Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Swagbucks reaches $100 Million Milestone! (earn EXTRA Swagbucks today!)

After 7 plus years, Swagbucks has reached a major milestone today - 
$100 million in gift cards and cash paid out to its members!

Some of you may know that I have been a member of Swagbucks for a very long time... I mention it every once in awhile. Well, I just checked, and I signed up in December 2008... almost since the beginning! Over the course of almost 7 years I've earned 27,800 swagbucks, which translates into a little over $500 in Amazon Gift cards! Not too shabby for mostly just doing normal internet searches!

Back to the point at hand... To celebrate, Swagbucks is giving away tons of points (called SB) that *you* can use to get free gift cards or cash back!

I wanted to share some information with you on how you can earn extra swagbucks today, and maybe score an Amazon Gift Card (Or something else... that just tends to be my "Redemption" of choice). The rest of this post is information directly from Swagbucks. 

1. The World of Millions Swag Code Extravaganza 
(Wednesday, September 30 only)

6 Swag Codes 
(Enter these into the swag code box at the top of your screen throughout the day) 

7 am PST/ 10 am EST - Answers 
9 am PST/ 12 pm EST - nCrave  
11 am PST/ 2 pm EST - Watch 
1 pm PST/ 4 pm EST - Shop 
3 pm PST/ 6 pm EST - Search 
5 pm PST/ 8 pm EST - Instagram 

2. Earn 100 SB Get 100 SB - For the 30th only, you can earn up to 400 bonus SB combined through the following activities

  • Discover = Earn 100 SB get a 100 SB Swag Up
  • nCrave = Earn 125 SB get a 100 SB Swag Up
  • Answer (Surveys Only) = Earn 150 SB get a 100 Swag Up
  • Watch Mobile = Earn 200 SB get a 100 Swag Up
Not a Swagbucks member yet? With back-to-school shopping completed and the holidays quickly approaching, a lot of you are probably thinking about your gift shopping list. Swagbucks is a fun rewards program that gives consumers free gift cards and cash and helps families pay for the holidays simply by doing what they are already doing online like shopping, searching the web, watching videos and sharing their opinions. Here’s a video showing how fun and easy it can be…

There is no limit to how many points Swagbucks members can earn and they never expire. Points can be redeemed for cash via PayPal or for gift cards for hundreds of retailers like Amazon, Walmart, Target, Best Buy, Toys R Us, and more. Sign up today and if you earn 300 points, called SB today (that's equivalent to a $3 Amazon Gift Card), you’ll get an additional 300 SB bonus on top of everything else! It’s simple, it’s free and it works. Click here to join today!

I  continue to search, and sometimes take part in some of the other swagbucks earning opportunities to earn Amazon Gift Cards, which helps stretch our cash for Christmas, Birthdays, Camping... really whatever we need to get. If you haven't signed up with Swagbucks yet, I'd love if you would use my referral link (Any highlighted links above) when you do~ because then we *both* win. ;)


Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Fascinating Education ~ Fascinating Physics Review

Even with a little help
from his little brother
he's good! 
Juggling at the beach
There really are three
balls in the air... 
Middlest child is a nuts and bolts kind of guy, who happens to have a bit of a natural inclination towards physics from a coordination point of view... he understands how to juggle... and he makes some amazing pool shots... and those all tie in to physics to some degree. He utilizes the laws governing movement and energy, often without even realizing it. Because of this, he was most interested in checking Fascinating Physics when given the option to choose between Fascinating Education's Biology, Chemistry, and Physics programs to review.

Now... he is on the younger end of the spectrum~ just turning 15 and if he were in the local school district he'd probably be an incoming freshman, so Physics is a bit of a s-t-r-e-t-c-h for him, but he was up for the challenge.

Fascinating Physics is an online science course, accessed via browser. The class is taught by the founder, Dr. Sheldon Margulies. As you can see by the graphic below, the course consists of a lesson (Power-point style, with Dr. Margulies lecturing/explaining through each slide), a script of the lecture, (for those who absorb knowledge best via reading,  easily accessed via the blue button below the lesson icon), and when your student has a handle on the material, a test, which can be taken either online or via a printed version from the provided pdf file, for those who prefer to have hardcopy on hand for their portfolios.

If you click on the graphic below, you can visit the Fascinating Education Sample page, to "test-drive" a lesson, view a script and see what a test looks like. This page also includes the course outline.
A note about the physics tests~ each question page has a "need help?" button, which will open up and reinforce the material learned before returning the student to the test. This can be very helpful when there are a myriad formulas that are difficult to recall when working through some of this material. 

