Magformers Review

Magformers Review

{disclaimer ~ Educents is a blog sponsor and provided Magformers for review}

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I have seen Magformers all over the internet but we have never owned a set until now.  I figured my kids would love them, but we had tons of open ended building toys and I just could’t get myself to buy another.  So, when Educents asked us to review Magformers I was thrilled!!

If I am being honest, I wasn’t quite sure the 30 piece set would provide enough for my kids to really get into. Boy, was I wrong. They have thouroughly enjoyed this set and have done TONS with it!

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I video taped Ladybug {age 6} as she was first exploring with the set so you could see her authentic reaction and how well she was able to follow the guide.  I was mainly looking for the clarity of instructions, her ability to follow them, and how the actual pieces stayed in place. Take a peek below to see her building two different things, the video is less than 2 minutes, and shows her very enthusiastic reaction to her success!


Here is the photo version…

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She began with the simple cube and then added a roof of triangles.

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After experiencing great joy and success, she decided to go for something big! She did this all on her own, in the video I began taping at this point, but she laid this entire thing out by herself, only needing me to help where she miscounted one row.

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She was absolutely thrilled with the result and I couldnt believe how sturdy it was!

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My boys love the Magformers too. We have had random creations almost daily since we got these.  Here is one of my favorites, made by my 13 year old son for my 9 year old.

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Final Thoughts…

I definitely recommend Magformers for a few reasons.  I love how sturdy they are, the creations don’t fall apart!  You can do a lot with a few pieces, we have the smallest set and it has already provided hours of play. I love the colors and the way you can add other sets onto your first set to keep expanding. The appeal to young and older kids is a big plus, it’s a great family toy. So much learning happens through play and this toy is no exception!

Want to Purchase Magformers?

Educents is offering an EXTRA 10% off for Magformers when using code: 1P10

Learning Multiplication with Spielgaben

Playful Learning with Spielgaben is our monthly post sharing Spielgaben in action!  If you missed the introduction to this series, you can see it here. We were given the Spielgaben set to review and are honored to have them as a blog sponsor.

Multiplication with Spielgaben

Exploring Multiplication

I decided to take this past month and explore multiplication with Ladybug, using the Spielgaben set.  She really enjoyed this and it was great timing, she was a little sponge!  I love exposing skills in a fun way, before they actually need to master the skills.

Math Manual, Chapter 3, Play 14: Making Chocolate Chip Cookies

Using the activity presented in the Spielgaben Math Manual, we worked with 2s, 3s, 5s and 10s {all done on different days}. We followed the same plan for each set and explored together in the same way each time.  We used the rings and small dots to explore, and made a new chart for each set.


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For 10s, I taught her to use a big dot to repreent 10.

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This was such a fun and simple way to expose her to the basics of multiplication.

Totally unrelated to multiplication, but isn’t her snowman cute!?!

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See more math fun we have had with Spielgaben!

Exploring-3D-Shapes-with-Spielgaben3[1] Exploring-Symmetry-with-Spielgaben22 Math-Play-with-Spielgaben---ideas-fo[1] Math-with-Spielgaben122

 Soma-Cube-with-Spielgaben22 Playful-Learning-with-Spielgaben-Sep Hands-on-Math-with-Spielgaben3_thumb Hands on 1st Grade Math with Spielgaben


See version 4.0 here!


Spielgaben offers a special discount to my readers, just send an email to [email protected] mentioning 1+1+1=1 and you will be provided with a discount coupon!

Friends and Heroes Homeschool Bible Study Curriculum Review and Giveaway

Friends and Heroes Homeschool Bible Study Review

We have loved Friends and Heroes for many years now.  They are currently a blog sponsor and sent us their new Homeschool Bible Study Curriculum to review!  It was great timing as I was ready for something new to try with Ladybug who is almost 7 and in 1st grade.  After looking at the initial lessons, I was thrilled!

I began using the curriculum with her a few weeks ago and so far it is a good fit for her.  She already loves Friends and Heroes so she was naturally drawn to it and very excited.

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Here are some details about the curriculum itself…

HSB pack full spread

  • Lessons based on video adventures and Bible stories children love.
  • Easy-to-use homeschool Bible study curriculum designed for students ages 7-11 years.
  • Active, creative lessons that help kids learn while having fun!
  • Helpful teacher’s guide.
  • All materials are printable and reusable (PDF files) and can be used with multiple students simultaneously or over multiple school years!
  • Loads of FREE online resources on our Children’s Website at to supplement your class time.
  • Read even more about this curriculum here!


