Monday, June 30, 2014

Homeschool Mosaics Review: Jump In: A Workbook for Reluctant and Eager Writers by Sharon Watson

Writing Skills Curriculum is something that I had begun to explore for the next school year, but I lucked out and a Writing Skills Curriculum opportunity landed in my sight. I was given an opportunity through Home school Mosaics to review a new Curriculum, Jump In by Sharon Watson, and "jumped" at the opportunity!

Joshua, my 12 yr old, has always enjoyed writing stories, since Kindergarten. He has begun a couple of short books, but hasn't ever really finished them. I am lucky that my husband is a good writer, but he isn't here during school hours to help Joshua navigate the writing skills. Joshua and I were hoping to find something that taught him the skills needed to expand his writing and begin in the Fall. We were both quite excited to receive "Jump In" in late May and begin earlier then expected.

About Jump In: 

Apologia Press’s Jump In is the writing curriculum your middle school student will use! Easy, bite-sized lessons guide your student through the complexities of writing persuasion, exposition, description, and fiction. The text is incremental, the tone is student friendly, and the assignments are very achievable. Teachers will enjoy the practical guides for grading and the fun writing-prompts program, 10-Minute Writing Plunges, found in The Lifeguard’s Locker.

With Jump In, your middle school student will learn how to:
• Write a how-to paper • Write a book report
• Write a persuasive essay • Conquer conclusions
• Brainstorm and organize points • Write a newspaper article
• Write a report with documentation • …and much, much more!

My Thoughts and Review: 

The Jump In Student Workbook is a 240 page workbook, enough instruction to cover 2yrs of Writing. Joshua and I dove into the curriculum together, a couple days after receiving the books.

The Student Workbook is laid out in an easy to understand and follow along format. Joshua is a "workbook kid" and he is enjoying the fact that "Jump In" is a curriculum that is very clear and concise, it makes him think about his writing and Jump In is giving him instruction in basic writing skills. We both are impressed with the assignments in the book, not too lengthy for the daily stuff. The assignments that take a bit longer, are to encourage the student in their writing and help them comprehend what and why they are writing. EXCELLENT assignments! The Student Resource index in the back of the Workbook, is a GREAT tool and addition to the Workbook.

The LifeGuard Locker is the Parent/Teacher Manual and contains the instructions and Answer Keys for many of the assignments. Lifeguard Locker also contains a Writing Plunge(prompts) Challenge for Sept-May. The Writing Plunge is something that I love because it is a 10 minute a day assignment and it gets the student thinking and writing quickly, something some writers have to do often, a great skill to have. I really appreciate the section of the manual that shows how to grade the writing assignments. The LifeGuard Locker is an awesome manual!

Overall: We are VERY satisfied and excited about Jump In curriculum! We are taking a break, but this will be our Writing Curriculum for the fall and going forward!! I must say I also learned a few things myself about writing through this program!

More info on Jump In and Writing with Sharon:

The Jump In Writing Curriculum is VERY affordable(one of my favorite features).
Student Workbook $30  Sample Chapter
The Lifeguard's Locker $10   Sample Chapter

Where to Find Writing With Sharon Watson online: 

Writing with Sharon Watson also has 2 other Writing courses for High School level students, check those out if you have students in High School.

Our family LOVES Writing with Sharon Watson program Jump In  and we hope you will check it out!

Check out what other reviewers are saying about Writing with Sharon Watson Programs at Homeschool Mosaics.

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Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Build A Menu: Summer Vacation Giveaway

Summer is here, WOOHOO! Summer means kids are home more and are "eating you out of house and home". Busy schedules and trying to keep the kids fed can be stressful. Do you menu plan yet?? If not, I can tell you first hand that Menu Planning helps me, not only time-wise, but budget-wise. IF you do, you have a good start, but there is something that could help you even more!

Build a Menu is an online Menu Planner that I have been using for 3 months already and I truly LOVE it! I have been a menu planner for over 7yrs, using an editable, Computer Generated Menu chart. I found Build a Menu a few months ago and it is a Menu Planner, Grocery List Planner and Recipes. Build a Menu helps you plan your weekly Menu in 5-10 minutes, including a Printable Grocery List for your Favorite Grocery Store.

One of my Favorite Features is that Build A Menu also has recipes for many different Lifestyle Eating Plans such as Gluten Free, Clean Eating, Vegetarian/Vegan, Family Friendly, Trim Healthy Mama, Low Carb and more!

Check out how easy it is to use:

Are you liking what you see?? How would you like to simplify your "Summer Vacation", SAVE TIME and most of all SAVE Money on your Food Budget? You can enter to Win a 6 month Subscription to Build a Menu!

Want to get started right away? Build a Menu offers Different Levels of Subscriptions. Check them out HERE!

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Wednesday, June 11, 2014

IMAX: How to Train Your Dragon 2

Looking for an action-packed weekend of fun for the whole family? Head to your local IMAX® Theater for the premiere of How to Train Your Dragon 2!

Starting this Friday, June 13th, the second chapter of DreamWorks Animation's beloved How to Train Your Dragon franchise is soaring to all IMAX theatres domestically in select engagements. The IMAX 3D release will be digitally re-mastered into the image and sound quality of The IMAX Experience®, creating a unique environment that will make audiences feel as though they are flying alongside heroic Viking Hiccup and his faithful dragon, Toothless.

Jay Baruchel, Gerard Butler, Craig Ferguson, America Ferrera, Jonah Hill, T.J. Miller, Christopher Mintz-Plasse and Kristen Wiig reprise their respective voice roles, joined this time by Academy Award® winner Cate Blanchett, Djimon Honsou and Kit Harington.

For more information about How to Train Your Dragon 2, please visit DreamWorks Animation's official website.

For IMAX Theater locations and local showtimes click here!

Disclosure: The information contained in this post was provided by IMAX. 

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