Tuesday, July 31, 2012



How does one describe what SchoolhouseTeachers.com is about?  It is hard to describe but I would describe it as a huge online learning community.  It took me a while to wrap my head around all of the resources available at the site.  The very first thing I did on the site was peruse the recipes tab where I found a recipe for zucchini fritters – shredded zucchini, shredded carrot, egg.  I made them right away as my garden has produced zucchini in abundance.  What a tasty, healthy treat.  I added a twist by adding parmesan cheese to the recipe, so much for healthy but altogether delicious.  There are many recipes to choose fun if you are looking to shake it up a bit in the kitchen.

Another one of my favorite tabs is the “SchoolhouseDailies” which includes daily grammar, writing prompts, and math drills among other things.  It is my goal to add these assignments to the beginning of my school day this fall.  I’ve seen classroom teachers do this before they start their lessons with students in the morning.  It is a great way to warm up the brain and get the mind in learning mode before the academic day begins.  I wish I could view the prompts at least a week before I actually use them but the assignments are added on a daily basis so I can not jump ahead.  Having the ability to review the lessons beforehand would be a tremendous help for planning purposes.  


I discovered the downloadable e-books next.  I couldn’t stop reading Turning Points as I was so encouraged reading story after story of different homeschoolers’ educational journeys.  I saw a little of myself in each story.  It was just what I needed to spur myself on as I try to get myself organized for a new year quickly approaching.  One of my favorite bible quotes from one story included, “So teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom.”(Psalm 90:12).  In this journey, we all have times of doubt.  Are we doing the right thing?  Did we choose the right curriculum?  Are we missing something?  How comforting was the following quote from Natalie Crabtree, a homeschooler in Georgia, who chronicles her journey in Turning Points:

I know that God “gently lead[s] those that are with young” (Isaiah 40:11), and      gentle leading does not involve panic, worry, or comparisons to other kids. God’s gentle leading and perfect timing mean I don’t have to wear myself out figuring out the best plan for each child. God is completely in control, and He prompts, directs, and guides us where He wants us and “he addeth no sorrow with it.” (Proverbs 10:22)

WOW!  How encouraging.  Perhaps I should mount this to the wall in my classroom as a gentle reminder that He has it all under control.

My next stop on the SchoolhouseTeachers site included the Pre-School Activities tab.  There are weekly activities here that extend the study of one book.  Books like If You Give a Mouse a Cookie, and The Button Box. I made a list of these books to check out from my public library to keep the preschooler who is temporarily at my house busy for the duration of the summer.  I don’t have a lot of experience teaching preschoolers nor am I familiar with library book titles aimed at this age group.  I am grateful someone else did the work of putting together plans for me to follow. 

One of the most popular uses of SchoolhouseTeachers.com is the lesson plan downloads for elementary, middle, and high school students.  I downloaded the middle and high school books as this is the age of my kids and found some pages very useful.  The high school planner is 401 pages long!  However, I managed to
skim each and every page.  This isn’t just a plan book.  It is a book of lists, pre-printed forms, and a book of hopes and dreams.  Anything you can think of you can put in this plan book.  I put a few forms to immediate use.  My favorite form is on p253 – the GPA form.  I haven’t seen a more straightforward form to calculate GPA.  I am also used the Volunteer Service Hours log and the Community Service Record.  You can type directly onto the pre-printed forms and save it to your hard drive.  These forms are very professional looking and will look great as an attachment to the high school portfolio or college application. 

My thoughts
SchoolhouseTeachers.com is one of many tools in the homeschooling toolbox one can pull out to add to or mix up the main plans one has in place.  It doesn’t replace the core of most of our homeschool plans – Math, Science, History, Language Arts, but it is the added stuff we need sometimes to break up the monotony of our day in and day out routine.  I believe most moms would purchase a subscription to this site for the lesson plan books alone.  I can definitely see the benefit of doing so.  It is a great way tool for recordkeeping, especially for the high school student.

From their website: Membership is yours for the first month for just $1! You’ll have full access to daily, weekly, and monthly assignments for your students and tons more material for you. Every month after the initial one, it keeps coming—new daily, weekly, and monthly lessons—all for the price of one fancy coffee ($5.95 each month).

See what my "crew mates" thought of SchoolhouseTeachers.com here.


Disclaimer:  As a member of the TOS Crew, I received this product, at no cost to me, in exchange for my honest review.  All opinions are mine.

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