DISCLAIMER:  I received this complimentary product as a member of the Homeschool Review Crew

There is so much that we can learn, so many ways that we can grow when we are learning music. Having spent many years of my life making music and performing, there was much that was gained from these experiences musically and otherwise. For that reason I am so glad that my two boys have wonderful teachers who inspire them in their learning of the guitar and the drums…Yet my two girls tend to be less interested in developing musical skills.

While I do not want to push this on them, I also am certain of the love they would have for making music if they would just give it a try. So along comes Practice Monkeys offering affordable, virtual training for our whole family with  3 months of classes to any (or all) of the programs that they offer.

This is an amazing and very full program that provides online live and previously recorded, lessons based on the Suzuki Method for violin, piano, cello, and guitar. They also offer a self-defense program which is based on Brazilian Jui-Jitsu wrestling (Gracie University).

Monday through Thursday there are fifteen-minute group lessons for each level of instrument. The students attend the lesson and are expected to also practice independently throughout the week (at least 2x for 15 minutes). Should your students be unable to attend the live classes there are recorded lessons for them to view. They can also access all sorts of helpful resources in their “treehouse.” Since my older girl has days, now and then, where she just doesn’t want to quit practicing and playing, I love that she can head to the “treehouse” and just fill up on all sorts of good things!

For every level there is a checklist of skills and songs that the students should be learning and developing. Students are moved into the next level when they successfully pass an assessment (private, paid for separate from monthly fee) done privately. Of course the instructors are glad to help students to prepare and help determine if it is time for an assessment to be done. This way you can be sure of how your child is progressing and know for sure when it is time to have them move up. I know just saying assessment causes my girl to be a bit anxious so there is always a comfort to knowing that “you’re ready.”

The instructor is Mrs. Van Kleeck: experienced and enthusiastic; bringing over 26 years of experience in teaching via the Suzuki Method, she is so energetic and fun and engaging as she interacts and inspires her students. Miss Sarah believes (as do I) that one must seek virtue in every area of life, and strives to teach in a way that does just that. With a background in Classical and Charlotte Mason Education, 13 years of mothering, and 9 years of homeschooling.

The following classes are currently available:

  • Violin Classes through Book 7 Suzuki
  • Piano Classes through Book 3 Suzuki (Books 4–7 are in development)
  • Guitar through Suzuki Book 2 (Books 3–7 are in development)
  • Cello through Suzuki Book 3 (Books 4–7 are in development)

Practice Monkeys’ program contains everything our kids need to develop musically. This includes: Technique, Poetic Knowledge, Habit Training, Ear Training, Theory and Reading Development, Sight-Singing, and tons and tons of fun! Learning simply MUST be fun!

This program is super simple to get started with – no musical instruction required on your part – Each instrument has a page that tells you exactly what you need so your children can get started making melodies in their hearts. 🙂

My son, using this with his guitar mostly engaged in the “treehouse” videos. He is just not much for musical instruction online – it doesn’t help that he has a teacher he sees on a weekly basis so if he doesn’t feel a need for something he is not very likely to apply himself to it. But he certainly did enjoy exploring the videos and firming up some of his technique. I think his teacher appreciated seeing some extra development as well in his abilities.

My youngest daughter (6) was initially going to explore violin a bit as a friend had offered us one that their son grew out of but unfortunately that was just not to be. Suffice to say she decided to explore the piano a bit along with her older sister. This is a super affordable and flexible way to encourage a love of musical learning in my more hesitant children. Without a doubt, if you are looking for a program that will not only teach musical ability but also engage your children in technique this is definitely what you need.

We will certainly be continuing to use this with our children and perhaps as time allows we will be able to delve in more deeply because there really is so much this program offers. If you just aren’t sure do consider registering for one of their free classes. If that doesn’t hook you, I don’t know what will. 🙂

Practice Monkeys on Social Media:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/PracticeMonkeys/
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC7wOO7WqC5Yk-nID8fhVaiA/videos

Make sure to click on the graphic below to see what other Crew Members thought about this program as well as the different programs that they used!

