Shaping little humans is tough business!

The job of teacher and Mom are some of the hardest on the planet. Some days I long for a job at a coffee shop where I just follow a recipe and “do my job”.

Teaching and homeschooling are not quite like that. Every child, and I mean EVERY CHILD is different. Even with over 20 years of experience, I still get thrown some pretty tough curve balls. Those balls dance, and sing before they cross home plate, and some days, I don’t think I have a chance of fielding them.

Hello – copywork. Copywork offers something for even my most diverse of learning styles. Copywork is: spelling, handwriting, grammar, reading and character education wrapped into one!

The character education part of copywork is my favorite, because I can find a meaningful quote for EACH CHILD (or student in my class) based on behaviors they are presenting.

Once my copywork routine is established, they don’t even realize I have “targeted” them in any way.

There is no wrong way to use copywork, this is simply how I used it in my home (and classroom). Feel free to adapt to your needs!

Learner reads the quote or passage aloud or the passage is read to them.

Learner traces over the passage. I imagine they are saying the words as they write them :-), I mean that’s what I do!

Learner copies the passage onto their own paper, working as neatly as they are able. For the youngest of learners tracing may be enough. This can be done daily, with the same quote, and the quote can be recited from memory at the end of the week, or it can simply be copied once.

The teacher should be mindful of age, ability and any learning challenges such as pencil grip, dysgraphia, or other possible processing differences.

Discuss the quote, what it means, who said it and how it applies to their life. – This is truly where the magic happens.

Have a child who is burning through money? “A penny saved, is a penny earned. ” Benjamin Franklin

Do you have a child who continually doesn’t reach their goals? “When it is obvious that the goals cannot be reached, don’t adjust the goals, adjust the action steps.” – Confucius

Struggling with a friend? “There is nothing on this earth more to be prized than true friendship.” St. Thomas Aquinas

You can use ANYTHING for copywork. Even a favorite work of literature.

Because learners must take their time and COPY neatly, or be asked to re-do the work, the opportunity to praise is built in! Well selected copywork provides opportunity for discussion on CHARACTER and behaviors that make for good students as well as good humans!

If they don’t see the connection between the quotes and their life, keep trying. The connection will happen. “I’m sorry you don’t have money for a new Lego set. Remember when we did that copywork about a penny saved and earned? How do you think that might help? ”

September 28/29th (depending on the website referenced) is Confucius day. Confucius is the UTIMATE of all teachers. He represents exactly what it means to educate without discrimination. Confucius never refused a student because of his social standing. His only requirement was that his students possess a desire to learn.

Not to compare myself to someone so great, but this too is all I want in a student, that they possess a desire to learn. I hope if they have somehow lost their way I can inspire them with a little old-fashioned copywork.

In honor of his teachings, I put together this Copywork Pack of 7 different Confucius Quotes you can use in your home or classroom. There are also links / QR codes to short, informational videos about Confucius so your learners can get a sense of who he was as a person, and why the things he sad so long ago matter.

We have several different copywork items available on your preferred shopping platform. Including a set of FREE copywork for Juneteenth.

If you would like access to more FREEBIES, consider joining our CURRICULUM CLUB. You can sign  up fast and Free by clicking HERE – You will get access to our Member’s only area and our Happy Hive Newsletter once a Month!

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Be sure to visit your favorite shopping platform to purchase more great curriculum:

Click on image to visit my Amped Up Learning Store
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With Love,

“Mrs. Crabtree”

Never Forget

19 years…. I was born in New Jersey. Moved to California when I was six. But if I click my heels three times and say: “There’s no place like home” I will end up in my Aunt’s kitchen in New Jersey… my summer home all my growing years.

We went to “The City” often. There is only one “City” and it is THE city. Not to mention when the plan lands in Newark the famous skyline was always my first welcome home. My last visit was 21 years ago for my honeymoon. In some ways I want to remember THAT – perhaps I will visit THE CITY again.

Until I do, the television in my mind replays the events of 19 years ago. The odd reason I turned on the television at 6 am in the first place. My inability to understand that was a commercial airliner and not something like a Cessna or a bigger version, but NOT a commercial airliner. I can remember riding to work and hearing the first tower fell. I couldn’t comprehend what that meant either. I felt 10 years old. I can’t imagine the reality of the city. I still can’t imagine their reality.

September 11, 2001 I was the worst teacher I have ever, ever been in my entire LIFE. I didn’t say ANYTHING to my students. Not a word. I waited for recess to call my Aunt to make sure all my cousins were ok. They were, – just “stranded” trying to get out of THE city.

There were people far more critically impacted that day but I was paralyzed. I taught like a robot. Went home and watched over and over still not understanding.

As I continued to work with children, I always gave them an assignment to interview an adult, to have the adult recall their memory of when they heard. The kids don’t understand, that assignment was, and always will be for the adults.

Those that lost their lives that day are just as valuable to our country as those of the Revolutionary war, Civil war, Vietnam, and every battle, war, conflict and military operation so that America remains a Free county. I have, and always will honor our Firefighter, Police and Military personnel who dedicate their lives to make our lives better, safer and free.

There are many activities out there to remember the events of September 11th. The simplest is to talk about it. Have your child call a relative and just ask them what they remember about this day 19 years ago. Call 2 or 3 and compare stories. Tell them YOUR STORY. Read books. Write letters to local police, fire and military – THANK THEM for their service.

I have no curriculum to sell you today. Just memories to share.

I hope your journey is blessed!

Mrs. Crabtree

Well Deserved Day of Rest and Relaxation

At the height of the Industrial Revolution in the late 1800s, most Americans worked 12 hour days and seven day weeks, just to get by. Even children as young as Kindergarten age were allowed to work in unthinkable conditions in many states. They were paid a fraction of their adult counterparts. People of all ages worked under less than ideal conditions often without breaks of any kind. 

Labor Unions began to appear and eventually after strikes, rallies, protests and even riots work conditions began to change. 

It wasn’t until  June 28, 1894 that Labor Day was a legal holiday in the District of Columbia and the Territories. 

Labor Day is now traditionally observed on the first Monday in September  as  tribute to the contributions and achievements of American workers. 

Homeschool Holiday is honored to offer Hardworking Homeschoolers, Teachers and Parents 30% off their curriculum and Family Fun needs – all with a Holiday twist! Today is the LAST DAY of Our Labor Day Sale – If you haven’t already shopped, you won’t want to miss out! Be sure to use the code TAKE5 at checkout for the extra 5% on Homeschool Holiday Curriculum!

Click the image to shop our SALE!

We hope your educational Journey is blessed!

Mrs. Crabtree

Humble Beginnings…and an EPIC giveaway!

Homeschool Holiday is built around my love of holidays, celebrating and making memories. Our “origin story” began Christmas 2009, when my homeschooled children did not want to take down the Christmas tree. This sparked the idea to design all our learning moving forward for 2010 around the holiday of the day. We decorated a mini table top Christmas tree for the big, well known holidays, but each day our learning would be different and new. I spent from January 26th until January 1st figuring out our plan for January… and launched from there! I researched books, movies, activities – whatever for each day. Our family scrapbook is filled with delightful pictures of that school year, more than any other year because of the special events and lessons we were using. My now grown children STILL talk about that special year (and our Disney Schooling year which followed in 2011) more than ANY other year (s) of homeschooling!

Parenting, Teaching, Mentoring… they are all about building relationships – forming connections. Holidays bring us closer as humans. Homeschool Holiday is designed to bring that into your home or classroom on a regular basis.

When I first began writing curriculum I was a brand new teacher. The curriculum, aka text books, I was “supposed” to use were not “quite right”. I noticed gaps, and my students were asking questions and seeking more information. I needed to research and supplement the basic textbooks. Some of it was downright boring. Very early in my teaching I had a class that seemed to come alive each time I spoke about myself and my interests – including my “crush” on a particular baseball player. (Hey – I wasn’t married yet!)

When Spring training started that year I decided to “Theme” some learning in my class surrounding Baseball. I had things I was supposed to teach, but no real “standards” forcing my hand like we do now. So I took my lessons and I made 5 different baseball themed activities. One for each day of the week. I split my class into 5 groups and we rotated through the activities, like primary classrooms did centers. The activity that stands out in my mind the most was called “Map the Majors”!

The students had a blank map of the US and a list of Major League Baseball teams. The students had to look up each team IN AN ENCYCLOPEDIA (there was no internet in schools!) and mark on the map where the team played. My students were completely engaged! I saw excitement for learning in ways I had never seen when I taught using the textbooks. Each year I began to add more and more of my own lessons and step away from the textbooks. By my last year in the classroom, the only textbook used was Math. Everything else was designed by other like minded educators or myself. I was BLESSED to work in a school that trusted my methods of connecting with students through curriculum in this way.

The “original” Map the Majors curriculum now available from Homeschool Holiday.
No Encyclopedias Needed!

I realize as I have taken Homeschool Holiday to market that I continue to write curriculum “for myself”… I write curriculum I would use in my home or classroom. The reality is… My last homeschooler is a senior in High School… he may be interested in one or 2 items, but not many. I am no longer working in a classroom, facing the day to day realities of an educator. I need to write curriculum for YOU!

The homeschool family

The classroom teacher

The parent who want’s to supplement

This Labor Day… Homeschool Holiday along with AMPED UP LEARNING is holding their BIGGEST SALE OF THE YEAR! From September 4th – 7th The entire Amped up Learning Marketplace is 25% off in honor of all your hard work as a homeschooler, teacher and parent…. on top of that Homeschool Holiday is adding an additional 5% with the code TAKE5 for a total of 30% off HOMESCHOOL HOLIDAY CURRICULUM.

In addition – I have partnered with Froggy About Teaching and Teacher Source for an amazing giveaway SPONSORED by Amped Up Learning. We are giving away Amazon gift cards, Amped Up Learning Gift Cards and product from each of our curriculum lines!

To enter we would love your FEEDBACK on a short survey... so as I said earlier… we can design Curriculum for YOU!

This survey is open to Teachers, Homeschoolers and Parents who provide an email address (you will also be placed on each of our newsletter lists) after completing the survey. Simply click the image below to take the survey and enter!

CLICK IMAGE TO TAKE SURVEY

Your email addresses will not be sold or shared and your feedback will be used for Froggy About Teaching, Teacher Source and Homeschool Holiday to bring you amazing K-6 resources to use in your homes and classrooms!

Thank you for your feedback and we hope your Educational Journey is Blessed!

Mrs. Crabtree

Be sure to visit your favorite shopping platform to purchase more great curriculum:

Homeschool Holiday logo : red school house with beehive and bee. There is a large tree to the right with three cartoon bugs flying in the air. One bug is red, the other is blue and the last is green. There is a happy face sun in the top right corner and green grass along the base. The image also contains the logo for the AMPED UP LEARNING marketplace.
Click on image to visit my Amped Up Learning Store

When your teeth land on the roof, I hope they land Straight!

Fairy Magic

There truly is nothing like fairy magic. Glitter. Pixie Dust. Whatever it takes. Fairies are meant to bring joy into our lives. (Unlike the Leprechauns who bring mischief.)

If you would like to read up on Fairies, Gnomes, and tInternational Fairy Day, June 24th you can HERE

Today’s holiday, National Tooth Fairy Day (also celebrated on February 28th), surrounds the western culture’s folklore that when children leave a lost tooth under their pillow, the Tooth Fairy comes to collect it and leaves them something in it’s place. In our home the first lost tooth was always rewarded with a new toothbrush as well as a $2.00 bill! The Tooth Fairy likes to leave a trail of glitter to show she has been in the house as well!

