Monday, September 28, 2009

A Journey Through Learning

First, do you know what lapbook is? A Journey Through Learning explains it as
A lapbook is a FUN, HANDS-ON and CREATIVE way for your child to record information that he/she has learned about a certain subject. First, you create the folder part of your lapbook. This part is made from colored folders that are folded in a special way and glued together. Mini-booklets are then cut out, constructed and glued inside of the folders. Kids really like that!
At this house that is true my kids really do love doing lapbooks, so we were excited to be able to review these lapbooks from A Journey Through Learning, A team of homeschooling moms Nancy and Paula who create a wide assortment of lapbooks and unit studies. After some debate we chose to work on the Desert and The Parables of the King.

These lapbook guides contain every thing you need to finish your lapbook. The guide contains the lesson and after each lesson are 1 or more mini-booklets to fill out with the information you have just learned. These booklets are in color with great clip art on them. Each booklet page tells you exactly were your mini- booklet is to be glued into the lapbook, no guessing how to make all those booklets fit!
The back section of these lapbooks is MY favorite part there is a page of suggested additional reading, to encourage your child to learn more about what they are studying. A page that they can list their reading, narration forms, and NICK a page to help your child organize notes, and in Parables a biography report form about Jesus. We are working on trying to take notes with my younger kids and the forms have made this fun for them.

From when we started these lapbooks to now, (we are not all the way finished as we have taken extra time to do them). I have to say these lapbooks are easy to use, full of information, and my kids like them alot! They are learning about deserts and that has made our study of Ancient Egypt more interesting. The Parables of the King is keeping our morning Bible time hands on and creative. The kids are learning about the parables and deserts, the important key here is learning AND enjoying the process.

A Journey Through Learning has a wonderful variety of lapbooks to choose from.
Instant download $13, On CD for $14 and the printed version for $21

If you would like to see what other crew members have to say about the lapbooks they chose to do, please click here.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Nutrition 101: Choose Life!

Nutrition 101: Choose Life! is a biblically based family centered curriculum that is both a health and science course. This program covers healthy eating based on the body systems and how they function.

This is NOT your typical health/nutrition program that is based on the standard American diet (SAD). Nutrition 101 is based on God's wonderful design of our bodies and His plan for His people to live in wellness and health using a more Nourishing Traditions/whole foods approach to a lifestyle diet.

Nutrition 101 is based on an approach, that is based on the body systems. Each unit is arranged around a body system, and how that system functions (science), then how our food choices support (or not) that system (health).
For example, the first unit is on the brain and nervous system, you learn how each functions and the foods that promote brain/nervous system health, such as omega 3, 6, and 9 fats that are especially important in our diets for the brain and nervous system , and how to choose supplements for your brain and nervous system to function optimally. You will learn about all the different fats and why we need fats in our diet.
Each chapter has discussion questions, activities, and a power recipe to try.
For the youngest ones this may go over their heads as written, so we used a lapbooking/notebooking approach with the children to help them better understand the material. They are getting the idea that our food choices effect how our bodies perform, and that is exactly what I want for them!

Nutrition 101: Choose Life! is broken down into 6 units that cover the following:
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
Each unit has 4 chapters with activities, discussions, and activities for both elementary and secondary levels so the whole family can study together. This is a huge book with 448 pages!
The appendix alone is over 100 pages of great information, like how to select fresh produce, vitamin and mineral charts, an article on milk the big debate, sugar alternatives and so much more!

There is so much in this program, I love that I have a way to teach my kids nutrition from a Godly perspective and in a way that follows how we are trying to change our lifestyle/diet.
The kids love the human body study that ties in nutrition, and that they can make edible "experiments" ( These recipes are awesome, and a great way to introduce healthy food to your family...if the kids make it they are much more likely to EAT it!

Nutrition 101: Choose Life is available at the Growing Healthy Homes website as a:
CD e-book for $79.95
printed book for $99.95
a combo CD and print book for $129.95
Please don't let these prices scare you off, this is so worth it!

