Building Thinking Skills with The Critical Thinking Company

Disclosure: I received this complimentary product through the Homeschool Review Crew
The Critical Thinking Co.™

If you’ve been hanging around a while, you probably know that we really enjoy The Critical Thinking Co. products in our homeschool (their catalogue is really fun to browse, too! I always love it when we get one in the mail). We have been using Building Thinking Skills® Level 2 -Grades 4-6 (Ages 9-12) for a little summer enrichment.

What Is It?

Building Thinking Skills® Level 2 -Grades 4-6 (Ages 9-12) is a full, complete logic/critical thinking skills program. We are using it to sort of … sum up, refresh and expand our learning over the summer. While we are continuing with our regular school subjects 3+ days a week, we are also being intentional about fun and supplemental learning. This book definitely falls into the fun and supplemental categories for us.

If your student(s) are specifically in need of a critical thinking curriculum for state/transcript purposes, this is perfect for you! It is also a reproducible license within your home, so families with multiple children can make copies without fear of copyright problems. I have children in 4th and 6th grades, so they have both been working through this.

This is is a physical, full color workbook that is designed to help students build higher order thinking skills, by working through areas of logical thinking, vocabulary, spatial awareness, classification, analogies, and so, so much more! This book is 412 pages, broken up into 10 chapters, with an answer key and expansions, in the back.

Students will focus on a specific area for each chapter:

  1. describing shapes
  2. figural similarities and differences
  3. figural sequence
  4. figural classification
  5. figural analogies
  6. describing things
  7. similarities
  8. sequencing
  9. verbal classification
  10. verbal analogies

The chapters are broken down further, into categories. For example, chapter 1- Describing Shapes- is broken down into topics of describing shapes, quadrilaterals, triangles, and solids, recognizing folded patterns for solids, describing position, describing stacks of shapes, and estimating area.

Building Critical Thinking Skills: The Critical Thinking Company

This book really does help build thinking skills for reading, writing, math, and science. For example, the language used to describe and classify is a huge help for expanding on descriptive writing. The engaging activities are developmentally sequenced, meaning they begin first in the semi-concrete, figural-spatial form. Then move forward from there to verbal, or more abstract concepts. This is so great, because not all students in the same grade are at the same level, but also it is a gradual growth. Children are getting the foundational work in that is required for the more abstract thinking. So even if the beginning chapters seem too simple, they aren’t!

Building Critical Thinking Skills: The Critical Thinking Company

Analyzing relationships between objects, words, and then both together builds academic vocabulary, math concepts, and skills. Skills such as observing, recognizing and describing characteristics, understanding similarities and differences, and working through analogies. (Anyone else struggle to get their children to use their great vocabulary and language in their writing?! Well, this helps tremendously.) The verbal skills used and built later in the book help with spelling, writing, following multiple step directions, map reading, logic, orientation and so much more.

This is going to be developmentally appropriate for you kids, and a great curriculum to build those critical, independent thinking skills we want our kids to have.

The Critical Thinking Company also offers free Math & Critical Thinking Worksheets (PDFs), and a few other things on their site.

Read other reviews from the Crew for this and other The Critical Thinking Co. programs:

Critical Thinking


Disclaimer: Some links on this blog are affiliate links; when you use those links you help support my family, at no additional cost to you.  Thank you!

Holland Lops, Health, and Herbs: Friday on the Farm

This Friday on the Farm is brought to you by a dear friend, who shared some bunnies with our family.

I always joke with my husband that about the time my youngest is turning 2, I get antsy because Im used to having another baby on the way! So when we don’t have another human baby on the way, we end up with more baby animals… This addition is bunnies!

These bunnies came in a larger group at a sale; they were all a bit sickly and needed some extra care. My friend nursed them for a while, and then we took on these 2. We are still nursing them, and I can get into those details in a bit.

Meet Dandelion and Plantain- affectionately named after their favorite foods. 😂

These girls appear to be Holland Lops; Im going off of the crown of hair on the back of their heads, the size of their heads, and their personalities. Dandy is the brown girl, and Plantain is the tri-color. These girls are so sweet, but Plantain isn’t super excited about being held yet. She is getting much easier to pet though. Dandy is a happy, chill girl while Plantain is much more curious and bouncy.

Nursing Sick Holland Lops: herbals and supplements

These girls have already fattened up a bit. We pick buckets of dandelions and plantain leaves for them every day, and they love them! They had a little soft poop when they got here last Sunday, probably due to stress, so I looked up what plants to feed them. So far these have helped them a lot! At the bottom of this post, I will add links to the websites I’ve been using to reference herbs.

