Wednesday, October 04, 2017

Guest Post: Living Math Books

Over the next year. . I have many friends to help me with keeping up the blog. So there will be a variety of guest posts by different authors. I will try to post as well. This week is from a dear friend of mine who wishes to be anonymous. So without further ado . . . Living Math Books

Math.. some love it.. Some hate it.  You would think as an engineer by training I would be in the love it category, but alas, not so much.  Teaching it to a challenging learner was not really a bag of fun either!  But, since my son is a reader, he gravitated toward “living math books.”  There is a website that details many living math books but here are some of our favorites.

We love the Dave Ramsey kids’ books.  The current ones on his website look different than the ones we purchased many years ago but I am guessing the idea is the same.  The child in the book had a ‘money challenge’ to save, or earn or give and it played itself out.  My son really enjoyed these.  

Many people in the homeschooling community are familiar with Life of Fred  Since we started homeschooling, they have increased their line of books.  But just recently I was even able to find one at the library.  I nabbed it up, took it home and just set it on the kitchen table.  Low and behold, he picked it up and read it.  The subject is algebra.  Funny story; he is in public school right now and did not do too well in algebra (although he excelled at geometry.)  If they taught it this way in school he might have done better.  (Alas.. there are always trade-offs.).

When my son was younger he loved the books by Cindy Neuschwander including the Sir Cumference series which uses Medieval times to introduce geometry (and other)  concepts at an early age. Another series along this same line are the books by Greg Tang including The Grapes of Math and Math for all Seasons.

Finally, we love the Basher Books and they have one on Math called, Math: a Book You Can Count On.   If you purchase scholastic books at all you can sometimes find these for a real deal especially as a group of books, but they are really inexpensive.  I really like to just strew books like this about and see what sticks.  Often concepts I never seemed able to “teach” were grasped when received in their own time

Monday, September 25, 2017

Finding Gobi: The True Story of One Little Dog's Big Journey by Dion Leonard

Bring home the incredible true story of a friendship so strong that it crosses the globe! You will love the inspiring tale of Gobi, a lost dog who kept pace with an ultramarathon runner, Dion Leonard, across a vast desert. Follow their unlikely friendship through the challenges of an 80-mile race and Dion’s struggle to bring Gobi home for good.
Finding Gobi: The True Story of One Little Dog's Big Journey is the incredible true story of Dion Leonard, an athlete who was befriended by a stray dog while running an ultramarathon through the Gobi Desert. Named for the desert in which he found her, Gobi became Dion’s closest companion for 77 miles of the 155-mile race across China. The scrappy little pup ran mile after mile alongside Dion, through treacherous conditions and across raging rivers. He let her sleep in his tent and share his food, and eventually, his focus shifted from winning to the newfound friendship he and Gobi shared.
They crossed the finish line together—not first, but together—and Dion decided to bring Gobi home to Scotland. Just before they were about to leave, however, Gobi disappeared, setting off a worldwide search for the stray. In a town of more than 3 million people, the search seemed hopeless, but this tale of friendship will surprise and delight you as you find out what happens!
Join the almost too-good-to-be-true story of hope, friendship, and beating incredible odds in Finding Gobi: The True Story of One Little Dog's Big Journey by Dion Leonard.

Finding Gobi: The True Story of One Little Dog’s Big Journey by Dion Leonard tells the true story of a dog named Gobi who was found by Dion Leonard in his race through the Gobi Desert. They finished together and Dion wanted to bring him home to Scotland. Unfortunately, Gobi went missing while Dion was making arrangements for her move. The book shares the story of how Dion found her in his search across China, and the many friends who supported him. Gobi lives with Dion today.

I am always excited to find quality books for young readers. I loved that his was a true story of courage and determination. The story is heartwarming and I felt good about giving it to my nine-year-old daughter to read.

She liked the book, and highly recommends it. She loved the races and when they found Gobi. She liked how the book was about the relationship between Gobi and Dion. She also enjoyed learning about the different places they traveled to including the Great Wall of China. There were wonderful photos in the book that made it more real.

This book is for fourth to sixth grade readers, and as a read aloud for younger student.  

 Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookLook Bloggers <> book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 <> : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Friday, September 22, 2017

Narrative Assessments for Ohio Homeschoolers

For the 2016-2017 School year  I will gladly accept your portfolio and send you the form you need for your district.  Please know I accept portfolios year round and am happy to accept your portfolio at any time!  At this moment I am running about 2-5 days to get your paperwork back in the mail to you.  

I complete narrative assessments for Ohio homeschoolers.  The Assessments are portfolio reviews by myself, a certified teacher, that fulfill the Ohio Home Education requirement for 3301-34-04 Academic Assessment Report Option #2.  
If you would like to begin the process start by downloading the forms for the Freestyle Assessment for unschoolers, the Self Reflection Assessment for K-8th grade, OR the Self Reflection Assessment for High School for those who follow a subject curriculum. You fill out the forms, prepare the documentation, and sign them. Please email me for an instruction sheet that tells you where to mail them or how to send them to me electronically.  The instruction sheet also answers other questions. If you have trouble with the downloads, please email me.   Below are links  in Google Documents.   I am happy to help you so please contact me with any questions.

Becky Boerner

Freestyle Assessment in Google Documents
Self Reflection for K-8 in Google Documents
Self Reflection for High School in Google Documents.

Once you get there you need to do the following. 
If you click on the arrow button on the left hand side of the page you can download the file.
If you click on the print button you can print it out.

PS: If you can not access these files, try the links above in the document.  If you still can not access the documents, please email me and I will send you the files.  I am happy to do that!  

My portfolio pricing for 2017  is (1 portfolio) $35; (2 portfolios) $65; (3 portfolios) $95;  (4 portfolios ) $120; (5 or more portfolios) $150

I also accept PayPal, Check, or Money Orders (Contact me for more information.  Many families send me checks or money orders through the mail. )

Click on the arrow for pricing for 2 or more reviews.


Monday, September 18, 2017

Guest Post: Painted Rocks. .by Lisa McAfee

 My friend Lisa is helping me out again.  You know that any article that starts with the word camping is not one written by me. ~Becky

Camping is a great family activity to do in the fall since the temperatures are cooler and colorful trees can be enjoyed. I saw a facebook group called Homeschool Rocks and thought decorating and hiding rocks with encouraging words or pictures would be a fabulous idea for a fun activity while you are camping.  I have included academic areas for you in parentheses so you can see how it applies to school. :)
You Will Need:
a bucket of warm, soapy water
paper towels
a pencil
outdoor acrylic paints
paint brushes
waterproof markers
Elmer's glue
Modge Podge or some type of outdoor sealant
a plastic jar or another container
plastic grocery bags- one per person
  1. Collect First of all, you and the children collect rocks that you want to paint. The best kinds are smooth, especially for younger children since they will paint more easily.  (PE is covered since you are getting exercise hunting for rocks.)
  2. Clean After you have determined which rocks you would like to paint, clean them in a bucket filled with warm, soapy water. Rinse them and place on some paper towels to dry. The paint will adhere much better to a clean surface, and your children will be getting their dirty hands clean at the same time. (Health- Getting all that dirt and grime off is part of a healthy routine.)
  3. Paint Now it's time to bring some life to those rocks! Cover a table with newspapers, and if you have small children who might get paint in more places than the rock, cover them too (an old shirt and pants will do the trick). Depending on what design you want to create, you may want to sketch lightly on the rock before applying the paint.  If details are being added, then a waterproof marker would be helpful to use. Outdoor patio paints are preferred so the rock weathers well. Allow to dry for several hours. (art)
  1. Seal  In order for your awesome rocks to be enjoyed for a long time, a sealant such as Modge Podge should be used. This will make the designs weather resistant and shiny. NOTE: If you have used permanent markers on the rocks, apply a thin layer of glue before applying the sealant to prevent smudging. Allow to dry according to the directions on the jar. 41O7V5Vq2FL
  2. Hide No, not you, the rocks! Have the children go and hide their rocks so that fellow campers can find them. Be sure to hide them where others can find them and be mindful of not placing them where it would be a hinderance. Each person that has hidden a rock can write a clue for others to find their treasure, thus creating a scavenger hunt.  (clues- writing;  directions- math, social studies)
  3. Find Put all of the clues in a plastic jar or other container and have each participant draw out a clue until they are all gone. Give each person a plastic grocery bag. Tell everyone to see if they can locate that rock based upon the clue.  Have everyone go and search for those treasures! Help little ones who can't read.
  4. Display Enjoy all of the treasures collected by having a rock show.
Repeat this as many times as you like and consider leaving the rocks behind for others to find. 


Lisa McAfee -
I am an alumni home educator of two sons and Ohio licensed teacher with over 30 years of teaching experience in a variety of settings. I have been assessing homeschool students’ work for the past 17 years and enjoy helping empower and encourage homeschool moms with their homeschooling.