Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Reading Kingdom {Review}

Reading Kingdom Review

We were recently given the chance to review Reading Kingdom Online from Reading Kingdom.

Reading Kingdom teaches children ages 4-10 years old to read and write to a 3rd grade level. Before starting the program each child takes an evaluations to determine which level they should start in the program. Reading Kingdom customizes itself to each student meaning the program is sure to work for every child in the age range. Reading Kingdom is the only program to teach all 6 skills required for Reading and Writing success. 

Children as young as 4 can start the program even not knowing how to use a keyboard or a mouse or even if they don't recognize letters yet. 

Reading Kingdom can be used with advanced readers as well to help them move to a 3rd grade reading and writing level quicker. 

If your child is a struggling reader, this program will help them catch up and learn the skills they need to know to a 3rd grade level. 

Reading Kingdom is also the perfect curriculum to use for a student who struggles with ADHD, Dyslexia and other learning disabilities. 

Reading Kingdom offers many resources online as well. They offer:
  • Reading apps
  • Learning tips
  • Videos
  • Great books for kids
  • Worksheets for kids
  • Educational Activities for kids
  • and many more helpful resources

Reading Kingdom can be used as a full Reading curriculum for homeschoolers! 

When we first got the product I had Monster take the placement test to see where he needed to be. I was a little worried since Monster already reads chapter books that this would not be for him, but he tested and it showed that he did need some work. So he started on Level 4 out of 5. 

Monster has found this to be very fun. He even asks to play this "game". When we first started Monster wanted to do several lessons in one day, but as it states it is best to spread the lessons out over the week, I would not let him. He does one lesson 4 times a week. 

Every day that Monster is required to do a lesson I can tell him and he can go online himself and find what he needs to do. Using the program all on his own, he can find the dashboard and click on his name to get started. I like that the program picks right up and does not require several different areas to click on to get to the next lesson. 

Every lesson has bright and colorful pictures or backgrounds. I love that they use the bright colors because I feel like this will keep a child interested. Plus the cute little animations here and there add to the fun of the program. 

One thing I really enjoy about Reading Kingdom as a parent are the reports and progress reports we are able to get and look over. You can log into your account and view a report to see how your child is progressing. Plus, they will send out a progress report and let you know if your child needs any attentions in any area. Since Monster is at that age where he enjoys working on most things independently, this works great as I can still go online and check how he is doing without having to watch over him. 

The only issue we seem to have with the program is the button to go to the next page does not always pop up fast enough. This is usually when he is require to read a passage of sorts. He will read through it and have to sit there and wait for the button to pop up. I think it would be more helpful if the next page button was just already on the pages so he did not have to wait. 

Monster and I have both really enjoyed him using this program and he will continue to use this program until he completes it.

You can try Reading Kingdom Online for free for 30 days!

If you would like to find Reading Kingdom and see if the program is a good fit for your family, please click on the social media tabs below:

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Reading Kingdom Review
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Thursday, October 1, 2015

Middlebury Interactive Languages Review

 Middlebury Interactive Languages Review
We were recently given the chance to review Elementary Spanish 1: Grades 3-5 from Middlebury Interactive Languages. 
Monster has been asking for about a year now to take a Spanish class. Since we are no longer at our co-op this year and I barely made it through Spanish in High School, reviewing the Elementary Spanish 1: Grades 3-5 came at the perfect time.

Middlebury Interactive Languages was founded in 2010.They offer all students access to several language courses online. 

