3rd Grade Curriculum, 4th Grade, 5th Grade, Art, Charlotte Mason, Critical Thinking and Logic, Curriculum, Education, Family, Geography, History, Homeschool, Language Arts, Literature Base, Math, Read Alouds, Reviews, S.T.E.A.M, Science, Writing

The Learn & Live: Mesoamerica Review

Complimentary product received from The Learn & Live Letter!

This post contains affiliate links at no extra charge to you the reader.

As a homeschool mom, I have always been stuck on what part of history to teach in our home and how. There are so many wonderful curricula you can choose from, but if you are looking for true gentle history the choices tend to narrow down immensely. We enjoy unit study learning in our home and at times we just want to step away from traditional textbook history and have fun. I was really happy when The Learn & Live Letter ladies reached out to me to check out their November Mesoamerica unit.

About The Learn & Live Letter

The Learn & Live Letter was created by two homeschool moms who wanted to bring the joy of play-based learning to their children. They created their own homeschools around the philosophy of interested-led and hands-on learning. Cynthia and Justine enlisted the help of several well-known highly qualified contributors in the education and homeschool community to help create monthly themed 4-week play-based learning units. Each unit covers science, history, geography, art, music, math, reading, and writing. The Learn & Live Letter also embraces the Charlotte Mason approach, you won’t find worksheets or busy work in these monthly themed units. If you are wondering about the diversity of The Learn & Live Letter team you will not be disappointed.

Because learning comes naturally to your child’s development. They learn with and by the world around them—and, as parents and caretakers, all we have to do is open that door.

The Learn & Live Letter

The Learn & Live Letter units are designed for the homeschool parent, while non-homeschool families can benefit from this wonderful program, the design is for that homeschool parent. There are 3 levels to choose from level 1 (3 to 5 ), Level 2 (5 to 7), and level 3 (7 to 12). Families can choose to do a monthly subscription or a yearly subscription. The yearly subscription would guarantee you 36 weeks of lessons. Each level is different and provides age-appropriate activities. The units come to you via email and you click the link that will take you to your levels monthly instruction pages. The company also provides you a schedule of when you will receive the next unit’s email which is always a week before the upcoming month. There is also scope and sequence you can look at which is great for pacing and lining up your lessons. The company is still growing so the 2022 lineup is still building.

November Mesoamerica Unit

Mesoamerica Unit !

Our unit to review for you is the Level 3 November Mesoamerica unit. The Mesoamerica unit took us on a journey to Mexico and South America. Each week comes with its own supply list, resources, and embedded links. Everything you need is in your weekly guide you can add to it if you like, but you are fine with just the items they list. We studied about the Mayans, Aztecs, and Olmecs. The Mesoamerica unit captured my son’s interest he was intrigued to learn about these wonderful ancient Indigenous tribes’ culture, history, and contributions to civilization. For 2 weeks he was stuck on learning about the Olmecs and I let him stay in this history as long as he liked. We created terra cotta pottery, tried to play the Mayan game Ulama which gave us all quite a workout, and we built the Temple of Kukulkan out of legos.

November Mesoamerica Unit

Each monthly 4-week unit has 5 lessons each lesson has 2 – 4 activities. What I did notice is that Lesson 1 of each week usually had 2 activities that focused on geography or history for that week. You do not have to do each activity in each lesson. We average 2-3 activities each lesson, but because we plan to do this unit again I left wiggle room for next year. While we worked on the Mesoamerica unit we discovered there were many other ancient indigenous tribes so we will look into these next year. I highly recommend you bookmark the monthly units link on your iPad or tablet. I also printed out each week. The company also provides you with a skills/activity tracker.

The Learn & Live Letter units provide gentle history if you follow me you know I teach gentle truth history in our home. The Learn & Live Letter provides the conversation starter for you and you are free to take it from there. They do use Honest History magazines in their units which are great history resource. So if you don’t have these you will need to invest in them. I found the supply list to be inexpensive and the majority of the items we already had at home. The book resources I found all of them at our local library and were inexpensive on Amazon. The Usborne Encyclopedia World History book is one of the core books but you can use this book or find a World History book that covers your unit’s topics.

November Mesoamerica Unit

The Learn & Live Letter provides so many hands-on and play-based learning opportunities in their units we had so much fun exploring. My son was super excited about learning history and doing the activities he ask for these lessons first during our homeschool day. We finished our Mesoamerica unit feeling confident and happy about our progress. When I asked him what he thought he said this was one of the best units we have done in a long time. With him being happy and I know that everything is planned for me and he loves it we are now working on Ancient China and Medival Level 3 from The Learn & Live Letter. We purchased a year’s subscription and we are both loving it.

