Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Wordless Wednesday Grandma is turning 93

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We had a party for my Grandma's upcoming 93rd Birthday which is actually on June 28th. She had so much fun blowing out her candles, and did a great job doing it too.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Let's Travel the World With Memoria Press Geography! Schoolhouse Review Crew Review 2013 #hsreviews #hsgeography #homeschool

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        We were recently sent Geography I from Memoria Press, as our next Schoolhouse Crew Review. My boys really enjoy learning about other Countries and Cultures so I was thrilled to have been chosen. Geography I is geared for grades 4+, with a realistic age range of 4th -8th, but having used it for my 8th and 9th graders I can see where this can go into High School as well.

    We were sent the entire Geography I package that includes for $48.00
                          Geography I Text
                          Geography I Workbook
                          Geography I Teacher Guide
                          United States Review Student
                          United States Review Key, Quizzes, and Tests

   Now we are not a classical homeschool by definition, but we dabble in just about anything that catches our eye or peeks our curiosity. Memoria Press is a traditionally classical curriculum company that incorporated Biblical learning into their curriculum. Their curriculum is very basic looking on the outside but packed full of information on the outside. At first glance my opinion of this was that it reminded me of traditional classroom learning materials. Upon opening it I was pleasantly surprised by the Biblical mentioning that is sprinkled throughout the readings. I appreciate any company that incorporates the Bible into their studies.

     The books focus on the Middle East, North Africa and Europe, there is a text portion for each country within the area. We read the text together this covered the ancient and modern histories of each country and then the boys did the coordinating workbook lessons. There were some questions to answer and some fill in the blank worksheets, the boys had to write the Country's capitol, it's ancient name, and some fun facts and then they were asked to label important places on a map. The United States review is intended to review what students would have learned in the previous course from Memoria Press. Even though we have done our fair share of studying our home country the good ole USA we did the review to just make sure we were keeping our facts straight. In my opinion you could use Geography I without doing the review for the United States and your kids would do just fine, in other words it could serve quite well as a stand alone product.

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          We covered about a country a day and worked on this 3 days a week since our load is lighter now that it is Summer. The curriculum shared all of the information we needed to learn about the countries covered in their books, my boys only complaint is that it is just book work and no hands on learning, can you tell they are totally used to our homeschool life and now expect all of our work to include hands on learning. Boy are they in for a rude awakening as we dig deeper into High School and it is more work and less playing(hands on). I am glad we got to use this curriculum as it helps us keep a little classical in our more eclectic homeschool array of curriculum. There is so much offered by Memoria Press, for instance Prima Latina which some of the crew picked as their choice, you can see all of their classical offerings on the Memoria Press website as well as check out the crew reviews by clicking on the banner below.


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Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Christianity Cove: 100 Simple Service Projects and Bullying and the Bible Schoolhouse Review Crew Review 2013

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                 Christianity Cove offers a vast array of teaching topics that are geared towards teaching groups of children. There were several of their titles that caught my attention and I was excited to have the opportunity to choose 2 of them for my family to review. The first one I chose was Teach Kids to Serve; 100 Simple Service Projects  geared to kids ages 4 and up and the next a topic that hits very close to home, Bullying and the Bible; 12 Lessons for Kids ages 5-16. Each of these sell for $29.95 for a PDF download, but for a limited time if you are one of the first 250 to order you can get your copy for only $19.95, so act fast.

   Let me start with 100 Simple Service Projects, I am always on the lookout for service projects for the kids to do and also for us as a family. Now service projects vary in many ways, one being it can be doing something for others physically like helping mow their lawn or weed their garden, or it can be holding a fundraiser to help and organization in need. This can be a local organization or one far away overseas. I have tried to lead my kids by example, but they are always asking for help to come up with their own service projects and I thought this would be a great place for them to start. This way they can once again work on their independence. My kids know that I always donate products that I sell to help with a charity raffle, usually for friends that are holding fundraisers for various causes. I always offer to lend a hand to anyone that may need it, for instance running family or friends who do not drive to their doctor appointment or to get groceries. Obviously kids cannot do that, so what can they do? This is the perfect helper for getting them started. Not only does it offer suggestions of ideas to help but teaches the kids how to start small and close to home and then build up from there.