Before they made it here, my friend was using echinacea tea and diluted silver in a spray bottle. They were improving. Once I got them here, I thought it might be good to switch things up every few weeks. So we began:

  • Vetericyn Spray in eyes and nose (they dont mind this a bit)
  • grapefruit seed extract in their water
  • dandelions and plantain leaves from the yard, for their medicinal and immune building benefits
  • I just started them back on ecchinacea tea (had to order some without elderberry in it)
  • Im adding 1/4tsp a week of Molly’s Herbal wormer. This is what we use for our goats, I need to use it for our dogs, and so I thought it would be a great addition for these girls.

Side note: We got the C Virus in January and it came along with pink eye. Ever since then whenever we get sick, I end up with pink eye and so do a few of the kids. Because it is usually viral, my colloidal silver will make it go away, but hasn’t been keeping it from coming back a day or 2 later. This time someone recommended we try the Vetericyn spray in our eyes. IT WORKED! it took about 2 days each, and our eyes were clear. It took a little longer for the toddler, but that’s probably because he’s obsessed with blowing his nose right now, and wiping it all over his face 🤦‍♀️ I know. I know. He’s almost 2 y’all, and I give up. 😂

We always use this on our animals, but I am not keeping it in our human first aid kit as well.



Here are the links Ive been referencing so far:

If you have any tips for a new rabbit owner, feel free to share those with me. Also, we may have miss on one, so I think we will call the vet and ask about that.

And if you have any specific questions, feel free to leave a comment and I will get back with you. If I can’t help, I will ask someone who can. =)

Disclaimer: Some links on this blog are affiliate links; when you use those links you help support my family, at no additional cost to you.  Thank you!

Wholesome Family Chapter Books (mid grade): Whatsoever Stories

Disclosure: I received this complimentary product through the Homeschool Review Crew

Whatsoever Stories

(Can we just take a minute and appreciate the logo above?! 😍)

 I am always running out of books for my oldest. She is almost 12, a voracious reader, and loves to read anything she can get her hands on. My oldest son is almost 10, and he really enjoys adventure animal stories, and historical fiction.

I love finding wholesome books that leave an impact on my children; the kind of books that have them asking questions while they’re reading, and when they’ve finished. That’s why I was so excited for Whatsoever Stories‘s Trial At The Ridge, by Kinsey M. Rockett. This is a beautiful fiction book that your entire family will enjoy!

Trial at the Ridge: Kinsey M Rockett- wholesome family books

Trial At the Ridge

This is the story of the Whitlocks, a God loving family, and their life on the place they call home. Their farm. When they are threatened with foreclosure, we watch as the family handles it with grace, and love. Although the plans put in place to save the farm continuously get derailed, they find a way to make it work, all the while working together.

My daughter says:

My favorite part was when the too friendly cat jumped on the shoulder of a man wanting to buy the farm. I also liked that there were some hard words, and it gave their definitions. I enjoyed the book because it was dangerous and they were Godly people, that makes it different from a lot of books I’ve read.

While this book is generally written for a 10+ audience on an independent reading level, it will make a wonderful family read aloud! Kinsey has written a book that is definitely going to be enjoyed by parents, grandparents, and kids alike. With the beautiful glossy cover, easy to turn pages, and easy to read font, the 188 page book is going to make a great read aloud, or reader. I would say that using copywork from the book would be super easy too, with witty dialogue and scripture throughout (did I mention the vocabulary?!). Of course it would make great leisure reading as well. The binding is sturdy, and overall I love how the book feels in my hands- it really is just right. =)

Trial at the Ridge: Kinsey M Rockett- wholesome family books

What I love is that my children are reading books by a Christian author, the storyline isn’t introducing my kids to a plot or attitudes we do not value (no agenda, or worldly kid/teen “problems” here!), and the* vocabulary!* I loved reading the language Kinsey used in her book to draw in the reader. Add to that actual vocabulary words and references in footnotes throughout the book, a glossary, and her Not All Fiction section at the back of the book, and I am here for it! Kinsey is a homeschool graduate 🥳, and her love for the Lord clearly shines through her writing.

Trial at the Ridge: Kinsey M Rockett- wholesome family books

I can’t wait to read her book, Prisoner of War, which features many of the same characters. I know the kids will love it as a fun read aloud this summer.


