Posted in 2020 Home School Review Crew Posts, Book Reviews, history, Uncategorized

YWAM Publishing’s Heroes of History: Billy Graham: American’s Pastor – A Review

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Disclaimer: I received a FREE copy of this product through the HOMESCHOOL REVIEW CREW in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way

I love adding  Christian biographies to our studies so I was excited to review Billy Graham, one of the books in the  Heroes of History Series from YWAM Publishing.  From the very first home school convention we attended in North Carolina, YWAM Publishing became a favorite of our family for quality Christian books.  Through the years we have established quite a collection of these quality books and our 17-year-old daughter loves having the opportunity of participating in reviews for these books.  For this review, we received a physical copy of Billy Graham: America’s Pastor along with a downloadable copy of the Unit Study Guide.

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According to its website, “YWAM Publishing is committed to the production and distribution of books that encourage Christians to make a difference in a needy world. We specialize in books that focus on evangelism, homeschooling, prayer, discipleship, and mercy ministries.”.  As a parent, I love having these Christian-centered books for our family to read.  As a voracious reader myself, I love reading these books.  Every time we have the opportunity to participate in a review for YWAM Publishing, I love watching our daughter’s face as she makes her selection of what book to get.

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With these books, I love hearing our daughter share tidbits of information she gains from reading the books.  We both appreciate how the books combine both God and faith along with history.  For example, she enjoyed reading about Billy Graham’s interactions with Dwight D. Eisenhower and Winston Churchhill.  This book illustrated how many rich and powerful people need God as well as those will less power and wealth.

Our daughter also appreciates how the books tell of the person’s childhood and then moves forward in time.  Having been blessed to know three of her four grandparents, our daughter was captivated by the story of Billy Graham and his grandmother at the time of her death.

Billy Graham’s visits to England, Bombay, and other places show how much God’s word needs to be shared around the world and how much power His Word can have.  Another part our daughter enjoyed was reading about how Billy Graham was approached about doing a radio show.  He said he would do it if $25,000 was raised by the end of the night.  He left the event with $24,000, but when he arrived back at his hotel, he received two envelopes from two different men with $500 each in them.

The study guide allows families to examine key quotes, create a display corner, answer Chapter Questions, do Student Explorations, and more.  As a parent, I appreciate the variety of activities provided along with how there are reproducible and more I can utilize.  I also appreciate how directions are provided for both parent-directed and student-directed instruction.  Here are some sample pages from the study guide.

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At the time we were notified of this review, we were living in Texas; but we wound up moving to Charlotte, North Carolina thanks to the military.  As we were driving from Texas to Charlotte, our daughter and I discussed how we could visit the Billy Graham Library and take a tour of the family home.  Because of this, I decided not to have our daughter use the study guide right now.  Instead, we will revisit the book and the study guide when circumstances allow us to visit the library and other points of interest.

You can YWAM Publishing on Social Media at the following links:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/YWAM-Publishing-482973445102/
Twitter: http://twitter.com/YWAMpublishing
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/ywampublishing/
Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/YWAMpublishing

So if you are looking for some wonderful historical books about great Christians from history, check out the book series from YWAM Publishing for yourself.  This week other members of the Home School Review Crew are sharing their families’ thoughts on both the Christian Heroes: Then & Now and the Heroes of History.  These books make a wonderful way of learning history while also learning about great Christians. So click here or on the graphic below to read more reviews.

 

Posted in 2020 Home School Review Crew Posts, Apologetics, Bible, Online Homeschool Programs

Review of Pilgrim’s Rock, LLC’s “The Unbreakable Faith Course”

Disclaimer: I received a FREE copy of this product through the HOMESCHOOL REVIEW CREW in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way.

Review of The Unbreakable Faith Course

 

If you are studying Christian apologetics you will want to be sure to check out The Unbreakable Faith Course from Pilgrim’s Rock, LLC.  As the wife of a Primitive Baptist preacher and the mother of three sons ages 23, 21, and 19 plus a daughter who is 17, I am always on the lookout for new Bible Study materials to help solidify our family’s faithand our children’s worldview ideas.  So when our family had the opportunity to review the Unbreakable Faith Course from Pilgrim’s Rock, LLC, I was thrilled.

