Horizons Math: A Solid Homeschool Math Program (Review Crew)

Horizons Math 1st Grade Set - HomeWithPurpose.net

The new school year has arrived!

I’m in denial that my youngest is in 1st grade! How did that happen? I’m also still not as prepared as I should be, but we’re jumping in anyway, ready or not!

I’m partial to computer-based learning for math, especially in the upper grades, but one of the few textbook programs we’ve used and liked over the years for the lower grades is Horizons Math from Alpha Omega Publications. Just in time for the new year, I’ve been given the opportunity to review the Horizons 1st Grade Math Set. I received not only the two consumable student texts, but also the comprehensive teacher’s guide for this level from the publisher. Horizons 1st Grade contains 160 lessons and covers time, fractions, sets, graphs, sequencing, estimation, and more. [Read more…]

Classical Conversations: Challenging Your Student with a Classical Education by Leigh A. Bortins (Review Crew)

The Conversation: Challenging Your Student with a Classical Education - Home With Purpose

Y’all. I have been such a slacker this summer.

August is here, and I haven’t done a lick of preparation for the new school year! It’s kind of a big year too – Kaitlyn’s senior year and Kyle’s freshmen year, with Kendall and Kade in 4th and 1st. I’m not totally unprepared…I do have a general idea of what we’ll be doing and I have most (not all) of the materials we need, but I haven’t done any organizing or preparing. So, now you know how I’ll be spending the next couple of weeks, lol. [Read more…]

CursiveLogic: A Unique New Handwriting Method (Review Crew)

Cursive Logic - HomeWithPurpose.net

I have a confession to make.

This past school year was a bit hectic, and I neglected handwriting with my younger two, especially Kendall (9). It wasn’t until toward the end of the year when she asked about it that I realized I hadn’t taught her cursive yet! Definitely not my best homeschool mom moment… 😉

About that time, the opportunity to try out the CursiveLogic Workbook  came along. CursiveLogic is a new method of teaching cursive that relies on the inherent structure of the cursive alphabet rather than rote memorization. The company recognizes the importance of handwriting in cursive, which is becoming something of a lost art with all of our modern technology and digital forms of communication, and works hard to educate others on why it matters. Check out some of their resources on that here.

Here’s a few of the things that make CursiveLogic unique: [Read more…]

SmartKidz Media Library: Educational Summer Learning! (Review Crew)

Smartkidz Media Library for Homeschoolers


Summer is in full swing.

Our usual school schedule has fallen by the wayside in favor of decluttering, projects around the house, swimming, and playing outside. We do still try to keep up with some minimal practice in the “3 R’s”, and keep learning more informally through the summer months though.

Our subscription to SmartKidz Media Library for Homeschoolers has been handy in that respect. Created by SmartKidz Media, it’s a digital media learning library designed especially for homeschool families. It consists of not just educational videos, but also flash-animated eBooks, music, interactive study guides, and more. We were given the chance to try it out and tell y’all what we think about it.

The website is organized into categories ranging from “World of Discovery”, containing documentaries on nature, culture, history, travel, and more, to the “Fun Zone”, which has a variety of fun games and puzzles. There’s a large collection of resources for early learning with sing-alongs, interactive picture books, an entire section on baby sign language, and more. There’s also a section devoted to special needs that looks great. There’s even a health and fitness section with several Pilates and kid-friendly exercise videos!

Smartkidz Media main screen [Read more…]

CTC Math: Interactive Math for K-12 (Review Crew)



You may remember me mentioning CTC Math about a year ago.

CTC Math is a comprehensive online math tutorial program for grades K through 12. It features over 1300 animated and narrated math lessons, interactive exercises, diagnostic tests, instant feedback to students, detailed reporting for parents, and more. The 12 Month Family Plan offers unlimited access to all lessons at all grade levels for up to ten students for one price.

I used it for a good part of Kendall’s 2nd grade school year, and wrote about what I liked about it. I’ve once again had an opportunity to try out the 12 Month Family Plan, and this time I added Kyle (14) to the mix. He finished his math curriculum earlier this spring, and rather than start him on next year’s, I’ve had him working on CTC’s Pre Algebra and Algebra sections in preparation for next fall. So this time, I’m going to tell you what I think so far of the program in the upper levels. [Read more…]

Institute for Excellence in Writing: Comprehensive Writing Instruction for All Levels (Review Crew)

IEW Review

One of the things I’ve learned over the years is that no two children learn exactly the same way.

Writing came naturally for my oldest (now 16), and I simply used the assignments that came with our basic curriculum and never thought twice about it. I heard a lot of chatter about Institute for Excellence in Writing’s programs, especially Teaching  Writing: Structure and Style and the Student Writing Intensives (both included in their Deluxe Combo Teacher/Student Writing packages), but when I looked at it, it seemed overly complicated, time consuming, and too much trouble. Besides, what we had seemed to be working fine.

But, when Kyle (14) came along, it was obvious pretty quickly that writing didn’t come near as easily for him. We spent several years bouncing around to different writing curriculums and approaches. Some worked fairly well, others didn’t, but nothing ever seemed like the totally right fit. Then, a few years ago, I had the opportunity to review both Primary Arts of Language and Teaching the Classics from IEW, and learn more about the company and how their programs worked. I was very impressed!  [Read more…]