Elementary German {Homeschool Review Crew}

Elementary German

Homeschool Review Crew

One of the many many languages I have always wanted to learn is German.  I want my kids to learn several languages as well.  Recently through the Homeschool Review Crew we got access to an elementary German course from Middlebury Interactive Languages.  Their German Courses are available for grades 3-12.  We received online access to their Elementary German program for grades 3-5.  

 

Spanish, French, German or Chinese {Middlebury Interactive Languages}
 

While this course is for Grades 3-5, I find that my younger children can also learn from it.  We love to listen and practice this together as a family during our homeschool mornings.  Even my three year old is picking up short phrases and words.  It’s so fun to see the kids interacting and using German words during our days!

The program itself is fun and engaging.  It uses fun stories and videos to teach language.  It’s a bit of immersion since they tell a story fully in German to start the lessons.  But the stories are ones that everyone will know so you can get the gist and make your own inference as to what the words mean.

My thoughts

I love that at the beginning of the course you have access to a list of all the stories that are going to be used.  This list allowed me time to make sure that I had the English versions in our house.  I’m a bit of a nerd and love to add more literature into our homeschool day so I made sure that we were reading the same books in English and in German at the same time.   Fun for me and the kids!  

Also, when you go back to the section mentioned above, you can click on a button that allows you to see all of the German phrases they’ll show on the screens and the English next to it.  I LOVE this!!!  It’s printed and in a binder for my use with the kids.  This way I can write some of our phrases on a blackboard or whiteboard throughout the house for practice away from the computer.

 

Elementary German (Homeschool Review Crew)

 

Another fun feature I took advantage of was the list of vocabulary for all 15 units at the beginning.  I printed those guys off too!  I have a chalkboard sticker on my refrigerator door.  Yeap vocabulary words in German get written on there!  It also let me plan ahead.  If I knew say we’d be learning fruit words one week I can make sure I have the fruit in question in my refrigerator so we can eat an apple while we learn the word for apple.  I’m fun like that!!

About the Program

Lesson 1 is all about family.  We learn the names for brother, sister, cousin, etc all while listening to the German version of Rumpelstiltskin.  It’s such a cute and fun way to learn the words!  Be prepared for your kids to run around calling each other brother and sister in German.  It’ll happen.  Ask me how I know.  

We’re working through the program doing one unit per week currently.  Though there have been a few weeks we did two units because my kids really got the words learned quickly.  It’s self paced though.  All the lessons are available when you’re ready for them and you can go back and do them again if you need to.

I highly recommend using Middlebury Interactive Languages Elementary German program.  Again, while it says grades 3-4 I personally am using it with some kids who are in Kindergarten, first, and second as well as a few preschoolers in addition to those grades and they are doing really well learning the words.

Learn More

If you’d like to see more about the other languages that are offered from Middlebury Interactive Languages make sure to check out the Main Post on the Homeschool Review Crew blog.  You’ll also find other levels of German and more reviews about Elementary German as well.  Middlebury Interactive Languages can also be found on social media through their Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.  

 

 

Homeschool Crew Review Disclaimer

Large Family Freezer Cooking

Large Family Freezer Cooking

Homeschool Review Crew

MyFreezEasy.com Freezer Meal Plan Membership {MyFreezEasy}
 

Recently through the Homeschool Review Crew we received a Premium Annual Membership to MyFreezEasy to help with our large family freezer cooking.  Our MyFreezEasy.com Freezer Meal Plan Membership gave us access to many meal plans including specialty ones like the gluten free that we need!

With our membership we are able to have access to meal plans.  Most meal plans include five recipes.  Our membership allows us to customize meal plans as well.  This is great for me since we also have some tried and true favorites that I like to freeze and have on hand for meals.  A huge selling point for us on this program is that each recipe includes modifications for making them gluten and dairy free.  Since we have two little girls who can’t have dairy this is great for me.  It means that when I’m doing our large family freezer cooking I don’t have to do that all on my own.

 

Large Family Freezer Cooking

 

 

Meal Plans

There are different meal plans to choose from including Traditional meals, Gluten Free meals, Clean Eats Meals, Chicken Only Meals, Ground Beef Meals, and Slow Cooker Meals.  Also different months may bring different plans, for instance in October there is a Pork only meals as well.  I primarily browsed and used the Gluten Free meals, Clean Eats Meals, and Slow Cooker Meals.  I could also see us using the Ground Beef meals in the future as we buy half a cow and get quite a bit of ground beef to use in casseroles and such.

