TOS Review: Happy Kids Songs (Ages 4-8)

Happy Kids Songs Review
Most younger kids love music, and my six-year-old certainly does, so reviewing Happy Kids Songs was a lot of fun for us. We received three sets of songs: Friends & Sharing, Happiness & Attitude, and Manners & Character. There are a total of seven sets, with other titles such as Social Skills & Bullying, Feelings & Fears, Practice & Success, Talking & Listening, and Respect & Responsibility.

We also received the Happy Kids Songs Workbook, which includes lyrics and activities for every song in the entire collection. When you purchase a download, you will also get access to free pages you can download for those songs. This is the same content that is in the Workbook. The Workbook is just all of those free pages (122) pre-printed and bound for you. Continue reading

TOS Review: Logic of English, The Rhythm of Handwriting, Manuscript

Logic of English Review
Today’s review is for the Rhythm of Handwriting Manuscript Complete Set from Logic of English. I don’t usually request review products in subjects in which the kids haven’t expressed an interest, but the boys’ other parent was concerned that they weren’t doing enough “school-like” things, so I thought handwriting for the five-year-old would be a good place to start. We won’t tell Dad that the boy actually (mostly) enjoyed the practice.

The Manuscript Complete Set includes one soft-cover student workbook ($18), a laminated manuscript quick reference chart ($10), one tactile card set ($28), and a student whiteboard ($9). The set sells for $65.

There are a variety of ways to use this program, and we almost used one of the suggested ways. 😉 (You know I have to do my own thing.) Blake’s fine motor skills still need some work (so do his gross motor skills, but that’s not relevant right now), so after trying the workbook for a couple of days, we decided to just stick with the whiteboard for now. It was much easier for him, not just because the lines are wider, but because the marker slides across the board easier than a pencil on paper. Continue reading

TOS: Scaredy Cat Reading System Level 1 (Pre-school)

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Today’s review is for the Scaredy Cat Reading System from Joyce Herzog, and let me tell you, I had trouble getting away from the kid long enough to write this review. Several times a day, since we received the program, he comes to me and says, “Mama, can we do my reading now?” Lest you think I’m neglecting him, we actually sit down every time and “do reading”. His attention span gets us through 30-45 minutes before he’s ready to move on, but he always wants to do more later.

Joyce Herzog separates the letters into groups according to how the sounds are made, rather than teaching the letters in alphabetical order. For example, B and D are two of the “first name” letters – the sound you hear at the beginning of their “name” is the sound they make. My 4-year-old has been wanting to learn to read for a couple years (he has a big brother he wants to keep up with), but nothing was helping the letters and sounds stick in his head. Part of that was that he just wasn’t ready, and part of it was that I couldn’t find a way to explain it to him so it made sense – to him (it all made perfect sense to me.) Continue reading

TOS Review: TouchMath (Pre-K)

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TouchMath is a multi-sensory math program for Pre-K through 2nd grade. It uses TouchPoints to help children connect an actual value to the numerals they see written. We used the Pre-K program. You can easily check out the other programs here:

TouchMath is a full math curriculum. Suggested usage is 4-5 days a week for 2-2 1/2 times your child’s age. (So for a 4-year-old, you would spend 8-10 minutes a day.) The program is a download of Sequence of Skills (particular to that level), lesson plans, worksheets, and Progress Monitoring Records to make it easy to record your child’s, well, progress in each unit. You also have the option of adding various manipulatives to your lessons. I’ll tell you how we used some of them, and list all of them with links at the bottom of the page. Continue reading

TOS Review: Flowering Baby (Ages 0-5)

I’m excited to have the chance to review the preschool curriculum from Flowering Baby. We used the Four to Five Years level of  Flowering Baby , but there are five levels available:

You can find samples of each program at the bottom of the page after clicking on the links above.
Flowering Baby Level 5 Flowering Baby is a full program meant for birth to five years that can be as structured or loose as you prefer. Lessons range from talking and dancing with your infant and activities to help develop his motor skills to preschool activities to learn basics such as numbers, letters, counting, weather, to practical life skills like basic Spanish (or any language you prefer), calling 911, learning his phone number, and sorting laundry or brushing his teeth on his own (well, maybe with a little help). The “lesson plans” are called “Guides” and they are just that. These are probably all activities that we would do come up with on our own to do with our children if we had nothing else to think about. In the real world however, we have a million things going on and we don’t always think of these things. I liked that, even while being a loose guide, it reminded me to sit down with my son and try new things. Continue reading