Thursday, March 26, 2009

TOS Easter Freebies!

The Old Schoolhouse Magazine is offering a FREE Easter goodies for everyone to download! Go here and get more information!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Peterson's Directed Handwriting

Handwriting? How do you teach a child to write? Well, if you are like me you do what you know. Handwriting has always been one of those subjects that stresses me and my children. We have had many days of tears due to handwriting issues. Forming letters correctly and the right size. When my oldest was learning, we were beyond frustration and had to just back up and not worry so much. She did eventually learn to write better, but she is still not a great writer. Although, she now will write things without it being a chore to do. And so when we were given the chance to try Peterson's Directed Handwriting Curriculum, I was excited that I would be able to make my daughters techniques and style better. That she would become a better writer. Well...... I am sad to say, we were not able to use the curriculum. It is just too much work to implement into our home school. First of all, the lessons are so different. My daughter was just too used to the way we have always done things. This was bringing back those tears and frustration on my part and I just don't want that. The requirement for desk height was a major problem. We are a HOME school family. We do school at the dining room table and we can't cut the legs off our table. My husband was going to try to build a seat for her to sit on, but never was able to do so. The last thing that was more frustrating for my daughter was the angle of the paper. She just has never done that and I really tried to get it through to her, but she would get upset. So I gave up. This one feature of the curriculum, I really could see helping her. Anyway, you have to do what is best for your family. My other daughter is in Kindergarten and is just starting to write, so we may actually try a little harder doing some of the things that the curriculum teaches with her. One thing I would like to stress to you is that not every curriculum works for everyone. Read other reviews of products before you decide. What may not work for my family, may very well work for yours. So go and check out the other reviews at the TOS Crew site before deciding on this curriculum. Just for my family so far it has not been a working curriculum. Oh one more thing, I want you to know if you have questions about the curriculum at Peterson's Directed Handwriting the customer service is AWESOME. Rand Nelson was so willing to help us in anyway he could. Too bad he couldn't just come and show us hands on. lol Thank you, Mr.Nelson for all you did to try to help our family. May your company be blessed.

This review was originally posted in January 2009! I re-posted due to an spelling error I had made. Thanks to the person who let me know about my mistake!

Monday, March 16, 2009

Our new family picture

My Family
February 2009

Giveaway at Homeschooling hearts and minds blog

Go and check out the giveaway at Homeschooling hearts and minds. She is giving a way the New Testament Activity Pak from Homeschool in the Woods! You can enter the contest till April 3rd! Go now and enter!

Friday, March 13, 2009

One2believe Noah's Ark Set

One2believe has done it again for our family! We have fell in love with the Noah's ark set that we were sent to review! The day that the set arrived at our house the girls were so excited to see what was inside the box! In fact the picture on the outside had us all stumped! It was a teddy bear box! lol So when we opened it and see that it was Noah's ark and it had all these beautiful animals we were so excited! It didn't take long for the girls to get over the fact that they weren't getting a teddy bear! lol So we opened it all up and rescued the animals out of the individual plastic wrapping! lol After the animals came Noah and his small staff! lol Which by the way I put up in the cabinet so it wouldn't be lost or used as a toothpick! lol So we had all the pieces out and the girls played for a few minutes before my little one said "Mom, I want to take a bath! " I told her it was not bath time, but she insisted that she go take a bath and that the Noah's ark and all the animals go with her! lol So we went and got things set up in the bathtub and put the Noah's ark to the water proof test! She was so excited and she played for a long time with the ark that floats! lol Then when she was done we put it out to dry and packaged it all neatly inside the ark and placed it in it's new spot with all the educational toys! lol That is so we don't loose it in the toy box! lol The Noah's ark has been to church with us too! We had to take it and show it there as well! We are very pleased with the ark as well as the Nativity set that we received to review from One2believe! It is a great investment that I would recommend to every family! I feel that this would be a great investment to anyone who works with children as well, daycare, Sunday school teachers, church nursery workers and more! Go to One2believe and see what other products that your family may use. Let's support a great company that is trying to provide wholesome toys for our children!

