Archive for Books

Oct
24

A Wholehearted Conversation

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Over the years, I have often been asked, “How can you homeschool your children,” usually quickly followed by,  “I just don’t think I’m smart enough to do that!”  Inevitably, I respond by assuring them that I don’t believe that I have all of the answers to my children’s educational needs, or that I’m even required to, but I can find the answers.  After early elementary school, academically, my job is one of teaching study skills, application and discipline, providing large doses of encouragement and support, and supplying necessary resources.  I am better equipped and empowered when I utilize resources for parents, too.

A recent conversation with my friend, we’ll call her Heidi, went like this:

ME:  “I have a TOS crew review to write on a huge book!  It’s 8 1/2″ X 11″ and more than 350 pages!  If I could own only one book for homeschooling (counting curriculum, but excluding The Bible, of course) it would be this one.”

[Her face looked a bit shocked.  I’ve been homeschooling for more than 25 years; so, I definitely had her attention.]

HEIDI:  “What!  What is it?  Above curriculum?  How?  Why?”

ME:  “Ultimately, I can pull teaching material from anywhere, but this book reminds me of why I homeschool.  Why I do it now, why I did it then and why I would do it all, again, but do it better!  The authors say that those reading it usually fall into 1 of 3 categories:

  1. Those that are already using a wholehearted approach to teaching and have followed their leadership for years.  This book was actually first published in 1994 and revised in 1996.  It is now (2011) in it’s third printing, with more than 100 new pages added and a large portion of the original pages rewritten.  Content and resources needed to be updated and they, like most of us, have learned a thing or two in fifteen years.  These readers will discover a new or forgotten morsel of truth in this edition.
  2. Those, like me, who have been homeschooling for cen-tu-ries (intended hyperbole) and are in need of affirmation, inspiration or even a little coaxing to continue on this path.  When I started reading this book, I wondered why I didn’t have it in 1994 or 1996.  I was homeschooling then, why now?  Because now is when I need to be reminded of my desire and my right to raise our children “in the fear and admonition of The Lord;”  to emulate and teach an I’m-all-in-(body, mind, heart, soul and strength)-devotion to God, consistently and constantly.  This book has been a transfusion to my life-battered being.  I remember why.
  3. Those who are fresh to the idea of homeschooling their children.  The young explorers that appreciate having good navigational tools at hand.  A compass, a map and a light for the way ahead.  This is a guide, written by those that scouted and traveled the road before you.  This book is a vision shared, one of “Wholehearted Learning – a Biblical, commonsense, discipleship-based lifestyle of home education using real books, real life, and real relationships.”

“It’s an apologia WholeHeart publication and it’s titled, Educating the WholeHearted Child, by Clay and Sally Clarkson.

 

It gives you a layout, a design, a plan…to make your home “a heart-filling, rich, and lively learning environment where your children will love to learn as naturally as they love to play.”

HEIDI:  “Are you a speed reader?  Did you read the whole thing?  Can I read it when you’re finished with it?”

ME:  “You know that I can read quickly, but you won’t believe it, I’ve actually written in the margins of this book.”

[Her brow furrowed and comprehension was a bit slow.  We do not write in books unless they are consumable workbooks.  It is a firmly established momma-law, taught from the time my children are knee-high to a grasshopper.]

HEIDI:  “YOU wrote in the book?”

ME:  “I did.  I’m an adult and it is my book!  It is a high gloss paperback, but it is clearly non-consumable.  I’ve found myself wanting to savor it and digest it.  I’ve highlighted sentences and paragraphs!  I haven’t read the whole book, yet.  I’ve never lost sight of the destination, but this book has renewed my joy in the journey of homeschooling!  I’m not in a rush to read it,  just for the sake of reading it, I want to sort of meander along and absorb my surroundings.  At the moment, my youngest child is only 7 years old, so I don’t foresee being finished with this book any time soon.  You’ll want your own clean copy, anyway.  Put it on your Christmas list and I’ll see what I can do.”

HEIDI:  “That’s a nice thought, but I don’t know if I want to wait until Christmas, that’s 60 days away.  How much is it?”

ME:  “Sixty days, are you kidding me?  (Between the heart palpitations I’m thinking, where has the year gone!)  It’s going to be here in no time!  (Think peace, I think.  Don’t freak out!  Enjoy Thanksgiving, first, my brain tries to reassure me.)  Educating the WholeAHearted Child is $22.00.  It would be the best gift to get if you’re even considering homeschooling.

It has chapters pertaining to:  HOME, LEARNING, METHODS for Discipleship Studies, Disciplined Studies, The Study of Ideas, Discovery Studies and The Study of Living with an eye on your child’s Divine design and natural bent, and LIVING.

You can look up *https://apologia.securesites.net/pdfs/TOC/297.pdf to see the Table of Contents in detail,  and if you go to *https://apologia.secutesites.net/pdfs/sample/297.pdf you can view a sample of the entire 1st chapter.  You’ll notice there is additional information along the margins of the main text, Scripture references and notable quotes.  There’s even more in other chapters, throughout the book.  You’ll find answers to questions, like What about Socialization?  Information and statistics.  “…nearly 4 percent of the school-age population are homeschoolers.”  That’s  more than 2 million K-12 children in the U.S. that are homeschooled, which is considerably more than the estimated 30,000 when I began to homeschool.  There are recommended resources and suggested math tools, lists of good books and field trip tips and rules.