Ancient + Medieval China

The Learn & Live Letter is hassle-free learning we were over all the traditional history lessons. We are doing what we love following our interest and back to enjoying our homeschool day.

Ancient + Medieval China

I highly recommend The Learn & Live Letter you will not be disappointed. It was such a sigh of relief to plan something he will both truly enjoy. Each unit is packed with much you can do and not feel overwhelmed. The Learn & Live Letter has excellent customer service and a wondering FAQ on their website. It is always great when homeschool moms create something that really puts the kids first, Bravo Ladies! For my followers, The Learn & Live Letter has provided my readers 10% off any year subscription, be sure to use my promo code DESHAUN10 at checkout.

Until the Next Time,

Mom!

Ancient + Medieval China

Learn and Live Letter Social Media

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3rd Grade Curriculum, 4th Grade, 5th Grade, Art, Critical Thinking and Logic, Curriculum, Education, Family, Geography, History, Homeschool, Language Arts, Math, mindfulness, Reviews, S.T.E.A.M

Know Yourself Adventure Series and Dr. Bonyfide Review!

Complimentary product received from Know Yourself.

I love putting together unit studies, it is just something about gathering all the materials that just makes homeschooling so much fun. My son enjoys our unit studies and he learns so much, but we all know putting together unit studies requires a lot of time and research. Science unit studies are our favorite but it requires a lot of books and external resources. This year I wanted to finally really tackle a solid unit on the human body so while I was researching over the summer I came across the Know Yourself Systems of the Body Adventure Series and that’s when then the fun began.

After browsing the Know Yourself website I realized, that I actually owned one of their Dr. Bonyfide books, but then it happened I previewed the Systems of the Body Adventure Series Book 1 Five Sense and it was a done deal I had to have the entire bundle. I purchased the digital version of the bundle and I was confident I found the answer to my human body unit with just a click of the mouse.

About Know Yourself

The company was created in 2013 by a mom with two girls, she wanted to teach her daughters about the human body and anatomy but have fun doing it. Nancy Howe and her team have created an award-winning books series and have partnered with many companies such as Timberdoodle, Rainbow Resources, and Christian Book just to name a few. If you noticed all 3 of those companies are top-tier and respected homeschool merchants so you know these books have to be quality.

Inspire children to be grounded in the awesomeness of their own self-worth and equip them to make healthy decisions about their minds and bodies. Through a deep sense of self, children are able to better relate to others and contribute to a society with more compassion, love and respect.

Know Yourself

Know Yourself is built on 3 principles as listed on their website:

Self-literacy: A journey to a better self through knowledge of the body and mind that ultimately results in happier, healthier, and less fearful SUPER-AWESOME human beings.

Self-worth: Knowing that your value on this Earth is as great as any other human being on this Earth.

Self-advocacy: Find your voice. Ask questions and speak your truth.

Representation: Acknowledge and represent the diversity of the community that we live in and build appreciation for various human intelligence and learning styles.

The company is committed to providing solid foundations while identifying the need to be inclusive and include all diverse characters so your child will see themselves as they learn.

Dr. Bonyfide Series

Now that you know a little about the company let’s talk about the first set of books f Dr. Bonyfide. There are 4 workbooks in the Dr. Bonyfide :

  • Bones of the Hand, Arm, and Shoulder: Book 1
  • Bones of the Foot, Leg, and Pelvis: Book 2
  • Bones of the Rib Cage and Spine: Book 3
  • Bones of the Head, Face, and Neck: Book 4

In each book, students will explore the human skeletal system using 3D x-ray glasses, puzzles, activities, and readings. All of the books are interactive and feature Dr. Bonyfide and his friends. The Dr. Bonyfide series provide students with real pictures and the anatomically correct names for the skeletal system and provides fun ways to help the students remember the names of the body parts. Just to give you the heads up all the friends your kids will meet in the Dr. Bonyfide series you will see them again in the Systems of the Body Adventure Series.

Systems of the Body Adventure Series

If your student loves graphic novels they are going to love the Systems of the Body Adventure Series. There are 12 workbooks in this fabulous series and your students will meet the Loops Crew. Each one of these books includes a graphic novel storyline complete with a ton of activities and takes you and your student on a worldwide adventure to learn about the body systems.

