Back to Homeschool 2022-2023 Post #2-Language Arts

15 Aug

This is post two in my series sharing what we will be studying during the 2022-2023 school year.

Today is Language Arts!

Now normally, we use a lot of The Good and the Beautiful materials for Language Arts. I really do like this curriculum because it works for everybody, and has not only all of the Language Arts skills, but geography and art included as well.

This year however, we are going to take a little break from it-although I anticipate going back to it next year.

The boys are going to be doing very similar things this year.

Both will be doing Night Zoo Keeper. I really like this program. There is so much creative writing, and some fun grammar games too. It covers all of the different Language Arts disciplines, plus typing practice, and getting the chance to draw.

Night Zookeeper Show

We are also going to be doing IEW Fix It! Grammar (Level 1 for The Little Guy, Level 2 for The Boy.) I had already decided to use IEW, so was very happy when it came up as a review product for the Homeschool Review Crew-free curriculum-yay!

This is a good program I previously used with The Girlio. I didn’t like Level 2 before because it felt like there was a big gap in ability between 1 and 2 (which is why we never continued with it), but they recently changed it, and it looks so much better.

And, we are going to do a book study together too.

We have never done a book study before, but I received this as a review product for the Homeschool Review Crew last year, and it looks like it has some interesting activities. We will see how it goes. We might pick and choose activities, or even just read the book-we will see. I mainly just want the boys to read this book-it’s so good! Any activities we do will just be a bonus.

The Girlio will also be utilizing a review product this year-Cover Story.

She really liked it, and so she decided she wanted to continue on with it for this school year, which is great.

I had already purchased The Good and the Beautiful High School 2, but we will just save that and use it next year. The Good and the Beautiful only has three years of high school available (the fourth year is for electives), so we are going to use this, and then do levels 2 and 3 the next two years.

For Spelling, we will be using Spelling Power. I really like this book. I have purchased many spelling books over the years, but like this one because it is comprehensive, and can be used for all of my kids.

Spelling Power, Fourth Edition

We are still enjoying Spelling Shed as well, so we will be using that again this year. It’s a good way to practice their Spelling Power words in a fun way.


For Poetry, we are continuing to work our way slowly through IEW’s poetry program. We didn’t do this at all last year, but I do want to get back into it. We’ll see how it goes!

Linguistic Development Through Poetry Memorization SET -- Workbook and CDs  (A Mastery Learning Approach): Andrew Pudewa: 9780980100587:  Books

Well, that’s it for Language Arts for the 2022-2023 school year.

Next up in my series is Science and Geography, so stay tuned!

Back to Homeschool 2022-2023 Post #1-Books

14 Aug

It’s that time of year again! We are going back to school next week.

It’s our 9th year of homeschooling already-how crazy is that?

The kids are in tenth, seventh, and fourth grades.

This week I will be sharing our school subjects and plans for 2022-2023 (for those not interested in homeschooling, I will be back to my normal posting schedule next week. I will have two new cards up on Monday, August 22nd.)

Today I am sharing our books (my favorite part, of course!)

Read alouds are a big part of our homeschool.

Here are the books I set aside to read throughout the year:

The Inkwell Chronicles: The Ink of Elspet
I received an advanced copy of this one, so we already read it this summer. It was OK, but I don’t know if we will read any more from the series when they come out.

Spy School Project X
This book is the latest installment in the Spy School series. We read the new one every year, and this one looks particularly good! It doesn’t look like they are giving out advanced copies to reviewers this year (such a bummer!) so we will actually have to wait until it comes out in September. Oh well-still looking forward to it!

The Mysterious Benedict Society
This one looks pretty good, but it’s LONG, so we’ll see if we do it or not.

I didn’t get to this one last year, so it’s back on the list for this year.

If we have time, we might read the My Father’s Dragon series again too as it’s been a while. And we will read some short Christmas stories in December as well.

For the kids’ individual reading time, the boys have thirty minutes of required reading time. For The Little Guy, I will let him read whatever he wants. The Boy can mostly do the same, although I will pick a few for him-just to get him out of his comfort zone a bit. Right now I am thinking The Water Horse, and Because of Winn Dixie. He is currently working through the Mrs. Piggle Wiggle books and Harry Potter book #1, so that will keep him busy too, I’m sure!

The Girlio also has thirty minutes of required reading time, but she has a lot of books to read for History this year, so she will be working her way through those. Some she reads to herself, and some I read aloud to her. We are currently in the middle of The Eagle of the Ninth, and it is quite good.

I also plan on reading a few books aloud to The Little Guy.

We are currently reading through the Imagination Station series, and that will probably take us most of the year. Right now we are working on book seven.

I would also like to read one or two of these to him:

Pippi Longstocking

Mrs. Piggle Wiggle

The Family Under the Bridge

Well, that’s the list of books I have so far for the 2022-2023 school year-subject to change if we find something we just HAVE to read right now of course. 🙂

We will also be reading books incorporated into our Science, Music, and History too, which I will share more about in later posts.

Next up we will be covering Language Arts, so stay tuned for that post tomorrow.

p.s. If you are looking for a cheap source for books, I highly recommend, and buying used on And of course, don’t forget your local library!

