Homeschool On Purpose

August 26, 2016

Guest Post: Does a Stomach Disorder Mean that You are “Pepto-Bismol Deficient?” – by Keith Flint

Keith Flint - GodsWaterBoy.Com

Keith Flint – GodsWaterBoy.Com

I would like to propose a practical and logical discussion today!  My name is Keith Flint, also known as GodsWaterBoy.  Google GodsWaterBoy to see many pages of documents and various discussions that I have had about Kangen Water.

I was reminded recently of a statement a Friend of mine made recently, “When you have Acid Reflux, Irritable Bowel Syndrome, Digestive disorders, it is certainly a fact that you are not “Pepto-Bismol” deficient!

Why is it that today we create distress (disease) and then attempt to regulate the result with after market treatments or Prescription drugs?

Your Body was designed by your maker, to maintain and heal itself.  That is if you would focus on what the “Body” needs, not what you like or dislike.  Example, You drink Soda’s that are 5 orders of magnitude Acidic and your body goes into shock having to find a way to neutralize this attack on your Organs. It  has to rob the bones of Calcium, manufacture “Buffers” to stabilize and finally store it in Fat on the body to protect vital organs from destruction.

Go to a simple video that shows the comparisons of Bottled Water, Soda, GaterAid, etc.  Discover what you are not being told when you are being sold on their convenience.  <SEE HERE> (<– click to watch)

Your Body was designed to be serviced by your BLOOD! It is the delivery system for Nutrition, Oxygen, Hemoglobin, Energy and waste removal.

See the effect of one glass of Kangen Restructured water on a persons blood. <SEE 1 minute Video Here>

God designed your body PERFECTLY!  You have allowed our culture to destroy it with FAST FOOD, Convenience, Microwave Cooking, Chemical substances added to it, GMO alteration and convenience DRINKS instead of the simple choices. Particularly, the proper amount of water that YOUR BODY requires daily.  DO YOU DRINK A MINIMUM OF 1/2 Oz of water per pound weight DAILY?  If not, you are maintaining your body in a dehydrated condition.  Dehydration is the primary source of most all of our modern day “Disease Disorders” that Medical science has given names to.  Of course they choose to provide “Relief” from Symptoms rather than attempting to eliminate the CAUSE and have the symptoms gone.

You can attempt to provide Supplements, Nutrients, Detox protocols, etc, but if the Blood isn’t functioning optimally, less than 20% of what you are taking is likely to make it to where it is needed.  Wouldn’t it be smarter to give 20% of your daily dosage to each of your family members along with  yourself, because all of you are functioning with active Blood delivery? You would still be getting the same result that you now are getting, taking the full dose  yourself.

To really understand just how important the CHOICE of water is and What not to drink, review a private video site that I maintain for your visiting. I only require a first name and email to send you your personal password to access the information.  I do not hassle people, I educate and respond to their questions via text or phone calls.

my site is <HSCWater.net/keithf >

Blessings on you and your family. Be Healthy GODS way.

Keith Flint 720-281-3965

August 26, 2016

Best Phonics Resource EVER! (A Review)

I have always believed in a solid phonics foundation and with a new reader in the home, I was excited to have the opportunity to review the Can Do Cubes by jollyliteracy.com and just2ducks LLC.

The Boy is a little over 6 and entering first grade. He has been reading simple words for quite some time but has continued to struggle with the more advanced phonic rules. We have spent tremendous amount of time working through various books and trying to progress through the more difficult phonic rules. It has been a struggle. It has not been his inability to learn the rules as much as it just has not been of much interest for him… that is until the Can Do Cubes became a part of our homeschooling repertoire.

59 six-sided cubes, each bearing individual phonemes, arrived in a nicely organized box divided into two stages. Along with the cubes came an interactive DVD, two instruction booklets, two At-a-Glance Word Charts, a large Alphabetic Codes Overview chart and a Teacher’s Guide and Template Book (on CD).

