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curriculum reviews, homeschooling, math

Math-U-See AIM for Multiplication Review

Disclosure: I received this complimentary product through the Homeschool Review Crew.

Math-U-See Logo

I was thinking my children could use a little help with multiplication facts, so I wanted to try Accelerated Individualized Mastery (AIM) for Multiplication with a Bridge to Division from Math-U-See. I have always wanted to try something from Math-U-See, but never had. I was very excited to use this when given this opportunity.

I really like to give my children a solid foundation with multiplication fact mastery, but some of my children struggle with the memorization. My 10 year old daughter, Evie is working on multiplication now and is learning them, but does struggle with some. My 8 year old son, Thomas is just starting multiplication. He catches on very quickly to math concepts. I thought using this program with them together would be very good for both of them.

I am very impressed with the amount of information that is in this curriculum. There is a very helpful teacher’s guide, and manipulatives, and there is an online portion with videos and printable worksheets. The teacher’s guide breaks down each lesson into 4 segments and tells you how to teach that lesson step by step.

I was quite overwhelmed at first with how much there is to this program, but once I started it and just followed the directions it was easy to use. Most importantly, my kids like it. They like the ability to physically see and touch how and why multiplication actually works. Learning the “why” in math makes a huge difference in remembering it. When you finally realize why math works like it does you no longer need to memorize.

This program is considered accelerated because you can move at your child’s pace. If they know it you can move on, if they need more time to learn it you are encouraged to stop and review until you feel your child is ready for the next concept. I love this! I don’t like to move at the pace of a curriculum if my child is not ready. We try to always go for mastery not time period. With AIM Multiplication it was easy!

Evie and Thomas already started multiplication so the first few lessons were very easy. We looked at 2’s, 10’s and 5’s. The next lesson is 9’s. We will be here for a little while. They have their own tricks we taught them and can come up with the answer, but not quickly or with mastery. I think spending some time here in the curriculum they will be able to recall the nine times tables quickly.

I really like to visual you get for 9’s. You use the ten blocks and take some away by turning some upside down. I think this is a great way to see and remember.

You can find Math-U-See on these social media platforms:


Many other families on The Homeschool Review Crew had the opportunity to also review this product. Please click on the graphic below to see what they though of it and how they used it.

Math-U-See Accelerated Individualized Mastery (AIM) for Multiplication with a Bridge to Division Reviews

curriculum reviews, grandbabies, homeschooling

The Crafty Classroom: Superstar Spelling Review

Disclosure: I received this product free through the Homeschool Review Crew

For the last several weeks, we have been using Superstar Spelling from The Crafty Classroom to review our spelling words in a fun way.

This year I have had the privilege to be able to help my grandchildren with their school. Our local public school has been back in person since January. They go 4 days a week. The other day they are with me and have some homework to do. My granddaughter was having a tough start with spelling words this year. Superstar Spelling arrived right in time. We take some dedicated time on Mondays to work on her new words for the week. Tuesday through Thursday we review and get ready for the spelling test on Friday.

Her teacher sends home some workbook pages to practice her spelling words. I added in some of these fun sheets for some variety and they have worked really well. Her spelling test scores have greatly improved. I’m very glad that I had the opportunity to do this review at this time.

I received Superstar Spelling as a downloadable PDF. It is editable in Adobe Reader. This was great because all I needed to do was type in her spelling words and they auto-populated throughout the documents. You can add up to 20 spelling words. I just needed to print! Each week I typed her new words in and printed. So easy. There is a suggested Monday-Friday schedule to follow to use all the worksheets in one week. The worksheets print in this order.

Here are a few examples of the worksheets we used. There are many more- 30 pages of activities. There are even games: bingo and chutes and ladders you can use to practice spelling words.

My granddaughter thought this one was fun.
We used scrabble tiles instead of stamps.
This was fun to use bingo markers or just color with crayons.

I think this is a great, customizable resource for studying spelling words. It gives the student lots of practice, but there is enough variety to keep it interesting.

I am a huge fan of The Crafty Classroom. Their products have worked very well for us. I have especially love R.E.A.D. Curriculum Notebook. This is what I have used to teach my youngest two children to read. This is what I’m using for my son this year. His sister used it a few years ago. They both progressed wonderfully at the pace of the curriculum. By the end of the school year they read very well. You can find my review here. Another fun thing we have used of theirs is the Pattern Block Activity Pack. The Crafty Classroom has so many great things on their website drawing, play dough, Bible, geography, even freebies.

You can find The Crafty Classroom on these social media sites:


Many other families on The Homeschool Review Crew had the opportunity to review products from The Crafty Classroom. Click on the graphic below to see what they thought of Superstar Spelling, Fine Motor Alphabet Bundle, and the Tracing Bundle.

Fine Motor Alphabet Bundle, Superstar Spelling & Tracing Bundle {The Crafty Classroom Reviews}
crafting, Friday’s Favorite

Friday’s Favorite Crochet Site

Here’s another one of my favorites this Friday:

My favorite crochet site is

I love the challenges that Mickey and his crew have given me.

