The crazy life of the ClarkClan. Living a life of grace through Jesus Christ.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

The Power of a Story Book

     Today our family saw how a story book can affect a child. I read the book Owen by Kevin Henkes to Ben and Rebekah when they were 4 and 3. They both loved the book and we have read and re-read it many times. I think they both identified closely with the story. Both of them have loved a special blanket, just like Owen does in the book. Ben gave his blanket up a few years ago, but Rebekah still has “pink”, her special blanket.

     Over the years, Rebekah has acted out different scenes with her “pink” just like Owen. Today was the final ,most dramatic, Owen scene yet. Today, Rebekah cut her beloved “pink” into small squares, just like the end of the book.

     I, who can be very sentimental, was appalled at first. But then I realized it is Rebekah growing up. She doesn’t need the blanket like she did when she was younger. And then I realized I may be wrong. Rebekah was so excited that her blanket was in small pieces. She can now carry a part of her blanket everywhere she goes, because it can go in her pocket.

     What am I going to do with that girl? Who knows what she will come up with next?


Friday, May 20, 2011

Wordy Qwerty



  • Reading and Spelling Software from Talking Fingers
  • Designed for 2nd & 3rd grade ages 7-9
  • Helps develop reading and writing fluency
  • 20 lessons

     In 20 consecutive lessons Wordy Qwerty presents 20 different spelling rules and puts those rules into practice.  There are six activities within each lesson. Each lesson introduces a song for help in remembering the spelling rule. The lessons teach how to recognize frequently repeated patterns in words. Two keyboards, Qwerty and Midi, guide students through the lessons. The goal is to help Midi build a music machine. With each lesson the machine is slowly being built.

ClarkClan Thoughts and Opinions

     Wordy Qwerty is presented by Talking Fingers. Earlier this year we reviewed a program called Read, Write and Type by this same company. (To read that review click here.)  Ben (9) and Rebekah (7) both loved Read, Write and Type and were very excited to learn that we were going to review Wordy Qwerty. So, needless to say, they went into the review period a little biased towards the program. They were not disappointed. They both really enjoyed it.

      Ben finished the 20 lessons within the review period which was about a month and a half long. This did not surprise me as Ben reads well above grade level and is a phenomenal speller.  He liked the program and he also liked being able to put spelling rules to words.  While Ben academically did not need the spelling or reading help using Wordy Qwerty helped him brush up on his typing skills.

     Rebekah is through lesson 16 on Wordy Qwerty. She has been a great subject for this review because although she reads well, her spelling leaves something to be desired.  The next few pictures are a sampling of activities from Rebekah’s log-in to help guide you through a portion of a lesson.

Wordy Qwerty home page


This is the Home Screen that shows what lessons have been completed.



Wordy Qwerty Song page

This is the song page. You will hear the song being sung and can follow along reading the lyrics. Then you can click on the microphone and sing the song yourself karaoke style.

Wordy Qwerty game page


This is the Recycler game that helps teach the difference between real and nonsense words.


Wordy Qwerty typing game page 2

This is the writing portion. A two line rhyme is read and shown on the screen. Then only the first line is shown and the second has to be typed in from memory. The rhyme can be repeated as often as needed.

Wordy Qwerty Midi's machine

This is Midi’s music machine that is being made as each lesson is completed. At the end of each lesson you can see more of the machine as it is coming together.

     There are six activities for each lesson. They are presented in the same order for each lesson.  The activities are:

  1. Patterns
  2. Karaoke
  3. Recycler
  4. Pop-a-Word
  5. Write stories
  6. Read stories

    The lessons are being “graded” that the parent can look at and monitor how their child is doing. The student does not see a grade or even how much was missed.  I was a little remiss at the beginning of this program and didn’t check for about 5 lessons. When I did I found that Ben had a 100% as I would expect, but that Rebekah was much worse.  Since the program has a pre-set 70% pass rate, I did a little research to find out why it let Rebekah continue even though she did not meet this standard for most of the lessons.  What I found out was that while the first time a student does not pass, he has to repeat the lesson, subsequent times will allow the child to move ahead. This is done so that there is no discouragement with the program. I also discovered that any lesson can be done again and again for extra practice.  This is what I did with Rebekah, I would have her go back and listen to the songs again and play a few of the activities in each lesson.

     I would recommend the Wordy Qwerty program as a spelling supplement. My true test subject for this, Rebekah, is starting to spell a bit better. It is not a miraculous turn around, but I hear her singing a rule every now and then when she is writing.  My plan is to continue to have her go through the lessons and then review the ones she is having trouble with.

      Talking Fingers has provided a sample of their Wordy Qwerty program. Click on this link to access lesson one from the program.


    Wordy Qwerty is available from the Talking Fingers website. It is available in two formats

You can buy an online edition with a 5 year license that also includes an audio cd of the 20 songs in the program.

  • $25.00 for one user
  • $40.00 for two users
  • $52.50 for three users
  • $60.00 for four users
  • $71.25 for five users

The Home Edition is $35.00 and includes the program CD, program guide, and JingleSpells,a cd of all 20 songs contained in Wordy Qwerty.

     Want to read more reviews of the Wordy Qwerty program. Visit the Crew Blog to find many reviews of this product.

As an Independent contractor for The Old Schoolhouse and member of TOS Homeschool Crew I received  Wordy Qwerty online version for free from Talking Fingers in exchange for my honest review of their product.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Mad Dog Math

Let Ruff the dog guide you as you complete basic math drills



Mad Dog Math Basic Facts

  • Addition, Subtraction, Multiplication and Division drills
  • Timed in 2 minute, 1 minute and 30 second increments
  • Earn student Club stickers by completing levels
  • Easy to Use
  • 10 minutes a day commitment
  • Track the progress of multiple users.
  • 3 levels plus a challenge level
  • For grades K-5, remedial middle school and high school

     Mad Dog Math is a download program that helps your child drill basic math facts.  Students have 20 -24 problems to complete as fast as they can. When they complete the 2 minute drills, they can move to the 1 minute drills and eventually complete the problems in 30 seconds or less. The goal is to securely imbed these basic facts in your child’s memory. Mad Dog Math tests the students using Fact Families. They can miss 2 or fewer problems to be able to move on to the next drill.  If your child misses more than two they can “go fetch” a new set of problems from the same fact family to drill.

Mad Dog Math screenshot

ClarkClan Thoughts and Opinions

     Mad Dog Math is a simple, easy to use program. I liked the clean uncluttered screen. I also liked that once an answer was typed in the program automatically moved to the next problem. There was no need to hit the enter button after every problem. There are  three levels. The first and second level focus on addition and subtraction. The third level is multiplication and division. The final level is a challenge level. I liked that you could press the “progress” bone and see exactly where you were in the level. 

     We had mixed reviews of Mad Dog Math in our house. Ben (9) and Rebekah (7) were the ones that tried out this program. To begin, I think I should say that both Ben and Rebekah have no trouble with math facts. They both know addition and subtraction and are just starting multiplication.

Ben absolutely loved the program. He enjoys math drills and has a great time using Mad Dog Math.  He is motivated  by seeing the different fact families he has passed. Ben liked the challenge of going through the families to see how fast he could do them. Ben also thought the “dog” theme was funny. He liked pressing on the dog bones for a new worksheet and listening for the dog woofing when a new problem set was being “fetched”.

Rebekah, on the other hand, did not take to the program.  She had no trouble with the math facts she just found the computer program boring. She was also upset to learn that once she passed a level she was to do it again, this time faster.  Rebekah prefers pencil and paper drills with the excitement of mom starting the timer and the celebration with mom when she completes her paper in under the time.