Elementary Spanish 1: Grades 3-5 from Middlebury Interactive Languages is in introductory course that provides fun with learning. Each lesson starts off with a story and has words that the children will be learning for each one. The stories are based on authentic stories, myths or legends from many Spanish speaking cultures. This course focuses mostly on learning vocabulary words and basic grammar is learned through the stories, games, songs and activities in the lessons. 
 Middlebury Interactive Languages Review
With Elementary Spanish 1: Grades 3-5 students become comfortable reading, writing, speaking and listening to Spanish meanings. Since this is a starter class, you don't need any previous classes before this one.
What we think:
Monster has really loved using this program. I think this program came at a perfect time for us too. We were trying to add in new and fun curriculum to add to our day and this was the perfect fit for us. Monster even will ask to do this program before starting other workbook work. 
Some of the main things that I really enjoy about this program are:
  • Colorful pictures- For children I feel like this helps keep them engaged. 
  • Story- I love that they start with a story before learning your words and then you go over the story again and see if you can pick out your new vocabulary words. What a great way to keep children interested and listening! 
  • Record buttons- There are spots where you can record yourself saying the words. They also include the word again if you need to rehear to word. This is one of our favorite features. To be able to hear yourself saying the word really helps to make sure you are understanding the correct way to say the word. 
  • Assessments- at the end of each lesson there are areas to quiz yourself to make sure your are understanding the words you are learning. I love this feature as I can check to make sure he is understand each vocabulary word and their meaning. 

The fact that Monster is actually learning from this program is a great thing of course! We have been visiting family in Houston and he is already telling them how to say certain words he has learned in Spanish! I love that he is excited about a program that is a learning tool! 

Are your children interested in learning another language? This is a great way for them to learn! Plus it is all online!

 You can get this program yearly for:

$119 per semester without a teacher
+$175 per semester with a teacher (total for 1 student comes to $294)
For the program we reviewed 2 semesters comes out to 45 days of content. 

If you would like to check out Middlebury Interactive Languages and what other languages they have to offer K-12, please feel free to click on their social media accounts below:

Please feel free to click the banner below to see what others thought of this program and other languages from Middlebury Interactive Languages: 

 Middlebury Interactive Languages Review
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Welcome October

Today is October 1st and I can't not believe how quickly this year is going by. Wasn't it just the start of Summer?

This week Monster and I have been in Houston hanging out with family. We are here till Saturday. It has been tons of fun and Monster has gotten in plenty of play time with his two cousins.

Yesterday we went to the Children's Museum of Houston. I was nervous taking 3 kids on my own, but they did fantastic and they loved that place. I would suggest anyone in the area or anyone visiting to check it out!

This morning it was in the low 80's so I sent the kids outside to paint! 

They even had a paint war after this but those pictures are on my big camera and will have to wait! 

Stay tuned. I have a new review coming up by the end of the day today and I have a Fall Activities post coming! 

Monday, September 28, 2015

USAolopy Review

 USAopoly Review

We were recently given the chance to review Tapple-Fast Word Fun and Wonky:The Crazy Cubes Card Game from USAolopy.

USAolopy is company determined to bring fun games to families. USAolopy has been bringing fun games to families since 1994. A great way to bring fun, laughter and memories to families all around.

About the games:

 USAopoly Review

Tapple: Fast Word Fun- is an award winning game. A faced paced word game for ages 8+. This game gives family and friends excitement as they rush to beat the timer!

Simply pick a card from the stack, ( 144 fun categories) white and blue side are easier and the red and yellow side area little harder, announce the topic and push the buzzer and pass to the next player. You have 10 seconds to push a letter and say a word that starts with that letter that goes with the topic! You can play with 2+ players. ! First person to 3 cards...wins!! This game is great for family time, friends visiting or even to help with vocabulary! When you're done playing, the cards hide away on the back/bottom of the game. Perfect for keeping up with them. You will need two AA batteries for this game.

USAopoly Review
Wonky: The Crazy Cubes Card Game- is a fun filled card game where you build wobbly towers with odd shaped blocks. Trick your opponent as you play a small block on a large block. Then they have to find a way to add another block without tipping over the whole tower! You can also play a reserve card for payback! Play all your cards without tipping over the tower and you WIN! 

Wonky: The Crazy Cubes Card Game comes with 9 odd shaped blocks ( Wonky blocks have 3 flat sides and 3 curved sides) and 54 strategy cards. Can be played by children 8+ and you need 2+ players. When you are done playing you can place all pieces in a storage bag that comes with the game. 