For this review we received online access to the Unbreakable Faith course along with physical copies of two books: God the Reason: How Infinite Excellence Gives Unbreakable Faith and The Box: Answering the Faith of Unbelief. According to their website, “The Study explores the infinite excellence of God’s perfections, exposes unbelief as irrational, unscientific, and blind faith, and demonstrates the impossibility of all things without God.” Unbreakable Faith encourages a comprehensive look at achieving a Biblical worldview while strengthening faith in Christ..  Completing this course will provide 1 unit of high school credit.

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Videos, readings, and quizzes comprise the majority of the course.  Our family found the videos were easy to understand and enjoyable to watch.  We enjoyed listening to what the instructor had to say.  As a teacher, I appreciated how everything was clearly laid out and easy to follow as far as what item needed to be done next. Also, the course requires that each item be done in order and the student cannot move onto the next item until the previous item is completed.

This course is perfect for high school credit, to do as a family, to do in a homeschool co-op setting or even to be done by a Church or a ministry.  I love when our family is able to do something like this course together as a family.  We decided to watch the videos together as a family and then everyone was able to read the books on their own time at their own speed.

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God the Reason: How Infinite Excellence Gives Unbreakable Faithand The Box are available as either physical books or ebooks  God the Reason: How Infinite Excellence Gives Unbreakable Faith provides sound theological information about how God is perfect in every way.  We found the book straight forward and easy to read.  One of our favorite sections of the book that we have read so far is how we owe God everything and He owes us nothing.  Given that our family just moved from Texas to North Carolina courtesy of the military, we have watched God’s hand on everything concerning our move.  And this book just helps emphasize this point.

The Box

The Box: Answering the Faith of Unbelief presents a dialogue between a Christian and an atheist.  As a parent, I want my children (even our adult children) to be able to logically discuss their faith and why they believe what they believe.  This book does an excellent job of helping them formulate answers to possible questions or ideas that make come up in general conversation.  One of my favorite quotes from this book examines how we as humans have limitations, but God has no limitations. This book illustrates God’s infinite excellence and the infinite excellence of God’s perfections

You can find Pilgrim’s Rock, LLC on Social Media at the following inks:
Facebook
Twitter
Pinterest
YouTube

So if you are looking for an excellent course on Christian apologetics and to help strengthen the faith of your family, check out The Unbreakable Faith Coursefrom Pilgrim’s Rock, LLC.  I am sure your family will be glad you did.

Other members of the Home School Review Crew are sharing their thoughts this course on Christian apologetics this week, so click here or on the graphic below to read more of their reviews of this excellent course.

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#hsreviews #ChristianApologetics #ChristianWorldview #GodIsCreator #PresuppositionalApologetics

Posted in 2020 Home School Review Crew Posts, Home School Review Crew Posts, Homeschooling, Online Homeschool Programs, Uncategorized

Review of the Ultimate PreK-12 Annual Membership from SchoolhouseTeachers.com

Disclaimer: I received a FREE copy of this product through the HOMESCHOOL REVIEW CREW in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way.

 

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My daughter is loving the variety of High School courses available with the High School courses from the Ultimate PreK-12 Annual Membership from SchoolhouseTeachers.com..  For a number of years our family has benefited from the resources and courses available within this online subscription.  Whether I am looking for resources and courses for our children or I am looking for resources for myself, this site has a lot to offer.

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From core courses to electives,SchoolhouseTeachers.com has all kinds of choices to select from no matter what topic or age you are searching for or desire.  One of my favorite things about this site is how they are always updating their site and constantly are adding more value for their subscribers.

On the site you will find Online Classes, Online Electives, Elementary Homeschool Courses, Middle School Homeschool Courses, High School Homeschool Courses, Homeschool parent support, access to RightNow Media material, access to World Book material, even Homeschool Planners and more.  There is also a forum where you can connect with other homeschooling parents.

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Because I am only homeschooling high school students currently, that is the section where I spend the bulk of my time.  From courses to electives to even concepts like starting a micro business, a wealth of information is presented. Here you can see some of the topics available  for high school students and parents.

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From courses with customizable lesson plans for subjects like French which our daughter wanted to study, to science courses for our son, I always can find something for our family to use.  Our daughter prefers to do work on paper rather than looking at a computer screen typically, so when preparing for the school year I printed everything out for her.  Since we are currently in flux preparing for a cross-country move, she has not actually started the French program yet in depth.  However, she has spent some time looking over the materials and feels confident she will learn a lot from this course.