To read more Crew reviews of Kinsey M. Rockett’s books by Whatsoever Stories, click the banner below:
Christian Fiction Stories

Disclaimer: Some links on this blog are affiliate links; when you use those links you help support my family, at no additional cost to you.  Thank you!

Famous Men of Rome- Classical Education Homeschool History

Disclosure: I received this complimentary product through the Homeschool Review Crew

Memoria Press

Memoria Press is known for their great classical education curricula and programs. We’ve used their Latin program, and a few other products. The last few weeks my 11 year old has been working through their Famous Men of Rome program. This is geared towards grades 4-5, and is an introduction to the great drama and action, beginning to end, that was the men of Rome. This is going to be a wonderful addition to any classical history, or eclectic homeschool.

Famous Men of Rome: Memoria Press

What It Is

Famous Men of Rome is a year long study consisting of 3 books and flash cards. The text or reader contains 30 stories documenting the rise and fall of this civilization via 30 biographies of men from Rome. The illustrations and artwork in the textbook are absolutely beautiful; this is one of my and my daughter’s favorite parts of this book! The pages are thick, and glossy. The pages are not hard on my eyes, but are just glossy enough to make the artwork pop. The pages are also the thickness and material that allows the pages to stay open more easily, which I really like!

Famous Men of Rome: Memoria Press

There are 160 pages in the textbook, including the maps, pronunciation guide, and glossary. The program covers
the biographical stories of:

  • NERO

The student guide is where most of the work will be done by the student. This newest edition also contains maps of: Rome, Italy, and the Roman Empire, as well as a glossary of people and places. These pages are a regular paper, easy for writing, and do not feature any distractions. Students will find interesting lessons that include famous quotes, key people and places, vocabulary words, and comprehension questions. There is map work as well, which most homeschool parents love to include in our studies. =)

Along with all the comprehension questions, facts to know, vocabulary, and review lessons, I really like the activities listed for each lesson. The lessons help make this an even more comprehensive program, but add hands on elements.

Famous Men of Rome: Memoria Press

example of activities at end of lesson

These activities include discussion questions, but also many will translate well to discussion questions and starters. There are also research activities in some lessons. My daughter really enjoyed the family tree activity, and because we enjoy mapping, that has been fun for her as well.

Famous Men of Rome: Memoria Press

In true classical education style, the program includes memorization for the student. The Drill Questions found in the appendix of the study guide and on the flashcards, will be memorized to help student have instant recall. How to do this, and how to use the program in general is all outlined for the teacher in the teacher’s guide. The teacher’s guide is just that- you will find detailed answers, examples, and what is expected of the student. I *love* this because it helps those of us learning right along side our children know what is expected of them, and how to better help them get there. I also like to have my child look at the teacher’s guide once we have completed a lesson, so they can see where they needed improvement and where they did exactly what was asked of them.

I am working more closely with my 5th grader on this program, because she is ready for more detailed responses in her work (clearly … haha). This is a great program for student to begin more independent work, or to be used as a family/with the parent. The text can be shared between students in a family, or read aloud by the teacher during morning time. Each child can have their own student book, or some students may work from the student guide, and others work orally (for younger kiddos), or maybe orally and by drawing illustrations.

I think this is going to work well for any family that is learning about Rome in history (one of our favorite things we have studied!), whether they are a classical education family, or more eclectic like ours. We love learning using many educational philosophies, and tweak anything we use to work for us! So if memorization isn’t your thing, this program can still work well for you. This is also going to work well for independent learners or as a family subject. The possibilities are truly endless.

Lastly, the flashcards are exactly that. They feature questions about people and places learned about in the stories from Famous Men of Rome, and are used to help their recall and easy memorization of what they are learning.

Memoria Press always offers great programs and supplements, and their Famous Men of Rome set is no different. I highly recommend this for any family studying this phase of history.

Famous Men of Rome: Memoria Press


Connect with Memoria Press

Read more reviews from the Crew for different Memoria Press programs:Classical Christian Education

Disclaimer: Some links on this blog are affiliate links; when you use those links you help support my family, at no additional cost to you.  Thank you!

IEW Fix It! Grammar

Disclosure: I received this complimentary product through the Homeschool Review Crew

Institute for Excellence in Writing (IEW)I’m pretty sure the reputation of the Institute for Excellence in Writing (IEW) has a reputation that precedes itself. The founder, Andrew Pudewa, has created one of the best homeschool writing and grammar companies out there. My son has really enjoyed the new and improved third edition of Fix It! Grammar for Level 2 Town Mouse and Country Mouse. The improved updated editions of their grammar program are more engaging and useful for students and parents. We are used the super helpful Fix It! Grammar Cards.

