Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Veritas Press Self-Paced Bible REVIEW

I had always wanted to try Veritas Press Self-Paced courses, and we were blessed with a chance to do a review for them a little over a year ago. Mr. B did so well with the course, I knew I had to make these a regular part of our daily homeschool. I went ahead and purchased their Self-Paced History Explorers to 1815, and Mr. B would beg to do his school work every day, so I was so very excited when they allowed me to review their Self-Paced Bible Judges to Kings

Each Self-Paced Bible course features 32 biblical events that are taught through fun games and videos. Judges to Kings covers the period from the book of Judges to Second Kings, and details the time from the early people of Israel to the exile to Babylon. You child will follow along with Levi, Vasko the Frog and Pallu the Badger as they learn about this portion of the Bible. 

The Course includes:
  • Art
  • Music 
  • Geography
  • Chronological events memorized to music
  • Names, Places, and Dates
  • Activities such as projects, worksheets, and tests
  • 32 Bible events

Each lesson has fun and clever videos to capture your child's attention and imagination. Mr. B loves watching them, and he giggles right along! After each video lesson are different activities such as games and quizzes, and then there are interspersed tests that recall what has been learned. Everything is done online. 

Mr. B is quite fond of the colorful graphics, and fun dialogue between the characters. I love how much he is learning, and how much he talks about it afterwards! 

There's a mix of real human characters, along with fun animated characters. 

The course is easy to navigate, and I like how it's laid out in such a way that high functioning kids on the spectrum can see what needs to be completed, and what has already been finished. 

The navigational bars on the left show what has been finished, and gives them the chance to go back and replay lessons as they want. It also shows what is still to come, as does the middle assignment table. 

It's also easy to see what your child's grades are, overall and per assignment. 

Overall, Mr. B loves this and so do it. It is exactly what we've come to expect from Veritas Press and their self-paced courses. We had a great time reviewing Genesis to Joshua last year, and we're both loving Self Paced History Explorers to 1815 and the Self-Paced Bible Judges to Kings. Mr. B sings the memory songs all the time, and has even sang them for church members! He is learning so much, and even talks about what he has learned with the elders and church, who are very much impressed with his overall knowledge on the subjects. He is asked to do one lesson each day, but frequently works ahead and asks to do one or two additional lessons.

There is just enough repetition to really make it all sink in, but not so much that it is boring or frustrating.  He retains what he has learned, and I can tell this program truly does work for him.

From a special needs standpoint, I find this to be perfect for high functioning autism. There's a routine to it, and of course the memory aspect makes ideal. You know when my child asks to do his school work on a WEEKEND  you've found a fantastic program that you have to share with others! I can't even begin to express how much he LOVES Veritas Press Self-Paces courses! He's set to finish both the Judges to Kings and the Explorers to 1815 before the end of this school year, and I hope to be able to have the next Self-Paced Bible ready for him by then, as well as some Ancient History since we've not gone over that era in a while. We both highly recommend this to others!

**We were provided a free subscription to Veritas Press Self-Paced Bible Judges to Kings in exchange for our honest and unbiased review. I was not required to write a positive review, nor was I compensated in any other way. All opinions expressed are my own, or those of my family.**

Wordless Wednesday

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Family Honor Plate REVIEW

The Family Honor Plate and discussion cards is a great tool to use with your family. The plate is a fun, easy craft that your family will cherish for years to come. The cards are a great way to foster positive and meaningful discussions.


The virtues are listed in the center of the plate for mom and dad to use as their anchor, their moral compass to guide them in how they need to show up for and to their children. This is how our children learn what character (Christ's Character) is, what it looks like, what it feels like. Our children are watching us and learning from us.


Look for the good choices and attitude your kids/spouse are making and showing throughout the day. Track it back to the virtues and character it shows.


Turn dinnertime into a celebration when you catch someone making good choices and showing good character and present their meal on the FAMILY HONOR PLATE. This is when you:
· Talk about the choices they made and the virtues and character that it showed (Be specific).
· Talk about how they made everyone involved feel and the impact they had on people and how that is POWERFUL and BEAUTIFUL.