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     This is done by breaking service into 5 categories.
  1. Service to the family
chores, being kind and lending a helping hand.

  2.Service to your neighbors
taking their trash out, doing yard work, walking their dog, organizing a neighborhood yard sale.

  3. Service to the Community, this section is subdivided into 6 more categories
        a. Serving the Elderly
        b.Services for Children
        c.Services for Animals
        d.Services for the Environment
        e.Services for Wildlife
        f.Services to Community Shelters

  4.Services to Large Charities in the USA or Overseas
This section contains a list of 18 child friendly organizations, for instance for us we always send boxes for Operation Christmas Child, we sponsor children from World Vision, but there are so many more  and we are glad to have a handy list to refer to when we want to do more in that area.

   5.Service of a Child's Own Design
This section highlights ways children have started their own charitable organizations. I can see at least one of my children getting to this point in the not so distant future.

   I want my kids to want to serve not because they have to, the education system makes community service a requirement of graduation, now this is a good thing do not get me wrong but I find it sad that the majority of today's generation doesn't serve just because their heart leads them to. I want my kids to want to give because they feel led to do so not because they are being forced to. Now as much as an parent hopes and prays that their child is a naturally born giver, that does not happen. However with some help it should not be hard to help steer them that way. I do admit that one of my children has a more giving heart than the others but that does not mean that the other 2 do not want to be givers, they just need a little more help and guidance. I have seen improvements in this as we have continued to use this e-book to help us start small and move up to bigger things. Some things we were already doing like I mention above, but I feel they could actually be doing more small things on a daily basis.

   This is where I see changes happening, Taylor has been offering to do more chores around the house, even mow the lawn, now if you know Taylor this is a huge improvement. Nick has been spending more time with Alyx playing ball, and just chatting, this is a milestone as they have very different interests and do not always see eye to eye. Alyx has been offering his help to fellow campers whether they need help setting up their camper or need help fixing things. He is very knowledgeable and he is learning to use his talents for good. It makes me so proud when I hear people comment on what fine young men my boys are. This helps to reassure me that I am doing a good job as a Mom and Teacher. We will continue to use 100 Simple Service Projects to continue on this journey of service.

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   Now we move onto a more somber topic, and one that hits very close to home for this family. While we had played with the notion to homeschool for many years, we finally made the plunge in 2010 when we were watching Alyx struggle with anxiety and panic attacks about going to school. Little did we know at the time that the root of it all was that he was being bullied. Having Asperger's Syndrome leads to some distinct social differences with these kids that unfortunately often leaves them vulnerable to bullies. When Alyx was younger he often had interests that were not socially "acceptable" for boys his age, he liked cooking and baking and scrapbooking. The sad thing is these are all things he loved doing and he was proud of his accomplishments and shared with others. This led to even more bullying. It was our fear of what this was doing to our son's self esteem that prompted us to pull him and Taylor who also has Asperger's and homeschool. I wanted them to have the freedom to pursue their interests whatever they may be in the safety of our home and not have to subject themselves to the peer pressure of society's definition of who they should be. The funny thing is as time goes on they are so much more relaxed and now both like age appropriate things, but we do not feel compelled to send them back to public school, our reasons for homeschooling over the last few years has evolved into something so much bigger. The bible is a big part of our everyday life and I was intrigued with how the Bible and Bullying go hand in hand.

