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Trivia Troll University App Review

The last year of our homeschool lives have been exhausting. With the pandemic, we’ve had to give up our normal routines of gymnastics, swimming lessons, piano lessons and more. With that, my husband and I have tried to give our kids fun things to do at home. This includes many different games and outside activities that are both fun and educational. Last week we had the opportunity to use Trivia Troll University and I can’t wait to share my Trivia Troll University review with you!

First of all, Trivia Troll University is fun and educational for the entire family. To be honest, we’ve only ever found a few apps that have been fun and educational for all of us at the same time. Most apps have a particular age level it is best suited for and if you are above or below that, it doesn’t keep my kids engaged. This app is different. Trivia Troll University is a trivia app that consists of ten subjects. Each subject consists of ten jigsaw puzzles. Your challenge is to “earn” the pieces that make up each puzzle by answering trivia questions. Once you’ve earned all of the pieces of a puzzle, you will have the opportunity to assemble the puzzle and identify what the picture is. The puzzles are representative of the current subject. For example, one of the puzzles for the “Geography” subject is a picture of Big Ben.

The trivia questions are drawn from a wide variety of categories and range from easy to difficult, so you can learn while you play. You can use this app individually or as a family. As I stated above, this app was fun for the entire family so we chose to use the app first as a family as part of family game night and then we also used it as a fun break from our regular studies throughout the week. It was a great way to have fun together throughout the day or when we needed a break from regular studies.


You can download the app here: http://www.mylanderpages.com/appsadazy/Trivia-Troll-U


The Trivia Troll University app is both educational and extremely fun. You can choose from subjects such as American History, Geography, Science & Math, Animals & Nature, World History, Random Fact or Fiction, Bible, Fine Arts, Technology, and Politics & Civics. We enjoyed every single one of the subjects.

Our family started with American History as we just finished learning about World War II in our homeschooling. In the American History section, we had fantastic questions such as:

My kids were correct in their answers most of the time, which I felt great about, but even though they got the answer right, I very much appreciated the extra context around their correct answer. I got the feeling that for a few of the questions they guessed the right answer accidentally, but because the app gave my kids more context and history about why they were correct in their answer, I felt that they were actually learning something. As a bonus, I would quiz them throughout the week on questions we had in the app — so when we were driving to the grocery store a few days ago, I asked my kids about The Gettysburg Address and they were able to answer me correctly, succinctly, and accurately. It was such a fun way to test my kids and their knowledge!

In the app, if you get the wrong answer, it also tells you why it was incorrect and gives you the correct answer. As seen to the right. I appreciated this a lot because some apps we have used in the past will tell you that the answer you provided is wrong, but it won’t give you much context as to why or it will just provide you with the correct answer and no explanation or learning opportunity provided. I really thought this app was special because of the answers and the paragraph(s) provided that helped my kids actually learn when they answered incorrectly.

You can change subjects at any time and repeat subjects. When you repeat a subject the questions also repeat, so you can see if you learned anything the last time around! You can also create and join groups for some friendly competition with other trivia trolls. For example, you might create a private group for your homeschool support group.

The best part is that the cost is just $1.99 and provides many hours of family fun and educational value for both kids and adults. As a family who likes to be competitive with each other, this was a way for us to be together, learn, have fun and laugh. Something sorely needed this year as a family.


You can download the app here: http://www.mylanderpages.com/appsadazy/Trivia-Troll-U


If you and your family are in need of something educational and fun, I cannot recommend this app enough. The developers really put a lot of thought and care into creating this and making it fun for everyone while being extremely educational. Why not download the app and try trivia games in the middle of the day while taking a break from your harder curriculum lessons? I guarantee you it will surely brighten the day for your kids, like it did with mine! It’s a fun way to break up the monotony of their every day academics and give them a break. Plus, family game nights could certainly benefit from the challenging and fun competition that this trivia inspires! One of trivia’s primary benefits is that it enables you to learn a surprising amount about a wide variety of subjects. It’s a great way to teach homeschoolers new subject or get them interested in subjects you have yet to cover in your homeschooling.

If your family is looking to test their knowledge or learn something new, consider this fantastic trivia game. Fun and learning don’t have to be mutually exclusive concepts; get the best of both worlds with this fantastic trivia app! We highly recommend Trivia Troll University for any family, whether you’re homeschooling your kids or not!


DOWNLOAD NOW AND SEE HOW SMART YOU REALLY ARE!

If you do download it (and why wouldn’t you!), please consider giving the developer a boost by posting a review to the app store.

http://www.mylanderpages.com/appsadazy/Trivia-Troll-U

Beestar Review – Math, Reading, and English Language Arts

My family had the opportunity to do a Beestar Review over the last few weeks and I can’t wait to tell you all about it!

Beestar is an innovative online math and reading curriculum provider for kids! BeeStar is a FREE online course and lasts an entire semester, or all year long, depending on how often you want to use it. It’s a fantastic way to test your child’s knowledge. There are two weekly exercises that your child completes. Students will receive an immediate score upon completion. Although parts of the site are free, there are other areas that collect a $20-$30 fee for programs such as ELA and Gifted/Talented math.

For any homeschool parent looking for fantastic curriculum-based, online exercises for their children, I highly recommend Beestar. Here’s why:

  • This is a supplementary program (2 exercises/about 20 minutes per week). I find that my kids do well with lots of supplemental programs to engage their learning when I am not teaching them individually.  Beestar is fantastic because it provides an opportunity for practice and allows your children to improve on subject knowledge. I wouldn’t suggest using this as your core curriculum because it’s more of a practice test for your kids, but it’s a great way for your kids to master the skills you are teaching them with their core curriculum. Our family really liked the program a lot for this very reason. You can see samples of exercises here. And guess what?  The Beestar math program is absolutely FREE!  There is a small cost for the other subjects – $20-$30 per semester/per course – a very reasonable price in my opinion.

Here are some of the reasons I love Beestar for our homeschooling journey:

  • The exercises are posted on the student’s home page on Sunday and due at midnight of the next Saturday (CST). The student can work on the exercises any time during the week. Most exercises follow the standard test format with multiple-choice problems. The exercises start with basic content and as time goes by, the exercises get a little more difficult. Each exercise usually has 10 problems/questions and takes about 10 minutes to complete.
  • After the student finishes an exercise, the work is graded instantly – this includes score, time taken to finish, and a review of the answers. Each question is worth 2 points, so the total score for an exercise is 20 points. I love that I don’t need to grade them and that I get a report of what my child needs more help on. It also provides the answers when your child doesn’t answer correctly, helping to teach them while also testing their knowledge.
  • If a child doesn’t finish his/her exercises by Friday, Beestar sends the parent a friendly reminder. This is so helpful!
  • At the end of every week a report is sent to the parents. It includes the student’s exercise details and statistics. Parents can see the areas needing improvement, and can help their child as necessary. This is incredibly helpful and one of the main reasons I love this program. It helps me understand where I need to spend more time on teaching each week. For example, my daughter was having trouble with some of the 8th grade math questions but was a master in her reading program. So, we spent more time on math the following week and we saw a significant improvement in just one week! It is SO IMPORTANT to know where to focus your time as a homeschooling parent.
  • At the end of the week, weekly honor rolls are released for all grades and subjects. Students who answer 80% of questions correctly in a week earn an honor roll ribbon. These students’ placements are determined by the total amount of time they use in the exercises. Students can vividly see their achievement and share their success with parents. Since homeschooling is individualized, I love this aspect of the program because my kids are somewhat competitive (they get that from my husband) and so it really motivates them to do the work and earn their Honor Roll Ribbons!
  • Beestar has a National Competition. The Beestar National Competition (BNC) is designed to bring students nation wide together to solve interesting problems and compete with one another. The problems in BNC are designed to both consolidate fundamental knowledge and inspire students’ desire to explore. By exposing them to more interesting and mind-stretching topics, the competition problems challenge students to wonder and to research. For more info about the BNC, click here.

