British Literature: Mid-Late 19th Century

The following is a review of British Literature: Mid-Late 19th Century Lightning Literature & Composition from Hewitt Homeschooling with the TOS Homeschool Review Crew. 

Designed for 10th - 12th grades, this course fit into our plans perfectly as my daughter wrapped up her junior year and her British Literature and history studies. Lightning Literature for senior high has a weekly schedule instead of a daily one. Lesson plans are provided for eighteen weeks, though some do stretch it to cover a whole year. 

Four books are required to complete this course: 
Silas Marner
Great Expectations
The Importance of Being Earnest
Complete Stalky and Co. 

We had several on our bookshelves already, and I was able to download three as free ebooks. In addition to the books listed, selections by Alfred, Lord Tennyson, Lewis Carrol, and small excerpts by other authors are included printed in the student guide. Quotes from each author are included in the corresponding chapters of the student book. The editor said that he tried to choose books that were important to British Literature and that provide strong examples of good writing. 

Why and how to read good literature are covered in the beginning of the student book. A good explanation is provided of why to read great literature, with bullet points that are key to the book. It promotes the reading of good literature. 

Grandparents often help out with our homeschool lessons, and my dad pointed out that the student book has an easy to read print.  My mom noted "I believe this book would be very helpful not just to people of many ages. I can even see it as a beginning college text. It covers a lot." 

It provides a good introduction to some of the masters of literature including Charles Dickens. Every chapter has a large section of study questions. 

In the study of Great Expectations, the four types of conflict are covered, with specific focus on the conflicts in that book. The lesson covers how every conflict fits into one of these four types: conflicts with nature, conflicts with another character, conflicts with society at large, and internal conflicts. 

Part of the introduction explains how to read (and break down) poetry. Three works by Alfred, Lord Tennyson pull the student to the time period as they begin to utilize those poetry skills. I'm enjoying reading about Excalibur and more with my daughter. 

More from my daughter: "At the beginning of the book there is a very helpful introduction which addresses questions that you might have about the course. One of the questions asked "Why Read Literature?" What I found very helpful was when the book explained how to read poetry and the different types of poetry. For the lessons that included poetry as the literature it is helpful to go back and look at that guide. The book also includes a schedule which shows how you can complete the Study in a semester or a full-year. Each of the lessons include an introduction. Some of them talk about the author or poets life. I've always found it neat seeing how much of an authors life actually influences what they write. After you read the poem or book for each lesson it asks you several comprehension questions that ensure you remember some of the important topics. I enjoyed reading the quotes written by the authors featured in the lessons. At the very end of the lessons it includes a list of writing exercises. Some of them are challenging but also fun."

In summary, my daughter said "it's a good book." 

Find them on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Google+, and be sure to tell them hi from Jennifer at A Glimpse of Our Life.

Others on the TOS Homeschool Review Crew reviewed so many things from Hewitt Homeschooling; I counted over 17 different products from them on our list. Click the graphic below, you will surely find something that fits your family.
Hewitt Homeschooling {Reviews}

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Introductory Physics Review

Introductory Physics is one of the Novare Science & Math books written by John D. Mays.  The author writes from his experience and research in graduate school, in the engineering world, and also many years as an educator. We reviewed the second edition of this book. Introductory Physics is written from a Kingdom Perspective seeking to engage students to think about how they perceive God's fingerprints in creation. Do you know how much I love that? The author further shared that "science and math teachers need to think broadly about how we fulfill Christ's mandate to love God with all our mind." Yes, we do!   

Beyond science, this Introductory Physics course also incorporates math, history, and epistemology. If your student is taking Algebra I now, they have the prerequisite math skills for concurrent study of this course. Eleven chapters of this hardback textbook are designed for high school freshmen; with the additional chapters (8 and 13) included it is also appropriate for both a sophomore or junior science course. The optional chapters do require higher algebra skills. 

We also received the material that would typically be included on the resource CD as a download. This material includes a course overview and schedule, quizzes and quiz keys, semester exams and keys, sample answers for verbal questions, and weekly review guides.  

In distinctly different ways, all three of my children have a love of science. As a homeschool mom, I search for curriculum and opportunities that best fit each of their interests and learning styles. We tried out a new science homeschool group this spring. I read the experiments planned before we attended and tested them with a vocabulary list that was provided that corresponded with the experiments. Unfortunately, when we participated, it seemed like more of a magic fun play-day. Kids loved it, but the scientist in me rebelled that the opportunity wasn't used to have them work through the scientific process. Make hypotheses, test theories, research possibilities and learn from what you do. It was a great opportunity, but lacking in method and instruction. I want more for my children! This book provides more! 

