Scroll down to read about how to enter!

It’s that time of year again. Our books are getting tattered. The kids are well over the excitement of being in a new grade. We’re tired of the cold, cloudy winter days. Blah.Β 

It’s time for a mid-term makeover!

Yep. I need a homeschooling-pick-me-up! I love looking through catalogs, reading online reviews and perusing homeschooling blogs and magazines! Getting new ideas helps me restore vision and zeal. I wanted to share a few of the things I’m looking into trying for next semester and the next school year.

I suppose the first thing I’m mulling over, is the idea of homeschooling all year long. I have five beautiful children. They have doctors appointments, dentist visits, state-mandated testing, piano lessons, dreaded “sick days” and once in a while, we just want a day off for fun! Too many interruptions leave me feeling behind and cause my children to race to catch up. That leads to sloppy work, which leads to re-doing said sloppy work, and which leads to all of us being frazzled! So. Not. Fun. I am thinking that if we work year round, with only a month off in the summer, we could relax during the year and enjoy our school days more. We could work during bad weather, and enjoy the outdoors during nice weather. Also, it would reduce what I call “summer amnesia” which is the direct result of taking a 12 week summer break from our studies!

For my pre-schooler I’m thinking about:Β 
Rod & Staff pre-school workbooks. They are cute and biblical! I like the fact that they are very relaxed and easy to use. No teacher prep – my favorite feature! In the past I’ve used the A Beka K4 materials for preschool. I found the K4 to be very similar to K5, and since I use A Beka for kindergarten, I don’t want to be redundant. I like variety! πŸ™‚ Β 

For my 5 year old, we’re going to try:
Math-U-See! Yes, I’ve been “studyin'” on this for some time now. To buy or not to buy, that has been the question! It was a tough decision. Last year, I almost made the large initial investment, but was unsure about it. My husband said, “When in doubt, don’t.” So, I didn’t. THEN, not too long ago, I saw that Math-U-See offers a 90 day money back guarantee! I am currently giving it a try. So far, it’s a go! My five year old LOVES it. My 3rd grader even likes it, though not as enthusiastically. (But I suspect that it’s because he just doesn’t want to admit it! He works too quickly to be totally against it!)

For my 3rd – soon to be 4th!- grader:
Speedy Spanish – This is a workbook written on the 3rd grade level, but it’s not too immature for an older child. It comes with CD’s that pronounce the words. It has matching activities, scripture memory Β and songs in both Spanish and English. It also includes mini “flashcards” that the student colors and uses to practice with or be quizzed by. It looks like it will be mucho grande fun! πŸ˜‰ Read Cathy Duffy’s review HERE.

A few things I’m trying for my 6th – soon to be 7th! – grader:
Modesty Matters You CAN Sew! This is a home Ec. curriculum that teaches step by step how to sew some simple things. It includes DVDs and written text work. I have viewed a few classes and am very pleased! It begins with notions and how to thread the machine and moves slowly from there. It gives a girl a basic knowledge of sewing – which is just what I wanted!

The Write Stuff and From Heart to Page – Journaling Through the Year for Young Writers. Two creative writing sources that I am eager to try. The Write Stuff is a writing course that gets the student to write, without concern for proper punctuation or grammar at first. It gives ideas to get their juices flowing. I’m looking forward to giving it a whirl!Β 
From Heart to Page is a small booklet of journal entry prompts. I think it will work for either my daughter or my son. This looks to be useful whenever I will want the kids to write only a paragraph or two.
I have enjoyed using the ACE Literature/Creative Writing Paces, but since writing is near and dear to my heart, I’m always looking for ways to encourage and enhance this skill in my kiddos.Β 

Life of Fred – This is a math series that builds math into a story. If you like the Charlotte Mason method of schooling, then this is your kind of math book! My daughter, who loves to read, is enjoying this very much. But…I’m still not sure that her understanding is any greater. We will forge ahead and see what happens. If she needs more help, I’m looking into trying Math-U-See with her as well.Β 

