Posted in Homeschool Review Crew Posts, Homeschooling, Money Management

Review of The Complete Starter Kit from The Kingdom Code

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With The Complete Starter Kit from The Kingdom Code, I can teach my daughters money management skills with a Biblical context.  Because I know our daughter has been dreaming of creating her own graphic novels, I recognize she needs to understand about money management and more in order to be prepared to become an entrepreneur.

According to their website, The Complete Starter Kit includes the TextbookStudent Packet, and Teacher’s Guide. These three components are everything needed to teach one student The Kingdom Code curriculum, and the Teacher’s Guide makes teaching easy and fun!”  We also received the JR Budget Kit and The Kingdom Code Coloring Book to review as well.

The Kingdom Code is an elective designed as a 34-week course, (a full year) and ideally should be taught twice weekly for 45 minutes. It is Biblically based and has Bible verses in every lesson.  Parental guidance is definitely required especially for the first eight lessons, which take about a semester while the student is building their business from the ground up.  The students have to choose a mentor, create their business plan, and start their marketing strategies and work towards gaining money.  Lessons 9 – 27 focus on maintaining a ledger, create an income statement, make calls as well as write thank-you notes to customers, and more.

During the course, students examine everything from what The Kingdom code is to Building Treasure, to developing a business plan, to keeping records, to savings, to discovering their gifts, as well as taking charge of their life.  Periodically, they also look back at what they have done and accomplished.  At the stage our daughter is at currently, we wanted her to use this material more to get ideas rather than earning money currently.  She had been working on developing her “world” for her story but realized she needed to start all over in order to be satisfied since she recognizes that having the background world is important.

One of the key steps is finding a mentor, but so far we have been unsuccessful at that because of what she wants to do.  However, as a blogger, I can help with writing.  She has found people online to help with her artwork.  Plus, her father can assist with the business side of things.  So even though she is off to a slow start with her own business, she still is learning a lot from this course.

Because of the type of business our daughter wants to develop, certain things did not apply to her.  We knew from the beginning, she was more likely to find her customers through the Internet rather than phone calls and other traditional means.  Our goal in reviewing this course centered more on understanding money and business management rather than actually rushing to make money.  As parents, my husband and I both recognize the importance of our daughter learning how to create business plans, manage money, and determine how to market her products.

Here is a sample of the type of artwork she might include in her novels.

The Student Textbook is a 244-page spiral-bound book which includes economics, budgeting, historical entrepreneurship, consumer math, Biblical codes, life skills, and practical thinking in order to capture the student’s imaginations.  The lessons include many medieval ideas such as bravery, kindness, honor, integrity, and more.  Our daughter really enjoyed the content and how the lessons were presented.

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The Student Activity pages are contained in the Student Packet and include consumable worksheets for the students to complete.  Our daughter found these pages interesting and worth completing.

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Here are some sample activity pages our daughter has completed.

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The Teacher’s Guide breaks the 27 lessons down into 68 daily plans.  The lesson plans provide step-by-step instructions for the assignments along with providing suggestions and reminders.  The answers to the Activity pages and the worksheets are included as well at the end of each lesson.

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Our family appreciated how each lesson followed the same format and included Biblical passages.  Our daughter appreciated the details included in each lesson.  My husband and I also appreciated being involved in the lessons with our daughter.  Because my husband ran a business with his father prior to going full-time in the Army Reserves, he was able to offer a lot of insights to our daughter.  Since I have a degree in marketing, I will be able to provide additional insights to our daughter when we reach that stage.

Here are some pages from the coloring book.

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Here is what the receipt book looks like.

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As students complete lessons, they place stickers on the map to mark their progress.  Our daughter was not necessarily interested in doing this particular activity.

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We also received the JR KCK Budget kit as well.  This kit is designed for children who are too young to complete The Kingdom Code.  It is a great way to introduce younger children to the idea of money management.  Because we have some friends with children who could benefit from this, I plan on sharing it with them.  It includes stickers, coloring pages and more.  Here is a photograph of some of the pages.