The Systems of the Body Adventure Series is a multi-subject workbook, students will learn about art, culture, geography, music, history, food, growth mindset, and much more. Systems of the Body Adventure Series books are:

Our Review

We love both series of workbooks, when the company reached out to partner I was thrilled my son was super thrilled we would receive a complete set. Know Yourself combines my son’s 2 favorite things graphic novels and science therefore he is hooked. I literally have to hide the books from him because he will read them all. The company sent us the last 4 books just in time for this review and he saw book 10 has the Loops Crew traveling to Tenochtitlan he grabbed and ran with it. So I am guessing that this is the book we are doing for this month along with our Mesoamerica unit study.

In the month of October, we decided to Adventure 2: The Skeletal System (Russia), talk about a breath of fresh air. The workbook has everything we need for a complete unit study. I just needed to check the supply list at the beginning of the book and we were ready. The great thing about the Systems of the Body Adventure Series books they are broken into 4 parts, each part tells you exactly what the student will be learning and the estimated time for each part. In all honesty, there is NO WAY you can get through an entire book in 1 month there is way too much information to cover. You want your kids to enjoy what they are learning and take their time. My recommendation is to do 2 parts a month and spend your time immersed in the geography culture of the book. The recipes included are easy to follow and require limited adult supervision. The book also includes the answer key and review section.

Dr. Bonyfide and Systems of the Body Adventure Series gives you everything you need for a human body and anatomy system unit study. The books are for children ages 8 years and up and can be done independently. I personally really like the books and I really want to be a part of the learning alongside him because I am the first to admit that I don’t know a lot of detail about the human body systems.

The books have cut back on my human unit study planning by 95% and it also included things I would have never included in my own study. You can purchase the books individually or by bundle. The Systems of the Body Adventure Series is available as a digital download and you can use them on a device. Reasonable price, great customer service, and fast free shipping. To save on your purchase be sure to include our referral code: DESHAUN .

I highly recommend you check out both Dr. Bonyfide and Systems of the Body Adventure Series, if you would like to see a complete walkthrough of the books check out our Little Learner and Mom Instagram.

Until the Next Time

Mom & J

3rd Grade Curriculum, 4th Grade, 5th Grade, Homeschool, Read Alouds, Reviews, S.T.E.A.M, Science

BookShark Level D Science Homeschool Curriculum Review!!

Complimentary product received from BookShark in exchange for my honest review.

When you have a science-loving kid, finding the right science curriculum can be a daunting task. When my son was in 2nd grade, he breezed right through an entire science curriculum in eight weeks. For 3rd grade, we decided to forgo another box curriculum and chose to use a variety of supplemental resources to build our own science curriculum. This year things changed. My son requested an engaging and challenging science curriculum that was:

  • Hands – on
  • Experiments he could do independently.
  • Interesting and fun!

With so many requests I knew I had to find the best curriculum that would work for him and myself because I had my own set of requirements.

  • Literature-based
  • Easy lesson planning
  • Hands-on
  • Low prep

I looked around and then I came across BookShark Science Level D and I was blown away by what I read and saw in the package. I had heard of BookShark, but I didn’t know a lot about the company until I started researching the science.

Who is BookShark ?

BookShark is a literature-based multi-subject homeschool curriculum company. Their curriculum is secular and they follow all the state standards. Their leveled curriculum covers a three-year age span. With the 3 years, age-span families can find it helpful that they can use the same curriculum for all their students within those ages.

BookShark Science Level D ages 8-11

BookShark Science Level D

BookShark Science is a literature-based science that uses engaging and recent book resources to spark the love of science in budding scientists. BookShark Science follows the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS). What makes the BookShark homeschool science curriculum unique is the company gives you everything you need in one package. Unlike many homeschool science curricula, BookShark Science is a secular science curriculum. I know what you are thinking, not another box curriculum with a ton of books and materials that need a lot of prepping.

BookShark’s Science curriculum combines a hands-on and literature based approach that is engaging and fun! Students will focus on three to four topics per year and gain in-depth knowledge of subjects including Geology, Meteorology, Physics, Biology, Animals, Electricity, Human Anatomy, Chemistry, Astronomy and more!

BookShark

BookShark Science Level D is for ages 8-11 so this will work well if you have more than one student that fits in that age range and you can do the lessons family style. You will receive:

  • Instructors Guide
  • Classic BookShark D-binder
  • 10 Literature- Based Books
  • Experiment book and kit

Prepping

You will find prepping your BookShark Science Level D requires minimal prepping. The instructor guide includes 36 weekly student activities sheets and schedules, you will need to purchase another set of student activities sheets if you are working with more than one student. The instructor guide is easy to read and follow.

