Binding Digital Curriculum

One of my BEST homeschool purchases ever was the binding machine I bought last year. Yes, I have been homeschooling for over 10 years and I just broke down and bought a binding machine last year. I could kick myself for that. It has been a game changer for me and has really helped me organize and USE the digital curriculum I purchase for my kids!

Homeschool Mom Must Have Binding Machine

In the past I have used three ring binders but they just take up so much space. This is our first year using mostly bound workbooks that I have printed out myself and it has been great.

I HIGHLY recommend homeschool moms own three key products:

1 – HP Printer that is compatible with Instant Ink {or another cost-effective method to print full color at home for ease and simplicity.

2 – Laminating Machine – especially for the early childhood years!

3 – Binding Machine!!! This is a new must-have addition but one I wish knew years ago.

I thought I had to spend a ton of money to get a good binding machine, but I took a chance on a machine on Amazon that was less than $60 and a year later {and tons of bound books} it is still fabulous!

{if reading in email, you’ll need to click to the blog to be able to see the Amazon widgets}

This is the machine I bought:

I bought several sizes of binding combs and also clear sheets for the front and back of each book.

The Build Your Bundle Homeschool sale is a time of year when I acquire all sorts of new digital curriculum. I have found that if I decide what I want to use ASAP and get it printed and bound, I will use it! In the past I have been guilty of letting digital curriculum sit on my computer – forgetting it was there.

This year I made some awesome BYB purchases {you can see them all here}, and I have already printed and bound several books to use.

IMG_7319

Shown above:

Solar System Bundle {value $30} find it in Elementary #2 or add to Build Your Own Premium of 5 for $39.

Character Copywork {value $10} find it in Charlotte Mason or add to Build Your Own Basic of 5 for $25 or 10 for $39

The Ultimate Math Cheat Sheets {value $ 15} find it in Elementary #2 or add it to Build Your Own Basic of 5 for $25 or 10 for $39

To Every Nation {value $25} find it in Character or add it to Build Your Own Premium of 5 for $39.

Peek inside of each of those {since I know all homeschool moms want to see what the pages look like!!!}

5914A84B-11C1-4B64-83C9-3DD698824244

E5994C77-BD29-4E16-AA8D-13447953795E

E00A7616-59BF-48A4-AFE1-869075812895

E86FA5AA-E3BC-4396-AB6D-186351DE0960

FDD27DB0-1075-4D5A-8BAC-8501E1659AFC

My kids have loved their bound books, the fact that they can be folded over to write in is a favorite feature. They are also easier to carry around the house and take up less space.

If you are planning to purchase from the Build your Bundle {or you already have}, a binding machine is definitely worth looking into. What good is a bunch of digital curriculum sitting on your computer not being used? I am a huge fan of NOT WASTING MONEY, I bet you are too!

Not sure what would be best for you?

See my Helping You Build YOUR Bundle post here, my Homeschooling Kindergarten with BYB post here and a LIVE video on Facebook here sharing more of my thoughts about how to best utilize this sale to your benefit!

BYB 2018 Intro Post BYB 2018 Kindergarten Favorites FB Live



Teaching Textbooks Math Checklists

Teaching Textbooks Math Checklists P

Each year I share our homeschool curriculum choices with you. It is almost time to do that again, as many of you are in planning mode – while also in finish-up-THIS-year mode!

For the past couple of years I have created checklists for my kids to help organize our homeschool year. These have saved me LOADS of sanity once the school year begins!

Teaching Textbooks Math Checklists (18 of 2)

I switch curriculum publishers sometimes, but there is one I am completely stuck on and that is Teaching Textbooks Math. I have not changed any of my kids away from TT since we started and have no plans to switch at all. We love TT. I was a TT user for years and then they became a blog sponsor. Now I get to provide you with fun reviews, giveaways, and exclusive content. Although this post has nothing to do with that – it’s just me, the homeschooling mom, sharing an organizational tool with you!  But stay tuned – a full review of the new ONLINE Teaching Textbooks 3.0 is coming very soon!

I bundled all of our match checklists together into one file for you! I don’t have one for Pre-Calculus, but I do for all of the other levels!

Here’s a peek into our notebooks this year, they are so helpful for my kids and for me! They {or I} record their grades daily so that we have a visual record off of the computer screen. It is nice for us to be able to see how far along we are and how much we have left to go!

Teaching Textbooks Math Checklists (17 of 2)

New to Teaching Textbooks? See our We Love Teaching Textbooks Math post here.