The very first chapter of Introductory Physics teaches students all about the difference in a theory and a hypothesis and how experiments can prove or disprove a theory. The scientific method is put into action from the first lesson! This is Biblical based science. In the lessons, God's truths and scientific facts are taught, both how to recognize and test them and how they overlap. I enjoyed jumping into this book and am enjoying incorporating it into my lesson plans for our next school year. 

At the beginning of each chapter is a list of objectives which includes memorization of laws, equations, conversion factors, metric prefixes, and more. The book teaches students how to effectively organize study material and study strategies. It is a comprehensive science text but covers so much more than science, too. Multiple colorful pictures also go along with what you learn in each lesson.

Although it is not the most important factor in choosing a curriculum, my child's enjoyment of a lesson is important to me. I want them to love learning; that is one of the goals of my homeschool. I want them to study, even when it is not required, to hear a tidbit of information and research more, to learn how to find answers that are not clearly spelled out in front of them. With that in mind, a quality book that engages them as they learn is my desire. This Introductory Physics book does that. They like it, so they apply themselves. We are all happy with this book.  

Find Novare Science & Math online on Facebook, Pinterest, and Instagram. (Look for their retweet of our picture the day our Introductory Physics book came in the mail.) 

They also publish other science and math books, just like the name suggests. Their Physics: Modeling Nature is an upper-level senior physics course. The Homeschool Review Crew reviewed four of their titles including Introductory Physics, Earth Science: God's World, Our Home, Science for Every Teacher, and General Chemistry which you can find by clicking the graphic below. I want to add them all to our homeschool library. 
Biblical Based Science {Novare Science & Math Reviews}
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Scripture and a Snapshot

How sweet are Your words to my taste! Yes, sweeter than honey to my mouth! Psalm 119:103 

     Thank you for joining Scripture & A Snapshot. Leave a comment with a verse that God has placed on your heart this week, or leave a link to your own post sharing a Scripture and a snapshot. Take time to visit  some of the other links, too. If you would like to join our group Pinterest board for Scripture & A Snapshot, simply follow the board then let me know your Pinterest name or email used there so that I can add you to it. 

Scripture and Snapshot

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Homeschool Planet

The following is a review of Homeschool Planet from Homeschool Buyers Co-op with the TOS Homeschool Review Crew. 

We received a one year subscription to Homeschool Planet as well as a limited offer of their June special of a free lesson plan from their brand new Lesson Plan Marketplace

This online planning resource is so much more integrated with our family screens than my typical pen and journal planners. Adding a cell phone number with each person added to the planner has the additional bonus of enabling messages and reminders to that family member by text. It is evident that this planner was designed for the modern homeschool family. It is more than just a lesson planner; it is a life planner! In fact, it was even designed by homeschoolers! From a computer, this resource is easy to use. The safari version was being updated when I signed up, so I primarily accessed it from my laptop. It does require an internet connection. 

Homeschool Planet's homeschool planner is just one part of Homeschool Buyers Co-op. They offer resources and special sales for homeschool families. You can sign up for their emails and never miss one of their daily deals. In the past we've ordered God's World News through their link. 

When setting up profiles for your family members, you can upload pictures to further personalize each one. I used nicknames for each persons profile name. The calendar has multiple options for planner, resources, and lesson plans. As you add to the planner, additional options let you choose class, birthdays, and everything else. Since our lessons have slowed down during this summer, most of our plans fell in the "everything else" category. Each activity can be labeled for one or multiple people. Class subjects are color coded on the planner. 

I used the class option for things like VBS which have multiple days. I added an additional subject of "family" for events we are all a part of. Typical subjects are already installed and can be personalized with just a few clicks. Choosing the class option activates the assignment generator. Assignments can be customized and changed for each day. 

In addition to the calendar, the planner desktop or home screen includes several customizable options. These options include a daily quote, daily Bible verse, reading list, to do list, shopping list, weather, look up, and messages. My favorite option is the encouraging Daily Bible Verse.

"The Lord will protect you
from all evil; He will keep
your soul. The Lord will
guard your going out and 
your coming in from this
time forth and forever. 

Another freebie I chose specifically for my son was the 8th grade Daily Reading Comprehension which can be downloaded and printed. I chose to save it as an ebook. Homeschool Buyers Co-op has so many special offers. If you haven't already discovered them, sign up! They offer a free one month trial of Homeschool Planet. If you sign up in June, you will receive the offer for the free lesson from lesson plan marketplace, too! 

Find them on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram.
Homeschool Planet {Homeschool Buyers Co-op Reviews}

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Adventures of Rush Revere

The following is a review of The Adventures of Rush Revere Book Series with the TOS Homeschool Review Crew. 

My son just finished reading the last book of the Adventures of Rush Revere #1 New York Times Bestselling Book Series by Rush and Kathryn Adams Limbaugh, and he has already asked if I think the authors will write more. This five book series captured his attention and he has been reading more consistently for the past six weeks than I've seen him read in a while. These books have completely engaged him while simultaneously teaching him about American history. I hope that the authors write more, too. And yes, I've been reading this series, too. 

My daddy first introduced me to Rush Limbaugh years ago through his radio talk show. It became an easy introduction to us discussing politics together. These stories aren't nearly as controversial as those talk shows, although the sassy character Elizabeth does add some of the same type of high emotion. 

These books are beautiful! Hard cover books with a classic appearance have full color book jackets which give an idea of the characters' appearance. They arrived tied together with a satin ribbon. Each book of filled with fun pictures in full color.  They illustrate the stories in an exciting way.  You can see examples below. 

Rush Revere and the Brave Pilgrims
Rush Revere and the First Patriots
Rush Revere and the American Revolution 
Rush Revere and the Star Spangled Banner
Rush Revere and the Presidency 

Mix historical fiction (one of my favorite genres) with a bit of fantasy, add a dash of sci-fi, and stir it all together in a modern classroom. These books are fiction, but they are filled with facts from our American history. These five books cover the time from Pilgrims coming to America through the inauguration of President John Adams. Each book is over 200 pages long. 

The main character is Rush Revere, a time traveling substitute history teacher. His mode of travel is unusual-- Liberty, a sometimes invisible horse who brings humans through portals to America's past. And Liberty dances and talks! Students Tommy, Cam, Freedom, and Elizabeth all respond differently as they experience the unbelievable time travel with Rush Revere. 

These books make you think about history and ask questions. Are you sure that pilgrims wore black and white like the kindergarten costumes we see every Thanksgiving?

Do you know the difference in the Poop deck or Forecastle of a ship? If not, then you'll appreciate the labeled drawing of a cutaway view of the Mayflower which clearly illustrates each location visited in the first book. Every book is filled with full color drawings: maps, tools, characters, and more make history come to life.

At the end of some of the books, there is a list of related questions as pictured below. I read and discussed the questions with my son. 

My son's favorite book of the series is Rush Revere and the Star Spangled Banner. He said that in this book, Rush spends more time in the modern day than he does in the past. 

Cam is my son's favorite character. "He has a positive attitude about everything. He doesn't stop doing something once he starts." 

My son shared that he learned a lot. He thought it was neat when the students in Rush's class were able to go back in time and ask the historical figures questions that helped them to better understand history. I think these books would be a great addition to any family library.

Find Rush Revere on Facebook, Twitter @RushRevere , and on You-tube.
                         Adventures of Rush Revere Book Series {Reviews}
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Scripture and A Snapshot

And because you are sons, God has sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father. Galatians 4:6 

     Happy Father's Day! 

     I grew up with two dear men I was privileged to call Daddy. Both of them helped me learn more about the love of our Heavenly Father. I am so thankful for the unmeasurable ways they blessed my life. 

     Thank you for joining Scripture & A Snapshot. Leave a comment with a verse that God has placed on your heart this week, or leave a link to your own post sharing a Scripture and a snapshot. Take time to visit  some of the other links, too. If you would like to join our group Pinterest board for Scripture & A Snapshot, simply follow the board then let me know your Pinterest name or email used there so that I can add you to it. 

Scripture and Snapshot

Follow Jennifer Miller's board Scripture & A Snapshot on Pinterest.



Learning All The Time

Get ready for a series you won't want to miss. 10 Days of... everything imaginable about homeschooling. In July, my contributions to this series will be 10 Days of Balancing and Incorporating Homeschool With Life! It's how we homeschool.


Scripture and a Snapshot

The link has been extended. Please continue to add your links for this week. 

Let all those that seek thee rejoice and be glad in thee: let such as love thy salvation say continually, The Lord be magnified. Psalm 40:16 

     Thank you for joining Scripture & A Snapshot. Leave a comment with a verse that God has placed on your heart this week, or leave a link to your own post sharing a Scripture and a snapshot. Take time to visit  some of the other links, too. If you would like to join our group Pinterest board for Scripture & A Snapshot, simply follow the board then let me know your Pinterest name or email used there so that I can add you to it. 

Scripture and Snapshot

Follow Jennifer Miller's board Scripture & A Snapshot on Pinterest.



Nature's Beautiful Order

The following is a review of Nature's Beautiful Order from Memoria Press with the TOS Homeschool Review Crew. 