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You can find The Kingdom Code on social media at the following links.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TheKingdomCode/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/thekingdomcode
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/thekingdomcode/
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/thekingdomcode/

In addition to money management and entrepreneur skills, the lessons also include character building activities.  Our family looks forward to completing the remainder of the lessons in this program.  So check out The Complete Starter Kit from The Kingdom Code, in order to teach money management skills with a Biblical context

Other members of the Home School Review Crew are also reviewing The Complete Starter Kit from The Kingdom Code this week.  Click here or on the graphic below to read additional reviews from other members of the Home School Review Crew.

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Posted in Composition and Writing, Homeschool Review Crew Posts, Homeschooling, Language Arts

Review of Hewitt Homeschooling Resources’ Lightning Literature & Composition – British Christian Authors 19th-20th Century

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I loved using Lightning Lit from Hewitt Homeschooling Resources with our second son before, so I was excited to have the opportunity to review British Christian Gr 11-12  with our 16-year-old daughter.  This program provides a great opportunity for our daughter to develop both her composition skills and her literary skills at the same time.  For this review, we received the student guide and the teacher guide.  However, the program also requires the purchase of four additional unabridged copies of The Four Loves by C.S. Lewis, Why Does God Allow War? by D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones, Orthodoxy by G.K. Chesterton, and Gaudy Night by Dorothy L. Sayers.  Even though our daughter is in the 10th grade, she felt confident about her ability to complete the coursework.

Hewitt Homeschooling, since 1983, has functioned as proponents of homeschooling.  According to their website, “. Our emphasis includes combining excellent academics with character development, instilling the work ethic, and developing a spirit of community service in the next generation. With a current client base of over 30,000, Hewitt’s operation is currently divided into three sectors: services, testing, and products. Operating out of our facility in Washougal, Washington, we serve parents with students from kindergarten age through high-school.”

Lightning Literature at the high school level is meant to be covered over 18 weeks, however, we used a year-long pace since we were nearing the start of our summertime school schedule when this review started.  Both a semester-long and a year-long schedule are provided so families can use the one that best suits their needs.

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Students read, answer comprehension questions, complete literary lessons, writing exercises, along with reading articles which are sprinkled throughout the course that touch on late 19th through early 20th century British Christian Literature.  The four units, covering one of the four books, includes an introduction for the students to read, information about the selection, and information for while the student is reading.  Our daughter found these sections to be extremely useful.

Students are supposed to develop a vocabulary notebook and reading journal during the course.  For our purposes, instead of requiring our daughter to write everything out, we allowed her to complete the questions, vocabulary and reading journal on the computer using a word processing program.  I also permitted her to answer some of the questions orally to me rather than typing out her answers.

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The Student guide contains all the material the student needs to complete the course including an Introduction which discusses suggestions for reading and writing including brainstorming, outlining, revisions and citing research.  Suggestions for how to use the student guide are included along with Appendices that provide suggestions for Discussion Questions and Project Suggestions, additional reading suggestions, and schedules.  Plus there are suggestions for activities to enhance the student’s experience including developing a Vocabulary Notebook, a Reading Journal, Biographies and more.

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For each unit, there is an Introduction, Comprehension Questions, a Literary lesson – which for the first unit on C.S. Lewis is Writing a Five-paragraph essay.  Our daughter is working on narrowing her topic for her first essay on a hobby.  She is trying to decide between art and music.  We will see what she decides.  She plans on doing the brainstorming and outline for this first essay at the beginning of next week.

All of the Units follow the same basic pattern.  I look forward to reading and learning with our daughter throughout the remainder of the course.  She found the Student Guide easy to follow and easy to utilize.  For the Comprehension Questions, she found most of them straight forward, however a few required deeper thought and attention in order to answer.

 

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The Teacher Guide includes information about the Student Guide, the answers to the Comprehension Questions, Suggested Schedules for either a Semester Schedule or a Yearly Schedule, Writing Exercises, Discussion Questions, as well as project suggestions.  As one of our daughter’s projects, we decided she would memorize 1 Corinthians 13.  Our goal is to have her do a Bible Study with her father on fasting, but his schedule has not permitted that yet.