Bookshark Science understand kids , because they dont repeat the same kind of lesson they put a different spin on things!

Jaidyn

BookShark Science recommends that you work with a working binder. The working binder is for your daily use of the lessons. It is suggested that you pull four weeks of student activity sheets and place them in the binder. When I pull the activity sheets I also pull the experiment recording sheets that are printed on sturdy card stock and experiment materials from the kit.

Let’s talk about storage. I keep the BookShark D-binder and books in a cube storage unit and the experiment kit in a latchmate box, but you could keep the items in the sturdy box the materials come in! I store all of these in a cube on our shelf, and his working binder is on our homeschool cart along with the books for that week’s BookShark Level D.

Lessons

BookShark Science Level D works on a 4 days a week schedule. The fourth day is for experiments, the curriculum gives you the flexibility to work at your own pace. The 5th is suggested for field trips, exploring that week’s topic further, or just a day off. On our 5th day, we play games and find extension activities on that week’s topic.

I like the Bookshark Science because it has topics that actually interest me and I can do the lesson on my own!

Jaidyn
Week 7 Coral Reef

The schedule tells you what book you are reading, pages, and what questions from the activity sheet exercise for that day. The schedule also tells you what materials you need for the experiment kit and what you need to prepare for the next week. You will also find vocabulary words on the schedule – don’t skip over this part because these words show up in the reading. I decided to have my son keep a science notebook, in his notebook are the vocabulary words and anything he found of interest from that week’s lesson.

The Experiments

The experiment kit is probably one of my favorite items in BookShark Science Level D  because of the convenience.  When we were winging it, I was always scrambling to purchase something at the last minute or skipping the experiments altogether because the materials were hard to find. . Now I am able to just pull the needed materials out of the kit, and my son can start his experiments. The kit is so well labeled, that even my son can pull the necessary materials by himself. EThe BookShark Science Level D experiment book has easy-to-follow instructions with illustrations. You know how you may do experiments with your kids and you’re not 100% sure of the “Why”? BookShark Science Level D has you covered with objectives, questions, and conclusions. Students will encounter projects that require them to use all of their five senses, engineering, art skills, logic, and critical thinking skills.

Sunday lesson planning prepping!

Currently,  we are moving into Week 9 – Sea Animals; during the first 7 weeks, we learned about food chains, animal adaptations, wolves ecosystems, animal adaptations, living things, characteristics of animals, ocean, and coral reefs. Can you believe we covered all of these topics in-depth and it has only been 7 weeks?! BookShark Science Level D also allows you to go down rabbit holes that have

BookShark makes science interesting and fun!

Jaidyn
Wolves drawings

Virtual Access and Planning!

I am using the virtual access for BookShark Science Level D to help keep us organized. The virtual access is new for this school year. The virtual access seat is available at an additional low cost. Virtual Access gives you and your student the ability to have virtual access to BookShark Science Level D in a virtual space. Be sure to check out my review of BookShark Science Level D with Virtual Access.

Last Remarks

During October, we took a break off from homeschooling for 2 weeks, but he insisted on doing science. BookShark Science Level D has found a place in our home and we look forward to finishing up Level D and next year starting Level E. My son was so impressed he asked me are all of their subjects this much fun and if so can we get those also? With all the planning done for me including the books, experiment supplies, student activity sheets included, I can spend the time I would spend agonizing over what to do for science, enjoying our weekend as a family.

My favorite book is Bringing Back the Wolves! Who knew that wolves had such a impact on the ecosystem!

Jaidyn

At the time of the review, the cost of BookShark Science Level D is $250.94 plus tax and shipping. The virtual access is an add-on for $50. I find the cost of BookShark Science Level D very reasonable for 36 weeks of lesson plans, activity sheets, science kits, and books. The cost breaks down to $6.97 a week. If you are looking to try out a lesson the company offers a 3- week sample lesson on their website. BookShark offers generous freebies on their website such as the new Volcano Unit. The company has great customer service. Support team, and you can request a catalog.

Until the Next Time,

Mom and J

2nd Grade Curriculum, 3rd Grade Curriculum, 4th Grade, 5th Grade, Curriculum, Education, Homeschool, S.T.E.A.M, Science

Mad Science Loop Lab: Gross Science Box Review!

Complimentary product received through Melanated Gold Review Squad!

We received the Gross Science Mad Science Loop Lab box to review and my son really enjoyed the experiments.

Our mission is to inspire children through science, sparking lifelong imagination and curiosity.

Loop Lab

Inside the box we recieved:

  • beaker, flask, and funnel (reusable)
  • corn starch, small bottle of peroxide, liquid glue
  • wooden stirrer, mesh material
  • balloon, rubberband, yeast
  • gloves
  • instruction book
  • lab coat

The kit came with a complete guide book that walked my student through all of the experiments, written instructions for measuring, and illustrations for every step. Upon first opening, the box my son first guess looking that the materials he said we are going to be making oobleck. He was seriously surprised when he got into the guidebook and saw all 3 experiments.

The Gross Science is box 1 in the series of the current 6 boxes now available for ages 8+. The experiments are quick and easy to follow, and my son was able to do them on his own. I check all the experiments beforehand to see if he needed any extra supplies, the only thing I had to add was zip lock bag, dish liquid, water, bowl, an egg, and a bin to catch any mess.

Inside the experiment books, students will find the safety steps, mess factors, and what they need. Each experiment also includes a think green, safe disposals, and clean-up checklist. At the end of the experiments you will find the How does it work description along with vocabulary. You will also notice the experiments encourage the kids to observe and then get messy. In the back of the book, you will also see the vocabulary words again along with their definitions, I had my son copy these in his science notebook and write down a little about the experiment. There is also a hidden objects search for kids to search the Gross Science Mad Science Loop Lab box and a Certificate of Awesomeness.

Foaming Fountain Experiment #1

Gross Science Mad Science Loop Lab box is a fun way to bring a little STEM into your home, they make great boxes for rainy days or if you are needing to add a little more hands-on science into your homeschool. Mad Science Loop Lab boxes are available to purchase on monthly, 3 months, and 6-month subscriptions. The cost starts at $32.99 plus $4.99 for shipping. I would love to try out the other 5 boxes, my son enjoyed doing the Gross Science box.

Be sure to check the other review of Gross Science Mad Science Loop Lab box by clicking the banner below.

3rd Grade Curriculum, 4th Grade, 5th Grade, 6th Grade, Art, Critical Thinking and Logic, Education, Family, Homeschool, mindfulness, Morning Basket, Read Alouds, Reviews, S.T.E.A.M, Writing

Owl Crate Jr: October Box Review!

Complimentary product received from Owl Crate!

We received the October box from Owl Crate Jr if you aren’t familiar with the Owl Crate Jr is a monthly box subscription for middle-grade readers ages 8-12 years. Each box is carefully crafted with a customized book cover sleeve just for Owl Crate Jr subscribers.

Owl Crate Jr October 2021

October’s Owl Crate Jr box theme is the Science is Magic. The book of the month is a signed copy of Amira & Hamza The War to Save the Worlds by Samira Ahmed. Inside this wonderful magical box includes hands-on activities for your reader related to the monthly theme.

On the day of a rare super blue blood moon eclipse, twelve-year-old Amira and her little brother, Hamza, can’t stop their bickering while attending a special exhibit on medieval Islamic astronomy. While stargazer Amira is wowed by the amazing gadgets, a bored Hamza wanders off, stumbling across the mesmerizing and forbidden Box of the Moon. Amira can only watch in horror as Hamza grabs the defunct box and it springs to life, setting off a series of events that could shatter their world—literally.

Amazon

Books Goodies

  • Ooze Labs test tube kit from Thames & Kosmos
  • “The Wild Robot” inspired book accessory designed by @shaferbrown
  • His Dark Materials Compass Enamel Pin
  • The Magic School Bus lanyard
  • Science is Magic Monthly Magazine (inlcudes a science exiperiment)
  • Science is Magic monthly collectible sticker
  • Bookplate with letter from the author to your Owl Crate Jr Reader
  • Wrinkle in Time Umbrella

The monthly magazine includes an October box photo challenge, Owl Crate Jr readers can perform 6 challenges in chances they can win 1 of 6 free boxes. They can upload the pictures to their parent’s Instagram accounts and tag @owlcratejr.

Overall Thoughts

We were sent two Owl Crate Jr boxes. The company sent us the January 2021 box that theme was Inner Magic and the book of the month was Amari and the Night Brothers, which we happen to be in the midst of finishing up. The January box encourages healthy self-image-building activities.

Owl Crate Jr box subscriptions are a good way to make reading magical. The themes we received were beautifully crafted with lots of learning opportunities. I also looked over the previous month’s books and discovered they have a diverse collection of book titles each month which is gladly appreciated. However, their social media pages don’t reflect that same diversity of children and families. Owl Crate Jr’s website is inviting and has a community blog for Owl Crate Jr and Owlcrate 14+. You can compare boxes on their website to see which box best works for your reader. I did poke around on the Owl Crate Jr shop I love all the extra book goodies they have. I am going to purchase a few of their teas for our monthly tea and chat times.