Large family freezer cooking can seem daunting.  Now, you can’t just pop onto a meal plan and follow it to the letter and get a meal for your large family with this plan.  You are going to have to do some multiplication as well but it’s not that difficult if you’re used to making meals for a large family.

 

Large Family Freezer Cooking

 

 

What We Used

For the month of October some of the Clean Eats meals are really good!  We made the Paleo Chicken Taco Salad and it didn’t even make it to the freezer.  By the time I was done with the prep I’d decided it was supper because I wanted to eat it ASAP!!  I did go back and make some to freeze as well.  This recipe is written to serve 4 so I multiplied it by 3 to get to 12 servings which is enough for our family of 11 eaters.  Baby doesn’t count yet since he’s still only 4 months old!

A recipe from the Clean Eats meals that went straight to my freezer and is going to be coming out on Wednesdays to go into the slow cooker is Slow Cooker Italian Chicken and Vegetables.  It was super simple to make and easily put in the freezer. The directions show you how to make two meals of four servings each so I just multiplied again by three so I could make two meals of 12 servings each.

I’m greatly enjoying this program and think most families can benefit from it.  It’s so nice to have meals in the freezer ready to go.  Simply take one out the night before you need it and tada you’ve got supper ready to go the next day.  The only planning involved is getting it out of the freezer!  I love that this program also provides the labels that you need for the dishes as well so it’s easy to tell what you have in the freezer and how to prepare it.

Learn More

If you’d like to find out more about large family freezer cooking of the MyFreezEasy membership please go to the main Homeschool Review Crew blog and check out all the linked up blog posts.  You can also find MyFreezEasy online on facebook, instagram, and pinterest

 

Homeschool Crew Review Disclaimer

Improve Handwriting {Homeschool Review Crew}

Improve Handwriting 

Homeschool Review Crew

Our latest Homeschool Review Crew review product has allowed us to improve handwriting in our house.  The product is a download of Perfect Reading, Beautiful Handwriting from Everyday Education, LLC.  

 

Beautiful Handwriting, Literature and Poetry {Everyday Education, LLC}

 

I was very pleased to get this review as I myself wanted to use this handwriting course.  Also, I wanted to see my older children’s handwriting improve.  This isn’t just a here is how you form the letters properly course.  It’s more of a here is how to make your handwriting gorgeous course.  And, it doesn’t disappoint.  

Old Made New

Let me touch on the entire product for a few minutes.  This is called Perfect Reading, Beautiful Handwriting.  It’s not just meant to help improve handwriting, that’s just a side benefit.  The actual intent of this product is to teach any child to read and write in 60 days.  It’s a phonics course designed for a beginning reader or as remedial work.  The original of this book is very old and written by Caroline Joy Adams.  It has been redone and a foreword added by Janice Campbell who also happens to be the author of Excellence in Literature.

 

Improve Handwriting {Homeschool Review Crew}

 

We really did not heavily use the phonics portion as I was too excited to use the handwriting in italics section.  The phonics goes in a step by step fashion so that each step builds on the previous one.  As I mentioned above it can be used for a beginning reader, a struggling reader, or as remedial work for an older reader.  

While we did receive the ebook for download and review, a physical copy of the book is available.  If I were to buy this product for myself I would have preferred the physical product. This is just personal preference as I enjoy having a real book rather than just pieces of paper printed out.  I’m a bit old fashioned that way.

About The Book

This is a 218 page book or download.  The physical book retails for $29.  I consider this a perfect fit for us with my love of using the Charlotte Mason method for homeschooling.  You don’t have to use or love Charlotte Mason to enjoy the benefits of this program though.  Really, you wouldn’t even have to be a homeschooler, just a parent who wants to work with your child on letter recognition, letter writing, and reading.  Or want to improve handwriting for yourself or your child.

The layout is wonderful in that what you are copying or practicing is on the same page as their example.  No need to flip back and forth through pages to see what the example looked like or to see whether you’ve matched theirs or not.  It’s all their on one page.

Lessons are short and easy to do.  They don’t require any prep work and are simple for the child.  It is recommended to use this daily as the lessons do build upon each other.  I’m looking forward to using the phonics portion with my three year old in the next year or so.  