What It Is

IEW Fit It! Grammar is an easy, effective and engaging grammar program for grades 3+. Each book is labeled for its appropriate grade levels; the level 2 we used is for grades 3-5. Lessons are divided into weeks, number 1-30, with 4 days of work scheduled. Lessons are short and fun! students will find each week has a few pages of parts of speech definitions for the week. This is where they Learn It!- students read over the definitions and clearly laid out example before applying their knowledge to the day’s lesson.

Each day’s lesson is divided into sections across the top of the page:

  • Read It- Here, students read the passage and use the dictionary to find the word, and write the definition. This can be done in the blank space on the page, or in a notebook. Each of my kids keep a writing notebook, so we made a spot for definitions there
  • Mark It!- Students use the marks taught for the different parts of speech to label the passage.
  • Fix It!- Now they get to correct the mistakes in the sentence, using the editing marks provided on the instructions page of the student book
  • Re-Write It!- Students rewrite the passage correctly on the given lines found on the page.

I really like that the new edition lets students know how many of each label is needed for the passage. The complete story being focused on for the level is found in the back of the student book.

IEW Fix It! Grammar

Each day we discussed his work, and made corrections (yes, I did have him go back and correct is spelling mistakes 😂). This could be done with older students 1x per week. I really love that he gets to use the teacher’s manual to go back and fix his mistakes. because the pages are laid out so clearly and look just like his (plus a few extra notes to help), he gets to see where he made a mistake and why. Over time this helps him recognize and avoid them later. Lessons are short and sweet, so they will fit many homeschooler’s lifestyle well.

It took my 9yo about 15 minutes total, including me looking over it and helping if he was not grasping something. He really enjoys that these are like doing a puzzle; he especially likes checking his own work and seeing what he need to correct.

The Teacher’s Guide is important for this program, simply because students use it also. This will help homeschool parents get their students learning independently, with review and corrections done with the parent. Because we want our kids to be self motivated, independent learners! That’s one of the goals for many homeschoolers (and certainly our family). I like that the teacher’s guide not only gives the corrections in bold, but also the vocabulary definition, and end mark explanations.

IEW Fix It! Grammar

Teacher’s Guide correlating lesson page

The scope and sequence will help families plan their weeks/term/year as necessary to span the year. The scope and sequence lists what will be learned broken down into weeks. There is also page with the full vocabulary list for each week.

Fix It! Grammar level 2 covers:

  • parts of speech
  • capitalization
  • punctuation
  • commas
  • clauses
  • homophones
  • indention
  • numbers
  • subject-verb pairs
  • and 8 stylistic techniques

IEW Fix It! Grammar

The grammar cards are a great addition to the grammar; 30 cards highlight key grammar concepts. These are very helpful for review and quick reference. The program will also come with free downloads to help parents with implementing the IEW method of learning writing. These are very helpful mp3s- I love how Andrew Pudewa talks about aptitude and appetite, and how this affects our children and homeschool atmosphere. You’re going to love it!

I’m very excited to continue using Fix It! Grammar level 2 in our homeschool; it is going to be a lot of fun for my son and I know he is learning while doing it.

IEW Fix It! Grammar- level 2

Connect With Institute for Excellence in Writing

Check out more reviews for varying levels of IEW Fix It! Grammar from the Crew:

Homeschool Grammar Curriculum

Disclaimer: Some links on this blog are affiliate links; when you use those links you help support my family, at no additional cost to you.  Thank you!

Spring Activities for Your Homeschool

This time of year is one of my absolute favorites! I’ll be honest, it doesn’t feel like we have a “real” spring every year; most years we either have an extended winter, and go right into summer, or it gets hot fast, making spring short.

This year, we are getting a beautiful, *real* spring and it makes me want to do all the things!

I have always lived in seasons-from the foods I cook for my family, the decor in our home, to the books I read, it all revolves around the mood of the season. So I was thinking about blog ideas I could share with my readers that include the things I love, but would encourage putting down our phones/devices and get outdoors.