Both games retail for $19.95

What we thought:

Monster and I were both so excited to open up and try both games right away! 
Tapple: Fast Word Fun- Monster and I both loved right away. It came at the perfect time too. Monster was learning Verbs and Adjectives and both of those were topics on the cards! We were able to use both of these as a learning tool to go along with our lessons! This game is also a great way to get your mind thinking. I really thought I would be able to fly though it, but some of them make you think! 

For the easier cards I think younger kids could play along if you don't use the timer. I know the timer makes it more fun, but for younger siblings ( or in our case nieces and nephews) who want to play and learn the game, not using the timer is a great way to get them started! We have played this game several times and it pretty much stays out and ready to go when we want to play a round. Right now we are visiting family in Houston and even brought this game along. The adults even enjoyed playing against each other last night while waiting on dinner to cook! This game is faced paced so you can get a few rounds in very quickly!

Wonky: The Crazy Cubes Card Game- We also had a blast with this game. Not knowing which card your opponent was going to play was nerve wrecking and fun all in one. It is interesting to watch though and see how the tower can be built without the blocks falling over. Also learning how to set the blocks on the other blocks so that balance out. Monster learned very quickly which blocks were best to play first and then which blocks to try and use last. It is great watching his mind work and watching him figure out which block he should and can play next! 

You can find USAolopy on their social media at:

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 USAopoly Review
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Meet em' Mondays {The Ahlgrims}

Welcome to Meet em' Mondays. 

This week we have the Ahlgrims family from Oklahoma with us. 

Family Name: The Ahlgrims

Ages of your children:
Vesper is 3, and Grey is 2.

How long have you been homeschooling?
Two months

What state do you live in and is it a homeschool friendly state?
Oklahoma, and yes, it is a fantastic place to homeschool!

What is homeschool to you?
Creating an environment that promotes learning in all situations for our children. It also means the freedom to tailor lessons to the learning styles for my children in order to set them up for success in the future.

What made you initially decide to start homeschooling?
I was an education major in college and my husband and I always knew it was something we wanted to try. When we realized our oldest was advanced, it only reaffirmed our decision to do so!

How do you choose your curriculum?
When I first began doing research, I thought that I would need to choose a style and a curriculum right away. But because we're only doing PreK/ K, that hasn't been the case. Instead of using an out-of-the-box curriculum, we chose to create our own Unit Studies with a theme for each week. We cover reading and writing every day, and then down either Math, Science, or Art. We're using the few couple of years as a trial period to figure out what type of curriculum we'd actually like to use in the future!

Do you stay with a schedule or are you more flexible?
We stick pretty closely to a schedule, as my kids tend to respond better to having a predictable routine. But our school only takes about two hours each day, so we're flexible within our schedule as well!

How do you handle the family schedule?
I keep a paper calendar and one large family calendar in the kitchen so everyone knows what's going on and when.

How do you make sure your child has regular interaction with peers?
We are very active in our church and attend there about three times a week for various activities. We also do one of our schooling days at a local Early Learning Center- a "Mother's Day Out" of sorts- where they have a regular teacher and classmates and attend music and PE classes as well as work on things like letters and colors. Additionally, our daughter is enrolled in Tap and Ballet classes at a dance studio.

What resources are available if you do not understand how to teach the material you are supposed to teach?
Luckily, we haven't run into this yet! But I take comfort in knowing that our area has plenty of local co-ops to attend, and I have lots of online groups of other homeschooling moms and teachers that are more than willing to lend a helping hand. The homeschool community really is one of the most generous I've ever seen! Sharing knowledge is a really awesome thing!

What has been the most surprising part of homeschooling?

We originally started homeschooling because our oldest was already beginning to read at 3 years old. She craves school work and I knew she would really excel- and she has, but the most surprising part is the benefit her little brother has received from our homeschooling! He is only 2.5 and has had little interest in learning traditional things so far (letters, colors, shapes, etc) but lately, just being included in our daily school time, he has really started to open up and spout off answers when he knows them! You can tell he's so proud of himself, and it really makes my heart happy as his momma!