I used the letter tracing and writing practice with my five year old who can already sound out short words.  This helped her to understand more of how to write the letters plus their sounds.  It also reinforced proper handwriting.

If you’d like to learn more about how to improve handwriting with Perfect Reading, Beautiful Handwriting or the other products Crew members were offered from Everyday Education, LLC please visit the Main Homeschool Review Crew blog and check out all the blog posts linked up.  You can also find them on social media through facebook, pinterest, twitter, linked in, google +, and a second facebook page

 

Homeschool Crew Review Disclaimer

History Through Books {Homeschool Review Crew}

History Through Books

Homeschool Review Crew

History Through Books {Homeschool Review Crew}

 

Do you love history?  We do!  I also like using a more Charlotte Mason approach in our homeschool.  Learning history through books is the perfect way to go!  We’re beyond excited to tell you about a new series of books that we’ve recently been reviewing through the Homeschool Review Crew.  It’s the If You Were Me and Lived In . . . . series brought to you by Carole P. Roman and Awaywegomedia.com.  We received four titles for our review!

The four titles we received are If You Were Me and Lived In . . . Elizabethan England(An Introduction to Civilizations Throughout Time)(Volume 3), If You Were Me and Lived in . . . the Middle Ages(An Introduction to Civilizations Throughout Time)(Volume 6), If You Were Me and Lived in . . . Colonial America(An Introduction to Civilizations Throughout Time)(Volume 4), and If You Were Me and Lived in . . . Renaissance Italy(An Introduction to Civilizations Throughout Time)(Volume 2).  

These learning history through books titles do not have to be done in order of volumes.  Which is wonderful!  It allows for kids to pick what time period most interests them and dig in.  No slow going through titles that hold no appeal for them just to get to the fun stuff.

I personally love the Elizabethan England period and couldn’t wait to dig into that book with my children.  Learning history through books is so much fun.  Well, it is to me!  And thankfully my children have inherited my love of reading and history as well. The books are engaging and full of information.  When you travel to Elizabethan England you become the child of a mid-class tradesman.  But, you also learn about the class of people above and below you.  You learn about the entire time period without really realizing you’re learning.  This is why learning history through books is so much fun!   This book is 50 pages long including the important people section and glossary. 

 

If You Were Me and Lived in ... {by Carole P. Roman and Awaywegomedia.com}
 

After going through the Elizabethan England book we jaunted back into time through the Middle Ages.  It’s a bit longer than the first at 97 pages long.  We could have done these in order probably but I was in a hurry for the Elizabethan England. It’s my favorite time period!  Medieval would be a close second though.  In the middle ages we got to become wealthy(where we were middle class in Elizabethan).  This was a new and fun experience and even my three year old daughter was interested in the book and what we were reading.  Blood letting brought about a very long discussion as well. 

 

If You Were Me and Lived in ... {by Carole P. Roman and Awaywegomedia.com}
 

We decided to stay with this theme and went to Renaissance Italy next.  It’s again a bit thinner at 53 pages long.  I can’t say that I have ever put a lot of study into the Renaissance though I do like the time period.  It’s not a favorite that’s garnered a lot of attention.  I love that in all of the books they show the city or area that you’re studying in a then and a now picture for comparison.  This is great and leads to a lot of good observations and study.  We also love finding all the names that might have been.  Some bring a lot of laughs from my children.  Studying the Renaissance also gave us more information about why people didn’t drink water.

 

If You Were Me and Lived in ... {by Carole P. Roman and Awaywegomedia.com}
 

Our last stop brought us to Colonial America.  This would be an amazing book to add to a Thanksgiving unit study.  It is 61 pages long.  There are other books in this series about different periods in American history but this is the one we were sent.  It’s 61 pages long.  You’re in for a fun adventure in this book as you start out in England before going to the Netherlands and finally America.  

This book series brings you history through books in a way that children of all ages will love and enjoy.  It’s not the dry history that makes you memorize dates and names though.  The history you’re learning is much more fun!  Learn the clothes that were worn, the way they wore their hair, the food they ate, etc.  History through books helps bring about the discovery of history through the eyes of a child their own age living in a different time.  It’s fun yet also learning which is the best combination!

If You Were Me and Lived in ... {by Carole P. Roman and Awaywegomedia.com}
Learn more about Awaywegomedia.com and the If You Were Me and Lived in . . .  series by visiting all the reviews linked up on the Main Crew Blog Page.  There were several different titles available for review so you’re sure to find a time period that interests you!  You can also find them on facebook, twitter, goodreads, and pinterest.