I love having the freedom and flexibility to adapt the courses to our family’s needs.  Whether we want to complete a course faster than the suggested schedule or at a slower pace, we can adapt the plans on the site to meet our family’s needs.

Another section I spend a lot of time visiting is the sections devoted just to parents.  From planners to teaching tips to other helpful information including resources on marriage,  a wealth of information is available.   I love not having to search all over the Internet to find insights and useful information for our family.  Here is a sample of a marriage resource included on the site.

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So whether you are looking for a site that will provide all of your curriculum needs or you want to supplement your current curriculum, or you looking for a specific subject, the Ultimate PreK-12 Annual Membership from SchoolhouseTeachers.com.has something to offer you.  So check it out for yourself.

You can find SchoolhouseTeachers.com on Social Media at the following places:Facebook: Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/groups/SchoolhouseTeachers/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/TOSMag/
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/tosmag/    TAG your pins:  @tosmag

Other members of the Home School Review Crew are sharing their experiences with the Ultimate PreK-12 Annual Membership from SchoolhouseTeachers.com this week, so click here or on the graphic below to read their reviews.

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Posted in 2019 Home School Review Crew Posts, Homeschool Review Crew Posts, Homeschool Video Curriculum, Math

Review of Thinkwell Press’ High School Math

Thinkwell Press Review

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When it comes to teaching High School Math, I prefer to use video-based instruction such as Algebra 1 from Thinkwell.  Our high school-aged daughter prefers to do any other subject more than math, so I am always on the hunt for math programs that will help her understand mathematics. I am so glad we had the opportunity to review this program.  Because we already had another math program she was using, we utilized this program as a supplement to what she was already doing.  So I wanted her to aim to use this program three times a week.  This online program can be accessed anywhere at any time.

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Thinkwell Press offers online homeschool programs for grades six through Calculus.  In addition to the mather courses, they also offer a selection of science and economics honors courses.  The courses are video-based and are taught by award-winning professors.  The Algebra I course is taught by Professor Edward Burger.  As a parent, I appreciate how clearly he speaks and how everything he does is explained and illustrated.  Placement tests are available so you can make sure your child begins at the right level for them.

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I love the convenience of our daughter being able to watch the videos and do the exercises.  Then if she should encounter any difficulties, she can come to her father or me.  The videos are clear, concise, and do an excellent job of explaining what the students will be doing.  As a former math teacher, and someone who loves math, I appreciate the fact the problems being demonstrated correspond to what our daughter has to do on her own.

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The course is broken down into sections that cover:

  • Foundations for Algebra
  • Equations, Proportions, and Percents
  • Inequalities
  • Functions
  • Linear Functions
  • Systems of Equations and Equalities
  • Exponents and Polynomials
  • Factoring Polynomials
  • Quadratic Functions and Equations
  • Data Analysis and Probability

I love how our family had the ability to jump around in the course to the sections our daughter needed to work on.  I also appreciated the fact that the online exercises for the sections we worked on could be printed and worked out on paper prior to completing the answers on the computer.  Another handy feature is the fact that real-time feedback is given.  So when our daughter put in her answer for a problem, she immediately knew if she got it right or wrong.  But in addition to just saying if the answer is right or wrong, the solution is also displayed which helps ensure your child can see what they needed to do if they got the problem wrong.  In addition to worksheets and exercises, there are also review exercises and their answer keys provided.

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Another feature I really appreciate is the fact that the transcripts of each lesson are provided.  So families can print them out for the student to refer back to if they have encountered any difficulties.

You can find Thinkwell Press on social media on Facebook and YouTube.

So if your family is looking for an online math program, check out the High School Math, programs including Algebra 1 from Thinkwell.  Other members of the Home School Review Crew are reviewing Algebra I along with other grade levels and courses from Thinkwell Press, so check out their reviews by clicking here or on the graphic below.

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Posted in 2019 Home School Review Crew Posts, Homeschooling, Math, Uncategorized

Review of Elephant Learning Math Academy’s 12 Month Subscription

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Online Math programs such as Elephant Learning Math Academy help make math fun for students while helping them to improve their math skills. As a mother who excelled at math in school, I need to have every available tool in my arsenal for helping my non-mathematics loving high school daughter to make math fun, or at the very least tolerable.  So when I saw the opportunity to review this program I knew we had to try it.