homeschool Spring Activities

  • School outside-It is windy most of the time in KS, so we have to pick and choose the best days during any season to school outside. But spring offers the most days. We love to sit outside on the porch and do our morning time. Or read on the picnic blankets out back, in the afternoon. If you live in the north or the south, it can be a challenge catching a warm or cool enough day. SO take advantage of the spring weather!
  • Walk in the woods-just like any other time of the year, walking in the woods provides so much opportunity for learning! Listening to birds, bugs, frogs, and identifying each is so much fun in spring! The flowers, wildflowers, and trees are all coming to life, and attracting wildlife.
  • No Sweat Nature Study– this is a beautiful, easy addition to any homeschool; we especially love it in spring! The weather is so perfect for exploring all the nature we are learning about in Cindy’s videos.
  • No Sweat Nature Study podcast- this is all new, created by Cindy. We listened to 2 episodes this morning and all my kids were instantly inspired to go on a nature walk, sketch a peeper, or read about the topic.
  • Camping and hiking- Depending on the age of your kids, camping can be so easy. But even with 5 kiddos, one of those being a baby, it is always *worth it* for our family to venture out.  Time spent outside as a family, uninterrupted by “work” or other stressors, allows for a lot of bonding time.
  • If you’re interested in hearing more about adventuring with your family, even when it feels like more work than play, check out this podcast episode from Read Aloud Revival . I love how they discuss that when all we remember are the not fun parts, getting frustrated, etc kids always remember the fun.
  • Enjoy arts and crafts more- this time of year inspires me so much to paint and doodle, and to encourage my children to do the same. Sending them outside to explore, and come back with something they want to draw into their journals. Or just finding a good video online to follow, is perfect.
  • Homemade play dough- I love making homemade play dough because I don’t feel bad when it gets dirty or “ruined.” Plus it is a lot of fun to add in leaves, grasses, and flowers such as lavender. Spring is the perfect time to do this.
  • Plant a garden– this is pretty obvious… but really! Get outside and plant a garden with the kids. Or just do some pots inside, that you can transfer to the patio later. On our farm we look the most forward to 2 things: baby animals being born, and the garden!
  • Write Poetry– there is never as much inspiration for writing poetry as in spring! Kids typically love spring and will enjoy writing all about it
  • Study rainbows- read books about them, make rainbows from fun items like beads or cereal, paint rainbows, and read about God’s rainbow
  • Fly a kite at home or in the park/an open field
  • Play baseball as a family– this is super fun if you have. large enough family for everyone to get involved. one of my favorite memories is running the bases, while pregnant with our last baby (#5), after hitting the ball out back. We love playing baseball as a family.
  • Get outside for a sunrise together
  • Stay up late for a sunset together
  • Hit the farmer’s market- this is so fun, and if kids earn an allowance, let them help purchase some produce for the family themselves. Or let them pick out their favorite produce to buy, and share
  • Hunt 4 leaf clovers
  • Get a flower press like this one, and use it for spring flowers

There are so many amazing ways to enjoy God’s creation, and combine life with homeschool. What’s your families favorite thing to do during the spring?

Disclaimer: Some links on this blog are affiliate links; when you use those links you help support my family, at no additional cost to you.  Thank you!

Zondervan NIrV Adventure Bible for Early Readers

Disclosure: I received this complimentary product through the Homeschool Review Crew


Zondervan‘s NIrV Adventure Bible for Early Readers is one of the very best beginner Bibles for children who are of reading age. We have use various versions of their Adventure Bible over the years. My children usually get this as their first “real” Bible around 7 years old, or when they really start to show me they’re old enough for the responsibility.

This is a beautiful, full color, hardback Bible made just for beginner readers who are ready to transition from read-to-me story Bibles, to a full text Bible. The NIrV translation is also going to work well for struggling readers, and those that do not speak English as their first language. It is going to be loved and treasured, I know our kids have all loved theirs. It makes a great gift, too!

NIrV Adventure Bible for Beginner Readers

What It Is

The NIrV Adventure Bible for Early Readers is a step up from story Bibles, and one step closer to reading the NIV version of scripture. (Of course later parent’s can have their children transition from NIrV to whatever translation they prefer.)

Because this Bible is the NIrV translation, it is written at a third grade reading level, using short sentences and easy to understand language. This helps early readers understand God’s Word sooner, one their own, without the struggle of words and comprehension they’re not yet ready for. It is a great choice for readers ages 6-10, or anyone who is considered a “beginning reader” and beyond.

