Sunday, September 30, 2018

Revolution Math

Revolution Math is an online, subscription based tutoring website. It combines live tutoring with an immersive, story-based curriculum, and Common Core aligned math games. Students will spend one hour a week with highly educated teachers and up to 4 students. Revolution Math conducts extensive background checks on their teachers to verify teaching experience and they go through a rigorous hiring process to ensure that they meet the high standards set forth by Revolution Math. The story-based curriculum follows Zoe, Rowen, Merrik, and Brit as they journey through Lava Falls, the Enchanted Kingdoms, and the Floating Islands as they defeat villains. Students can earn gems by completing math problems and then exchange those gems for real prizes in the Rewards Store. You can have your child do a 4-week trial of Revolution Math for $49 which includes a complimentary learning kit. The learning kit includes the following materials: dice, pencil, protractor, graph paper, area tiles, flash cards, character masks, and a poster. After the 4-week trial period there are two options for continuing your child’s journey with Revolution Math. If you sign up for a year you can get a monthly rate of $99. Or, you can choose to pay monthly with no commitment for $149 a month.

Revolution Math can be used by students in public, private, and the homeschool setting. Revolution Math is intended for students in grades 2-5 but students outside of these grades also may benefit from the program. You will need to download the Zoom app in the Apple Store, Android apps on Google Play, or on your desktop. Once the Zoom app is downloaded you are set to go. The weekly sessions can be viewed on a computer, iPad, or any device on which the Zoom app works.

So, what does a typical class session look like? Once all students and the teacher are on the forum they all say hello and introduce themselves if there are any new students. Class begins with the story portion of the curriculum which is a lot like a comic book. Students pick their characters and read the beginning of the story. Next, the teacher introduces the math concept(s) for the week and explains it to the students. Students then work through math problems together and individually as assigned by the teacher. REWARD TIME! Students get to circle a treasure chest among a group of chests on the screen and they get to keep how many ever gems are behind the chest they choose. Next, it is back to more math problems. Then, students read more of the story. Then it is back to more math problems. REWARD TIME! Time to pick another treasure chest. Time to do a few more math problems. Finally, the students wrap up by reading the end of the story for the week.

When I first signed my daughter up for Revolution Math I made the mistake of signing her up for the wrong class. I accidently signed her up for outgoing 5th graders instead of outgoing 4th graders. For the first couple of weeks of class my daughter was like a deer starring into headlights. The other kids in the class seemed to know all of the concepts except for my daughter. Being a homeschooling parent, I thought, “Wow, have I failed my daughter that much! Is she really that far behind?” Her teacher was so very kind and patient. She worked with my daughter realizing that she was behind the other students. She would give her the easier problems. My daughter was able to do a good chunk of the problems but with much effort. After third week a wonderful representative named Mike from Revolution Math e-mailed me to find out how our Revolution Math experience was going. I told him that things were not going so well. After we chatted back and forth a couple of times he figured out that I had registered my daughter for the wrong class. Talk about feeling like a horrible mom, ugh! Mike was very kind and promptly helped me find the right class for her and one that would fit our crazy schedule. He addressed all other concerns that I had. Mike was quick in his responses.
My daughter’s first teacher Jessica was amazing. She was patient, cheerful, and you could definitely tell that she loved teaching. One of the e-mail comments that Jessica left said, “Phoebe did a great job with her session today! She picked up quickly on learning coordinate points and parallel lines, and also got the hang of how to find symmetrical points. I loved how focused she was throughout the lesson. Keep up the great work, Phoebe!” What encouraging words not only for me as a parent to hear but also for Phoebe as a student to read about herself.
Once my daughter was settled into her correct class for incoming 5th graders things drastically changed. All of the sudden everything was easy. After a week or two of review since it was technically still summer her new teacher Aimee announced that the students were now officially 5th graders!! After that session my daughter came to me and said, “Mom, guess what! I am officially a 5th grader now.” She was smiling big and was so proud. After another recent session she came to me and said, “Mom today we were learning about adding with decimals. I learned that a long time ago. It was so easy. Some of the other kid’s kind of had a hard time. It was kind of nice not being the one to struggle. I did my problems and then just sat there while everyone else was still working.” I am sure that since it is the beginning of the school year they are doing a lot of review. Still, it was wonderful to see the confidence and sparkle in my daughter’s eyes. I probably haven’t stated this yet, but my daughter greatly dislikes math and struggles with it.
This last week’s e-mail update said, “Hi all. We did some tough work with adding and subtracting with decimals today. Remember the important part is to line up the decimals before you start. Try to practice place values this week. Write down some numbers with decimals and then identify the place value of each digit in the number. For example: 2,579.831= 2 Thousands, 5 Hundreds, 7 Tens, 9 Ones, 8 Tenths, 3 Hundredths, 1 Thousandth.” 

