Archive | July 2018

Classical Music & Watercolors

Since our previous Art Appreciation posts received so much love, I thought I’d share another fun art class. We are learning about Classical Music and since each piece has a unique personality, it only made sense to add art.

For this experience, we used some watercolors that I snagged via Blitsy for $1.52 over the Christmas holiday season. We listened to a few classical pieces from our Music Appreciation course but during the art time we listened to other pieces.

While the music played I had the children draw and paint whatever the music made them feel. It turned out to be an enjoyable experience for Bear, Bam Bam, and Princess. Each created a wonderful masterpiece and as the art dried we discussed their thoughts about the music.

You can see our musical art adventure via this recent YouTube video.

Just in case you missed it, be sure to check out our previous art blog posts and videos.

Make this week artistic,

Ta’Neisha K.


Review: Smart Kidz Radio

Playing music is something our whole family enjoys while cleaning, reading, and cooking. Recently, we had the opportunity to review the Smart Kidz Radio station, which plays informative songs about life skills, positive self-esteem, and core subjects for young children. Smart Kidz Media created this **FREE** station with family fun and education in mind. **On-demand options will be available in the near future. I will discuss that in detail below**

We listened to this radio station for approximately 25 minutes, five days a week. Our listening time was done while my younger two would be journaling, cleaning, helping in the kitchen, or reading. During this time I noted that the songs played on the radio were completely unique. I soon found out that this station features hundreds of original hits that you won’t hear anywhere else. Bam Bam and Princess enjoyed listening and dancing to most of the music they heard. Song subjects included body parts, being happy, good behavior, and various animals.

Some of the things we enjoyed about this radio programming were the song variety, stories, and ease of use. I found that on my Samsung phone, this works best via the Google Chrome browser. On Chrome, live play starts instantly upon sign in and continuously plays even while I’m doing other things on my phone. While listening you can also see the weather, local traffic, and other things via the menu. When using on your computer you can send the live stream to your mobile device via a QR code scanner. We didn’t try this option since my mobile browser worked perfectly. You can also submit a request for your child’s favorite song to be played.

Smart Kidz Radio Homeschool Reviews

Currently, Smart Kidz Media offers the radio station for FREE; however, a monthly subscription service will be available soon. On-Demand features will be added and for $3.99 monthly or $39 annually. Upon availability, a FREE 14 DAY TRIAL will be accessible to those interested in upgrading. Smart Kidz Radio will also be providing an app for Google Play and iTunes very soon.

Though the near future holds grand things for Smart Kidz Radio, don’t wait to tune-in to the FREE features. Smart Kidz Media has the desire to provide fun, original programming for children via this edutainment (educational entertainment) station.

Click the picture below to read additional reviews from the Homeschool Review Crew about Smart Kidz Radio.

Smart Kidz Radio {Smart Kidz Media Reviews}

Make this week entertaining,

Ta’Neisha K.

No Longer Little: Parenting Tweens with Grace and Hope (REVIEW)

No Longer Little: Parenting Tweens with Grace and Hope is the parental testimony of Hal and Melanie Young while raising children during their preteen and early teenage years. Published by Great Waters Press, the plethora of recommendations, anecdotes, and scripture provide is sure to educate and encourage parents.

The Youngs penned this book after being nearly blindsided by the changes in their preteen children. It suddenly seemed that years of advice wasn’t enough to prepare them for the hormones and other challenges that appear during this season. In order not to have the normal, strained or broken parent-child relationship this couple took to the word and power of God. Applying biblical parenting principles during the tween years kept their family relationship intact and No Longer Little was written soon thereafter.

Here are a few of my favorite highlights from the book:

  • Personal Anecdotes

The personal anecdotes within this book have the ability to draw in the reader. As you flip through the pages and have learned their story you find yourself not only understanding the authors more but being able to relate with they have dealt with to your own life. I found their honesty, openness, and their personal testimonies encouraging. Since the Youngs were able to share so much within these pages I find their advice easy to take and sensible.

  • Hot Topics

The topics within this book cover a vast array of conversations you might have with your preteen or early teenage child. The first of my favorite discussions is about one of the children deciding that they were an atheist. Rather than attack him for his beliefs, yell, and scream they decided to give him more details about God. They answered any questions that he had and were always prepared to provide biblical background and books to study for a clearer understanding. Before long, he cried out that he wanted to serve the God that had loved him so much since before birth and beyond.

