I am three and a half years into this blogging thing and I decided to try something different. This fall, I applied for and was accepted into the Homeschool Review Crew. A few times this year, I will get to try out a homeschool product with Clarissa and review it. My first assignment is the SchoolhouseTeachers.com Yearly Membership.
SchoolhouseTeachers is a great website full of resources for homeschool families. There are online courses and course outlines available for all ages and subject areas. You can search by either grade or subject. There are full year courses, smaller unit studies, and single lessons available as part of your subscription.
One thing I like about the variety of lessons available is that Clarissa can look at some of the choices with me and decide what she really wants to learn about. As she gets older, this gives us so many choices without me having to do a ton of prep work which excites me.
For the purposes of this review, I focused on the courses and lessons available for preschool/kindergarten. The lessons were grouped together, so I was frustrated initially because I feel like most of them are geared toward kindergarten. There are several things that I am excited about for the fall when she is in kindergarten including a complete math curriculum that shows lessons and activities for the entire year.
I did find a lesson that I want to try with Clarissa this spring. “Manners and Healthy Habits for Preschoolers” teaches hygiene and nutrition in a way Clarissa will understand. It focuses on how to perform skills like wash your hands, brush your teeth, take a bath, and dress yourself. But it also explains why this skill is helpful and allows you to stay healthy. There are stories, coloring pages, and charts to go with different skills. This unit also introduces germs, manners, and how following rules keeps us safe in a way that Clarissa will understand.
I was very excited when I discovered the Preschool Playground. It has everything you need for preschool curriculum in one place. There are several different Bible programs, alphabet books, math skill activities, art and music centers, science experiments, and history lessons. The preschool in a box feature has activities in all subjects grouped by month so that your activities will also follow holiday schedules, as well as book suggestions to fit these activities. If I wasn’t already using a preschool curriculum, I would use this exclusively. But I think I will supplement what we are doing during the different holidays.
Another feature of the membership is access to the Video Library. There are videos and stories to teach the information. Children can play games to sort and match letter sounds or bones of the body. There are links to classic books and nursery rhymes that show pictures and also provide audio. There is even a section to print coloring pages. Clarissa will like this section the most right now.
Access to World Book is also included in membership. The library has many different resources. Children can choose any topic to learn about. There are articles, videos, pictures, and games about anything they want to explore. Clarissa will appreciate this feature more when she is older and can actually read.
Overall, I was impressed with the features on the SchoolhouseTeachers website. I think a yearly membership would be most beneficial for a family with children of multiple ages because curriculum would be available in one place for everyone. There is a fifty percent discount if you join in January.