About the cards:

Every question is followed up with "Why?" to take everyone's answers to a deeper more intimate level. That's where the magic is and the real conversation starts. So now when even a simple question such as..."What is your favorite dessert?" for example, rather than someone answering "Apple Pie" and then moving on to the next person, the whole family gets to walk down memory lane because it reminds them of Grandma Smith who always made apple pies with them when they came to visit." Her house always smelled of fresh baked pies and she gave the best hugs when we walked in the door."

Communication is the key to connecting, building and maintaining healthy relationships. When we are raise our children to be confident in their ability to communicate with others and get their point across, situations are less stressful and they have better outcomes.

My thoughts:

This is such a wonderful tool/craft to use with your children and family. My son loved putting his heart into painting this plate with me. Clean up was a breeze when we made an "Oops!" with just a little window cleaner and a soft cloth. We sat together and painted this plate one day when we were both having a very rotten day. You know those days, the ones where you just wish you could crawl under a big pile of pillows and not come out until the next day. So what better day than that to focus on our blessings, and the blessing that is our family.

I love the discussion cards, particularly from a special needs perspective. They are a great way to foster discussion, conversation, and especially social communication. It's so easy to get caught up in the day to day, and not really converse at meal time. It's easy to just watch TV, read a book, or play on an electronic device during dinner. That's something I think everyone needs to minimize! We try to have family time every night, but these cards really help us make the most out of that family time.

“Disclosure (in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255:  “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”):  Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for the giveaway.  Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation.  I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post. Only one entrant per mailing address, per giveaway.  If you have won a prize from our sponsor Propeller /FlyBy Promotions in the last 30 days on the same blog, you are not eligible to win.  Or if you have won the same prize on another blog, you are not eligible to win it again.  Winner is subject to eligibility verification.

Wordless Wednesday

Monday, November 20, 2017

Addison Cooke and the Tomb of the Kahn REVIEW

Hold on to your seats for this fast paced, action packed thrill ride of an adventure read! 

About the Book: 

Addison Cooke is back in his latest laugh-out-loud adventure: ADDISON COOKE AND THE TOMB OF THE KHAN (Philomel; on sale November 14, 2017; 9780399173783; grades 3-7). Complete with a cast of funny, kid-friendly characters reminiscent of The Goonies, and a quest to discover ancient secrets, Addison strikes gold once again in his second adventure: this time a journey through Asia in pursuit of the legendary tomb of Genghis Khan.

Fresh off a victorious treasure hunt and rescue mission in South America, Addison Cooke just cannot seem to avoid rogue bandits, pesky booby traps, and secret treasure troves lined with gold. Such is the life of a junior archaeologist. Just as reliably, as Addison attracts adventure, his aunt and uncle attract kidnappers! This time they find themselves becoming the pawn in a Chinese gang's plan to steal the Khan's most prized possession, his golden whip. When a third player enters the race, a Russian gang intent on nabbing the goods and exacting revenge for what happened with the treasure of the Incas,Addison and his friends find themselves once again caught in the middle, trying to rescue his family and stop the treasure from falling into the wrong hands!

About the Author:

Jonathan W. Stokes ( is a former teacher who is now a Hollywood screenwriter. He has written screenplays on assignment for Warner Brothers, Universal, Fox, Paramount, New Line, and Sony/Columbia. Inspired by a childhood love of The Goonies and Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, Jonathan set out to write his first novel, Addison Cooke and the Treasure of the Incas. Born in Manhattan, he currently resides in Los Angeles, where he can be found showing off his incredible taste in dishware and impressive 96% accuracy with high fives. Follow Jonathan on Twitter @jonathanwstokes.

My Thoughts:

Addison Cooke and the Tomb of the Khan is packed with adventure and awesome! We had never experienced any of the Treasure Hunter series, and so we were very excited to dive in when this got here. This is a good stand alone, and I don't feel my son and I were at a loss at any point not having read the previous work. I would highly recommend you read the previous because if it is anything like The Tomb of the Khan, then it has to be fantastic. The story line is a little out there of course. I mean, I don't know too many school kids who are out fighting off international bandits and booby traps whilst hunting for hidden treasures, but that's what makes this so fantastic. It's full of imagination, wonder, laughter, and excitement.