My second mind-blowing discovery was the information that was presented about young girls and pornography. It’s easy to assume that pornography is something that only young boys will be tempted by but I never thought about the storylines created within those disgusting movies. The “romance” within scripts is created to entice women. These storylines give young girls, who are uneducated in life experiences, a skewed view that you can have continuous romantic, sexual, and passionate experiences over and over again outside of marriage. These views completely contradict our Christian beliefs. The Youngs explained the importance of speaking about sex to educate our children. Rather than avoid “the talk” like most parents do; be ready to answer any questions so your children consume God’s perspective on sex and not the world’s.

  • Communication is key!

Next, I noted that throughout the book this couple encourages parents to talk with their children about every single thing. Every page mentions discussion at least one time and that was so refreshing for me to read. I feel that a lot of times parents don’t want to deal with certain things but avoidance will only make it worse. I love how this book encourages families to talk it out rather than leave the children wondering or seeking information on their own. Using communication to work out conflict with siblings is also strongly encouraged. I also think it’s important to note that they included prayer as part of the communication process. So, not only are you talking things out with your children but you are also discussing them with your spouse while coming together and praying for your whole household. Communicating with God during these years is of utter importance because you want to make sure that you are handling issues the way that he wants you. Follow his plan, especially in parenting, so that you do not hinder your children’s progress during their walk on his narrow path.

  • Abundant Resources

Last but definitely not least I wanted to mention the abundant resources within this book. The footnotes of this book include a myriad of information for the written text. If they mention of a favorite book then the footnotes include that information. If scripture is mentioned the footnotes also provide that as well. It irks me when Christian books include the paraphrased passages of scripture so I was grateful No Longer Little had exact passage locations. After reading this book I now have some new goodies on my Amazon and Thirftbooks wish lists that I will be checking for soon.

No Longer Little: Parenting Tweens with Grace and Hope, published by Great Waters Press, contains a myriad of key tips for raising God-fearing young men and women. Hal and Melanie Young did a grand job capturing the essence of the physical, mental, and spiritual components of the young child’s mind. Their encouraging and engaging real-life stories provide a Christ-centered approach to parenting that is definitely needed in the world today.

Click the picture below to read the Homeschool Review Crew thoughts on No Longer Little: Parenting Tweens with Grace and Hope and Love, Honor, and Virtue: Gaining or Regaining a Biblical Attitude Toward Sexuality.

Love, Honor, and Virtue  AND No Longer Little {Great Waters Press Reviews}

Make this week grand,

Ta’Neisha K.

Library Fun for Kids

Recently, I shared a video on YouTube featuring some memories during our time at the local library. I’m grateful that our locations offer programs geared specifically towards homeschooling. Here is some footage of my cool kids enjoying library fun.

Hope you enjoyed the video! If your local library has not created programs for homeschoolers yet don’t be afraid to ask them. The efforts of myself and my friends encouraged our locations to create opportunities for local homeschoolers to socialize while we play and learn. A push from your homeschool community might do the same in your neck of the woods.

Make this week grand,

Ta’Neisha K.

We FINALLY Finished Exploring Countries and Cultures

Our journey with My Father’s World has been a joyous one with few mishaps and disappointments. We have thoroughly enjoyed all the lessons and commitment to Bible based history, geography, and language arts. After two years, we have FINALLY finished our journey through Exploring Countries and Cultures. I put this blog post together as a one stop shop for all things ECC. Check the lists below for details on how we have used this program in our homeschool.

ECC Final Review

ECC Experience Videos

ECC Haul Videos

ECC Blog Posts

I hope you enjoyed the final review and look back at our journey. We have already started our new school year and details on our curriculum are coming soon. Until then, be sure to follow our homeschool journey via @TeamKEMPacademy on Instagram. You can also catch video updates on our YouTube Channel.

Make this week grand,

Ta’Neisha K.

Review: Math Refresher For Adults

Some adults are intimidated by teaching or assisting their children with math. Well, Math Essentials has created the perfect solution via Math Refresher for Adults. This workbook provides review materials, example problems, and an online lesson library to enhance your skills.

Math Refresher for Adults is a power-packed workbook that features tips, technique, and reminders to enhance your math skills. This book can be worked through from beginning to end or you can use the table of contents to find a specific section of the study. Some of the topics covered include addition, subtraction, multiplication, division Chama fractions, decimals, percents, and geometry. Various parts of working with integers, algebra, charts, graphs, as well as word problems are also covered. Each section also includes a note-taking area and review questions

The back of the book includes a solutions sections with answers for each of the problems within the book. An alphabetized glossary is also available, giving definitions and examples of various mathematical terms. An important symbols page, multiplication table, prime number chart, squares and square roots chart, and a fraction/decimal equivalents chart are also included in the back. These resources pages are perfect to quickly reference as needed.