    Bullying and the Bible is another wonderful e-book from Christianity Cove and it helps to teach with the Bible that bullying is wrong and harmful. In this book there are 6 lesson that incorporate more than 30 Scripture verses. Now this is geared for kids from 5-16 so some of the things like the craft projects my boys were a little old for and did not feel compelled to complete. This was OK with me so long as we did the actual lessons. The suggested course is to complete one lesson each week, we moved a little faster than that but it is all up to you. Each lesson takes about 1 hour to complete if you do all of the suggested activities, which like I said we did not partake in. Each lesson is broken down into 6 parts...
    1. Lesson Capsule, brief introduction to the lesson
    2. Top of the lesson attention getter, definition of bullying included in each lesson
    3. Review of last lesson
    4. Lesson, each of the lesson teaches a specific anti-bullying. These lessons are completely scripted for you, which is a nice benefit.
    5. Craft or discussion, if you do the crafts they are used to reinforce the lessons, the materials are easy to find and fairly inexpensive
    6. Games, these games are to be played immediately following the lesson to reinforce what was learned.
  I found this e-book to be well thought out and extremely organized. I feel that it helped instill in my kids that bullying in any form is wrong and needs to be dealt with. I also liked how it incorporated scripture to back up the teachings of bullying. I want the kids to always know God has their back even when they may not feel that way. This is a helpful teaching tool and would be beneficial to all families, Sunday schools, youth groups and even homeschool co-ops.

  Christianity Cove has so much more to offer, be sure to check them out and take advantage of their limited time offer to save money if you are one of the first 250 to order. Also be sure to click the banner below to read all of the reviews of the wide range of products the Schoolhouse Review Crew was offered to try out with their families. I know we will be ordering some more for our Fall studies.


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Wordless Wednesday Flashback! What a difference a few years makes #mommasbaby #highschoolsenior

Pin It Now!  My Nicky, you will officially be a Senior tomorrow after school, where has the time gone? You have turned into an amazing young man. I am excited to see where God leads you next.
                                                       First day of Middle School 2007

First day of High School 2010
April 2013 before the big Haircut!! 

                                  Spring 2013 last few weeks as a High School Junior

Monday, June 10, 2013

Our first 5K ended with Exciting results...... #couch25K #5K #firsttime #1stplace

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 As I continue my weight loss journey I have been walking several times a week for 3-5 miles and have even started running, using the couch 2 5K app on my iPhone. Alyx and I have been anticipating running our first 5K in the Fall, after training some more over the Summer so we are prepared to compete. We have done some fun walks but never a timed race so this is something I felt we needed to prepare and train for.

   Little did I know in the matter of a couple of days of coming up to the camp for this last time that this course was going to change drastically. While we were browsing along on the internet one night we came across a running club that meets up here locally near camp, and they host several 5K and 10K races a month all season long. The money from the entrance fees always goes to a good charity of choice and the fees are kept reasonable enough. You sign up, you get a t-shirt and there is always a theme. So we happened upon one that would take place while we were up here and the weather has been unseasonably cool so I thought why not take advantage of it and try this out. So we originally intended our first 5K to be a run, but decided that we would go as walkers just to test the waters.

    So sign up we did! For the Diplo Dash Ice Cream Bash, so you sense the theme? Yes there was ice cream involved, at the finish line there was ice cream treats courtesy of Baskin Robins. YUMMY! So of course that was all Alyx needed for motivation. I explained to him ahead of time that this was not like our other walks we had participated in, where we walked together and chatted with folks along the way. This was every man or woman for themselves and we were not going to stick together, knowing he is longer legged than I, he would walk faster when given the opportunity. So when we lined up I told him just to walk, as fast as he could without looking back to see where I was and to not stop until he crossed the finish line, and I would get there eventually.

   Now there were many categories, 19 and under was Alyx's and 35-39 was mine, Then they were sub divided into Men and Women and there were timing chips in our Bibs so they knew our official time for our category and overall.