    As I said earlier, we had  mixed reviews from in our family. I feel this is a very solid program.  It reinforces those all important basic math facts, while making those facts automatic with the timing feature. I really like that the program supports multiple users. I also like that when your child logs out of the program it automatically saves their place.


     Mad Dog Math is a downloadable program available online from the  Mad Dog Math website.  It has three pricing levels.

  • $19.99 for a 1 year license
  • $29.99 for a 2 year license
  • $39.99 for a perpetual license

     I was not the only one to review Mad Dog Math. Visit the Crew Blog and read what my Crew Mates thought of the program.

As an Independent contractor for The Old Schoolhouse and member of TOS Homeschool Crew I received  a download of  Mad Dog Math for free from Mad Dog Math in exchange for my honest review of their product.

Monday, May 16, 2011

The Cruise is Docking

     The ship is pulling into port this week. This Review Cruise is coming in to dock.  In May of 2010 ,I was chosen to set sail on The Old Schoolhouse Magazines Review Crew Cruise. What a voyage this year has been. When I became a part of this cruise, I had no idea of the adventure that awaited me.

     My friend Vickie, of Tumbleweed News stopped me at church one day last Feb or March and asked if I was interested in being on the Review Crew for The Old Schoolhouse Magazine (TOS). I had heard of TOS but it had been many years since I had seen a magazine and knew nothing about it. Vickie told me of all the fun and exciting new products she had reviewed during the Maiden Voyage. It sounded like fun to me as well as fulfilling my love of looking at and trying out new curriculum. So Vickie came over one afternoon and while the kids played she helped me set up a blog. I then had a “try out” test review and was accepted to be a member of the Crew.

     Blogging was a brand new experience for me. The only thing I knew about blogging was what I had learned from one of my favorite movies “Julie and Julia”. The one line from that movie that still runs through my head is “What do you think blogging is? It is me, me, me all the time.” Well, I started off slow, a post here, a post there. My real introduction started in July when the review cruise started in earnest. Suddenly I had products to use and then tell how I felt about them.

     My first reviews were agonizing for me. I spent hours trying to form my thoughts about the product into coherent sentences. I wanted my reviews to be fair and balanced and most important of all, for me, enjoyable to read. As I look over my list of review products, I feel nostalgic. My first products included Math Tutor DVD’s, Vocabulary Cartoons, and books from Salem Ridge Press. I remember well the overwhelming sense of responsibility;  that these companies had provided me with  products for free in exchange for my honest opinion. This meant that even if I did not enjoy the product or it didn’t work for us, I had to tell them that, in a nice manner of course. I feel very fortunate that the first products we reviewed we truly enjoyed.

We quickly settled down into cruising in calm waters. My kids were just as excited as I was when word of a new review came out. We would all eagerly watch the mail or for UPS to deliver the next goodie. We would then begin to integrate the product into our school day. Some are easier to work into than others. Some, like TenMarks and BigIQ Kids, we enjoyed so much we have continued to use them.Other products, like Lanschool  I had never heard of and didn’t know how much I needed it until I reviewed it. 

     I asked my kids what their favorite products from this year were. Sarah enjoys Artistic Pursuits, Latin Alive and she still reads and learns from Vocabulary Cartoons. Ben said anything math related was his favorite. Ben also enjoyed our Quicksand study and Speekee. Rebekah quickly told me her very favorite was Speekee and the Circle C Beginnings book. It was hard for me to pick what my favorite product was, I enjoyed using every product, even the ones that did not work for our family. Trying out products that were not a good fit helped me stretch and grow as a teacher to my children. If I had to pick one product that I enjoyed the most I would have to say that I enjoyed the Nutrition 101: Choose Life book.

     The other aspect of being on the Crew that surprised me was the camaraderie that occurs. Reading other Crew Mates blogs is an adventure in itself. Learning how other family’s homeschool and the trials and troubles they go through if fascinating to me. The Crew also has their own online forum where friendships are forged. Being able to talk out difficulties and triumphs with others using the same products is a blessing. But more than that, just being able to bring various homeschooling issues up with a crew of homeschoolers is a great joy. There are many, many years of experience on the forum boards that can help with all issues, schooling or domestic.

     I am very grateful to have been re-introduced The Old Schoolhouse Magazine. I am very thankful that God has allowed me the opportunity to be a part of this experience. I am looking forward to setting sail again and see what adventures my second cruise will hold.  And don’t forget to visit the Crew Blog and read about all the wonderful products that we review! Bon Voyage!

Bright Ideas Press- WonderMaps



by Bright Ideas Press

  • Customizable using Layers
  • Historical or Modern Day Maps
  • Black and White or Color options
  • Outline, Reference, Political or Topographical maps
  • Over 60 world maps
  • Over 60 USA maps
  • 125 Historical maps including Biblical maps

Bright Ideas Press has a new product that adds geography lessons to almost any subject.  History, Literature, Science, Current Events and Bible studies have added depth when a map is involved. Studying Europe? Quickly print off a map of Europe. Focusing specifically on France? Click on France to bring up a detailed map. Pick the features to include, rivers, cities, borders, country names and more. All features quickly customize with a click of a button. Explore the map on the computer or print out.

WonderMaps software is an Adobe PDF program. It is user friendly with many customizable features. For example, say you want to find a map of England.

1.First go to the World Map menu.

WonderMaps World map

2.Click on Europe.


3. Click on the picture of England.


4. Now the fun begins. On the left side of the page choose which layers you would like to include.

WonderMapslayers features

There are many facets to the WonderMaps program. This video explains in even more detail the features of the program.

WonderMaps video tutorial

     The Teacher’s Guide included within the program is very in-depth.  To help you get started it includes a quick start guide, video tutorial, and user manual. There are six resources to enhance the use of the program.  These resources range from Bright Ideas to Mapping Projects. As a bonus, two workshop MP3 files are included  for download.

ClarkClan Opinion

    WonderMaps is an impressive program.  I like to bring geography into many different subjects. Our globe is in an easily accessible spot and used often during our school week.  With WonderMaps, we still used our globe to begin with, but then were able to precisely pinpoint what country we were studying and print out a map to have handy.  For example, we were reading a book about missionaries to Burma, Adoniram and Ann Judson. I was able to go to WonderMaps, find Asia in the main menu, then click on Southeast Asia and print out a map of Burma, now called Myanmar, with only the features I requested. I liked that we were able to put into context where Burma (Myanmar) was in relation to the other Southeast Asian countries.

WonderMaps Asia


     Historical and Theme maps are a great resource with this program.  There are four categories of Historical maps included

  • The Ancients:  Creation to 33 AD
  • The Middle Ages:  33 AD to 1456 AD
  • The Renaissance, Reformation & Growth of Nations: 1457 AD to 1707 AD
  • Revolutions to Rising Times: 1708 AD to Present times

     My kids have been learning the different state names and locations. With WonderMaps I am easily able to create a map of the United States having taken off everything except the outlines of each state. This was useful for the kids to be able to write the name of each state.

WonderMaps US no names

     As you can see from the many pictures I have shown, this is a very detailed map program. I liked that while it was very intensive, it was also very easy to use.  As I was exploring this program, I called Matthew (18) over to see how neat it was.  His comment went something like, “I wish we would have had this when I was studying American and World History. Those maps from World War I and II would have been great to use.”  I felt the same way for him, but am excited that we will have it for Sarah (14), Ben (9) and Rebekah (7).


     WonderMaps is available from Bright Ideas Press.  The price of this program is $49.95.  It is available for PC or Mac and either in a CD or download format.  WonderMaps does require that you have Adobe Reader v.9.1 or higher, but this is a free program that is readily available online or through the Bright Ideas Press website.

     Bright Ideas Press has many different homeschooling products available. They specialize in practical, fun, and affordable history, geography, and science resources.  Last Fall I reviewed another of their products called Composers.  Click here to read that review and find out more about what Bright Ideas Press has to offer.

     As always, I am not the only one to review this program. Visit the Crew Blog to read what my Crew Mates thought about the program.

As an Independent contractor for The Old Schoolhouse and member of TOS Homeschool Crew I received  a download of  WonderMaps  for free from Bright Ideas Press in exchange for my honest review of their product.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Shoshone Falls

 Shoshone Falls May 2011 032

    Yesterday we took a  trip to Twin Falls, ID to see the Shoshone Falls.   Shoshone Falls is located about 7 miles from the city of Twin Falls, ID.  The falls are higher than Niagara Falls, dropping 212 feet into the Snake River Canyon.This spring the falls are running really high. It was running at 18,200 cubic feet per second. The water pouring over the falls was amazing and the rainbow that was created by the spray was impressive as well. 

Shoshone Falls May 2011 034

Blog News

     I wanted to thank Sarah. She sat with me this afternoon and helped me pick a new background for my blog. Then she patiently sat and helped pick out all the new colors for all the text and links.  It takes quite a bit of time to get it to look right. Then, just when you think it looks good, you ask another opinion (this time from Matt) and get more input on what color works well where.

      Now that soccer season is over, I have more time to put into my blog. It seems that when life gets busy, the first thing to be put aside is the blog (except for reviews). 

     About a year ago I started the ClarkClan Craziness blog.  I was trying out   for The Old Schoolhouse Magazines Review Crew and a blog was required.  It was nerve-wracking and intimidating for me.  Write things that other people would see? What if people didn’t like what I had to say?  It sure has been an interesting year!  I have found that I absolutely love reviewing different homeschool products.  It has been amazing to me, that after 10 years of homeschooling, I did not receive one product I already owned.  I found products I absolutely loved and have continued using, and conversely I found some that I decided were just not going to work for our family.

     Now the TOS Review Crew for 2010-2011 is winding down.  The last reviews will be out the end of May.  This fun, busy, tough, amazing year is just about over.  But I do not need to be too sad about this year coming to an end.  Why?  I was accepted and invited back to be a member of the TOS Review Crew for the 2011-2012 year!  I am very thankful and grateful to be asked to be on the Crew again.  So on this blog the reviews will continue to be the mainstay, but I am also going to try to branch out and try some new things.  I am definitely looking forward to this next year.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011


GoTrybe logo

  • Get Moving
  • Healthy Eating Habits
  • Connect with Friends
  • Find Motivation
  • All of this and more with GOTRYBE

GoTrybe offers online exercise videos tailored to kids of all ages. Fitness experts train and guide kids in a variety of exercises and wellness tips designed to have fun and stay active all at the same time.

About the Program

     GoTrybe features three different programs depending on age. ZooDoos is designed for kids kindergarten through fifth grade. Trybe180 is for sixth  through eighth grade and NextTrybe is high school age. 

     Each Trybe member will need their own log-in information. Then the fun begins.  Choose an avatar and personalize it.  Then choose what type of exercise you would like. Make your own routine or find a pre-made routine. Learn about nutrition with short  (1 minute) video lessons. Listen to athletes talk about their motivation and then follow it up with wellness tips.  Each activity earns points that can be spent to “buy” new clothes and accessories for your avatar.  You can also “friend” your friends with your online profile and be able to give shout-outs and messages to your friends. 

Go Trybe Ben Homepage

GoTrybe My Page showing avatar and friend information.





Go Trybe make your own workout Ben

GoTrybe Make your own workout page. Just drag and drop the exercises you want for a customized program.


    Each exercise session, whether a make your own or pre-made routine, starts with warm-ups. Then it moves into the main cardiovascular exercise and ends with strength, flexibility and cool down.  Instructors are friendly, upbeat and encouraging.  Workouts include routines such as: kickboxing, circuit training, yoga routines, hip hop dance routines, stretching and flexibility.  On occasion extra equipment is used, but it is never a necessity and options are given so it is not necessary to buy anything extra.     

ClarkClan thoughts

     Sarah (14), Ben (9), and Rebekah (7) all tested the GoTrybe program.  All three loved the workouts.  Ben was so excited from his very first workout when he did a kickboxing routine.  Rebekah has always wanted dance lessons and loved being able to learn some dance routines. Sarah, as well, loved each workout routine she did. I had a great time working out with Sarah. I loved that Sarah would say “Come on, Mom, let’s exercise.”  Doing it together made exercising fun as we could laugh at mistakes and challenge each other when things got hard.

     There were a few stand-outs from the GoTrybe program.  I liked that the exercises were tailored for each age group.  Ben and Rebekah using the ZooDoo’s program had no trouble keeping up and learning the exercises for their routines.  Rebekah loved one routine that had her using a stuffed animal to stretch out and exercise with.  Ben was  excited to find a routine that said would help him with quick feet for soccer.

     Every workout has a main instructor and then two or more kids performing the workouts. The ZooDoo’s program had kids from kindergarten to about fifth grade in each video. The NextTrybe used  high school age kids. The aspect that I liked was the emphasis on working at your own pace and level.  For example, one strength and flexibility routine for the high school level had a main instructor and two boys working out. The instructor at the beginning showed what the exercise was and who was doing a modified “less intense”  version of the exercise and who was doing the “more intense” version of the exercise.  The instructors are careful to explain how to perform each exercise and trying it slowly first

     When I learned that hip hop dance routines were a part of the program, I was a little concerned. We, as a family, do not usually listen to hip hop type music or dance in this manner. I was pleasantly surprised to find out that the music was a basic beat, no words, and the routines were not risqué in the least and were quite the cardiovascular workouts.  Usually for any routine, we would turn on our own music to workout by and just had the computer loud enough to hear what the instructors were saying.

      One aspect of the program that we did not particularly use was the “friend” aspect. The only people my kids “friended”  were each other. Online chatting and messaging is not something I have let my kids do, so we continued with our standards by not allowing this. This in no way detracted from our enjoyment of the program.


     I would recommend the GoTrybe fitness program.  We thoroughly enjoyed the workouts.  My first thoughts when we began using the program were along the lines of, “Why do my kids need exercise videos online? They go outside to  play and are involved in sports.”  What I found was that GoTrybe added to my active kids lives, not replaced other activity times.  I have often said that one way to keep kids happy, especially as they go into the teenage years is to get them lots of exercise.  Our experience was that my kids would do their workouts, loving the challenge of learning new physical activities and then would be more physical all around.  This program has been great for our rainy, cold spring as well. When it was too wet to ride bikes, skateboard, rollerblade, they could just do more GoTrybe workouts.

      Another surprise for me was the need for all three to have their own log-ins.  Initially, I had Sarah set up with her own, and then thought Ben and Rebekah could share one.  Besides the fact that they could not agree on an avatar together, I quickly found out they enjoy different types of exercises.  Ben is very self-motivated to exercise. When he began to pick his own routines he picked a wide variety of activities, including the dance routines that he would not have done with his little sister in the room.  Rebekah likes to exercise, but prefers to workout with someone. So I usually would workout with her (as well as doing the more intense workouts with Sarah).  Sarah is a fastpitch player and loved how the workouts helped her cross-train and be more agile for her sport.


     You can try out GoTrybe free for a day by clicking here. After the free trial, the program cost is $19.95 for a year. Without the free trial the price is $39.95 a year.

     GoTrybe also sponsors a Kids Fitness Blog.  As of today (5/11/11) the Kids Fitness Blog is advertising that for a limited time you can get GoTrybe for .$0.99 a month. Visit for more information.

     The pricing is the only issue I have with GoTrybe. We would like to continue using this program.  However, having to buy three separate programs at $19.95 is a bit spendy for our family. I would like to see a “family discount” option available for multiple users within a family.

     I am not the only one who reviewed GoTrybe.  Visit the Crew Blog and read what my Crew Mates thought about the program for their family.

As an Independent contractor for The Old Schoolhouse and member of TOS Homeschool Crew I received  a free trial of  GoTrybe for free from GoTrybe in exchange for my honest review of their product.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

The Old Schoolhouse 19 Gifts


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PLUS TOS is throwing in a 20th BONUS GIFT -- a John Taylor Gatto E-Book entitled Hammering at the Walls of Public Schooling AND MP3 recording of him speaking on the topics of "Open Source Education" and "Everything You Know About Institutional Schooling is Wrong!”

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Friday, May 6, 2011

Circle C Beginnings Book

4182 cover idea.indd


Series:          Circle C Beginnings

Title:       Andi’s Indian Summer Author:         Susan K. Marlow

Illustrator:   Leslie Gammelgaard

Publisher:     Kregel Publications

Age Range:   6-8 years

Price:             $4.99



About the Book

     Andi Carter is a six year old California girl living on a ranch in the late 1800’s.  Full of fun and mischief, Andi and her friend Riley explore the ranch and have a hand in training Taffy, a new pony for Andi.  Riley also shares a deliciously scary “dime novel” about Indian captives with Andi. During a trail ride, Andi and Riley get lost and are found by a Yokut Indian. Friend or foe? Is the story that Riley shared with Andi true or is it just make believe?

About the Series

     The Circle C Beginnings series contains four books with two more coming in August of 2011. The series is about Andi Carter, a six year old girl living in California in the year 1874. The series is designed for kids ages 6-8, with shorter chapters, easy to read text, and excellent illustrations.  


Book Extras

     Andi and her pony Taffy have their own website,  On this site you can find activity guides, coloring pages, online puzzles.  The activity guides are 20 pages long and include maps, dot to dot’s, vocabulary, writing, math, history, coloring, and crafts.  Eight coloring pages are also available for each book. These coloring pages are illustrations from the books. 


ClarkClan Thoughts and Opinions

     Andi’s Indian Summer was a runaway success in our house.  Rebekah was the one chosen to be the “tester” for this book. She is seven years old and reads well, but it is not her favorite subject. I knew this book was something special when Rebekah set her timer for 30 minutes for her silent reading time, and then re-set the timer for another 30 minutes to finish the book. This is unheard of in our house. When I asked her questions about the book, she was able to narrate the entire story back to me.  Rebekah was so enthusiastic about the book that her nine year old brother, Ben had to read it as well.  Both of them agreed that it was a good book and they would like to read more in the series. 

     After Rebekah finished reading the book, I printed off the activity guide for Andi’s Indian Summer.  We had a great time going through the guide together.  I liked the variety of activities offered. We took three days to go through the guide.  Some of the activities Rebekah did on her own, dot to dot, mapping, and fill in the missing letter puzzle.  Some of the activities we did together like the Venn diagram and the Yokut flood story.  I really appreciated the way the guides extended the use of this book.

How to Buy

      There are multiple ways to purchase The Circle C Beginnings series.

  •  Kregel Publications is offering 30% off the  $4.99 cost of the book until August 31, 2011. 
  • The author’s  Andi and Taffy website also offers the book. for $4.99 per book or $15.96 for all four. The neat thing about purchasing from this website is the  option to have the books personalized. 
  •  Amazon. com sells the books for $4.99 each.
  • carries the series for $4.49.

     I am not the only one who reviewed The Circle C Beginnings series. My Crew Mates were all sent different books in the series. Visit the Crew Blog to read what other bloggers thought about the books in this series.

As an Independent contractor for The Old Schoolhouse and member of TOS Homeschool Crew I received  a copy of  Andi’s Indian Summer for free from Kregel Publications in exchange for my honest review of their product.