Monday, November 22, 2010

TOS Review: Christian Kids Explore Chemistry

By: Bright Ideas Press
Number of lessons: 30
Number of Pages: 384 pages
Price: $34.95

What is it?
Christian Kids Explore Chemistry is an exciting and fun science curriculum created for grades 4–8.  There are 5 units, broken down into 30 lessons.  Within this book you will find, * fun hands-on activities, * unit reviews, * chemistry terms, notations, and rules, * coloring pages, * a supplemental book list, * and more. 

Here is a glimpse of what you can find in each unit.
Unit 1: Introduction to Chemistry, Chemistry Tools, Matter, Elements, Mixtures and Compounds

Unit 2: Atoms, Atomic Number, Atomic Mass, Periodic Table, Molecules

Unit 3: Chemical Bonds, More Chemical Bonds, Formulas, Naming Compounds, Reactions, Acids, Bases, Salts

Unit 4: Solids and Liquids, Gases, Gas Laws, State Change, Solutions

Unit 5: Hydrocarbons, Alkanes, Alkenes, Alkynes, AlcOHols, Esters, Biochemistry

What did I like about it?
I love that each lesson is short and easy to understand.  We are having a lot of fun completing the experiments.  Both my daughters enjoy the coloring pictures as well.  When I told my oldest daughter we would be reviewing a chemistry book, she was a little frightened.  But, once she was able to see what the curriculum was all about, she got excited to dive in and get started.

What I did NOT like about it?
Generally in my reviews I would talk about the things I did not like about a curriculum.  I can honestly say there isn't anything I dislike about Christian Kids Explore Chemistry.

Would I buy it?

ABSOLUTELY!  We really enjoyed this Science curriculum! I hope you will, too

If you would like to purchase Christian Kids Explore Chemistry for your classroom, click HERE.
If you have multiple children you may want to purchase the Activity Book.  By doing so, you will eliminate the hassles of trying to photocopy pages from the book.  Bright Ideas Press has taken all the reproducible pages and turned them into a printable digital download.  This allows you to print as many copies of the Review-its, Wrap-ups, Coloring pages, Activity and Experiment forms, as you need.  The Activity Book is available to only $12.95

Be sure to check out what my fellow TOS Crew Members have to say.

Disclaimer: I’m an independent contractor for The Old Schoolhouse Magazine Crew. I received Christian Kids Explore Chemistry from Bright Ideas Press in exchange for my honest review.

Friday, November 19, 2010

TOS Review:

KB Teachers
$29 for 12 months or $49 for two years
Format: Online website

What is it?
KBTeachers is a one-click online website for printable worksheets and activities all ages, created for teacher, parents, and students. 

Description from site:
"KBTeachers brings the best the web can deliver to you and your students -- It is the one-stop destination for teachers and parents who are always on the lookout for new and engaging 21st century teaching tools and materials."

Why opt for a PREMIUM subscription?
There are many benefits to purchasing the premium membership.
* No watermarks
* No annoying ads taking up the webpage 
* Large selections of educational resources - from ABC fun to 12th grade Social Studies.
* Answer Keys
* Activities online or off - At home, at school or in study hall
* FREE Support 24/7
* Updated weekly
* Instant access - nothing to download, 
* Decorate your Blogs, websites, etc with fun clipart and graphics
* and MORE.

What did I like about it:
I love that I can go to one website and find almost anything I'm in need of for my daughters.  If I'm unable to find what I'm looking for, I can contact KBTeachers and request it.  If they don't have it available, they will create it. 

What I did NOT like about it:
I did not like that there wasn't a search option.  I feel it is much easier to search for something on a site when there's a search box to assist me in my hunt.  KBTeachers purposely left the search box function off their site.  In the FAQ's it says, "Is there a search feature? No. We believe that on a well designed website you should easily find your way around and find what you need in 3 clicks or less. Gone are the days of searching endlessly! KBTeachers saves you time and money. In the event that you do not find what you are looking for, please contact us and we will get back to you within 24 to 48 hours."

