Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Spelling You See Review

Spelling You See Review

Product: Ancient Achievements Level F

Price: Student Pack- $30

Instructors Handbook- $14

Spelling You See ReviewAboutSpelling You See is a program designed by Dr. Karen Holinga. Dr. Holinga is a reading specialist and has helped many kids. The Ancient Achievements set comes with two student workbooks and a package of erasable colored pencils. You can also get the instructors handbook to go with the set.

Ancient Achievements is set up in 36 lessons. Those lessons are then divided in sections A-E. So this allows for you to do a lesson a week and one section in a day. Really helps take the planing out of it so you can just get to work. The lesson starts out with a passage that is read. Once the child reads this passage they use one of the colored pencils and have them find the letter patters in the days passage. Then there was copy work of the passage through the other days. On Thursday and Friday you read the passage to your child and they write it as you read it to them. Then you see what they got right. Each day you strive to get a higher number.
The instructors handbook is handy as well. It gives tips on each lesson as well as the instructions on how to do the lesson. It also holds the answer key.

Spelling You See ReviewHow we used: I used this with my 10 year old. We stuck to doing one section each day and a new lesson each week. I would read the passage to her to start the lesson then allow her to read it and then go over it and start finding the letter patterns. After she does this she then goes on to copy the passage. On the last two days I read the lesson out loud to her while she writes what I am saying. You then count the ones she got right and strive for more the next day. I like this method of positive grading. Sometimes she got pretty competitive with herself and would want to write the passage on her own paper to see if she could get it completely right. The passages are also history stories which prompted us to dig further on some of them because they were interesting. The lesson itself took under 30 minutes to do each day. The lessons also include a spotlight for each one. These go over the words they learned in the passage for the week or some interesting facts to go along with it. Those were always fun to get to.

Spelling You See ReviewThoughts: My 10 year old is pretty good at language but we always love trying out new ways to learn. She really liked the way this program was set up. Also being able to use colored pencils made it seem more fun too I think. This also made me realize that this program would be great for my daughter that is dyslexic because having colors over words and letters allows her to focus on them better. This is something we have never seen in any other program before. I also love how it is done to become a pattern for them and not just trying to do spelling lists that make kids confused. This allows them to be a creator and be able to write a story. 

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Spelling You See Review

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

ARTistic Pursuits Review

Price: $47.95

Age: 11-18

About: ARTistic Pursuits book
Sculpture Technique: Model, was very fun to review. This book teaches the children to build things in three dimensions using specific materials. The book starts out with the table of contents, which shows you the units in the book. There are three main units in it; Creating Mass with Putty, Creating Scale with Clay, and Creating Surface with Fiber. This page also gives you the list of art supplies you will need in order to do all the units in the book. Each unit then goes over the material list then the properties of the material you will be using in the unit. It then goes on with the techniques and at the end of the unit there is an evaluation. At the end of the book there is answer sheets, course descriptions, templates and class schedule. These are more for if you want to use this for highschool age kids. This course is made to also be used to gain a credit in visual arts. 

How we used: I used this mainly with my 10 year old while letting the others kind of follow along. She is just out of the age range but she really enjoys sculpting things so I thought it would be a good fit for her. Since we are more of a fun schooling type of family we work on art every day. I would start out by spending our first day going over the material list and then going shopping for the materials. I think any art person knows its more fun to pick the stuff out yourself. I also think it helped her learn what things were called and such too. Then each day we would go over another part in the unit, starting with the properties of the material we were using. Unit one we were using putty. Each unit has key terms also that are taught. we wrote all these out so that we could have them to sit beside us while doing work. We tried to use them as much as possible until she learned what they were and what they meant. Then we would move on the the projects, we usually spent a few days or more, depending on the details of the project. on each project. Some were easier than others. She did find that she liked to use clay better than the putty as it was a bit more forgiving on mistakes and was also easier to add textures to it. After we finished the unit we choose to do the evaluation out loud. Since she is not old enough to do it as a credit class we just did it as a discussion. We went over all the questions to make sure she understood what was taught in the unit. We went back to the things she didn't know the answer to.

Overall we always enjoy using ARTistic Pursuits. It makes doing art fun but also learning a lot of very important information to go with it. I think this book would be great to any children that have a love for sculpting as well as teens that need and want a credit in art. I also apologize we did not have pictures to post. My daughter dropped my phone on the concrete floor taking a picture and completely shattered my screen.  But be sure to check out my crew members and their great pictures.

ARTistic Pursuits Review

New girl to the farm

So I have been looking for a milk goat to join the team. Today I finally found on and already got some of her liquid gold.

Yes you might be a redneck if you go get a goat and load it in the trunk area of your minivan full of children. :) She made it home safely and she did not poop or pee in the back so that was a plus. 

I introduced her to the other animals and the other goats. Of course Our other nanny, Charlotte, was a little jealous of sharing her space. Billy of course was like, "oh a new girlfriend", he was not so happy that he was not allowed near her.