I have a confession to make with this review. To be fair to a vendor and to provide a proper review, I always try and use a product exactly as it was intended. I had a much harder time with this particular product. The Boy and I tried to go through the instruction booklet and figure out where exactly to start him. While we were attempting to navigate it, he began picking up several cubes and rolling them like dice and then quickly tried to make a word (sometimes even made up words). After asking him to focus, I decided to join in and play for a while. We have had such a fantastic time just playing with the cubes. I began looking for harder words within the letters present and asking him to fish for them. Sometimes I just gathered up the cubes and made more difficult words for him. I noticed that he was more eager to 20160826_094247sound out a word on the cubes than he was from a book. What fun!

I would really like to say that we eventually got back with the program, but that would be a lie. We never did follow the program as it was intended. However, the Teacher’s Guide and Template Book on the CD has five pdf files: four different program levels, or the entire 133-page workbook (all four combined). I spent some time reviewing the four workbooks to see if The Boy had any “holes” in his learning that needed to be addressed. We used an afternoon to test through the 42 sounds that make up the Simple Code of the English language. He was able to correctly identify all but eight of them.

Identifying his level of understanding was paramount and allowed me to hone in on his weaknesses. We opened the pdf files on our tab and used the workbook interactively instead of printing it out onto paper. This has been a wonderful tool!

I am not sure that I will continue utilizing this program, as intended, but I will definitely continue using it as a resource and a reinforcing manipulative. The Boy always has a smile when we bring out the Can Do Cubes!

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August 26, 2016

Fieldtrips

One of the greatest blessings of homeschooling is being able to take the children on field trips where their education can be brought to life.

I remember as a child, in public school, we took multiple field trips. We visited museums, libraries, the newspaper and more. When my older children were in public school it seemed as though funding had declined so much so that they took one or none each year. It is unfortunate.

Fortunately, for us, we can take as many field trips as we desire and visit many locations as possible to enhance our studies.

We currently have three trips scheduled through October. Bookworm Beauty has literally devoured all things Laura Ingalls over the last year and as a culminating event we are taking a pioneer road trip through Kansas, Nebraska and Eastern Wyoming. To further our atmosphere studies we will be heading to the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, Colorado. Lastly, we anticipate completing a unit on aircraft and will be heading to the Pueblo Air Museum.

I am sure we will be adding many other incredible locations to our calendar during the rest of the year.

Where are you looking forward to visiting this school year?

August 19, 2016

Puzzle Fun: A Review

It is always a joy to be able to review a product that is simply fun! As a puzzle-loving family, we were excited when we received the Solar System FlipStir puzzle by Enlivenze LLC.

Trinity FlipStirAfter reading the very simple instructions: flip, stir & solve, I went to work. It took me about 5 minutes the first time to solve the puzzle.

This puzzle is a self-contained unit that includes a stir-type stick to maneuver the 10 individual pieces within the cylinder housing. We have the Solar System puzzle which is a great addition to our home as we have been studying the solar system over the last year. It has proven to be a fun reinforcement of learning for the kids.

Although the puzzle is designed for ages 7 and up, The Boy (6) has had just as much fun enjoying it as Grandpa (78). Grandpa just so happens to also be crowned as the quickest solver in our family. we tend to be slightly competitive in our home and leave the FlipStir puzzle on the coffee table. It goes without saying that if someone inquisitively picks it up then the timer is started so we can get their solve time. Grandpa completed it in 2 minutes, 12 seconds… beating my best score by 15 seconds. I was not thrilled… yes, we are competitive here.

Other FlipStir puzzles are also available. There are two level 1 options: the Tyrannosaurus Rex and Rainbow Pencils and 3 level 2 options: the Statue of Liberty, the Solar System and the Periodic Table of Elements. Each sell for $24.95.

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August 18, 2016

Spanish Immersion: Homeschool Style (A Review)

We understand the value and tremendous benefits of learning a foreign language so we were delighted when we were informed that we were selected to review the Spanish Starter Set 1 by Foreign Languages for Kids by Kids.

IMMERSION

Foreign Languages for Kids by Kids takes an immersion approach to teaching foreign language. The research concludes that immersion students most often reach greater levels of foreign language proficiency than through other foreign language program models (Williams Fortune, 2016). We have firsthand experience with the immersion model as Bookworm Beauty attended a language immersion program for two years before we made the decision to homeschool. She attended the Spanish program at that school during 2nd and 3rd grade, well behind her peers that were in attendance. Within a fairly short time, she was comprehending quite a bit of Spanish and gaining in her confidence in using the language.