I thought we would do ok, and being our first time my intention was not to place very high but mainly for the experience of how an official 5K was run. Little did I know just how well Alyx was going to do. He ended up in 1st place in his division and  24th Overall. WOW! was I excited and proud of him, and he is now officially hooked.
MALE AGE GROUP: 1 - 19 Place Oall Name No. City Ag Time Pace ===== ==== ====================== ===== ================= == ======= ===== 1 24 Alyxander Kasprzak 6441 St Clair Shores 14 45:31 14:40 2 34 Kyle Gillie 8163 New Lothrop 6 47:47 15:23 3 48 Ethan Wells 6449 Davison 11 51:21 16:32 4 54 Jacob Hickey 6394 Flushing 7 51:29 16:35 5 58 Grant Healy 6389 Flint 17 51:54 16:43

FEMALE AGE GROUP: 35 - 39 Place Oall Name No. City Ag Time Pace ===== ==== ====================== ===== ================= == ======= ===== 1 28 Ellen Ruddock 6456 Flint 39 46:12 14:53 2 38 Melissa Cureton 6368 Flint 39 49:35 15:58 3 53 Sarah Wurts 6435 Linden 35 51:27 16:34 4 60 Christine Healy 6388 Flint 38 51:56 16:44 5 68 Sue Dennis 6373 Grand Blanc 35 54:16 17:29 6 75 Monica Parker 6414 Owosso 38 56:17 18:08 7 82 Jaime Grant 6383 Holly 36 57:22 18:28 8 84 Jennifer Kasprzak 6447 St Clair Shores 37 58:34 18:52 9 98 Leanna Mason 6406 Swartz Creek 38 1:05:01 20:56 10 99 Monica Mason 6407 Swartz Creek 36 1:05:07 20:58

All it took was the bait of the ice cream to get him started but winning has created a running monster. We are signing up for our 2nd 5K that will take place on June 19th. It's the Flushing 5k and kicks off the Flushing Annual Family Festival.
                On another note, I have been putting all of my spare change in an empty tennis ball can to save up and treat myself to something when I accomplish a goal of mine. For me completing a 5K race and not being in last place was a huge goal of mine and I did just that. So the next day Alyx and I took my change to the coinstar machine and I had over 40 dollars in change. Off to the outlet mall we went in search of a pair of good running shoes, he had money of his own to spend so he wanted a pair too. We spent all day going in every shoe store there was. Alyx bought a new pair of Under Armors. Regular price $119 and they were on clearance for $35. I bought a new pair of Nike+, I was on the hunt for a while of a bright coral color and in the very last store I found just that, ironically the last store happened to be the first store. We were in that store 3 times total that day, I am sure they thought we were a little bit crazy.
Oh well, the first time we went in Alyx found his shoes but had them hold them, he wanted to look around. The second time after 6 other stores and several hours later he went back in to buy them. Then we went to two other stores and I was feeling like I was going to go home empty handed I decided to head back into the store where he bought his and look around some more. Low and behold there were my shoes on the clearance rack and I swear they were not there the first time. I tried them and a few others on and I fell in love. The price was awesome too. Originally $139 on sale for $37.50 Then to top it off went to Walmart and found a cute running outfit on clearance for $10 for the shorts and the performance shirt, the kicker it matched my new running shoes. I was so happy, I cannot tell you how much fun I am having actually shopping these days. I love when I find things on the rack at the thrift store and they are too big and I have to keep looking verses the other way around, it used to be everything was too small and I had to keep looking and I would get frustrated.
     Here are my new shoes and me in my new running outfit, matching from top to shoes.

    I immediately started saving my change again, so I can save up for something new for my next big accomplishment, running a 5K instead of walking, walking a 5K and placing in the top 3 for an award or running a 5K and not coming in last or losing 50lbs whichever comes first. Only time will tell.  What do you do to award yourself for a weightloss accomplishment?? What motivates you to keep going and not give up?

Let's Make a Web page with Motherboard Books. Schoolhouse Review Crew Review 2013 #hsreviews #computerprogrammingforkids

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For as long as I can remember Taylor has had a fascination with computers and everything about them, from how they work to how programs and games are developed. As he has gotten older he has shown an interest in this becoming his career in some fashion. So when I get the opportunity to review products that align with this, I jump at the chance. Which brings us to Motherboard Books and their curriculum Let's Make a Web Page. 