Would I purchase a subscription?
I have mixed feelings about whether I would or not, but I'm leaning towards yes.  $29.00 for a one year subscription is fairly inexpensive and it would eliminate the stress of searching the internet for activites, worksheets, and such, I'm in need of.  If the subscription cost was less, I would definitely say yes.   

If you would like to purchase a subscription with KBTeachers for your home or classroom, click HERE.

Check out what my fellow TOS Crew Members have to say about

Disclaimer: I’m an independent contractor for The Old Schoolhouse Magazine Crew. I received a 2 year subscription to in exchange for my honest review.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

TOS Review - The Write Foundation

The Write Foundation  
Number of lessons: 30

What is it? The Write Foundation is a writing curriculum for homeschool students (in-home or co-op) designed as a "grab-it-and-go" curriculum.  It is available in three different levels in-order to teach mastery.

Level 1: Sentence to Paragraph Writing Suggested Ages: 11-13 
Level 2: Paragraph Writing (Suggested Ages: 12-15)
Level 3: 
Essay Writing (Suggested Ages: 14-17) I choose Paragraph Writing (level 2) for my review.

Description from site:
Many writing curricula focus on the different types of writing, such as creative writing, story writing, poetry writing, persuasive writing, argumentative writing, informative writing, descriptive writing, book writing, fiction writing, novel writing, but the basic foundation of writing is assumed. The Write Foundation begins with the writing process, how a student formulates a topic, then a thesis, then supporting points, and by incremental teaching drills in the basics. In most grammatical subjects, we have found that failure is almost totally because the basics have not been learned.
The Write Foundation writing curriculum is a result of 8 years of successfully teaching homeschooled students in a one-day-per-week co-op setting. It has been adapted for a homeschool and used by numerous homeschooling parents to give their own children the tools of how to quickly organize and write an essay with excellence.

What did I like about it:
I like that this curriculum is designed to teach writing piece by piece.  In level two, the students begin with learning how to create block outlines, and in the end they will have learned how to construct proper 5 paragraph essays.  The students learn how to - * take brief notes, * write proper sentences using good quality adjectives, adverbs, and descriptive verbs, * write detailed paragraphs with good introductory, supporting, and concluding sentences, * sequence order, * indent, proper type form, etc, * and SO much more. You can view the syllabus here.
My daughter dislikes handwriting, but she does enjoy typing.  So, she was thrilled when she learned TWF requires completed assignments to be type and not handwritten.  I'm thankful I've heard very little complaining during write class, using this curriculum.

What I did NOT like about it:
I had a hard time in the beginning trying to understand how to use the curriculum.  I feel the directions are not clear enough for easy understanding.  The introduction on the website, does states that it is best to spend 1-2 hours prior the first instructional day reading through the overview in order to fully understand how the curriculum works, and to be prepared to grab-n-go.  Although, I feel if the how-to instructions where a bit more clear cut, it would be less stressful and smooth sailing during the class time.  However, I will say that after slowly working through the first few lessons, we eventually got into the rhythum of how the curriculum works, and then it was pretty easy to follow.

Who could use this and would I buy it?
I feel The Write Foundation is a great writing curriculum for any parent who wants to give their children a solid foundation in writing.  I give it thumbs up and I would definitely purchase this writing curriculum for my own children.  I'm greatly to have been chosen to review this product.

If you would like to purchase The Write Foundation for your classroom, click HERE.  Be sure to check out what my fellow TOS crew members have to say about The Write Foundation.

If you're interested, there's a yahoo forum available.

Disclaimer: I’m an independent contractor for The Old Schoolhouse Magazine Crew. I received The Wrtite Foundation (lessons 1-15) in exchange for my honest review.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Fit Mommy Friday - Week 1 Update

I should have posted this update yesterday, but I haven't had time until now.  (I actually should be working on review I have due next week.)
I didn’t reach all my goals as I had hoped, but I feel over all I did a pretty good job this week.