Because she is magic, she has the ability to do different things for different children, following rules of parents ( like perhaps no glitter in your house!) or leaving candy instead of money. She also leaves a variety of denominations. The tradition of leaving money comes from Northern Europe, where the tooth fee was paid when a child lost their first tooth. It has been recorded in the Old Norse traditions known as the Edda (a collective of Norse literary works circa 1200)

Tooth Fairy Around the World

The Tooth Fairy, and Loosing teeth is celebrated in different ways around the world. Here are a few of them.

In the United States, England, Australia and Denmark, children most often put their tooth under their pillow when they go to sleep . When they wake up, the tooth is gone and it has been replaced with $1.00 (or other amount)

In Ireland, Anna Bogle, A mischievous leprechaun girl who was playing in the forest one day and knocked out her front tooth. She does not like how she looks without it, but can’t put it back in. She get’s the idea to get a human child’s tooth to replace her own. Stealing is against the leprechaun’s code of ethics, so she must leave a coin in return. Anna keeps trying until she finds a tooth that will fit.

In many Spanish speaking countries like Spain, Argentina Guatemala, and Mexico they have the “Tooth Mouse”. In some of these countries the Tooth mouse takes the tooth out of a glass of water (after drinking it!)

Still another fun tradition is throwing your teeth onto the roof! In Greece, China, Singapore, and Vietnam, children who toss teeth try to get them to land straight. That’s because, if the tooth lands crooked, it is believed the new tooth will grow in crooked!

In Turkey they do not have any “fairy” Instead they believe a lost tooth holds a child’s future. The family chooses special place to bury the tooth so their dreams for their child will come true.

If you are able to talk to friends or family in different countries, ask them about their tooth fairy traditions and compare them to your own. Use the opportunity to BRUSH UP on good dental hygiene! If you haven’t seen the dentist – use this Holiday as the perfect opportunity to schedule your next appointment!

Easy Ideas for Celebrating the Day

A fun and Free activity for celebrating the day is toothbrush art. Have your learner create a painting with an old toothbrush instead of a traditional paint brush. Be sure to cover the area with plenty of newspaper if you will be attempting the splatter paint technique!

Whatever you decide to do, I hope you have enjoyed learning about some unique tooth fairy traditions from around the globe.

Be sure to sign up for our Member’s Only Area – the Happy Hive Curriculum Club:

Joining is easy, and It’s FREE! You get an Exclusive Freebie each month, previews of upcoming holidays and coordinating products, coupons and MORE! Just click the image below to sign up!

Click Image to Sign up for the Curriculum Club – FREE!

Be sure to visit our favorite shopping platform to purchase all our fun Holiday themed curriculum:

Click on image to visit my Amped Up Learning Store

I hope you learned something new. If you haven’t already, sign up to follow our blog so you get an email notification every time there is a new post. (Left side, very bottom SUBSCRIBE via email) That way you can come back again for another fun Homeschool Holiday because – there is always something to learn!

With Love,

“Mrs. Crabtree”

Source:

Soruces:

https://www.mentalfloss.com/article/58503/7-tooth-fairy-traditions-around-world

Going to Infinity and Beyond for Homeschool Resources!

Welcome back to another article in the Homeschool Holiday series of Educational Product Reviews. These are items you can use with confidence in your homes, co-ops and classrooms to meet the needs of your learners. Each of them are created by teacher-authors like myself (small, family oriented businesses)*.

Today I am delighted to introduce you to A-Z Infinity. Melanie Miller has graduated her 4 children from their homeschooling program and continues to be involved in homeschooling several of her grandchildren. Her products are designed for Pre-K through 3rd grades and have a very traditional approach to learning. Much of what is in the A-Z Infinity store is inspired by student need.

I have had the pleasure of using the Letter Recognition and Sound flash cards with a young learner in my homeschool program.

