Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Operation Finale Releases in Theaters Today


Have you heard of Operation Finale?  It releases in theaters today, August 29th.  Operation Finale brings to life one of the most daring covert operations in modern history.  This film stars Sir Ben Kingsley and Oscar Isaac.  The film captures the ingenious and brilliantly executed mission to capture Adolf Eichmann, one of the chief architects of the Holocaust.  Fifteen years after the end of World War II, acting on irrefutable evidence, a top-secret team of Israeli agents travel to Argentina where Eichmann has been in hiding together with his family under an alias Ricardo Klement and execute an extremely dangerous abduction.  In attempting to sneak him out of Argentina to stand trial in Israel while being pursued by the country's right-wind forces, agent Peter Malkin is forced to engage Eichmann in an intense and gripping game of cat-and-mouse with life-and-death stakes.  Check out the trailer below and let me know what you think.

Sunday, August 26, 2018

D's 1st Gymnastics Meet

 D about to head to her first gymnastics meet!

Team Jacket

D had her first ever gymnastics meet yesterday.  I'm so proud of this girl!  When we moved in June, it was best for D to switch gyms.  We were so happy when she was offered a spot on the team at her new gym.  She started learning the routines right away (most girls have been learning them since January).  And 2 months later, D competed in her first meet.  I'm so proud of how well she did.  She cam in 5th overall and had a great time.  Keep up the good work D!

 5th Overall

D with her 1st Medal!

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Newly Released Track for "Wonderful Life" by Zendaya

SMALLFOOT releases nationwide September 28th!

I just wanted to share with you Zendaya's new release "Wonderful Life" from the upcoming movie SMALLFOOT.

Check out the video for "Wonderful Life" by Zendaya below and let me know what you think.

You can also stream the "Wonderful Life" Track here.

An adventure for all ages, with original music and an all-star cast, "SMALLFOOT" turns the Bigfoot legend upside down when a bright young Yeti finds something he thought didn't exist - a human.  News of this "smallfoot" throws the simple Yeti community into an uproar over what else might be out there in the big world beyond their snowy village, in an all new story about friendship, courage and the joy of discovery.

Timberdoodle's 2018 9th Grade Elite Curriculum Kit Unboxing

I am super excited about this upcoming school year for A!  We went back and forth on a couple of different options and we decided to homeschool her for her 9th grade year using Timberdoodle's Elite Curriculum Kit.  This will be my first curriculum kit to complete with Timberdoodle and it looks pretty fantastic.  I wanted to walk you through our kit.
{Note:  We will be using this curriculum this school year 2018-2019 so we haven't used these items yet.  This is an introduction, not a review.}

Even Stevie wanted in on the unboxing fun!

Our Timberdoodle Shelf

The Curriculum guide.

This guide is super thin.  It walks you through how many assignments from each subject you need to complete per week in order to make it through a year of school.  I like that it keeps it simple!

Like most 9th graders we will be studying Biology.  This is the first time I have heard of Friendly Biology.  It was written by a homeschooling husband and wife team.  I look forward to exploring these books.  The DVD looks like a great way to teach our whole family Biology.

Friendly Biology and Biology 101 DVD

We will be studying the Renaissance, Reformation, and Growth of Nations with The Mystery of History Vol 3.  I love that this kit includes the all in one companion guide, student activity book and teacher's guide.  I imagine getting a lot of use out of this resource.  Another part of the history portion of this kit is The United States Constitution - A Graphic Adaptation.  This book walks teens through the entire Constitution, pretty cool.

Mystery of History Volume 3

Language Arts
There are several components of Language Arts in this kit.  They include Easy Grammar Grade 9, Editor in Chief Level 3, Implications of Literature Explorer Level, Root Words Level 3 and Writing with Skill Level 2.  The only program I am currently familiar with is Easy Grammar which I like a lot.  A completed the Easy Grammar program in 6th grade.  I'm excited about the combination of these resources.

 Easy Grammar 9th Grade

 Editor in Chief Level 3

 Implications of Literature, Explorer Level

 Word Roots Level 3

Writing with Skill Level 2

This is one area where we might venture from the kit but I haven't completely decided yet.  This kit includes Math-U-See Geometry and an awesome Extreme Dot-to-Dot puzzle book.  We may purchase the online family subscription for Teaching Textbooks for A-D this year and use that.  I haven't personally used the Math-U-See program but I heard it's pretty amazing so we may give it a go.  I'll keep you posted.

Math-U-See Geometry

 Extreme Dot-to-Dot Animals

Thinking Skills
There are two components to the thinking skills category in this kit:  Building Thinking Skills Book 3 Verbal and the Anti-Virus Mutation game.  I think these are fabulous additions for 9th grade and might be a category I wouldn't think of including but very important.

 This Anti-Virus Mutation game looks so fun!

Building Thinking Skills Level 3 Verbal

A will be working through the book How to Draw Almost Everything which has step-by-step instructions and illustration for drawing animals, people, plants, food, buildings, vehicles, and more!

So, so fun!

I love, love that Timberdoodle adds STEM items!  A will learn Office 2013 and 2010, Windows, QuickBooks, Web Design, Photoshop CC and more with Professor Teaches Office Super Set.  With Duinokit Jr. A will have an Arduino-based learning environment, this looks amazing!

 Duinokit Jr

Professor Teaches

Additional Resources and Learning Tools

 Cracking the PSAT

 Student High School Planner

 Mixed by Me Thinking Putty

And there you have it!  I never thought that when I began this homeschooling journey so many years ago that I would be homeschooling the high school years.  However, I'm just as excited to begin this year as I was so many years ago.  I'm excited about the curriculum and I'm excited about growing with A throughout this year.  Stay tuned to hear more about our journey through 9th grade.  Check out Timberdoodle's 9th Grade Elite Curriculum kit for yourself!
{Another thing worth noting - Timberdoodle offers standard (faith-based) kits as well as non-religious kits.  They also offer 3 kit options - basic, complete, and elite.  Our kit is their standard Elite 9th grade curriculum kit.}

Disclosure:  Huge shout out to Timberdoodle for selecting me as a Timberdoodle Blogger.  Timberdoodle sent my family the 9th Grade Elite Curriculum Kit for a discounted price in exchange for our honest review.  All opinions are my own.

Thursday, August 16, 2018

ARTK12 American Art History Volume 1 Review

Remember my review on Kristin J Draeger's Draw The USA?  Did  you know that Kristin J Draeger has a whole American Art History Curriculum?  The ARTK12 art history curriculum is truly art history disguised as fun!  There are three parts to each volume:  American Art History, American Art Bingo and Drawing American Art.  And there are three separate volumes.  Each volume set is equivalent to one semester.  I had the privilege to review the complete Volume 1 of this curriculum.  It is designed to be used once a week for 16 weeks.  Each week's lesson is approximately 2 hours of teaching and there is very little prep.  Not only will it work well at home but this program would also be a great fit for a homeschool coop class as well.  You could adapt it as needed to suit your time allotment.  Just a thought.

It's recommended that each week you read the chapter in American Art History, play the bingo game, and draw the piece of art.  That's it!  Or you can play the bingo game, read the chapter, and draw the piece of art - that's what we did.  This program is designed for grades 3rd-8th.  I did the majority of this curriculum with A (14), B (12), C (11), and D (8); however, E (6) and F (4) participated in some and loved it!  E and F joined in on some of the bingo games.  E was also able to complete several pieces of art (although they were more challenging for her).  I just printed out extra templates and had them available for her and let her complete as many as she wanted - one of the beauties of homeschooling a large family.

American Art Bingo Volume 1

I love that this curriculum is put together for you.  There is very little prep.  I'm so picky about taking care of my books and curriculum I wanted to preserve it as best as possible.  So, I took apart my American Art Bingo book so that I could laminate the bingo cards and pieces of art for the bingo game.  This way, we can play it over and over again with little wear.  You can also use the cards as is or put them in slip covers.