If you would like to see what the other CREW members have to say please go here.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009


What is a STUDYPOD? It's a book holder for starters but in reality, so much more!
Here's a quote from the STUDYPOD website:
"Developed by a teacher, the STUDYPOD book holder provides a simple way to improve your studying. It holds any size textbook and study sheets upright at a comfortable level (similar to the angle of your computer screen) helping maximize your focus. It holds virtually any textbook wide open, freeing hands for writing, typing or eating. You’ll love the book-like design and the handy internal pocket that can hold your other study supplies.
Think about this- 30 years ago, not many students used a backpack for school. Mostly hikers and outdoorsmen used them. Fast forward to today- Every student uses one. They ease students’ loads, organize their belongings and come in a variety of shapes and colors. We believe the STUDYPOD book holder is the next backpack. Once you use it, you’ll wonder how you ever studied without it!"

This is one versatile tool! I have used it for so many things... a cookbook holder and a notes holder during our TOG discussions to name a few.
This item is great for holding a book while you work or while you are multi-tasking and holding a baby! I really like that it holds my pens, pencils and hi-lighters all together with the book or notes that I am using. This is one tool I could use in almost every room in our home. The children love to use the STUDYPOD when they are studying too, so much so that I am going to need to buy one for each of my kids.

Christmas is just around the corner and the STUDYPOD is a great gift!

The STUDYPOD and BOOKPOD book holders are physically the same products but are sold under different names and colors. The STUDYPOD is available in Black, Blue, and Pink and the BOOKPOD is available in Black, Gray, and Beige. You can buy one unit for $19.95 and if you buy two or more you can buy them at the discounted price of only $16.95 each. You can mix and match the STUDYPOD or BOOKPOD to take advantage of the available colors and the still get the discounted $16.95 price.
And as a CREW review reader you can save $5 buy using the code: TOSBLOG5

If you would like to see what other crew mates have to say about the studypod please click here

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Rocket Phonics

I have received some wonderful curriculum to review on the crew, but I have truly prayed for a reading program that would help in a number of ways. first I have some struggling readers that are very discouraged and second I have to teach three 5 year old boys this year. I also still have two girls that are working towards that independent reading stage. that means I have 7 very different children needing to be working on reading!!! My answer came in the program that I have been blessed to review: ROCKET PHONICS.
"Rocket Phonics is a research-based, scientifically proven method of teaching reading. Hands down the best phonics program available today, it’s fast, fun, easy-to-use, over three times as effective, and half the cost of competing programs. Rocket Phonics is so effective your child could be reading by the end of the very first lesson!
Created for children ages 4-10, Rocket Phonics turns reading lessons into a world of fun with games, riddles, jokes and classic stories.

Perfect for children of all learning styles, even very active kids. With Rocket Phonics readers go from non-reader to 5th grade reading in two years or less".
So whats so different about this program? The initial teaching alphabet (ITA) uses a different approach. Instead of teaching the 26 letters of the alphabet and the many sounds they make, the child learns the 36 ITA sounds. This is done with the play and learn cards. These cards have the letter or letter pair and a picture to represent the corresponding sound. Once these sounds are learned through games like bingo, go fish and letter leap Your child will begin blending, and moving on to using "helpers" to read. Helpers are used with the non-phonetic words, as a prompting system and it is really simple!
The system looks like:
Now this is were this programed just "shined" for us. My struggling readers got it! They could read AND understand what they had just read, because they did not have to struggle to sound it out. They could spend time comprehending what they read without reading the same passage over and over. This was a real boost to their confidence. Eventually these helpers are phased out as the student progresses and the words are learned.
I love this program! I will be giving updates as we go through Rocket Phonics this year and will share how my readers are progressing. I have a feeling this will be the one that will allow them to soar with their reading.
What's The Cost For This Incredible Program?
For only 3 payments of $54, you and your children
can experience
the magic of Rocket Phonics. Of course,
Rocket Phonics is
completely satisfaction guaranteed. And now
Rocket Phonics is
even a better value than ever, too:
Each Rocket Phonics kit comes with:
    • 2 big Rocket Phonics readers
    • Two sets of Play & Read symbol cards
    • Bingo chips
    • Rocket Peeker
    • Bingo sheets and Word lists for testing
    • New! Big-movement games for preschoolers
    • and active learners -- and bonuses, below