 What my 10-year-old daughter had to say, “I do not like math at all! I was not happy when my mom said that I was going to be doing math online with a tutor and other kids. I was kind of excited when the Revolution Math box came in the mail. The day of my first tutoring session I was nervous because I did not know what to expect. The first class there was just me and another boy. The other boy was really annoying. He would not stop talking and he seemed like he was a real smarty pants. He knew everything! He made me feel so stupid. I wondered why he even needed tutoring. I worked through the problems the teacher gave me. The third week I was the only student, so it was just me and the teacher. I really liked that. I didn’t have to compete with anyone. It was a wonderful. This was also the day that my mom found out that she had put me in the wrong class!!! No wonder it was so hard. I was kind of proud of myself that I was doing the end of 5th grade work. I am not even in 5th grade yet. I will miss my teacher. I really like her. My new class is so much easier. It is stuff that I have already done before. I actually feel smart now!” 

I have really liked everything about Revolution Math. The two teachers that my daughter has worked with have been great. Help from the Revolution representatives are amazing. Response time is quick and prompt. Setting up your account and logging in weekly for your child’s session is simple and easy. In the two months that we have been using Revolution Math we haven’t encountered any issues. I like that parents are sent weekly updates about their child’s progress. If you are like me and your life is crazy and chaotic reminders are always a nice. Every week the day of your child’s session Revolution Math sends a reminder that your child has their tutoring. They even given the time just in case your brain is overrun with too many activities. I find this too be very helpful. Another huge plus is that my daughter is able to get this tutoring help at home! No need to drive somewhere and sit and wait for her or drop her off. I love that this can be done from the comfort of our own home. Revolution Math has so many time slots available throughout the day and week to fit your schedule.
I would most definitely recommend Revolution Math to friends and other homeschool parents looking for a great tutoring option that does not require them to leave their home. After my daughter's review time was up I was quite sad. Unfortunately, right now the monthly fee just is not in our budget. I would have most definitely stayed with Revolution Math if I would have been able to! My daughter was gaining so much from her experience and was coming away each week feeling more and more confident in her math abilities. The convenience, flexibility, and student friendly curriculum makes Revolution Math a great all around online math tutoring option! 
 Disclaimer ~ I reviewed Revolution Math in exchange for my honest opinion of the product. 

Saturday, September 29, 2018

Ever Faithful

Ever Faithful
A 365-Day Devotional

 Dr. David Jeremiah is the founder and host of Turning Point, a ministry committed to providing Christians with sound Bible teaching relevant to today’s changing times. Ever Faithful is a hard cover devotional that will take you  through the year. Each day begins with a scripture and then Dr. Jeremiah uses practical everyday living examples and points readers back to the Bible. 

For example July 4th entitled, Warning Signs, the scripture comes from 2 Chronicles 36:15 which says: "And the Lord God of their fathers sent warnings to them by His messengers, rising up early and sending them, because He had compassion on His people." Dr. Jeremiah talks about how important warning signs are. They alert us of danger from tornadoes to harmful ingredients in products. The Bible also is full of warnings. Dr. Jeremiah says, "Sin produces sorrow, immorality brings heartache, moral depravity causes despair, and disregard for grace results in judgement. When we ignore God's greatest warnings and continue to live in sin, we miss His grace, His Gospel, and the glory He wants to give us." In Acts 20:31 it says, "Therefore watch, and remember that for three year I did not cease to warn everyone night and day with tears." We always need to heed God's warnings! According to Dr. Jeremiah, if we don't we are endangering our souls. 

This devotional would be the perfect gift for Christmas coming up. I think that this would be appropriate for teenagers as well as adults. 

Each month begins with a scripture of the month. There is a satin bookmark that can be used to keep your place marked in the book. At the end of the book there is a section for notes. 

Disclaimer~I received this in exchange for my honest review. 

Monday, September 24, 2018 ~ A Review is an amazing interactive math practice site that engages students in grades K-5 towards mastery of math skills and concepts. The math concepts in each grade level offer a wide variety of types of questions to help keep students engaged and interested in the material. Students receive instant reward and feedback along the way and are challenged mathematically. The program keep your students progress so that you as a parent can see exactly how your child is doing. The same team that operates created Membership Pricing is available for many levels. 

My daughter has been working through the 5th grade level of She has enjoyed the freedom to choose from the many topics available in the 5th grade level. Within each topic there are subtopics to choose from. Each lesson consists of 15 questions. Parents are 
able to create assignments for their students to complete. The student then simply
clicks on the My Assignment tab and completes the assignment that you have created
for them. I opted to let my daughter work independently and to let her choose what 
she wanted to work through. At the beginning I told her that I wanted to to work through
each of the topics and not just work through what was easy for her. It was easy for me
to go in and check her progress to see what she was working on and to make sure that
she was working on a variety of topics. Giving her this independence made it seem not
so much like schoolwork. 

Here are a few of the questions from the topics within the 5th grade level questions.
For younger students or for students that struggle with reading they can
click on the sound/speaker icon and have the question read to them. If your student is 
using an iPad they can actually work their problems out on the iPad. There is a 
Pencil icon that will appear. They simply touch on the icon and they will be able to 
work the problems out on the iPad. Since my daughter was using our MacBook Pro
Laptop she had to do her work on paper. 