The NIrV Adventure Bible for Early Readers offers:

  • Complete text of the Bible in NIrV translation
  • Full color text and illustrations (which my kids *love*)
  • Articles and illustrations describing life in Bible times, to help children make connections from their world, to Biblical times
  • Words to Treasure, which highlights great Bible verses to memorize (My oldest really loved this about her Bible)
  • Interesting facts under Did You Know sections
  • People of the Bible offering articles about people from God’s story
  • Live It! sections offer ways to apply Biblical truths in everyday life
  • Book introductions help explain useful information about the book, to help the reader’s comprehension
  • A dictionary/concordance
  • A color map section for locating places in the Bible. (This is also great for homeschool Bible activities)
  • 9 point font-not too small for readers, but small enough for a Bible to is easy to carry around

NIrV Adventure Bible for Beginner Readers

While the features of The NIrV Adventure Bible are fabulous, I think the translation is pretty special. I love that it grows with your child, their maturity, and their understanding of The Word. This time my youngest daughter (almost 6) has enjoyed exploring a real Bible, and it definitely draws her in because of the language. It’s not a simple, choppy reader, but it’s not as complex as an adult translation like NIV, or ESV. Its developmentally appropriate language, vocabulary, and cadence make this Bible accurate, and fun to read. This is important for early readers, or even more seasoned readers.

Genesis-NIrV Adventure Bible for Beginner Readers

I think this translation is not only more simple to understand, but because it is so clear for beginner readers, it makes that relationship with God seem more tangible. It can be intimidating as a child to not understand what you are reading. I love that this makes comprehension easier for all level of readers. This is going to be a wonderful addition to any homeschool, too! Scripture is a perfect way to do copywork for learning grammar, spelling, and vocabulary!

Connect With Zandervan

NIrV Adventure Bible for Beginner Readers

See more reviews for the NIrV Adventure Bible, from the Crew by clicking the banner below:

Read the Latest Kids Bible With Your Children


Disclaimer: Some links on this blog are affiliate links; when you use those links you help support my family, at no additional cost to you.  Thank you!

YWAM Christian Heroes Series: Lottie Moon

Disclosure: I received this complimentary product through the Homeschool Review Crew

YWAM Publishing

Our family enjoys the Christian Heroes Then and Now series from YWAM Publishing. If you haven’t heard of this series, it is a series of chapter books focusing on the biographical life story of young men and women who have answered the call God laid on their life. These Christian biographies for kids and families are absolutely wonderful! We’ve read a few different ones, this time my 5th grader enjoyed Lottie Moon: Giving Her All for China. Many of these stories are of Christian missionaries, others are written about famous Christians like C.S. Lewis, and their walk with the Lord.

YWAM Publishing Lottie Moon- Christian Heroes Missionary Stories

About Lottie Moon: Giving Her All for China

This 208 page, paperback book has a beautiful, thick cover with binding that isn’t going to fall a part after a few reads (😅 good thing with 5 kids …). The pages in the YWAM book are great for highlighting with a colored pencil. I love that the cover gives us something to explore in the book about the person, and the culture they lived in.

I would say Lottie Moon: Giving Her All for China is appropriate for ages 10+ to read on their own, and probably for 8+ as a read aloud.

My daughter says

“At first Lottie Moon didn’t like the idea of being a missionary, even though she lived in a Christian environment. She grows up, and feels led by the Lord to declare she is a Christian; then she starts a school for girls. Her little sister, Eddie, goes to be a missionary in China. Then she goes to China to be with her sister, and become a missionary. I don’t want to tell you the rest, because it will spoil it.”

Isn’t it funny how the Lord works in our lives, how He allows experiences that mold and shape our views, then He gives us a new perspective? A perspective with a renewed heart. I would say the same is true for Lottie Moon, the wealthy young girl who thought all Christians were a bunch of gossiping, bitter churchgoers. She was a well educated Southern woman, who was called by God to do even more in the way of missionary work. She followed that calling, and because of her many people heard The Good News. As always, blessings flowed from trusting the Lord, and living according to His plan.

What do I love about this series of books?

I love that everyday kids and families get to hear the amazing way God worked in everyday people’s lives to glorify Him, to change their lives, and bless others in the process. I love that real life is intertwined with Biblical truth, as it should be. I love that children can see God’s amazing work happening in places where things are harder, less comfortable, and appear to be falling apart.

YWAM publishing also offers unit studies for their Christian Heroes Then and Now series. You can find the unit studies on their website. The unit studies can be used for personal study time by the student, filled in/answered as a family discussion style, or used as assessment if needed. They include an overview for how to use in the classroom//homeschool setting, Sunday school classes/small group, and an overview guide of what’s included in the unit studies. You will find a list of all the books in the Christian Heroes Then and Now series, and what they focus on. This is going to help parents and teachers incorporate each book into whatever their family is studying at the time.