 Here you can see a view of inside the book.

 And here are our laminated bingo cards!

There are 10 double sided bingo cards so there are 20 total varieties but only 10 can be used at one time.  And there are 32 image cards, these are the paintings and artifacts that you will be teaching your children about using this curriculum.  Every week your children will hear the information about the cards and by the end of the semester they will be able to identify the title and creator of the 32 works of art.  This review every week is invaluable.  I love that my kids have fun while inadvertently memorizing each piece.  You will need to find something to use as bingo markers: pennies, rocks, goldfish, etc.

Playing bingo!

 Here are C and D playing bingo.  We used M&Ms this time.

B with a bingo.

Here is the 1st image in the set.

And here is the last image in this set, image 32.

American Art History

Each week after we played the bingo game, we read a chapter in the American Art History book.  This book is arranged chronologically into 16 chapters and introduces 2 pieces of art each week.  This volume contains prehistoric art, mound builder art, John White, Benjamin West, and Gilbert Stuart just to name a few.  We chose to read the chapters aloud as a family but they can be read individually as well.  You can also have your students take turns reading the articles to each other.  One of the highlights of this curriculum is that it makes your students think - they need to be able to distinguish between reality and facts within the articles and what was added for comic effect.

An example of inside the book

 the next page

Every chapter has forgery games at the end.  Students compare the real work of art to the forgery on the opposite page and try to spot the ten noticeable differences.  You can hold a race and see who can find all ten differences first.  This is a great way for students to develop an eye for detail as the spend time comparing the two images.  There is an answer key in the back of the book.

Example forgery game - Find the ten differences between the original and the forgery

Answer key so you can check to see if you found all ten differences.

 Drawing American Art

After we played the bingo game and read the weekly chapter we drew the piece of art in the Drawing American Art book.  Volume 1 contains instructions and templates for 16 pieces of art.  The purpose of the template for each piece is to give every student a good start on drawing the piece.  It has good reference points for sizing and gives the students a better chance of successfully completing each piece of art.  You can photocopy the templates contained in the back of the book or you can download them from the ARTK12 website.  Only the book will have the lessons and instructions.  I really love the step-by-step instructions.  They contain drawings for each step highlighting each addition in red allowing students to see each pieces of art in minute detail.  This makes it so easy to teach and for the students to accomplish each task eventually leading to a finished piece of art!

Printed templates on cardstock

I printed the templates on white cardstock to give the kids a more durable surface to work with.  Each week your students will need the appropriate template, pencil with eraser, ultra-fine black marker, and colored pencils (you could use markers or crayons if desired).

A, B, and C with templates for drawing Prehistoric Art

Prehistoric Art Piece

Prehistoric Art Template (you can see reference points on both sides)

 Working through instructions

After pencil drawing is complete you trace the drawing in black marker.

B's work after using black marker

 Final step is coloring your work of art.

 A, B, and C's finished works of Prehistoric Art

Mound Builder Piece

Here is an example of one of the direction pages.

Working through instructions

 B's finished piece

 E's finished work (She did everything except the outlining in black marker)

 D's finished Mound Builder Art

Another lesson

 Working on Desert Southwest Art

 A's finished work

 The Art of Paul Revere

The older four kids finished works.

I'm not going to show every weekly drawing but I wanted to show several so you get a better idea of what is included.  The kids loved making their drawings and I think this is truly a highlight of this curriculum.  If you can't tell by now my family is thoroughly enjoying this curriculum and I would highly recommend it.  If you are still planning your homeschooling year or need to add an art or history supplement please consider this one.  The planning is already laid out for you and I have a feeling you will enjoy it as well.

Disclosure:  Thanks so much to ArtK12 for selecting me to review this curriculum for free in exchange for my honest review.  All opinions are my own.