The crochet-a-longs are so much fun! I have been crocheting a very long time and I have learned so many new stitches and techniques. I do get frustrated with some but everything has written directions, charts and videos. I quickly (most of the time quickly) learn what I need and continue on. 🧶

curriculum reviews, homeschooling

Excellence in Literature Handbook for Writers ~ Review

Disclosure: I received this product free through the Homeschool Review Crew

If you are looking for a writing reference tool for your high school student, check out Excellence in Literature Handbook for Writers from Everyday Education. This is a comprehensive 420 page reference guide. It is one resource for all your writing needs. Excellence in Literature Handbook for Writers is a great tool for high school and college students and also great for a teacher or a proof reader. It is also a great place for a middle school student to start.

This handbook is divided into two sections. The first one is about different types of writing with many examples. This includes essays and debates. The second section is about the actual mechanics of writing. Here you will find sentence structure, tenses, verb agreement, etc.

Writing has been one of those subjects where my kids either love it or hate it. It either comes naturally or they would rather do anything else in the world then write a sentence or two. Even my natural writers don’t like to be stifled with boring, tedious rule learning. As their teacher, I feel I have two choices: make it fun or torture them. I hope they would agree that I chose to make it fun.

Teaching writing can be hard. If they love it, we will follow that path. If they do not like it, we can say they learned it and move on. In teaching little ones to write, I ask my children to make up a story and we write it and illustrate it. They see this as fun. As they get older, I encourage my children to continue to do creative writing on their own. I like to read them and critique a few things, but never in a discouraging way. I think once their confidence is taken away, it’s harder to continue to write.

As they enter the high school years it’s time to get a little more serious about writing. Usually at this age my children have a good idea about what direction they would like go after high school. If they are thinking it may be college we begin to look at the different types of writing assignments they will have in college and start to prepare for it.

Most colleges will have an English 1 class that will go over all of this again. Students can not depend on that class since their other instructors are assigning papers from the beginning. A good foundation in writing can take you far.

Excellence in Literature in Writing Handbook is a great resource to begin to build great writing habits in high school and a great reference tool for college and beyond.

I usually prefer books that I can hold in my hand, but this one that I have enjoyed having it in a digital format. One, it would be a very big book and two, I like that I can utilize the search feature to find things quickly.

I used the first section of the guide to pick a type of writing to focus on for our next assignment, and used the second section to help with the grammar side of it. It is definitely a useful and comprehensive tool to have. It can build a great base beginning in middle school, move on to bigger, more complicated assignments in high school and serve as a reference for college and beyond.

You can find Everyday Education on these social media sites:

Facebook: &

Many others on The Homeschool Review Crew had the opportunity to review this handbook also. Click on the graphic below to see what they thought of it and how they used it.

Excellence in Literature Handbook for Writers {Everyday Education Reviews}

Allsaid & Duun: The Reading Game Review

Disclosure: I received this product free through the Homeschool Review Crew

As a huge fan of gameschooling, I was thrilled to receive The Reading Game, 2nd Edition from Allsaid & Duun, LLC. I was even more convinced to give it a try when I saw that Kenneth Hodkinson, author of Wordly Wise was the creator of this game.

My son Thomas is 8 and reading is just starting to click for him. I let my children learn to read at their own pace and when they are ready they usually excel and meet or pass grade level quickly. I knew he was ready to read this year when he was getting frustrated that others had to read for him and he was writing more and asking how to spell things. We started slowly with a phonics program in September. Things started to click pretty quickly for him and he is reading short books. We have added The Reading Game as part of his daily reading curriculum.

He is definitely not a worksheet guy, so I use games a lot for reinforcement. I was pretty sure he would like this game and I was right. He is great with hands on things and has a fun, competitive spirit. We dove right into this game. We have enjoyed that it is self-paced. If he needs more practice with some words, we hang back and practice them more.

We started with level one. All of the items in that level are red. We got out all the cards with the number one on it. It is 10 cards with 5 words. He read the words and we took a few days to play matching games with them until he was ready to move on. Then we added the next 10 with the number two on it. After he mastered the number one and number two cards, he was able to read the first larger card that goes with it.

He repeated that process through the number three/four cards and the number five/six cards. He challenged himself to do the memory game with all of the cards from all six levels. It took a while and he was very proud of himself when he was done. As his opponent I was very glad the cards had numbers on the back to help us.

He has completed all of book 1 and has started book 2. He’s pretty proud of himself. He likes to be able to look and see how far he has come. Each book/card set teaches your child 30 new words. By the end of book 6 they have learned 180 words, many of them Dolch and High Frequency words. This is a fun way to learn those site words that phonics just doesn’t work for.

I am looking forward to working through this whole set with Thomas. It has been a very positive learning experience for him and he is gaining so much from it.

You can find The Reading Game on these social media sites:

Twitter: @thereadinggame2 –
Instagram: @thereadinggame –
Pinterest: @TheReadingGame —

Do you want a copy of the Reading Game for yourself?  Head over to the Homeschool Review Crew Blog to enter the giveaway! The Crew will be giving away FIVE games.  Not sure yet if the game is for you?  Read more of the crew reviews, then enter the giveaway!”

Many other families on The Homeschool Review Crew had the opportunity to review this game also. Click on the graphic below to see how they used it and what they thought of it. Also it will take you to where you can enter the giveaway.

The Reading Game, 2nd Edition {Allsaid & Duun, LLC Reviews}