As a special gift with your purchase you will
receive three
free bonuses valued at over $100
Free Bonus Gift #1: Free 28 bonus gifts:
With your purchase,
you’ll receive by email free
each week for 28 weeks a bonus gift to
your kit. New! Now
included: Spelling Strategy
multi-sensory, developed by spelling specialists,
and nearly foolproof!
Also, 12 Writing
Lessons, perfect for kindergarten or first grade.
You and your child
will be thrilled with each
week’s additional stories, riddles, games, beginning
reading tips and
more. There's extra
practice for each grade level! ($69.95 value)
Free Bonus Gift #2: Two Rocket Phonics
Treasure Hunts
: The
rhyming clues are
written both with and without Rocket Phonics’
unique helpers, so very
early readers can
read beyond their grade levels to figure out
clues and find the treasure.
Your children will
love these. Prizes, such as sticky hands, kazoos,
etc., are all included
and ready for fun.
($16.95 value)
Free Bonus Gift #3: Rocket Phonics Word-Find
Treasure Hunt
and the Rocket
Phonics Phrase Game: Your child will delight
in finding and reading
one word or phrase at
a time with these games emailed to you.
($19.95 value)
If you would like to see what other CREW members
have to say about
Rocket Phonics please click here

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Emily is Born

Emily Mayumi
8pounds 2oz
Congratulations Jacob and Maki she is beautiful!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

College Prep Genius

How does one study for the SAT or PSAT? This can be an intimidating task to say the least. Many young people today take these tests with little or no preparation, which can lead to lower scores and taking these tests again. I have found an answer to this dilemma, and the answer is College Prep Genius.
There is a method to these types of tests. The SAT and PSAT are not tests about knowledge, they are tests about your ability to apply logic and reasoning. It is vital for students to understand how to master these types of tests. I have great news! This is exactly what College Prep Genius is all about.
College Prep Genius Master the SAT Class: the no brainer way to SAT success. This set includes: The DVD lecture series, textbook and workbook. The 4 DVD set contains over 5 hours of relevant and informative lectures. The topics of these lectures include: introduction to the SAT, Critical Reading and Math and Writing. The Textbook is chocked full of test taking strategies, tips and shortcuts. The included workbook has sample SAT and PSAT problems for the student to practice what they have learned from the lectures series and the textbook.
This class has provided invaluable information for successful SAT and PSAT testing. I have also seen how this information can be used to bolster general test taking strategies. We are beginning to work thru this program and will provide an update on our progress in the coming weeks. This is a valuable tool to assist your students to achieve higher test scores, and one that I would recommend.

To begin your journey to higher SAT/PSAT scores, please click here and please take a moment to sign up for their informative newsletter while you are there. Oh, one more thing, the program is available for a special discounted price! Please see the details below!

Introductory Price:

$79 (30% OFF!)
There is no need to spend a fortune on an SAT prep course. For a limited time, the entire COLLEGE PREP GENIUS DVD set is available at the discounted price of $79. This price includes the revolutionary textbook, workbook and teaching DVD's. That’s 30% off the retail price!

Monday, September 7, 2009

Title: Subscribe to The Old Schoolhouse™ Magazine for only $7.95!

Homeschooling is a Labor of Love, and the Old Schoolhouse™ Magazine is celebrating your hard work as a parent by putting their one-year print subscriptions on sale! For a very limited time, you can subscribe or renew for $7.95! (US only). International customers can subscribe to the digital edition for only 7.95!

You can buy a gift sub for friends, too! To gift a subscription:
1. Go to the one-year subscription page (uS only)
2. Scroll to the bottom of the page.
3. Enter the name, address, email, and phone information for each recipient
4. click "Add this to my cart".
5. The information will display in your cart and simply proceeed to check out.

There are only 2000 of these available, and they are going quickly! Your subscription begins with their Fall Issue.

If you live in an international location, you can subscribe to their digital edition for only $7.95! It's the same great content as their print magazine, except it is instant and interactive!

Here are the two links: