Homeschooling Is a “Labor of Love”

TOS Subscription SaleI love homeschooling, but sometimes I let it get  a little overwhelming, especially when my “perfect” plans for the school just doesn’t work out the way that I imagine. Last year I was a part of the TOS Crew, a group of dedicated moms who review curriculum so that you get a clear idea of the best resources for your money, and I got an inside look at how TOS operates. And I’ve been very impressed.

This Labor Day holiday, The Old Schoolhouse is having a  “Labor of Love” subscription sale —  a celebration of our commitment to homeschooling. They are offering a one-year print subscription for just $7.95 or a one-year plus current issue print subscription for only $12.95!

My year of reviewing products and seeing how dedicated the staff at  The Old Schoolhouse impressed me so much that I decided to take the subscription for their magazine. And that was one of the best things that I did for myself last year! Reading about other parent’s challenges (and unexpected triumphs) while homeschooling really helped me to understand that life happens to all of us, so stop stressing and start adapting to fit the new situations.

And I was surprised to see how interested in the magazine my own children were. I literally have to sneak the magazine in if I want to read it in peace! My eldest likes the stories about other homeschooling families and their children. My middle girl likes to look at the advertisements and see how she can spend my money. And little man just likes us to chase him around the house as we try to get the magazine back from him!

So from August 31 through midnight PDT on September 15 you and your homeschool group can take advantage of  TOS’ crazy prices and join the fun of “steal the bacon” with your family! The sale starts August 30 at midnight  and it will end on September 15 at midnight. Here are your subscription choices:


There are only 5,000 of these subscriptions available— once they’’re gone, they’’re gone. The sale could end before midnight on September 15th if they  reach 5,000. So spread the word and grab your own — the encouragement alone more than covers the subscription price.

Download Your Free Autumn Gift from TOS

As a member of the TOS Crew I get lots of great products to review.  And now it’s your turn! This week TOS has given non-TOS Crew members a great autumn gift.   Autumn Treasures is now available for free download. This is a lapbooking project that highlights the beauty, science and cooking that occurs during the autumnal season.

A few weeks ago I told you about my new love of lapbooking. If you haven’t tried lapbooking yet or are looking for a new one to start, be sure to click on the Autumn Treasures picture on the right side of this page (or click here). That will take you directly to your download.

Have fun!

Web Design for Kids

Web design is one of the skills that I want my children to learn. Not only is it a great creative outlet for writing and drawing (my daughters love the Paint feature on the computer), but it will probably be a standard skill requirement as they enter the job market. Although I’ve been working on my own website the last six months, I’m by no means ready to explain how it all works, especially since some of it is still a mystery for me! But never fear, because Click Drag Solutions has already provided me with the perfect solution.

If you’re looking for a great introduction to land of HTML, look no further than “Web Design for Kids (and Curious Grown-Ups!)”. This instructional DVD is about 45 minutes in length and normally retails for $40.00, but is on sale until the end of the summer for $19.99. In my opinion this program is definitely worth the price!

One of things I really like about this program is the pacing. The instructor has a relaxed teaching style that allows you to absorb the information as you work. For good typists, there will be no need to pause the DVD. Slower typists may have to pause a few times, but not to the point of being aggravated.

At no point is the training insulting to the children’s intelligence. This was very important to me because when my daughters were in cyber-school they were assigned games to do drill work. They also had programs to teach them about how to use the computer, spreadsheets and word processing programs. And my daughters hated having to log in for many of these programs. The voices were hyper-chipper and annoying. This instructional DVD doesn’t make that error. Parents can be in the same room with this program and not want to run screaming from the house.

The explanations are clear and concise. As he teaches you to build the website, the coding is right in front of you. He explains why each component is necessary and how to do basic troubleshooting. The DVD even has bonus sections explaining how to properly use file directories on a computer and basic file maintenance. I think the bonus section is very valuable because it will make the children’s lives much simpler as they get older and need to start separating their work out for portfolios and other work related projects.

I guess my only complaint would be that I would love to learn more web design, but so far this is the first and only video released. The next DVD in the series is in the works but no date has been set for release.

I definitely give this program a five star rating.

But since this program is designed for kids I decided to ask my daughters to do a short video interview about their experience with the program. I promised them that I wouldn’t edit anything, so you’ll see them in all their messy (and silly!) glory.  (Alaya’s eye antics were supposedly caused by “shyness” (not!). Actually I think she’s the budding comedienne in the family) lol!

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