Thursday, March 31, 2016

Memoria Press Review

Memoria Press Literature Guides Review
Vendor: Memoria Press
Product: Third Grade Literature Guide
Price: $95.00
Age: Third Grade

Memoria Press Literature Guides Review
Memoria Press provides classical Christian education for all ages. They are a family ran business and provide families and private schools with Christian curricumum. Memoria Press was founded in 1994 by Cheryl Lowe, who also homeschooled her son's. I was blessed to get the chance to review their Third Grade Literature Guide. You can buy the guides alone, which is what I recieved for review, or you can buy the guides and the books that go with the guides as a set for a little bit more. The books that go with the guides are: Charlotte's Web, Farmer Boy, Paddington Bear, and Mr. Popper's Penguins.

The guides are ment to get your child thinking and engaged into reading. They focus on vocabulary, spelling, comprehension, and composition skills. Each book comes with a teacher guide as well as a student work book. Each book comes with the student guide as well as a teacher guide. We decided to start with Charlotte's Web since we already had the book and didn't have to track one down. The student guide is broken down by chapters, so we decided to read one chapter a day and then do the guide that went along with that chapter. We read the first chapter and then opened up our study guide. Each lesson is broken into sections:
reading notes- gives definitions of words that may not be real common.
vocabulary- this is the place that gives the vocabulary words for the chapter. It leaves space for the child to write the definitions.
comprehension questions- this is where they write the answers to questions asked about the chapter.
quotations and discussion questions- this is more of an open ended discussion. We actually did these orally vs writing all we wanted to say.
enrichment- is kind of a language lesson. Each enrichment is different but the idea is they copy a paragraph and find the key things about it and things that make it a paragraph.

Overall we loved the program. It is great to find an easily put together reading program. Sometimes I think kids just fly through books without paying attention to what they are reading. I find having guides like this keeps them in task and keeps them thinking about the points in the book. When you don't pay attention to the story you will never learn to love reading. One of Memoria Press's goals is to get kids to appreciate well written books. I really think this is a great way to get that.

Also, each book title comes with its own guide to go with it. All of the guides are set up the same way that Charlotte's Web was. Just over the new story book. I think with all the books this would be a good full year literature study but still allowing time to read other books for free reading or study reading.

Social Media Links:

Facebook -
Twitter (@MemoriaPress) -
Instagram (@memoriapress) -
LinkedIn -
Pinterest -
Google+ - sure to check out what my other crew members had to say about other grade levels
Memoria Press Literature Guides Review

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Logic of English Review

Logic of English Review
Vendor: Logic of English
Product: Essentials 2nd Edition
Price: $ 198
Age: 7 and up
Logic of English Review
About : Logic of English is a great English curricumum. They are a company that promotes an easier way to learn reading, writing, and spelling. With their multi sensory approach they use 31 spelling rules and 74 basic phonograms. With the Essentinels program it also allows to use up to three years with this one product. The teachers book is easily followed with their one lesson per week plans. The kit comes with the following:
-Essentials Teacher's Guide, Volume 1
- Essentials Student Workbook, Volume 1 (student consumable)
- Spelling Journal (student consumable)
- Morpheme Cards, Set 1
- Basic Phonogram Flash Cards
- Spelling Rule Flash Cards
- Grammar Flash Cards
- Advanced Phonogram Flash Cards
- Phonogram Game Cards: Bookface
- Phonogram Game Cards: Manuscript or Cursive
- Phonogram Game Tiles
- Spelling Analysis Card
- Phonogram and Spelling Rule Quick Reference
Give your self at least a couple days to look over everything and be able to read in the teacher guide some. There is a lot of stuff so it can seem overwhelming if you don't just break it down to one thing at a time. Once you have gotten your hands on every thing you will see the teacher guide helps walk you through it all. The introduction alone is 40 pages long.

There are 3 levels to this program, each level is a years worth of instruction. You take the placement test to see which level to start your child at; A, B, or C. You can also use each level to be able to teach multiple children at the same time that are at different stages. Next you have about 10 prelessons that wI'll get your child ready for the first level. The lessons are a scheduled to be a week long with 15 lessons total for Vol. 1. Each lesson is broken down daily into 5 days.

Day 1: Essential Concepts. Phonograms, Exploring Sounds, Spelling Rules
Day 2: Building Words. Spelling Journal, Spelling Analysis
Day 3: Words in Context. Spelling Game, Grammar, Dictation
Day 4: Words in Action. Vocabulary, Dictation, Composition. Optional: Essentials Reader
Day 5: Check Your Understanding. Formative assessment

The teachers book has each lesson and completely written out for you. I read from the book to prepare for the lesson to my daughter. We then spend about an hour working on the lesson. My daugher is dyslexic though and we still have not fully grasped reading and spelling well so it takes us longer than if I was using it with my other kids. Each lesson as the coordinating pages in the student book to go along with it. Each week then has different spelling words and goes over the spelling rules. The flashcards help in this area too for the visual kids. My daughter thought the best part of the lessons were the games. Some fun ways to keep the learning going. You also have the option to use the Essential Readers. These are for kids 8 and up struggling with reading. Since my daughter has this issue we were happy to use these too. They give extra practice for them. 

Overall we really are enjoying this program. I have had perks in other programs but this one seems to have an easier way for my dyslexic child to understand rules when it comes to reading and spelling. It's not about memorization like other programs, it gives the kids the why and then they can understand better. She is doing really well and emerging. I think this product would be great for those that have some struggling with their English lessons or those that get overwhelmed with all the rules that there are in other programs. 

Also check out what my other crew mates had to say about the program and the Foundations program for younger kids. 

Logic of English Review

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

The face

Sometimes when you are out and about enjoying your life you look up and see this face from people....

Usually it's because I have 5 kids in tow and I've been asked if they were all mine. I feel like I have a small family and there are more important things that deserve that look.
Take a look at that picture again real carefully. You see that giant gator? Ya that's something worthy of that face. The only thing between me and him was a dirt road. I'm pretty sure he had a few smaller buddies on my side too waiting to launch out of the water.

So when when you feel the need to scowl at someone because their life doesn't look like yours....think again. Not only is it hurtful to a mom, it is hurtful to kids hearing you say it. They don't understand why you feel like they have to many brothers and sisters. They may like to fight but they are also the first ones to stand up for each other.
Chances are they will also grow up being more respectful than you and having more manors. Review

Product: The Ultimate Gift
Price: $6.99 is a wonderful company that I have gotten to purchase from many times. This time they gave me the chance to review one of their DVD's, The Ultimate Gift. is a company that provides a place to buy movies that are Christian and Family friendly. They have a wide variety of DVD and blu-ray movies to choose from. When you pick a movie you can know you are choosing something wholesome. They are helping bring family time back in a Christian manor, which is such a great thing these days.

The Ultimate Gift is one of the movies or crew got to choose from.  It is about a man named Jason. Jason is what you would call a trust fund baby. He come from a family with lots of money. He has never had to work or do anything in his life to ear his way. This has made him become arrogant and uncaring of anything but himself. His grandfather, Red, and him did not have a good relationship when Red passed away. This movie plays around Red having used a video and series of tasks for Jason to earn his inheritance. I'll leave the details of those for you when you watch the movie. I will say these events lead him to meet a little girl named Emily and her mother. Emily has leukemia and helps Jason reach this goals set by Red in an amazing way. I promise you that the story will keep you in tuned and you will be on your toes through the twists and turns.

I watched this movie with all my kids. I would say this is a good family movie for all. Though small kids may not get the point, my kids did. My kids are 11, 9, and 7 and got the point of the movie. It was a nice family movie night and we all sat to watch. During the movie the kids had lots of commentary about what was going on. It allowed for a good conversation for us after the movie was over. We were able to talk about how important it is to be grateful for what we have and not take it for granted. We also see that we have to learn to do things when we are young so that when we are older we can care for ourselves with out depending on everyone else to do it for us. It was an amazing movie and I will admit I was brought to tears by the end. It was so great to have a movie that was good for us all to watch as a family. So nice not having to hurt and cover eyes or cough to cover things kids shouldn't hear. I really think anyone one of any walk of life would love to see this movie.

Be sure to check FishFlix.Com out on social media as well. 

Also click below and see what my other crew mates had to say about this movie as well as other from Review

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

This girl

I know my last baby had to be a good one. She amazes me everyday. She is so goofy and smiles and laughs all the time.

Thursday, March 10, 2016

Grapevine Studies Review

Birth of John to Jesus' Ministry {Grapevine Studies Review}

Price: $3.00-$27.60 depending on which books you get

Age: Multi Level

Birth of John to Jesus' Ministry {Grapevine Studies Review}

About: Grapevine Studies gave me the chance to review their physical version of The Resurrection: Multi-Level. From the name you can see this is for multi-levels and is great for a family Bible lesson. The program is broken down into 11 weeks worth of lessons which equals 40 days worth of lessons. The main idea of this program is that a passage from the Bible is read and then the child will draw out the verse via stick figures. All of these are then put together into a timeline of events for the kids. The pages are not bound in a book, instead they are pre-hole punched and need to be put into a binder. The stories covered go from Jesus' crucifixion on to his assent into Heaven. The teacher book comes with sample drawings and timelines, lesson notes, memory versus, and review questions with their answers. Once you go over the verse the child then works on drawings and filling out the time line. You continue doing so until the end of the lessons the child should be able to fill out the whole timeline in order to tell it all in a story.

How we used: We used the daily version of the lesson plans. Since we don't always do something the same amount each week, like we switch off every other day on which non-core subject. This allowed us to be able to do our pace. It also only takes 15-20 minutes a day to do. But don't be surprised if the children get interested in a topic and want to talk about it all day.  My kids really enjoyed being able to draw while listening to the readings. I think it really helps kids focused in what they are hearing. They had to listen to the topic to make sure they were drawing it right. Then we had the review questions that I could ask at the end to make sure they got everything out of the reading they should. If they didn't we could go over the answer and we would go back to that part of the reading to show them where it happened. It actually was just as fun for me and the review questions brought some great talks with us.

Each week you start out with day one being a review day, except the first week. Days two and three we work on the student pages, these are the drawings. Day four is a drawing review page. We also worked on the memory verse each day.

This was a great program for us since we have 3 different ages but they were all able to participate.

Be sure to check them out on social media pages as well as seeing what my crew mates had to say. Also they reviewed other levels from Grapevine Studies.



Birth of John to Jesus' Ministry {Grapevine Studies Review}

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Here to Help Learning Review

Here to Help Learning Review

Vendor: Here to Help Learning

Product: Flight 1 Paragraph Writing

Price: $89.99

Age: Grades 1 through 3 and those that are learning paragraphs

Here to Help Learning Review
About: We are using the Flight 1 Paragraph Writing by Here to Help Learning. This product says it is rated for first grade to third grade. It also says that any grade that is learning to write paragraphs would benefit from this program. I received the physical version of this program but there is also an option to do the online version. Beth Mora developed Here to Help Learning. She has also homeschooled herself for 18 years. She developed the program to help teachers and parents teach writing skill in a more fun and easy way. 
The physical set includes the Teacher's Guide, one Student Notebook, and six DVD's. Each of the DVD's contain 5-6 lessons on them. If you have more than one child doing this you will need extra Student Notebook for them. The program is broken down into projects. There are six writing projects total.

              • Project #1 All By Myself (Narrative Writing)
              • Project #2 Heroes Today (Descriptive)
              • Project #3 Good Books Make Me Hungry (Expository)
              • Project #4 Poetry Walk in the Mountains (Poetry)
              • Project #5 Once Upon a Fable (Persuasive)
              • Project #6 My Own Book (Narrative Fiction)
How we used: I used this with my 11 year old. She is above what the suggested age is for the program but she has always had a horrible problem getting the idea of writing full and proper paragraphs. Most of the times are writings are just one big long page. I have tried different ways to get her to understand what a paragraph needs and she will try to write one and then ends up with many incomplete thoughts.  Starting with project #1 which is All By Myself, it is a narrative writing, was really nice since it was easier to come up with things to write. You start with day one watching the video about your project and then take the next couple days to work on the writing lessons and project. 
The lessons are fun and engaging. 
The videos are easy to navigate.  Each lesson is broken down into five parts. They are as follows: 
Pre-Flight checklist- Gathering what you need for the lesson
Flight Check-in- make sure all previous homework is done
Take Off- you play the sentence game and writing warm up.
Full Throttle- This is the working portion of doing the writing process. This is done together or if you are doing group work it is here too.
Fly Solo- wrapping up for lesson. You are doing this part alone.

Having everything all broken down really helps kids not get overwhelmed. I think this is great for kids that need help learning to write paragraphs. This will work with homeschool students, co-ops, or in a class room setting. It works for one or many.

Be sure to check out what my other crew members have to say about this program as well as others. They reviewed this program via the online version as well as the other programs that come after this one for older children and levels. 
Here to Help Learning Review

Thursday, March 3, 2016

Dunlawton Sugar Mill

Address: 950 Old Sugar Mill Rd, Port Orange, FL
Cost: Free
Age: All

Accessibility: Handicap and stroller friendly
I love a good adventure. While on my most recent vacation I was looking for some fun and educational places to take the kids. I try to keep learning going even if we are not at home. We were staying in Daytona Beach and there isn't much to do directly in Daytona, that doesn't cost an arm and a leg, for big families. My kids are not to much into history so we try to make history learning hands on so finding historical sites is something we search for.

During my search I found the Dunlawton Sugar Mill, it is also now a Botanical Garden. It was about 9 miles from our hotel so I was excited. We loaded up and headed out. There were a few people there but luckily it wasn't crowded. You enter into the garden and take a stroll around some beautiful flowers. Once you come to the old sugar mill you will see the huge building that it was. It was once a rock building but as you will see in the story markers it has burned multiple times. They replaced with a steel roof and added nice walkways, that are handicap accessible. There isn't much left to the actual machines but the process of boiling the sugar can in the tubs was so neat. 

It was amazing how they built the fireplaces to suck through the length of the building to heat all the iron pots. Truly amazing how even with the lack of our technology things were done so wonderfully thought out.

You will continue on through the park and see some amazing plants, including a huge patch of elephant ear plants.

The place was also used as an amusement park with the theme of dinosaurs. There are huge cement replicas of them in the park. However in those times amusement parks were not popular so the park fizzled out.

If you are ever looking for an adventure in the area you should really check it out.

Closer shots of the process picture. 

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Zonderkidz Review

Vendor: Zonderkidz
Product: Faith Builders Bible
Price: $24.99
Age: 6 to 9 years old

Zonderkidz provided me the really neat Faith Builders Bible to review. This book is fitting for kids that are 6 to 9 years of age. This is a hardcover book written in NIrV. NIrV is New International Reader's Version of the Bible which is a bit more simplified version of the normal NIV. Seems as though they took the NIV and shortened sentances and used easier words. About on the same grave level as kids in the age range would normally read.  The font is a bigger size for easier reading for the kids. There are twenty four full colored pages of illustrations. These pages use lego blocks and characters to teach about Bible stories. It also includes memory verses for them to learn. These pages are placed where the Bible stories are. You can also have some legos, or other building bricks (they are not affiliated with Lego brand) to recreate the stories.
I have three kids who I let use the Bible. They are 7, 9, and 11. They all really enjoy legos and just recently got into them. I thought this was a great time to have the Bible to join in them while they were in the craze. I let them each look through the Bible, it was no doubt that the fun colorful pages stopped them and peeked their intrest. They wanted to read the stories right away.
Since we still new to the lego world we do not have a ton, or any people, but the kids did try to recreate some of the versus. They were able to make the cross, fish, and lamb shown in this sample page. Allowing them something to do while I read to them helped them focus more on the meaning behind the stories. Once they made them we set them on the counter to help remind us to practice versus.

We really enjoyed the Bible over all. The only thing I think would make it better was some more illustrated papers. I know my 7yo boy loved them but it was hard to get him to explore the rest of the Bible and be able to focus on what the versus were meaning. Or just maybe make the pages of the Bible bolder and add some colors. Even some silhouette bricks behind the words.
I'm sure many Christians would enjoy this Bible for their child. Though maybe having other versions as an option would peak more intrest as well. I enjoy the simplistic writing of this version but some may want to have their version handy so kids can see how it was originally written and use this version as a conversation version to explain the meaning in a better way. The cover is also very inviting and neat to bring in the kids attention to it.
Be sure to check them out on social media sites.


Also see what my fellow crew mates had to say about the Bible.

Faith Builders Bible {Zonderkidz Review}