8/27/2014

Resources
















I am always looking for resources to use in my homeschool. I have found several free printables for the curriculum I am using. One thing I have not found is the phonics charts for special sounds for Abeka. I decided to just make some plain black and white printable phonics charts to help others.

Click here (or the pinnable image) for the phonics chart printable.

Some other Abeka resources I found are:

Blend Ladders

Addition Flashcards

Alphabet Flashcards

Number Concept Cards

ABC Bible Memory Verses

8/26/2014

UberSmart Software ~ Review

UberSmart Math Facts

My eight year old daughter has struggled with math from the beginning. I always like to try new things with her to help her become better at math. I was given the opportunity to review UberSmart Math Facts with her.

What is UberSmart Math Facts?

UberSmart Software was developed by David Kocur, a homeschool dad. UberSmart Math Facts is a Windows based downloadable software. The program teaches addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division. The program is designed to be used with children in grades K – 6, but can be used by any child that needs help with math facts. There is also a beginning level that uses dot cards.

UberSmart Math Facts is available (as a download) for $24.95. It only works on Windows 7, 8, XP, and Vista. A 30 day trial and free worksheets are also available.

ubersmart

There are six sections when UberSmart is open- learn, practice, test, compete, report, and maintain.

Learn: This tab allows the child to learn the math facts. You are able to choose between dot cards and regular flash cards. They can be learned in order or shuffled.

Practice: This tab allows the child to practice what they have learned. Again, you are able to choose between dot cards, keyboard entry, and flash cards. Keyboard entry is practicing typing numbers onto the cards (see picture below).

keyboard

Test: There is an assessment test for beginners or a mastery test for intermediate. The assessment test allows you to examine what the child already knows. The mastery test allows your child to be tested on a skill (addition, subtraction, multiplication, or division), a number (one family, two family, three family, etc.), and can be timed or not timed.

Compete: This tab is a timed test where your child gets a score.

Report: This tab is where you, as the parent, can see your child’s progress.

mastery

Maintain: This tab allows you to adjust settings for each student and check for updates.

maintain

How we used UberSmart:

My daughter, who is just beginning fourth grade, used this program during the review. It was easy to download to the computer and easy to get set up.

I did not have her do the assessment. Since her most difficult area is multiplication, I had her start with multiplication. She started working with the three family (zeros, ones, and twos she already knows pretty well).
After she had done the learn portion of the program, she would do the practice, test (untimed and timed), and compete for each.

What we thought about the program:

She did not like using this program much, but it did help her learn her multiplication facts. She would rather it be more like a game than just going through flash cards. The program did help her to master some multiplication facts that she did not know very well.

I thought the program was helpful. It does help children learn their facts even though it is not “flashy” or game like. I liked that it did help my daughter learn her math facts.



8/22/2014

Quiet Time




















This picture was actually taken at sunset, but I liked the verse. For me it is difficult to find time to have my own quiet time. I try to get up earlier than the kids, but that doesn't always work out great. I don't live where this picture was taken. I live 45 minutes from there. It would be a lot easier to have my quiet time if I lived at the beach.

In trying to find ways to have quiet time while still homeschooling and doing all the other jobs that a stay at home mom does, I have found that I need to make an effort to get up before the kids. I am not a morning person, but I want to change that. I also have a difficult time in the evenings to have my quiet time because I am so exhausted.

The point of this post- just to motivate myself to get up and have quiet time before all the activities of the day begin. Maybe I also encouraged you to do the same.

8/21/2014

Books And Curriculum For Sale

I have several books and curriculum that I have found while cleaning off the shelves for the new school year.

Please comment with a way to reach you if you are interested in any of these books.

This book is a story of Jesus' fictional  nephew, Shem. It's a great little story for young children. I reviewed this book.
This is another book I reviewed.



















 This has stories, research questions, and projects. no writing except name on first page.
 8 pages out of 440 have pen writing on them.
 New, never used, no markings

This book has activities to do for each chapter in the book. There are vocab words and comprehension check. A few pages loose, but all pages are there.

Happy Kids Songs ~ Review

Happy Kids Songs


My little girl, who is three years old, loves to dance around and sing songs. She can learn songs quickly. She had the VBS songs from this summer memorized in just a couple of days. I was recently given the chance to review Happy Kids Songs. We reviewed Volume 1, Volume 6, and Volume 7.

What is Happy Kids Songs?

Happy Kids Songs entertain children while, at the same time, teaching them character traits and social skills. Dr. Mac, who is a child psychologist, has produced eight albums of Happy Kids Songs.

~ Friends and Sharing (Vol.1): This volume contains songs that help teach children about friendship. The songs on this album are as follows: Sailing on the Seven C’s, Everybody Wants to Find a Friend, Sharing Friends, Happy as Happy Can Be, and Together.

