Sunday, February 26, 2017

Naranjo Museum of Natural History

In 1960, Dr. Neal Naranjo began a lifelong quest to discover and preserve dinosaur bones. Each new fossil collected laid the foundation for the Naranjo Museum of Natural History located at 5104 South First Street, Lufkin, TX 75904.

Upon entering, you are greeted with a strata wall. The strata wall shows the different layers of stratum that are represented throughout the earth's history. Using it you can see just how far Paleontologists have to dig to find treasured fossils. From here, the museum takes you through the Precambrian era, the Ordovician era, the Devonian era, the Permian era, the Cambrian era, the early Silurian era, the carboniferous period, the Triassic period, and the Jurassic period. After you have walked through the age of dinosaurs, the museum takes you through the age of mammals. The museum also displays ancient civilization exhibits with jewelry from Egypt in addition to coins and pottery from the Greeks and Romans.

With a meticulous eye for rare finds, the Naranjo family has built a collection that rivals most urban museums. Visit the Naranjo Museum of Natural History to learn more.

Monday, February 20, 2017

HISTORY Through the Ages Project Passport World History Study

Take a trip through history with Home School in the Woods. In this resource review, I will share details about HISTORY Through the AgesProject Passport World History Study: Ancient Greece and the projects my 5th grade daughter is currently working on in this curriculum.

After downloading the file of HISTORY Through the Ages Project Passport World History Study: AncientGreece, you will want to print out the three-page “Travel Planner” – this is your lesson planner. You will find each lesson is called a “stop”. Like any stop on a tour, your time will vary according to your project choices. Some stops have more than one project listed, such as Scrapbook of Sights, Lap Book, Snapshot Moments, Postcard, Audio Tour, Active Participation, Newspaper, Game, Edible Project, and 3-Dimensional Project. This allows you to choose what you prefer to do. It is advisable that if you begin with a project that has a series of steps to it, you will want to follow through to the end. These particular ongoing projects take a bit longer to complete, however they result in pieces that your child will be very proud of.

There are 25 stops on your trip through Ancient Greece.

Stop 1 – Laying the Foundation – Part I – Packing for the Trip

Stop 2 – Laying the Foundation – Part II

Stop 3 – The Archaic Period

Stop 4 – Greek Government

Stop 5 – Athens

Stop 6 – Sparta

Stop 7 – Everyday Life – Part I

Stop 8 – Everyday Life – Part II

Stop 9 – Farming, Business, and Transportation

Stop 10 – Education, Oration, and Literature

Stop 11 – Science

Stop 12 – Medicine and Disease

Stop 13 – The Arts

Stop 14 – Philosophy

Stop 15 – Religion – Part I – Titans, Gods, and Monsters

Stop 16 – Religion – Part II – The Heroes and the People

Stop 17 – Warfare

Stop 18 – The Greco-Persian Wars

Stop 19 – The Golden Age and the Peloponnesian War

Stop 20 – Sparta, Thebes, and the Coming of the Macedonians

Stop 21 – Alexander the Great

Stop 22 – The Hellenistic Age

Stop 23 – The Greeks and the Jews

Stop 24 – Rediscovering Ancient Greece

Stop 25 – Final Stop – Packing Up!


If you find your child lingering on a topic he or she is interested in, follow it a little longer! In turn, if he or she has little interest in a topic and wants to move on, go ahead. The key is to provide exposure to your child.

Each stop has a Guide Book Text to read on a topic, and your “Travel Planner” will guide you with project choices. My daughter and I read aloud the lesson text before completing our projects. We are currently working on three projects: Snapshot Moments in History, Postcards, and the Newspaper. Snapshot Moments in History is a chronological timeline of events. Postcards are written from the year being studied, I only wish the postcards were numbered according to the stop to coordinate with the “Travel Planner” , this would make them easier to use. Our favorite project is the Newspaper! My daughter gets to write for the Greek Weekly – bringing you news of Ancient Greece from coast to coast!

Visit the Crew Blog to read more reviews.

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Multiplication Tips and Tricks

Here are some multiplication tips and tricks to help you and your students remember multiplication facts.

Best Tip
Every multiplication has a twin, which may be easier to remember. For example, if you forget 8x2, you may be able to remember 2x8=16. This way, you only have to remember half of the table.

Tricks by Number
2 - add the number to itself. For example, 2x9 = 9+9 = 18.

4 - double and double again. For example, 4x9, double 9 = 18, double 18 = 36.

6 - when you multiply 6 by an even number, they both end with the same digit. For example, 6x2=12, 6x4=24, 6x6=36, etc.

7x8 - think 5, 6, 7, 8. 56=7x8.

8 - double, double, double! For example, 8x6, double 6 = 12, double 12 = 24, double 24 = 48.

9 - is 10 times the number minus the number. For example, 9x6 = 10x6-6 = 60-6 = 54.

10 - put a zero after it. For example, 10x2 = 20.

Happy Homeschooling!

Sunday, February 12, 2017

It Is Well With My Soul

Horatio G. Spafford had known peaceful and happy days as a successful attorney in Chicago. He was the father of four daughters, an active member of the Presbyterian Church, and a loyal friend and supporter of D.L. Moody and other evangelical leaders of his day. Then, a series of calamities began, starting with the great Chicago fire of 1871 which wiped out the family's extensive real estate investments. When Mr. Moody and his music associate, Ira Sankey, left for Great Britain for an evangelistic campaign, Spafford decided to lift the spirits of his family by taking them on a vacation to Europe. He also planned to assist in the Moody-Sankey meetings there.

In November 1873, Spafford was detained by urgent business, but he sent his wife and four daughters as scheduled on the S.S. Ville du Harve, planning to join them soon. Halfway across the Atlantic Ocean, the ship was sunk by an English vessel and sank in 12 minutes. All four of the Spafford daughters - Tanetta, Maggie, Annie, and Bessie - were among the 226 who drowned. Mrs. Spafford was among the few who were miraculously saved.

Horatio Spafford stood hour after hour on the deck of the ship carrying him to rejoin his sorrowing wife in Cardiff, Wales. When the ship passed the approximate place where his precious daughters had drowned, Spafford received sustaining comfort from God that enabled him to write, "When sorrows like sea billows roll...It is well with my soul."

Sunday, February 5, 2017

5 Ways to Create a Christ-Centered Homeschool

1. Bible Study
We begin each school day in Bible and prayer. Psalm 119:105 reads "Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path." As we grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior, we are able to bear fruit. Christ must be the center of our life before He can be the center of our homeschool.

2. Godly Education
Proverbs 22:6 reads "Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it." Deuteronomy 6:6-9 reads "And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart. And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up. And thou shalt bind them for a sign upon thine hand, and they shall be as frontlets between thine eyes. And thou shalt write them upon the posts of thy house, and on the gates." We see from Scripture that the God who is sovereign over education has commanded Christian parents to raise up children to know Him, love Him, and follow Him in every area of life. Every subject is to be studied with the purpose of discovering the God-given meaning contained in it, bring every thought captive to the obedience of Christ, thus renewing the mind and developing a comprehensive and consistent worldview.

3. Hymn Study
We love Christian music! Colossians 3:16 reads "Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord." We stand in awe as we learn the stories behind the songs. And, it just makes daily chores more bearable if they can be done while worshipping.

4. Meal Time Prayers
Meals are shared together as a family. We've instilled the habit to always pray at every meal. Philippians 4:6 reads "Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God."

5. Acknowledge Him
Proverbs 3:6 reads "In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths." This verse could be a theme verse for life. This well-loved verse describes a two-way partnership with God: our part is to stop and acknowledge God along the way - in every decision, word, thought, or response, and His part is to direct our paths.