Our experience so far…

I printed the first few weeks of the student pages and am keeping the teacher’s guide on my computer to reference. I put her papers in a 3 ring binder to make it easy for us to read together. 

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Ladybug is loving our discussions and the movies especially.  She loves work like the word search shown below so I am pulling resources from the Children’s Website mentioned above.  The curriculum itself is mostly discussion so far, with a bit of writing from the child.  She is one who really enjoys writing activities {NOT at all like my boys}!

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Below you can see one of her activities, which she did after discussing the Bible story about Jesus and Simon Peter and the fish! We had a GREAT discussion which stemmed from the curriculum, all about the disciples and how Jesus called them.  Her assignment was to illustrate “Jesus Loves Me” and as she did, we discussed this in depth.

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One thing I really love about this new Bible Study Curriculum is the options for purchase.  You can choose a DVD, a digital download, a pre-printed curriculum, and one with or without the DVDs {in case you already own them}.

We will be continuing on with this curriculum after this review, she is really enjoying it and I am loving our discussions.  We already loved the DVDs so this is a natural fit for us. I look forward to digging deeper into the curriculum with her.  I am so glad we got the chance to review this and can continue to use it in our homeschool.  Stay tuned, I bet you’ll be seeing more about us using it on Instagram or in my homeschool wrap-up posts!


Special Offers!!

Even better, there is an awesome promotion going on right now AND a special just for my readers!  These promotional offers will expire Feb. 5, 2016. The discounts below include Friends and Heroes curriculum resources for homeschoolers and churches. This includes the Homeschool Bible Study Curriculum!

Special Offers:

· 10% off any purchase of $50 or more

· 20% off any purchase of $125 or more

· FREE USA shipping on orders of $25 or more


Another bonus for you – with purchase, 1+1+1=1 readers exclusively can receive a special coupon to get $10 off their next Friends and Heroes order!


One of you is going to win 6 weeks of this awesome new curriculum {plus accompanying video}!

Enter using Rafflecopter below.  Giveaway ends February 3, 2016.  US and Canadian addresses only.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Homeschool Wrap-Up November & December 2015 ~ 1st, 4th, 8th

Homeschool Wrap Up 1st grade, 4th grade, 8th grade Nov and Dec 2015


You can see our detailed curriculum posts by clicking on the graphics below.

1st-Grade-Homeschool-Curriculum-Choi[1] 4th-Grade-Homeschool-Curriculum-Choi[1] 8th-Grade-Homeschool-Curriculum-Choi

{disclaimer ~ affiliate links are used}

All Together Learning




We do 3 subjects all together and really enjoy our time with our kids all together {most of the time}.

Daddy teaches Mystery of History which is awesome.  We fnally finished the 1st book and have moved on to book 2. We decided to save ink and use spiral notebooks with the kids and this was a great change!  The love their notebooks and their notes are even better!  Plus – no more printing for me! 

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Below you can see a glimpse of my prep time for book 2.  We use the Timeline Figures from Homeschool in the Woods.  I was printing, cutting and sorting {in baseball card sleeves} for our timeline notebook.

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We still love our Heroes of History books.  We are almost done with George Washington. We are still enjoying Liberty’s Kids DVDs, to help deepen our American Revolution knowledge.


You can see our entire World Geography plan here.  Daddy now teaches this too.  They finished all of South America and are well into North America now.  Everyone continues to enjoy this plan. Below is a peek at Daddy writing the notes on our board and that’s a picture of Ladybug’s USA page!

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1st & 4th Together Learning

Ladybug and Krash do two subjects together and it is working well!  We do Picture Smart Bible {K-3 Old Testament} and US Geography twice a week.

They absolutely love US Geography and I think it’s because they both really love coloring and they love birds.  Seeing the bird for each state is very exciting for them!

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We review all the states we have learned each day we do a new one, we use our USA Geography PowerPoint for this.  The PowerPoint show is a favorite and is really great for review.

We have added in a couple more resources to expand our US Geography learning.   The kids absolutely LOVE the awesome USA States song/video by Readeez.

We played Scrambled States for the first time and they really enjoyed it!

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    We also enjoy playing Sequence States and Capitals together!  If you don’t own this game and are working on states and capitals, I highly recommend it!

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      We are enjoying Picture Smart Bible together and have completed Deuteronomy/Joshua.

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      8th Grade

      Homeschool -8893  8th Grade Homeschool Curriculum Choices[3]


      Pac is by far my least photographed child because a majority of his schooling is done independently or with his Dad. I managed to get NO photos of him doing school at all!

      He does spend a lot of time doing this, so this picture of him is totally accurate. He’d spend way more hours per day playing the guitar {or his ukelele} if he could!

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      He is a pretty easy student and we are thankful.  Sure, we have issues, but overall he does what he is supposed to do. His dad oversees his math, spelling and science completely.  I oversee everything else.  Writing is the only subject I am still teaching directly.

      One of my favorite portions of his homeschooling is his reading.  He is currently Reading To Kill a Mockingbird.  His favorites are in bold.

      Here’s his completed list…

      All of his other subjects are going well, we are pleased with our choices for him this year.

      4th Grade

      Homeschool -8866  4th Grade Homeschool Curriculum Choices[4]


      In order to stay committed to his gymnastics he doubles up on his schoolwork 2 days a week so he can be free to practice the other 3 days. He really works hard on his two intense school days. Below he is working on one of his poems from First Language Lessons.

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      Science with Dad continues to be a favorite.  He really enjoyed making a volcano, of course!

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      I think they were exploring waves below..

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      He continues to do Life of Fred Math with Daddy, at a lower level than his Teaching Textbooks Math {he uses level 5}. We do LOF math to help him work on auditory processing skills.

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      We are almost finished reading Mighty Men together, which is a collection of short stories.

      He also reads books on his own at night and currently reading The Indian in the Cupboard.

      His reading list so far this year…

      1st Grade

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      She now does the following subjects with her Daddy: science, Growing with Gramar, & Life of Fred Math. I teach her the rest of her subejcts. Below you will see a few highlights from November and December!


      We do a few different things for math and our combination is working beautifully for her.  She continues to LOVE Life of Fred and is finished with book 2 and is enjoying book 3.

      Spielgaben is a great fit for her and we do about 2-3 lessons per week, mostly using the worksheets.  See our recent posts here…

      Hands on 1st Grade Math with Spielgaben Playful Math with Spielgaben December 2015


      Growing with Grammar and First Language Lessons are both wonderful and she enjoys both.  We use both because they are different, yet similar. She now does Growing with Grammar with her Dad so I don’t have any action shots!

      Here she is working on her poems from First Language Lessons{she’s using our Poem PowerPoint}.

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      All About Reading 2 is moving along. She loves the games in the lessons. It is a GREAT fit for her!

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      Ways we supplement reading development…

      We go to the library at least twice a month, sometimes more! Her library books are read daily both independently and aloud! 

      Before we take books back I ask her to set out her very favorites and I snap a photo and share on Instagram.  These are some recent favorite stacks…

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      We finished The Dragons of Blueland, the final book in the series.  She LOVED these books!  We continue to read Little House on the Prairie.


      She has become quite the independent writer lately.  She loves her word wall folder and her try-it sheets. She uses both daily.

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      Whew!  I think that’s it! It takes me forever to write these posts but they are my favorite to look back on!

      Here’s our other posts from this year…

      Homeschool Wrap-Up The First 6 Weeks with 1st, 4th and 8th Grade[3]  Homeschool Monthly Wrap Up October 2015


      You can also see much of our everyday homeschool life on Instagram!


      Linking up with Weekly Homeschool Wrap-Up

      Penguin Painting ~ Home Art Studio Project

      We have been using Home Art Studio for a long time now.  You can see all of the projects I have blogged about here! Home Art Studio sent us curriculum to review years ago and has been a blog sponsor ever since.  We love working with them and sharing Home Art Studio with you!

      Penguin Art with Home Art Studio

      For our most recent project, I actually jumped up to our 3rd grade dvd and chose “Penguins On Ice” after looking at the instructions.  I thought she could handle it and she did!

      I completely enjoyed this project with her, which is rare for me.  She is really embracing the idea that art is creative and that everyone’s outcome is different.  Her attitude was fabulous and she smiled a lot. It hasn’t always been this way so I celebrate!

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      Her favorite part was learning the texturing technique taught by Ms. Volin in the video.  She thought this was so fun!

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      She practiced drawing penguins, and then practiced painting them.  She really enjoyed perfecting the types of penguins she wanted on her final piece.  Finally, she decided she liked what she had done and got to work on the final project!

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      She LOVED it, and so do I!  She kept saying, “make sure you tell the art teacher I’m only in 1st grade and I did the 3rd grade project!”  She cracks me up!

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      Home Art Studio Information

      Home Art Studio is an award winning DVD/ROM based art education program, taught by Lindsey Volin,  designed for homeschooling families. Every fun art project teaches students experience, but who want to ensure that their children receive a well-rounded arts education.

      Here are some helpful direct links: