Sunday, November 30, 2014

Remembering Thanksgiving

 Hard to believe November will be over tomorrow. It has been a great month, especially this past week; it has been full of fun, food, and family. Like most, we spent our Thanksgiving with family; something that I am always thankful for. Besides the typical turkey, dressing, and tons of yummy desserts, I found myself sharing my homeschooling knowledge with one of my cousin’s. Apparently, she has been considering homeschooling her son, and wanted me to suggest a third grade homeschool curriculum for her.  To be honest, I was surprised by her interest in homeschooling. She had always seemed to favor the public school systems, but I guess something changed her mind. Regardless why, I am just happy that I could help her. I know how being new to homeschooling can be stressful and a bit scary and how having someone who can help walk you through, can make things so much easier.   So, if you are thinking about homeschooling and have a question, please ask another homeschooler you know, or just ask me ;)

Until Next Time…

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Halloween Is In The Home-School Air!

In just a couple of weeks, it will be Halloween. My kids are super excited, as I am sure yours are too. As a rule I always make my kids wait until at least the 2nd week into October, before they let me know what they want to be. In the past, I have had those "I've changed my mind!" moments, only after I have bought &/or made their costumes. For me, it is usually make them or some part of them, as my kids ALWAYS seem to want to be something I either can not find, or it is too expensive to buy. Over the years my kids have been ware wolfs, aliens, zombie bride, mummy, vampire, etc., etc. The hardest to create I think was the mummy. Having to stitch strips of cloth to black leggings was not fun. Of course the smiles on their faces is always so worth it ;)

In homeschooling news, we have been having some spooky fun this past couple of weeks. Besides adding some Halloween themed worksheets to our elementary online curriculum, we have also been doing fun crafts too!  Below are two of the crafts that we have made this year.

The toilet paper roll craft is really simple and fun. All you need is a clean toilet paper roll, paper, scissors, glue/tape, pencil, pen, &/or crayons, and  of course googly eyes are optional. 

All you need to make this crafts is paper, but if you have card stock that will work better. A hole puncher, scissors, plain or decorative, either will work. Pipe cleaners, but yarn or string can work too. and a pencil and ruler. 

To create these pumpkins you will be using your ruler and pencil to make equal sections to cut.  Once your paper is cut, you will use your hole puncher to make a hole in each end of your strips. Then all you need to do is use your pipe cleaner, yarn, &/or string by threading it through one end and then again through the other. You can use another pipe cleaner, yarn &/or string to make a stem at the top.
And there is your Paper Pumpkin!

                                                                Until Next Time...

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Fall Has Arrived!

It’s official! Fall has arrived! Hard to believe that summer is already over. The kids and I are finally settled into our typical school day routine.

  • Wake-up
  • Brush Teeth,  etc.
  • Breakfast
  • Morning Chores
  • Play Time
  • Lunch
  • School Time
  • TV Time
  • Dinner
  • Evening Chores
  • Bed Time routine
  • Bed Time

 Yes, you read correctly, are school day does not usually start until after lunch. For some, this may seem like a crazy concept, but when the kids were younger I tried the whole get up and start right after breakfast. It was just too hard to get us all motivated. The kids do better once they are able to play some first and I do better when I can unwind from the morning chaos. Of course, depending on the day, this may vary, but all in all this our day.

Speaking of school time, I am so excited that fall is here. It is my favorite time of year. The weather is so nice and I love all of the colors. Plus, it is the time for Halloween and Thanksgiving! Which means fun themed things I get to add to our regular homeschool curriculum :)

~>Whether you are teaching pre, kinder, first, second, third, fourth, or even fifth grade homeschool curriculum, or heck! Even the older grades, there are tons of websites, some even free, that offer fall themed resources. To find them, just do a simple internet search ;)

Until Next Time…

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

A Review of Time4Writing

In my last post, I shared what we will be using again this school year. In that list was an online program called Time4Writing! This is a new addition to our regular lineup, as we have just started to use this program, this past summer. So, for those of you who are looking for a new writing program, or have been thinking about giving T4W a try, here is what my oldest and I thought about them.

                                               Review of Time4Writing

Time4Writing offers elementary, middle, and high-school courses led by a certified teacher. Each course cost $99 and they are 8 weeks long. You do have the option to get a free one week extension if you need more time, but beyond that, you will have to pay for any additional time. So, it is really important to stay on a schedule (Courses can be put on hold if needed when requested in advance.) Time4Writing also offers a 100% satisfaction guarantee. If for some reason their learning program does not satisfy your family’s needs, you can either select another course, or cancel your membership during the first 14 days. Which in my opinion says a lot about the company ;)

Before you child even starts, T4W offers a free course placement testing. This really helps you to figure out where your child should start. 
After my daughter took the placement test, we decided to start her off with the Middle School Mechanics course.  