Starting in chapter two there are italicized notes, under the heading of IN OUR HOME.  Located at the bottom of a page, these snippets offer a glimpse into the Clarkson’s own home.  This is what you’ll read on page 217, “With all the baskets lying around our house, someone might think we like to shop at the local Farmers’ Market.  Except for one thing – they are all filled with books!  Next to just about every comfortable couch or overstuffed chair, there is a big can or wicker basket of fruits and vegetables for the mind.  The baskets were originally filled with random or topical selections of books (holiday, illustrated stories, heroes, preschool, etc.).  Later we turned them into personal reading – one for each child and one for library books.  We change the selection periodically with input from the children.  It’s so fulfilling to see our children grab books to read alone or together stretched out on the couch or stuffed into the overstuffed chair.  Now if we can just find a good Farmers’ Market for books.”  With all of their years of personal education, experience and accomplishments, Clay and Sally Clarkson seem very humble.  I didn’t find judgment or absolutes in this book.  I encountered an undeniable love of Christ, family, life and learning, and the desire to pass that on to anyone and everyone that will listen.

Oh, I almost forgot, there are also more than 15 essential, time-saving, record-keeping, organizational forms at the end of the book.  One of my favorites is the “My 24 Family ‘Ways to Be” – Godly Character” form.  The “Ways to Be” are from Our 24 Family Ways:  A Family Devotional Guide by Clay Clarkson from Whole Heart Press.  24 Character traits and their descriptions are listed and memorized.  They are all simply and clearly written, but we’ve been concentrating on three for the past few weeks.   #8  Forgiveness – Treating someone who has offended me as though I had never been hurt.  #18  Peacemaker – Finding a way to avoid or end a disagreement rather than to begin or win it.   #21  Integrity – Knowing what is right and living that way.

HEIDI:  “I don’t think you have to convince me.  I think it’s more of a decision of when, not if; so, if I decide that I can’t wait until Christmas for this book, or if I decide to give it to myself for Christmas, but at an earlier date, where can I find it?”

ME:  “Apologia Educational Ministries, Inc. has a website at *https://apologia.securesites.net/ and you can find it there under apologia Press, Resources for Parents, along with Read for the Heart, another apologia book, by the Clarkson’s daughter, Sarah, that I reviewed this past May.”


or Contact:

Apologia Educational Ministries, Inc.

1106 Meridian Plaza Suite 220

Anderson, IN  46016  US

telephone – 888.524.4724

and

Questions or Comments for the Clarkson’s can be addressed to:

Whole Heart Ministries

P.O. Box 3445

Monument, CO  80132

email – www.wholeheart.org

telephone – 888.488.4466

ME:  “I’ll let you know, Heidi,  when I get my review posted and you can read my final thoughts about it then.  But, honestly, I suspect it’ll sound a lot like this conversation, shared straight from the heart.  I’ll attach a link to my crew mates reviews, too; so, you can read some other opinions.”

And so it is…

There’s little more to write for this review.  I think Educating the WholeHearted Child is a treasure chest full of God’s goodness, and every time I dip my hand into it, turn the page, I pull out another priceless gem.  I find it remarkable that this book has made such a defining impact on my life.  I trust God that His timing is perfect and this is the exact place of weariness that I needed it’s restorative power.  I am ever in awe of Him and His great love for me and the family that I adore.

Blessings,

 

This product was given to me, free of charge, in exchange, for my honest review, as a member of the TOS Homeschool Crew. I receive no other compensation for my reviews on this blog.  The opinions expressed are my own.

Your comments are most welcome.  Thanks. 

 

*Contents of this blog are copyrighted;  they are the property of Knee Deep In Grace and may not be used without written permission.

 

 

 

 

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May
27

A Beautiful Voice

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I’ve always been one to believe (or at least wish) that I could learn from others mistakes or that I might be blessed by embracing the how’s and why’s of another’s success.  As a parent of many children, multiple ages, I look at the lives of my finished  (using this word lightly, knowing we’re not done until we die) older ones; note their struggles or difficulties and wonder what I can do differently to help the younger ones avoid the same pitfalls.  I find extra strength in Revelation 12:11, “And they overcame him (the devil) because of the blood of The Lamb (Jesus Christ) and because of the word of their testimony…”

 


Sarah Clarkson, is a former homeschool student.  She is now an adult author and blogger.   She has written Read for the Heart, published by Apologia Press; found under Resources for Parents.  It is a wonderful resource for every home school.  An outstanding book about – books.  But, more importantly to me, it is a resounding testimony; the how’s and why’s of another’s success, because Sarah is, in part, her parent’s success.  They raised her on good, whole, living books.  She shares vibrant memories of times spent together, reading aloud.  She has a passion for reading and for sharing the wonder of
“whole books for wholehearted families
,” through her writing.  She has a beautiful voice and I hope it will be heard by countless hearts.

 

 

 

 

384 pages – cover to cover.  Read for the Heart answers the questions:  What should my children read? and at what age?  It is a book I will refer to, time and again, which makes it, in my opinion, a valuable $17.00 investment.