Then the time came to milk her. She did great for being in a new place. I did great for not having milked a goat in ages. I would have gotten a full quart out of her but it was storming and the other goat got out and shoved me and I spilled a ton. We shall see how morning does for it.

Thursday, April 16, 2015

A simple meaning.

     I love this time of year when the Dandelions pop up. This is a picture of the first one of the season in my yard. What's the big deal you ask? 
     Well Sept.  15th 2005 my big brother passed away at 27 years old. Aaron was always my hero growing up. Even when he was mean to me, like the time he shoved me in the basketball goal and left me, I always looked up to him. He could always find the positive in any situation or person. He knew this was a tough world but he also knew how to push through it. He had a beautiful little girl and a newly pregnant wife when he passed. So needless to say it is always hard for me to deal with his loss. 
     But back to the topic of the flower. My brother would always trick me by saying close your eyes and open your mouth for a surprise, and just as I would get my mouth open he would shove the flower in. LOL. May not seem like the best memory but to me those are all I have. The good and the bad I am thankful for each and everyone of them.  I am also thankful for these flowers that pop up and strike those memories for me.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Memoria Press Review

Vendor: Memoria Press
Price: $42.95 for the full set
Age: Kindergarten

About: First Start Reading, by Memoria Press is a reading program for children at the kindergarten level. The program covers consonants, short and long vowels, common words, and printing. There are four story books and thirty-one phonetic stories.  The full set also comes with a teachers guide which gives many tips as well as assessments. Each letter has its own page as well, then other pages with other activities on writing and reading. You can check out sample pages for each of the four books below:

You can buy the full set or just the student set. This is good if you already had the teacher book and have multiple children you want to use this with. I wouldn't suggest skipping out on the teacher guide though as it has a lot of helpful tips that you will not want to miss out on.

How we used: I used this program with my six year old. We just started kindergarten this year as he completely had no interest in learning last year. We have been having a hard time getting him interested in reading still. He is picking up numbers and such fine but all the reading work we find is so much work he gets bored fast. When I first looked over First Start Reading I loved how it was broke down into four books. This made it seem not as overwhelming for him. It is also not set up to do page after page of tracing letters, they are mixed up through the books.
Book A has 25 lessons and it starts with learning the letter M. Then you eventually learn the word am. The book does this to progress each thing you learned to the next lesson and so on. Book B has 26 lessons and progresses to short stories. Book C has 33 lessons and they learn more CVC words and some harder stories. Finally Book D has 12 lessons and teaches long sounds and blends with more stories. We worked on a lesson or two each day. Depending on how well he was responding to what was being taught. This usually took us about 20-30 minutes by the time he traces and writes things out. Then coloring pages took longer of course. 

He really picked up on learning the CVC words better this way than me just doing flash cards and trying to memorize them. It also helped him pick up the letter sounds as well better. I know there are tons of programs out there and I assure you I have tried my share with my dyslexic daughter. I could only wish this was in my hands when I was teaching her, I think it would have been so much easier. I think this program would be a great all in one starting program or even a supplement to help those struggling with it in school or homeschool. 

Be sure to check out what my other crew members thought of it below.

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Memoria Press Review

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

We got a new guard dog

Through lots of searching and losing lots of chickens we have finally found a guard dog. Her name is Pipi and she is a Great Pyrenees and Golden Retriever mix. She is a big dog needless to say. Hopefully now the foxes will get the hint that I am not playing when I say leave my chickens alone.

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Incredible Pizza in Springfield, MO Review

Where: Incredible Pizza
            2850 S Campbell Ave
            Springfield, MO

This place is seriously super fun. We went in and first thing we did was go straight to the buffet and enjoyed all of our favorite pizzas. There was many to choose from and all were fresh and kept stocked. The workers were are super friendly making sure we seen what we wanted as well. Buffet is really great with children because you never know what they want and this way they pick what they want and can get full. 

Next we entered over to the "Fair Grounds" where all of the games and  were. This place had  go karts!!! I did not know how that would work inside a building but wow, this big kid enjoyed it as much as my little kids did. They also have laser tag, mini golf, and bumper cars. This place is seriously awesome for all ages. There are over 100 arcade/carnival style games. There was no way we would have been able to try them all out during our time there. BUT do not let that bum you out because it means you can come back to this place and it will be just as fun as your first time. You will always have something new to experience when you go.

Parking is also free and plentiful. It is super easy to find and right off the main road. This is great for out of town people that may not know the area very well. It is easy in and out. Be sure to check them out next time you are in Springfield and try the buffet! Below is a great offer for my readers.
Get a 99 cent All-You-Can-Eat Buffet with a $15 Game Card Purchase at America's Incredible Pizza Company. Not valid with any other offer or discount. Can not be used towards a private birthday party, fundraising event or private group event. Valid at our Memphis, Springfield, St. Louis, San Antonio, and Tulsa locations only. @usfg