Tuesday, March 11, 2008


Let me introduce you all to one of my new favorite books. Now this tidbit of information is coming, not from the Christian fiction lover in me, but rather from the homeschool mom in me that never really enjoyed certain subjects myself when I was the student. I had heard about a book called "Math Doesn't Suck" written by actress Danica McKellar (Winnie on the Wonder Years and more recently of The West Wing) who quit acting for 4 years to go to college and discover that she is actually a math genius. She wrote this book with the focus of girls in middle school math, but I am using it with my 3 oldest children (8, 10 & 11) all at the same time. In fact, yesterday my 5 year old son joined his siblings in multiplying fractions... but that is how well Danica explains things, even my 5 year old can do middle school math. The most important part of this book to me is that she explains things so well, that I feel confident to explain them to my kids - it is giving me teacher confidence in areas I might not have otherwise had it. In the last 2 weeks we have done -
  • factoring
  • prime numbers
  • Greatest Common Factors
  • Fractions
  • Pie Charts
  • Multiplying Fractions
  • Dividing Fractions
  • Mixed Numbers
  • Improper Fractions
  • Reciprocal Fractions
  • Converting Mixed Numbers to Improper Fractions and back again
  • Equivalent Fractions
  • Reducing Fractions
Did I mention that is just in 2 weeks? When we move out of the fraction section we still have:

  • Decimal Section
  • Percent Section
  • Algebra Section
I am just totally excited about this book because my kids are excited about this book. When I open it up they all pull out their white boards raring to go! They actually argue about who gets to work the problems on the big board! :-)

I just wanted to share my latest treasure with any of you other homeschool moms that might find it interesting. **One note I will make though - it is written for middle school girls, in an effort to be cool the book does have a math horoscope section - I actually went looking for it one night to black it out and couldn't find it, so it is obviously not a big part of the book :-) Of course the way I am using the book (as a teacher's guide) my kids will never have reason to go through that section anyway. This is not a book giveaway - but I would love to hear from any of you that have a favorite school resource you would like to recommend to the rest of us - something that really makes your kids perk up for school or has really helped you as a teacher - any suggestions????

1 comment:

Lora Lease said...

I have too many fun homeschool things to mention, but one we are really enjoying right now is "Lamps, Scrolls & Goatskin Bottles: A Handbook of Bible Customs for Kids" (one of the books we are currently using with WinterPromise for our ancients study).

It is very informative, with tons of fun and interesting information on what life was like during Biblical times.

Taken from a couple of websites: This is a "Kid-friendly introduction to Hebrew customs and culture that gets them involved with learning about
education, homes, foods, playthings, clothing and village life in Israel".


"This book should be on everyone's resource shelf - More than just a description of life in Bible times, this book shows your kids what it was like---and gives them the opportunity to re-create it! Quality photos and illustrations help children visualize biblical settings, while easy directions from recipes, art projects, models, sample scenes, etc. make it useful for most stories relating to Jesus. Ages 6 to 11!

pg. 89 - make your class like a synagogue
pg. 90 - classroom exercises
pg. 98 - children
pg. 116 - carpenter
pg. 126 - toys, games, music, and dance
pg. 136 - games