 

Click cover for PDF Sample of Chapter 6 – The Golden Age Classics

 

 

Sarah coaxes, teaches, prompts and suggests ways to begin, to have a “Life by Books.” She gives a clear “Roadmap for Using This Book.” Then, she entices with Titles, Authors, Illustrators, Descriptions and more…

  • Picture Books
  • The Golden Age of Classics
  • Children’s Fiction
  • Fairy Tales and Fantasy
  • History and Biography
  • Spiritual Reading for Children
  • Poetry
  • Music, Art and Nature

 

There are more than 25 pages of Appendices:  Caldecott Medalists, Newbery Medalists, Historical Fiction by G.A. Henty, Landmark History Books, The Trailblazer Series, and A Few of My Favorite Things, such as:

 

Favorite Read-Alouds for the Whole Family

The Gold Thread by Norman Macleod

The Railway Children by E. Nesbit

and…

Favorites for Girls

Calico Captive by Elizabeth George Speare

Little Women by Louisa May Alcott

and…

Favorites for Boys

The Little Britches series by Ralph Moody

The Story of King Arthur and His Knights by Howard Pyle

and…

Favorite Audiobooks

Rainbow Valley by Lucy Maud Montgomery (read by Nadia May)

The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis (Focus on the Family Radio Theatre)

 

Sarah Clarkson writes, “As I have considered the many wonderful reasons to read, a steady progression of scenes from my childhood has come to my mind, each one a poignant portrait of a reading life. One by one, these scenes remind me of the reasons I read:  for a wakened heart, a strong mind, and a steadfast soul. This book will help you discover how great stories can form the lives of your children – how books can be powerful companions and teachers that will spur your children’s hearts and minds to life.”

 

Contact Sarah – email – storyformed@gmail.com

or her blogThoroughlyalive.com

 


Click logo for website

 

Contact Apologia:

phone 888.524.4724

or writeApologia Educational Ministries

1106 Meridian Plaza Suite 220

Anderson, IN  46016  US

 

Click The Crew header and read additional reviews of Read for the Heart.

 

 

 

 

Blessings,

 

This product was given to me, free of charge, in exchange, for my honest review, as a member of the TOS Homeschool Crew. I receive no other compensation for my reviews on this blog.  The opinions expressed are my own.

 

Thank you…

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May
23

All Together

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When I began schooling my children at home, over 25 years ago, there weren’t many, if any, school materials geared toward home use.  Public and private school text books were adapted, by parents/teachers to meet individual needs. We did a lot of that. It took extra time, but it was possible.  We also taught from every-day-living.  We still do a lot of that. A general, life-is-school and school-is-life; there’s-a-lesson-in-every-thing, approach.  I would find a scope and sequence for a specific grade level and then pull-in and organize various resources to build our curriculum each year.  I clearly remember using books published by Houghton Mifflin, Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, Scott Foresman, Prentice Hall, Macmillan and Evan-Moor.  Eventually, we used Abeka Book and Bob Jones Press, but even those were originally written for private christian school use, and not homeschool.  There was so much busy-seat-work, because they were intended to keep a full classroom of student’s occupied.  Teacher’s editions weren’t available to the individual, either.  Everything had to be studied and done ahead of time, so answer keys could be written.  I am amazed and delighted at how far home education has come in the last 25 years!

Pearson Education is now the “world’s leading educational and professional publisher.”  You may recognize some of their brands:  Scott Foresman, Addison-Wesley, Prentice Hall, Longman, and many others.

 

Click logo to read history

 

Pearson is trusted and respected, drawing on a heritage that stretches back to 1725, when Thomas Longman published the first book, typeset by Benjamin Franklin.  They provide products, programs and services, in every subject, for PreK-20.

 

Click cover for pricing guide

 

I received the Scott Foresman, Social Studies – All Together, 1st Grade text book, for review.  It is high-gloss, hard-bound, with bold, brilliant, color pictures on every page!  It is not written for homeschool use, but it is a great supplement to any social studies curriculum.  Interestingly enough, I was not given a teacher’s edition or any of the additional teaching aids/tools that are available; so, it was just like the good-ole-days.  I had to pay attention to the text, as we read it, so that I, too, could correctly answer the review questions at the end of each unit.  My 6 year old thought it was so funny that I had to do the same work that she had to do!

All-Together teaches students “what it means to be citizens of this nation – that respect, caring, responsibility, fairness, courage, and honesty are the pillars that make us strong.”  In each unit, there are pages dedicated to Citizen Heroes, and on the upper right corner of the page, one of the six pillars is highlighted.  Because of the consistency of the layout, my daughter would go to that area of the page, first, to see which pillar we were about to read.

 

Citizen Heroes

 

The following companies, and others, are partners-in-education with Pearson:

 

 

 

Their contribution is evident in the content and format of the book –

 

Dorling Kindersley

 

 

 

 

 

You open the over-size book to find a full-color Social Studies Handbook.  My young student was drawn-in completely and couldn’t wait to discover what was on the next page and the next page and…

 

 

We did put a home spin on the units.  Most of them had a reference to school or the bus or the cafeteria, etc.  “Your cafeteria is too noisy.  Tell steps you would take to solve the problem.”  We talked about the noise of living in a big family; what noises we liked, which ones we’d rather not hear and how to get more of one and less of the other.  We also discussed what it might feel like to eat lunch with others that you might not know very well.  Everything was adaptable and useful as a teaching element, even if it wasn’t used exactly as the authors expected.  That is the beauty and flexibility of schooling at home, though, isn’t it.

