Women of God can never be like women of the world. The world has enough women who are tough; we need women who are tender. There are enough women who are coarse; we need women who are kind. There are enough women who are rude; we need women who are refined. We have enough women of fame and fortune; we need more women of faith. We have enough greed; we need more goodness. We have enough vanity; we need more virtue. We have enough popularity; we need more purity. ~ Margaret D. Nadald

Our Father also gifted us with the nature to nurture, keen sensitivity to the Spirit, selflessness, discernment, and heroic faith. No wonder our Father placed us at the heart of the family and thus at the center of the plan of salvation. We are the Lord's secret weapon. ~ Sheri Dew

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10 April 2012

TOS Review - AIMS It's About Time

Last year I wrote up a review on AIMS (Activities Integrating Math and Science) Primarily Magnets, and now I've had the chance to work with their "It's About Time" program.

I was sent a fantastic 176 page book full of information, with 22 activities, and an accompanying cd to reproduce print outs and am looking forward to using it more! (Our move has gotten in the way of using this book the way that I would have wanted to, but we've still enjoyed it anyway!) The format of It's About Time is one that we were familiar with coming from the Primarily Magnets Book, you can see a preview here.

It's created for use with children who are grades k-2, but we involve everyone around here... the little guys love to color pictures, and I think that because of the way the lessons are written that they also understand a lot of what we're working on. Through this curriculum we've been able to introduce a lot of new vocabulary as well as concepts that I had no clue how to address before (if you read my Primarily Magnets review you'll understand where I'm coming from!)

The first few Concepts and Skills covered in "It's About Time" include:
-Developing a Sense of Time: The Long and Short of It *identifying long time and short time* (HELLO! This one is HUGE!!! My children used to think that everything takes F O R E V E R... I'm sure you've never heard that right? :-D. Thank you AIMS!)

-Ordering Events: Before and After *indentifying before and after* Line Up the Time *ordering events in the school day*

-Quantifying Time: Time Counts *timing by counting swings of a pendulum* Time in a Bottle! *timing with a sand timer*

-Developing an Awareness of Clocks: Clocks, Clocks, and More Clocks *comparing and contrasting a variety of clocks and watches*

We're excited to continue on in our learning which will include Reading an Analog Clock, Reading a Digital Clock, Elapsed Time, and more "Playful and Intelligent Practice" (where we can use fun activities to put our new knowledge to work!)

I really enjoy AIMS products and have found them to be very affordable. I would highly recommend It's About Time! We have a section on time learning in our regular math curriculum, but I love that AIMS specifically focuses on in and supplements in such a way that it could be a full curriculum for us in and of itself. These are so fun, straight forward, and leave my children inspired and excited about science and math! Plus the hands-on teaching method means a lot to me... I want my children to REALLY learn these concepts and not just fill their minds with information quickly and move on.

The "It's About Time" book+ CD can be purchased for $21.95 from the AIMS store, or you can also purchase a downloadable e-book for the same price.

To see what other crew members are saying about "It's About Time" as well as other AIMS products, you can go here.

*As part of the 2012 TOS Homeschool Crew I was given a free copy of this product in exchange for my honest review."

01 April 2012

TOS Review - Amazing Animals by Design

My children and I have had the chance to review a new book put out by Debra Haagen, (who is also a fellow homeschool mom and military wife!), called Amazing Animals by Design.

Amazing Animals by Design is a children picture book that provides a Christian view to explain why certain animals have such different unique features..... for example, the back cover reads: "Why is a giraffe’s neck so tall? Why do zebras have stripes? Did all of these things happen by accident? When John and Sarah visit the zoo, they ask these questions and many more. Their parents and the zookeepers keep using the word design, but what does that mean? With its relevant message and exciting presentation, this is the perfect book to help introduce children to intelligent design."

I definitely have to agree with this synopsis. My children were engaged throughout the book and we all learned a lot (I'm really jealous of Debra's kids, and a bit embarrassed that I hadn't taken the time to consider all of the fascinating things that this book brings up to teach to my kids). I appreciate the way that Amazing Animals by Design introduces the concept of intelligent design... I also appreciate that it is a good mix of information. While I believe in creation, and that is what I teach my children, there are times when Christian based texts lack factually.... I was very pleased that this book was presented in a straight forward way that made sense.

The night before our first encounter with this book we had watched a documentary on penguins, and while reading this book my children started bringing up what features God had given them. It was great to see that they were making correlations with the information in the book without any prompting from me. As far as I was concerned I was just reading them a nice book about a brother and sister who go to the zoo together... what they got out of it was so much more than I had even hoped for. My children (to include my 6, 5, and 3 year old) were all able to tell me about the things they had learned... like why an elephant has a trunk and what would happen if it didn't, and about cheetah's and caracals (yah, I've seen caracals but I had know idea that they weren't like your typical "cats"! Who knew not all cats had great balance?)

I don't know that there's anything that I would change about Amazing Animals by Design, except to say that it should be made into a series. We would enjoy being able to read more about different animals through a story book and in a way that highlights the fact that God created all things for His purpose.

I think Amazing Animals by Design would be a great addition to any family's library... I reviewed an e-book version, so that was more difficult to just have the kids sit down with while I read, but you're really lucky because now the book is in print and can be purchased here for $8.99. (The e-book is also available for $7.99).

To see what other crew members think about this product please feel free to go here.

**As a member of The Old Schoolhouse homeschool crew team I was given this product free of charge in exchange for my honest review.**