Let’s dive into the program a little more.

You can use Beestar for printing worksheets to help with supplementing your homeschool math, ELA or Science program. I love having worksheets on hand when we have a busy week because it helps me stay sane. Here are some examples of the math worksheets we used this week. I thought the layout was great and my kids enjoyed working on them.

 

Here are some examples of the exercises my kids did this week as well, through the Beestar program.

The program schedules for Beestar can be found below as well. This is helpful if you want to start at the beginning of each semester so that your student can participate in each week.

 

Beestar Homeschool Program – Conclusion.

I will continue using Beestar as a fantastic supplemental homeschool program for our family. Here are a few reasons I want to continue using Beestar in our homeschooling:

  • It’s a good supplemental program – you can never have too many options/resources for this in my experience. I like the mastery aspect of this program.
  • Beestar work is completed quickly – short time spans, instant results.
  • The weekly outline/program topics page provides a great overview for the parent – especially if you have multiple kids.
  • The student homepage is set up very nicely – your student can access weekly exercises and review exercise results and statistics, honor roll ribbons and score bar charts, and preview future exercise topics.
  • The Parent Home Page lets you check on each of your students – see times spent on exercises, review the exercises, and review stats and see the honor roll/bar chart data.
  • As mentioned, Beestar provides motivational recognitions every week. Accuracy medals and speed trophies – everyone likes being recognized…and it’s something to strive for.
  • Also mentioned previously – the Beestar National Competition (BNC) is open to all students – and held during the Fall and Spring semesters.
  • Free printable math worksheets – Want to practice more after Beestar’s weekly exercises? The website offers FREE printable math worksheets! Provided as a complimentary addition, the printable worksheets complement Beestar’s online programs and are a FANTASTIC resource for any homeschooling parent. It’s a struggle to find quality printables. They seem to be everywhere (printables) but most aren’t very good quality, and I appreciate the quality that Beestar provides!
  • I appreciate the recommended math books by grade level. A great way to make math fun!
  • There’s a Gifted and Talented (GT) program.
  • The site offers referral credit towards fee-based programswhen you have 2 or more successful referrals, you can sign up for one fee-based program.

Interested in Beestar? You can learn more about Beestar here: www.Beestar.org

Did you like the Beestar Math and Reading Review? You can view more of our reviews here: https://www.howtohomeschool.net/curriculum-reviews

Study.com Homeschool Review

Looking for a one-stop homeschool curriculum option that promotes independent learning and requires little preparation from a busy parent? Study.com, with their online homeschool curriculum can help! Keep reading to see how Jessica, a homeschool mom of 4, loved working on the Study.com review and how much she loves this learning platform for her kids!

Hi, I’m Jessica. A Homeschool mom of 4 with over 16 years of homeschooling under my belt. I was really excited when I had the opportunity to do a Study.com review because we’ve used the platform before and I wanted to incorporate it into our homeschooling routine as more of a core study vs supplemental. To give some background, Study.com is a great all-in-one learning platform. With expert-designed, self-guided homeschool courses for grades 3-12, each family can adapt the resources to meet their needs. Depending on the plan your family signs up for, you can also have the capability of building and assigning custom courses for your kids, as well as monitoring each kid’s progress individually. This way, each student can learn at their own pace. 

What’s especially nice about the courses on Study.com is the fact that they’re video based, but also include lesson transcripts, quizzes, and other learning components. That makes it a great fit, regardless of your child’s learning style.

You’re reading the Study.com review that Homeschool Mom of 16 years, Jessica, wrote. Have questions about this Study.com review? Email her directly at Jessica@HowToHomeschool.net.

Study.com Review:

Here are a few reasons we love Study.com for homeschooling.

Study.com Review: Reason # 1Study.com lessons are designed to address multiple learning styles.

Many lessons are based around short, engaging, animated videos. Both auditory and visual learners benefit by both hearing and seeing the lessons.

In addition to the video, a transcript of the lesson is written out below the video. Students can print it out and highlight important facts. For kinesthetic learners, this physical interaction with the text can be a big plus.

Study.com Review: Reason # 2The program helps to develop independent learners.

Besides automatic grading that will help both you and your students keep track of their progress, students can set goals for when they will start and finish courses. The ability to schedule not just what courses they take, but their actual study time teaches them valuable time management skills.

Video explanations for wrong answers help them truly learn the material, instead of just moving on without really understanding it.

And your students will have access to expert instructors 24 hours a day, 7 days a week so they always have someone to answer their questions. A big part of being an independent learner is knowing when you need to seek help! It also helps me as a parent because with 4 kids, it’s hard to provide 1-1 attention and help at all times during the day.

Study.com Review: Reason # 3There is something for (almost) everyone in the family. 

Younger kids (and older ones too!) will enjoy the animated videos. These videos help kids see the concepts they are learning about, as well as hear how the subject’s vocabulary is pronounced.

Older students can take AP classes or earn college credit in multiple ways. They can prepare for taking CLEP tests while still in high school, and through the College Accelerator option, they can actually earn college credit.

Study.com Review: Reason # 4Students can learn anywhere

With Study.com‘s mobile app, you know you’ll have access from almost anywhere. One of the great things about homeschooling is that you aren’t tied to learning from one specific place or time of the year.

So whether you enjoy road schooling or simply need to be away from home for an extended period of time, you can know that you can continue your studies.

Study.com Review: Reason # 5 —  You Can Create Your Own Online Homeschool Curriculum

While it’s pretty incredible that Study.com has more than 4,000 video courses available, it’s also possible that you’ll find yourself needing to create your own course. What happens then?

I created a custom course by adding chapters or topics together. You can quickly create a custom course adding chapters (or topic names), using the search function to find prepared lessons to cover the topics, and saving the lessons to your Custom Course. Then you can share this with your student.

Study.com Review: Reason # 6 — You can tailor it to fit your family’s specific needs.