Each letter has it’s own card, the sound symbol, a word that illustrates the correct sound use (both the long and short sounds for vowels) and whether the letter is a consonant or a vowel. The cards also show capital and lowercase versions of the letters and a picture to illustrate the word chosen. We used these cards to introduce the alphabet in the order I personally use Sometimes called the “Satpin” method. With this method you  teach a mix of vowels and consonants using the following order:

S-A-T-P-I-N-M-C-B-R-L-F-E-H-D-J-G-W-O-U-V-K-Q-X-Y-Z

This way after just 6 letters you have a variety of three letter words you can use as reinforcement.

Sat, tin, pin, pat, tap, tip, pit, sit, nit, nip, nap, pan

The small, easy to print and use flash cards that come with this set are perfect for learners to manipulate into these easy 3 letter words!


In no time at all my learner and I were making all kinds of words. Most real, and some she invented (that’s perfectly normal if you are wondering!)

When Melanie is not creating curriculum or assisting in the homeschooling of her grandchildren she enjoys loom knitting, going on walks, gardening and spending time with her family. She has been a homeschooler for 24 years working with her own family, co-ops and private pre-schools. Melanie also provides families with tutoring services.

A-Z infinity takes pride in creating products that are easy to use with simple graphics. Some products are ink friendly which is especially important when printing at home. Melanie tries to give a variety of color, font and style options within products to increase their appeal to multiple learners.

You can check out all her products on Amped Up Learning and be sure to follow A-Z Infinity on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/teacherresources123/ 

Until next time – Be blessed friends!

Mrs. Crabtree

If you have questions about homeschooling or would like to supplement your child’s public/or private school education ,   Whatever journey you are on, I can help. Happy Hive Education Consulting is run by an experienced homeschooling Mom with a California Teaching credential. This unique combination of experience allows for a customized partnership between her family and yours.

  (Check out what others have to say HERE)

Reach out and CONTACT ME anytime!

*Disclosure regarding the “EDUCATIONAL PRODUCT REVIEW” series: Homeschool Holiday/ Happy Hive Homeschooling does not accept any payment for reviewing products from other Teacher Authors. I do recieve the product being reviewed and provide my HONEST, educated opinion about how the product can be used with my target audience: Educators in all their forms: Parents, Homeschoolers and Teachers.

I will be linking to Teacher-Author blogs and the stores in which they sell many their products. Purchase at your own risk. My opinions are my own and meant to help guide your curriculum and educational decisions.

Back to School Sale on Amped up Learning!

The Back to School sale is in full SWING on Amped up Learning. All Homeschool Holiday products are 25% off with no coupon code or hashtag needed. The discount will be taken in your cart!

As a matter of fact – all the AMAZING teacher authors I have featured on the blog (AND MORE!) have their stores on sale! The sale is site wide and we worked extra hard to get our REMOTE READY (distance learning) as well as Face to Face products loaded and downloadable for you!

We know times are uncertain, and your new protocols are just being rolled out. Homeschool Holiday has what you need to help develop those relationships from the start. Fun, engaging products that student’s love!

Head over to the Amped Up Learning Facebook page and enter to win great prizes!

$25 Amped Up Giftcard, a shirt/sticker combo, and 2 face masks.

To enter:

1. Like & Follow Amped Up Learning on Facebook

2. Comment the grade level you teach or subject

For additional entries:

• Share the post to your page or stories and tag Amped Up Learning

• Tag a Teacher or Home School family (1 entry per comment)

3 Winners will be drawn at 9AM CST on Monday, August 3rd!

Teachers impact other Teachers

My husband is a Truck Driver. Thankfully he is a local driver and he is home each night. He did do a “run” as a long- haul driver during our younger homeschooling years and it was an adventure for sure. I have SO MUCH RESPECT for this profession. The reason I am telling you this is, driving around all day, he has a LOT of time on his hands… He would listen to audio books while driving, but now listens to pod-casts. Every week he sends me a text message with something like – listen to this, I think you will like it.

FINALLY, Turn around is fair play!!! I am dying to send my husband the link to THIS PODCAST because I AM ONE OF THE GUESTS!

Homeschool Holiday, as well as two of my closest Amped Up Learning contributor friends had the pleasure of being featured on the Inspiring Teachers Podcast. It is also broadcast on YOUTUBE if you would like the visual!

My journey into commercial curriculum writing has gifted me with so many blessings, there truly is no way to measure my success.

Danny Hauger has a store on Amped Up Learning Marketplace called Hauger History. He also hosts not one, not two – but THREE podcasts:

Inspiringteachers.Podbean.com  where he and Tavis Beem provide, as the name implies, Inspiration for fellow teachers.

The other podcast,   Haugerhistory.podbean.com is where he provides overviews of his social studies products.  

small-square-hauger-history-logo-hhp.png

And https://dannyhauger.podbean.com/ for music! Free music and interviews weekly! Enjoy free singer-songwriter songs from Danny Hauger music. Hear interviews with inspirational people and get free music and entertainment by subscribing today! Share and help support indie music for the world!

I’m not sure when Danny sleeps… (or grades papers!)

The Inspiring Teachers Podcast specializes in interviewing leading educators from around the world. I was able to share how Holiday teaching can impact not only homeschoolers, but classroom educators as well. With over 20 years of teaching experience, and curriculum writing under my belt (published or not, I have been writing my own curriculum since day 2 when I was not satisfied with what was in the curriculum I was using!) I would agree with Danny and Tavis – I am indeed a “leading educator” from around the world.

Danny’s podcasts are easy to listen to, as he is a natural in broadcasting. I’ll go ahead and call a spade a spade. Totally biased here because Danny is a former Los Angeles Angels broadcaster and anyone with the Angels is a friend of mine! Danny also believes in using his voice to help young people realize their potential. He admits to veering of the “path” based on what his students are interested in which is also near and dear to any homeschool philosophy.

Danny will have a special place in Heaven reserved for the Middle School and High School teachers. He has spent 6 long agonizing years with them… ha ha no, I put that in there. Danny LOVES it. And uses his podcast with fellow teacher Tavis Beem to help teachers of all levels gain experience and an empowering uplifting message of positivity.

The list of Danny’s talents doesn’t end… and I *thought* this post was about MY debut on a podcast..but I can’t wait to get my hands on this BOOK! Danny has given EXCLUSIVE Amped Up Learning pricing of $2.99 and it contains his best ideas of how to alter your voice to reach more students and help them reach their potential. This is NOT just for classroom teachers… even a MOM wants to help her children reach their greatest potential, and well, frankly we use our voice too!

Episode #99 of INSPIRING TEACHERS is ready for your listening and viewing pleasure. In this episode we discuss the joys of teaching in hopes of reminding all educators why we were called to teach. We also share some of our best moments teaching in classrooms, (or homes!) and share a tool or idea to help make the listener’s classrooms more engaging.  I do hope you will check it out!

Head over to Amped Up Learnning Today through Monday and save on EVERYTHING in the Online Marketplace – including the book – Broadcaster’s Secrets and the Oreo products I mention in the podcast!

Easy solution to the start of your Homeschool Day.

Routine

I see floating all over the internet the same question. How do you begin your homeschool day? I have an answer for you. Everyone HAS an answer for you… just put your feet on the floor and get going ! Remember you are reading the blog of the woman who just keeps saying, there is no wrong way to homeschool. There isn’t.

But I do 100% believe in routine. Perhaps that’s why I loved teaching. The bells provided structure and predictability. I like to know what to expect. So if I can give you advice on how to begin your homeschool day… just begin it the same way every day. I will share with you two AWESOME products I created ( of course they are awesome, I created them giggle, giggle!) that we used every day, and even year after year. (cough, cough…even when my “bugs” had outgrown the activities, they were comforted by the routine and did it anyway!)

Change of Grade Day

I just LOVE the beginning of the school year! Even though at the Happy Hive we say learning never ends and we school all year we do celebrate what we call our “Change of Grade Day”.

Usually Labor Day weekend, or Labor day itself because my husband would be off we would take a Field trip! The first day of Homeschool seemed appropriate with a field trip! It was our “not back to school celebration”.