Although our other two school-aged children, Sweetness (2nd) and The Boy (1st), will not have the same opportunities that Bookworm Beauty had we still desired adding foreign language to our homeschooling routine.

THE PROGRAM

When Foreign Languages for Kids by Kids arrived, we sat around like kids on Christmas, eagerly awaiting to see the package contents! There were three program levels in the Starter Set 1 that included both a full-color Guide for Teachers and Parents and an activity workbook; an instructional DVD; sticker labels; and flashcards with card game instructions for the flashcard use.

After looking through the materials we had a decision to make. We decided to get Bookworm Beauty (6th) more involved with our foreign language introduction. The program is so easily laid out that it was well within her ability to facilitate the Spanish class with the younger kids. Being that it is primarily video-based instruction, there is really no need to actually teach Spanish. The students are introduced to everyday conversation by watching and re-watching video segments for each lesson.

Starter Set 1 is currently available for $140.25 (15% discount offered on their website) online memberships are also available and offer access to all of the same materials digitally. There’s even the ability to try it FREE for two days!

OUR EXPERIENCE

Bookworm Beauty and I read through the Guides for Teachers and Parents together so that we were both clear on the intended process for the program. After explaining to Sweetness and The Boy the expectations for them and  that Bookworm Beauty is to be treated like any other teacher, we were set to start. I have to confess that it was fun to see Bookworm Beauty step in and facilitate the class because she seemed a few inches taller and had an air of professionalism about her!

She followed the outline in the guide to a “T” without any deviation. The younger kids enjoyed the videos and always seemed interested and engaged, which I would believe it paramount to a program like this working. I was impressed that by the second lesson, Sweetness and The Boy were calling out the names of everyday items as they appeared on the screen.

The kids also had a lot of fun being able to label some items throughout the house with the Spanish sticker labels that are included in the program. It also serves as a good reminder to the rest of us that we are trying to increase our Spanish vocabulary and so we purpose to try and use the Spanish word for those items.

The flashcard set includes the each of the vocabulary words in pictures as well as a set of cards with the written vocabulary word. There is a set of cards for level 1 with 25 vocabulary words; level 2 with 39 vocabulary words and level 3 with 21 vocabulary words. The instructions for the Go Squish Cardgame is similar to playing Go Fish, which most children are familiar with, but with a twist. The kids particularly enjoyed playing Go Squish!

The activity book is a full-color consumable workbook that includes many activities such as word searches, fill-in-the-blanks, secret codes and more. This was a perfect workbook for reinforcing the vocabulary words learned and was well within Sweetness’s ability to complete. We did not order a second workbook for The Boy as it was a bit above his ability level to complete.

LOOKING AHEAD

Foreign language is important to us and we want to find new and creative ways of incorporating it into our homeschool experience. Foreign Languages for Kids by Kids made it very easy for us to begin that process! Bookworm Beauty had fun facilitating the class and being able to brush up on her own Spanish skills. We are not quite finished with Level 1 but fully anticipate completing it along with Level 2 and 3 over this coming schoolyear.

 

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Williams Fortune, Tara. (2016). What the Research Says About Immersion. Retrieved August 17, 2016, from  http://carla.umn.edu/immersion/documents/ImmersionResearch_TaraFortune.html

 

 

August 18, 2016

M.I.A.

I know… I know… I’ve been M.I.A. Something strange comes over me when the temperatures start creeping up towards 90 and beyond. Like a sunflower, I come alive!

541px-Sunflower_sky_backdropI have lived this summer.

For the last several years, I have approached fall with regrets. I tend to regret all of the things I didn’t get to do during that summer break… but not this year. This year I greeted each and every day with renewed energy and wonder for what the day was going to bring forth!

Consequently, I neglected many other things. I neglected my blog. I neglected my rest. I neglected all of my indoor projects.