Whether you want to use the courses as the main curriculum in your home or as a starting point for other types of lessons, Study.com gives you the flexibility. Because there are so many resources on Study.com, it means you can choose how to use it in whatever way works best for your students.

Speaking of that (#6), here’s how Study.com could work in your home. It’s how we used the platform in our home during our Study.com review period:

Meet Jacob. He’s a homeschooled eleventh grader using Study.com for his core academic classes and electives and even to earn college credit! To cover his core academic requirements, he’s taking 11th grade English, Biology, Geometry and World History.

With Study.com‘s flexible learning format, Jacob and his parents can decide how many hours a day to devote to homeschool and when to study. He can also choose to take one course at a time or multiple at once.

Jacob sets up his study schedule on Study.com so that he can map out how long each class will take to complete.

Jacob loves math, so he starts each day with his Geometry course. He enjoys the 5 minute animated video lessons and appreciates the simple, clear explanations. After each lesson, he completes the practice quiz to check what he’s learned and reinforce his mastery. When Jacob gets stuck, he sends questions to their expert instructors for extra help. After each learning session, he reviews what he’s learned with his parent.

Jacob studies every day and tracks his course progress on his dashboard. He can see what concepts he has mastered and what he still needs to learn.

With Study.com, Jacob takes charge of his own learning while allowing his parent to track his progress. He’s able to customize his learning experience while still satisfying his state’s curricular requirements. The engaging video format and study tools make it easy to focus and stay on track.

Jacob is also taking two electives this year: government and health. He wants to get ahead on college, so he decides to upgrade to Study.com‘s College Accelerator plan, which will allow him to take the courses required for his homeschool curriculum while also earning transferable college credit. He starts with his government course. He watches the video lessons on his computer and prepares for his final exam by taking practice exams and prepping with Study.com flashcards. These courses are just like AP courses except that Jacob can take his final exam and earn credit at any time and from home. Jacob completes his courses in just 3 months. By the end of the school year, he’s on track to graduate high school and already has 6 credits he can transfer to his college.

With Study.com, Jacob and his parents don’t have to hunt down curriculum solutions from multiple providers. Everything he needs is in one place, at Study.com. Plus, Study.com is easy to pair with other learning resources that you may be using. It’s a great supplemental resource for textbooks, other websites, and hands-on learning.

As a reminder, Study.com is an entirely online, portable curriculum that can be accessed from a desktop or via a mobile app.

You’re reading the Study.com review that Homeschool Mom of 16 years, Jessica, wrote. Have questions about this Study.com review? Email her directly at Jessica@HowToHomeschool.net.

For homeschoolers, the premium plan makes the most sense since it includes access to all courses and online quizzes, and it tracks student progress, a feature not included in the basic plan. In addition, homeschool subscribers have the option of creating accounts for a family at no extra cost, with a free parent account that can be linked to paid student accounts. This makes it easy for parents to plan and monitor progress. The Homeschool Edition is $59.99/month for the family plsn. If you sign up for a full year, you’ll receive 45% off! Further, if you have a high school student, and want to have them work towards College credit, they can sign up for the College Accelerator plan for $199/mo. Your child can earn College Credits before they even start their College years.

You’re reading the Study.com review that Homeschool Mom of 16 years, Jessica, wrote. Have questions about this Study.com review? Email her directly at Jessica@HowToHomeschool.net.

If you have a high school student, I also really love the option to research schools based on my child’s interests. Study.com has a very comprehensive section of their website that highlights schools based on what your student may want to study.

In short, our family has loved Study.com for all of the reasons I mentioned above. I hope this Study.com review has helped you better understand what capabilities you can utilize in your homeschooling. It’s a fantastic option for parents new to homeschooling, or parents with multiple children in the home. It’s also perfect for parents that want to know how their child is progressing, since it’s all automated through the Study.com platform.

Have any questions about this Study.com review? Reach out to me directly and I would be happy to answer any questions you have about the platform and what we learned! My direct email is Jessica@HowToHomeschool.net.

Vocabulary Quest Review

I’m always looking for fun ways to learn. I notice that my kids enjoy the process more, and retain the information better when they’re having fun. My kids love all types of games — board games, card games, and especially video games (although we limit video games to mostly educational ones around here). If your kids are anything like mine, then you’re going to want to continue reading, because I’m thrilled to share with you how excited I am about a program called Vocabulary Quest — a fantastic vocabulary builder for homeschoolers.

Vocabulary Quest is a great vocabulary builder and software program for homeschoolers of all shapes and sizes. The word lists it contains are both intermediate and advanced so I would recommend it for middle or high school students, and maybe even advanced upper elementary. I also think this game would be a great way for adults to keep their brains sharp and expand their own vocabulary. Before I give my kids any new program to use, I try it out myself, and I found myself not wanting to stop playing! The program is also a great way to cover the vocabulary needed to prepare for ACT and SAT test, so if you’ve got a student who is getting ready for those College entrance tests (one of mine is!), this would be a great, fun way to practice.

My kids are ages 9, 11, 14 & 16. They all tried Vocabulary Quest as a vocabulary builder and all of them liked it a lot. My 14 year old especially. I almost couldn’t get him to stop. They all asked to play multiple times a week, which I value in a homeschool program. That way I’m not trying to force them to learn, they are interested in learning themselves. Since my husband was an English major, we’ve always taught our kids vocabulary and we always try to learn new words every week. Strangers sometimes stop me and tell me how eloquently my children speak for their age. My husband and I both take pride in this. So, giving us another way to incorporate new words into their weekly routine is a blessing for us.

The thing I love most about Vocabulary Quest is that it is a highly interactive learning software that is a fantastic vocabulary builder. There are fun visuals and a highly adaptive interface that fuels an interactive learning process. Further, it offers students a variety of ways in which to practice and hone skills – crosswords, matching games, multiple choice, flash cards, short tests, and the way my kids loved to play most, by pitting themselves against colorful monsters summoned by mages. Word recognition and comprehension are essential to winning these timed battles. Along the way, players join guilds, acquire special powers, unlock levels, access new armor to wear and more! There are 1200 advanced vocabulary words in all, organized into theme-based sublists that can be arranged in a myriad of ways so that it’s always fresh and fun!

Here’s how the game works:

As a vocabulary builder, the vocabulary words are practiced in groups of five. There are four basic mini-games you can play to learn the words. These mini-games are classic ways that vocabulary is normally studied; multiple choice, crossword, matching, and fill-in-the-blank. As you work through the games the program will create a list of the words the student misses and add them to the section labeled ‘Recommended to Study’.

For additional practice your student can use the flashcards, quick test, and spelling activities.

The games can be replayed as many times as needed to hit mastery. In the final game your child will be conquering an enemy. Their chance of conquering the enemy is based on the speed and accuracy of the answers. They will see a definition on the screen and need to type the correct word, spelled perfectly (and quickly).

After you answer the questions, the battle between your character and the enemy will take place automatically, and you will win or lose, depending on how well you answered the questions. You have to win this round before the next five words are unlocked.