 

 

Unit 1 – Time for School
Unit 2 – In My Community
Unit 3 – Work! Work! Work!
Unit 4 – Our Earth, Our Resources
Unit 5 – This is Our Country

 

 

 

Map and Globe Skills
Biographies
Songs and Poems
Chart and Graph Skills
Vocabulary
Atlas
Picture Glossary
History and more

 

 

 

“…God shed His grace on thee…”

“…one Nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.”

“Our country’s motto is ‘In God We Trust.”

 

This was actually the first thing I looked for – does Pearson Education keep God where our Founding Fathers placed Him, over our Nation?  I’m pleased to say that in Social Studies – All Together they certainly do.

 

The student edition of this book is $43.47.  There is also a teacher’s edition, workbook and answer key, planning guide, resource package, readers, map tools, video field trips and more. Please note that some items can only be purchased with PO or school credit card, which is not homeschool friendly.

 

Click graphic for companion site!

 

There is free access to a companion site:  with a Social Studies library (dictionary, encyclopedia, and almanac), Current Events (In the News and Time for Kids), an Atlas (world & U.S. geography, facts and tools); “This Day In History” (attaches a when to a what or who), “Meet the People” (people & biographies), and Activities (by state, grade level/book and unit).  This site is full of information, plus it’s fun and easy to navigate.  Free downloads at Symbols of America, too!

 

 

 

Contact:

phone:  1.800.848.9500

Pearson

K12 Customer Service

P.O. Box 2500

Lebanon, IN  46052

 

My mates at TOS reviewed Social Studies – All Altogether – 1st Grade, enVision Math – 1st Grade; Reading Street – 2nd Grade.  Click the banner below to read all about it!

 

 

Blessings,

 

This product was given to me, free of charge, in exchange, for my honest review, as a member of the TOS Homeschool Crew. I receive no other compensation for my reviews on this blog.  The opinions expressed are my own.

Thank you for your comments.  I appreciate YOU!


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May
06

A New Friend

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If you’ve read many of my blog posts you have probably figured out that reading is fairly high on my list of wonderful things to do.  I’ve mentioned before that I hope to pass the love of all-things-bookish on to my children.  As a child, I learned, and now I teach, that, among other things,  reading allows one to travel – sometimes even through space and time; to meet new people and make new friends – real and imaginary – past and present.

I was recently introduced to Kregel Publications and author, Susan K. Marlow.  My youngest daughters met little miss Andrea Carter, Andi to her family and friends, on the Circle C Ranch.

My young one is six years old and so is Andi.  Andi has a pony; lives out west in the late 1800’s, and has to go to school in a schoolhouse.  We don’t own any horses.  We’ve always lived in the east and we certainly don’t live in the late 1800’s  (although many aspects would be a blessing, I admit I would miss having a washer and dryer, refrigerator, bread maker, cell phone and internet.)  We only leave home for school, if we’re going on a field trip or a picnic.  So…

Andi’s Scary School Days was a perfect adventure for my girls!  They were excited to turn every page.  Circle C Beginnings is a series of books written for 6-8 years old, but my big girl enjoyed Andi’s antics as much as her younger sister did.  There are four titles available now and two more due to be released in August of this year.

 

Click graphic for publishers discount

Since I have September birthdays still ahead, I think the whole set will make a great gift.  They are $4.99 each, but you get 30% off, now through August 31st, when you purchase directly from the publisher.  Just enter HOME11 during check out.  If you purchase from Susan’s website, you won’t find a discount, but you can order personalized copies.

These are wholesome, moral, entertaining and educational stories for our children.  There are free downloads available – Activity Packs with coloring pages – correlating to each book.  Vocabulary, math, writing, maps, history and more.  The illustrations, by Leslie Gammelgaard, can be copied and colored.

 

Circle C Beginnings are actually prequels to Susan K. Marlow’s already popular series, Circle C Adventures.  The adventures are written for 8-16 years old and feature a preteen  Andrea Carter and her grown horse, Taffy.  My daughters have suggested that “it would be nice if Ms. Susan continued to write about Andrea as she gets older; so she can get married and have a daughter or son of her own, and the adventures can go on and on through time and maybe across country.”  I love that they are invested in the story line.  How cool is that!

You can contact Susan K. Marlow on facebookclick the Circle C Beginnings graphic below or write to Susankmarlow@kregel.com. She loves to hear from her readers…

 

facebook page


It has been a pleasure to meet Kregel Publications.  They have Biblically based resources with a backlist of over 900 titles.

 

  • Biblical Studies
  • Pastoral Resources
  • Christian Living
  • Fiction
  • and many others

 

  • The Pictoral Guide Series, for middle-school and high-school age readers is definitely worth exploring

 

TOS Homeschool Review Crew members received one of Susan K. Marlow’s books from the Circle C Beginnings Series; so, you’ll want to read what they have to say – click the banner below for individual opinions.


 

Blessings,

 

This product was given to me, free of charge, in exchange, for my honest review, as a member of the TOS Homeschool Crew. I receive no other compensation for my reviews on this blog.  The opinions expressed are my own.

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May
04

Vintage Books

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I have hundreds of books, and then some.  Neatly organized on floor to ceiling shelves, stacked on tables, under tables and I’m sorry to say, packed away in boxes awaiting their rotation.