Right now we are in year 1 of American History, but after year 2 we will be in Eastern studies. This guide is going to be so helpful for planning read aloud and readers for my children! For a complete list of what is included in the unit studies, visit the website and check out the description of guides you are looking for.

YWAM Publishing Study Guides

The Christian Heroes: Then & Now Unit Study Curriculum Guides cover:
  • Student Explorations – essay writing, creative writing, hands-on projects, audio/visual projects, arts/crafts
  • Social Studies – reproducible maps, geography, terms/vocabulary, journey tracking, critical thinking
  • Bible Study – scripture memorization, devotional application, spiritual concepts
  • Community Links – meaningful field trips, guest speakers, service projects
  • Related Themes to Explore – missions, current events, life skills, math, government, science
  • Bibliography or Related Resources – books, movies, documentaries, magazine articles, websites
  • Culminating Event – project displays, cultural food, music, oral presentations

This resources is invaluable for a homeschool or a classroom setting. Definitely check them out!

Connect with YWAM Publishing


Read more reviews for the Christian Heroes: Then & Now series from YWAM by clicking the banner below:


Disclaimer: Some links on this blog are affiliate links; when you use those links you help support my family, at no additional cost to you.  Thank you! Homeschool Membership {self paced, online learning}

Disclosure: I received this complimentary product through the Homeschool Review Crew

This week I get to share with you all about the Ultimate Membership from a division of The Old Schoolhouse®. This is an online membership full of resources for parents, students, and online courses galore! Homeschool families will find online classes for kindergarten through 12th grade, including (but not limited to) history, science, math, Bible, language arts, and tons of electives. So many online electives, yall! Membership also includes access to hundreds of streaming resources, World Book, and more.

It would be impossible for me to hit all of the amazing benefits of this membership, but I will certainly do my best to highlight what I think will be most appealing to my readers. Welcome

What is Included with the Ultimate Membership from

The Ultimate Membership is going to be any homeschoolers best friend. This online subscription is one price for the entire family, and gives you access to courses in every subject, every grade level, for every student in your home. You will find there are no textbooks to buy, hundreds of courses that are self paced, easy lesson plans to follow, and wonderful parent support!

There is an entire page worth of classes, just for parents; things like Building Faithful Kids, Finally Conquer Fractions, and Growing in Homeschool Confidence caught my eye, but the list is extensive. There is even a Joy in the Morning Christian Motherhood course.

And did I mention resources? Aside from printables, planning pages, organization, charts, and monthly menus you will find over 400 streaming resources. Some videos are included in the courses, but with the Ultimate Membership you also receive access to:

  • Drive Thru History
  • Vision Video
  • Discovery House
  • Boat Angel
  • City on a Hill Productions
  • RightNow Media
  • and more!

You may have heard of the popular Right Now Media.  There are shows and movies for adults, families, and specifically for kids.  Seeds Family Worship, The Pilgrim’s Progress, and The Torch Lighters series are some of our favorites.

The website is easy to navigate and laid out in an organized fashion that makes it simple to get where you need to go. Classes offered cover all subjects from kindergarten to 12th grade, including core subjects, arts, and electives. I can’t possibly list all the individual classes offered, but you can check them all out here, or browse their website using the: grade tab, subject tab, or school boxes tab. subjects


Hey … speaking of school boxes! offers entire grade packages titled School Boxes for even easier planning and organization. If parents don’t want to pick and choose individual classes for each child, the prepackaged school box is the way to go. This can be especially convenient for planning high school; the 9h-12th grade boxes will contain everything your student needs to graduate with confidence that they have taken all the credits necessary for their homeschool diploma!

There are Prek and parent boxes coming, but in the meantime you will find school boxes for K-12th grades! Simply choose the grade that you need and then select the subjects you want to teach. Lesson plans are based on the Scope and Sequence found on the planning pages. Curriculum guides are provided for each subject and make everything so streamlined and simple. Each day the guide will provide the links needed for class. School boxes take care of the planning that may be overwhelming, or difficult during a season. Preplanned School Boxes


I know you will find is something that your family can benefit from, but just in case it turns out that it isn’t your jam, you can cancel anytime! And I can tell you first hand how great customer service is, so you never have to worry about getting help when you need it.

Coupon code time! Use the coupon code FINISHWELL on the quarterly membership through 3/18 and families can get the quarterly ultimate membership for grades PreK-12th for $45. (You will continue to keep your current price, even if it’s a sale price, as long as you keep your membership active.)

This includes a quarterly print subscription to The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine and Applecore Silver Plan, a record keeping program!