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You can find Hewitt Homeschooling Resources on Social Media at the following links:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/hewitthomeschooling
Twitter: https://twitter.com/hewittonline
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/hewittonline/
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/HewittOnline
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/hewittonline/

If you would like to read our earlier review of Shakespeare Tragedies, click here.

Other members of the Home School Review Crew are reviewing various products from Hewitt Homeschooling Resources this week, click here or on the graphic below to read additional reviews of this product along with other products for various grade levels.

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Posted in Electives, Homeschool Review Crew Posts, Homeschooling, Online Homeschool Programs

Review of EdAlive’s Maths Invaders Online and Typing Tournament Online

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We received two one-year subscriptions for a typing tutor program called Typing Tournament Online and a fun math practice program called Maths Invaders Online from EdAlive.  With our children who are still being homeschooled being 16-years-old and 18-years-old, I was more interested in the typing program than the Math Invaders Online.  In these days and times, I believe that every person needs to have above average typing skills.  So I felt our children definitely could benefit from this program.  In addition, I felt my husband and I both could benefit from improving our typing skills as well as using this online program.

Because EdAlive is an Australian-based company, some of the language used will be British English rather than American English. However, our family did not find this to be a problem when utilizing this program.  We found logging in and beginning to use this problem to be quick and easy.  Their website states, “We believe that every child is special and that education gives them the best opportunity to live life to the fullest. That’s why our software and web sites make the highest quality resources available for all children to help them reach their learning potential”.

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With the Maths Invaders Online program, students work on essential numerical skills that are vital to every child’s success.  The program is designed for students ages 5 to 15.  It allows students/players to tackle a large number of problems in minutes.  It helps to develop automatic recall of important numerical math facts.  It is designed to be intrinsically motivating.  Players are able to select from a group of levels to find problems that fit their level.  It is designed to make learning fun.

Students select from the Galactic campaign, Space Rescue and practice.  By using the keyboard, players attempt to answer math questions correctly to achieve their objectives.  We found the graphics to be of high quality and fun to look at while playing.  Printable worksheets are also available as well.  From the menu, parents and players can see the leaderboards, the App library, tools and reports, help screen and more.  Students can compete against other players or the computer making it more interesting.

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Typing Tournament Online is designed for those ages 6 to adult.  I loved the fact that even adults can benefit from this program.  It allows players to begin at their current skill level and gradually introduces the whole keyboard.  Players move through the program at their own pace through 128 lessons, games, and drills.  The medieval tournament theme is highly engaging.  Our family appreciated being able to actually select a goal to reach by the end of the course and how it actively promotes using correct fingers on the right keys.  I know it easier to type faster when using proper finger placement.

Our family found this typing program to be worth using as well as being fun to practice.  The bright colors, the tournament concept and more makes this program fun to use.

Here are some pictures of the instructions for proper posture and more.

You can find EdAlive on social media at:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/EdAlive/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/edalive
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com.au/edalive/
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/edalive.education/

 

So if you are looking for great interactive programs for reinforcing math facts and/or typing skills, check out EdAlive’s Maths Invaders Online and Typing Tournament Online for yourself.  Other members of the Home School Review Crew are reviewing these two online programs this week so click here or on the graphic below to read additional reviews.

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Posted in Homeschool Review Crew Posts, Homeschooling

Review of Stopmotion Explosion and their Stop Motion Animation Kit

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With the Stop Motion Animation Kit from Stopmotion Explosion, my son was able to create his own Lego animation.  For as long as I can remember our youngest two have enjoyed creating things and making up their own stories.  So when our family had the opportunity to review this product, I was thrilled.  The Stop Motion Animation Kit can be used to make your own Lego Movies and more.  From stuffed animals, clay creations, Legos and more, this product offers the opportunity to make your own movies using animation.  Our 18-year-old son was excited to get to try this product.

Stopmotion Explosion offers the opportunity to animate and create almost anything you can imagine.  The Stop Motion Animation kit comes complete with Stop Motion Camera, Quick Start Guide, CD, and a seventeen chapter guide to assist you in your creations.  The Quick Start Guide includes instructions for installing the programs on Windows and MACS or even doing a mobile installation if you do not have a CD drive. how to focus the camera and additional information including a Q&A section.