Thursday, March 12, 2009

March Madness at The Old Schoolhouse Store!

Do you like saving up to 80%?
Get next year's shopping done early and for less money at the March Madness sale in the Schoolhouse Store! Check out some of the unit studiesand copy work to help round out this school year or for fun summeractivities. Almost 200 items are on sale from vendors suchas Auralog, Trigger Memory, Draw and Write Through History, AmericanSchoolhouse Readers, and MANY more. Start shopping and saving NOW!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Just Pure Lovely Blog Contest!

This is copied from Just Pure Lovely Blog!

A BIG Giveaway! $150 Worth of Fashion Office Line Products
One of my favorite things to do is browse around in a stationery shop. You can just have the clothing and shoe departments; I'll be in the office supplies aisle at the local grocery/everything store. There is something about the smell, the feel, the very sight of paper and pencils, ink and organizers that inspire me to write the Great American Novel (or...a grocery list). Because of my obsession with all things that have to do with "paper" and "writing" and "organizing" (oh, my!), I am So. Very. Delighted to host this BIG ($150 value) giveaway from Carolina Pad for one of you.Are you a fun-loving, colorful gal who loves polkadots and stripes? This set is called "Eye Candy:"
Or are you more of a fashionista, into black, green, pink, and cool designs? This set is called "Simply Chic:" The winner of this giveaway gets to choose which set to call her (his?) own! I know, I know. How can you ever choose? I'll leave that dilemma to the winner. I couldn't choose, so I own parts of both sets. I use the Eye Candy pieces for schooling and the Simply Chic pieces in my little office for organizing and for writing. The quality and colors are not only fabulous (and much more vibrant than in the photos above - my favorite piece is the faux leather notebook cover from the Simply Chic line - above, mid right. It is hot, hot pink)...not only are the products well made, but there is the added benefit of getting more organizing, writing and schooling done because I'm excited to use my pretty new products! Carolina Pad is the maker of these fine products and they want to share a $150 set of their products with one of you. The winner will choose either the Eye Candy set or the Simply Chic set, shipped to her/him,!

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Artist Pursuits K-3

We had the opportunity to try Artistic Pursuits K-3 Book 1! I have not done much of the actual art with my children from this book, so I ask my artistic friend to look it over for me and tell me what she thought! She is a certified art teacher! She has taught lots of different classes with different age groups. In fact she has taught several homeschool co-op classes and she doesn't have any children! So I feel that this review is based upon her EXPERT opinion!

We feel that this is a good program with lots of good qualities! Some of the lessons seem kinda "heavy" in her words! She thinks that a Kindergarten age would have a hard time grasping a lot of the lessons. Although they could learn a lot about the different mediums! Using all the different things to do art is great for kids! I told her that I couldn't see using some of them with my kids due to expense and mess! Although she encouraged me to do so! lol So over all we think that the program is good! I think that the price is a bit high! My friend does not! She knows more about the art world and prices then I do! So I take her word for it! I just feel that as a homeschool family we are always stretching each and every dollar and I couldn't justify buying a curriculum for the price and then buying all my supplies!

So you can go here and find out more information!

You can read more reviews for all the products that Artist Pursuits has here at the TOS Homeschool Crew!

Friday, March 6, 2009


Spelling software for mastering spelling words fast!

Do your kids struggle with learning their weekly spelling words? Do you sit with them nightly going over the list verbally with them only to end in frustration? How would you like a program that will excite your kids into learning their spelling words? While also freeing you up from sitting with them while they are learning! SpellQuizzer does just that! With the program, your computer and a microphone you enter your kids spelling words verbally with your microphone and when they are ready to practice they go on the program and listen to your voice and then type in the words! You also can type in a written description of the word! SpellQuizzer will tell them if they are right or wrong and at the end give them the opportunity to retry the words they missed! It is a really neat way for your kids to practice their spelling!

The program is easy to function and work both for the parents and the kids!
My kids love anything to do with going on the computer to learn!

