Today’s review is from Egglo Entertainment.
We also got The Egg-cellent Easter Adventure (book audio download, also know as Adventure Audio Book), Egglo Treasures Scripture Scrolls, and The Egg-cellent Easter Adventure Program Guide (Curriculum).
Age Range: This product can be adapted to work with any age, but is ideal for roughly ages 4-13.
We did quite a few different things to prepare for this review. Keep reading to see if these products would be an asset to helping your family understand more about Christ’s resurrection this Easter or if you’d like to use it with a group such as a Sunday School, homeschool co-op, or outreach for the community!
The first thing we did was put together the glow-in-the-dark plastic Easter eggs. There were 12 in the box: a dozen eggs! They are the same size as typical plastic Easter eggs, and you can fill them with candy, Scripture cards (included in the Program Guide), or anything else you’d like! We charged them up by putting them out in the sun for a couple of hours. Then after the kids cleaned up the basement we had our Easter egg hunt down there at night when it was dark. It was suggested that the kids have flashlights or glow sticks while doing the egg hunt as an added safety feature (won’t run it to each other, for example).
The eggs don’t glow extremely brightly. It’s really a fun idea, and works in great with the teaching that Jesus is the Light of the world that I’ll expand on more later in the review. But I do wish they glowed brighter. I wonder if it might be neat to have battery lights or something to make them brighter. Nevertheless, my kids had lots of fun searching for them. They did it over and over!
(Photo credit for above glow-in-the-dark picture: Tiffany Cones)
I really loved the book called The Egg-cellent Easter Adventure by Darcie Cobos. It’s paper back and 39 pages long. The illustrations are wonderful! The story tells of 3 children who are sent through time on a sort of treasure hunt. They are discovering glowing Easter eggs (see a theme here?) and learning new Bible verses which they immediately find ways to apply to their lives. What I liked the best was to see how the selfish kids grow through their experience and become more like Jesus by the end of the book. It’s a fairly long story and was enjoyed by my elementary-aged kids. It was too mature for my preschoolers and too young for my middle-schoolers.
We also received the audio version of the story The Egg-cellent Easter Adventure on MP3, so the kids could listen to the story when I wasn’t able to read it to them. It’s 30 minutes long and read by Dick Wells. There are little chimes to let the child know when to turn the page and some music on the audio track.
I found that The Egg-cellent Easter Adventure Program Guide was very thorough and will be an extremely valuable asset for anyone planning an Easter egg hunt outreach at their church or home. You’ll find 60 pages which includes How to use the Guide, Tips for Decorating, Snack Suggestions, Devotion, Opening Activity, Story Options, Question & Answer, Bible Application Activity, Tips for Using the Story The Egg-cellent Easter Adventure, Bible Memory Verse Activity, and Egglo Hunt Guidelines. There are also many pages of printable invitiations, decorations, posters, and coloring pages! The theme of the event is Jesus is the light of the world and the reason we celebrate Easter. Every activity, devotion, Scripture verse, decoration, game, and even the snacks relate to the theme. We made a couple of the food items which would be nice for a snack table. Here are “torches” with pretzel sticks, marshmallows, and sprinkles. We sang “This Little Light of Mine” holding those. Next we had mini bagels with cream cheese and cucumber slices to represent the empty tomb.
Finally, we received Egglo Treasures Scripture Scrolls. This were small plastic and paper scrolls with a Scripture verse. These are the perfect size for putting inside the Egglo eggs. See below for pictures and examples of the verses included.
There is a sale on the Egglo products right now!
*Glow in the Dark Egglo Eggs ($9.99)
*The Egg-cellent Easter Adventure($9.99)
*The Egg-cellent Easter Adventure (book audio download, Adventure Audio book) ($2.99)
*Egglo Treasures Scripture Scrolls ($4.29)
*The Egg-cellent Easter Adventure Program Guide (Curriculum) ($14.99)
Follow Egglo Entertainment:
See the trailer here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rUv3MY6ytr0
Here are a few of the experiments we did: Color Changing Milk, Candle Suction Power, Lift Ice Cube with String, Matchstick Speedboat, Reverse Image with Water, and Floating Eggs. You can see in the next picture that to do these 6 experiments only took a few items that I easily found in my home.
Candle Suction Power: We put food coloring in a plate of water, put a lit candle in it, and covered it with a glass vase. When the candle went out from using up all the oxygen, it suctioned up some of the colored water!
Matchbook Speedboat: I have pictures of the second part of this experiment. Put pepper in a glass dish. Touch it with a cotton swab soaked with Dawn dish soap.
Lift an Ice Cube with a String: Put an ice cube in a glass and use a string to lift it out. The trick is to pour salt on it, wait 10 seconds, and then it will stick to the string.
Reverse Image with Water: Draw something on a piece of paper. Look through the glass and it looks the same as it’s drawn. Pour water into the glass and the image is reversed!
Color Changing Milk: Pour whole milk in a dish and drop drops of food coloring in it. Touch the milk with a cotton swab soaked in Dawn dish soap and watch the milk move away!