Our son had to use the download since he does not have a CD drive for his computer.  He was really pleased to see that in addition to the CD, all of the software was available on the website.  It made it easy for him to get started.  He found the download quickly and easily.

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I have to say I feel the Quick Start guide provides everything you need to start creating quickly.  The 17-chapter book provides assistance with everything from how movies work, to creating stories, to building sets, cameras, lighting, composition, animating and more.  Our son only used this book when he had a question about what he was doing.  I feel it would be a fantastic book for someone who truly wants to dive deep into animation as opposed to someone who just wants to have fun.

When friends of our family heard about what we were doing, they offered to come and provide assistance to our son.  Their imaginations took flight and over the course of two very intense days, they captured a lot of pictures.  Here are some pictures of them working on the first day.

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Here are pictures of them working on the second day:

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From backdrops, lighting, figures and everything in between, the four had a great time working together.  However, we learned a very valuable lesson too late in the game for us:  make sure you back up every single photograph your family takes.  Otherwise, when you are ready to create your masterpiece film, you might find your file with all of the pictures has been corrupted and completely unable to be recovered.    This unfortunate event meant our son had to start completely from scratch.  However, I have to say I am still proud of the video he created.  You can click on the graphic below to watch the animation.

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Our son felt the book was very informative as a source for providing information.  I did not require him to read it in its entirety. From what he did see, it seemed to be well-written and the writers obviously knew what they were writing about.  However, he felt the actual program itself is very basic, and he would like to see a program that offers more options and choices.  He also felt it would be great for this to not rely so heavily on outside software, such as him using a third party program to actually create the movie itself.  He tried using the actual software to make his movie, but upon viewing it, the movie was not exactly what he had created initially.

Your creators set up scenes using their desired objects (in our case LEGOS),  and then take a series of pictures with them in various positions.  Next, the pictures are either turned into a movie using the included program, or you can upload them to a movie maker program of your choice.  From there, you can add sound effects and more.  One complaint my son had was the desire to be able to have more than one sound effect at a time.

Overall, I have to say we were pleased with this product.  However, I think my son would have enjoyed it more if he had been doing it simply for fun rather than having a deadline to meet for his creation.  I think having multiple people working on the animation could make the picture and staging part go faster.  So if you are looking for a product to do animation, you should definitely check out Stop Motion Animation Kit from Stopmotion Explosion for yourself.

You can find Stopmotion Explosion on Social media on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube.

Other members of the Home School Review Crew have also been using the Stop Motion Animation Kit from Stopmotion Explosion, so click here or on the graphic below to read more reviews.

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Posted in 2019 Home School Review Crew Posts, Homeschool Review Crew Posts, Homeschooling, Science

Review of CrossWired Science – Sound, and Fluid Dynamics

CrossWired Science provides online science learning in a fun and engaging way with Sound, and Fluid Dynamics.  Let’s face it, homeschooling families can use all the help they can get when it comes to streamlining our day.  I know when I was homeschooling our children, anything I could use that would allow me to combine the children into one course was helpful.  So even though we are only homeschooling two now who are both in high school, I was excited to have the opportunity to review this digital subscription.

CrossWired Science is a brand new science program that is quite different from most science curriculums.  Rather than a textbook, the program utilizes videos to convey the necessary information along with worksheets, experiments, research opportunities, reading, devotionals and more.  So it provides a wealth of learning opportunities along with opportunities to reinforce and grow your children’s faith.  A Parent login and dashboard, as well as a Student login and dashboard, are available.  The Student dashboard provides access to basically everything the student needs to complete the course.  However, some links such as the additional videos are only available on the Parental Dashboard.  The Parental Dashboard provides additional resources, planning calendars, answers to the worksheets, Quiz Results, Student progress, along with general links and unit links.  The site is easy to navigate and to find what you need.

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It is meant to be used as either a stand-alone curriculum or as a supplement and is good for children of any age.  The curriculum is Biblically-based which is important for our family.  More material and improvements to the program are being made daily.  Currently, there are two Global Topics that are available – Sound, and Fluid Dynamics.  Each of these is meant to take roughly a month to complete.  Each Global topic includes 8 core videos. The Fluid Dynamics Global Topic core videos include topics like the Wright Brothers, Planes, whiskers, boxfish and Penguins, Bernoulli, and more.

