding things that add learning without stress and this book does just that!

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Easy Grammar Grade 9 ~ A Review

When you homeschool, you find yourself being a grammar nazi more than you would like to admit. Even correcting grammar on social media with the local sheriff's office. Yes, I did do that and yes, they responded. Now, making sure your children understand the same concepts so you don't look silly…well, that is another story! When you use Easy Grammar Ultimate Series Grade 9, a part of the Timberdoodle 9th Grade Curriculum Kit, you find an easier way to teach and enforce this subject.

Easy Grammar Review

What Is It

Easy Grammar Ultimate Series Grade 9, is 180 daily lessons that cover numerous different grammar topics each day. Each lesson contains five different topics; Capitalization, Punctuation, 2 different Parts of Speech, and Sentence Combining. Each day your child will work on building on what they know and adding new things in a simple way.

Easy Grammar is what they call a teaching text. Your child will be introduced to concepts, they will build upon these concepts and will review these concepts throughout the book. Easy Grammar is a mastery style of learning. These lessons should only take about 10 minutes or less, but when used at the beginning of every Language Arts lessons, you will see great results.

Easy Grammar Review

How We Used It

We did just as we wanted with this book. I would make sure that Moe Man did this before he did any other language arts lessons. Knowing that his mind was ready, made me more relaxed going into the more difficult lessons we needed to work on. There are some ideas on how to use the lessons, but you are the final deciding factor as to how you will actually teach it.

We would talk about new concepts before Moe Man worked on them. We would sit down together after to check answers and talk about what was wrong and why. Some days we would spend more time working a specific section, and the next day Moe Man could do it on his own. Any of the review sections, Moe Man would be able to work on without me, but we would always meet up before he moved on to make sure he was showing me that he could do it.

Answer Key
Answer Key
Answer Key[/caption]

What We Thought Of It

Slowing down to think about each part of grammar frustrates Moe Man. He just wants to go, go and go. Using Easy Grammar was a great way to ease him into learning about grammar and his writing. I loved how simple this was. There were no silly doodles or colors that would distract him. We simply had the lesson and that was it.

Each lesson was one page. I didn't have to explain anything to Moe Man about what needed to be done, other than was day he was on. While he may need some explaining of the actual lesson, he knew that each day he had to do one page. This made it easy for both of us. He knew exactly what had to be done and I could explain without an argument! If you have a teenage boy, or even a teenager in general, you know the benefits of that!

This was a grammar program that we loved. This is something we both enjoyed using and Moe Man has picked up some tips so far! I can't wait to finish this one and move on to the next one!

What do you use for your grammar lessons in high school? Have you tried Easy Grammar?

 

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Daily Geography ~ A Review

What can you learn in 15 minutes a day? Well, if you are using Evan Moore's Daily Geography, Grade 2 from Timberdoodle's 2nd Grade Curriculum Kit you can learn a lot in just 15 minutes a day!

Daily Geography

What It It

This is a simple workbook that includes 36 weekly lessons. Each of these lessons include a teacher resource page that will guide you in teaching the lesson to your children. There is an answer key that you can use to check the work after each day. The lessons also include geography vocabulary, a reproducible map, two questions to work on each day and a challenge question at the end of the week.

Daily Geography

Within the 6 units, we get to learn about The World in Spatial Terms, Places and Regions, Physical Systems, Human Systems, Environment and Society and The Uses of Geography. With these 6 units you are able to cover the National Geography Standards (whether or not you pay attention to these, you are able to cover them).

How We Used It

We used this with Ray Ray for his Geography lessons. I did not add anything extra at this point as I just wanted to introduce him to the topic. Every Monday we would get a new map to look at and new Vocabulary to learn about. After talking about the vocabulary and the map, we would start our first questions of the week. These questions were simple enough, yet they were effective at teaching the new topics.

Daily Geography Review

After introducing the map and the vocabulary to Ray Ray, I was able to let him have control of his week. He knew what needed to be done each day by looking at the simple layout of the questions. The questions were able to pull the child into looking at the maps without discouraging them by super tough questions. Even the challenge question at the end of the week was simple and fun.

What We Thought Of It

We loved this book. I am not one to worry about the standards, so I didn't pay attention to these minor details. I do know that I want Ray Ray to be able to read map, and this book helped with that. I loved how easy it was for me to teach this to Ray Ray and how simple this book was laid out. I did not like how the answers were right there on the page that was opposite of the map that Ray Ray had to use daily. While he knows not to cheat, the temptation was there, all the time. I had to fold the page in half to remove that temptation, or photocopy the map so that he didn't have to flip back and forth. I woluld have loved to see the answers on a different page, or at the back of the book.

Daily Geography

While using this book, we were able to learn a lot about geography and maps. This is something that we needed, and it worked for us! Ray Ray loved that it wasn't drawn out and overdone, and I loved that he didn't fight me the whole way. This is a book that we will continue to use for the rest of his 2nd grade year and I look forward to using the 3rd grade one next year!

Don't have a 2nd grader but still want to use this? That is fine! This Series is available for grades 1-6!

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