We keep discovering new books from Memoria Press that seamlessly fit into our homeschool plans. This most recent set is a science reader, workbook, and teacher's answer book all about animals. It is recommended for 6th to 9th grades, and my 7th grader wrapped up his school year with this change from his previous science lessons with my mom. I questioned if it covered biology at first as that was my tentative 8th grade plan for him, but it is different from a biology text. This set is broken into chapters, most devoted to a different bird, insect, or mammal, and ending with man. 

Chapter 16: Farm Friends was my favorite chapter. We live on a farm. The beautiful orderliness of God's design is indeed evident all around us. From newborn kittens and freshly hatched baby chicks, miraculous new life is often present. This chapter shares how our country has changed from many families having farms to now taking field trips to working farms. Cows and pigs are focused on in this lesson. Our own dairy cow is a sort of pipe dream for us; I love fresh milk and all of the things we can make with it. 

Years ago, my grandad had bees on the farm. As he aged, he stopped his bee activity, and then after getting stung repeatedly the hives were set aside. We've recently been researching bee keeping and hope to be able to extract honey from our inherited hives. We found applicable resources for our state and even attended a nearby beekeepers meeting, but the information shared there about various bee mites was above our beginner level. This book has an entire chapter devoted to bees! The ten page chapter starts with scientific historical facts and progresses through bee reproduction, hives, and beekeeping. Some of the corresponding questions for chapter 5 in the student guide are:

* Describe the composition of the beehive.
* Is the hexagonal design of the honeycomb significant?
* What lesson may we take from the bee as a social animal?

These are the three books we received for this review: 

If you read my review of the American History set from Memoria Press earlier this year, this set is very similar, though without the accompanying flash cards. Instead of the vocabulary and short questions of the history workbook, these questions are all open ended questions. The student reads a selection from the book then works through the corresponding pages in the student guide. I required complete sentences in the answers written in the student guide. After my son completed them, I then checked his answers with the teacher key. These lessons were relevant to our life and interesting to read, both for me and my son. He was able to read and complete the workbook independently and then I discussed the information and reviewed any incorrect answers with him. I recommend this a a great middle school science curriculum. For us, it is the perfect precursor to biology. 

We reviewed Nature's Beautiful Order but Memoria Press also offers Latin Curriculum from Early Elementary to High School. I noticed that they also have a brand new biology curriculum! 

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Latin, Nature and Trees {Memoria Press Reviews}


Alan Shepard

The following is a review of the book Alan Shepard Higher and Faster from YWAM Publishing Christian: Heroes Then & Now Heroes of History with the TOS Homeschool Review Crew. 

We are always looks for great books to read, and the YWAM Publishing Christian Heroes Then & Now Heroes of History books are exceptional biographies. My son requested Heroes of History- Alan Shepard when we were given this review opportunity.

Alan Shepard Higher and Faster is a 229 page paperback book that covers the life of this American hero.  It also, to my sons dismay, shared about his death. "Mom," he said, as he reached the end, "you didn't tell me he died!" He enjoyed leaning all about his career as both a navy pilot and then as an astronaut. 

Our entire family enjoys learning about airplanes and space travel. If an air museum is at all close to our travel destination, it's almost sure to be an essential detour for us. My son used the corresponding study guide to further enhance what he read in this book. Activity suggestions include touring just such a place, and we are hoping to be able to go back to the Cosmosphere when we visit my inlaws. My son was very little last time we went so hardly remembers it. Vocabulary words are also included in the study guide. I added a few to my son's weekly spelling and vocabulary lists, and he then challenged his sister as he learned the meanings. " Do you know what don means? 

Below is just one glimpse of the type of lessons included in the study guide. It turns the book into a multi-subject unit study. 

Famous quotations from both the main character and others that are relevant are also included. 

"Whether you are an astronomer or a life scientist, geophysicist, or a pilot, you've got to be there because you believe you are good in your field, and you can contribute, not because you are going to get a lot of fame or whatever when you get back." -- Alan Shepard
We recently watched an old movie called Strategic Air Command. Joseph noticed that many of the same experiences parallel the book. He shared a few of his thoughts about the book below:

"Alan shepherd higher and faster is a historic book that tells us about the life of an American hero. It is an inspiring and uplifting book; you learn the importance of patience and team work. A great part of the book is when Alan had work to achieve a goal he set for himself. A very fascinating part of the book is when Alan joins the navy to be an air pilot but has to go through other hardships first. Later, Alan is in the space race and I read about the slow process to being one of the first American astronauts. It has been a great book to read."

These are great books for any family, in my opinion. Biographies from YWAM Publishing are also available as ebooks and audiobooks. 

Find YWAM Publishing online: 
and on their blog


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Christian & History Heroes {YWAM Publishing Reviews}