SpellQuizzer also has a wonderful Try before you buy on their site! So you can go to the site and try it out for FREE! If you decide you want the program it is only $29.95! Now this is great and will last the entire time your kids are in school! Also great for just keeping up with spelling as a grown up! lol Our spelling does tend to get worse with age! So go and check out the site and see what you think! We give it a big thumbs up!

Want to read others reviews of this product? Go here to the TOS Homeschool Crew!

Monday, March 2, 2009

Five In A Row

I had heard about Five in a Row for a long time! Online in my groups people had talked about using it, but I had a hard time finding it in my local library. So I went in search on ebay to find a book. Well not really understanding the concept I bought a book that was a Christian Supplement to the Five in a Row books! Which didn't help me at all. That is why I now recomend the Five in a Row site! So I filed it away and kept my eyes open! I wanted to try it, but didn't know when. So when I found out that we would get to review it for the TOS homeschool crew I was so excited! We were given to the chance to try Volume 3! So again I was on a search to find the books that go with this volume. I was sad as my local library had NONE! So I went to the library in the next town only to be even more disappointed that they didn't have the books either! So as a last ditch effort I went to ebay and yes!!!! I found the books! I didn't really want to buy my books, but I did find 2 that I wanted to try and bought them! We have completed one so far and we absolutely love it! "The Bee Tree" by Patricia Polacco We had so much fun doing this book! My kids made a bee lapbook to go along with the theme and it was so much fun! I love the concept of Five in a Row books! To take a book and learn about all the different subjects related to the book! It is perfect for my 5 and 7 year old girls! It is the perfect hands on learning that fits our family! Thanks to Five in a Row for letting us review your product and now that I know where to buy them, I will be shopping your site! Want to go there check it out here!

Volume 3:

The Bee Tree by Patricia Polacco
Andy and the Circus by Ellis Credle
The Wild Horses of Sweetbriar by Natalie Kinsey-Warnock
Paul Revere's Ride by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ill. by Ted Rand
Henry the Castaway by Mark Taylor
The Finest Horse in Town by Jacqueline Briggs Martin
Truman's Aunt Farm by Jama Kim Rattigan
The Duchess Bakes a Cake by Virginia Kahl
Andy and the Lion by James Daugherty
Daniel's Duck by Clyde Robert Bulla
Warm as Wool by Scott Russell Sanders
The Salamander Room by Anne Mazer
Climbing Kansas Mountains by George Shannon
Amber on the Mountain by Tony Johnston
Little Nino's Pizzeria by Karen Barbour

Heads Up!

Do your kids struggle with a learning disability? Maybe just have a hard time concentrating on their work? Heads Up is a great place to get some great tools to help your kids learn better! We were given the chance to try a few of their products recently and I would like to share them with you!

Heads Up Top of the Line!

This product helps your kids to stay focused on what they are reading! They can keep their place! My daughter struggles with getting off the line and she will read the wrong line, this eliminates that! They must move the bookmark shaped guide down the page as they read each sentence. This was the biggest challenge for us! Getting my daughter to read the line then only move one line to the next line. Overall though it was a success and I can see us using these till they wear out or get lost! lol And you can not beat the price! $1.00 each! I love that!

These frames are designed to help your children not be overwhelmed with the whole page of work. You can set just a section of work and they will know that is all they have to consecrate on and not the entire page of work. My daughter starts having a meltdown when she sees a whole sheet of math! These are great for that. Just section off a section to be done during your math time and not worry about the rest until that is accomplished or another day! I think this is awesome and will save me a lot of meltdowns! Thanks Heads Up! Again the price is AWESOME! Only $1.00 each!

Heads Up Reader!
These are a another great tool! They help the child to read just the line, unlike the previous ones these have a colored strip with black strips above and below. My daughter had a hard time with these getting the concept of moving it as she read the line. As long as I was right beside her helping her it worked, but when I walked away she was lost. I think with a lot more time and practice she could come to use these on a regular basis though. She is only 7 and is a beginning reader! She is doing great though and I feel that Heads Up is going to make her do even better! Thanks again Heads up for allowing our family the chance to try your products! Again these are priced great! Go and check out their site here! They have a lot more great products that you may enjoy! Check them out!