One of the things I find unique about Owl Crate Jr is its attention to detail. The Owl Crate Jr boxes make reading an adventure and not just words on pages. If you have a reluctant reader aged 8-12 Owl Crate Jr box is perfect for them. You use the monthly books as read-aloud or an independent read, we happened to be reading the Amari and the Night Brothers book already when the October Owl Crate Jr and my son are completely engulfed in this book and we will be moving on to the Amira & Hamza The War to Save the Worlds book soon. My son saw the “Dragons” in next month’s Owl Crate Jr box he is begging me to get him the November box also! Of course, I said yes because I am thrilled he wants to keep reading more novels.

Owl Crate Jr boxes are $29.99 a month, the company offers several different subscriptions option. The Owl Crate Jr box is for middle-grade readers ages 8-12 years. The boxes ship between the 15th and 20th of the month. You can purchase past Owl Crate Jr boxes in the shop. I have signed me little up for a subscription after receiving these 2 boxes complimentary so be on the lookout for updates on our instagram.

Until the Next Time,

Mom and J

Social Media

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/OwlCrate/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/owlcrate/

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/37437502-korrina-owlcrate

4th Grade, 5th Grade, 6th Grade, 7th Grade, Critical Thinking and Logic, Curriculum, Education, Homeschool, Reviews, S.T.E.A.M

Genius Games : Periodic: A Game of The Elements Review !

Complimentary product received through the Melanated Gold Review Squad, in exchange for my honest review.

Looking for a fun game that teaches you and your kids the periodic table? I was sent the Periodic: Game of The Elements to review from Genius Games. As a science-loving family and we love any opportunity to game school.

The Periodic: Game of The Elements is a great way to introduce the periodic table to your budding chemist. My son has a little knowledge of the elements but not much and he has recently shown interest in learning them. Periodic: Game of The Elements is for students ages 10+ , 2-5 players, and gameplay is 40-60 mins. The game board is sturdy and the elements are in bright colors. Players will move around the board using 1 of the 5 Erlenmeyer Flask as they research and learn the elements and their atomic numbers.

The goal of the game is to move along the periodic table and collect elements in order to score goal cards. Periodic: Game of The Elements is a strategic game and you have to plan your moves so you can complete goal cards for points. The game has two game movements one is moving your flask around the table and the second movement is moving your microscope around the board and completing your secret agenda cards for extra points. Players also have to decide on how to spend or gain energy to activate trends. The person with the most points wins the game. Periodic: Game of The Elements comes with 172 small pieces, 1 game board, and a rule book.

I really like this game for teaching the elements and their atomic mass. The game offers a great lesson in teaching students about protons and neutrons. The goal cards have different combinations of elements on them and what they become when combined. on the back of the Periodic: Game of The Elements box, you will find a QR scan that makes it easy to retrieve the rules of the game and video of game play.

Periodic: Game of The Elements does has had a lot of moveable parts and does require a certain level of mental play, and logic skills. This game is defiantly for older kiddos I highly recommend it for kids ages 12+. There are a lot of rules to remember and follow to be successful at the game. My son did find it a little confusing as we played the game but, I decided to scale the game back a little for him. We only did the primary movements of the game. Keep in mind my son is just 1 month shy of being 9 years old and he has a strong background in science. He really likes the game board, learning the table as well looking over the goal cards, and researching. We just tweaked the game little for him, I also had a little trouble following the gameplay rules, but the video was very helpful.

I would recommend Periodic: Game of The Elements from Genius Games for students 10+. I wouldn’t recommend to children younger than 9 years. We did enjoy the game and I am sure we will continue to grow into it over the years. At the time of this review the cost of Periodic: Game of The Elements is $39.99 plus taxes and shipping.

Be sure to check out the other Melanated Gold Review Squad reviews by clicking the banner below.

Social Media Sites

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/GotGeniusGames

Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/gotgeniusgames/

Twitter – https://twitter.com/GotGeniusGames/

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1st Grade, 2nd Grade Curriculum, Curriculum, Education, Math, S.T.E.A.M

LeapFrog® LeapFrog Academy® Review

Disclaimer: I received this product free through the Homeschool Review Crew.

