Monkeys are so cute and fun to watch. We especially like videos and movies with monkeys and stuffed animal monkeys. I've always wanted to try making a homemade sock monkey. I think I have a pattern around here somewhere. Maybe that would be a good holiday gift idea for this next year! (I'd better get started soon if I'm going to make one for each of our six children!) It would be cute to applique a monkey and make a lap quilt too... The children have talked about getting one (or several) of those little bitty, tiny monkeys. I don't know if I'd like having real ones around though. I'm not sure how well they'd do in our climate. We'd probably need to keep them in the greenhouse.
Knowing my luck, we'd end up with one like Curios George, getting into things all the time! No, I think we've got a nice selection of critters in our menagerie for now. We do enjoy books with great pictures though. Here are two fun ones plus two sticker books. We love sticker books! Which would you rather have? A real monkey or a monkey sticker book?
In typical Apologia Educational Ministries fashion, the program is laid out in "Modules". There are 6 units and 24 modules. Each unit has an author spotlight. All of the authors except one write Christian content and we were happy to find that we were familiar with several of them. Each module has 12-16 points from study, instruction & brainstorming to vocabulary, grammar & interesting composition. By the end of this book I think our #3 Princess will have a good start on a nice little autobiographical book. I really love the way Debra Bell, PhD has done Writers in Residence! (This is very much how I write...) The writing assignments are all in cycles of:
While the program is written for 4th grade and up, this is just right for our 14 year old. It's very simple for her but not written down to the student, which is really nice for Delayed Academics Educational Approach or special needs students. If you have a very academically inclined 4th grader, they will probably thrive with this too. I will likely have our 9 year old Princess do this program next, though I'm sure I'll need to spend more time going through it with her where the 14 year old is doing Writers in Residence independently.
I definitely think this is a wonderful program that nearly any family could enjoy using.
If you're using a true Trivium or Classical education technique, you won't want to purchase these as a set. The suggested grade level is definitely flexible though, so you could easily pick & choose guides for books that will fit the time frame you're studying.
The student books are workbooks to be used with one student. I have a few children who prefer filling out workbooks, so it's really nice for them. Each chapter has two facing pages so they can fill out, which is really nice. It's all right there at a glance for teacher and student. The teacher's book pages are laid out exactly the same as the student book except with answers and a table of contents. Each lesson includes:
Since the purpose of this review is the and not the books themselves, it's presented a challenge for me in sharing with you about each of the guides we used. I share some of the highlights from each:
If your family is lacking a strong Biblical foundation, I strongly suggest supplementing with Bible-based guides too. There are many great ones available. Or spend a year really studying through the Bible before using these guides. All study of fiction should be carefully balanced with God's Truth. HE offers amazing insight into things like Tolkien's imaginative works and the Trojan's classic, polytheistic society.
All in all, I'll probably buy more of these to go with some of the great classic literature I regularly read with our family. I'm grateful for the opportunity to review this Seventh Grade Literature Guide Set with our family.
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Who doesn't like a good mystery? Admittedly I do get tired of murder mysteries. When we had SkyAngelTV satalite, I got very tired of all day Sunday 'Murder She Wrote', 'Diagnosis Murder', and the like... I love Angela Landsbury & Dick Van Dyke, but wow...
Today I'm sharing a nice variety for the family. Yes, some are murder mysteries, but not all of them. Children are bound to enjoy the 'Mugged Pug' or 'Strawberry Thief'. The older children may enjoy some forensic science or good ol' Cowboys chasing Outlaws though. Studying mysteries really helps develop critical thinking skills. Who knows, maybe they'll start exploring some of the mysteries in your home, like The Case of the Missing... (you can insert almost anything here, including Mom's glasses or coffee cup on any particular day!)
Books about the Pinkerton National Detective Agency
Last week's favorites:
It has a word list and poetic story for each lesson. The children enjoyed reading through the list and thought the stories were really funny. It also has cute pictures for each story. I personally prefer the children to read Bible and Biographical texts instead of nonsense, but it was a fun change.
My favorite thing about this program is the color coding. The three levels have their own color in the HUGE teacher's manual. That helped me so much. Like I've said before, I dislike reading instructions and usually try to skip that step. When I first saw this teacher's manual, I felt like hiding. When I say HUGE, I mean HUGE! Yep, it's big. It is actually interesting though. Like I said, it's color coded, which totally appeals to me. I color code everything, even the towels in the bathroom. There are boxes on the side with tips, notes & ideas. The lessons have all kinds of fun steps for teaching the phonograms and parts of speech. I also love that it teaches the Latin roots and meanings for the suffixes & prefixes. (...Did I remember to tell you it's color coded and HUGE?)
Our 9 year old (Littlest Princess) was very excited about this program. We don't do many workbooks or flash cards and my little nerds can get excited about such things sometimes. I expected it to wear off after a while, but it didn't. She has genuinely enjoyed working through the various aspects of Logic of English's phonics. An additional fun thing I found is a YouTube channel with lessons for the children and workshops for teachers. AWESOME! In addition to Essentials 2nd Edition they also have several Foundations programs for younger children that look fun.
There are 15 five day lessons making this only a 75 day program. I took more time since I was working with both our Littlest Princess and the 13 year old boy. I wanted to evaluate both of them as I went. Our 13 year old has struggled with phonics and reading, much like I did at his age. I was delighted that his reading skills are better than what I thought and he was kinda bored with the preliminary stuff. Once we got into the spelling though, he started to enjoy it more. (If a boy can enjoy 'school'...) I've definitely seen improvement in both of them. I think some of the lessons were even good for the older two to help them with, like the parts of speech. It definitely reinforced some things.