If you love Indian Jones like shows, then you'll love this. You and your child will be transported to a thrilling adventure around Asia along side Addison and his friends in this fast pace thrill ride of a read! 

**I was provided a free copy in exchange for my honest review. I wasn't required to write a positive review, nor was I compensated in any other way. All opinions expressed are my own or those of my family.**

A Simply BEAUTIFUL Bible

Christmas is the perfect time to gift a loved one a special Bible, and the Illuminated Bible would be a fantastic choice! This ESV translation Bible is simply stunning featuring a dark navy, hardback cover with gold embossing details. The inside features easy to read text font in gold lettering, with stunning artwork throughout. There's also ample space for your own artwork or notes.

The Bible is easy to read and understand, and as far as I have been able to tell all verses match correctly with the KJV. We are strictly a KJV family, but I have been reading this one with no complaints at all so far. 

I love the beautiful artwork. Each hand lettered page is elegantly created, and lovely to look at. I find myself reading even more because of the repeated verse on the page. 

The Illuminated Bible is not only a wonderful Bible to own, but it is a lovely addition to our home. I have received many compliments on its overall look, but as we all know-That's not what is important. What is inside is truly what matters, and I have found nothing to dissuade us from using this Bible in our homeschool and Bible studies. I will be sure to let you know if I do find anything, but so far so good! 

About this Bible

The ESV Illuminated Bible places the full ESV text alongside over 500 elegantly hand-lettered gold ink illustrations by renowned artist Dana Tanamachi. Printed on thick cream-colored paper, the Bible's single-column text setting and wide margins provide generous space for additional notes, prayers, and designs—inviting readers to creatively engage with and reflect on the beauty of God's Word.

• 9-point, Lexicon
• Black letter text
• 2-color printing
• 64 full-page, custom book opener illustrations
• 50 full-page verse illustrations
• 250+ hand-lettered margin verses
• 100+ other illustrations throughout
• Illustrated by Dana Tanamachi, whose work has been featured by Google, The Wall Street Journal, Random House, USPS, and Target
• Thick, cream-colored paper
• Wide margins
• Single-column, paragraph format
• Smyth-sewn binding
• Packaging: Permanent Slipcase
• Dana Tanamachi is an American lettering artist, graphic designer, and illustrator whose exquisite typographic murals ignited the worldwide chalk-lettering trend. She has been commissioned by clients such as Instagram, Target, Google, Time Magazine, Nike, and West Elm. Learn more at



How We Made the ESV Illuminated Bible from Crossway on Vimeo.

Would you like your own Copy? Please "LIKE" Our Facebook page! I plan to choose one random Facebook Fan as a winner on Dec. 3rd!

“Disclosure (in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255:  “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”):  Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for the giveaway.  Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation.  I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post.

Friday, November 17, 2017

Holiday Gift Guide 2017

Can you believe it is nearly Thanksgiving already?! It seems as if 2017 zipped by so fast. I can't believe it is already Christmas gift time! Our tree is up, we're sorting ornaments, and planning dinners. CRAZY, I tell ya! CRAZY! 

Here are a few things topping our Christmas Wish List this year! 

The Pencil Grip tends to always top my list. They have a number of great gifts, and I'll also be featuring them in my Special Needs Gift Guide, as well. 

Mr. B LOVES KwikStix!  These sticks are made up of solid tempera paint, and take just 90 seconds to dry. Mr. B loves them! He likes to sling paint brushes, so I try to avoid paint-but he loves to paint. KwikStix is the best of both worlds! He can paint, and I have no mess to clean up. They come in a variety of colors including metallic and neon. You can also get ThinStix which are just like KwikStix, only thinner! 

Loopeez is a fun fidget toy. Each ring is connected to the other by the blue and green pivots. You can twist them around, and they never bump or get stuck. I prefer this to any fidget spinner as they are less distracting, and help keep Mr. B focused. These would make a GREAT stocking stuffer!

Gyrobi is another great stocking stuffer! These little spinners feature various rings that spin independently of one another. Again, these are much less distracting than a fidget spinner, and accomplish the intended purpose of greater focus and calm. Ours is actually square, and Mr. B takes it everywhere!

2.) Books

I am always a huge fan of books for Christmas. We love to wrap up a book a night for a nice bedtime story each night. Rick Warren's Children books are a great addition to this. I'm all for Christmas themed books in December, but a book that can be read all the time is always a great choice! 

This little mini sized robot packs a punch for such a small size. With the ability to attach Legos, and Lego like building blocks, your child will have a blast learning how to code with this little guy! 

4.) DVDs

I can never go wrong by wrapping up some DVDs and putting them under the tree. M and Mr. B both love getting DVDs of their favorite shows and movies. 

 Mr. B will be opening Caillou's Holiday Movie, Thomas Edison's Secret Lab, and Sonic Christmas Blast! Each of these DVDs provide endless entertainment.

Caillou's Holiday Movie has always been a favorite of his. I love the lesson of Christmas around the world featured in the film!

Thomas Edison's Secret Lab feature our favorite scientist hard at work!

Join Sonic and his friends in Holiday themed adventure in Sonic Christmas Blast! Everything you've come to expect from a great Sonic the Hedgehog DVD!

Princess J is going to be enjoying The Little Prince The Planet of Gargand, Doozers Giant Gingerbread House, and Yo Gabba Gabba LIVE Holiday Show! I know she's going to be THRILLED!
 These DVDs are great for kids, especially the younger crowd. She loves to sing along to the shows, and I love the moral and educational lessons she's being taught.

Like I said, You can never go wrong with a good DVD!

5.) Blocks

Blocks...can you ever go wrong? Mr. B has always loved these, and it's time for some new ones. Melissa and Doug brand have stood up to years of abuse, so that's what we're going with again. I did not provide a link since you can find them various places, and at various costs. Rumor has it AC Moore Stores will be having Melissa and Doug on sale for Black Friday, but of course that could change between now and then. 

6.) STEM Activities

From build your own robots and coding computers, to microscopes and circuit boards, STEM activities are always a huge hit with Mr. B. I love gifts that have an educational component to them, and STEM "toys" certainly has that factor! 

Other things on the list:

Of course we have our long standing wish list items of:

Matchbox/Hot wheels cars
Large pads of paper
Craft supplies
Car sets
MicroCharger car sets (SUPER HARD TO FIND)
Stuffed Animals

Mr. B has also asked for some odd things like a caliper to measure width and a contractor's calculator. 

What's on your Christmas list this year?  Leave a comment here or on the blog, and I'll randomly choose one person to win a 6pk of KwikStix from The Pencil Grip, Inc! 

You're gonna love Rick Warren's Children's Books!

I love Christmas time! And one thing I like to do is have a selection of books wrapped for Mr. B to choose from each night. He opens the book, and then we read it together as a bedtime story. He is getting older now, but he still loves to cuddle up with mommy and let me read him a bedtime story. These are definitely memories I will cherish forever.

 Rick Warren has two books out that are just for this very scenario! 

God’s Big Plans for Me Storybook Bible illustrates the 40 foundational principles written in the #1 New York Times bestseller The Purpose Driven Life by Pastor Rick Warren. With child-friendly language, engaging illustrations, and a chronological approach, Pastor Warren introduces each Bible story with a theme that aligns with one of his foundational principles. He wraps up the stories with a closing thought targeted to early readers. The colorful illustrations and narrative tone bring these beloved Bible stories to life for readers young and old. God’s Big Plans for Me Storybook Bible has foil decoration on the cover.

About God’s Great Love for You:
God’s Great Love for You, written by #1 New York Times bestselling author and respected pastor Rick Warren, takes children on a whimsical and heartfelt journey that lets them know God’s love is with them wherever they go. With breathtaking illustrations by Chris Saunders, the simple yet poignant text comes alive as a child journeys to places far and near and discovers God’s great love is perfect, and everywhere, and will never end.

As you can see, both of these books are great for kids. They are perfect for read aloud, and bedtime stories. They feature lovely illustrations, and will help you to create cherished memories for years to come! And if you are like us, and like to have a stack of books for each night of the Christmas Season then I highly recommend either of these! 

This is a sponsored post which means I received product in exchange for my honest opinion. I wasn't required to write a positive review, nor was I compensated in any other way. All opinions expressed are my own or those of my family. 

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Devotional for Young Women

This wonderful devotional for young ladies is sure to bring joy and smiles to a young woman in your life. This beautifully designed hardback features a devotional for every day. There are even areas on the pages for note taking, and some blank pages in the back. I wish the verses were KJV translation, but they are not. That's my one and only complaint with this well organized, well designed devotional for young ladies! 

About the 365-day devotional:

Each day features an easy-to-read, relevant devotion paired with a scripture verse and journaling space to help readers reflect on the day’s message. The book tackles tough topics girls face, from bullying and social media to friendships and dating, all the while showing readers how infinitely precious they are in God’s sight.

$14.99, Hardcover, For ages 13 & up

If you'd like your own copy, be sure to "LIKE" our Facebook page. One winner will be chosen on December 1st! 

Disclosure (in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255:  “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”):  Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for the giveaway.  Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation.  I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post. Only one entrant per mailing address, per giveaway.  If you have won a prize from our sponsor Propeller /FlyBy Promotions in the last 30 days on the same blog, you are not eligible to win.  Or if you have won the same prize on another blog, you are not eligible to win it again.  Winner is subject to eligibility verification.

Wordless Wednesday

Monday, November 13, 2017

Sound for Life LTD {{{REVIEW}}}

Forbrain Sound for Life LTD
Sound for Life LTD has a really great and unique product called Forbrain. Last year, I brought you a review of how Forbrain has helped Mr. B. This year, I want to talk about how Forbrain has continued to help Mr. B, but also how it has helped Princess J who is now old enough to use this. 
A little background is both kids have autism. Mr. B's flavor of autism has him being EXTREMELY verbal, but he always had issues pronouncing some words, especially more complicated words like escalator. He also has issues in reading where he will either add in words, change words, or take out words. But as far as oral communication, he has been speaking in full sentences since he was about 3.5. Princess J, on the other hand, will turn 5 in just 3 months and she has yet to say a sentence on her own. 
Forbrain Sound for Life LTD
I am a firm believer in echolalia as a tool to help otherwise non-verbal children with autism to build a bag of tools for their own vocabulary one day. I think it is a great trait for an autistic child to have, and parents and therapist can truly use it to their benefit to help the child learn to communicate effectively. Both Mr. B and Princess J have turned to echolalia as a means of communication and entertainment, and this is great for Forbrain! 
When they repeat words and phrases, even in a delayed manner like these two kids have always done, Forbrain hones in on specific sounds, and downplays ambient sounds with the dynamic filter, to produce a clearer sound than air conduction alone. And by use of bone conduction, the signals get sent to the brain much faster than by air conduction, so they hear themselves in real time, too.

Forbrain shouldn't be worn for indefinite periods of time. Mr. B is older, so I allow him to wear his twice a day for 20 minutes, and a 3rd for about 10 minutes. He's 12. Princess J is only 4.5. She's at the minimum age for use, so she uses it much less right now. I've noticed personally, I get a headache if I wear it too much. So Princess J only wears hers for about 5mins twice a day right now. That's about all she can tolerate at the moment. 

Mr B has been a Forbrain user for around 18 months now. I've noticed a HUGE improvement in his overall enunciation, memory, and focus. He self corrects more now as compared to before using Forbrain, and the benefits we saw early on have only been amplified (see what I did there???) Words he had a hard time saying before, like Finger or Escalator, are now easily said because he would repeat them while wearing Forbrain to hear what his mistakes were. Now, I'm wanting him to improve his overall reading. He's bad to want to rush through it so he adds words, changes words, or skips over them. He may say ask instead of as, or out instead of on. Something small, but something that can really change the whole meaning of what he's reading. I have him read out loud while wearing Forbrain, and I have noticed a lot less mistakes in reading as a result.

Princess J is largely non verbal. BUT, she does have echolalia beahviors. She will repeat phrases she hears in pre-school, or just at home, frequently. If she wants to say no, she will say something like, "No Samuel!" Because she hears the teacher tell a little boy no a lot in her school. For months, when she didn't want to leave her brother, she would say, "No B, stop pushing me!" Mr. B never pushed her. She heard me tell him to stop pushing against my hand when I was applying a medicine patch to his back. And she associated that with him. She will repeat songs she hears, and phrases from TV shows. While wearing Forbrain, she repeats these and hears herself. This has caused a large increase in her verbal sounds. She wants to hear herself more and more, so she is repeating more and more. This is actually great because she's starting to do it on command, too. 

Long term use of Forbrain has proven to be quite beneficial for Mr. B. I have noticed a huge improvement in overall speech and enunciation. His reading skills have improved, his overall focus is better, and I've even noticed less sensory seeking behavior.
Princess J has become more vocal during the review period, and she has become more outgoing and less reserved and held back. I expect to see the same benefits, and an increase in purposeful speech from her with long term use. 
Overall, Forbrain has been great for these two. I think it would be a great tool for apraxia drills and even social communication therapy. It even has applications for learning disabilities, specifically reading difficulties. 

Please click the banner below to read more reviews by the Homeschool Review Crew. 
Forbrain {Sound For Life Ltd Review}
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Thursday, November 9, 2017

Innovators Tribe REVIEW

Innovators Tribe
Recently, we received a 2-year subscription to Thinking Like an Engineer by Innovators Tribe. This is a really fun, and hands on program that gets your student on the road to engineering. This online course is self-paced and designed for kids in 6-12 grade. This program features self paced online video segments, hands on activities, design software, and even a journal you can print and keep for records. 
Innovators Tribe What You Get
How did we use this?
I first spent a few days going over everything myself so I could be familiar if a question came up. The course layout is great. It's easy to use, and any reader of my blog knows how much I like a "billboard obvious" login.

The log in for this is at the top. It's easy to find, and that's great for kids like Mr. B! 

The course has a syllabus and a running list down the side. What is great about this is that it features the duration for each portion. Mr. B doesn't have to ask me "How long do I need to do this?" or "How long will this take?" He can easily look to this side and see that Lesson 3 on clean water is going to take 15 minutes. 

 After I became familiar with the layout, and basics, it was time for Mr. B to get started. I knew he would like the program, but I grossly underestimated the degree at which he likes it. He didn't want to stop! When he finally got to the first activity, and realized we had 0 masking tape in the house, it was clear I really had no choice but to go to the store and buy some because he wasn't going to stop trying to come up with an alternative. He really takes the course seriously, and does his best to accomplish each activity, on his own, with little to know help from me. 
Thinking Like an Engineer

Mr. B works through the lessons in order, and spends about 3 or 4 days a week on it. There have been times he's asked to repeat the Challenge Activity. I can't show all that we did, so I picked out my personal favorite which was the Lesson 3 Challenge Activity of filtering water.

 It just so happened that I didn't have what was needed to do this, and I wasn't going out at the time. So...we tried to wing it. I knew I had everything here to whip up a quick field filter, but I couldn't remember how to do it exactly. So the materials are a plastic bottle, cotton balls, moss, gravel, sand, charcoal, and some yucky, NASTY water that I gathered up from a mud hole by the road. It is full of red clay gunk, so it's all kinds of gross. I wasn't even sure it would work in this filter lol.
So basically I cut the bottle in half, stuffed the opening part with cotton, then layered on some charcoal from a Keurig Filter, sand, then some moss, then gravel, and more moss for good measure. I know moss can do something to purify water, so I wanted a double dose. Of course, hindsight tells me the sand was wet from rain and the moss was dirty. But...whatever, we tried.

I poured the water slowly because I knew Mr. B would go too quickly and make a mess. did come out a bit more clear. But not enough. I'm sure if we did this through 3 or 4 more filters, it'd be a lot more clear. I'm going to try and find Alum and the other stuff needed to make the one in the Activity, but for now, this was a great way to at least showcase what it was supposed to do! 

(I'll post this pics of this as soon as my phone behaves and sends them to my email.)

Overall, This course is great. My son is learning a lot, and I feel it is well suited for the intended grades. I high recommend it! 

Does Innovators Tribe Pass My 4 Ingredient Test?

1.) Customization: Is it easily adaptable? Can we customize it to fit “us?” Can we modify or set our own schedule? Can we take breaks, jump ahead, or flat out skip?