Most books that I read, while growing up, were not mine.  They were borrowed from the library or a close friend.  They were prized possessions, even if they did belong to someone else.  The binding was handled properly and the pages were never dog-eared.  One did not eat or drink while reading a book, lest something mar the pages.  I was raised to see the value in books, for purposes of education or fun; based on fact, fiction or fantasy, as a means to an end or just an escape to another place or time.

As an adult, I’ve acquired books of all shapes, sizes and genres.  Many times my husband has heard me say, “Oh, I need this book, or these books or that set of books, for this subject or that reason or because – “This is just beautiful!”  We’ve moved several times while we’ve been married and the books always move with us.  I have learned, over the years, to pack them in smaller boxes, because books are really, really heavy.  On more than one occasion I’ve heard, “I do not have room for anything else in this trailer.  You cannot move all of those books.”  My reply, “Leave the couch, the books must go.”  My reasoning – a couch or nearly anything else, can be replaced, fairly easily, but – books, especially old books; classics, or one you read to your child, five hundred times the first eighteen months of his life, are just too difficult to replace.

Because of this, I have been a bit reluctant to embrace Ebooks.  They just don’t have the same smell or feel as real books.

Because of Yesterday’s Classics, I am now an Ebook AND Kindle lover.  Because, what these do have is the same content as real books – illustrations and all; plus, the carry-anywhere-factor is huge!

I don’t have room for another bookshelf.  Well…I might be able to find one more space, but…my husband is much happier having my newest 225 books on the Kindle


For years, Yesterday’s Classics has been rebublishing books that were first published “in the golden age of children’s literature from 1880 to 1920…”  in high quality paper-back.  Vintage literature.  Now, in addition, every one of the 225 books they offer is available in EPUB and Kindle format!

 

 

 

This bundle is specially priced through May 31st; at $99.95 that’s less than 50 cents for each book.  Yes, many of these books are available online for free, but many of those have formatting issues, unlike these.  And, the majority of those do not have a table-of-contents, especially one that actually corresponds to the new layout in EPUB or Kindle.  Yesterday’s Classics also offers the convenience of having everything in one place, which gives this already overloaded momma more time to actually read to my children, instead of consuming my time searching for the right book.

 

 

Yesterday’s Classics has several of the titles used by these top curriculum writers:

Ambleside Online

Heart of Dakota

Living Books Curriculum

Tapestry of Grace

Pageant of History

Old Fashioned Education

 

 


 

They have republished books in 22 different genres –

  1. World History
  2. American History
  3. Science
  4. Ancient Greece
  5. Ancient Rome
  6. Early Civilizations
  7. Renaissance and Exploration
  8. Middle Ages
  9. Britain
  10. Fables
  11. Nature
  12. Fairy Tales
  13. Legends
  14. Biography
  15. Poetry
  16. Shakespeare
  17. Faith
  18. Literature
  19. Readers
  20. Kindergarten
  21. Children of the World
  22. Christmas Stories

You can view the entire catalog by author – click

by title

by subject

 

When you purchase EPUB or Kindle format you have immediate access.  So much quicker than browsing the aisles at Books-a-Million, or some such bookish store, making a selection or two or ten; lugging everything to the car, and then, still having to rearrange everything on the shelves to find room for your newest favorite collection.

 

There are instructions here for downloading files to EPUB or Kindle, and then you can choose which format you’d like to sample for free.

Questions or comments?

You can contact

Lisa M. Ripperton

Yesterday’s Classics

P.O. Box 3418

Chapel Hill, NC  27515

or call

919.357.8824

 

or emailLisa@MainLesson.com

 

You can read other reviews, written by my crew mates at http://homeschoolblogger.com/homeschoolcrew/783960/

 

Blessings,

 

 

This product was given to me, free of charge, in exchange, for my honest review, as a member of the TOS Homeschool Crew. I receive no other compensation for my reviews on this blog.  The opinions expressed are my own.

Thank you for your comments…

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Categories : Books, homeschool, reviews, TOS
Comments (3)
Apr
20

10 Strawberries!

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I was born in the city, but while I was still in elementary school, just the thought of me in the local middle school had my mother moving our family to the country.  My birth certificate may say city, but my heart is pure country.

We got most of our vegetables from our own garden and often raised our own beef.  I know for a fact that we were poor, but I didn’t know it then.  I don’t ever remember being hungry.  We were well fed and well loved.

I should clarify though, that my mother’s version of well fed and mine are… different.

For instance, Ma didn’t like broccoli; so, we didn’t grow it and we didn’t eat it.  I seem to recall that we tried brussel sprouts one year – one time and not again.  Did you know, that based on research, if a food is served/eaten 10 times in a row – not just once – a child is more likely to develop a taste for it?  For dinner we ate a lot of home canned green beans, potatoes, tomatoes and corn, single or combo, beside a meat entree, with bread & butter as a filler.  Ma was a good cook.  The general thought was to make sure we had a decent start to our day, for school, and that we did not go to bed hungry.  I honestly don’t think she gave much consideration to balance, variety, color or even what our bodies might actually need to grow.