Motherboard Books offers two different programs, the one we were sent was a 60 page e-book course called Let's Make a Web Page that sells for $19.95 and is easily completed in a couple of weeks at most, the other is Logo Adventures, but is a lengthier program, both are geared for kids 8-12 years of age. 

Taylor could not wait to get started, as soon as the download came he was off and running. You begin by coming up with a person to interview, this is to be the subject of whom your website will be about. Next would be jotting down the questionnaire that you will give to the person you will be interviewing. Taylor picked his Great Grandma, who is turning 93. We have been focusing a good portion of our work on her lately to reveal a big surprise come her Birthday the end of this month. Some of the questions he asked were...
1. What year were you born?
2. Where were you born?
3. What year did you graduate?
4. How many siblings did you have?
5. Did you got to College?
6. Where did you work?
7. When did you retire?
8. What was the thing you missed the most about working?
9. What were your hobbies and interests when you were younger?
10. How old were you when you got married and when did you get married?
11. If you could do one thing over in life what would it be?
12. Who was your best friend growing up,and as an adult?
13. Biggest accomplishments in life?
14. One thing you regret?
15. One thing you are most proud of?

 After your interview of your subject you begin by installing the Free Trial Software CoffeeCup HTML Editor, you need to do this before anything else.  The e-book offers 10 step by step lessons, and also includes an introduction for parents.
The lessons include steps to setting up your own webpage starting with download, adding text, adding sound, photos and links and posting your work and ends with an appendix: How to Upload to the Internet. 

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You could easily go through one lesson each day, and depending on how fast your child "gets" it maybe more or less. Some areas worked well for Taylor and he slid right through them with ease and others left him frustrated and took a bit longer.
Taylor has been struggling with HTML coding and this was no exception. I am beginning to think this is not the avenue his career should follow. I am not sure if it is to do with his Asperger's, some things especially to do with the computer come naturally and some do not and this is one of them. On the other hand HTML baffles me also so maybe it just runs in the family. While I think this is a wonderful program and is laid out in a manner that is easy to follow, it just did not work as easily for Taylor as we had hoped.  The problems we had were not the fault of the company, rather user error.  We are continuing to "play" with it in hopes that Taylor will get the hang of it, he is not the type to give up so he will trudge on. He is hoping to have it all completed by his Great Grandma's Birthday on June 28th. So we shall see. 
            I think once it clicks he will be hooked on programming and creating websites for just about anything his mind can come up with, it just takes longer for him to get some things to click into place. He has worked very hard and I am sure once it all sets into place it will be fantastic. I am letting him figure this out on his own, he needs to learn to work things through without much frustration and to problem solve on his own without me coming to his rescue. He will be an official High School Freshmen at the end of this week and he needs to work more independently as he is getting up there in grade level and I think this program may be just the thing to crack that. Time will tell. 

   If your kids are into learning the behind the scenes of computers and web page building or creating a logo then MotherboardBooks.com is where you should head to find fun to learn programs that will teach just that. If you want to learn more about either of these programs be sure to click the banner below and check out all of the Crew Reviews. 


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Friday, June 7, 2013

Math you will actually use in everyday life with Math Mammoth! Schoolhouse Review Crew Review 2013 #hsreviews #mathinreallife #homeschoolmath

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""I used Grammarly to grammar check this post, because my life is chaotic and sometimes my brain thinks much faster than my fingers type and even Mom's who homeschool make mistakes, we are both teacher and mom but we are not even close to perfect." 

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               If your kids are anything like mine they have probably asked you this question. "When are we ever going to need this Math in Real Life??? Well now there is a concrete way to answer that question for you and your kids. Make it Real Learning from Math Mammoth. We were excited to once again be offered the opportunity to review some of the wonderful workbooks from Math Mammoth. This time we chose a few titles from their States by the Numbers series.