 

Homeschool Crew Review Disclaimer

Ancient Egypt {Homeschool Review Crew}

Ancient Egypt

Homeschool Review Crew

Heirloom Audio Productions ~Cat of Bubastes
Have you ever studied Ancient Egypt in your homeschool?  We actually are there in one of our history courses this year so I was very excited to see that The Cat of Bubastes was the newest release and Crew Review from Heirloom Audio Productions!  I of course applied gushing about how we’d love this one.  And I was so excited when we got it!!

We had already read the book as part of our study of ancient Egypt so receiving the audio drama of The Cat of Bubastes was a treat for us!  I have always found ancient Egypt fun and exciting.  Believe it or not, I had never read The Cat of Bubastes though.  It wasn’t until I became a mother and a homeschool mom that I found out about the works of G A Henty.  I also came into contact with Heirloom Audio Productions as a homeschool mom and that makes me very happy!  We’ve been blessed to review many of their works as members of the Homeschool Review Crew.

 

Ancient Egypt {Homeschool Review Crew}

 

Each time we receive an audio drama from Heirloom Audio Productions we also receive access to a ton of other great resources through their Study Guide.  This time we received:

  • access to a downloadable 47 page study guide
  • mp3 version of the soundtrack
  • colorful illustrated ebook of the G A Henty classic
  • printable copy of the inspirational verse featured
  • cast poster in printable form
  • access to the behind the scenes documentary(am I the only one who loves these??)
  • Live the Adventure Letter E-newsletter access

More of What We Love

The CD itself is a 2 disc set.  With all the extras we received it’s very easy to plan and make this a full unit study to help homeschoolers learn about ancient Egypt and a spiritual lesson too.  This audio drama focuses on perseverance, responsibility, and God’s providence.  

The cast for The Cat of Bubastes features Brian Blessed, Anthony Daniels, Sylvester McCoy, and John Rhys-Davies.  Am I the only one that hears the voice of John Rhys-Davies and immediately can see his face as being a bad guy in some movie?  Maybe?  He’s really good at that role and his voice is wonderful.  I love listening to him.

 

Heirloom Audio Productions ~Cat of Bubastes
 

One of the things that I love about the study guides that Heirloom Audio Production gives us access to with their audio dramas is that it includes historical and biblical content.  They give me a starting point for helping my children dig deeper into the lessons that they can learn from the story. Let’s face it, I don’t have the time to find all that information on my own.  And I certainly don’t have the time to make a study guide of my own with ten kids and a farm/house to run!  I’m forever grateful to the people who do have the time and allow us to use their knowledge and expertise.

Interested in learning more about The Cat of Bubastes and Ancient Egypt?  Check out their facebook, twitter, google +, and instagram!  Also head on over to the Main Homeschool Review Crew blog page and find all the reviews linked up to read and enjoy!

 

Homeschool Crew Review Disclaimer

Phonics for Beginners {Homeschool Review Crew}

Phonics for Beginners

Homeschool Review Crew

Ultimate Phonics Reading Program {Spencer Learning}
Our most recent review with the Homeschool Review Crew came from Spencer Learning.  We received the Ultimate Phonics Reading Program for download and review.  It’s a great phonics for beginners program as well as for anyone struggling with phonics or reading.

Ultimate Phonics Reading Program {Spencer Learning}
We were given access to this phonics for beginners program via email.  It’s a download and can be used on all computers in the home.  A fun thing about this program is that anyone can use it within your household.  It’s not limited to one child or one computer which makes using it easier.  There are certain tech requirements for using the program.  If you have Windows you will need Windows 10, 8, 7, Vista or XP.  Mac users need OSX 10.5.8 or higher.

I have several beginning type schoolers still so this program sounded like a great fit for us.  Specifically, I have a five and a six year old who were eager to begin using this phonics for beginners curriculum.  My five year old has already done some phonics work and is doing simple word reading.  She loves school and excels at it.  Really she was forcing us to let her do school as a four year old, I just tried to keep it very simple and basic.  She’s taught herself how to read at the level she is at already!  Our six year old is somewhat developmentally delayed and hasn’t done any “formal” schooling yet.  She has had some access to some fun review products this year from the Homeschool Review Crew but is still at a level I would call beginner.

Ultimate Phonics Reading Program {Spencer Learning}

So, how do you use this thing?  

It’s really very simple to use.  The first step is downloading the product from the email you’re sent.  This went very easily which was great because I’m not that computer savvy.  Simply follow the prompts and tada it’s done!!   Next you’re going to want to use the curriculum.  This company, Spencer Learning, has been very helpful and sends lots of fun and interesting emails to help make sure we’re getting the most out of the product.  

Phonics for Beginners {Homeschool Review Crew}

If your child is not a beginning reader but rather a weak or struggling reader, you can use this product too.  It’s also designed to strengthen a child’s reading ability as well as spelling.  Phonics for beginners can also be called phonics for the struggling reader or phonics for students struggling with English as a second language.  Lots of children can benefit from this curriculum so make sure you check out all the ways it can be used.  

It’s also recommended for children with autism and dyslexia.  I have to confess that we’re not a huge fan of online or computer curriculum because of the fact that we only have two computers and there are 12 of us here in the house.  That’s a lot of people sharing the same equipment.  But this program is one that I make the time for my two girls to use.  Sometimes they use it together with one being the primary user and the other watching.  My three year old even likes to watch and learn with her siblings.

It only takes a few minutes a day to use the program.  Phonics for beginners is simple to use and doesn’t require a lot of parental help which is great. This means that my girls can use it while I’m working on school with the older kids.  It helps to keep them occupied.  Though it’s a good thing it doesn’t take much time, the girls wish their lessons lasted longer!!!

Ultimate Phonics Reading Program {Spencer Learning}
Interested in what others thought of this fun phonics for beginners program?  Check out the linkup on the Main Homeschool Review Crew blog.  You can also find Spencer Learning on facebook and twitter.  

 

Homeschool Crew Review Disclaimer

Printable Homeschool Worksheets {Crew Review}

Printable Homeschool Worksheets

Homeschool Crew Review

Join me in exploring a new to us site!  I’ve been enjoying our last days before we hit our more structured school time with some printable homeschool worksheets and videos over on HelpTeaching.com!  We received the Help Teaching Pro Subscription to review as a member of the Homeschool Review Crew.

 

Printable Homeschool Worksheets {Crew Review}

 

We received a one year subscription to the online Help Teaching Pro Subscription from HelpTeaching.com for the purposes of this review.  On this site you find worksheets and helpful teaching videos focused on math, English language arts, and science.  You can also make your own worksheets and tests through the site.

For this review we’re focusing on the younger grades(elementary) which works wonderfully for me as that’s all I currently have!  My oldest is only in fifth grade this year so we didn’t use anything about the sixth grade level on the site.  Each course is listed with a corresponding grade level so it’s easy to see what might fit for your student. The site does provide lessons/worksheets/etc for grades kindergarten through 12th though so if you have older children this will still work for you.

Science 

Primarily, we have been using the science section.  There are some great resources hidden in there.  When you login and head to lessons you’ll find a key to guide you to where the lesson is and what company has compiled it.  That’s the fun thing with this printable homeschool worksheets site.  They give you access to specific lessons that you can only access through their site plus lessons from other places like Khan Academy and YouTube.  We steered clear of anything YouTube just because you never know what those will lead to.

We started out doing six lessons in Biology.  These are between 15-30 minutes long for the lesson portion plus however long is needed to answer the worksheet questions.  There are also tests available to go with the lessons.  These particular Biology lessons are listed as third grade but my older children were able to do them as well as we had not studied these subjects yet.

We did not do a lot of the tests as I’m not a huge testing person.  The tests that we did do I approached more as a “review” than a test.  I have a few children who will get very anxious when they know it’s a test and then you have no idea what they really are remembering.  They can’t focus and take the test as a test.  Thus, why we do a lot of reviews around here.  Another great thing we use is having them teach the lesson to a younger sibling.  You will find now that even my three and five year olds have a passable knowledge of what we studied simply by being taught from the older siblings.

We explored Earth Science as well as that is what we are studying this school year along with Astronomy.  I’m looking forward to adding these in as we go along to supplement what our current curriculum is teaching.

Math

Help Teaching Pro Subscription {HelpTeaching.com}
We explored the math section a bit as well.  This I used more with my younger ones.  The ages for these are three, five, and six.  Grade wise I’d say we’ve got two preschoolers and an advanced kindergartner.  

