• The Best Picture Books to Spark a Child's Imagination - great books to inspire imaginative play in children
    book lists,  elementary,  picture books

    The Best Picture Books for October

    It’s time for another monthly book list! I can’t believe that October is almost here – we are officially close to the end of the year! I know that most people would lean towards a pumpkin themed list for October but I feel like those have been done so many times over I wanted to do something different. Things definitely start getting chillier here in October and I like to change up my own reading list, while I like to read things a little darker at this time of year (more fantasy and mystery and books involving the English moor), I wanted to be more whimsical for a picture book…

  • free encouraging homeschool magazine
    resources

    A Free Encouraging Homeschool Magazine

    I truly enjoy blogging and sharing our homeschool story here in this space. I try to share the things that work as well as the things that don’t work. But I was recently thinking about how nice it would be for there to be an encouraging digital homeschool magazine that would be a great resource for those interested in homeschooling in the future, those new to the homeschooling thing as well as those who have been at it for a long time. So, as with most things, I decided to make one! Well, kind of. I would like to make one with your help! I am looking for homeschoolers to…

  • Free Pirate Unit Study Resources - great for talk like a pirate day
    book lists,  elementary,  middle grades,  picture books

    The Best Pirate Books – Picture Books & Non-Fiction

    We’ve been learning all about pirates for the last week in preparation for Talk Like a Pirate Day and of course I had to share a pirate book list! This list includes a bit of everything, picture books, chapter books, fiction and non-fiction. If you are interested in continuing to learn about pirates you can check out a list of the resources we used for our pirate unit study here.     We did everything from drawing pirates to creating pirate names, to watching videos about why they actual wore eye patches and of course: reading pirate themed books! Check out the pirate mini unit study resources. Now, on to the…

  • Free Pirate Unit Study Resources - great for talk like a pirate day
    history,  unit studies

    Pirate Mini Unit Study Resources

    One of the units I had on my list to study this year was pirates. And since September 19th is Talk Like a Pirate Day I thought we would learn about them leading up to that day. We’ve only done a few unit studies so far this year but this one was our favorite one yet. Pirates are a fun topic to study but it does involve a fair amount of weeding through fact and fiction. The kids totally got into pirate mode and dressed up in some old Halloween costumes.     There are so many great books, videos and resources for a pirate study, we could have studied the…

  • The Prairie Thief Book Review - fantasy for elementary and middle grade
    book lists,  elementary,  middle grades

    Fantasy Book Recommendations For Elementary and Middle Grades

    I was not a fantasy reader as a child and boy, do I ever feel like I missed out! I wasn’t even a fantasy reader as an adult until recently! I spent the last few years reading some elementary and middle grade fantasy to proof read for my kids and it really hasn’t been until this last year or so that I’ve started to get into older fantasy and I am really enjoying the books! I love that fantasy gives the characters purpose (some version of fighting the darkness) and isn’t so woe-is-me like other books can tend to get (obviously I’m generalizing here). My daughter has been a huge…

  • How I Plan Our Homeschool Year Without a Curriculum
    nature study,  science,  unit studies

    Weather Mini Unit Study Resources

    We’ve been continuing with our Monday mini unit studies in as part of our homeschool rhythm and our next topic of study was weather! I actually gave the kids the option between butterflies and weather and this is what they both chose. I was actually surprised by that choice. Weather is a broad topic and we definitely didn’t cover everything in one afternoon but we learned some stuff we didn’t know and that’s kind of the goal here. Little bits of learning all add up!     I gathered all the books I had from the library on weather as well as ones we had around the house and we…