As you play through the game you unlock better armor and weapons, which you can equip in the armory.

The kids had a ton of fun battling the Mages and would run into the kitchen and tell me all about the words they learned while playing. It was a way for us to talk about different words and meanings each day. The kids knew some of the words already, but didn’t know a lot of them, and throughout the weeks we used the program (we’re still using it), I would hear them incorporate words into their everyday lives. That was by far the neatest outcome of using this program. I love seeing my kids progress in real life — not just in the classroom.

Some things to know about using Vocabulary Quest in your Homeschool…

  • It is designed to be supplemental — it is not a curriculum, which is a huge perk for me and many homeschooling parents. It means you can pick it up when you need to, and use it as a supplement to your typical homeschooling routine. It also makes it feel more fun — as if it isn’t really school work.
  • It is designed to teach a large and advanced vocabulary and that means you don’t need to buy a bunch of levels or a new vocabulary program each year!
  • Kids can work independently. I can’t stress how important this is — especially if you are ho meschooling multiple age groups. Truly, I love independent learning because it not only helps me as a homeschooling mom, but it teaches my kids how to think for themselves and stay busy. A valuable skill for any child.
  • It is not an app! I love that this isn’t on a phone or tablet. They kids have to use the computer, which is a welcome change to their everyday lives. It’s still a computer game, but at least it’s on a bigger screen!
  • I suggest limiting their time to 30 minutes a day or less. It’s a game, but it’s also school work, and while I love fun learning opportunities, I also value time away from the computer. 30 minutes a day is plenty and will give you and your kids a lifetime of learning with this program with that daily time limit.

Vocabulary Quest is available either as a download or as a physical CD and is intended for use on a computer with either Windows 7, 8 or 10 operating system (32 and 64 bits). Vocabulary Quest is also a 2020 Tillywig Award Winner!

You can learn more about Vocabulary Quest and how to purchase the program from their website: https://vocabularyquest.com/

SURVEY OF THE BIBLE Streaming Service & Workbooks

The Bible is the one of the most revered, respected and celebrated books of all time. Since the first published book (a Bible, of course!) rolled off the Gutenberg press over five hundred years ago, it has been a perpetual bestseller, far surpassing sales of any other volume in human history.

Some parts of the Bible are easy to understand yet many are not. With its lengthy genealogies, Levitical laws, and apocalyptic visions, even for sincere readers reading with understanding can be a monumental task. Obviously, to navigate these challenging and potentially treacherous waters, you need a trustworthy and experienced guide — someone who knows both the world of the text and the ways of God in human history.

That is why Bruce Wilkinson’s newest course Survey of the Bible was created – to help people understand the big picture of God’s Word.

When we had the opportunity to review the Survey of the Bible product, we were thrilled. To be honest, I’ve been struggling to read and teach the Bible to my children lately. Not that I don’t want to, but I was feeling overwhelmed and didn’t quite know how to incorporate it into our homeschooling efforts. Within 15 minutes of starting the streaming videos and looking at the workbooks, I knew this was the answer to my prayers.

Let me start off with the streaming videos. They very easily help you see the big picture. The structure of the Bible is broken down so you can better understand and plan your teachings. Utilizing memory pegs, animation and creative staging, difficult content is made mind-easy and memorization become effortless.

With 66 books in the Bible (Old Testament – 39, New Testament 27), this course really brings everything to life and helps you better understand.

You can Stream this course for FREE by going to: https://www.brucewilkinsoncourses.org/collections/dvds/products/survey_preorder?variant=36512439809 and using the code BSHSS at checkout to get the Streaming version for free!

 

You can fill in your workbook as you take the course, or you can review later on (which is what I preferred to do. My kids liked filling in the blanks as they went — this made it easier for them to remember — for me, I liked the review part after I had watched the course.

You can also get 20% off your workbook! Use code BSHSW at checkout! **Must purchase this separately because only one coupon code can be used at a time.

There are a total of 8 sessions — all around 30 minutes each — long enough to constitute a lesson, but not too long that you get bored or the information gets too overwhelming. They are bite sized enough for my kids to watch them multiple times, as well. I thought we would go over the course once, like we normally do with online courses, however, we watched these sessions multiple times over the last few weeks. Since there is so much information in the Bible, I thought watching these a few times would really help with our memorization and my kids liked Bruce so much that they actually WANTED to watch these sessions at least twice with me. I can’t even tell you how happy that made my Christian Mom heart. 🙂

In Session 1, Bruce goes over the books of the Old Testament, Session 2 goes over the places of the Old Testament, Session 3 is about the people of the Old Testament, and Session 4 is about the periods of the Old Testament.

The remaining sessions keep the same format, but just for the New Testament. Session 5 goes over the books of the New Testament, Session 6 goes over the places of the New Testament, Session 7 goes over the people of the New Testament, and Session 8 is about the periods of the New Testament.

For example, in Session 2, you learn the most important PLACES of the Old Testament — you don’t learn every place that is mentioned in the Bible, but the most important are highlighted and Bruce goes over each one in enough detail to make it memorable. Including bodies of water, regions/nations & cities. This overview and lesson was incredibly helpful to me and my family. It helped us better understand the scale and what was going on at the time.

In Session 3, Bruce went over the most important people in the Old Testament. For example, I didn’t know there are 31 Zachariahs, 5 Johns and 13 different Josephs. No wonder I had trouble understanding! With over 2,000 people in the Old Testament, Bruce goes over the top 10, which was REALLY helpful, including something about them. My kids absolutely LOVED this session. It was by far their favorite. Bruce really helped us all understand the players/characters in the Bible. The Bible can feel so abstract but knowing about each person, or at least the most important, makes the teachings feel so much more real.

This all repeats for the New Testament — the same format for each session. The really exceptional part of all of this is that not only are these sessions incredibly helpful, but you can also purchase the Workbook (HIGHLY RECOMMEND!). The workbook has colorful photos and cartoons in it to help the kids get excited about learning. I can’t express how important it is to me that my kids are excited and interested in learning and workbooks like this one help them get more excited about the content. Bruce did an exceptional job at the content, layout and review throughout the workbook.

Some other really great things I love about the Survey of the Bible Course:

  • They’ve broken the historical timeline into 20 different periods – 10 in the Old Testament and 10 in the New Testament. These “bite sized” historical periods help to better understand the history and makes it much easier to teach to my kids. They are actually quite interested in the content now, which is something I struggled with for years before this resource.
  • They provide maps (that make sense) so that you can discover where the Garden of Eden was, where Abraham came from, where Jesus walked, Paul was imprisoned and much more. These are absolutely amazing. My kids had so much fun interacting with these and we put them up on the wall of our homeschool room.
  • What I loved most though, was the consistent review throughout the videos and workbooks. It is such a crucial element in making this big-picture tool your own. After just a few sessions, I had such a better knowledge of the history, events and people than I ever had before. Even as an adult, this is the perfect tool to better understand the Bible and the history.

The workbook is an extra cost, but it is filled with colorful charts, illustrations, fill-in-the-blanks and masterful summaries of the stories of both the Old and New Testaments, making it the perfect companion to Bruce Wilkinson’s Survey of the Bible DVD series. As I mentioned above, I HIGHLY RECOMMEND it! My kids learned more with this course and workbook in a few weeks than they’ve learned from their father and I teaching them for the last year. This course and workbook are truly an answer to prayer and I hope that it helps your family as much as it has mine.

REMEMBER: You can Stream this course for FREE by going to: https://www.brucewilkinsoncourses.org/collections/dvds/products/survey_preorder?variant=36512439809 and using the code BSHSS at checkout!
You can also get 20% off your workbook! Use code BSHSW at checkout! **Must make two separate purchases because only one coupon code can be used at a time.

Have any questions about the course and contents? Send me an email! I’m happy to personally respond! Jessica@HowToHomeschool.net.

CLICK BELOW TO WATCH A PREVIEW OF THE COURSE:

Further, there are also a bunch of skill courses if you like the teaching style of Bruce Wilkinson. I’m already looking at other courses by Bruce because I love his style!

Have you taken this course? What did you think about it? I would love to hear from you!

Learn more about the course here: https://www.brucewilkinsoncourses.org/collections/dvds/products/survey_preorder?variant=36512439809

 

 

Zinc Learning Labs Review

Ready to get your kids to love reading? Zinc Learning Labs is passionate about creating a world where all students love to read and have the skills to do so successfully. Their online tools are making this mission a reality.

Zinc Learning Labs is unique in that it was created only for middle and high school aged students. Their content targets their unique reading needs and interests. You can assign your students/children reading, vocabulary sets and close reading exercises or allow free choice. With free choice, kids can pick the content that they’re excited about, which means they’re more likely to put in the effort to complete a challenging task.

Zinc Learning Labs addresses the literacy needs of all middle and high school students, from reluctant readers to high achievers. First, a quick diagnostic will test your student and establish independent reading levels. Then Zinc Learning Labs will teach students close reading strategies and new vocabulary. With these new skills and words, students can then train their reading abilities with a wide selection of leveled, authentic texts. After each reading, students take a short assessment, which generates robust data to help you, as the parent, target instruction and monitor progress.

The great thing about Zinc Learning Labs is that it has three key components: articles with quizzes, vocabulary, and close reading instructions

Their “Articles” are about 90%nonfiction and 10% fiction excerpts and poetry. All texts are authentic because they curate the best texts from around the web. You can filter by interests (ex. sports, technology, science, etc.), by reading level (from 4th grade reading level up to college level), by reading standards, reading skills, and length. You can also search for article sets that complement common novels/plays, like The Great Gatsby and Romeo and Juliet. Each article is accompanied by a short, standards-aligned, self-grading quiz.

My favorite part of their platform is Vocabulary. They have sets by grade level, for test prep (ACT, SAT, AP, etc.), to go with common texts (ex. The Scarlet Letter), and to go with each piece of text on their site. What I really love is that parents can also create their own custom sets quickly and easily. My high schooler is prepping for his SAT and we’ve been using the vocabulary section of their site a lot. I can tell you it works! Interestingly, their vocabulary instruction is unique because they use spaced repetition. Students see each word six times over two months before they consider it mastered. To make sure that students fully understand new words’ meanings, they have them interact with four modes of game play: image, sentence, definition and synonym.

And third, they have close reading experiences. Research shows that adolescents need explicit reading instruction to be able to comprehend complex secondary-school and college level texts. Our instructors go through excerpts of diverse texts line by line, sometimes word by word to teach the key skills for close reading.

If you have a high school student at home, you know how hard it is to find curriculum and resources geared specifically for middle & high school students. It seems like everything is geared towards the lower grades. That’s why I was so excited to review this program and use it with my kids. Finding something like this, tailored to their age range and skill level made a huge difference in our homeschooling.

In addition to what Zinc Learning Labs offers above, they have a placement test that you can give up to three times a year to monitor progress.For some extra motivation, they have points and leaderboards (gamification is so huge with my kids).

Here are a few of the things I love most about this program:

  1. It’s tailored to Middle & High School students but if your child is behind or ahead, their materials cover 3rd grade through College.
  2. The close reading experiences are like mini tutoring sessions and help students how to dissect and comprehend complex texts across levels. Even students on or above grade level can improve using these techniques.
  3. They support Spanish speaking/ ELL students
  4. Individualized reports on each student so that you can understand where they may be struggling or where they are advancing. Such a great tool and I don’t have to grade anything!
  5. One aspect of Zinc I really like is that I can plug virtually any text into the program and create my own vocabulary list to go with the article.
  6. Their test prep links are amazing.
  7. The gamefication of the program works well because students can earn points for growth & it gets them motivated!
  8. With Zinc’s library of diverse texts, I could find a variety of relevant and engaging readings with built in assessments, including both multiple choice questions and writing prompts for my son.
  9. I can easily monitor and assess his progress via their online platform.
  10. My son can choose texts based on length, reading level, genre, or subject. To top if all off, each article comes with a set of vocabulary games to help students learn the vocabulary they will need to understand the text.

If you’re interested in learning more, you can watch a ~2 min. overview video here or sample an excerpt of their interactive close reading lessons here. You can also browse though their authentic texts, which they update every week, here and you can try their vocabulary games here.

Ready to purchase? You can do so at the Home School Buyers Co-op.

Dave Ramsey’s Foundations in Personal Finance – Homeschool High School Edition

I’ve always taught my kids the importance of money. If you have enough and aren’t in debt, you have freedom. Freedom is something homeschoolers value — the freedom to educate our kids the way we believe they should be educated, and the freedom to teach them personal values throughout the time we school them at home. The reason I’ve been so adamant about teaching my kids the importance of money is that I learned the hard way. I got caught up in overspending, wanting something that I didn’t budget for, wanting more for my kids, saying yes to them more than I should have, etc. Many of us fall for this. I know I’m not alone. When my husband and I decided to start focusing on living well, instead of living with “stuff,” everything changed.

I want each of my kids to leave home with the good financial tools so that they can feel free, and truly be free.

From the time they were young, they have all received allowance. For a few years, we didn’t ask for much in return. If they did their chores, they received money for it. Not until a few years ago did we start implementing what we call “smart money.” If they spend their money wisely, they get 10% more on their next allowance. For example, let’s say Sarah gets $20 a week for doing her chores around the house. If she spends that money wisely, next weeks she gets $22/week. If she doesn’t spend it wisely, it goes back to the normal $20/week. This allows her to choose what she wants to do and she gets rewarded for thinking about her decisions.

It may not seem like much, but it started a conversation around money that our household never had before we implemented this. That’s why I was so excited to be able to review Dave Ramsey’s Foundations in Personal Finance – Homeschool High School Edition. My husband and I have wanted to do more with our kids around personal finance and this was just the right curriculum to do it.

My kids started the course over a month ago and I am already seeing a change in their behavior around money. My oldest is talking to me more about student loans, how to get away with not having any, and finding a way to work through College. While he and I have talked about that in the past, it has now become a true focal point in our household. He goes off to college next year and we’ve now had many discussions about budgeting, money management, and how that will fit into his college life.

This course starts out fairly basic, allowing high schoolers who haven’t had anyone teach them about money, to get up to speed. My kids already had a good handle on many of the concepts because we practice them at home, but I don’t want to discount the basics. They are SO important! If I hadn’t taught my kids the basics, we would have spent a lot more time at the beginning of the course. If your kids already have a working knowledge, breeze through it — but don’t skip it. I promise the refresher is worth it. You can even get the first Chapter completely free and you can view their FREE video lesson.

In Unit 1, you get an introduction to Personal Finance, Saving and my personal favorite, Budgeting!

“Becoming wealthy does not happen accidentally. It is a journey that requires intentionality, persistance and discipline. But with all of life’s distractions, how can you stay focused on your money goals? A budget is the perfect solution. It’s simple — just write down a plan for your money and intentionally follow it every day. Surprisingly, when you put boundaries on your spending, you end up with more freedom!”

Budgeting has always been hard for our family. I am an editor and writer — my income fluctuates based on my work load. Some months I have more work than I can handle, and other months I don’t have enough to pay all the bills. That’s where budgeting comes in. I have been vocal to my kids about this since I can remember. This course really dives deep into budgeting and why it is so important. My kids asked a lot of questions after this section of the class. They wanted to know how I did our family budget, and what I found to work well for our family. We spent a few hours going over our budget and the kids created their own. We’ve revisited it every week or so to see how they are doing. So far, so good. They will surely have ups and downs with budgeting, but I am so proud of them for starting at such a young age. This class really helped solidify the importance of it.

Unit 2 goes into Credit & Debt. It teaches about life after High School, and how to be an aware consumer.

Unit 3 goes into Financial Planning and Insurance. It also goes into Bargain Shopping. Something my sweet daughter absolutely loves. There are many good ways to bargain shop — but also some pitfalls. We talked at length about this and this class allowed me an easy way to discuss my concerns about her shopping habits even at this early age.

Unit 4 goes into Income, Taxes & Giving. The kids and I spoke at length about taxes and why they are an important part of life. While it can be frustrating to give so much of your income away, we all have to remember that we have freedom because of taxes, we have roads to drive on because of taxes, and we have infrastructure that allows us to work from home, to commute into work, etc. We also have social programs for those less fortunate than us. We even took advantage of those programs when we had our first child. My husband and I fell on hard times and we couldn’t afford medical care. We received Medicaid for almost a year when my husband lost his job, and I was caring for an ill-child and unable to work. It was such a blessing. I get teary eyed just thinking about how we got through that time — from government assistance to friends and the church helping us with food and clothing. We almost lost our home. It was the most trying time of my life, but I am so thankful that there were services and kind people in our life that could help us. Now that we are on the other side financially, we tithe, pay our fair share in taxes (as we always did), and we give to those in need. This chapter in the class was something that hit home and one that I wanted to spend more time on with the kids. We spent a good week or so on Unit 4 as I wanted the kids to really understand how income, taxes & giving all work together in harmony. Money is so much more than dollars and cents. It’s personal. It evokes emotions and prompts life-changing decisions. I love the fact that each lecture teaches the black-and-white facts of finances, but also the necessary tools to become a WISE consumer who makes informed and responsible financial choices.

The videos are such an incredible resource in addition to the book. Dave Ramsey has a way with teaching and Rachel has enough meaningful experience to get the kids interested in what she has to say. The fact that she is younger also makes a difference in my opinion. Parents can tell their kids how and what to do until we are blue in the face, but if they notice people their age or slightly older doing something, they listen more intently.

Here are some highlights from the curriculum that I think you should know about.

Curriculum Features

  • Comprehensive, flexible, turnkey personal finance curriculum
  • Teaching delivered via video by the Foundations team of experts
  • Homeschool version of student text with added Scripture references
  • 150-plus-page digital teacher’s guide
  • Meets standards and benchmarks in all 50 states
  • Meets all Jump$tart national standards
  • Blended learning site with calculators, tools, and resources
  • 35-plus student activities
This course includes:
  • Digital Teacher’s Edition – This brand-new addition to the Foundations in Personal Finance for Homeschool curriculum is a 160-page teacher guide on CD-Rom with more than 35 activities, case studies, and assessments.
  • Instructional Videos – This set of five DVDs offers more than 12 hours of engaging classroom instruction taught by Dave Ramsey, Rachel Cruze and Chris Hogan.
  • Student Text – The Foundations in Personal Finance for Homeschool student text is a comprehensive, 288-page student softcover consumable. It provides students an opportunity to learn, practice, and apply important personal finance knowledge and skills. The 12 chapters are aligned with the National Standards for Financial Literacy.
  • foundationsU.com Blended Learning Site – Our Foundations in Personal Finance for Homeschool curriculum comes with access to our blended learning site. foundationsU.com is full of interactive tools, relevant articles, and real-world activities on a student-focused website designed for all devices.
The 12 chapters cover the following financial topics:
  • Introduction to personal finance
  • Saving
  • Budgeting
  • Debt
  • Life after high school
  • Consumer Awareness
  • Bargain shopping
  • Investing and retirement
  • Insurance
  • Money and relationships
  • Careers and taxes
  • Giving
The one-semester course is designed for 9th-12th graders.
All-in-all, I highly recommend this course for high school kids. Whether your child already has an understanding of money or not, this will enhance and teach your kids valuable lessons that they will take with them to college and beyond. I wish something like this existed when I was growing up, and that my parents taught me about how to manage money. So many young adults get into bad situations because of money mismanagement. It’s scary to think that it could happen to your kids too. Being in control of your finances provides such a freeing feeling. Debt can weigh on you so heavily and teaching our kids about this feeling early on is so important. Making this investment in your kids as they go off into the world as young adults is worth the cost in my opinion, and I’ve already recommended this course to many of my other homeschool mom friends.
Have you tried this course? What did you think? Do you have any other personal finance resources that you like? I’d love to hear about them!
You can find more information, as well as purchase this course by going to the Dave Ramsey website.

My Globetrotter Books Review

My Globetrotter Books – Bangkok, New York, Paris, Quebec & Montreal, Tokyo

When I had kids 10+ years ago, I knew that I wanted to teach them about the world. I wanted them to understand different cultures and different languages. My parents made it clear to me growing up that travel, and understanding people from all over the world was very important. So, when it was time for me to have my own children, I talked to my husband at length about the values my parents instilled in me when I was a child. It was important to me that we both instill a love of travel and understanding in our kids. Of course, we both love travel and other cultures so it wasn’t a surprise when I brought it up to him about 5 months into our pregnancy. Seeing his face light up when I talked about taking our kids internationally, and showing them other cultures was priceless. His family was in the military, so he spent a significant amount of time in other countries, including Singapore, France, Japan, Malaysia, Thailand, and Germany.