I, on the other hand, really like broccoli, and so do most of my children.  I remember reading a book by Raymond and Dorothy Moore, more than 15 years ago, that taught me, and therefore my family, that the largest meal of the day should be breakfast, followed by a medium lunch and a light dinner, giving everything plenty of time to digest over night.  My older children still remember getting up r.e.a.l.l.y. early, every day,  to eat a humongous breakfast, that took me hours to prepare.  Since we didn’t maintain it all of these years, my younger children have only heard stories, and occasionally seen hints of what I actually think is the best way to eat.  Over the years, I have researched and read many books looking for the best for my family.  Especially since my mother died nearly eight years ago from colon cancer.  I’ve learned much, consistently implemented some and passed on everything I could to my children, hoping they’ll do even better for theirs.  Proverbs 22:6, “Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old, he will not depart from it.”

I have not found anything like  Growing Healthy Homes – Nutrition 101:  Choose Life!

448 pages, 6 units of study divided into 4 chapters each and thoroughly covering anatomy & physiology, nutritional health and home economics.

  1. The Brain and Nervous System
  2. Digestion and Elimination
  3. Respiration and Olfactory
  4. Muscular and Skeletal Systems
  5. Cardiovascular and Immune Systems
  6. Endocrine System and Emotions

 

This is a Biblically based curriculum that explains the systems of our God-created bodies and the foods that are needed to assist them in their jobs.  The fact is:  our body is affected by what we eat. The authors remind us of a verse from III John, chapter 2, “Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in all things and be in health, just as your soul prospers.”  It is their desire “to honor God by creating and distributing products that educate and empower His children to establish healthy, Christ-centered homes.”  Apart from creating and distributing products, their mission clearly mirrors mine for my family.

The amount of information that has been compiled in this book is unbelievable!  It can easily be used for the entire family, youngest child to adult; including high school credit.  There are activities, science projects, art projects, vocabulary, fun facts and at least 75 recipes.  Additional book suggestions, resources and discussion questions are listed at the end of each chapter and you’ll find 100 pages of charts, checklists and more.  The authors, homeschool mother Debra Raybern, N.D., M.H., C.N.C., I.C.A.; homeschool mother and researcher Sera Johnson, B.MU; mother and writer/editor Laura Hopkins, B.S.; and mother, grandmother and former Home Economics teacher Karen Hopkins, B.S., are gracious, wise and encouraging.

 

Click on the veggie picture to view a pdf Sample of Nutrition 101


The over-size, hard-bound, vibrantly colored book is beautiful!  (Yes, I love books, but, seriously, this one makes me feel rich just holding it in my hands.  And it takes both hands to hold it because it is big!)  It is $99.95.  There is a CD-Rom available for $79.95, but my favorite option is also the best value, the combo of both for $129.95.  I like having the book in my hands, and the flexibility to print the recipes and activities, with ease, from the download.  And… I get to offer you, my reader, a 15 % discount when you use coupon code TOScrew11 at checkout.

Growing Healthy Homes has other products you may be interested in:

Gentle Babies:  Essential Oils and Natural Remedies

Is There a Dr. Mom in Your House

The Raw Food Feast:  7 Days Through the Rainbow

 

Click Growing Healthy Homes logo, below, to follow their facebook page


Contact:

Address –

P.O. Box 3154

Bartlesville, OK  74006

Telephone –

918.841.2934

903.466.1564 (E. Texas)

832.298.1242 (S. Texas)

 

Growing  Healthy Homes – Nutrition 101:  Choosing Life! earns a 10 out of 10 Strawberries from our family.  We received the download and we have not completed it, yet.  Instead of printing and putting it into a large, cumbersome notebook, I am printing one unit at a time and putting each in a small, titled notebook.  I like it! and I have no doubt we will use it for years.

 

As always, you can find additional reviews, by my crew members, when you click on the TOS banner below.


Blessings,

 

This product was given to me, free of charge, in exchange, for my honest review, as a member of the TOS Homeschool Crew. I receive no other compensation for my reviews on this blog.  The opinions expressed are my own.

 


 

 

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Feb
18

Creating an Eager Reader

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*Reluctant – not eager; unwilling; disinclined

*Reader – one that reads

*Solution – the answer to or disposition of a problem

There are nearly 400,000 books published each year in the United States and the United Kingdom, combined.  I love to read.  I want my children to want to read.  I want them to wonder what is written between the covers of some of those books; I want them to pick one up themselves and discover, on their own, whether or not it is something they’re interested in reading.  Kid Scoop is the answer for the disinclined, less than eager and occasionally, downright unwilling reader.

Kid Scoop:  Reluctant Reader Solution is designed to “spark your child’s own interest in reading.”  There are two parts to the Solution:

  1. 12 full-color issues of Kid Scoop News online magazine and
  2. 365 PDF formatted worksheets

Online correlates with the printed pages and keeps the child interested.  Simply, the more a child practices reading, the better they get at it and the more they want to do it.  Vicki Whiting, the creator of Kid Scoop has put together text and activities that have kid-appeal!

Each issue of Kid Scoop News has:

  • games
  • puzzles
  • experiments
  • pictures
  • news-worthy kid profiles
  • relating to –
  • current events
  • the natural world and
  • holiday observances

Then, print a page-a-day, every-day, worksheet that corresponds and reinforces the content.  Topics include:

  • Valentine Fitness
  • Bigfoot
  • Easter
  • Wangari Maathai
  • Orcas
  • Memorial Day
  • Constitution Day
  • Bubble Gum
  • Kitchen Creativity and
  • Clay Play

These were great car activities.  I knew we were still on task, and they just enjoyed having something fun to occupy their time.