Each section includes access to accompanying video lessons. These are password protected and available via their website. The instructor clearly explains the material as they work through example problems. Additional,
password protected videos can also be accessed via a different website. This information and password are available in your book about and tips sections.

This workbook worked well in our home and was used by me at least twice a week. I decided to use post-it notes to separate the topics we covered in my refresher book each month. Prior to each lesson I reviewed the topic and checked to see if they were any problems that I could use to help teach Bear. For some occasions, I found this book was very helpful in preparing me to educate him during our school year. However, this will be a lot more helpful to me when it is time for him to get deeper into algebra and geometry. Those are the subjects I need to “refresh” the most so I will definitely refer to this book then.

Overall, Math Refresher for Adults will be a consistently used resource in our homeschool for years to come. This book would also make a great gift to those you know are preparing for something that requires them to update their math skills. Consider gifting this to those who are:

  • Returning to college
  • Helping children with their homework
  • Preparing for GED, SAT, PSAT, or PRAXIS test
  • Starting college
  • Job hunting and might need to take a math assessment
  • Preparing for Teacher’s Certification test
  • Teaching math or GED classes

Math is used by myself and my family daily in homeschool, cooking, grocery shopping, figuring out a tip, paying bills, or ordering things online. It is imperative to keep practicing this skill and learning more so that we are able to fully function in the world today. Math Essentials created Math Refresher for Adults to provide grown-ups with a convenient opportunity to reacclimate themselves with mathematics. Let the tips on these pages and in the videos help restore your confidence in this subject and make your job as a home educator much easier.

CLICK the photo below to read more Review Crew thoughts about Math Refresher for Adults by Math Essentials.

Math Refresher for Adults {Math Essentials}

Make this week grand,

Ta’Neisha K.

Review: Bible Study Guide For All Ages

This review needs no cute introduction because all the materials we received from Bible Study Guide For All Ages speak for themselves. Today, I’ll be discussing the Beginner (3-K) first-quarter lessons, Intermediate (3rd & 4th grade) first-quarter lessons, and the Wall Maps and Timeline set.

The Beginner (3-K) set includes Beginner Student Pages and a Beginner Time Line. The student pages for each lesson include a large picture of the story, comprehension questions, and activities. There was also plenty of reading on each page for adults and not children. I think the showcased text should be written for younger children since some can read by this age. Teaching dialogue is shown in bold text on these pages too but I think that should be included in a teacher key instead. The Beginner Time Line includes 34 colorful, card stock pictures designed to show major people and events in the Bible. These were perfect for Bam Bam and Princess to visualize the bible stories and they liked walking through the timeline each school morning. This was specifically designed for non-reading children but I think all younger children can benefit from using it.

The Intermediate (3rd & 4th grade) set includes Intermediate Student Pages, Intermediate Teacher Key, Bible Book Summary Cards. The Teacher Key provides detailed instructions for each lesson. Directives for the placement of the corresponding map and timeline labels are also given. A copy of each student page is shown providing the correct answers. Review questions, additional scriptures, and teaching tips are available for each lesson as well. The student pages break down the bible stories using activities, art, and questions to help your children dig deeper. Each lesson begins with memory review exercises to go over the biblical timeline and previous lessons. The large Bible Book Summary Cards are flash cards that represent the message of each book within the Bible. A description of the pictures and comprehension questions can be found on the back of each card. Bear enjoyed the discussion and activities but preferred to use the timeline rather than the book summary cards.

The Wall Maps and Timeline set
includes three large maps and a two-piece timeline covering creation until now. Three wall maps are provided which show important places mentioned throughout the bible. The timeline and maps are printed on high-quality paper but should be laminated if you want to keep them for a while. The labels, instructions, and keys can be found inside the three-ringed Label Book. This book includes cardstock labels for every lesson in this curriculum. Though the maps and timeline work hand in hand, they don’t need to be located along one wall. Our timelines are on one wall and the maps were placed on the adjacent wall. These items take up plenty of wall space but it is so worth it.

Overall the Bible Study Guide For All Ages curriculum paired well with our current history studies. I appreciated that all age groups covered the same material and each lesson was easy to present. I think the activities within the Beginner (3-K) and Intermediate (3rd & 4th grade) lessons were geared toward a traditional classroom setting but they can be modified for your homescool. We used this twice a week throughout the late Spring and early summer. The Wall Maps and Timeline set was my FAVORITE feature of this curriculum and we will definitely continue using it throughout our next school year.

Click the image below to read more Crew reviews about Bible Study Guide For All Ages.

Bible Study Guide For All Ages {Reviews}

Make this week grand,