Book Review-In Too Steep

13 Aug

In Too Steep was written by Kate Kingsbury and is book two in the Misty Bay Tea Room Mystery series. I would recommend starting with book one if you haven’t read it.

Summary: Vivian Wainright, owner of the Misty Bay Tea Room, is reveling in a new romance, but when she hears of a murder at the beach, she can’t shake the feeling that the police have it all wrong. The least she can do is investigate a little and clear the murdered man’s name, right?

But the trail is twisted with breadcrumbs of clues that lead nowhere. Can she and her friends discover the truth before it gets one of them killed?

My Thoughts: I really enjoyed this book. In fact after I finished it, I kept wishing I could go back and keep reading it! I am a big fan of mysteries that are fun and interesting, keep me guessing, but aren’t gory or yucky. This book fits the bill, and is perfect to read curled up with a cup of tea, a comfy blanket, and just get immersed in a cozy mystery.

I especially like the characters in this series. They are interesting, relatable, and there are just some great dynamics between the different personalities. I was really reminded of some of my favorite Hallmark Movie and Mystery series with these books, and I have been thoroughly enjoying them. I can’t wait to read the next one!

I would like to thank Crooked Lane Books for providing me with a free digital copy of this book in exchange for my review. Thank you!

Homeschool Meetings

12 Aug

Homeschool meetings? What are you talking about, you may say? Who do you meet with? What’s going on-I’m confused! 🙂

Well, I DO have homeschool meetings-and if you homeschool, I would recommend you have them too!

Who do I meet with? My kids.

Each summer as time winds down to the beginning of a new school year, I have a meeting with each one of my kids.

I am fortunate to have a birthday in August, and I save up all those little birthday freebies I get from businesses. Then, I take one kid with me, cash one coupon in for a treat, and we sit down (usually at a park) and talk about last school year, this school year, things they want to do, or things they didn’t like and want to do differently while they munch away.

It’s a special time, and I always learn something from each of them. Usually, it’s something small (they know they still have to do math!), and I can tweak it and add it in to my homeschool plan for the year.

It’s also something fun we look forward to. It’s nice to get out and have some one-on-one time.

If you are wondering about the freebies, it’s easy to get on business’ mailing lists for these. Here are some I redeem:
Culver’s-a one-scoop ice cream with one topping-I usually take The Girlio along for this one
Panera-a free bakery treat-The Little Guy loves the vanilla cinnamon rolls here
Kum N’Go gas station-one free drink, slushie, or treat-this works for The Boy, because slushies (his favorite) are gluten-free/dairy-free
Red Robin also has a free burger and fries you could share with your kiddo-I have done that before too

You don’t have to have a birthday in August either-you can have your meeting any time of the year!

So, if you homeschool, do you have meetings with your kids or do any special things before the new year starts? Leave me a comment-I would love to know!

Homeschool Summers-This Is How We Do It

11 Aug

Anybody got a song running through their head right about now? This is how we do it…..ahem.

ANYWAY. I just finished writing all of my Back To Homeschool posts, which you will see next week.

And I got to thinking, it might be kind of fun to share the things we do before the new school year starts.

No, I am not talking about curriculum. For once.

I do buy all of my curriculum before the school year is even over because I tend to have kids that go about a DAY, and then say they are bored and want to start next year. Yep.

But once the school year has ended (usually end of April, beginning of May depending on the kid), we start our own version of summer school.

Not really school in the traditional sense (although homeschool really isn’t traditional, now is it?) but an easy, relaxed pace.

My kids know they have a goal to complete 100 hours of school during the summer.

They can do it however they want, and they can choose whichever subjects they want to do. If they want to read a stack of books, they can get ahead on their required reading time. If they want to work ahead on their P.E. time, they can go swimming-that kind of thing. We even tend to do one of our read alouds during the summer. It’s super relaxed.

The only time reading doesn’t count during the summer is if they are completing a reading challenge for the library or Barnes and Noble for prizes-no double-dipping. 🙂

Now, after everyone has completed twenty hours of school time, they get a fun prize to share. And there is a new prize at every 20 hour mark, all the way up to 100 hrs. I budget for these prizes in my school budget for the year.

This year, they got a tabletop fuseball table, a tabletop air hockey table (these were around $8 each at Big Lots), a trip to the Dollar Tree where they could each buy 3 items, $3 each to pick out items at our local crafting supply store (it’s like a Goodwill, but only crafty supplies), and the last one is always a trip to Cold Stone to finish off the summer (the other prizes change depending on the year.)

Why do we do 100 hours, you may ask? Well, first, I know that if each kid does 100 summer hours, we can do school four days per week during the school year (our state requires 172 days, average of 4 hrs. per day.) This gives us plenty of time to get to errands, playdates, etc. on Fridays. My daughter even volunteers at the library now on Fridays because she has the time. Our week is less hectic, and the weekends are longer. Nice.

Also, it keeps our hands in the pot, so to speak. We are still reading and learning over the summer, but in a nice and relaxed way. There isn’t a harsh line between the end of the school year and the beginning of the next-one just eases into the next.

This really works for us and our lifestyle, but I would love to hear what YOU do if you homeschool. I always find so much inspiration in listening to other people’s stories. There is no one right way with homeschooling, and that’s the way it should be.

Well, that’s it from me for today.

Have a fabulous day!