Reluctant Reader Solution is “guaranteed to improve your child’s reading ability.”  It has been proven time and again and Kid Scoop stands behind it with a risk-free, 365-day Unconditional Money-Back Guarantee. Less than 40 cents a day.  $97 for one year.

Kid Scoop also has an engaging website for kids and an email newsletter for parents.   Sign up for the newsletter and in the first 30 days you’ll get 30 whiz-bang exercises and ideas to make reading and learning a blast!

[1 of 30 Days] Pack Up For Adventure

Pretend you have been asked to go on an adventure.  Your mission is to explore a new place and you will be away for a month.  Look through the newspaper for things you would like to take with you.  Make a list of the things you will pack – they must all be found in the newspaper!


Check in with my TOS Crew Mates for additional reviews of Kid Scoop:  Reluctant Reader Solution.

Contact Kid Scoop~

email:  thescoop@kidscoop.com

telephone:  707.996.6077

Kid Scoop

P.O. Box 1802

Sonoma, CA  95476

Facebook Page

I was given Reluctant Reader Solution to use and review.  In a short time, my child has gone from reluctant reader to eager reader, and I’m betting we’ll reach enthusiastic before the year is over!

Blessings,

This product was given to me, free of charge, in exchange, for my honest review, as a member of the TOS Homeschool Crew. I receive no other compensation for my reviews on this blog.  The opinions expressed are my own.

I value the gift of your comment.  Thank you.

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Jan
26

Do you understand?

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The Holman Illustrated Bible Dictionary for Kids is meant as a guide to perceive the meaning of; grasp the idea of; comprehend, and generally, make understanding the Bible easier AND that’s exactly what it does.

This is a stunning, 209 pages plus, hard cover book!  750 Bible words.

-Definitions and pronunciation guides for those words that you find yourself mumbling or stumbling over, because you’re not quite sure how to say them.  Like these entries:

  • “Gennesaret, Sea of (gih NESS uh ret) Also known as Sea of Galilee or Sea of Tiberias.  Jesus calmed a storm on this lake, and with Jesus’ help, Peter walked on water on this lake.  Luke 5:1”  and
  • “World – 1.) Planet Earth.  2.) In the Bible world often means the people who live on Planet Earth.  In John 3:16, Jesus said, “God loved the world in this way:  He gave His One and Only Son,” to all the humans in the world.  3.) The Bible also uses world to describe evil and people who do not know Jesus as Savior and choose to do wrong.  Nehemiah 9:6; Colossians 2:20.”

-Charts and illustrations.  Among many, you’ll find:

Insects of the Bible

  • Birds in the Bible;
  • Food in Bible Times, and
  • Names of God, with the reference, meaning and English name

Elohim ~ Genesis 1:1 ~ Powerful God ~ God

Jehovah Jireh ~ Genesis 22:14 ~ The Lord provides ~ The Lord will provide

Yahweh ~ Exodus 3:14 ~ Israel’s Covenant God ~ I AM

and more.

-500 vibrant, color photographs, from the likes of Israel Museum, Jerusalem; Joseph A Calloway Archaeological Museum, Kentucky; Museum of Fine Arts, Boston and Biblical Illustrator photographers – Bob Schatz, Ken Touchton; even NASA.

Moses leads the Israelites across the Red Sea on dry ground.

-Numerous maps and reconstructions reinforcing that “Bible stories are true and happened in real places.”

Reconstruction of the City of Corinth

Map of Egypt: Land of The Nile

Holman Illustrated Bible Dictionary for Kids is kid-friendly without compromise.  I reference the Ten Commandments, Exodus 20:1-17.  In this dictionary, they are worded in a way that a child can understand without changing God’s meaning.

  1. Do not have other gods besides the One True God.
  2. Do not make an idol to worship.
  3. Do not misuse the name of the Lord your God.
  4. Keep the sabbath day holy.
  5. Honor your father and your mother.
  6. Do not murder.
  7. Keep your marriage promises.
  8. Do not steal.
  9. Do not lie.
  10. Do not want things that belong to someone else.

And… I can put off having to explain the nitty-gritty of adultery and coveting your neighbors anything, until they’re older.

B and H Publishing has a PDF sampler of this book you can download.

This is an outstanding resource for $14.99.  I was blessed that LifeWay Christian Stores gave me a copy for this review.  “LifeWay Christian Resources of the Southern Baptist Convention is one of the world’s largest providers of Christian products and services…”  Holman Illustrated Bible Dictionary for Kids is available at LifeWay Christian Stores, your local bookstore, online and through the publisher.

Making the language of the Bible more accessible and understandable to young hearts and minds is a worthy investment, with the possibility of eternal dividends.  Compiled with ages 5 – 10 in mind, I found it beneficial for all ages.

Shop online or

Find a LifeWay Christian Store near you.

www.LifeWayStores.com

phone:  1.800.448.8032

Click the TOS banner below for additional reviews of Holman Illustrated Bible Dictionary for Kids.

Blessings,

This product was given to me, free of charge, in exchange, for my honest review, as a member of the TOS Homeschool Crew. I receive no other compensation for my reviews on this blog.  The opinions expressed are my own.