For the past 2 years, as the kids have all been high school teenagers, our trips have been to Disneyand… but I did get my pictures!

They were not too old to enjoy pre-school snacks. And my Mommy heart gladly paid for the overpriced treat.

(I love that when we go out sometimes people comment about my “girls” My son has beautiful hair. When I ask why he is growing it or if he wants to cut it – he doesn’t have answers, but it is his hair! )

Who doesn’t want their back to school picture with the headless horseman? They don’t have enough fingers to hold up like in the old days. But in September of 2019 I had a College freshman, A Senior in High School and a Junior in High School.  We had no idea what the future held (you never really do!)

I’m not one of the “GRADE” sign makers… I had them use fingers. It worked great, until as I said, they ran out at 10, lol. I think the sign makers have me beat!

2012 (6th grade, 5th grade and 4th grade)

2009 – The first year I started using fingers to indicate grade level.

2007 Preschool, Kindergarten, First Grade. They wanted to “walk” to school. So we went around the block. Didn’t last long!

School Keepsakes

I have a few treasured keepsakes from over the years. It really is great to look back. Perhaps you remember our 10 year time capsule. We packed a lot of memories into that box. The REVEAL was so much FUN!

If you have started your own time capsule in 2020, or perhaps you got sidetracked, but intended to start – have no fear. I have a GREAT resource for you!

The PASSAGE OF TIME and WHAT’S THE WEATHER? Weather tracking activity will get you started.  These two products are items tried and true in our school, year after year. I have polished and perfected them after years of putting together this and that.

Here’s how they work:

At the beginning of the school year (or the beginning of the calendar year) children fill out an “About Me” page.

There is one specific to homeschooling, and there are general “about me” pages. There are several to chose from including one for “older” learners.

These are fun to keep year after year. Does the favorite food stay the same???

Then I have my kids draw a self portrait. You can also include their official school picture. But their drawings at the beginning, and again at the end of the year are really fun.

The next element to the memory book are calendar pages. I created color pages and black and white pages. I have primary pages in which the youngest of learners simply trace the date each day and color the decorations either at the beginning of the month, end of the month or any day as time permits. Older learners use the calendar to track time – family birthdays, appointments, lessons, – it’s their “personal planner”. Use those calendars anyway you see fit. I felt it was essential my kids knew how to track time using a traditional “paper” calendar.

(12 months shown – 17 months included!)

(simply re-download the file each August for new primary dated files)

There is also a Gratitude calendar. Each day I had them write something they were thankful for. We didn’t do this every year, but once or twice over the years is enough. You can even use the color calendars for this activity so it is more of a keepsake.

On the first school day of the month, or on the first of the month, however it works out – I had my children write their name in their BEST writing, and the name of the month as well. There are a variety of levels and “Starts” for the months. There is even a blank if you start completely mid-year.

This activity pairs SO PERFECTLY with our WHAT’S the WEATHER?  As part of your child’s daily routine of checking the calendar and writing the date, it is a great habit to also check and record the weather. Use the 24 different icons to record weather related events for 1 week, 2 weeks or the entire year. (I really lean toward the entire year!)

I know what you are thinking… Earthquake is not “weather” – However, if you are recording for a year that’s a pretty significant event along the lines of hurricane and tornado, so I wanted to include it.

After recording the weather for the month create a graph of the most common weather events:

After tracking the weather all year you then create a similar graph. Won’t it be fascinating to see the most common weather over time?

The set also includes larger “classroom calendar” sized weather icons you can display for Today’s Weather.

By investing just 5 minutes each day you will have a wonderful keepsake at the end of the year!

Passage of time $3.00 and What’s the Weather $ 3.50- Purchase during the Back to School Sale and save 25% automatically!

I’m sure you can tell I’m excited and passionate about these products. I actually used them in my classroom as well! Every morning upon arrival students had to write the date, record the weather and on the first day of the month, write their name and the month in their best writing. These “packets” went home at the end of the year and were a great way to show progress over time!

