Archive for the ‘Reviews’ Category

Free Resources: Storynory

Wednesday, September 8th, 2010

I briefly mentioned in a previous post, but I thought it deserved a post of its own.  This is one of my absolute favorite free homeschool resources.  Each week, Storynory posts a podcast of an audio story for children.  They share an impressive variety of tales, including classics, fairy tales, and fascinating original stories.  For free, you might expect amateurish recordings, but you won’t find those here.  Each professional-quality mp3 features one of several engaging storytellers.  Their “guiding spirit,” Bertie the frog, acts as a spokesperson and stars in several original tales of his own.

You can download all of the audio stories free of charge from their website, or subscribe by iTunes, iPhone app, email, or RSS feed.  If you prefer your children to follow along as they listen, the transcript of each story is published on the website.  I imagine the text would work well for copywork, although we haven’t gotten that far in our curriculum.  For variety, we incorporate the audio stories into the kids’ bedtime routine from time to time.  We haven’t done many long road trips, but I plan to load up my iPhone before we leave on our upcoming family vacation.

Storynory has become a staple around our house.  I understand the importance of reading to my kids, but with three kids under five, I don’t get much time each day to sit down and read.  Storynory allows me to expose the kids to good literature when I don’t have a free hand to hold a book.

Note: We did not receive any compensation for this unsolicited review.  We just wanted to share this wonderful resource with you!

Levi and Song School Greek DVD – First impressions

Sunday, September 5th, 2010

Levi watching Song School Greek DVD

We received Song School Greek, Teacher’s Edition on Saturday.  This is published by Classical Academic Press.    We opened and started looking through it.  The teacher’s edition does not include the music CD.  You need to get the student edition for that.  We are ordering that as well and will have a post on that as well in the near future.

Song School Greek, Teacher Edition is targeted towards parents who know little or nothing of Greek.  The song school products are designed for Kindergarten through 2nd grade.  Since Levi is strong in language, we decided to try it for preschool.  Even though the DVD is geared towards teaching parents, Levi still enjoyed the alphabet (or alphabeta), especially when it was as a song.  Isaac even paid attention to it.

The curriculum covers both traditional/koine (New Testament era) and modern pronunciations.  It advises teaching one pronunciation or the other.  We will be teaching traditional pronunciation.  It is designed towards being fun for the age group, but straightforward and comprehensive.  The content is not “dumbed down” in any way.  The DVD also includes a chapter-by-chapter section to assist parents with teaching each chapter of the book.  I look forward to probably needing that assistance.

My initial impression of the Song School Greek, Teacher’s Edition is very positive.  The price is very reasonable, and it is well-targeted to those who (like me) think gyros when hearing “Greek.”  We will post more about it as we begin using this product to introduce Greek to our children.