You can follow The Ahlgrims family on their blog at: Everyday Light

Thank you so much Chelsea for sharing your beautiful family with us! 

Monday, September 21, 2015


Well, as you can see we do not have a Meet em' Monday this week. I have sent out questions to other families, but have not received anything back from them yet :( I am starting to rethink this idea.

We had a pretty good weekend. Hope everyone else did as well.

Monster got up this morning at 11am and I am sure he needed that extra rest. He got up and ate breakfast and then he got started with his work. I was surprised this morning when it took him all of an hour and a half to finish up all his school work. He even did 3 Math lessons, Spanish, Reading, Language Arts and Science. It was a great way to start the week.

Math this morning he worked on Volume and he has to use multiplication in this, so it was a great review. He also worked on two other lessons that had to do with directions.

This is him working this morning in his adorable new shirt from OshKosh B'Gosh. I am loving that store. 

Monster and I last week. 

Last Thursday we got to go to Sea Life in Grapevine with some awesome friends of ours. This is their first year homeschooling their 5 year old. He is so adorable. Monster had so much fun walking around and looking at the animals with him. 

We loved getting to see all the different animals. We even did a workshop class on Octopus and Squid. 

Nothing exciting planned for this week, but next week we leave for Houston! We are going to visit family for the week! Another great thing about homeschooling is being able to go visit family whenever we want! 

Friday, September 18, 2015

Super Teacher Worksheets {Review}

Super Teacher Worksheets Review

We were recently given the chance to review an Individual Membership to Super Teacher Worksheets

Super Teacher Worksheets Individual Membership gets you online access to hundreds of different types of worksheets. They have worksheets for:
  • Math
  • Reading
  • Science
  • Social Studies
  • Handwriting ( both print and cursive)
  • Grammer
  • Spelling List (grades 1-5)
  • Holidays
  • Worksheet generator
  • Phonics
  • and several others! 
You are able to use these worksheets for your children and can print off as many worksheets at one time as you like! Every worksheets is two pages long. One page includes the worksheet and the other page is the answer key. I love that they include the answer key.

The individual membership gets one person unlimited access for a year for only $20 a year! How great is that! I really consider that $20 to be doable for as many different types of worksheets you can get with this program, plus even being able to create your own worksheets if need be! 

What we thought:

We have been using Super Teacher Worksheets since the day we got it. We have used worksheets from this site almost every day. I have loved having a website that I can go to and print off extra worksheets to go along with our lessons. I have even added in extra lessons to using this worksheets from this site. I love that I can use the search tool to find worksheets to go along with our theme. 

Monster and I recently studies Communities and I was able to use this website to pull several worksheets to go along with our theme. 

One thing I have really loved about this program is I can easily use it with Monsters Math program. Right now his Math program is online and has no worksheets. I can easily log into Super Teacher Worksheet and find a worksheet or two to go along and print it off. 

The worksheets can be printed in black and white or color. I love the bright colors they use on their worksheets as to me, that is just an added bonus for the children!

I love that they have such a great variety of worksheets as well. I can use worksheets from this site for almost every single lesson I have been doing the last few weeks. I was even able to pull some Reading Comprehensive worksheets as extra practice for Monster here and there. 

So far, Monster has loved having extra worksheets. He has even asked for me to print off some extra brain teasers and puzzles for him to do for fun on the side of his work! 

Here Monster is using two different worksheets that we used when working on Calendars and Months in Math. 

This one has been a favorite of Monsters. We learned all about communities and Monster was able to print off a Rural, Suburban and Urban Community that he colored, cut and put together to make his own little towns! 

Here, we were able to find worksheets on Synonyms and Antonyms and use them for extra practice! 

And then of course the Math ones that we use daily!! 

You can find Super Teacher Worksheets online:

If you would like to see what others from the TOSReview Crew thought about this product and how they used this product, please click the banner below:
Super Teacher Worksheets Review
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