Wednesday, September 20, 2017

HE Shall . . . {Wordless Wednesday}




Forever and ever and always,
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Thursday, September 14, 2017

Homeschool Review: Carole P. Roman Books (a family favorite) #hsreviews #childrenshistory #historystorybooks #culturalstudies


I have a confession.  I am addicted to books.  I like books of all kinds, but children's books (for the young and not-so-young) are my all-time favorites.  I fell in love with the world as a little girl through the pages of books, and I want my children to do the same.  Author Carole P. Roman has created the neatest series of books that take you on grand adventures and share historical and cultural information in a unique way AND I've recently been introduced to her Oh Susannah series of early chapter reader books that are just plain fun.  For this review, we have been reading If You Were Me and Lived in . . . the Ancient Mali Empire, If You Were Me and Lived in . . . Renaissance Italy, If You Were Me and Lived on . . . Mars, and Oh Susannah:  It's in the Bag.


Carole has a special way of weaving facts together to make for an interesting read.  I have been a fan of the history and culture books for years, and I really enjoyed meeting sweet and spunky Susannah, too.  All of Carole's books are brightly illustrated and invite you in to "sit a spell" and enjoy.   If you will so indulge me, I would like to share these newest four books to join our family library with you.

Books by Carole P Roman

The newest book of the cultural series, If You Were Me and Lived on . . . Mars (A Child's Introduction to Cultures Around the World, Volume 20) blasts you off from planet Earth on an adventure into the future to colonize planet Mars.  This 44-page softcover story is chock-full of information about the Red Planet and explains what life on Mars might actually consist of when/if we ever arrive.  Scientific statistics are weaved throughout as readers learn about temperature, gravity, orbit, moons, and space.  Reading through this book helps you imagine that life really can exist in deep space.  The Pronunciation Guide in the back of the book offers more in-depth definitions of the terminology introduced throughout.  If you like space, this book is for you.  Talk about FUN!


Now, you know how much we love history, so I know you'll understand my penchant for reading these next books:
Books by Carole P Roman


If You Were Me and Lived in . . . the Ancient Mali Empire (An Introduction to Civilizations Throughout Time, Volume 5) takes us back to the year 1332 at the rise of the Mali Empire.  This 78-page, softcover book begins by explaining what the word Mali means (hippopotamus, who knew?) and paints a picture of what it would have looked like 700 years ago.  Wow!  Explaining the government and economics in an easy-to-understand language, Carole truly takes the reader on the trip of a lifetime.  With a look at family life, religious life, daily life, and more, we feel like we've "been there, done that" as we study through the pages of history.  From clothing styles to what's on the table for dinner, we really see the big picture of life in Ancient Mali.  Although they didn't boil their peanuts like we do at our house, we discovered that the people of the Malian society liked many of the same things we do.  The Glossary in the back of the book makes sure that we are pronouncing words correctly and understanding what we read.  This is a great introduction to the Ancient Mali Empire.

Books by Carole P Roman


These non-fiction historical books are really such a fun way to add a personal touch to everyday studies.  If You Were Me and Lived in . . . Renaissance Italy (An Introduction to Civilizations Throughout Time, Volume 7) is a 56-page softcover book that leads you to explore the Tuscany region outside of Florence, Italy over 500 years ago.  My Elisabeth was excited to read that "if she had lived in Renaissance Italy" her name might have been quite similar.  Lisabetta was a popular girl name way back then -- spelled with an "s" and all.  It was interesting to read that most children did not attend school (welcome to original homeschool!) and that peacock was considered a delicacy (no, thank you!).  The clothing styles shared are simply beautiful and makes us almost wish that we could wear such intricately designed outfits.  I especially appreciate the introduction to the new age coming and the study of artists and other people important to the Renaissance period.  The Glossary helps make sure we say names and words correctly.  Again, this is a lovely addition to our resource library.  These books just make me happy.

And that brings me to my newest friend, eight-year-old Susannah Logan.

Books by Carole P Roman

Oh Susannah:  It's in the Bag (An Oh Susannah Story) is the very first book in a series of chapter books about Susannah.   Written with early readers in mind, but applicable to all of us, this 44-page softcover book will make you smile at the antics of a little girl pushed too far.   It's in the Bag shares about Susannah's really bad day and what she does to to make it through.  Although it is written with a younger crowd in mind, even this momma was reminded that we often fill our "bag" with burdens we aren't meant to carry alone.

And just for fun, I found that Oh Susannah is now available in a coloring book.  You (or your littles) can join in her many escapades and color away.  I would LOVE to have one of these for me.  Wouldn't that be a fun Christmas stocking find?

We really do love and appreciate all of these precious books by Carole P. Roman and I've mentioned before not to let the age recommendations scare you.  There really is a way to make them all fit into your family.  Older kids (and parents) will enjoy reading and using the history and cultural books as a starting place of adventure.  Younger kids will enjoy being read to and seeing the lovely pictures while they dream of journeys near and far.  And sweet Susannah has life lessons for us all.  Please do yourself a favor and check them out.

Carole P Roman

For more information about all of the fabulous books brought to you by Carole P. Roman check out the following Social Media Links:


We had the privilege of reviewing the history books last year and still keep them close by as a handy reference today.  You can read about our first impressions of Ancient Greece, Elizabethan England, The Middle Ages, and The American West and see how we incorporated them right into our high school history.  I'd also love for you to visit my earlier reviews of the precious cultural books from the original series.  You can see what we thought of Mexico, South Korea, France, and Norway AND check out the fun we had with Australia, Portugal, and Russia, too.  Good books can take you to places you've never been.  Are you up for an adventure?



Crew Disclaimer


I was given the opportunity to review this selection of books from Carole P. Roman as a member of the Homeschool Review Crew.   You can check out the Crew Review and see what other members of the Homeschool Review Crew thought of their special books.

Oh Susannah, Bedtime Stories, Captain No Beard, If you were Me ... {Carole P. Roman Reviews}
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Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Homeschool Review: Macbeth Study Guide (Progeny Press) #hsreviews #progenypress #literatureunitstudies #literaryanalysis

This is a review of the MacBeth E-Guide from Progeny Press.  Keep reading to see how we are using it at Long Leaf Academy.


During my Senior year of English, we committed portions of famous literature to memory and were required to stand before the class to recite them.  As I am sure my teacher intended, those passages and the literary classics from which they came have been branded into my mind ever since.  From Macbeth we quoted Lady Macbeth's famous lines from the sleepwalking scene:

Yet here's a spot.
Out, damned spot! out, I say!
and the chant of the Three Witches:

Double, double toil and trouble; 
Fire burn, and caldron bubble. 
It was almost scandalous for me to repeat those lines in front of people but I understood the importance of the writing.  As a homeschooling momma, I have always wanted to make sure that my children understand cultural references in college and in conversation so it has been important to me that we study the classics.  Shakespeare is a definite "must study" so I was excited to use the Macbeth E-Guide.  Progeny Press makes it easy for us to learn about all types of literature and it especially helps break down the language barrier that some find in the writings of Shakespeare.

Macbeth - E-Guide
The 54-page E-Guide begins with a special note on the introduction of Shakespeare to students and recommends a specific annotated edition of the play to read and study in order that your child not become frustrated in reading.  Parents are reminded that Shakespeare's works were written to be performed and not read.  I appreciated both the reminder and recommendation so was happy to have it.  Like you, I aim to set my daughter up for success.

The E-Guide shares a synopsis of the play, background information (the who, what, where,and when of Shakespeare's audience), and a short biographical sketch of the author himself.  We began our study here.  AFTER my daughter had read these sections, I assigned 3 of the 7 pre-reading activities suggested.  These included Scripture reading, map work, and a video on Scotland.  I asked her to copy favorite passages and quotes from the play as she read it into a notebook.  (Don't tell her, but these will become "quotables" in her upcoming Speech class.  It really was a good idea.)

Broken down by Acts, the E-Guide directs students to read one act at a time and then offers Vocabulary word work (matching exercises, synonyms, and dictionary usage), Scrambled Quotation work, short answer General Questions, Analysis, and Character Analysis work, a Dig Deeper Bible study section of questions that parallels the literary text with GOD's Word, AND Extra Activities that bring it all home.  These Extras include research, art, music, and drama.  With such a wide range of "extras", there is something to appeal to all students.  My daughter gravitates toward the art and music options, but I encourage her to choose a variety of "fun" activities to expand the class work.  By using all of these components together, she is able to get a clear picture of Macbeth as a whole.