Floating Egg: The egg won’t float in a cup of plain water, but add salt and it floats!
One thing I love about these two DVDs is that you can see the experiments being done, rather than just reading about them. Even if you can’t do them yourself, the kids will learn a lot about science just from watching them. Jason explains everything so well–about how to set up the experiment, what items are needed, where to buy the items if they are a bit unusual, and WHY the experiment works the way it does! The only thing I would say that I didn’t like about these DVDs is that sometimes he gets a little long-winded and repeats himself. But if the focus is supposed to be for grades 1-3, I guess that’s good for them! I also liked the fact that he doesn’t use a lot of hype. He just lets the exciting experiments speak for themselves. He also focuses on safety, using safety goggles and telling the kids which experiments to make sure there is a parent present (the ones with candles, for example.)
Still to do:
We just ordered some rare earth magnets (neodymium magnets) from Amazon so we can do three more of the experiments (Amazing Magnetic Force, Build a Motor With Lights, and Build a Motor #2). We just need to get a copper pipe and bare copper wire from Home Depot this weekend. We’re studying electricity next week and magnetism the week after, so many of these experiments will be perfect to do at our co-op! I also want to use the copper pipe to do the Unburnable Money experiment. I bought some blueberry muffin mix, made the muffins, and saved the blueberry juice when I drained them. Now, the kids can write secret messages and decode them for the Invisible Ink experiment.
I love that these experiments are for the most part easy to do, and they work! The supplies were quite easy to find, and the kids could even do many of the experiments themselves. My 8-year-old daughter just asked if we could get another set. So, Jason, please come out with Volume 2 soon!
The list price for Amazing Science, Volume 1 (Physical DVD) is $24.95, but they are on sale for 28% off right now: $17.95!
Once again Sue Kilbride has hit a homerun with her historical fiction book series! Today’s review is of The Revolutionary War Adventure from the Our America Series.
I was excited to read this book because I loved her previous books so much. We find brother and sister Finn and Ginny once again traveling back in time in search of their parents who are stuck back there somewhere. This time they end up in the Revolutionary War period. The time travel remote keeps taking them to different places and events of the Revolutionary War. Every place they go the twins find relatives who help them and let them be involved in the war effort. Some of the things they do are: witness the Boston Tea Party, travel on Paul Revere’s ride, see the first fighting at Lexington, hear the Declaration of Independence being read, cross the Delaware, and witness the surrender for the victory of the Patriots. We learn a lot about the terrible conditions back then–the illness and insufficient supplies that the soldiers had. It gives us a greater appreciation for all they did to fight for our freedom.
Finn and Ginny don’t just meet relatives, but also some of the other great heroes of the war such as Paul Revere, John Hancock, and George Washington. I love the “extras” that you find in the book: The Concord Hymn by Ralph Waldo Emerson, Timeline of the Revolutionary War events, reprint of the Declaration of Independence, bibliography, and the Historical Notes where Susan shares about which characters in the book were her relatives and what events and conversations were actual and which ones she took liberty with.
The Revolutionary War Adventure is well-written, fast-paced, and exciting to read. Susan is a great writer. It’s 120 pages, so not overwhelming for younger readers. I would recommend these books for ages 10-15. They are definitely a great supplement to early American History studies!
To see a full description of the series, go here! And for you homeschoolers, there are also free pdf activities to go along with the books on this page of Susan Kilbride’s website Funtastic Unit Studies so you can make it a full unit study by doing enrichment activites: geneology, science, games, cooking, and crafts. There is also a free pdf of Revolutionary War activities to go with the book here.
On March 10th, 11th and 12th, the Kindle versions of the last three books in the Our America series will be on sale for 40% off–only $2.99! Just click on the Kindle version of the book, and you’ll see the sale price. (I’ll send out a reminder on those days–just be sure to like my Facebook page or follow me on Twitter or Pinterest)
Also, there’s a 25% off SALE of ALL Susan Kilbride’s paperback books:
The Pilgrim Adventure (Our America) (Volume 1)
To celebrate the publication of The Revolutionary War Adventure, on March 11th & 12th all of Sue’s paperback books will be on sale for 25% off! Just go to the Special Orders page of the Funtastic Unit Studies and type in the code: HAVY4KRQ at checkout to receive the discount. Orders will be placed through CreateSpace, a division of Amazon.
Susan has also written a science book called Science Unit Studies for Homeschoolers and Teachers. See my review of it here.
(Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this book in order to write this honest review. This post contains affiliate links.)
Today I have a guest post from Nikolas Baron to share with you about writing and using Grammarly to help identify and fix all those grammar mistakes!