The lessons are in order, and I wouldn't suggest skipping. Actually, I am not even sure if it's possible to skip since we didn't even try. These are self paced, so you can set your own schedule, pause, and take breaks. I was able to tweak the water filter activity, but that's really been the only one we've tweaked out of necessity.


2.) Value: Is it long lasting? Will it cover multiple grade ranges? Are you locked in to one specific grade level? Are there hidden fees?

Our subscription for review is for two years, and good for the whole family. It is good for the intended ages of 6th to 12th grades. I'm not sure I'd attempt it with younger grades. Now, with that said, younger kids could definitely take part in some of the Challenge Activities. 
There are NO hidden fees beyond the need for certain materials for the challenge activities that we mostly had on hand. 
3.) Attention span: Is it boring? Is it engaging? Is it varied enough for ADHD? Does it last too long?

It's not boring at all! Each video lesson is pretty short, and the duration listed. They are varied in time, but usually no more than about 15 mins. The Challenge Activities take longer, but they are fun and hands on. For example, the water filter is said to take 120 minutes, but it takes a bit to build it, and it takes a bit for the water to go through. I think it's great for ADHD. 

4.) Does it tie into other things we already have.

This is great for science, and each portion can tie in differently. 

Please click the banner below to check out more review from The Homeschool Review Crew! 

Thinking Like an Architect or Engineer {Innovators Tribe Reviews}

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Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Thin Stix Creativity Pack REVIEW

The Pencil Grip, Inc.

So....I love The Pencil Grip, Inc. They have consistently been one of my favorite vendors, and their products never disappoint. Mr. B is always so excited when we receive a package from them! It's like Christmas or his birthday! He rips open the packaging before I can even snap a picture of it for the blog! And that was definitely the case when the Thin Stix Creativity Pack arrived. He had the package open before I even had the camera app pulled up! 
Thin Stix Creativity Pack
The Thin Stix Creativity Pack is an amazing set of Thin Stix! You'll find 24 colors that are sure to make art time fun and exciting. My son immediately dumped them all in the living room floor, and started drawing. I can't count the number of weather maps he made HAHA! 

This is just one of his many drawings! He loves them so much, and he thinks everyone should have a set. 

What I especially like about this set is the varied color choices. You have the regular colors, but you also have a selection of neon and metallics, too. He loved drawing his own coins with the metallic colors. Thin Stix are great because they work like paint, but they function like a crayon. So there is no mess like you find with a paint brush and paint. They take about a minute or two to fully dry, so you can even blend them and "smoosh" them around in that time frame. This is great for special needs, especially sensory seekers who make like to sling the paint brush loaded with paint around like my son.

The contents of each Thin Stix lasts a good amount of time, too. And it will go on anything from wood to paper, and even plastic. I will say though, that it will easily peel off plastic. But I think that was the reason Mr. B did it in the first place lol. He also took these outside and marked on some trees, and it lasted on there through several rains. That's good if you want something that will last a bit, but be warned that these are not washable and they will stain.

A few things we have done with Thin Stix:

He made weather maps.

He drew hurricanes, hurricane prediction maps, and radar maps.

He drew artwork to correspond with his lessons for the day.

He marked on tape and put it outside on the foundation of the house and porch to indicate a fire route. 

He drew on scrap wood and placed it outside as road signs. 

He drew each planet, then hung them from the ceiling and took us on tours of the solar system.


Overall, we couldn't be happier with the Thin Stix Creativity Pack. The included colors are great for hours and hours of art and creative fun. They are a great assortment, and we never felt like there was a color missing or needed. As much as we like the assorted colors,  I think having a pack of just high use colors like black, red, blue, and maybe grey would be a great idea, too. I would definitely purchase a 3 or 4 pack of nothing but black to supplement the 24 count creativity pack! Overall, another huge hit by The Pencil Grip, Inc

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Thin Stix Creativity Pack {The Pencil Grip, Inc. Reviews}

A few other reviews of The Pencil Grip, Inc.

Pencil Grips andUltra Safe Safety Scissors

Neon and Metallic Colors

Kwik Stix 12 Pk

Thin Stix 6pk

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