Yet, we played. We visited the Red Rocks, Lakeside Amusement Park and Elitch Gardens. We finally made our way to the Pueblo Zoo. We camped. We completed multiple art projects. We swam. I celebrated Angel’s 22nd birthday with her in Phoenix. We began bringing the children’s visions of a playhouse to fruition. I’ve gardened. I’ve read. And mostly, I’ve played.

It was a good summer… and as it comes to a close and we begin diving back into our homeschooling routine, I smile because I have no regrets this year. None.

July 13, 2016

Not Just Another Art Program

We have been a part of a wonderful creativity-inspiring weekly homeschooling art co-op with two other families. This group became a perfect platform for reviewing ArtAchieve.’s Entire Level II.

Kragel ArtBefore bringing ArtAchieve to my homeschooling art co-op, I did my due diligence and ensured that I would not be violating any copyright laws by sharing the lessons in a group format. I received a quick response from the artist/owner that was personal and thoughtfully written. He gave me permission to use the program in our co-op  and informed me that oftentimes teachers use the program a classroom setting. I thought this was very generous as their packages were already affordable. For example, the Level ll package is $53 for a 1-year license and includes 14 complete art lessons (additional single and bundled purchasing options are also available).

The Lessons

Two formats are offered for the presentation of the lesson. You can either follow a PowerPoint version or a video version that is taught by the artist John Hofland. Each lesson centers around a unique culturally-rich item that was collected during the artists global travels. He takes the time to introduce the students to the item, explaining where it is from and offers cultural tidbits. The lessons include additional studies links  in Science, Social Studies and Language Arts to  help students to make connections between the world they see around them and their art.

Rules for Drawing

The lessons follow the same format beginning with the item description and its cultural significance. Next, the students are taught how to take a moment to relax before beginning their art. The Rules for Drawing are then covered, which seemed to help the students to further relax and approach their art from a creative standpoint instead of an attempt at perfection. The step by step detailed drawing instructions broke down the process into simple and easy to follow steps allowing all ages to be able to follow along and achieve success.

After the drawing was complete suggestions for coloring or decorating the drawing are given. This was another area where cultural significance is discussed and the students are taught to view this as an opportunity to bring more than just some color to their piece.

Our Experience

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Our weekly art co-op consists of ten children ranging from 3-15 years old. We found that each of our children thoroughly enjoyed their art time. They celebrated the process, learned about different cultures and took pride in their art. The best part of our experience is that each child, regardless of age, was able to follow along and gained confidence in their artistic abilities.

trin roo Toby Cat Ruby Isaiah cat

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Together, we completed three of the projects; The Japanese Goldfish, The Ukrainian Rooster and The Czech Cat (which is always available for FREE). Each of our lessons have been a complete success. My personal favorite was the Ukrainian Rooster, their art pieces were colorful and lively. It seemed like the creativity of the children increased with that particular lesson, possibly as a result of all of us having chickens.

trina cat Staci Roo Maddy roo Richard Cat

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Downside

Everything has a downside, even a program that has provided a means to inspire our children to pursue art in a meaningful way. The downside to this incredible art program is that I have to figure out which art pieces I will put on display. With three students in my home, I have quickly run out of room and have found myself with a lot of wonderful artistic pieces to choose from. We already have framed original art throughout our house by our budding artists and will need to get an additional frame for each of them to choose one to bring life to our walls. The rest will have to go into an art portfolio. The kids have also considered using their pieces as gifts for family members which is a great way to share their art with others.

Looking Ahead

Bookworm Beauty is the artist in our family and we are planning a canvas party to celebrate her birthday. We intend to utilize one of the ArtAchieve lessons as the central activity. The lessons are laid out so well that we anticipate a lively and colorful room full of adolescent girls that have gained a sense of artistic success and creativity.

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July 08, 2016

Getting to the Root of Learning: A Review

We have thoroughly enjoyed reviewing various products and curriculum over the last several months, many have been well timed, much needed, or just plain fun. Olim, Once Upon a Time in Latin: Derivatives I by Laurelwood Books has been all of those things!