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Click the banner below to read more thoughts from the Crew on a division of The Old Schoolhouse®,:An Affordable Homeschool Online Option for All Grades with


Disclaimer: Some links on this blog are affiliate links; when you use those links you help support my family, at no additional cost to you.  Thank you!

Math Mammoth: Homeschool Math Spotlight

Disclosure: I received this complimentary product through the Homeschool Review Crew
Math Mammoth

We’ve been using Math Mammoth in our homeschool the last several weeks. My 5th grader has been going through the Grade 6 Skills Review Book, and my 7 year old has been working on the 2nd grade Light Blue Series (also called Math Mammoth Complete Curriculum). We received the digital sets for review, but you can also purchase CDs, and physical copies. There are some pros to the Digital version- one being that you can print as many copies as you need for all your kids. But what is also cool, the PDFs can be filled out using a computer, phone, or tablet. You can find instructions for how to do that on Math Mammoth’a website.


Math Mammoth

About Math Mammoth

Maria Miller is a math teacher and homeschool mom; she created Math Mammoth out of the desire to help homeschool moms teach the why. This is a program specifically designed for homeschoolers, by a homeschool mom and math teacher by degree- Sounds pretty awesome to me!

Math Mammoth Light Blue Series is a full math curriculum program for grades 1-7. It is mastery oriented, which means that students will be mastering one skill before moving on to the next skill. Each chapter focuses on one topic and its related skill sets. Mental math is a big emphasis in this program, along with number sense.

Number sense is so important- you know, it’s that thing that most of us were never taught, because we were learning skills before we really understood what they were for. Raise your hand if you had no idea the tens place was actually just a place for groups of 10 ones, until you were teaching your first born math in kindergarten?


Just me? Okay then …

The Skills Review books are just that- they cover the review of skills learned in the curriculum. They are spiral oriented, which means they cover lots of concepts at once.

These books are broken down into chapters, and those chapters correlate with that grade level’s curriculum. It can be used right along side the curriculum for added review and practice. If you’re trying to catch up a child who is moving from public school to homeschool, or maybe they need some enrichment over the summer or extra practice to keep skills fresh, this is probably a great book for that purpose.

foresee using this with my son to do some review on 4th grade math before hitting 5th grade next month.

Math Mammoth Grade 2 Light Blue Curriculum

What We Thought

Well, let me first tell you how much the Light Blue Series showed me that I needed to focus on number sense more with my 7 year old. This isn’t something that comes naturally to all children; sometimes a 5 year old may have better number sense than their older siblings… (hmm) But there are things we can do to build number sense for those that need extra practice, and Math Mammoth lays a good foundation for that!

I really liked that each lesson she went through in the 2nd grade curriculum had my daughter thinking about numbers with visuals. There is a great emphasis on visual models and this is oh. so. helpful! It helps the child understand why they’re doing what they’re doing. Which makes remembering how to get the answer much easier. It also makes self checking easier, because they understand the actual process, not just a set of procedures.

Math Mammoth Grade 2 Light Blue Curriculum

Grade 2 Math

I also love that the entire curriculum is written to the student; there is no script, or separate teacher’s manual. You can find notes for the teacher  at the beginning of each chapter, but the chapters can be completed 💯 independently by your child, if so you choose. The included online videos of Maria teaching are great, and simple to understand. If your child needs someone to show them vs reading instructions, then the videos are going to be your friend! (Or you can show them).

The Skills Review book was wonderful! My 5th grader is a wonderful independent learner. She enjoys figuring things out for herself and comes to me only when she needs help. The review of 6th grade (which lined up with the beginning of her current 5th grade curriculum) really gave her a different perspective for doing math. I like that she is learning a deeper context to her math skills. We will continue with the Skills Review books for her as needed.

Overall, I am so glad we finally tried Math Mammoth; it is going to be great to incorporate it into our homeschool.  I love the foundation it lays for number sense and conceptual math skills for my youngers, and it’s especially going to beneficial as math concepts become more difficult for my olders. The kids enjoyed it, I think they liked the change and the way the math was explained.

If you’ve been hesitant about trying Math Mammoth, check out their samples online, the free videos and other great resources shared on the website. I didn’t know that treasure trove was there before this review, and I wish I had!

Math Mammoth

Connect with Math Mammoth


You can read more reviews from the Crew and see other grade level details by clicking on the banner below!Tackle Math Curriculum with Math Mammoth

Disclaimer: Some links on this blog are affiliate links; when you use those links you help support my family, at no additional cost to you.  Thank you!

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