Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Apologia Flying Creatures of the Fifth Day Lapbook from A Journey Through Learning Lapbooks: A TOS Crew Review

A Journey Through Learning
Apologia Flying Creatures of the Fifth Day Lapbook
Apologia Flying Creatures of the Fifth Day Lapbook from A Journey Through Learning Lapbooks

We love lapbooks at Bentz Academy and we can't wait to introduce you to our newest adventure - Apologia Flying Creatures of the Fifth Day Lapbook from A Journey Through Learning Lapbooks.

This learning lapbook comes as a PDF download that you can print at home.  You may be wondering... What is a Lapbook?  Check out this introductory video.  Lapbooks are an interactive way to get your 2nd - 7th graders involved in learning.  Since we are currently using Apologia's Young Explorer Series at our Co-op science, this was a perfect addition.  You can find dozens of Lapbook titles to match what you are studying, or create your own unit study with a theme.

For this lapbook, you get PDF files in both black & white or color options.  We choose the color option, and are delighted with how it looks!  This is a GIANT resource - 177 pages.  It contains a lapbook for each lesson in the book - 14 in all.  You will need the textbook to accompany this lapbook.

The lapbook folder includes mini books for specific topics covered in each lesson.  By involving your student in the hands-on part of creating them, the learning really sticks.   We love the HUGE variety of mini books in A Journey Through Learning's lapbooks - you get copywork, diagrams, flaps, wheels, and more.  Best of all - it's all designed for you, ready to print and in color!

You simply print the pages, and give them a file folder, some glue, staple and brads.  They get to do the rest. 

Each page shows which lesson it is for, and gives clear directions on how to assemble the minibook, where to place in in the lapbook, and where to find the information in the text.  It's really so easy!

 My testers are in 3rd (daughter), 4th (daughter), and 6th (son).  I will admit that my daughters truly love lapbooking,  my son - a little less.  But, we have found a way that makes it less intimidating -  I do all the cutting ahead of time, and put each minibook into a zippered bag.  He still does all the finding of the information, and placing it in the lapbook.  He's actively involved, and super proud of his creation.  It's hard having crafty sisters...

In addition to the lapbooks for each lesson, this PDF gives you plenty help if you are new to lapbooking.  They have full color instructions for folding, assembling and even storing your lapbooks.

Digging Deeper page offers additional reading selections to go with each lesson.  Enrichment pages are blank pages you can use to create book logs, book reports, and even pages to record narration.

 A full Answer key is included - a big help for moms that haven't read yet...

 Here's a quick page of products that they offer - you will find something for everyone here, including popular programs like Classical Conversations. You can really easily add lapbooking to any subject, or even as a individual learning project.

We have been using their products for years.  I love looking back on how much they have grown, how their handwriting and changed, and what we explored together.  Lapbooks make a keepsake out of your learning.  I feel A Journey Through Learning makes some of the highest quality lapbooks you can buy.  They are easy to use, and super affordable.

One thing you'll never see with boring old workbooks... BIG smiles that want to show off what they learned!

Other members of the Crew reviewed other great products - be sure to check them out!

Find A Journey Through Learning Lapbooks on Social Media:

Twiiter:  https://twitter.com/AJTL_Lapbooks  @AJTL_lapbooks

Hashtags:  #hsreviews #lapbooks #lapbooking #historynotebooking #sciencenotebooking

See what other members of the Crew thought here

Lapbooks for Classical Conversations, Apologia, Inventors & 20th Century {A Journey Through Learning Lapbooks Reviews}

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Everyone should have an Uncle Dave!

We had a great time with Uncle Dave!  Everyone should have an Uncle Dave - we have 2!  This one is Matt's brother, and he came for a staycation with us in our final week of summer.

 He's the best swim coach ever, and had everyone swimming laps in no time!

Some of them even earned a Great Wolf swim cap!

All trips to San Antonio end up at the Alamo!

He played tons of Authors with them too!

Come back soon Uncle Dave!

Thursday, August 24, 2017

The Everyday Family Chore System from Everyday Homemaking: A TOS Crew Review

Everyday Homemaking
The Everyday FAMILY Chore System

The Everyday Family Chore System from Everyday Homemaking

I've heard a great quote somewhere..."Nothing is more hopeful than an mom with a new chore chart?" I have been inspired to update our chore system by the The Everyday Family Chore System from Everyday Homemaking.

This PDF download from author Vicki Bentley is 88 pages packed with inspiration and practical tips to start training your children in the art of managing a home. She explains how developing this chore system helped her family.  I couldn't agree more - we reviewed this back in 2012.  Little did we know then, I would struggle with my health (I'm celebrating being cancer free for 4 years!)  Having trained my children in routines and responsibilities, many taken from this system, my children kept our home running smoothly - even when I wasn't able to.  This has been such a gift to our family!