Online Lessons for Children: Violin, Piano, Cello, Guitar, and Self Defense

Practice Monkeys {Review}

Disclosure: I received this complimentary product through the Homeschool Review Crew.

Anyone else have a deep passion for reading? I know I do. Yet my four kids seem to struggle with really loving reading. My oldest is 16; my youngest is 6. They are all in different places and spaces – this can make it really hard to know what they need – unless you have a really cool program! I really do consider LightSail for Homeschoolers to be exactly that! For this review we received one year of access for all four of our children. While there are a few different options to choose from, we focused on the premium subscription for our family. From reading and writing to vocabulary and fluency this is one of those programs that can make a huge difference in not just what we learn but how we learn it!

Where shall I begin? This is one of those resources that is full of all kinds of amazing things. That said, it is definitely not something my younger kids are able to navigate on their own but my older kids definitely figured it out quickly. This program is This program is an adaptive language arts platform for students from K-12th grades. LightSail for Homeschoolers seeks to build and grow language arts skills in every age and stage our kids are in, using the four pillars of LightSail: reading, writing, fluency, and vocabulary

As our kids work through the content, there are dozens of modules, hundreds of features, all of this content helps to develop the four pillars in them. After all, every one of those is a vital, necessary skill for lifelong learning.

Once we received access to this program we were required to complete an assessment to determine their Lexile level. This is a pretty long assessment so my kids broke it up into a couple days. Once it is completed they are assigned a score and you are then able to assign books to them. As I explored books for each of my kids I appreciated seeing that in some cases I had to approve a book for them to be able to access it. And do they ever have books to choose from!

Lerner Sports! This is recommended for grades 2–5 who are looking to learn and grow their knowledge of various sports. I have a couple boys who love sports. From hockey to martial arts to football – even my daughter enjoyed exploring materials about gymnastics, the olympics and equestrian events!

Love those unit studies? I think these are a fabulous way to encourage some child led learning. They have so many to choose from. Eco-Gardening was just one of the many that made my kids curious! There were curated books and videos for them to explore as they learned about all sorts of things related to gardening – composting to insect control to container gardening and lots more!

Of course you can also do a general search of all their content to see what comes up. My older daughter did that for ballet and for veterinarians – I was quite impressed with the amount of material that came up. There were Ted Talks, audiobooks, regular books as well as interactive books – with parental control I was able to see and approve whatever materials they wanted to explore. They even have Augmented Reality and 360 Images kids can explore (finally a hot air balloon ride – virtually).

LightSail also partners with the World Book Encyclopedia so you have thousands upon thousands of up to date, tested articles you can enjoy. These include fill-in-the-blank assessments, a full dictionary, read-aloud ability, lots and lots of timelines and other related content. You can easily explore any and every area of interest.

There is also an area just for quotations. I especially like to use this for Biblical studies because it provides not only scripture references but also parent/child instructions to help us better guide along the way. As you choose a topic there are also additional, related materials in a sidebar so you can easily read even more should you want to explore all quotations related to “strong emotions” or the “armor of God” to read even more, As one who was diligent for many years in keeping a Commonplace Book, this is one of those areas that is near and dear to my heart.

Are you a fan of memory work? This site has plenty of those for you to choose from – or you can make your own! Premade lists range from Classical to Charlotte Mason style homeschool. As firm believers in the value of memorizing (especially scripture) this is one of those tools that we find invaluable for every one of our kids at every age.

With all of these phenomenal resources at your fingertips, you are bound to see your children not just growing but truly thriving as they learn. As a parent you have so much control over the content your children are able to see and over the assessments they take. There is such an abundance of content to grow curiosity in our kids as they find their passion and develop necessary skills.

Try LightSail for FREE for up to 7 kids and you will get instant access to thousands of exciting books. Sign-up today! 


LightSail for Homeschoolers:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/LightSailEd
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/lightsailed/

Be sure to click on the banner below to see what other members of the Review Crew thought of their experience with LightSail for Homeschoolers.

LightSail for Homeschoolers {Review}

Disclosure: I received this complimentary product through the Homeschool Review Crew.

There is nothing that I enjoy more than sharing some Bible Study time with my kids. When I think of the one thing that they need most of all, it is for the Word of God to be firmly in their hearts and minds. Of course reading can be challenging, some say overwhelming. How can we possibly make it all make sense? Teach Sunday School offers hundreds of printable Bible lessons, games, crafts, & worksheets from the Old & New Testaments. For this review we received pdf downloads of both the OT and NT Bible Breakdowns.

This is a one page subject breakdown for every book of the Bible. As they say, Bible lessons should fun, interesting, & relevant. (never boring). Personally, God’s Word has always been so alive and exciting to me. I want my kids experience that same feeling when they read too!

Teach Sunday School

What exactly are Bible Breakdowns? They are one-page sheets for every single book of the Bible – both the Old and New Testament.

My younger son is very detail oriented, super methodical. So he was very curious to see how some of these chapters that are really long, could possibly fit on one page. He was surprised (a bit delighted too) to see how concisely things were put together. Each sheet includes:

  • the number of chapters
  • author
  • the time covered
  • date written
  • type of of book (prophecy, law, poetry, etc)

As you go read through the Breakdown you find the chapters, and verses listed in order along with a short summary regarding the topic of that chapter and verse(s). Classic Bible stories are highlighted in blue. Each page also includes a list of the most popular verses including their ranking.

My younger son has been working through a video study that goes along with the Book of Proverbs and he really appreciates being able to use this alongside for those time when he isn’t quite certain of exactly what is being taught. He will sometimes express frustration with “so many words” and so again this helps him appreciate the message within each chapter. I always remind him it is useless to read if there is no understanding – here is a wonderful way to help guide them in this area.

Studying the Bible Should be a JOY… Not a CHORE

These pages are so colorful and so very informative. Simplicity can be such a wonderful thing. At the same time these really help our kids (and us) to better see how from Genesis to Revelation it all is woven together. Jesus at the center of it all. Literally. That makes our time in the Word so much more powerful.

One thing we enjoy doing with these as well is using them to help guide our daily reading. For as long as I can remember I have read through my Bible, every year, front to back. I want my children to experience the joy that comes from that and this can be a super way to help our kids get in the habit by tracking their reading each day. Another form of a Bible reading plan!

Teach Sunday School has lots of other great resources (we have quite a few ourselves)to help encourage our children to taste and see how good our God is. I remember reading about the most powerful lessons being the ones that were learned through play – I really feel like these materials al help to bring joy and curiosity into our learning which of course, makes things so much fun!

Teach Sunday School is on Social Media:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SundaySchoolLessons
Instagram: @teachsundayschool
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/biblefun/
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UChwHfenlbCBU_XfzvqCFFPA

Be sure to click on the banner below and read what other members of the Crew thought of the Bible Breakdowns.

Bible Breakdowns {Review}

Disclosure: I received this complimentary product through the Homeschool Review Crew.

My youngest is only six years old but she is quickly developing as a reader and I am excited to see her grow in her love of reading! Reading Kingdom has always been a program that has been dear to my heart; recently we were given one year’s access to their program Story Smarts.

Designed for ages 6-10 this is a great way to help them develop their reading and comprehension skills. It is recommended to complete 2-3 stories a week.

Reading Kingdom's Story Smarts

This program includes 30 picture stories within two levels. Together we read the stories (some days she reads them on her own). Each story is about 15 minutes in length.

Included are activities such as: putting images in order to retell the story, filling in missing words and arranging words to make a sentence. As our children progress through this program they develop greater skills of comprehension and also retelling. There is nothing better than when our kids can share a story they love with a friend!

As the stories become more complex our children begin to recognize the main idea and/or the plot of a story and often they can even predict what is to come. This can make discussions so much more fun as events and experiences in the stories you read and everyday life as well are shared more and more. There is nothing better than good storytelling!

There is also a parent dashboard so you can see how your child is progressing. When they need a little extra assistance, you will know. They can also replay any story if they need (or want) to do so. I know my daughter enjoyed a few of the stories so much she wanted to do them again and again. And once she saw that there were different “grades” she could earn for her work she was even more determined to get the best marks possible on each one.

Reading is such a vital skill; comprehension even more so. These are skills that our children will need in every age and stage of life. I admit to often feeling frustrated feeling like entertainment is stealing the love of learning from our children.

We must be so careful what they put before their eyes and in their ears. I sometimes see my daughter staring off on a screen and I am sure there are some benefits but screen time is just not where I want my children to be. So I love programs like this that give my children a deeper love for reading and comprehending the many stories that are out there.

Reading Kingdom can be found on Social Media:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/readingkingdom
Twitter: https://twitter.com/readingkingdom
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/readingkingdom/
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/readingkingdom/
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/ReadingKingdom

Click on the banner below to read with other Crew Members are saying about the various products they reviewed with their families:

Reading Kingdom {Review}

Disclaimer: I received this complimentary product as a member of the Homeschool Review Crew.

There is nothing better than materials that “empower the mind.” That is exactly what you get when you are using any one of the awesome, fun materials that The Critical Thinking Co.™ offers. For this review we were so thrilled to receive a physical copy of their workbook: Science Vocabulary Crossword Puzzles recommended for grades 4-6.

Whatever age and stage your children are in, this company has something that they will just love! From books to software there are materials to grow in reading, writing, math, science, social studies, critical thinking and even test prep. They have supplemental workbooks and full curriculum available as well for students from preschool through 12th grade. Every one of their materials is high quality, designed to engage our children in developing their skills in critical thinking and problem solving.

This little book contains 25 crossword puzzles that cover the following topics:

  • Living Things
  • Weather
  • Human Body
  • Inventions and Discoveries
  • Solar System
  • Earth’s Land, Water and Resources
  • Energy, Matter, Forces
  • Scientists and Science

Aren’t these some amazing topics to explore? I dare say, this is a fabulous way to encourage those journeys along the rabbit trail. One of the keys to the study of science is an understanding of the definitions of the vocabulary words that are in the lessons. As we work through these puzzles we not only have fun way but also reinforce and expand what we are learning in the different areas of science. This is also a wonderful way to encourage our children in their reference skills and even develop an interest in different areas of science.

The crossword puzzles are all organized by topic and in the back of the book you can find a list of vocabulary words and answers for each puzzle just in case you need a little help. Of course the clues provided (and the box of word options provided) definitely helped. I don’t think we looked for any answers in the back of the book – in most cases my kids had a ton of fun searching things up online to see what they could find.

This continues to be a great motivation for exploring science in our home!

I cannot say enough how amazing this company is. We have used so many of their materials with our kids (who range in age from 6-16) for math, writing, geography and more! You can even sign up for a free weekly puzzle from Pre-K to grade 8. These can be something extra fun to enjoy in your email.

“Education would be much more effective if its purpose was to ensure that by the time they leave school every boy and girl should know how much they do not know, and be imbued with a lifelong desire to know it.” – William Haley, British Editor

Go check out their website; it is full of free resources so that you are able to “try before you buy.” There is an Online Playroom allowing you to a variety of brain building games for all ages. There is also a critical thinking quiz you can take to see if your skills are better than a 6th grader? 🙂

The Critical Thinking Co. on Social Media:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TheCriticalThinkingCo
Twitter: https://twitter.com/criticalthinks
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/thecriticalthinkingco/
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/criticalthinks/
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCsVEVNa6UpVqXxo_t5sbb7Q

Critical thinking skills are so very important in so many ways. Be sure to click on the banner below and read reviews from other Crew Members who were blessed to review a variety of materials from this company.

How to Homeschool Vocabulary with Vocabulary Virtuoso 1

The Critical Thinking Co. {Review}

Disclosure: I received this complimentary product through the Homeschool Review Crew.

What can I say? Some days it feels like we are in a constant battle with math. My skills have never been very good – I dread teaching it for that very reason – yet here we are enjoying our math and growing in our skills, all thanks to Math Essentials (again). This time around we were blessed to receive Basic Math Skills Rescue Parts 1 and 2. Truly, I think this is our favorite of all the math programs we have tried!

Book 1 includes:

  • Whole Numbers and Integers
  • Fractions
  • Decimals and Percents

Book 2 includes:

  • Geometry
  • Problem Solving
  • Pre-Algebra

The pages are full of helpful hints and plenty of step by step examples.

Author and instructor Rick Fisher is a winner of the prestigious “Intel Innovations in Teaching Award” as well as the Glenn W. Hoffmann Exemplary Awards Program for Silicon Valley in California. His program is functional, easy-to-use and understand; this program has shown to improve multiple grade levels with just one year’s use.

As my son (12) becomes more advanced we try to focus, not just on worksheets and formulas but also on those additional skills we sometimes forget about: critical thinking, conceptual understanding, problem solving skills, computational fluency – all of these are discussed as well within the pages of this book. How all of these things can apply to life. And each lesson is made up of three parts which can be completed in 15-20 minutes a day.

Online video tutorials are always appreciated – my son says he likes the no-nonsense approach to things – there is nothing silly, no bells and whistles just straight instruction on the math being done. My son likes to watch the videos before he begins working through any problems. Whether it is a refresher or something new, he appreciates being able to see exactly what he is supposed to do. The methods used in the videos and the workbook pages too really, are a great fit for his very meticulous nature. 🙂

We are slowly working through Book 1 – looking forward to eventually beginning Book 2 – the format is the same regardless of the material being taught. There is a glossary included in both books as well as an answer key – Of course there are also handy resources to use as you become more acquainted with symbols and equivalents and the like.

Without a doubt this book and the online videos included will be with us for some time to come. Without a doubt, this program is simple and the teaching is easy to follow as each lesson builds upon the one that came before. We have not made it to the final test but I am certain that by the time he gets there, it will be a piece of cake.

I often find it can be very helpful (in math especially) to go back to the basics now and then before attempting to master other things. This is helping immensely to strengthen my son’s skills in the basic things so that when he is ready we can move onto other things without fear.

It is about so much more than just “getting the right answers” and “passing the test”. There is great value to be had in any program that helps our children to learn and apply all they learn, to real life situations. As we learn we grow in ability and in confidence so that they know that they can succeed not just in math but in all things.

Basic Math Skills Rescue {Review}

Disclosure: I received this complimentary product through the Homeschool Review Crew.

My kids will tell you, reading is the “one thing” this mom takes very seriously. Again and again, I tell my children, if you can develop strong reading and comprehension skills, there is nothing you cannot do. Reading is the foundation upon which we build everything else. For that reason, I am always thrilled to find programs like Reading Eggs and Mathseeds from Reading Eggs to help my younger ones have fun while they grow!

This is not the first experience we have had as a family with the Reading Eggs program. I think my oldest (now soon to be 16) started reading in part, thanks to this program. So this is one of those things that I really enjoy having as a part of our home learning. I mean, when learning can be this fun, why not?

My youngest daughter was so thrilled to find out that she would be using this one again! Our last experience with this she and her older sister were using Fast Phonics – Watching them compare progress and compete with each other was to get to the next level was entertaining to say the least. Nothing wrong with a little friendly competition, right? They even provide progress reports so you can see exactly what they are doing and where, if at all, they need a little more help. Since my daughter will often sit down on her own and work on this program, it is certainly appreciated that I can still know where she is at.

Since it had been awhile since we used this, I was grateful for the placements tests for both Reading Eggs and Math Seeds so we could be sure to get her started in the right place. Once the test is completed, all she has to do is follow the path on her map as she works through all sorts of fun activities that help her grow her skills in reading and in math.

I know my little lady really loves easy this whole program is to use. She is quite independent! Being able to switch from math to reading to phonics all by herself really makes her feel so good. The fact the lessons are all super fun definitely encourages learning. Some days, truthfully, I have to tell her that it is time to be done. If that isn’t the sign of a fabulous program, I don’t know what is.

One of her absolute favorites right now are the Driving Tests. She can choose from sight words, Letters and Sounds or Content Words and race around the track. Wht a fun way to practice some basic skills!

There is also a section full of puzzles that can be fun to play. There is the Puzzle of the Day or you can choose from a bunch of options on the gallery. Practice color recognition, or have fun with What is It? Animal recognition is fun too. There is a timer at the bottom of the screen – see how many you can get right. 🙂

For your little ones (ages 2-4) they can enjoy Reading Eggs Junior and work their way up to Reading Eggs and Math Seeds (both are recommended for ages 3-9). Fast Phonics is recommended for ages 5-10 and the Reading Eggspress is an amazing treat for older kids (ages 7-13). There really is something here for ever age and stage or reading.

This is such an amazing program for learning and reinforcing the many skills our kids need to learn and grow. I cannot say enough how much fun my little lady is having in all the different areas that are a part of this program. Be sure to check it out – start your free 30 day trial and see for yourself how fun learning can be!

Reading Eggs is on Social Media:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/readingeggsUSCA
Twitter: https://twitter.com/readingeggs
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/readingeggs/
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC8ED-7e2xA3fxgrM7Wq2XGQ

Click on the banner below to read what other members of the Review Crew thought and how they used this program in their home!

Learn to Read with Reading Eggs

Reading Eggs {Review}

I received this complimentary product through the Homeschool Review Crew.

For I time, my oldest son was involved in a local speech and debate homeschool group. One of the things I loved about them was how they wove the news into different activities assignments helping our kids to look and see things going on in the world around them. When we were no longer able to do this I pondered how to continue encouraging my children to get their daily (r weekly sometimes) dose of the new Needless to say, it was with much enthusiasm that we grabbed the opportunity to review WORLD Watch. This includes 10-minute daily news videos from a Christian perspective, a perfect opportunity to explore all that WORLD Watch includes and to get my kids curious and involved in exploring life in the world they live in.

Meet Brian Basham, program director and host. He lives in Charlotte, North Carolina with his wife and two daughters. He began broadcasting over 15 years ago at NBC in El Paso, and has been a meteorologist and news anchor since then, in Tucson, Memphis, and Charlotte. Fun facts: He went to college on a trombone scholarship. He also worked as a Jungle Cruise skipper at Disneyland! He is full of enthusiasm and so very engaging (as is the whole team that is a part of World Watch.

For this review we received a six month subscription for our whole family to WORLD Watch. My boys, from the start, enjoy their 10-minute newscast, every day, on the news presented from around the world, with a Biblical focus. Since how we see things really matters (we have been studying a lot about worldviews) this is quite encouraging to find!

Some of the stories are a little heavy – talking about the Taliban. Others are lots of fun – using legos to explain budgets. Choose from headlines, news briefs, and feature stories. There are so many good ones to explore! Go into the archives and bam – now you’re doing history! 🙂

My boys especially appreciate all the stories that cover sports and technology and science. Did you know that Google Tech helped a visually impaired marathon runner? Signature Science always has so many amazing scientific stories about studies that have been done, are being done…think of squirrels.

Some videos make you hungry:

Others might make you want to hurl:

Some of the stories are so fascinating and lead you down all sorts of rabbit trails: the sculptor of Wall Street’s famous charging bull dies. Oh the places you can go as you explore the story behind the statue and the sculptor and the bulls!

There is also What in the Word? This is super cool for my younger son who ponders the reason for something being the word that it is. Here we can explore the meaning of certain words. And this is lots of fun!

So grateful to World Watch for allowing us the opportunity to explore all the good things they have to offer! This isn’t just keeping up on news but also a lesson in thinking Biblically, discerning things well. And there are so many ways this can help us to grow and learn in a plethora of topics of all sorts! Materials like this are such a blessing for helping us learn to see and think critically about the things taking place in the world around so that we can properly watch and pray!

WORLD Watch on Social Media:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/worldwatchshow
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/worldwatchnews/
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCLhlnq_RLfpSdQ8Fm6VEEjw

WORLD Watch has a 30-Day FREE Trial also so you can try it out and see if it is a great fit for your family!

Click on the banner below and read reviews from other members of the Crew

WORLD Watch News {Review}

Disclaimer: I received this complimentary product through the Homeschool Review Crew.

My oldest turns 16 in a few weeks and this last year, academically, has been a real struggle with him. He isn’t sure exactly what he wants to do after high school, he is considering trade school right now but I want to be sure he is ready for whatever direction he feels God calling him to. So I was actually glad to be given the opportunity to review ACT Mom Online Class from ACT Mom. We don’t always know exactly where we will go but we do believe in the value of preparation that comes from something like this. And we have access for one full year; since my son works more slowly as of late, that is very important to us that we have plenty of time.

This whole class is online and self-paced so students can complete the four courses included in as much or as little time as they want. Included in this course are thirteen hours worth of videos within four different courses. There is one for reading, math, science, and English. Once registered there are also materials that are shipped directly to the student. The complete class includes a binder full of the materials you need to go along with the videos. The same materials are also downloadable in her class; there are lots of tests for students to complete for practice. I personally find this to be a great help in learning strategic learning as well as creating some helpful habits. Want to see inside?

Can I tell you how much we really appreciate the binder that was sent to us as a part of this program? It includes all we need to work through the program: graphing paper and ACT practice tests in sheet protectors. There was also a pencil pouch with a dry erase marker (for taking the practice tests in the sheet protectors), eraser, and sticky tabs. Everything we need to get started right away. There is also an answer key along with scoring instructions so you can score their tests and see how they are progressing as they work through these courses. 

Each session includes videos, a quiz, and additional resources should students want to continue their studies. Her videos are very engaging (like having coffee with your professor friend) as she walks you through the information, casually defining terms and relating them to everyday life experiences. Upon completion of each course, she links approximately eight practice tests for students to complete. There are so many opportunities for students to practice actually taking these tests.

One of the things that really got my son was the “why.” She states in her video how important it is for students to “know their why.” I love that because I believe there is so much power in that. On those hard days, it is good for us to remember why we are doing the work we are. So many of us can go so much further when we have one of these as well.

Never a fan of tests myself, I appreciate the honesty which she shares with students as she explains the purpose of these tests and the benefits that come from being studious in them. She also speaks a great deal about the need for organization which is another thing that is so important (and not just when studying for a test).

She also teaches how to read, how to discern necessary information from that which is perhaps misleading to best find the correct answers. So much of this has to do with learning to see those concepts that are repeated; how to have a strategy in your test taking that will help you to have success. Again, an additional benefit in gaining critical thinking skills within this course. Having taken these courses long ago myself, I certainly remember how confusing the wording can be sometimes. How to read, how to think on these things can make a big difference!

This is definitely one of those programs that contains so many benefits beyond just studying for a standardized test. As my son works through the courses that were included in this bundle, I can see how he is gaining more understanding and comprehension in regards to digesting information.