The E-Guide format is perfect because it is interactive.  This means my girl types her answers directly into the study guide.  She loves this option as opposed to writing it all down on paper.  (I like that there is an 11-page Answer Key to help me grade her responses.  After all, it's been over 30 years since I studied Macbeth.)  Once she completes the entire guide, we will print it out and add it to her Literature notebook.  There are 8 Writing Projects found at the end of the E-Guide.  I had her choose 2 to write for Macbeth.  She adds these to her notebook as well.  There are Additional Resources recommended and we pick a few of those to add to our study.  We are enjoying watching the movie remakes of many of Shakespeare's plays.  When all of these components have been successfully completed, Progeny Press recommends that each Study Guide is the equivalent to 1/4 of a high school literature credit for students.  All completed work goes into her Literature notebook and we will assign credit accordingly at the end of the year.

Progeny Press offers a huge selection of literature study guides for students of all ages.  There are companion guides available for Kindergarten - High School level literature -- and college students and parents can benefit from them as well when they re-read and study old favorites.  My absolute favorite thing about these literary guides is that they are written from a Christian perspective.  How wonderful that we can use study guides for literature presented from a Christian perspective to earn credit on the high school transcript.  Each title in the Progeny Press literature curriculum has been well researched and I fell confident assigning it to my daughter to read and study through with no monitoring needed from me.  I know that all literary situations (the good, the bad, and the ugly) are fairly represented and that Progeny Press points my child to the WAY, the TRUTH, and the LIFE as she grasps a deeper understanding of literature through an in-depth study of the author, time period, and words of the text.  My daughter is learning how the authors actually craft their stories as she studies the theme and ideas introduced.  I like "big picture" learning.

Progeny Press

There really is something available for students at all grade levels at Progeny Press.  In our opinion, they continue excellence in all of their Study Guides.  It is nice to use resources that help bring books and plays to life in a way that makes students want to read.  Don't you agree?  You can find the perfect study for your family by visiting the following Social Media sites:

Progeny Press has a special way of turning the reading of a book from a "boring" assignment into a fascinating literary unit of exploration for my family.  We've used quite a few Progeny Press Study Guides through the years (you might remember our reviews of To Kill a Mockingbird,  Anne of Green GablesTreasure IslandThe Cay, and Julius Caesar) and they always make our school year much more interesting.  I was excited to add Macbeth to our study of Shakespeare this year.



Crew Disclaimer


I was given the opportunity to review MacBeth E-Guide from Progeny Press as a member of the Homeschool Review Crew.   You can check out the Crew Review and see what other members of the Homeschool Review Crew thought of this Study Guide and others.

Study Guides for Literature {Progeny Press Reviews}
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Sunday, September 10, 2017

I Sing for JOY {Scripture & a Snapshot}






Keep singing.  GOD is our help.




I'm joining with my friend Jennifer over at a glimpse of our life as we give glory to GOD through our photos.


Scripture and Snapshot
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Friday, September 8, 2017

Homeschool Review: Is There Anything Better Than Candy? (a fun Halloween tract to share) #hsreviews #ShareTheGospel #evangelism #halloweentract



It's beginning to feel a wee bit like Fall around here and that puts me in full-on planning mode.  Halloween candy has hit the aisle in my favorite supercenter and although we don't celebrate Halloween per se, we certainly celebrate Fall -- and that has me thinking about how I can use these precious pumpkin boxes to minister to kids this year at church.  We host an annual Trunk or Treat for the children in our community and I can't wait to share the Is There Anything Better Than Candy? Box-Tract from Let the Little Children Come with the families that attend.  For that matter, I can't wait to share them with the my Kid's Worship crew on Sunday night.  These little pumpkins are adorable -- and they hide an extra special sweet treat inside.  There's candy and JESUS, how about that?


The Halloween tracts come 20 to a package and they are super simple to put together.  Each pumpkin is on a perforated sheet of lightweight card stock that you separate and fold (or wrap) together.  The green stems fit into little slits on the top of each section (or petal) of the pumpkin to hold it sturdily in place.  The curvature of the stem fits perfectly into the little grooves, so you don't have to worry about your candy coming out OR being seen.
Let the Little Children Come Halloween Tract
Y'all, this is easy peasy and precious to boot.  Seriously, in less than two minutes I had carefully punched the pumpkin out, folded it up, and stored a few bite-sized candies inside.  (My pumpkin has three candies inside, but I could easily have added one or two more.)  There's nothing like fun presentation to grab the attention of littles, but I'm quite certain that tweens, teens, and adults are going to enjoy these, too.