You can find a placement test online which I recommend having your child take before deciding on a level to begin with. Most kids will work a level above their grade. My 3rd grader does level 4, my 6th grader does level 7.

Teaching Textbooks Placement Tests

Download our Teaching Textbooks Math Checklists here!

Teaching Textbooks Math Checklists

Teaching Textbooks Checklists



Daily Work Grid ~ A Visual Schoolwork Plan for Homeschoolers

Daily Work Grid Schoolwork Plan for Homeschoolers VIDEO Tutorial included in post!

 

This idea has been brewing in my mind for years, I just never took the time to create it until now.  It is similar to methods we have used in the past and resembles methods other homeschoolers use.  It isn’t a totally new idea, just a new twist on methods I have both used and seen, adapted to suit our current needs.

Many of you saw my photo on Instagram several months ago when I created the cards and grid. There were tons of questions about it and I promised a blog post!

Daily Work Grid -7254 

It did take some time to set up and I explain how I did it in the video below…

Daily Work Grid

Many have asked about our Daily Work Grid that I am using with our 1st grader and I finally got a video together for you! See how we use it and a tutorial for how I made the grid and the subject cards in PowerPoint.Blog post coming soon!**See more VIDEOS on our YOUTUBE Channel ~ https://www.youtube.com/user/carisahh**SUBSCRIBE to our blog posts ~ http://mad.ly/signups/115694/join

Posted by 1+1+1=1 on Sunday, August 30, 2015

 

I shared this photo the night before we began 1st grade, which shows our Lessontrek plan and our Daily Work Grid ready to go for her first day of school.

Daily Work Grid -8800

 

We have now been using this method for over 3 week and it is working very well for us!  She loves the visual choices she has, and also seeing how much she has left each day.

Daily Grid -8733

 

Having a visual daily grid like this for a young child helps us in many ways. The biggest help for us is the fact that expectations for the homeschool day are crystal clear.  There are many ways to do this, a simple list on the board or in a notebook works well for many families. 

For our 1st grader, this is a visual intro to following a daily homeschool plan. For us Kindergarten and below is much more play-based and child-led so the lesson plans are really only for me up until now.  With an end goal of more independence in homeschooling, this visual daily grid eases her into this.

By showing her clearly what is to be done that day, she knows what to expect.  The cards coming off give her a feeling of accomplishment and also help squash the “how much more do I have to do today” questions {and sometimes attitude problems}.

Daily Grid -8735

 

Using a daily work grid like this may be beneficial for you if you…

  • have a child who likes to know what is expected each day.
  • have a child who needs a visual rather than written version.
  • have a child who whines or complains about how much is left to do.
  • have a young child who is easing into following a daily homeschool routine {usually beginning in K-2}.
  • like creating things on your own and have the time {this takes time to prepare}.

I would not recommend this method if you…

  • have an older child who can easily read a written list and doesn’t really need visuals. No need to go backwards.
  • have many children and would struggle to keep up with the consistent routine of this.
  • don’t have time to even put this together.
  • have a young tot or preschooler who is more play-based and child-led, they don’t necessarily need a grid like this.  I don’t recommend being this planned out in the early years.  Having freedom to go with the flow during those early years is more important that following the daily plan.  This is exactly why I never give lesson plans for any of my tot programs {Tot School Printables, Animal ABCs, etc.}  I believe in a more flexible plan during those years. Every child is different and the pressure of a daily plan doesn’t allow for this as much. I personally would not have used something like this until Kindergarten.  It would have been great last year I just didn’t have time to create it.

Here’s the video sharing how we use our daily grid and how I created the grids and subject cards in PowerPoint.  I am sorry fi you don’t have PP, this is just what I use mostly to create my printables and I can only share how I do it.  Many aspects will be similar in another program, hopefully you can get the general idea!



Our Homeschool Room 2015-2016

Homeschool Room 2015-2016

Our Homeschool room has evolved greatly over the years and ESPECIALLY this year since we moved!  It took me a long time to get things together after moving here this past December. This room is a gift, I am so grateful!  It is technically the formal living room of the house we now live in, but who needs a living room?  And that window light – ahh! The floors aren’t too bad either! I seriously hit the jackpot with this room, thanks to the previous owner and the many renovations they had done {it’s an older home}.

Want to go straight to the video?

Homeschool Room Tour from 1+1+1=1See a video tour of our homeschool room! Visit the blog post for more details ~ http://www.1plus1plus1equals1.net/2015/08/our-homeschool-room-2015-2016/

Posted by 1+1+1=1 on Saturday, August 29, 2015

 

My daughter’s little desk {from Ikea but they no longer carry it} still sits there, but this might be the last year she fits in it.  She doesn’t use it for schoolwork usually, but loves to sit there and color or draw. We have our Ikea Trofast shelves under the big windows, and love the table top they provide.  I keep current unit study materials and science stuff on top.

Homeschool Room -8441

 

This is a close up shot of her work drawers.  I explain a little bit more in the video near the bottom of the post.  We are giving this method a try {subjects in specific drawers with labels}, we’ll see how it works! The basic idea is that I will have the current assignment for that subject in the drawer and she will bring it to me when it’s time to work together {or get it out herself if it’s an independent subject}. You can see her 1st grade homeschool subjects here and our weekly plan. I plan to share more on this once we start using the plan.

1st Grade -8325

 

Below you can see my favorite photo ledges from Ikea which we use as book ledges and a place to hang our color buckets {so my kids always know where to find a certain color they need of a marker, crayon, or colored pencil}. It just wasn’t home until these were hung!

We keep general geography books on top, and library books on the bottom 2.  The middle shelf is for chapter books and the bottom is for current animal {science} study books.

Homeschool Room -8444

 

The desk you see below used to be my oldest son’s desk but none of my children have their own desk now!  Due to finances and space, we made the decision to use a group area, my desk, and our dining room table for working. This desk is now our group crafting desk, mainly used for Perler Beading.

Homeschool Room -8447

 

This is a close up of the shoe shelves {from Target} on the desk.  You can see all of the Perler Bead supplies, our littleBits sets, and school storage on the top.

Homeschool Room -8455

 

To the right of the desk is Ladybug’s library area.  This is a very LOVED area in our schoolroom!  Krash often really enjoys her books also, but this mainly her area. On the top ledge sits our All About Reading/Spelling board, which we store up there but use on my desk.

Homeschool Room -8453

 

Directly opposite of the desk corner is this white shelf {Ikea also}.  The 4 shelves that are open are my 8th graders shelves for his school stuff. This is now his “desk” and so far it has worked well.

Ladybug’s calendar is below, with math supplies stored in the 4 shelves behind the calendar. Up top is storage for me, and also in the colored drawers to the left.

Homeschool Room -8460

 

You can see how this wall flows together in this shot…

Homeschool Room -8467

 

This white shelf is in the opposite corner and holds much of our group subject stuff, and extra supplies. There’s even an empty shelf, for now!

Homeschool Room -8464

 

Here’s a view of my desk on the other side. I am still not done with the walls. We plan to hang some shelves and photos.  It’s a work in progress!

Homeschool Room -8470

 

This is a view looking into the dining room which we use for group subjects and all sorts of things! I share more about what is in there in the video below.

Homeschool Room -8479

 

Here’s a video I made for you, taking you on a small tour of our new room! The video is about 7 minutes long.


Here’s a look back, for those of you who like to see ideas from our past homeschool rooms. These posts were all from the room in our old house.

Homeschool Room Homeschool Room Tour 2013 Homeschool Room

Some other helpful posts that feature our schoolroom and things in it {past and present}…

Color Coded Homeschool Supplies  school supply labels  Calendar Time Ideas and Printables

Tame the Toys  Help for the Energetic Child  organizing school and office supplies in an over the door shoe hanger



How We Organize All About Reading

Organizing All About Reading Curriculum

{disclaimer ~ affiliate links are used}

It’s no secret that we are big fans of All About Reading and All About Spelling.  Last week I began organizing Level 2 for my daughter and shared this on Instagram

Organizing All About Reading -7001

I was in the middle of getting it all ready and snapped a photo and shared.  As you can see on Instagram, there were a few questions about my method so I decided to make a quick video and blog post for them and for you!

Our method is very simple and stems from the method we used to use which I share here.  Same idea, I just now use a notebook instead of file folders. My life is all about notebooks these days, so it just fits better for me during this season of life.

Minutes into my organization session my daughter found me and begged to peek in the new books.  She is almost done with Level 1 and was so excited to see the Level 2 books sitting out!

Organizing All About Reading -7010

Here’s the video I made to walk you through our notebook!

She will be using All About Spelling Level 1 in the fall also!  We will probably begin All About Reading Level 2 as soon as she finishes Level 1 so there isn’t a big gap.  I normally school my younger learners through the summer as they are learning to read, even just a little bit each day.


Looking for more info about All About Reading or Spelling? 

Here’s some posts I have written…

Helpful articles from the All About Learning Press site…

 

Reviews on other blogs {friends of mine}

Each month the All About Learning blog holds a giveaway!  Be sure to enter to win!