My oldest son tends to be very wary of academic materials; he is very practical and purposeful in what he does so if he cannot relate something to his “right now” he tends to need a lot of encouragement to complete it. Since he started these courses he has been consistent with working through the program. He appreciates the reality of what is taught and how the information is being presented. This seems to be helping him gain some better study skills as well as some more consideration about what his “why” shall be.

You can purchase the bundle of all four courses or you can pick and choose which ones you feel are best for your family. There are definitely many benefits to this course for our older students whether they have a plan or not for after high school. In my opinion, it is always good for us to keep our options open so that whatever we determine to do, we have at least a bit of the way paved. I sure wish this course would have been around when I was test taking because the insight and wisdom shared in this course is so valuable!

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The ACT Mom {Review}

Disclosure: I received this complimentary product through the Homeschool Review Crew.

I have been known to use the phrase, “It’s all Greek to me” now and then. While I would love to learn Greek, there are some things that, I admit, I am just not comfortable diving into! Greek being one of them. So imagine how thrilled I was, when I had the opportunity to review It’s NOT Greek to Me! from Ready to Teach. We received the Instructor’s Manual, a USB Flash drive with PowerPoint programs providing step-by-step instruction for each lesson, and also a Student Book. The books we received are softcover physical books; each one with 120+ pages.

I have one child in particular who is always asking, why a word is what it is. For this reason he did some studies in Latin a few years ago. Now it is time to dig into the Greek to satisfy his curiosity. In fact, he informed me recently that, about 60 percent of all English words have Greek or Latin roots – when you include the vocabulary of sciences and technology, the figure rises to over 90 percent. Pretty awesome I think!

So where do you start when you are beginning to learn Greek? This is an amazingly simple program to use – just open the books and start learning! The very first section (there are 5 sections in all) covers the background and suggested lessons plan for the morphemes lessons. There are also some really good ideas for creating a display (visuals can really help the learning process, right?).

This course is about so much more than just obtaining a Greek vocabulary. This is a program that combines reasoning, analysis, speech presentation, reading strategies and using the dictionary (am I the only one who gets excited about that?). The focus of this program is on knowledge and assessment as well as community and individual learner. Whether the student is a visual, auditory or tactile/kinesthetic learner these lessons involve them all.

“Research demonstrates that our brains learn and remember more with paper and pencil writing than with keyboarding.”

There is little that is more encouraging to me than a program that has a page entitled, “Weekly Assignments in the Proverbial Nutshell.” As we have been slowly remodeling inside our house, as I have been slowly, trying to minimize our stuff, I have a greater appreciation for materials that I can open up and start learning with.

The Student book is approximately 112 pages; these pages have lots of fun activities to help grow understanding that lasts. There are twelve lessons in all; each one incorporates from 15 to 22 Greek morphemes, lessons building upon one another. The crossword puzzles were a fast favorite of ours. There are also some passages to read words being learned in their context.

I will admit we had some difficulty with the USB drive since we do not own Microsoft Office Powerpoint.  We did using a few other other powerpoint programs we found but unfortunately none of them were able read the drive – including Open Office, which is what we use mostly.  I did sign up for the free trial of Microsoft Office so that I could use the lessons on the thumb drive but once the trial ends, since we will not be purchasing the program, I fear we will not be able to access the slides for these lessons anymore.

We do plan to continue with this, perhaps using lessons more slowly than the recommended five days a week. I am looking forward to completing this program with my son. Perhaps this will even lead us into a deeper learning of Greek language as well. I can also see us going through this program a second time since the readings and activities really are such wonderful ways to further cement learning.

Perhaps the best thing about this course is how simple and gentle it guides you through the many morphemes. With a variety of activities and tools, whatever style of learning your student may be best suited to, this program has something for them.  This is about so much more than simply learning Greek – gain a greater vocabulary, stronger analytical skills and watch as they learn how to recognize and access the knowledge they have gained from their studies.

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Learn Greek Vocabulary with Ready to Teach

It’s NOT Greek to Me! {Review}