~ Manners & Character (Vol. 6): This volume contains songs that teach children about manners and being honest. The songs on this album are as follows: H-o-n-e-s-t-y, The Magic Word, Quirks, The Golden Rule, and Six Little Kids.

~ Happiness & Attitude (Vol. 7): This volume contains songs that are about happiness and giving compliments. The songs on this album are as follows: Shake It Out and Dance, Who Knows What’s A Kudo?, I Don’t Understand, Be Good to Yourself, and Better Together.

Each volume contains five songs and is available for $4.95 or they can be bought separately for $0.99. These songs are appropriate for children ages 3  - 8. You can listen to sample songs on the website.

We also received the Happy Kids Songs Workbook: Hands-On Activities to Build Character, Social, and Emotional Skills to review. The workbook is available for $12.56. The workbook contains 122 pages of fun activities and words to the songs.

How we used Happy Kids Songs and What we thought:

I downloaded the songs to my computer and just played them from the computer. I played each album once a week. So we listened to the songs three times a week.

My three year old loved listening and dancing to the songs. My eight, almost nine, year old thought some of the songs were too babyish for her. For most of the review, it was my three year old. She really loved the songs. She has most of them memorized already and asks to listen to them. Some of the activities in the book were a little too difficult for her, such as filling in the missing letters, so we did the activities that were on her level (coloring). I discussed the songs with her to make sure she understood what the song was teaching.

I enjoyed listening to the songs with her. I liked that the songs had catchy tunes, but I also liked that they taught the child a character trait. I caught myself humming the songs throughout the day. I would recommend these for younger children.



8/19/2014

Wizzy Gizmo ~ Review

Wizzy Gizmo Audio Drama

My kids and I were recently given the opportunity to review Audio Drama One: "Who Created Everything?" from Wizzy Gizmo. I’m always looking for new audio dramas for my children to listen to at home. My children love listening to audio drama’s on the radio and love when I get something new.

What or actually Who is Wizzy Gizmo?

Wizzy Gizmo is an inventor who creates all types of different gadgets. In addition, Wizzy Gizmo offers books, audio drama, and flashcards that are designed to help children learn more about the Bible.

About Audio Drama One: “Who Created Everything?”

Who Created everything? is written by Chris Del Aguila and Justin Cummins. This is a 36 minute Bible audio drama CD that is based on Genesis chapter one. There is also a bonus of 24 minutes of soundtrack on the CD. The bonus tracks are music tracks. This CD is recommended for ages 4-12 and is available on the website for $14.99. There are also samples available to listen to on the website.

wizzygizmo

The CD starts of with a catchy tune and you are then introduced to the characters. A new boy has just arrived in town and he sets out to meet new friends. The children take Eli, the new boy, to meet Wizzy Gizmo. Wizzy loves to invent things. In fact, he has just invented the Gizmovision. This new invention is able to take any book to take you right into the book to experience all the sights and sounds of the book.

Their first adventure takes them back to the beginning- Genesis chapter one. There they are able to see and hear the days of creation. As you travel through the days of creation, the narrator reads the Bible verses from Genesis that go with each day. There are also some fun songs throughout the story.

How We Used the Audio CD:

I put the CD into my laptop after we received it and my 12, 11, 8, and 3 year old listened to it. The first time we listened from beginning to end. When we listened to it again, we just listened to the story, not the music tracks. We did listen to the whole CD several times. My girls (8 and 3) really enjoyed listening to the CD. They also enjoyed listening to the music tracks at the end. The last time we listened to this was when we started school last week. We are doing Mystery of History Volume I this year, so we listened to the CD after the first lesson on Creation.

What we thought:

My boys, even though they are 12 and 11, love listening to audio dramas. They enjoyed listening to this one several times. They said if there are any more Wizzy Gizmo dramas available or coming out that we should get them. I hope there will be more audio dramas to add to our collection. This was really fun to listen to. My girls also can’t wait for there to be more Wizzy Gizmo dramas. I enjoyed the songs in the drama. They went along great with the story. Overall, we give this audio drama 5 stars!



8/18/2014

Menu Plan Monday

MPM-Summer

I'm linking up with I'm An Organizing Junkie for Meal Plan Monday.

Here is my plan for this week:

Monday ~ Salmon patties, baked potatoes, summer squash, green beans
Tuesday~ Baked chicken fajitas
Wednesday ~ Crockpot Italian chicken
Thursday ~ Hamburger steak, rice, veggies
Friday ~ Lentil sloppy joes
Saturday ~ Leftover day or BBQ Chicken
Sunday ~ Roast beef and veggies

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