This online program is supposed to help students learn a year of math in just three months using the program 3 times a week for a total of thirty minutes.  From everything from counting right through Algebra, this online program covers the material.  You may access the program either using a computer or through an app that can be downloaded.  Primarily our daughter used this on the computer. However, I appreciate the convenience of having the app available.

The program is designed for children ages two to sixteen.  Students are able to select from a variety of games such as soccer, helicopters, nine lives and more for their learning time.  On either platform, the student logs in and begins their game time.  A timer in the corner allows parents and students to see how much time they have spent in the program or app.  This feature makes it convenient for making sure students are spending enough time working/playing.

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I appreciate how it can be used to supplement any math program and does not require a lot of time on my part or my daughter’s part.  The program determines what your child knows and what he or she needs to work on as they progress.

Our daughter found it easy to spend thirty minutes at a time in the app rather than the recommended 10 minutes a day for three days a week.  She used the program three times a week for most of the review period.  I appreciated how this program prevented the normal struggles that arise when doing math with our daughter.

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While I will not say she found the program perfect, it was a good fit for her even though she does not like math.  I also found the real-time reports to be extremely useful.  Here is a screenshot of one. By clicking on any of the active curriculum circles, parents can receive more information regarding that subject. Let’s face it, regardless of what a person decides to do in life, certain math skills will always be used. I like how the program/app provides suggestions for how to improve skills outside of the program/app.

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Parents can also find out about topic milestones including statistics about playtime, how many questions were attempted and how many questions were passed.  The analysis lists what the tasks consist of – such as multiplying by 6, 7, 8, or 9 using rows, as well as what your child is working on and what he or she may need help with, along with suggestions for how to help your child.

As a parent, I like knowing what type of programs my child is using (even though she is in high school now), so I tried the program out for myself  I felt the graphics were of good quality, the questions were appropriate, and the amount of time required in a week was reasonable.

You can find Elephant Learning Math Academy on social media on Facebook, Pinterest, YouTube, and Instagram.

So if you are looking for a math app/program to help your child develop their math skills check out Elephant Learning Math Academy and their 12 Month Subscription for yourself.

Other members of the Home School Review Crew are sharing their experiences with this program as well this week.  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, Online Homeschool Programs, Uncategorized

Review of Calvert Homeschool Online

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I have always been curious about Calvert Homeschool since I have heard their name in homeschool circles for years.  When they offered their Calvert Homeschool Online program with access to all the courses, I knew I wanted to check it out!  Calvert Homeschool Online provides a completely online experience that only requires a solid Internet connection.

For this review, we received a Family Subscription to Calvert Homeschool Online for up to three students.  Since we had already started our school year, I planned on us using this curriculum more as a supplement to what we were already using versus it being our primary curriculum.

As a firm believer in the idea that you are never too old to learn, I created a student account for myself as well as our son and daughter who are in high school.  One feature I really love about the set up of Calvert is that we had access to all of the online courses for all of the grades.  So for myself, I was able to choose the high school courses that most interested me.  So I elected to do Geometry,  English II, U.S. History – Reconstruction to Present, Pre-Calculus (so I can brush up on my skills before our son gets there, and Integrated Physics and Chemistry.

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I assigned our sixteen-year-old daughter to Integrated Physics and Chemistry, English I, World Geography, and Algebra I.  However, I wound up deciding last week to have her move from Algebra I back to Mathematics 8 just to provide some reinforcement. My one desire would be for a high school math course for students who do not need the typical college-bound, in-depth math pathway.  For our son who was 18 at the time we started, I assigned English IV, Government, and Physics. He is someone who plans to go to college in the future, so the math tract is perfect.

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I love having the flexibility to change due dates or curriculum choices if needed.  Another feature I loved was the ability to decide for each student what features I wanted them to have access to such as answer keys and unlimited chances.  I believe in teaching to mastery so these ideas work for our family’s philosophy.

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Each lesson contains videos, text, the ability to do flashcards or spelling bees if you select those choices, and more.  Our family felt the videos were well-done and easy to follow.  My family felt the work was challenging enough to be interesting without being so difficult that my children became frustrated.