When Princess and Angel were in fifth grade (in a public school) they both had a teacher that ended up becoming their favorite and most influential teacher. One of the most memorable things that he did was toss out the standard spelling curriculum and incorporated Latin and Greek root word studies instead. Over the years, that one single change in their education proved to become a valuable tool. They were able to look at many unfamiliar words and figure out their meanings simply by understanding how to break down the word and decipher it.

Olim, Once Upon a Time, Latin/English Derivative II have kept this in the back of my mind over the years and looked forward to finding ways to incorporate the root word studies in Bookworm Beauty’s education. Olim, Once Upon a Time in Latin: Derivatives I has proved to be an excellent starting point to making that happen!

To start with, the soft-covered workbook is perfectly sized at 8.5 x 11 inches and is manageable at 143 pages. It may seem silly, but the cover itself has a soft silkiness to it which literally makes you want to hold the book. Again, it may be silly but Bookworm Beauty loves to feel it… which means she holds it… which means she wants to work in it… which means she is taking initiative and I do not have to enforce this study.

13620736_10153689413602227_7137094637812949312_nFor us, another benefit is that Bookworm Beauty desires to learn other languages. We were just entering our summer mode when the workbook arrived. Being that she likes to use workbooks over the summer (or anytime really) it was a perfect fit for a summertime study.

The workbook begins with a  single-page Notes for the Teacher, recommending that students do not rush through Derivatives but instead to take two weeks per lesson; allowing 30 weeks to cover 15 lessons. The next section introduces the students on Roman Numerals and How to Pronounce Latin. Unlike English, in Latin every letter or group of letters has a unique sound, making pronunciation of words specific. This is a great thing for a student and allows them to build confidence in their pronunciation of words as they are not left wondering if they actually said it correctly.

Each lesson follows the same format. The lesson begins with vocabulary and introduces the student to ten Latin Words, their meaning and English derivatives. For example, the first word taught is: Latindicere, dicit, dixit (v); meaningto say, (he says), (he) said; derivatives diction, dictionary. Students then trace the vocabulary words, meanings and derivatives on a worksheet that has lightly printed dotted-cursive text then completes a fill-in-the-blank story sheet. There are then six different exercises: two fill in the blank activities, connect the derivative to the Latin word, multiple choice, crossword puzzle and an opportunity to write a story using the ten Latin words introduced.

Overall, at $22.95 for the workbook, it would be a great addition to a child’s education – regardless of whether homeschooled or educated elsewhere. Olim, Once Upon a Time in Latin: Derivatives I is developed primarily for fifth to sixth graders. Bookworm Beauty is entering sixth grade and I found it to be a perfect fit for her at this age. She has completed her lessons entirely self-directed and has fully enjoyed it.

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June 30, 2016

Adding Flair to Writing Assignments

It has been a joy to have the ability to review NotebookingPages.com‘s  Lifetime Membership. It is quickly becoming a tremendous new writing resource for our homeschool and for Bookworm Beauty in particular. Since I had no previous notebooking experience prior to receiving our membership for review, I had absolutely no idea of what to expect and I was a little bit overwhelmed as I scrolled through the topic lists. There were so many products to choose from!

Writing has become a large part of our homeschooling so we tend to put a great effort into encouraging the kids to do as much of it as possible. Some of the things we have done to help them take greater pride in their writing is to give them the resources and the means for making things such as folders and books to display their pieces. After discovering the amount of notebooking resources on NotebookingPages.comI knew that we would never have to experience boring in our writing presentation again. 

If you have followed my blog at all over the last year, you would already be well aware that Bookworm Beauty has been slightly obsessed with Laura Ingalls Wilder. She has devoured virtually every book written by her or about her and has spent countless hours watching the Little House on the Prairie DVDs. She was recently assigned a couple of assignments to commemorate her early pioneer and Ingalls’ studies, one of which was to write an expository piece. She needed to share her own thoughts about her studies.

We were pleased to find that NotebookingPages.com offered a Laura Ingalls Wilder  resource. It was similar to each of the resources we had perused and contained 11 pages. There was a cover page with a picture of Laura Ingalls Wilder and 5 pages with single-spaced lines that included either a picture of her or a picture and an empty box for the student to add or draw a picture, a chart or something else of their choosing. There were 5 additional pages laid out the same but had lines for primary writers. Bookworm Beauty used the single-spaced notebooking pages for her writing piece and she chose the sheets that included both the pictures and the empty boxes so that she could show off her artistic side.