    We took a road trip in the Fall and visited many states and we have been working on digging deeper into what each state is really all about and what it has to offer and the history of the state. We spent more time in some states more than others because we had family to visit in those states. I was allowed to pick 3 titles from any of the workbooks offered by Math Mammoth and since we enjoyed their Math in Real Life selections we got to review last year we headed in that direction again. We decided to go with 3 States from the States by the Numbers series,which sell for $2.99 each or all 50 of them for $19.99, the first was Michigan our home state, next was Texas where we have family and friends a plenty, and lastly North Carolina where our family lives on a mountain top. We added these to our unit studies about the states. They are sent via PDF file via email so you can download and print as you go along.
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   Math Mammoth and the Math in Real Life books make teaching kids Math easy, as it is in a manner that concretely shows them how Math is used in life everyday. Now these books are recommended for grades 4-6 but can be used with most likely 3-7 or in our case when your child is struggling in areas of Math and you just need something that will make it click. Taylor is in 8th grade and this is his problem, he needs things to be concrete and be shown that he really needs to learn this stuff. For Alyx this was simply refreshers as he was already done with his Math work for the school year, he is in 9th grade.In these particular workbooks you will learn and practice Math concepts such as place values, rounding, estimation, and fractions and percents. There is a handy answer key in the back of each book so it makes it easy to check their work. We received the PDF download version which is handy because then I just printed off what I needed for that days lesson. It took Taylor an average of 3 days of work time to complete each lesson, Alyx could easily complete a lesson each day or two as he works much faster and Math comes easy to him.

    All of the State books are pretty similar in the concepts they teach but the information it uses to teach is different in the fact that it is using the facts from the state, for instance Michigan to teach the concepts. We talked about the US census and the population of Michigan, and the amount of energy consumed by folks in MI. This fascinated the boys, the love information like this, especially since we are trying hard to reduce our ecological footprint this Summer. One of the questions was "The Population of MI is projected to be 10,428,683 in 2010. Round this number to the nearest thousand."
  There was talk about estimating the BTUs of energy used from both Petroleum Gas and Natural Gas and then estimating the usage for the year by rounding the numbers and then adding them together to get the estimate. Another fun topic was percentage of adults living in our state that were High School Graduates. There are 38 pages in each of these books, including the Table of Contents and Answer keys.

    Each lessons starts out by explaining the Mathematical concept that is going to be talked about in that chapter and then their are "try-its" for the student to practice the concept and then it moves onto the actual lesson with the problems they need to complete. There is the explanation, 4 "try-its" and then 20 problems per lesson. Each state book is set up like this, and like I said earlier they are teaching the same concepts, but because they are using statistics from the state the book is based on the numbers and information you are using is going to vary. It helped Taylor to keep practicing the concepts being taught and they learned facts about Michigan, Texas and North Carolina all at the same time. This also helps instill the math concepts they are learning really do apply to real life, and that Math is used everyday in many ways.
   Be sure to head over to Math Mammoth to check out all of their Math programs as they have something for children from 1st to 12th grades so there is bound to be something to fit your homeschool needs and that of your children, also be sure to head over the Schoolhouse Review Crew Blog by clicking the banner below so that you can read all of the reviews as we each chose what would interest our children and fit our individual needs so there is a wide arrange of products that were reviewed by the Crew.


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Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Wordless Wednesday Weird Bug

Pin It Now! This bug landed on my friend's golf cart today while we were riding around the camp ground. 

Paper Jungle Art Time with See the Light Schoolhouse Review Crew Review 2013 #hsreview #homeschoolart #homeschool

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 Art is an important component in our homeschool. I am as people call me ARTSY as is my son Taylor. We both were given a gift from God and we like to use it. So I was so excited when we were chosen for the review from See the Light, a homeschool video based Art curriculum. The specific one we were chosen for was Paper Jungle. I thought this would be a perfect match for Taylor as he has a knack for Origami and paper Arts.