If a student is unsure of how to begin a problem they can click on the hint button at the
bottom left hand corner of their screen and a hint box will pop up. The hint will help get
the student started on how to start the problem. In each subsection students are given
3 hints to use. I absolutely loved the idea behind the hint boxes! This helps the
student that may get discouraged and just needs a little bit of a help to get started. 
This feature also is great in that it enables the student to work independently without having
to go to a parent to ask for help, enabling them to be more independent. 

What student doesn't love to be praised for a job well done! Each time your student
answers a question correctly they are rewarded not only with a check mark, a written comment, but they also get an emoji face. When a student gets multiple problems correct in a row they will get a message such as, "Tic-tac-toe! 3 in a row!" Or if maybe they have been struggling to get answers right and they finally get one right the 
message might say, "You got it that time!" 

When a student gets a problem wrong the correct answer is displayed and then the problem
is worked out so that the student can see how the problem is supposed to look like. 
I love this!!! So many programs just tell the students that they got it wrong and 
move onto the next problem. The problem with that is the student has no way of knowing
why they got the problem wrong. I told my daughter to look at her problem and see
where she went wrong and to not move on until she understood why and how
she went wrong. 

When the lesson is complete your student will get a certificate showing their score 
for the lesson. sends parents weekly e-mail updates letting them know about their
child's weekly progress. This is a neat feature. 

I would most definitely recommend to others looking for math practice for their child. offers users a 60 day trial for FREE with no commitments to homeschoolers and teachers! I was extremely impressed with this program and 
will most definitely continue to utilize it. The only sad part is that my 
daughter is currently in the 5th grade and the program only goes up to 5th grade. 
I hope that they add grade levels in the future! 

To read more reviews click here.

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Saturday, September 22, 2018

The Greatest Dot-to-Dot Books

The Greatest Dot-to-Dot Books from Monkeying Around are fun connect the dots puzzles. Our family had the opportunity to review the Original Series which includes: The Greatest Dot-to-Dot Original Book in the World: Book 1The Greatest Dot-to-Dot Original Book in the World: Book 2The Greatest Dot-to-Dot Original Book in the World: Book 3The Greatest Dot-to-Dot Original Book in the World: Book 4.

My 10-year-old daughter Phoebe said, "I worked through Book One.
 My favorite dot-to-dot puzzle was the Crazy Dots. 
Crazy Dots were not in my book so my sister let me do one that was in her
her book. It really liked the Field of Dots. It was a really time consuming 
dot-to-dot puzzle but it was fun. I really liked the Star puzzles where you 
stop at each star and then skip to the next number and start your line again. 
The normal dot-to-dot puzzles that did not go way high 
past 100 or so were easy and fun. The dot-to-dot puzzles that went to almost 
200 made my eyes water. The No Dot puzzles were fun too. I was so sad when I finished
my book and I had no more puzzles to do." 

There are two basic tips to create the best pictures.
Try to make lines as straight as possible.
Follow number order.

My 15-year-old daughter Karis said, "I worked through Book 2. I liked the Stars puzzles
where you stop at each star, then skip to the next number and start your line again.
Working through the puzzles is calming. They are easy to work on while 
watching TV or listening to music. The variety of dot-to-dot puzzles is so much better
than the normal, boring dot-to-dot puzzles that we all are used to working on."

Using a fairly think pen or marker will allow the final image to 
emerge or pop from the page. Throughout each of the 4 books there
are helpful hints such as this one that will make your dot-to-dots look amazing! Some
of the other hints talked about are Long Distances between points, and Origins and 
History?. In Origins and History it talks about where dot-to-dots come from. For example,
Architectural design, perspective, the mysterious vanishing point. 
Astronomy is one of the first examples of connecting points via stars. 
Art, an example would be Pointillism. 
Geometry connects points with lines to various points using shapes. 

My 12-year-old was excellent at guessing the pictures way before anyone else.

I decided to work through one of the books after I saw how much fun my kiddos
were having. I intended to let my 18-year-old work through the 4th book but
I just could not resist myself. Once I started working through the 
puzzles I was addicted. It was relaxing and so much fun!! I loved the 
variety of puzzle types. One is definitely NEVER 
TO OLD to do dot-to-dots!! After completing the book I was finding myself desperate for
more books, lol. I got online to see the other dot-to-dot books from
Monkeying Around. 

My 12-year-old daughter Megan said, "My favorite dot-to-dot puzzle was the Crazy
Dots. I also liked the Sets where you stop your line after competing each set, then 
skep to the ext set and start your line again. It took me 2 days to complete the whole
Dot-to-Dot book. I worked through Book 3 in the series. I cannot wait to get more of
these books. I hope that they get harder as the series goes on. They are so much fun!!"

After completing Books 1-4 Dot-to-Dot enthusiasts can move onto
the next series,
The Greatest Dot-to-Dot Super Challenge 
Books 5-8 Set

Check out the many other Dot-to-Dot books available from Monkeying Around at

Dot-to-Dot with Monkeying Around
is Fun, Fun, Fun!!

Here is a 30% code that you can use DTD30HSP!!

Disclaimer: I received these books in exchange for my honest opinions for review. 

Confetti Eggs