Thank you for choosing Homeschool Holiday to supplement the curriculum you are using in your homes and classrooms!

May your Educational Journey be Blessed!

Mrs. Crabtree

Music in YOUR homeschool- Yes indeed!

So far in my product review series I have addressed some of the more “challenging” subjects for homeschool families to address curriculum wise: Writing, Upper Level Math, Science, & Foreign Language (Spanish).

Today we are going to look at Music! It’s so much more than “do, a deer, a female deer” and listening to a variety of music through a streaming service! You can provide lessons and a trip to the library…but what if you want your learners to really learn music, and music theory? In waltzes Music in Our Homeschool .

Getting to know the Music Teacher

Gena is a homeschool mom with 8 children. She holds a Bachelor of Music Education as well as a Masters in Vocal Pedagogy (teaching music) and has spent many years teaching music in schools and homeschool settings. Gena loves music and wants to share that passion with others. She has a full blog, online courses and TONS of freebies on her website Music in Our Homeschool.

Music in Our Homeschool provides:

Online music courses

Reviews of music products

FREE music products and lessons

Helpful tips for including music in your homeschool

They also have a FULL store of products published under: I choose Joy Publishing.

A complete curriculum for under $30

I had the pleasure of receiving “A Folk Song a Week” curriculum for Elementary. This in itself is a COMPLETE curriculum, easy to use and requires absolutely NO music ability whatsoever! It’s perfectly homeschool friendly, and as a classroom teacher, I would absolutely keep this on hand for “emergencies”!!

A Folk Song a Week elementary music curriculum
$27.00 for all 36 weeks of curriculum

Each folk song has printable PDF lyrics and sheet music as well as background music about the song. There is a link to a video of someone singing the song and 3 variations of copywork practice. (Not familiar with copywork? You can check out my post about it HERE) There is also a related coloring page you can use and suggestions for supplementing the song with literature when possible. This curriculum explores classic songs like Take me out to the Ball Game, and Oh Susanna. Music that is appealing to learners of all ages and not stuffy by any means.

I was completely impressed with the care that went into this curriculum. (So much so I signed up for the free course sampler, see below.)

So much more than written curriculum

If you want to dive even DEEPER – Music in our Homeschool offers fully online courses. There is even a 20 course sampler you can try for FREE. The sampler is for multiple ages and dabbles in all the courses offered by Music in Our Homeschool. After my students and I finish exploring the sampler and the folk songs this fall, you can bet we will be taking more of Music in Our Homeschool ‘s courses. I am can not carry a tune if it is strapped into a car seat, and with the curriculum purchased (and freebies) through Music in Our Homeschool & I Choose Joy publishing, I’m a rock star! I’m certain you will find similar, if not better results.

It’s delightful curriculum, and I love not only Gena’s enthusiasm for what she does… I find parallels in her love for music in my love for holidays! I also found it completely thrilling that another business has created multiple facets in the way I have. Gena has I Choose Joy as well as Music in Our Homeschool, while I have Happy Hive Homeschooling and Homeschool Holiday... we are kindred spirits you might say!

Until next time – Be blessed friends!

Mrs. Crabtree

If you have questions about homeschooling or would like to supplement your child’s public/or private school education ,   Whatever journey you are on, I can help. Happy Hive Education Consulting is run by an experienced homeschooling Mom with a California Teaching credential. This unique combination of experience allows for a customized partnership between her family and yours.

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Reach out and CONTACT ME anytime!

*Disclosure regarding the “EDUCATIONAL PRODUCT REVIEW” series: Homeschool Holiday/ Happy Hive Homeschooling does not accept any payment for reviewing products from other Teacher Authors. I do recieve the product being reviewed and provide my HONEST, educated opinion about how the product can be used with my target audience: Educators in all their forms: Parents, Homeschoolers and Teachers.

I will be linking to Teacher-Author blogs and the stores in which they sell many their products. Purchase at your own risk. My opinions are my own and meant to help guide your curriculum and educational decisions.