   See the Light is a curriculum that uses DVD teaching instruction to help a child explore their hidden, or in our case with Taylor not so hidden Artist within. This worked so well with Taylor as he likes to work on his Art on his own and at his own pace. He is also a visual learner so DVD teaching helps him tremendously. This also helped with giving him more Independence for his studies. Giving him the power to complete the work on his own time, faster or slower whichever he needs. In this case he worked at a faster pace than some subjects because it is a subject area that he is passionate about. The DVD we were sent is called Paper Jungle, and it sells for $14.99 and is geared for kids 10 and up. All of the See the light DVDs are $14.99 but have different age specifications and suggestions. You may also purchase a Bundle Pack for $99.99
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   See the Light is the product born from Dave and Pat Holt who have teamed up with Artists and Musicians to bring Biblical Art in a fun and exciting way to your homeschool day. The Paper Jungle lesson DVD we received is part of the Art Projects Collection and they are all taught by Master Artisit Pat Knepley who has been drawing since she was able to hold onto a crayon. I love Art but I am not a Master Artist by any means so it gives me comfort knowing Taylor was being taught by a true Master of the Arts. The DVD was arranged by 4 step by step video tutorial lessons that last in length from 22 - 27 minutes and then lead to the creation of a 3-D Art collage that is based on the works of French Artist Henri Rousseau.  The idea is to watch the lesson and then do the project portion that is slated for that lesson. You can have your child work along with the lesson and complete it in less time but for Taylor what he did was watch it once and then watch it again while he worked on the project portion for that day and this way he could pause it as he worked and restart it when he was ready to move on. This helped keep him on task. Now you of course can run them whatever way works best for your young Artist, that of course is one of the many benefits of homeschooling, doing what works best for your child.

    Being that we are an Art inspired classroom we had all of the materials on hand, many of you probably would too, as there was nothing super difficult or odd needed to complete the project. You can find a list of materials for any of the Art Projects DVDs on the website in the description of each one so that you can make a list and gather all of the supplies before your shipment comes. This was helpful to have it all on hand in one place so he was ready to go. The main supplies needed was colored art paper, like construction paper or in our instance card stock, in a list of colors, scissors, a black marker and glue, we used glue sticks and some liquid glue for the smaller pieces. Crayons, colored pencils and other colored markers are needed as well to add detail to your piece. One thing Taylor hates is that an Art instructor talks like you are not there! Which this was not like that at all so he was pleasantly surprised. The instructor teaches in a very conversation manner so it made it pleasant to listen and engage, There was also Art History and the story of the life of Henri Rousseau and demonstrated examples of techniques and art terms giving this a very well rounded Art class. Another key point in Taylor's opinion was that he liked how he was allowed to choose what animal he wanted to do and not simply told do this. For his project he chose a Monkey, which just happens to be his nickname.  He had attended an art class in the neighborhood for a while and his biggest complaint was there was no freedom of expression. This was not the case with Paper Jungle and See the Light. There is instruction and guidance but still freedom to make your art project your own. That is a big thing for Taylor so this majorly scored points for Taylor.

     You could set this up on any schedule that fits into your homeschool day. We typically have a group Art class once a week but the boys are free to work on Art if they choose for their free work time. This is what Taylor did so he worked on 2 lessons a week for two weeks and then tweaked his final project. He is a perfectionist by nature, maybe it is his OCD but he reworked his project a couple times and is still not happy enough with it for me to share it all over the internet. He told me I could share it when it is complete and perfect. This is not because the program failed in anyway it is just his perfectionistic ways.  We would both highly recommend See the Light and especially the Art Projects DVD lessons. I can see us adding them to our homeschool curriculum library one by one for a fun fresh Art lesson. The overall age ranges for any of their programs is 5-18 so there is bound to be something for everyone. Be sure to visit the See the Light online store and also visit the other Schoolhouse Review Crew Members as there is a large assortment of reviews to be read as we all chose the DVD that interested our individual child. Just click on the banner below to find them all.

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