With so many options at NotebookingPages.com I have found myself looking for additional writing resources to use with almost every upcoming topic we will be studying over the next school year. Being that we are still in the midst of our solar system and outer space unit, we have decided to have all of the children utilize the Planet notebooking pages for their writing.

NotebookingPages.com‘s  Lifetime Membership is $97 and payable as either a single installment or 4 monthly installments of $10 for the first month and $29 for the following three months. This allows members access to all downloadable products including all lifetime updates and new products as well as a 12-month subscription to their Notebooking Publisher web-app. This is an incredible deal as not only are there literally 1000’s of pages of notebooking materials, they are continually adding new pages. If you are unsure about the membership then their FREE Member Resource Center with over 600 resources would be a great place to start.

I imagine that we will be utilizing NotebookingPages.com‘s resources a lot over the coming years and changing every day writing to masterpieces with a bit of flair!

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June 29, 2016

Through the Bible with Veritas Press: A Review

We wholeheartedly welcomed the opportunity to review the one-year family subscription to VeritasBible.com by Veritas Press as studying the bible is important in our family. As homeschoolers it is easy to make it a priority as part of our schooling. However, it is not limited to schooling but rather a way of life for us.

We seem to apply multiple means of bible study at any given time. Often times any one of us could be going through a particular bible study guide or we may be studying a particular topic together such as our current study of Esther during our early morning family breakfast time. We appreciate having multiple means of studying God’s Word and VeritasBible.com was no exception. I especially appreciated how well it fit into our daily routine, outside of school time (we are in full-swing summer-mode around here).

Setting up the account was a simple process that took only a few minutes. After the initial set up we were able to create individual accounts for both Bookworm Beauty (6th) and Sweetness (2nd). The girls were delighted to be able to select their own avatar to represent them. This is something I still chuckle at but am finding that it is highly effective in encouraging students to personalize their experience and ultimately engage. We initially planned to allow both girls to use the program individually. However, as we sat and looked at the first lesson alongside Bookworm Beauty, we found that we all were engaged. This pretty much set the stage for the rest of our learning. We hooked up the lap top to the television and utilized VeritasBible.com as our family bible study.

To put it simply, it is entertaining, engaging, and fun.

VeritasBible.com currently offers three different studies: Genesis to Joshua; The Gospels;  and Judges to Kings. They also have two additional studies that will be available soon: Chronicles to Malachi and Job; and Acts to Revelation. Once a particular study is selected the students are introduced to their sibling hosts Abigail and Asher. Abigail and Asher are in costume in front of a set as they act out their narration of events in a dialogue fashion. Each dialogue acts as a segway to the next activity, worksheet, song, etc where the student is able to solidify and test what they have learned.

Each lesson takes approximately 30 minutes to complete. After completing the lesson the student is taken back to their timeline map where a flag is placed upon the completed section and they move to the next lesson.

We found a couple of things that we would desire to be different. One thing is that the lessons must be completed in order to progress and each section of the lesson must be viewed in its entirety. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, however if the computer happens to shutdown at the end of a lengthy video, with only seconds left, you must repeat the entire video upon rebooting the system to progress to the next part of the lesson. Of course, this may be a rare situation, but it did happen and it was frustrating. Another thing that was a bit frustrating is that there are no options for moving to a different lesson without viewing them chronologically. Again, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing but when your students have studied creation several times, it would be nice to be able to progress to the area you would like to start in.

Despite the small complaints that I have had, we have thoroughly enjoyed our family bible study time. VeritasBible.com is an excellent addition to anyone’s homeschooling repertoire, family study options or as a resource. All of use have enjoyed the program: The Boy (6) all the way through Handsome (much older than 6) and we look forward to utilizing it throughout the remainder of our 1-year subscription. I’m hoping the new studies will be available soon enough for us to enjoy them as well, and if not… well… I guess I will have to renew my subscription!

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