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Jan
07

See, Focus, and Remember

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See-N-Read Reading Tools are created by CadenaSmith Enterprises.  They have been thoroughly researched and tested.  The purpose of the tools are to help a reader – See, Focus, and Remember.

Simply:  if you can see, more clearly, what you are reading, you can better focus on the content and are more likely to achieve greater comprehension and retention of the material.

The regular See-N-Read tool is lightweight, flexible and easy to use.  It is blue grey with a clear solid read bar.  It’s available in two sizes:  3 1/2″x5″ book size (perfect for the Bible) and 3 1/2″x8 1/2″ document size (or a favorite for large children’s books.)

MemoryMark, is See-N-Read PLUS.  It’s also my favorite.  Same lightweight, flexible construction, but it has a cut-out read bar.  I can write notes, underline in a straight line (without keeping a little, flat, metal ruler in the back of the book I’m currently studying) AND highlight (in any of the cool new colors that aren’t yesterday’s yellow.)  We also found Memory Mark useful for math problems.  Flip it vertically to align columns and hold place values.

The one and only problem I found with this product is that I don’t have one for everyone.  Too many of us and not enough of them!  This can be easily rectified, though, because the price is reasonable.  Just $2.99 for a single, book size.

The eSee-N-Read is See-N-Read gone electronic for your PC.  The same feature of focusing on a line of text, but on your computer, controlled by your mouse.  “You can change orientation, size or shape of the tool and/or ReadBar™ to highlight specific text, data or images.”   You can have more than one open at a time and it reduces screen glare.

$29.99 for a download to be used on a single computer.  Additional prices are available for multi-packs of the See-N-Read or MemoryMark tools and also for the eSee-N-Read downloaded to 3 or more computers.

info@see-n-read.com

order ~ http://www.see-n-read.com/store/index.html

contact ~ http://www.see-n-read.com/contact.html

2533 Sutton Lane

Aurora, IL  60502-9461

Phone:  1-630-236-5592

more reviews ~ http://homeschoolblogger.com/homeschoolcrew/783605

Let me know if you like these tools as much as we do.

Blessings,

This product was given to me, free of charge, in exchange, for my honest review, as a member of the TOS Homeschool Crew. I receive no other compensation for my reviews on this blog.  The opinions expressed are my own.


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Nov
22

My First Bright Idea

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One would think, that having homeschooled my children for as many years as I have I would have already met Bright Ideas Press, but the truth is that our acquaintance is quite new.

As a member of The Old Schoolhouse homeschool crew, I was recently given the opportunity to use and review A Young Scholar’s Guide to Composers, written by Melissa E. Craig and Maggie S. Hogan, and published by Bright Ideas Press.

This is set up as a full year’s curriculum in 32 lessons.  It is likely, we will stretch it into 2 year’s.  Our house is a Kindergarten-to adult house.  We are using A Young Scholar’s Guide to Composers at a more relaxed pace, because we are using it as a family course and including everyone.  This tends to lead to longer discussions about each composer, his life and music.  It is designed for 4th through 8th grades, but all of us have learned something and want to continue this study.

…Composers, begins with ancient music, moves through the Middle Ages and The Renaissance, then flows into Classical and Modern music.  The authors cover composers and their music from The Baroque Period, The Classical Period, The Romantic Period and The Contemporary Period.  26 biographies in all, including the life and times of each composer, from a Christian perspective, as well as appreciation of their music.

There is nearly no teacher prep time and, since I never seem to have enough time in a day, I appreciate the thoroughness of the authors.  The only thing not included to complete this study, is the music, but Craig and Hogan have compiled a section of Listening Suggestions with YouTube links that correlate with each composer.  Our local library offered many of the suggested selections, too.

You can view sample pages before you decide to purchase this curriculum.  I can recommend this investment.  $29.95 for the book on CD-Rom or $34.95 for a 298 page paperback.  I chose the paperback.  I still favor holding a real book in my hands.  I did take my nicely bound book to a local printer and had it gently taken apart, and hole-punched.  Personally, I would still choose the paperback over the CD-Rom, but I found it inconvenient to copy the student pages from the bound book.  I now have easy access, from a three-ring binder, to the note taking and student review pages, time lines & maps, games and detailed coloring sheets.

If you’re still not convinced to look at this curriculum, consider this –

Why even teach an appreciation of Classical music in this age?  The website lists these reasons:

  • Music is from the Lord. He created it, and He created us with the ability to both make and appreciate music.
  • Classical music is uniquely part of our Western civilization.
  • Research suggests that both listening to and playing classical music aids brain development.
  • Even rudimentary exposure increases one’s level of enjoyment and understanding.

Bright Ideas Press is also the publisher of Illuminations, The Mystery of History (World) volumes 1-3, All American History volumes 1&2, and Christian Kids Explore (Chemistry, Physics, Earth & Space; Biology); Hands-on Geography.  These are covered in review by my TOS crew mates.

Contact:                                                          

Bright Ideas Press

P.O. Box 333

Cheswold, DE  19936

1-877-492-8081

or

brightideaspress.com

Blessings,

This product was given to me, free of charge, in exchange, for my honest review, as a member of the TOS Homeschool crew.  I receive no other compensation for my reviews on this blog.  The opinions expressed are my own.


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