This week, I had the joy of finding a new resource for our home school with SchoolhouseTeachers.com , another resource from “The Old Schoolhouse Magazine”, which is dedicated to enhancing our teaching. When I first went on the site (for the introductory price of $1 for the first month), I felt like I had opened the door and passed through the threshold to door upon door of classrooms. And each door had an enticing title. How to decide which door to open first. Would it be “Asia: People and History,” “Elementary Literature Kits,” “Figures in History,” “Career Exploration,” “Media Socialization,” “Guitar,” “French,” or even “Filmmaking?” To make matters worse, there were at least 60 doors to choose from.
The SchoolhouseTeachers.com website felt like a collection of virtual classrooms just waiting for me to explore as another means of giving my children the best education possible. The best part is, that after my $1 trial month, the cost is still very affordable at just $5.95 a month and this online program works on Macs and PC’s. All of the lessons presented (that I looked at) had printables available of the lesson plan itself and most with complimentary worksheets. Everything I need for each lesson is right there, ready to go. Some of the lessons had suggested resources for enhancement of the lessons, but each could easily stand alone. Some virtual classrooms even had videos to watch. To get started, I decided to take a quick peek into each door. There were classrooms for elementary, middle school and high school students. Since I have 2 elementary and 2 high school students, I explored those areas first. There is also another fantastic classroom called “Dailies.” Little daily gems to easily incorporate into my lessons: Grammar, Writing, Math, Copywork, Explorers, Astronomy and much more. Just little tidbits with lots of information all wrapped up and ready to share. The “Library” offered alone offered a Craft Shelf, Art Shelf, History Shelf, Technology?Computer Shelf and many more resources. It took me a couple of evenings to finish my tour, as there were so many incredible “classrooms”to visit and each “classroom” is lead by a homeschooling expert in that area.
My youngest is 7 and has not been ready to do any formal type of spelling program. Copywork, to learn to spell, has not been the best match, for him as of yet. He has worked diligently since he was 4, but is a late reader like his big sister was (she is reading Les Miserables right now at 16 and has a book of American Documents by her bed just in case she needs a nighttime read). So when I came upon the “Elementary Spelling” in the “Dailies” section I was thrilled to see a plan that I could easily put into motion. Each week there is a new list with daily lesson plans. Each day has a printable worksheet. For my guy, I chose the easiest list with only 5 words. Just right where he is at. We have done one worksheet a day this week and yesterday, he could spell all 5 words out loud! He has been feeling a bit down about the whole reading issue, because he is old enough that he thinks he should be reading at a higher level now, so having a spelling list that he could succeed at, boosted his self assurance and he was so proud! For the most part I am a follower of the Charlotte Mason educational style, with a bit of eclectic thrown in for good measure, but for my youngest, having a traditional list of words, all following the same spelling pattern, was just what he needed at this point in his education. I probably would not have sought out a traditional type spelling plan to purchase, but having the chance to examine this spelling plan in it’s entirety, I knew at once that it would be a great addition to his daily work. I will continue with this throughout the year as it is so handy, worked well for him and is almost free!!!
In the “Dailies” section, I also loved the “Simply Shakespeare.” This is something I could use with all of my children from 2nd through 10th grade! I grabbed my dusty (yes, I will admit this publicly) copy of Charles and Mary Lamb’s Tales from Shakespeare and am looking forward to a group read aloud this afternoon of “The Tempest” and devotion using Proverbs 3:2, 27; 29:2, 19-21, as recommended, followed by a discussion of the overall theme which is clearly laid out (BIG YAY!!), “Discussion Prompters” for our narrative time and then I will grab our world map because even the “Geography of Shakespeare” is included in these lesson plans. I think I will have my youngers conclude with an illustration of “The Tempest” with a dictation or simple written narrative and have my olders write a brief essay for their portfolios. But the thing I loved most about these lesson plans is that there are recipes for a meal so that we can “taste Shakespeare’s World!”
Clouted Cream and Biscuits
There were so many exciting lessons in this online program, with the work already done for me, that I will definitely be going back to SchoolhouseTeachers.com on pretty much a daily basis! I am so excited to have found this new (to me) resource with ideas that are ready to implement right away! There is something for PreK through high school (one of my HS daughters is anxious to try the Worldview’s course) and a little bit for us teachers too! That is something this busy mama of 4 can definitely delight in! One more reason that “The Old Schoolhouse Magazine” has always been one of my most favorite home schooling magazines!
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~Happily Using a New Teaching Tool~
Disclaimer: I was not paid to write this review. It is my honest opinion. I was not required to write a positive review, nor was I compensated in any way for writing this review. All opinions expressed are my own or those of my family. I am disclosing this in accordance with the FTC Regulations.