When I had the opportunity to review books about Globetrotting, the My Globetrotter Book series, I was ecstatic. I love finding books about travel, different cultures, etc for kids. There aren’t enough out there in my opinion, and it’s always neat to come across one. My kids and I read, drew, decoded, found, colored, associated and quizzed our way through Bangkok, Paris, Tokyo & New York! To say that we had a blast is an understatement. My kids have been to New York, Paris & Tokyo. They have not been to Bangkok. Even though my kiddos had been to some of these places before, these books kept them engaged and excited. They recognized a few places in each book, and also learned more about the city, the culture, and the history.

Bangkok – City of Angels – My Globetrotter Book

Over 8 million people live in Bangkok, Thailand. It’s a place where you’ll see a mix of both traditional Thai culture and architecture next to ultra-modern high rises.

 PARIS – My Globetrotter Book

Paris, the City of Lights! It is one of the great capitals of the world, with centuries of history everywhere you look, a mecca for fashion, fancy cuisine, and art. More than 2,000 years ago, a tribe called the Parisii, settled their small fishing village here on an island in the middle of the Seine River. Fast-forward to today, and you are now in a bustling metropolis of over 12 million people!

 TOKYO – My Globetrotter Book

Tokyo is the capital of Japan and the most populous metropolitan area in the world. Just think: in Tokyo, you are 1 among 37 million other people who live and work in this grand city! It is the seat of the Emperor of Japan and of the Government of Japan. Japanese culture and history are rich and complex. You can see, feel, and taste it wherever you go in the city.

 NEW YORK – My Globetrotter Book

New York is an iconic city! Just think about how many firms take place in the Big Apple, how many songs have been written about it. You probably also know about these New York City landmarks: the Statue of Liberty, the Empire State Building, Times Square, Central Park and so much more. It is the most populous city of the USA!

What my kids loved about these books:

  • They are about 24-28 pages long…giving them a good chunk of history and culture but not becoming too overwhelming
  • They have activities that are fun — not just mundane. Some activity books like these have some very “young” activities in them and my kids get bored. These books kept them engaged (my kid are 6, 8 & 11).
  • There is a certificate at the end that my kids got to put up on their wall. They thought that was so cool. My youngest even asked for his to be framed. Of course, I obliged. 🙂
  • There was an answer key in the back. If they were stumped, they would ask me to look up the answer and we’d talk about it together. It was a fun way for us to explore things they didn’t know.
  • These books have great illustrations and thick pages. The kids were in awe of how interesting the books were and that’s in part because of the illustrations and the packaging of the books.

Why I loved these books:

  • It was an easy way for me to introduce my kids to a different culture/part of the world.
  • The activities were age appropriate and sometimes a little challenging for them. They had to ask for help a few times and I love it when that happens! It stretches their brain!
  • The illustrations and packaging are top notch. They look and FEEL high end and like they will last.
  • They included history, but also games & puzzles to keep the kids interested.
  • They weren’t too long (24-26 pages each), so it was a great car ride activity or waiting room activity.
  • My kids asked to read the books after their normal school work was done. (SCORE!)
  • My kids started doing their own research on Bangkok after reading and participating in the books!

When I come across books that are special, I want to tell everyone I know about them. This is how I feel about the My Globetrotter Book series. Not only are they high quality, the author does an incredible job making the history and culture of these places shine bright. My kids are so excited about Bangkok that we are doing a 2-week unit study all about Bangkok, starting next week. This is in no small part because of these books. Seeing my kids get so excited about a new place and wanting to learn all about it brings tears to my eyes. Travel, culture and understanding of other parts of the world is a value that my husband and I share deeply. It’s something we’ve always wanted to instill in our kids, and seeing them react this way makes my heart so happy. If you or your kids are interested in travel, learning about different cultures, the history, and what makes them special, I highly recommend these books. The My Globetrotter Book series is something special, and I hope that you get the opportunity to read and draw, decode and learn about each city in this series. It’s something special when I get goosebumps seeing my kids engage with a book in this way, and I hope that you’ll get to feel the same thing with your kids when they read and interact with these books.

You can purchase them directly on Amazon, or by going to http://myglobetrotterbook.com/index.html. These titles are also all available in French on the Canadian market. The French versions will soon also be available worldwide through Amazon.

Happy travels!

Katie, Mom of 3

 

Writing to Win Review – 3 Integrated Reading – Writing Instructional Solutions

 

Writing to Win is a writing program for kids K-12.  The three solution program uses instructional “learning solutions” to provide daily writing guidance. The solutions can be used as a standalone program or in conjunction with other curricula.

What are the Three Learning Solutions?

Writing to Win recommends that you implement one curriculum solution at a time.

In year 1, it’s recommended you begin Writing to Win integrated reading-writing with  APPLIED GRAMMAR resources.  APPLIED GRAMMAR is a complete sentence-combining curriculum for teaching mature grammatical patterns and conventions of Standard Written English for grades 1-10.  Since it is available online, it provides extensive practice with key-boarding.

Plus, the program helps students learn to identify and explain the grammar patterns they practice.

APPLIED GRAMMAR provides practice in all three writing genres – argument/opinion, informational, and narrative.

In this solution, you can choose between print and online resources. The online version assigns lessons, scores responses, and provides students immediate feedback.

Writing to Win encourages homeschool parents to begin with WRITING ON DEMAND, in the second half of year 1, a solution that provides an interactive journal routine including writing prompts, a rubric for student self-assessment, and a PAL’s (peer-assisted learning system) response.  BTW, parents and siblings make great PALS!

With WRITING ON DEMAND, students learn how to write 1) logical arguments, 2) strong narratives and 3) detailed informational entries in the subjects of math, science,  and social studies, for grades K-12.  I like this interdisciplinary approach.

 

In year 2, it’s recommended that you move to the 3-week PAIRED TEXTS routine for each of the 4 Paired Text Packets.  PAIRED TEXTS provide a focused-writing solution for differentiating reading comprehension tasks and written responses to texts.

PAIRED TEXTS guide students in grades 3-12 through reading comprehension at four levels – literal, inferential, evaluative, and applied reading.

PAIRED TEXTS uses a scaffolding of tools and strategies to teach the classic structures of writing (such as compare-contrast, character analysis, and more).

PAIRED TEXTS also provides writing modules for pre-writing, drafting, revision, proofing and evaluating skills.

The program prompts students to write in argument/opinion, informational, and narrative genres.

 

Writing to Win Review – WHAT WE DID TODAY

You can see the APPLIED GRAMMAR books we used today – both parent and student editions, in Level 4. This homeschool package includes a teacher manual, student book, online webinars, and video tutorials. In level 4, there are 38 lessons that teach kids to craft simple sentences, combine sentences, build paragraphs, and use new sentence patterns in independent writing.