When talking with parents about early math and literacy there is only one name that stands out above the rest and that is LeapFrog® . LeapFrog® products has a full range of educational and fun games, workbooks, dvd, flash cards, and toys. We have had so many of them and they were well loved by myself and my son. We were no stranger to LeapFrog Academy® and so when the crew was offered to review a 1 year subscription I was honored to be able to write about LeapFrog Academy® because even though my son is a rising 4th grader he was more than happy to revisit his friend Leap and all his friends.

LeapFrog Academy® is online and digital platform for children ages 3-6 years, students can play it on any device and WI-fi isn’t not required. Playing without WiFi will require students or parents to save their favorite activities to their favorites. LeapFrog Academy® is interactive program the company has designed a core curriculum that covers:

  • Reading & Writing
  • Math
  • Science/ The World
  • Problem Solving
  • Growth Mindset/ Health
  • Creativity
  • STEAM

Students will embark on a learning path that will help early learners learn phonics, math skills and science and so much more. With the combination of videos, puzzles, songs , and books your students will be excited to travel the bath and earn rewards and certificates along the way to keep them encourage to keep going. If students are familiar with the LeapFrog® characters they will see all their familiar faces and meet some new ones. One my sons favorite games series is the Banzani Beans. When he was walking through the LeapFrog Academy for me he was super excited to see all the updates to LeapFrog Academy since he last played a few years back.

LeapFrog Academy also goes the extra mile suggest activities for students in the My Learning Lab to give them extra practice. The separate parent dashboard makes it easy for you to track your students progress and make adjustments if you need. When you access LeapFrog Academy® from a computer parents can print printable to go along with the lessons. LeapFrog Academy® recommends students login 3 times a week to see the best progress.

LeapFrog Academy has over 2,000 learning activities and it delivers that same award winning quality that is trusted be parents and educators for years. The only thing my son said he wish it had was games for older kiddos. At the time of this review the company has 3 affordable plans 7.99 per month; $24.99 for 6 months; $39.99 for 12 months. “To help parents enhance learning at home, LeapFrog® is offering an extended free trial, from one month to two months, as well as reducing the cost of 6-month and 12-month plans to $24.99 and $39.99”


LeapFrog Academy from LeapFrog® is a hit in our home and I will continue to use it with my younger students. I highly recommend you try it out and also read the other glowing reviews of the Crew members by clicking the banner below.

Until the Next,

Mom and J

Critical Thinking and Logic, Education, S.T.E.A.M, Science

Brain Blox Wooden Buildings Plank Review!

My son loves to build things with his hands and the Brain Blox Wooden Building Planks Are perfect for him. I love the Brain Blox Wooden Building Planks because they offer open ended play opportunities. The wonderful people at Brain Blox was so gracious to send the Crew a set of the 200 ct Brain Blox Wooden Building Planks .

The planks are smooth and well crafted and I love the wood smell. They are non toxic and made from natural wood. The planks have no stains and dyes they are really beautiful building planks. Kids and play with them indoors or outdoors.

My son loved them because he was able to mix them in with his other toys and let his imagination run wild. He built towers, mazes, marble runs, mazes and a ton of his own creations. Being a STEAM kid he was able to really apply his engineering skills using the planks.

We used the Brain Blox Wooden Building Planks apart of our math lessons with place value and as manipulative for working on multiplication. We used them in our science lesson to study force and motion by building a chain reaction experiment. He also took them out while we were studying the digestive system so he could use them as a model on how food travels through the digestive track. This week we using them to build the Forbidden City in China along side our unit study!

We received the 200 piece kit but the company also has 100 and 300 piece kits. When you go on the companies website they offer free building model ideas. The website is as equally as wonderful as the planks themselves. I found myself going to the website to get build ideas for my son and learning how I could improve his spatial intelligence. There is a wonderful split level level curriculum the the resource section for those early little stem learners.

Brain Blox Wooden Building Planks start at $39.99 for the 100 Ct and 200 and 300 ct price range for $59.99-$79.99. The Brain Blox website currently has a sale going so you can save some money on these great planks. You can purchase them directly from the merchant or Amazon . These planks will make a great holiday present and did I mention they come with this fabulous sturdy storage bag. We definitely love these and they have replaced our current wooden blocks. I highly recommend you grab a set of these for endless amounts of fun.

Be sure to check out the rest of the Crews Brain Blox Wooden Building Planks reviews by clicking the banner below.

Until the Next Time,

Mom and J

Social Media Links:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/mybrainblox
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/brainblox
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Education, Homeschool, Reviews, S.T.E.A.M

Kids Night In Box Mission Space Review

If you are one of our Little Learner and Mom Instagram followers you know I love pairing our curriculum with unit studies and hands on learning. We recently partnered with Kids Night in Box and we had the pleasure of working through their Mission Space Box. Kids Night in Box is a monthly subscription box service that features an array of monthly themed based activities. Previous themes include finances, manners, gratitude, world community and many more learning experiences. The boxes are meant to be enjoyed as a family and are easy to use. This isn’t your typical box there are several learning activities in each box. The Mission Space box had 6 fun filled space mission and 2 wonderful recipes for us to enjoy.

The Mission Space box was a welcome box for the month of March. We started a new grammar curriculum that paired perfectly with this box. What I really liked is that I was able to extend out grammar lesson with a fun activity from the Kids Night in Box. One day we made the Hot Rockets for lunch and on another day we made the Galaxy Strawberries for dessert after dinner. The reader that is included was a great addition to our bedtime reading time and the reading comprehension questions that are carefully laid out in the training manual by grade level were perfect. One of the missions the children created Rocket Art Work and there is an educational art link provided for your child to watch a step by step easy to follow tutorial. The space themed yoga cards provided were an perfect ad in to our mindfulness time in the morning. My son was super excited about tasting the freeze dried ice cream sandwich this activity sparked all kinds of questions and learning opportunities. I was equally impressed that one the missions was S.T.E.M (science, technology, engineering, math) related.

One of things I really enjoyed is that I didn’t have to purchase any outside supplies. Every thing needed was inside the box. At the end of all 6 mission my son was able to complete his space passport and their was certificate of completion . These boxes are great for homeschooling, family night and extended learning. In this box there was 6 missions and 2 optional recipes so in all you receive 8 activities. The company also included suggestions to continue your learning in the training guide.

Kids Night in Box comes with several different subscription options you can pick which one best fits your family. The company also has faith based boxes available. Orders for the upcoming April box need to be submitted by April 13th 8pm E.T. All boxes will be shipped April 16th-21st. The April box theme is Reduce, Reuse and Recycle we are looking forward to this new box.

If you are looking for something new to add to your homeschool or activities for the upcoming summer days to help prevent that summer learning slide, try out Kids Night in Box .

Be sure to check out the unboxing video on Little Learner and Mom Youtube channel.

Until Next Time,

Mom


Critical Thinking and Logic, Education, Homeschool, Osmos, S.T.E.A.M

Detective Agency Review from Play Osmo’s

We have been huge Osmo’s fans since the launched in 2013. We are pretty strict around here in regards to screen time and we are selective about what he is allowed to watch and play.

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On October 25th Osmo launched a new game Detective Agency.  Osmo’s products never disappoint…the moment he saw the box was from Play Osmo’s he was jumping up and down with excitement. We are members of the Osmo’s Social Club and the anticipation of the new Detective Agency has been a huge topic in our household. The new game is for ages 5 and up, I can also see a younger sibling maybe 4 years old teaming up with a parent or sibling to play. In true Osmo tradition the new Detective Agency challenges your students to learn geography, culture and to use their critical thinking skills.

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The new game comes in with easy storage case with 5 maps and interactive magnifying glass for your little sleuths to use on their adventures. You will need to have a Osmo Stand in order to play, as well as download the app from iTunes! You can play from your iPhone, iPad and if you own the newly released Kindle Fire Osmo Genius Kit. Your students will be engaged as soon as they load up the game. Children will be asked to solve different cases all over the world. The maps are vibrant and easy to read but challenging, children will be exposed to various cultural aspects of each country.  Kids meet some new Osmo characters along the way and can easily follow the story mode on their own!

I really like this new system especially for the geography aspect, we found ourselves pulling the maps out just to look at them while we were doing our China history lesson. The game is very interactive which is great because it removes the thinking that geography is boring. This is a great new resource for teaching geography Osmos did a great job selecting a country to represent of 6 continents, there is also a world map and Osmo Town.  Overall I give the new system a thumbs up as holiday gift and additional resource for your home school or home for learning geography.

So what does my son have to say about the new Osmos Detective Agency, ….he loves Brazil and wants to go there!  He likes capturing the bad guys and he wants to play all day.

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The Detective Agency retails for $39, don’t forget you need the stand in order to play. For those who have Kindle Fire tablets you can purchase the Osmos Genius Kit which comes with the Kindle Fire Stand and you can purchase the Detective Agency kit  and then download the app from the Amazon Store.  For IOS user download from iTunes for free the name in the App Store is Osmo Detective Agency. If you are interested in checking out our youtube review click here.