In exploring the math section it is set up like the science in that you’re being told what grade the lesson will correspond with.  Again, there is a video to watch and then questions to answer.  For these children a lot of the questions I was asking them instead of them reading them.  

There are fewer lessons in the math section.  We exhausted the kindergarten level ones though we could watch them several more times without my kids complaining.  They really enjoyed being able to do “big kid school” and I love that I can give them review worksheets using the printable homeschool worksheets that go with the lessons.

Learn More

Interested in learning more about these printable homeschool worksheets and HelpTeaching.com?  Simply head to the Main Blog and check out all the reviews or find them on facebook, twitter, and pinterest

 

Homeschool Crew Review Disclaimer

Homeschool French {Homeschool Crew Review}

Homeschool French

Homeschool Crew Review

I love foreign languages and have always wanted to share them with my children as well as learn them along side them.  The past few weeks we’ve been trying out some homeschool French!  Armfield Academic Press has been kind enough to let us review their Getting Started with French homeschool curriculum through the Homeschool Review Crew(formerly what I would call the TOS Crew).

 

Homeschool French {Homeschool Crew Review}

 

Getting Started with French is a physical product so it was mailed to us.  Part of it is accessed online though in the form of downloadable audio to go with your lesson. You get a book in the mail for you to use and then access to the online portion for your downloads.  Everyone knows the best way to learn a foreign language is to hear it spoken.  It’s a bit hard to speak it if you don’t know what it should sound like!

I was pleased that this review came when it did.  We are doing a book study of Madeline with my younger children so we were able to incorporate learning some French words as well as studying Paris.  Lots of fun to be had and this homeschool French was the perfect addition to our book study!

Homeschool French

The daily lessons are short which makes doing them everyday very simple and fun.  They’re really pretty hassle free, you don’t need extra things to complete them.  My kids thought they were very fun as well so that always adds a positive spin to things!

For our purposes, I sat with all the kids and we went over the lessons together.  I find that when studying a foreign language with my kids it’s easiest if I study it with them so that we are all helping each other.  They like having mommy learn with them and it of course is great when they’re all learning and helping each other.

This book would be great to give to an older junior high or high school student and letting them learn on their own.  It can easily be self guided at that stage where they can attend to it themselves without a parents help.  

There are 172 lessons within the book.  As I stated above they are short and quick so they really don’t add a lot of time to your homeschool day.  If you work on this four days a week it would take 43 weeks to finish it.  That’s our plan anyway!!

Learn More!

Armfield Academic Press has two other Getting Started with. . . . language books already with another on the way.  Right now they have Latin and Spanish.  I’ve been wanting to start Latin with my children again so I’ll be looking into that one.  Coming soon is Getting Started with Russian which would be very interesting to learn I think!

Homeschool French has added not just a subject to our homeschool but also a fun family time as we enjoy learning a language together.  The younger children can’t read the words and don’t understand all of it. Nevertheless, they are quickly picking up the words and using them appropriately.  It’s amazing how well the little ones can learn languages.  They do better than me!

Interested in learning more about adding Getting Started with French to your routine and making it your go to homeschool French?  Check out the Main Blog where all the reviews are linked up as well as find them on facebook.

 

Homeschool Crew Review Disclaimer

 

Homeschool Supplements {TOS Crew Review}

Homeschool Supplements

TOS Crew Review

As part of the TOS Crew we get an opportunity to review lots of products.  Recently as I was thinking of what homeschool supplements I was going to need to purchase this year a new review through CHSH-Teach.com came through.  We received an annual subscription(so a year subscription) to the CHSH Download Club.

 

Christian HomeSchool Hub {Download Club}
 

As evidenced by it being a download club, these homeschool supplements are downloadable and entirely online.  It’s really simple to use.  You go to their website, log in, and browse.  Find something you like and you can just download and print it off.  Easy as can be.  

I was pleasantly surprised with the vast amount of downloads that CHSH-Teach.com had available for us.  There is a vast array of different subjects and subject matter that can be used.  If a homeschool parent wanted to create unit studies using the resources on CHSH Download Club, they could!

My favorite discovery when browsing through all the downloads was that they have the McGuffey readers on there!  I love these readers and have the complete set on my school set of bookshelves.  In my mind these are still a great resource for us to use when teaching our children to read.  If you don’t own a set the option to download them through here is wonderful.