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In addition to the student log-ins, there is a parent log-in that allows homeschool parents to set up the school year, assign courses, as well as create reports.  Some of the reports that can be created include daily work reports, report cards, and grade reports. With just a few clicks any of these reports can be created for any student you want to select. Parents also have the ability to reschedule a single course for a student or all the courses for a student.  Because let’s be real, as homeschooling families life happens and sometimes we do not get through everything we want to do.

You can find Calvert Homeschool Media at the following links:

Facebook: www.facebook.com/CalvertHomeschool
Instagram: www.instagram.com/calverthomeschool
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/CalvertHomeschool/

So if you are looking for the freedom and flexibility of an online homeschool curriculum, I suggest you check out Calvert Homeschool Online program with access to all the courses for yourself.

Other members of the Home School Review Crew are sharing their thoughts about Calvert Homeschool Online this week, so click here or on the graphic below to read more reviews by the Crew.

 

Posted in Art, Home School Review Crew Posts, Homeschooling, Online Homeschool Programs, Uncategorized

Creating a Masterpiece – Drawing Program (a review)

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Homeschool art curriculum such as the Drawing Program from Creating a Masterpiece is a great way to add drawing instruction to your child’s day, or for your own educational enrichment.  Ever since I was young, I avoided art because that was an area where my older sister excelled.  However, having four children with various gifts and talents in art made me long to learn how to draw myself.  So when I saw the opportunity to review this online program, I was thrilled to have an opportunity to review it myself.

Creating a Masterpiece provides online art lessons for children and adults of all ages.  According to the website, “Proven by the success of thousands of students, Creating a Masterpiece is the perfect choice to empower students with the skills needed to succeed in creating fine art. Students of all ages will be challenged by the unique emphasis on producing beautiful, masterpiece quality artwork.”  Truly, there is something for everyone in this program.

Master artist and teacher Sharon Hofer offers instructions that are broken down into manageable pieces and that are easy to understand. From Drawing to the Core program to the Art History program, families have the ability to select what is the right program for their situation.  In the Core Program, projects include ink, watercolor, mixed media, and more.

For this review, we received access to the Drawing program.  Families can select from Beginning Drawing, Drawing Level 1, Drawing Level 2, or Drawing Level 3 based on experience and ability.  I am glad that all four levels were available to us.

The Art Skills taught in the Drawing levels include: Incorporating Value, Shading, Two Point Perspective and many more. The four levels include 30 Projects, 48 Lessons, 3 Drawing Media.  One important thing to remember is that quality supplies are required for this program.  Obviously, if you want to create a masterpiece like a master artist you need high-quality supplies.

Sharon Hofer begins each lesson by describing the project, showing a sample, along with listing the materials that will be used.  I found her manner of speech and the speed at which she talked to be manageable.  Each lesson is broken down into parts.  So if necessary, you could break each project into multiple sessions.

I believe for younger children, parents may need to help them with some of the techniques.  However, I believe that children of any age could and would enjoy this program.

I appreciated being able to decide what projects I wanted to work on in what order.  Another feature I like is how every lesson has a list of supplies needed to complete each project.  Because I am a beginner and not very confident in my abilities, I began with Beginning Drawing.  For the projects at this level, I had a choice of working with pencils, colored pencils, or charcoal.  I decided to begin with a cartoon giraffe.  It seemed like a fun project to complete.

The supplies needed for this project included:

  • Drawing Paper: White 9″x12″
  • Drawing Pencil: 6b
  • Pencil Eraser (refillable)
  • Regular 2b Pencil and Eraser

Here are some photos of me working on this project.

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As a supplement to this lesson, Ms. Hofer provided instructions to draw another cartoon of another animal so I decided to draw a bear.  Here is that sketch.  Now, I have to admit, I plan on going back and trying to do the bear again.

 

For my second project, I did a pencil project called “Simplicity” that included trees, hills, and water.  It required the following materials:

  • Drawing Pencil: 6b
  • Regular Pencil
  • Retractable Pencil Eraser
  • Eraser
  • Drawing Paper
  • Tortillon

Here is a collage of my work for this project.

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You can find Creating a Masterpiece on social media on Facebook.

So if you are looking for a Homeschool art curriculum such as the Drawing Program from Creating a Masterpiece. You should check out this program.  It is a great way to add drawing instruction to your child’s day, or for your own educational enrichment.

Other members of the Home School Review Crew are writing about their experiences with this program this week.  Click here or on the graphic below to check out their reviews.