And below, are screenshots from an online lesson

 

 

What do I like about the Writing to Win Curricula?

  • I like that it’s for kids K-12 and that it’s a three solution program that builds confident writers.  We haven’t done three solutions yet, but I’m sure the kids are going to benefit from the three years of writing help.
  • Because it supports children as they grow as writers from kindergarten though 12th grade, I really don’t have to shop for another writing program for a while.  This gives my kids consistency – and frankly, it’s one less thing on my to-do list.  So, this is a win-win for the entire family.
  • It can be a standalone product or you can use it in conjunction with another writing program – options are always good. It’s so thorough that we’ve decided to use it as a standalone.
  • With the online program, kids get immediate feedback – and immediate feedback is always a plus.
  • Writing to Win offers lots of support to you the parent – including online videos for each separate task (2-minute short videos), plus longer lesson videos.
  • This program works well for both home and co-op use.
  • I like that homeschoolers were involved in the development of the program.  That’s right – homeschool organizations actually participated in the development of the Writing to Win instructional program.  As a result, it’s a great fit for homeschool students.

Writing to Win Review – What do I like about WRITING ON DEMAND Homeschool Package?

  • This curriculum provides a system for introducing and implementing 22 critical-thinking writing strategies.
  • The program prompts students to write in the argument/opinion, informational, and narrative genre
  • I love how interactive it is.
  • I’m crazy about the inter-disciplinary approach.  Not only do kids learn about language arts/writing – they learn math, science, social studies, and more.

Writing to Win Review – What do I like about PAIRED TEXTS Homeschool Package?

  • I like the scaffolding approach.
  • Paired Texts packets prompt students to write in argument/opinion, informational, and narrative genres.
  • The program teaches pre-writing, drafting, re-vising, proofing, and evaluating.
  • This program utilizes a PALS strategy.

Writing to Win Review – What do I like about APPLIED GRAMMAR Homeschool Package?

  • I appreciate the oral, written, and kinesthetic practice opportunities in APPLIED GRAMMAR, as the different options work well for all learning styles – and they build automaticity.
  • The program is student-driven.
  • Homeschoolers can choose between hard cop­ies (which I like) or online resources (which my kids prefer).
  • The online program improves keyboarding skills – a nice bonus.
  • Teaches all three writing genres.

 

Did you like this Writing to Win review? We really enjoyed writing it for you. You can check out our other reviews here: https://www.howtohomeschool.net/curriculum-reviews

 

HUE Animation Studio Product Review

 

 

HUE Animation Studio is a STEM.org approved education tool that encourages creativity and imagination.  Popular with homeschoolers and other educators, HUE Animation Studio  includes the HUE HD camera, a single license of HUE Animation stop motion software and a 64-page HUE Book of Animation full of tips and ideas.

This is a creative and educational pastime that can be enjoyed by the whole family!

My younger kids like it – my older kids like it – even my husband has a blast with this!  AND YOU can use it in YOUR homeschool endeavors!!

The HUE HD Camera

The HUE HD camera is a USB camera tht has a weighted base, flexible neck, a focus ring, and a microphone.

The camera:

  • Is a super tool for stop motion animation, live videos or time-lapse recordings (using HUE Animation in conjunction with the camera).  Time-lapse recordings can be really interesting when used in conjunction with science experiments.
  • Is a super fit for student presentations.
  • Works for video journals (vlogging.)
  • Is great for interactive whiteboard lessons.
  • Can be an alternative to a basic microscope.
  • Can be removed from its base and plugged directly into a USB port for use as a webcam with online chat applications, such as Skype, FaceTime, Google Talk, Yahoo! Messenger and every other major network. It can also work with web-casting services such as uStream.

There are system requirements.  Unless your computers are really old, the requirements shouldn’t be an issue.  The HUE HD camera works on all computers which have a USB port and support UVC ‘plug and play’ cameras, including Windows (10, 8, 7, Vista, XP), macOS (Mac OS X 10.4.3 and later) and most Linux distributions.

    • Suitable for both 32-bit and 64-bit editions of Windows 10, 8, 7 and macOS
    • Also compatible with the 32-bit editions of Windows XP and Vista
    • Universal Mac compatibility: works with both Intel and PowerPC Macs
    • 128 MB RAM (512 MB RAM recommended)
    • Available USB 2.0, 3.0 or 1.1 port
    • Microphone requires a compatible sound card and speakers (recommended 16 bit or higher)

Info on the HUE Animation Software

HUE Animation is easy-to-use, user-friendly software that lets users visually express their ideas.  Just install from a CD or download the software installer from huehd.com.

Your kids can make a LEGO® brick film; animate their own characters with claymation or capture a flower as it blooms using time-lapse photography.  They can use for fun, or for academic purposes.  And you can too!

Again, there are system requirements – they weren’t an issue for us:

    • PC: Windows 10, 8, 7 or XP and graphics drivers with OpenGL 2.0 support
    • Mac: OS X 10.5 (Leopard) or higher and an Intel processor, or any Mac running macOS
    • 512MB RAM (1GB recommended)

HUE Book of Animation

The HUE Book of Animation is a 64-page full color guide that features step-by-step instructions for creating 20 stop motion videos.

The book contains ideas for creative projects using claymation, pixilation and many other techniques.

Examples of HUE HD creations highlighted in the book can be found here.

        You can view additional videos in the HUE Animation gallery on Creatubbles, and leave feedback for other creators in the form of bubbles and comments on their pages.

HUE Animation Studio Product Review – What I like about this product

  • It fosters creativity.  Gotta love that!
  • It’s easy to use.  My younger kids use it – as do my older kids.  I’ve used it for interactive whiteboard presentations and as a microscope.  This is a tool that works for EVERYONE in the family.  My husband recently spent three hours “playing with” this educational tool.
  • It makes learning fun.  Fun learning “sticks” with my kids.  Yours too?
  • And while your kids are having fun, they may be learning about science, and gaining new software skills. That’s a win all the way around!
  • Everything – and I do mean EVERYTHING you need to get started is included in the HUE Animation Studio kit. In fact, the box is a stage you can use for your stop action masterpieces.
  • The camera is easy to use, portable, sturdy, and attractive (I like the overall design).  And it contains a built-in microphone.
  • The HUE software includes sound effects,  printable backgrounds and activity sheets – plus, it allows users to add text and graphics.
  • The HUE Book of Animation has step-by-step instructions for creating 20 stop motion videos.  It’s a great starting point.  Once your kids make a couple of these – get proficient with the software and techniques – they’ll come up with fun ideas of their own.  You’ll enjoy watching their creativity bloom.
  • The company offers so much help, including helpful hintstutorials and the HUE Animation Studio Quickstart Guide.
  • Is a Parents’ Picks Award winner – I almost always like Parents’ Picks award products.

 

Did you like this HUE Animation Studio product review? We really enjoyed writing it for you. You can check out our other reviews at https://www.howtohomeschool.net/curriculum-reviews