 

Homeschool Supplements {TOS Crew Review}

 

Back to the homeschool supplements.  My favorite section to use and print off for my children now is the holiday studies.  Through the summer and fall we aren’t hard-core into school due to the weather being nice and living on a farm.  We’re still doing school, don’t get me wrong, but we’re not in our books all day everyday.

Holiday studies are a great way to be learning in addition to your regular studies and covering fun things.  We could go outside to do these or take them with us when we walked out to find the horses.  A great spot for schooling is a small area we have set up in our wooded bluff area.  We have benches to sit on and it has a natural cathedral type effect to it.  So peaceful.  Well, peaceful when there aren’t ten kids there maybe.  

The other section that we have used the most during our review period is the Bible section.  I’m loving using their Bible memorization sheets with my kids.  I want them to have a large memory bank of verses when they leave my house and this gives me a great place to start.  Right now we’re working through the A-Z memory verse cards though I’m looking forward to using their Bible copywork pages for the holidays they correspond with too.

I’ve discussed the homeschool supplements that I’ve used and found on the CHSH site.  What I haven’t mentioned is that this is more than just a spot where you can go to find curriculum.  It’s also a community where you can add curriculum or worksheets you have created as well.  You can find help and support through this site in addition to the homeschool supplements.  There is a forum available to chat with other homeschool parents who utilize the site as well where you can find friendship and moms in your situation can offer helpful hints and tips.

Personally, I have not had a lot of time to chat with others in the forum, but I have browsed some of the topics for special needs homeschooling and found them helpful.  The forum has lots of different topics or threads that you can browse such as groups by student grade/age or laws that homeschoolers should be aware of.  There is also a section for unlimited downloads which is where you can find the resources that other homeschool moms have decided to share.

If you’d like to learn more about CHSH-Teach.com and the homeschool supplements they offer make sure to head over to the Main TOS Crew blog and look at all the other reviews.  You can also find them on their facebook page or group, twitter, pinterest, google + group and page, Linked-In, and Tumblr.  

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Apologia Astronomy {TOS Crew Review}

Apologia Astronomy

TOS Crew Review

Apologia: Exploring Creation with Astronomy Review
I love astronomy and have wanted to share it with my children.  A favorite curriculum of ours is Apologia.  Recently, Apologia Educational Ministries offered up their Exploring Creation with Astronomy, 2nd Edition for Crew review.  I applied as soon as I saw Apologia astronomy!  It sounded wonderful and fit right in with our science topic of the year which is astronomy!

Apologia astronomy arrived at our door and the whole house started shouting with joy!  The box included a student text, notebooking journal, jr. notebooking journal, and an audio cd.

 

apologia astronomy {TOS Crew Review}

 

The notebooking journal is geared towards grades 3/4 and older.  I put my oldest age 11 and fifth grade in this book.  It fit her well and she was able to understand and answer the questions it posed.  She didn’t like the spaces for answering questions though as they were too small.  Her handwriting is still a bit big and took up more space than was allowed.  To help with this I had her write her answers in a notebook for the long questions.

The Jr. Notebooking Journal is geared for Kindergarten through grades 2/3.  For this one I decided to use my 10 year old daughter was is right around this grade level.  For reading purposes she’s a solid third grade but for writing she leans closer to a second grade level so it was a good fit for her.  She did some complaining about writing but overall did really well with the journal and enjoyed the subject matter.

How We Use It 

Because I was already planning on all the kids using a different science curriculum that was going to focus on astronomy for part of the year I knew that I was going to want them all to listen to the textbook reading.  So, instead of having the girls each read the sections by themselves I read them aloud to the whole family.  We’d chat about what we read and then the two girls would do their journal assignments.

We’re following the schedule laid out by Apologia so this astronomy course will last us the full year.  The activities are done by all of us which makes for lots of fun times.  Those students not doing the journal pages think it’s fun that they don’t have to do all the writing but I’m impressed by the increased comprehension that the girls doing the journal pages are having.

The audio CD contains the full text.  This is like listening to someone read you the textbook.  We did not use this function as the CD player in our van is not working currently so we didn’t have a way to listen to it while driving.  While we could have listened to it at home I enjoyed reading the book to my children so we did that instead.

Want to learn more about Apologia astronomy?  Check out what other crew members thought of their review products on the Main TOS blog.  You can also find Apologia astronomy on facebook, twitter, pinterest, and instagram.

 

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