My daughter and I really liked how the site was laid out. It made it easy for both of us to navigate. My daughter and I also really liked how quickly and to the point each lesson was. It explained things short and sweet. So, if your child needs a lot of extra practice, be prepared to create or print your own extra seat-work. For us, there was only one time where she needed some extra reinforcements. For the most part, my daughter was able to understand and learn the material easily and did not need any additional help. One other feature I liked was that you could print out all of the lesson notes from the course. This was great because my daughter was able to create a study binder with them. In the future, I am sure she will look back at her binder, if she ever needs to refresh her memory.

We also both like how there was a certified teacher as part of the course. She was able to ask her teacher questions, if needed, and me too. However, there was one area that I loved and hated. Depending on the lesson, there will be times where your child will receive feed -back on their assignments, from the teacher. I loved the fact that my daughter was getting one on one attention with her work and getting personal response from her teacher, but since they only respond M-F, we would be stuck waiting over the weekend at times to be able to move on because T4W will not let you move ahead. (Sometimes we home-school on Saturdays. So, unless you are like us, this probably won’t be an issue for you. ) 

At the end, your child is awarded a certificate of achievement that you can print out with their name on it. This was a very nice surprise! All in all, I was pleased with this course from Time4Writing. We will definitely be using them again in the future.

Until Next Time…

DISCLOSURE: As a marketing representative for Time4Learning and Time4Writing, I was compensated for this review, but my compensation in no way alters the opinions in this review and all opinions herein are my own.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

It's Back To Home-School Time!

August is officially in full swing, which means most of us are busy, busy, busy starting our brand new homeschool year. However, there are some of us who are still busy, busy, busy figuring out what curriculum to use. Luckily, I found our core curriculum years ago (my oldest was in first grade when she started with T4L and my youngest has used their Pre-K & kindergarten online curriculum as well so far). The program is called Time4LearningSo, for those of you who are still scratching your heads, weeding through all of the endless options trying to figure out what to try this year, here is what we will be using in our homeschool this year. I hope it may help give you some ideas ;)

~For my youngest (age 7 years): We will be using as his core curriculum. In addition to T4L, we will be using Science4us for Science and the Story of the World Series for history. Plus, tons of worksheets, crafts, learning games online and off, flash cards, and of course plenty of books for reading. We will also be going on several field trips and doing a few Unit Studies throughout the year (I sometimes put them together myself, but I also buy them too. is a great site and I love Currclick too).

~For my oldest (age 12 years): We will be using as her core curriculum. In addition to T4L, we will be using Time4Art for art, Time4Writing for writing, SpellingCity for spelling, and the Story of the World Series for history. Plus, tons of worksheets, crafts, learning games online and off, and of course plenty of books for reading. We will also be going on several field trips and doing a few Unit Studies throughout the year.

I also like to keep my kids in at least one type of extracurricular activity. Last year my oldest opted to join a bowling league. This year she will be joining a league again, as well as her little brother.

Until Next Time…

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

So, Whats Been Going On?!

As you can tell, I have not been writing every week as I usually do. I am very sorry to my regular readers, but I have been taking more time this past month to spend time traveling with my family.
I love to travel! I know that I have mentioned in past posts that I also roadschool, from time to time.
For those who are unfamiliar with the term "roadschool" let me explain. Roadschooling is simply homeschooling while on the road. It could be for the day, the weekend, the week or even full- time. No matter how long or how short your road trips may be, if you are learning while traveling, you are roadschooling ;)
So, since I will be spending more time with my family and traveling more from time to time, my blog entry's will be fewer, but I promise to continue to post at least once a month :)
So, what else has been going on? Well, we had our children's year-end homeschool evaluations.
(In our state we have the option to have a certified teacher evaluate or child's progress verses state testing) Our daughter, is doing very well. Officially, she is in sixth grade, but in reading, writing,  and science she has excelled beyond and is in seventh. Wow! hard to believe I will be using sixth and seventh grade homeschool curriculum this year?!
Another special thing that took place during this evaluation, was that it was my son's first. He was so excited to show the teacher samples of his work. He is now officially in the first grade!!!
                                            I am so very proud of my children :)

                                                          Until Next Time...

Friday, July 4, 2014

The Food Chain

I hope everyone is having a wonderful 4th of July. If your kids are anything like mine, then they have been eagerly waiting for Fireworks. It is so nice that with so many modern devices kids have today, that our kids can still be fascinated by the bright lights up in the sky ;)

In homeschooling news, we have been busy learning about the food chains. With my oldest, we have already went over this, but not with my youngest. I think children figure out to a point on their own that there is a pecking order to how animals live, eat, and survive. For example, lion's eat the zebra, but when the lion dies, it helps grow the grass that the zebra eats. So, it isn't cruel or mean that the lion eats the zebra, its just part of the cycle of life.

 Since there are so many scenarios, depending on what animals you are talking about, I let the kids create as many food chain scenarios as they could think of. I was surprised how many they were able to come up with.

Here are some food chain illustrations that you could show your children below.

Until Next Time...