The book is broken into several parts -

Part 1: Laying the foundation - This is the philosophy part. If you need motivation as to the "why" of kids and chores - don't skip this part. You will be inspired to start seeing your kids as you want them to be in the future. It all comes down to simple principles like -

Have realistic and age-appropriate expectations. Establish rules or standards. Have a working knowledge of family discipline. Tie strings to their hearts.

Part 2: Implementing the Plan - Here's where the experience of the author shows through (a fellow mom of eight and foster mom to fifty!). I really enjoyed the Life Skill checklists - organized by age. She offers numerous variations of the basic plan - you customize to what will work best in your family. I loved her ideas about using the wooden clothespins with chores attached - "Kid on a mission!"  Now that my children are older, we can use a simpler version of a chart posted where everyone can see it.

Part 3: The Actual Chore System - The nuts and bolts so to speak. Printable chore cards, includingh blank ones you can write in chores specific to your family. Rereading this has inspired me to add more variety to our chores... not just the basics like making your bed and cleaning the bathroom.  Her chore cards are filled with great ideas beyond basics like washing the car, assistant cook, and cleaning out the toaster (we need this!)  I've printed the chore cards and put them in a cup for our counter.  These are a great training tool!  For variety, I let them pick one to do each day.  If I need a handy behavior modification (you know what I mean...kids that are arguing with each other)  they can pick one from the jar and spend some time together blessing the family :-)  A  "job box" is a place to put your occasional chores to be done.

My favorite are- the "How-to-do-it Cards".  With these printable cards you can make sure they understand what needs to be completed in order to complete the chore. No more "misunderstandings" of their mission!

I love this system!  It has been a blessing to our family.  It's simple and uncluttered, you don't need to create elaborate systems to manage chores - but, you can train your children to manage your home without you.  Isn't that our goal?

Other members of the Crew took a look at another helpful tool - Everyday Cooking, you should too! You can get 10% off this book or her Everyday Cooking book through September 5, 2017. Click here to access her store, then put in discount code TOS10books at the checkout.

Find Everyday Homemaking on Facebook     @everydayhomemaking   

Hashtags: #hsreviews , #homemaking, #chores

See what other members of the Crew thought here

Everyday Cooking and Chores Systems for your Family {Everyday Homemaking Reviews}

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Tuesday, August 22, 2017

One more beach memory...

Just a few more - our beach vacation is always so bittersweet...  school starts when we get back!

I love their personalities shining through!!   The joys of my life...

When did they get taller than dad??

Monday, August 14, 2017

Making Memories

Here's a few beach moments I don't want to forget...

Holding hands with dad...

These three little boys... in big boy bodies!

The best of friends - forever!

Watch out - the Bentz Bunch is taking over the beach!  (the hat didn't make it through the waves...)

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

No-Nonsense Algebra from Math Essentials: A TOS Crew Review

Math Essentials
No-Nonsense Algebra

No-Nonsense Algebra from Math Essentials

Does Algebra make you want to cry? I'm getting to my 4th child, who has my math ability - and we are both in tears. But no more - we found a way to master Algebra with no more tears! No-Nonsense Algebra from Math Essentials is like having your own private algebra tutor 24/7. Especially important around here, since my "tutor" went to college last year...

This soft-cover, 275 page book is a complete system for teaching Algebra. Students can work independently through 10 chapters which include self-contained lessons for each topic covered. The topics build on each other, and algebra is presented in a simple, logical, step-by-step fashion. The chapters cover:
  • Chapter 1: Necessary Tools for Algebra
  • Chapter 2: Solving Equations
  • Chapter 3: Graphing and Linear Equations
  • Chapter 4: Solving and Graphing Inequalities
  • Chapter 5: Systems of Linear Equations and Inequalities
  • Chapter 6: Polynomials
  • Chapter 7: Rational Expressions (Algebraic Fractions)
  • Chapter 8: Radical Expressions and Geometry
  • Chapter 9: Quadratic Equations
  • Chapter 10: Algebra Word Problems

You can use this program to effectively teach Algebra, or as a supplement to reinforce and master essential skills. My tester is using this to help as supplement for her regular program, and I am using it a teacher tool for brushing up on concepts I have forgotten ;-) 

Each lesson contains an introduction and explanation of the topic. Written step-by-step examples are included along with helpful hints that teach important shortcuts and tips. Exercises with review sections give the student a chance to practice their skills. A comprehensive final exam is included as well.

The book also features a glossary of important information for student reference. Formulas, symbols, prime numbers, squares and fraction/decimal equivalents are great for student reference. Solutions for all problems are included for teacher reference.

Hands down our favorite part is the Free online video lessons that correspond with each lesson in the book. The author, Richard W. Fisher guides the student through each topic carefully, step-by-step in the video in a white board style.  

We decided to make this resource work best for us, we would pick and choose topics from the lessons that covered concepts my tester was struggling with.   
After watching the videos, my tester was able to work through the lessons.  Best of all - we didn't even cry!

This is a handy tool to have when you need help with Algebra and the college kid is away!  It's very flexible, affordable and easy to use.

No-Nonsense Algebra {Math Essentials Reviews}

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