A note about the tests in general~ there are no results stored on the website, so if you want a record of your students work, you will want to print the results right away, or print as pdf and store them on your computer. 

I should also mention that this is a secular science resource, so there will be mention of theories like "The Big Bang" and "Billions of years." However, I didn't find those comments to be a problem in the efficacy of the course in teaching the laws of physics.

So... how did we like Fascinating Physics, and how did it work for us? 
As mentioned above, the material might be a little bit advanced for my son at this age, so we took it a little slower than a student might who is 2-3 years older, with a stronger background in Algebra and Geometry. Middlest watched the complete first lesson in a few chunks of time the first full week we had the program. Then we watched it together, again bit by bit, because he was having trouble comprehending some parts (ummm.. yeah, me too! Physics is tricky stuff!). However, Dr. Margulies does present the material in a very understandable, straightforward manner, once the math concepts are conquered.

I reminded Middlest that he could pause the lesson, and look at the script that pertained to each slide, taking his time to really absorb what was being said, or the problem that was being worked. Finally, he went through the whole lesson one more time before taking the test.

Unfortunately, he didn't realize that the test results needed to be printed (I forgot to mention that quirk to him), so he moved on to another subject before I was able to see his results. I think I might move to the pdf version for future tests, just to be on the safe side! :) Or I can use this as a lesson in responsibility~ print/save/email the results, lest you be required to take the test again~ hardcopy! :D

The course consists of 15 lessons, which offers the equivalent of 1 year high school physics credit. I expect most lessons could be completed fairly easily over two weeks by a student with advanced math skills, and even by less proficient students, once they are confident in taking full advantage of accessing the material in the multiple ways in which it is presented.

Not So Nutty Nitty Gritty 
Please click the banner below to visit the TOS Review Crew and see what others had to say. As always, I hope that this review was useful to you as you choose where best to spend your homeschool budget.

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Saturday, September 19, 2015

T is for Thanks ~ (Charlotte Mason Inspiration #26)

T is for Thanks...

The quote continues... "simple in that we are really thinking of the kindness of the other person and not of ourselves; and sincere, in that we do not say a word more than we feel, or make believe to value a gift for its own sake when it is really not of value to us."

After a long hiatus, I shall attempt to finish my Charlotte Mason Inspiration A-Z picture/quotes. Please let me know if you enjoy(ed) this series. :)


Saturday, September 12, 2015

Nuggets of Gold (Missionary Story, Revolutionary Time Travel and a new song)

We've been busy with our last week of vacation before school starts, and time has really gone flying by! After camping last week we spent this week regrouping and relaxing for much of the time.

We unveiled our tie-Dye shirts from camping~ spent an afternoon at the beach, Eldest and I put in a long day at a Feis and then on to square dancing with "the cousins," while the boys and the dog were busy with a baseball game in the morning, the fall flea market down the street, and enjoying parts of our town's 375th birthday celebration (no photos from the boys' time... :(  )

Now it's time to get ready for our first day/week of school! :)

Here are a few nuggets to start you off:

By Canoe and Dog Train: The Adventures of Sharing the Gospel with Canadian Indians (Updated Edition. Includes Original Illustrations.) I haven't read this yet, but it looks like an interesting read for an older elementary age.

Timekeepers: A Revolutionary Tale is another that I plan to check out shortly~ a time travel story for the younger set.

And last but not least,  a bit of new music
that you can download from HearItFirst.
A new-to-me artist, Becca Bradley and her song The Lions Eyes. This is currently free for download if you submit your email address~

One more~ not a freebie, but a fun resource that you might be able to check out from the library or purchase used ~ I Hear America Singing!: Folksongs for American Families is a nostalgic CD/Book combo for my family~ it was a major part of the soundtrack to our 2006 Great American Road Trip. Eldest was reminded of it when looking up some of the tunes played at the square-dance. :)

Enjoy these nuggets! I'm going to go get some last-minute planning in for our first day of school, 2015/2016.


Saturday, September 5, 2015

Early September Golden Nuggets

I hope that your September has started off well!

Ours began with a week of camping,  beautiful weather, fishing (Middlest) and fun with family and friends.

Reminder: $5.99 Great Homeschool T-shirt Sale ~ ends on the 10th! They are also offering 20% off of most of their totes (Listed at $5.99) and "specialty" t-shirts... Go, check it out! :D
Our purchases from the 2010 sale

New Release Today has a free download from Cindy Morgan.

Amazon has a fun remake: Free Story "Little Bad Wolf and Red Riding Hood" from Newfangled Fairy Tales for Kindle~ I always like to check out variations on classic tales, and this one is cute. ;)

That's all for the moment~ enjoy!!! 



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