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The Sound Global Topic covers such topics as Sonar, how the ear works, how musical instruments work, how sound travels and more.  As a parent who has taken a class on sound and music in college, I was impressed by the material for this Global Topic.

A suggested plan is included on the website.  The plan is broken down for either those children who are 4-8 years old or those children who are over 8 years old.  Students will watch the Core Videos and do the quizzes and worksheets if able.  Then, each family has the freedom to select from the U-Choose selections such as Gold Digs or Digging Deeper or you can choose to use your own resources.  Students can try either level 1 or level 2 on the link lessons.  Students can read a book or magazine or start a collection.  Families can also do research, reinforcement activities, experiments or even field trips.  There is a tremendous amount of possibilities.

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Both of our children have science curriculums they are already using and love, so we were using this more as a supplement.  So currently, we are not doing the experiments, but I plan on having the two spend time this summer doing them instead.  Also, because this is a supplement, we did not choose to do everything suggested.  We focused primarily on watching the videos, discussing what we watched and doing the online quizzes.  We loved how reading is required, but various reading plans are provided.  If we were doing this as a stand-alone curriculum, we would utilize the Benge Books since we already have almost a bookcase full of them.  These books are perfect books to read alone or read aloud and even when our children were younger, they enjoyed reading or listening to them.

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So we did not work on this every day.  My goal was to cover one of the global topics within a three month time period.  I figured this plan would allow our children to go on any rabbit trails they desired.

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Since our family plays instruments and sings, we decided to start with the Sound course.  While in college, I took a course of the Physics of Sound and Music, so I was curious to see what would be discussed.  I found myself learning quite a bit as I previewed some of the material for myself.  The quality of the videos is excellent.  The videos are short enough to keep the attention of younger students.

The courses are set up with two different learning opportunities – one for first-timers, meaning those who are going through the material for the first time as well as one for second-timers – those who are repeating the material or who already have extensive knowledge of the material.

Eventually, 24 Global Topics will be available that will provide for 6 years of educational opportunities.  Over time, the depth and breadth of this program will be increased substantially.  CrossWired Science plans on keeping the cost affordable for homeschooling families, which is important to me.  It will provide for all Science material from kindergarten through Chemistry.  So if you are looking for a fresh approach to science check out CrossWired Science and online science learning in a fun and engaging way with Sound, and Fluid Dynamics.

Other members of the Home School Review Crew are discussing CrossWired Science and their experiences this week as well.  Click here or on the graphic below to check out other reviews by Crew members.

 

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Posted in Bible, Deovtionals, Homeschool Review Crew Posts

Review of “Beloved: 365 Devotions for Young Women” from Zondervan

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Zondervan has a beautiful new devotional to help your daughter grow in her faith:  Beloved: 365 Devotions for Young Women.  As the mother of one daughter who is sixteen, I am always on the lookout for devotionals and other books that will help grow my daughter’s faith.  So when I found out about the opportunity to review this devotional, I knew we needed to participate.

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Zondervan provides a variety of Bibles, books, curricula, academic resources, and digital products for more than 80 years.  The company was founded in 1931 by Pat and Bernard Zondervan. According to their website, Zondervan has remained dedicated to producing quality Christian content with integrity, which has allowed sustained growth and has established the company as a revered and reliable source for transformative and inspirational content.”  Harper Collins acquired Zondervan and helped form HarperCollins Christian Publishing.

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Our family has used resources from Zondervan for many years.  Everything we have gotten from them always delivers what we are looking for and expecting from their products, and this devotional did not let us down.  I planned on my daughter and myself doing this devotional together. With three older brothers, I attempt to find devotions for young women that we can do together.  This devotional is meant for young women ages 13-18, but I feel that girls older or younger would also enjoy and benefit from this devotional.  Daughters and mothers definitely will benefit from doing this devotional together.