How Writers Write: Differences in the Writing Process
Writing is like any other creative activity: each writer has a different method. Some writers lock themselves away in a dark room with only a desk and a typewriter because they believe that’s how they do their best writing. Some take trips around the world in order to be more in touch with their setting. Some writers write on the couch while their favorite football team plays. Some writers write 1,000 words of their novel every day because they believe something is better than nothing. Even though all writers have their own method to finish their work, every one of them proofreads. Proofreading is the essential quick picker-upper of bad grammar, poor dialogue, misspelled words, and faulty plot points. Some writers rely heavily on editors to clean their work, but all writers must at least be able to proofread their work enough to get noticed. No editor will accept a sloppy manuscript, no matter how good the story is. Let’s explore how writers get their work done and what they do after the blood, sweat, and tears have fallen on paper.
As I mentioned above, every writer is different. When you start the writing process, it’s important to organize your story. However, how do we do this? Brainstorming, storyboarding, outlining, using sets of notecards, or even working on old napkins, receipts, or photographs; these are all methods I’ve heard of from writers. Personally, I’m not a huge outliner because I’m unable to think of every little piece of the story before I begin. I do much better writing and figuring the story out as I go. The opposite is true for some writers, though; outlining and organizing their story is crucial to their start-up process. They don’t feel ready to write until they’ve completely organized, and detailed the entire story down to the smallest item. Every writer needs to do a little bit of organizing so he or she has a cohesive direction to go in, but creativity doesn’t always lend itself to calm; sometimes it thrives in chaos.
Are you the writer who has a deadline but waits three months in to get started? Are you the writer who has six months to write a book, finishes it in two, and spends the rest of the time cleaning it up and cutting the fat? Procrastination works for some writers. They feel as if they have this burst of creativity and they can write for hours on end. Planning and getting the work done early to sit and edit for a few months is the process for others. You have to pick the method that works best for you. Some cave under pressure while writing if they wait until the last minute. Some write their best work under the fear of a deadline. A missed deadline though, is unacceptable no matter what your process is. Don’t worry if you haven’t quite figured out what type of writer you are yet. The more you write, the more you define your process. However, if you are just starting out, and even if you’re a veteran, you should never miss a deadline due to your creative process.
We have finished our novel! Hooray! Now the painful process of finding errors, deleting characters, and trimming unnecessary pieces. Proofreading can be your best friend. I wrote a short story that turned out to be 75 pages. After trimming out non-essential details, extra dialog, and a few scenes that didn’t forward the progress of the story, I ended up with 45 pages. Forty five clean, well-edited, error-free, succinct pages. Although it was painful to cut out a lot of my hard work, I knew it was necessary. It’s sort of like weight loss for your novel; you never realize how much extra fat you’re carrying around until it’s gone. Some writers like to use their own personal editors, but if you’re just starting out, online resources can be a huge help. I like Grammarly for instance. Grammarly’s proofreading tool helps me check for errors quickly and accurately. It also identifies my most common errors and teaches me how to avoid them. Avoiding errors means less proofreading work next time. Whether you’re a planner or a waiter, an organizer or a slob, or a sit in a dark dreary room writer or sit outside on the river writer, each writer has their own process. Keep writing and no matter how unique your writing process is, you’ll create creative, catching, and champion work.
By Nikolas Baron (https://plus.google.com/109993203182988419388)
Nikolas discovered his love for the written word in Elementary School, where he started spending his afternoons sprawled across the living room floor devouring one Marc Brown children’s novel after the other and writing short stories about daring pirate adventures. After acquiring some experience in various marketing, business development, and hiring roles at internet startups in a few different countries, he decided to re-unite his professional life with his childhood passions by joining Grammarly’s marketing team in San Francisco. He has the pleasure of being tasked with talking to writers, bloggers, teachers, and others about how they use Grammarly’s online proofreading application to improve their writing. His free time is spent biking, travelling, and reading.
(Disclosure: I received a free, 30-day premium account of Grammarly in exchange for posting this article.)
This app for iPad is geared towards children in grades Pre K – K. It is an educational app for helping young children to learn about the alphabet, to learn the sounds of the letters, to practice writing the letters, and to begin sounding out simple 3-letter words.
When you open the app you hear about “How Two Sisters Invented the Alphabet”.
The books are neat because they are interactive. They tell the story of how long ago two sisters were trying to write things down, so they decided to invent “letters.” They decided to make each letter look like something that begins with that letter. So, “A” looks like an acrobat, “B” looks like a butterfly, and “C” looks like a cat. Each time a new letter is introduced, the story explains why the letter is being represented by that picture. I love this because it will help the kids get this information into their right brains quicker. They have more associations rather than just looking at a black-and-white plain “B” and learning that it is a “B.” Then the letter sound is pronounced. The kids are told to say the word: acrobat or butterfly or cat. (I think this is hard for many 3-year-olds since very few of them have good pronunciation. It rarely recognized my son when he said the word. Thankfully, after the second attempt the app moves on. It usually worked for my pronunciation, but not always.)
Then the next thing to do is practice writing the letter. It is described for the child, and then they use their finger on the iPad to trace the letter. They don’t have to be perfect–just fill in the empty spaces. This is good for those little ones who aren’t too good with fine motor skills yet.
The picture below shows a scene from Book 1:
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The price of the Talking Shapes app from the iTunes store is $5.99.