: I met my goal of 70 oz most days. However, drinking so much water makes me feel incredibly full all day, which leaves very little room for food. Not sure if that’s good or bad, haha :-)

Nightly vitamins: I remembered to take them every night, but one.

Not eating late at night: I did ok with this most of the week. When I did eat later at night, I was sure to eat only fruits :- )

Exercise: I failed at sticking to a 4 day, 30 minute minimum, most days. But, I feel I definitely made up for it yesterday and today. Yesterday (Friday) I worked out for 30 minutes with the Biggest Loser – Cardio Blast DVD, and then went for a 3 mile run. Today my oldest daughter and I ran our very 1st 5k! During this new adventure today, I learned two things - 1) there’s definitely a very good reason why they call it Hillsborough. My Oh My, there were an incase amount of large hills! and 2) I was told that the road track we ran today is the LARGEST track in North Carolina!  I felt defeated that I couldn’t run the 5k (3.106 miles) in the same amount of time as I ran 3 miles yesterday, but the 5k road track had a LOT more hills to contour than where I normally walk. Yesterday’s run was completed in 22 minutes, but today’s 5k was completed in 45 minutes, which I was told was pretty amazing for my 1st 5K, expecially on the track we ran. (Plus, it was 40 degrees outside, very windy, and a little rainy.) All in all, I really enjoyed the run and will definitely do it again!! 

Weightloss: I'm not sure if I've lost any weight, as I don't own a scale.  My hubby won't let me own one, because I'm addicted to what it says.  However, whenever I go to my parents, I make a beeline to their scale :-)  I doubt it's has actually moved any, since I'm having a hard time staying away from cheese and margarita pizza. YUM!!     

I'm hoping I can do much better this next week!  Good luck to all the other wonderful ladies who are also involved in the FMF :-)

Thursday, November 4, 2010

FREE online freezer cooking classes

For a very long time I’ve wished I could master the ability of what is called Freezer Cooking. The premise is to cook meals in advance and freeze them for later, quick access. However, for one reason or another, I’m perpetually messing something up, because they NEVER turn out right once removed from the freezer and then cooked. Well, Malia Russell over at Homemaking 911 has shared with her readers about her friend Shelley, who is offering FREE online video lessons all about freezer cooking. Each video is broken down into step-by-step lessons to show us how to successfully use our freezer to help us make meal preparation easy.

I signed up earlier in the week, but I've only had time to view a couple of Shelley’s videos.  I’ve enjoyed what I’ve learned thus far. There are a handfull of videos available so far. If you’re interested, go check her out at One Roast Vegetable.  The more people that sign up to watch her videos, the more videos she'll make :-)

I receive Malia’s newsletters and have enjoyed watching and learning from Shelley’s videos. So, I wanted to share with ya’ll. Enjoy!!

Monday, November 1, 2010

Fit Mommy Friday - Commitment

Have any of you heard of the Fit Mommy Challenge? It was created by Denise over at Chai Mommy, with the help of Mrs. White at The Legacy of Home. I have decided to jump on board and join the others participating in the 10 week Fit Mommy Challenge. It officially began October 25th and ends December 31st. However, I’m a little late in the game, so my challenge will be 9 weeks, beginning today November 1st.  

My goals for the next 9 weeks are:

1. Workout in some form or fashion at least 4 days a week for no less than 30 minutes. My ultimate goal is tone, baby, tone! and maybe loss about 5-10 lbs.   
2. To STOP eating unhealthy foods so late at night.
3. To bump up my water intake to at least 70 oz of water a day.
4. To remember to take my vitamins at night and not just in the morning.
5. and of course to eat more fruits and veggies.

Here's to a healthier me!! Wish me luck!
If you would like to join in, step on over to Chai Mommy to read about the guidelines, and then swing over to The Legacy of Home to view/print a 10 week check-list Mrs. White has created for us all.

Check back Friday to see how I did my first week :-)
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