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This devotional includes Scripture references from the New International Version, which is my only negative thought about this devotional.  I would have preferred them to cite the book in the Bible, Chapter, and Verse and then allowed families to use whatever Bible they prefer to use.  However, my daughter and I just read the verse and devotion in the book and then referred to our King James Version Bibles to reread the Scripture.  I feel this extra step provided our daughter the means for comparing the wording in various Bible translations.

Every devotion features an easy-to-read, timely devotion, which is paired with a Scripture passage about a Biblical girl or woman, such as Ruth, Mary, Esther, Mary or Abigail.  The pages speak about the pressures and changes young ladies face while giving them real-life applications to find and include God in their own lives.

We have found several devotions which spoke to us.  One of them addressed the Proverbs 31 Women and referenced the verse, Proverbs 31:10, which talks about the Proverbs 31 woman having a noble character.  The devotional then discusses the concept of an “ideal” woman.  The devotional does an excellent job of addressing how God has made us all individuals who are perfect in our way in His sight.

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Another one of the topics I was glad to see the devotional address was Abigail’s encounter with David after her husband had treated David with tremendous disrespect.  Day 217 addresses this topic.  The devotional shows how Abigail provided the best she had to offer and offered respect in how she approached him, spoke to him and even provided for David and his men.  The devotional makes it clear how much being respectful can go in an encounter with someone.  Days 218 through 228 continue the story of Abigail before moving to Bathsheba on Day 229.

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You can find Zondervan on social media at the following location

Facebook
Twitter
YouTube
Pinterest
Instagram

So if you are looking for a devotional to help a young lady in your life grow in her faith and Biblical knowledge, check out Beloved: 365 Devotions for Young Women from Zondervan.  If you would like to read a review of this devotional from other members of the Home School Review Crew, click here or on the graphic below.

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Posted in Bible, Homeschool Review Crew Posts, Homeschooling, Reading

Review of The Captain Sun Adventures -Rescue Me! What Superheroes Can Teach Us About the Power of Faith

My son loves reading this new comic book, Rescue Me! What Superheroes Can Teach Us About the Power of Faith, from The Captain Sun Adventures. For many years now, our four children (three sons and a daughter), have been pulling me slowly into the world of comic books – at least in the movie format. We have been watching the Marvel and DC movies. Every chance they get, they buy comic books or Manga books. So when the opportunity to review this comic book came up, I knew it would be a perfect fit for our 17-year-old son.

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The Captain Sun Adventures is meant to be part devotional and part graphic novel. It is intended to help children develop a Christian worldview. There are currently three books in the series. Rescue Me! What Superheroes Can Teach Us About the Power of Faith, the book we are reviewing is the first book in the series. This book combines a superhero with the Bible in a format designed to capture your child’s imagination.  People of all ages will enjoy this comic book with a Christian view.

According to their “About Us” page, Bryce Morgan is the pastor of Way of Grace Church in Buckeye, Arizona (www.wayofgracechurch.com) and a part-time cartoonist with the West Valley View newspaper. He wrote all three books and illustrated the second and third ones. He and his wife have three children who love comic books.

Now I do have to say our youngest son who is our third child is not my most ardent comic book lover. Some of his siblings love the genre more. However, he is my son that is always willing to jump in and assist me with a review. So I decided to have him read this book. At some point, I will have our 15-year-old daughter read it as well.

Our son found Chapters 7 and 8 to be his favorites. These chapters showed the main character was not all-powerful, and he could be defeated. Our son stated that he does not like undefeatable characters. He felt like the graphics were fairly well done. He felt the storyline was easy to follow. Our son also stated that ending did not give him closure. He felt like it would be a satisfactory ending, but the so he wants me to buy the other books for him.

It seemed like at the end of chapter 8, meaning the end of the comic book, it looked like it was heading in the direction of a “happily ever after” type ending, but for him, he felt the conclusion could have been elaborated more to make him more satisfied. He felt like the book implied there was more to the story, but for him, it just cut off and left him wanting more.

You can find The Captain Sun Adventures on Social Media on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and YouTube.

If you are looking for a Christian version of a comic book that has a superhero and references the Bible, check out Rescue Me! What Superheroes Can Teach Us About the Power of Faith, from The Captain Sun Adventures.
If you would like to read other reviews by members of the Home School Review Crew, click here or on the graphic below.

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