Literature – I’ve always loved the A Beka Book literature anthologies. They select excellent stories and classical artwork to offer a very well rounded literature education. For my oldest girl, we’ll be using their Of PeopleΒ book. I’ve skimmed it and fully believe she will finish it before her 7th grade year is over. She will also continue with her usual voracious reading from our library. πŸ™‚

Health – A while back, I purchased Prudence and the Millers and Prudence and Your Health. It has since occupied a nice space on one of our bookshelves. {blushing} I will be dusting it off and getting my money’s worth this year! πŸ™‚

When the mid-term blues overwhelm me, I look at my 11 year old working a math problem, or writing an essay, or reading a book in the Wrinkle in Time series and I remember that I did that! I taught her to read! I taught her to write the alphabet, I taught her about sentences, how to add, subtract, multiply, divide! I even taught her how to tie her shoes! That gives me a great deal of satisfaction and encouragement. I can look at my other children’s abilities and receive more joy. Count your “homeschooling blessings” the next time the blues drift your way. You will feel better immediately! πŸ™‚


So…how ’bout you? Do you need a mid-term makeover? If so, enter my giveaway! I will be drawing a name on February 15. The winner will have a choice between a $25 gift card to Christian Book Distributors or a year’s subscription to Home School Enrichment Magazine! You have until midnight on Valentine’s Day to do one or more of the following: Tweet about this giveaway, post this giveaway on Facebook, post about this giveaway on your blog. Leave a comment telling me which one(s) you have done. You will be entered once for each thing you do. On Facebook? Why not “like” my page? πŸ™‚Β 

***Winner will be announced at 8 AM, Tuesday, February 15, 2011!***

I look forward to adding some zing to your mid-term!Β 

Happy Homeschooling!

18 thoughts on “My Mid-Term Makeover and a GIVEAWAY! {Closed}

  1. Anonymous says:

    Posting about your giveaway. πŸ™‚
    Michelle Corning


  2. Terry Basham says:

    Hey Valerie; Your old Dad-in-law, loves you and your little ones. And you can throw your hubby Bumper in there, too. πŸ™‚ Love the pics.


  3. Sonja says:

    I shared your giveaway on facebook. I really enjoy reading your blog!


  4. Pat says:

    I shared on facebook and on my blog.


  5. Nugget says:

    I already “liked” your page. πŸ™‚ I will try and post your blog site on facebook. We will see if I can get it there. πŸ™‚ I will check out the speedy spanish site too, thank you. Hope everything is going well for you guys in the snow/ice.


  6. Stephanie A says:

    I love to read your blog, Valerie. I posted your contest on my facebook page, thank you for the chance to win.


  7. Jennifer Pullen says:

    I posted this on facebook. I enjoy reading your blog, keep posting!


  8. Anonymous says:

    I posted on FB…sorry it took me so long to post on here, but life happened.
    Rachel S.


  9. Julie H says:

    POsted on FB . . . tried to like your FB blog page but couldn't navigate so just settled for friending u. Happy Valentine's everyone

    God Bless


  10. Hi there! I shared the link to your giveaway on my Facebook Page!

    ~ Kim

    P.S. I “Liked” your page on Facebook as well!


  11. just shared you on FB! πŸ˜€

    ~Vicki Skaggs~


  12. and I just tweeted about the giveaway! πŸ™‚

    ~Vicki Skaggs~


  13. And just posted it on my blog as well! πŸ™‚

    ~Vicki Skaggs~


  14. oh and I have “liked” your page for awhile now. πŸ™‚ Your words are always very encouraging to me! πŸ˜€

    ~Vicki Skaggs~


  15. I already “like” this. I posted on facebook & on someone elses bolg. “A mamas hands”


  16. Prairiemouse says:

    Valerie I am posting on my ART blog (a lot of homeschoolers visit me there) and on Facebook. I will also post on my homeschool blog.

    I can't wait to see who the lucky winner is!


  17. Anonymous says:

    It shows you how outdated I am since I don't know how to do any of the things you listed to enter your giveaway. LOL!!! I already won –since I have you for a sister. Love you!


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