I know the children are going to love receiving the candy, but the best part of all is that the special "container" shares OH, SO MUCH MORE than a sweet treat.  On the flip side of the pumpkin, children will learn that there is something MUCH better than candy -- SOMEONE who loves them more than anything else in this entire world and wants to be their friend for life.


As children unfold the pumpkin "petals" to find their candy treasure, they (and their parents) find six short readings that take them through the plan of salvation.   How cool is that?  Not only do children get candy, but they get something that is FAR BETTER than candy.  They are introduced to a GOD who adores them and wants to spend the rest of eternity with them.


Truly, friends, there is nothing better.  How wonderful it is to be able to share GOD with those around us.  Let the Little Children Come makes it easy for us to do just that.

You can connect with Let the Little Children Come and find out more about their other child evangelism tools by visiting the following Social Media sites:


Let the Little Children Come


Don't you agree that these little pumpkins would make for a perfect Halloween tract (or Fall Festival/Trunk or Treat tract, if you don't do Halloween) as an addition to the candy you are sharing with your community?  Isn't it fun to love on others and share how much more GOD loves them, too, in a way that totally gets their attention?  Share it big.



Crew Disclaimer


I was given the opportunity to review Is There Anything Better Than Candy? Box-Tract  from Let the Little Children Come as a member of the Homeschool Review Crew.   You can check out the Crew Review and see what other members of the Homeschool Review Crew thought of this Halloween tract and how they are planning to use them to share the love of JESUS with others.


Is There Anything Better Than Candy?  {Let The Little Children Come Reviews}
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Thursday, September 7, 2017

It's Starting to Look Like Fall, Y'all

There's a big pot of peanuts boiling on the stove:


And Fall wreaths (with out cowbell) hanging on the doors:





Fall is definitely in the air.

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Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Homeschool Review: Apologia's Exploring Creation with Marine Biology #hsreviews #MarineBio #homeschoolBiology


What I love about homeschooling is that I have the opportunity to customize my children's education in such a way that they are "all in".  This high school thing is for real, y'all, and I just don't want to do it without the resources from Apologia Educational Ministries.  My daughter is enjoying studying through the Marine Biology 2nd Edition Advantage Set this year and I like that it fits so neatly into where she has been and where she is headed.  We've been using Apologia Science for just about as long as I can remember and the early days of Exploring Creation with Swimming Creatures of the Fifth Day (Zoology 2) laid the perfect groundwork for Marine Biology in High School.

The Advantage Set makes it easy to "dive right in" (pun intended) as it includes the Textbook, the Tests-and-Solutions Manual, and the Student Notebook.  There is also a Tests Booklet included that allows my girl to take a test without having to tear it out of the Solutions Manual -- and it leaves me with a clean copy of all the tests right alongside the answer keys.  I love that my daughter is still "Exploring CREATION" in upper level science classes, and I cannot get over the fact that Apologia makes it so accessible.  The Marine Biology Advantage Set offers a GREAT science, and with one small addition, it is the PERFECT science.  Seriously, when you add the Marine Biology 2nd Edition Audio CD to the Textbook and Student Notebook, you've got the perfect science combination for students who want a college-prep, lab-based science that allows you to think out-of-the-box.  I don't know about yours, but this is EXACTLY what my daughter wants.

If you don't mind, I'd like to tell you a little more about each of the components of the Advantage Set and explain a bit how we are using it and the Audio CD here at Long Leaf Academy.  First, the Advantage Set includes:

  1. Exploring Creation with Marine Biology 2nd Edition TEXTBOOK -- This textbook is massive.  It is a hardcover book with 557-pages, fully illustrated.  It is written directly to the student in a conversational tone and is broken down into 16 learning modules.  Students can complete each module in about 2 weeks time if they will devote 45 minutes to an hour in study and lab work.  Perfect for my independent learner, this comprehensive text begins with a study of the oceans and works through marine life and all that it entails.  From invertebrates and vertebrates found in the ocean to the environment of the deep blue, students are reminded that GOD created it all and we are to be good stewards of HIS world.  I love that GOD's Word is referenced throughout the text and that every word in the text is centered on CHRIST and bringing HIM glory .  There is so much to explore and learn in the depths of the seas and this text does a great job with it all.  The experiments and dissections make for a thorough lab credit and the study guides and summaries for each module prepare your high schooler for the tests to come.  My Junior handles this all on her own.  She follows the schedule provided in the Student Notebook and spends her time reading, answering, and researching.  She is LEARNING and I love this.
  2. Marine Biology 2nd Edition Advantage Set
  3. Solutions and Tests for Exploring Creation with Marine Biology 2nd Edition -- This softcover MANUAL has 212-pages and is designed with the homeschooling parent in mind.  I'm not a marine biology expert and it's been YEARS since I even studied the depths of the ocean.  Thankfully, Apologia has my back.  While the Textbook is written to my daughter, the MANUAL is written for me.  It explains to me what my child is learning and how the material is being presented to her so that I can come alongside her when she needs help.  All of the answers to the Study Guides she is using are compiled for me and the Tests are ready to be used as is.  The MANUAL tells me how to grade her work and how to assign points for the things that she completes.  The weighted coursework is explained and I feel confident that I will be able to assign her final grade by following the suggested grading scale.
  4. Marine Biology 2nd Edition Advantage Set
  5. Exploring Creation with Marine Biology 2nd Edition STUDENT NOTEBOOK -- Okay, y'all   . . . this is PHENOMENAL.  And my girl LOVES it because it makes her life so much easier.  The STUDENT NOTEBOOK is a coil-bound book that contains a whopping 505-pages.  The pages of the NOTEBOOK correspond with the 16 modules of study from the Textbook.  That means each and every section of questions found in the Textbook have a special place for her to put her answers in the NOTEBOOK.  In addition to that, she has the grading rubrics for all experiments, notetaking hints and helps, a detailed daily schedule that allows her to check off work once she's done, lined pages for taking notes in each module, lab sheets for experiments and their reports, AND extra summary work right at her fingertips.  It is the easy button of scientific notebooks and she thinks it is just perfect because it is 100% her customization.

As you can tell, we really like the Advantage Set and adding the Exploring Creation with Marine Biology 2nd Edition MP3 Audio Book is the icing on the cake for this high school science.   The CD is a COMPLETE reading of the TEXTBOOK and is my absolute favorite part of the course because my daughter will actually LISTEN to it as she follows along in her book.  The material is read by Marissa Leinart and is an easy listen.  My daughter says that it is absolutely NOT boring.  If it weren't for that CD, she'd be skimming the book JUST looking for the ANSWERS and wouldn't be totally immersed in the educational experience.  I snapped this picture when she first started working through the course and I just love all that it is.  Do you see the many facets of learning going on in her room?  My girl is soaking it all in.  There is the visual learning process as she reads the text combined with the complementary auditory component (check out those earbuds) that helps bring it all to life for her.  How perfect is this? Her STUDENT NOTEBOOK sits at the ready for jotting down important information.  She can see it, feel it, and hear it all and that means she is learning.  



And even more fun?  We'll be adding to this experience soon when we open up her Dissection Set and she begins dissecting the clam, sea star, and dogfish shark.  Although the Dissection Set isn't required to complete the course, we think it is well worth it to provide the hands-on lab component.  PLUS, my daughter enjoyed the dissection portions of the prerequisite Biology.

Apologia has long been one of our family favorites -- from science curriculum to personal encouragement and devotions for momApologia has you covered.  If you've been a part of the Apologia family, then I'm sure you are familiar with the Book Extras that are available for each of their textbooks.  I want to encourage you to make use of those for Marine Biology.  The special website has even more material for your student and it's recently undergone a complete makeover to be more user-friendly.  You can also connect with Apologia and find out how they can best serve your family through the following Social Media links:


It's Homeschool Marine Biology from Apologia for the win at my house. Why don't you join us?



Crew Disclaimer


I was given the opportunity to review  Marine Biology 2nd Edition Advantage Set  from Apologia Educational Ministries as a member of the Homeschool Review Crew.   You can check out the Crew Review and see what other members of the Homeschool Review Crew thought of this high school science.


Marine Biology 2nd Edition Advantage Set {Apologia Educational Ministries Review}
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