I hate to give up the whole video. Everyone should watch it. The panel of professionals in this documentary is awesome. The documentation is irrefutable. You can look it all up yourself. I'll just list an outline of what is included.
Collectivism vs. Individualism = Ideological War
Islam does not believe in women's rights, freedom of speech, homosexuality... Yet our establishment is importing Muslim 'refugees' at an alarming rate. Why? The government really doesn't care more about them than about the rights of our own citizens. The idea is to allow terrorism to scare people into letting communism take over.
The truly interesting information in the FishFlix.com Christian Movie, Agenda 2 Masters of Deceit, was about the Communist Council of Churches undermining Christianity itself with watered down doctrine...
Then there are the Labor Unions. Communism is dictating the policies of the Democratic Party which controls the unions. Their goal is to destroy the United States of America and usher us into the One World government.
Solutions. It would do no good to unveil all the bad agenda and give no hope for the future. Things are indeed bleak, but there is always hope. The answers are:
Come home to God and you will find America. ~ Alan Keyes
You can also follow FishFlix.com on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter & Pinterest. ...AND make sure to check out the link below. The Schoolhouse Review Crew had the opportunity to review several DIFFERENT Christian Movies with FishFlix.com. This is a great time to check out several options for family night!
The Video Lessons – This is really nice if you away from home a lot. We are able to access these with our smart phone as long as we have service available. We usually keep all our dvds in a particular place but no matter how organized I try to be in our home, it always seems like someone is misplacing things and can't find their lesson dvd. This solves the problem. As long as we have internet or cell service, we can access the math lessons.
Online Drills – This is a simple yet fun way for the children to practice facts. You can choose very specifically based on the lesson your child is on or is struggling with or you can pick a whole range of facts for them to practice. My children have had fun selecting the whole thing and taking turns (or competing) answering the problems.
Worksheet Creator – This is pretty awesome. You pick the level from Alpha through Pre-Algebra and the specific lesson to create a worksheet for extra practice. You can also create the answer key, Cool!
We're reviewing the Algebra 1 level but with the digital pack so much more is available. These are the pdf's available:
As I've said before, I dislike digital products, unless it's lapbook/scrapbook type stuff. I like paper & our family is artistic and kinesthetic, so ebooks and printables are not our favorite thing. After thoroughly going over the digital pack subscription, I would personally still prefer to buy the book and dvd instead. I have the teacher's books & dvd's for years to use with the other children. It wouldn't be economical for me to buy a digital subscription for each child each year. It would also be inconvenient for me or my children to have to get online in order to access the information.
If you only have one or two children and use tablets or computers for their schooling on a daily basis, you might really like this option. Demme Learning has done a wonderful job in making this very usable with tons of extras.
Some of the other levels also include Digital Manipulatives. If you have a iPad, you can purchase that app. The demo looks really neat. I almost wish we had an iPad so I could purchase it. Hopefully they'll eventually have it available for android too.
You can also follow Demme Learning & Math-U-See on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, & YouTube.
Favorites from last week:
I should have known better! Simple Bible study is the best cure for any difficulty. I absolutely LOVE that the teacher's book stresses prayer and adult Bible study as preparation for each lesson. So very important!
My biggest problem though is that I really just do NOT like digital things. Lapbooks are nice because they have printable pieces that we color, cut, paste, & put together in folders. (Very much like pieces of a puzzle as well... or even better, like a quilt!) Otherwise, I prefer real paper books over ebooks and real paper activity books for the children that we can date and keep for records. I have a real need to highlight and make notes in the margins of my books. That being said, GrapeVine Studies are all available in paper book form with room for note-taking. (Yay!)
First, you MUST have the Teacher's Book. It is absolutely the key to unlocking these Bible studies. You could do it without the student books or printables, but you'd be lost without the teacher's book. It contains:
The Student & Traceable Books are great for preschool, Sabbath class, or special needs students. There is a traceable student booklet and a booklet with blank areas for the children to draw their own depending on the needs or level of each child. They include:
As a Messianic Believer I found nothing in The Resurrection study that my fellow Hebrew Roots or Sabbath Keepers would have any problems with. These are simple Bible Studies that work directly with the Scriptures and aren't trying to push any particular denominational doctrines. This is perfect for the spring Feasts of the LORD.
You can also follow GrapeVine Studies on Facebook, Twitter & Pinterest.
This epic tale is set during the war between the Vikings and the Saxons in the middle ages. The Dragon and The Raven are both ships. The Dragon is a Saxon ship and The Raven is a Viking ship. The battles are intense, the characters are very real, and the story is sprinkled with bits of humor to lighten things up. The children and I were on the edge of our seats. Our 13 year old son's favorite part was the sinking of The Raven. The 16 year old liked the king burning cakes and how upset the pig herder's wife handled it. I loved how the Christian Saxons showed and shared their faith, eventually bringing some of the Vikings to the Lord. The sounds, music, and familiar voices brought this awesome historical telling to life in a way I know our children will remember. (In our opionion, John Ryhs-Davies voice makes everything more awesome! He is definitely one of our favorite actors, both voice and on screen.)
G. A. Henty was a 19th century war correspondent. He wrote 122 works of Historical Fiction. His adventure stories are known classics in the Homeschool circles. The books are full of exceptional role models, old fashioned values, and basic Christian worldview.
I had the boys get their legos out to play with while we listened. They didn't get a thing built though because they were so enthralled in the story.
This audio comes in a nice two cd set with a beautiful cover. When you order, there are several great options with neat bonus materials:
Visit Heirloom Audio Productions website to view the video trailer for The Dragon and the Raven and make sure to follow them on Instagram, Google Plus, Facebook, & Twitter...