Wednesday, December 3, 2014

The NEW 50 States and Capitals Song...BY REGION

Hey Guys!

Phillip and I have been working on this song for about a month, and I am pleased to say it is READY!!!

We have a 3rd/4th grader in our home, so quite naturally she started learning the 50 states along with their capitals this year. I decided to take them 10 states at a time and completing the majority of the task in about 5 weeks. It's just easier to take larger learning tasks like this in smaller chunks. It helps to get the mind around the task and allows the student the time and space needed to process the big picture of the task.

Funny how taking something in SMALLER chunks helps with getting the BIGGER picture!

After looking around on youtube we noticed that every song we listened to started with Montgomery, Alabama, and moved all the way across the nation to Juneau, Alaska then zigzagged all over the nation until the song was done. All of the songs sounded great, but for ease of learning, and for mentally getting a hold of what you're learning, these songs were ineffective (for those reasons specifically) our opinion.

Therefore we decided to tackle the job from a different perspective. BY REGION! We started at the very top and moved in a methodical manner until we'd covered all of the states and their captials...and that is exactly what we did!

It took us close to a month to complete, and it is our hope that every home schooling family and educators in general of 3rd graders and even highschoolers will listen, like, benefit, enjoy, and share our version of the 50 States and Capitals song!

Thank you for listening!

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Check out our New Video for The Three States of Matter Song!

Hey Guys!

Just like the title says...check out our NEW video for the Three States of Matter Song! If you like it, or more importantly, your kids like it, please subscribe to our youtube channel, leave us a comment, and wait for more great, SILLY, fun, and free educational music from Silly School Songs (which just happens to be my husband and me). :)


Tuesday, November 11, 2014

The Next Level for Silly School Songs

Hi Everyone!

I remember when we first wrote and produced the first three Silly School Songs, you guys were very supportive in listening and giving your feedback. My husband and I are so thankful for that.

We are finally ready to give this project the attention that it deserves. Phillip produces all of the music, and we write them and sing them (sometimes with the kids) ourselves.

You can find them for free on youtube. We have uploaded the first three songs with some preliminary videos (bare with us), but our hope and desire is that these songs bless and enrich home schools all over.

We are currently working on the BEST 50 States song EVER! We are about halfway through with it.

We endeavor to make songs that are sing-a-long quality because we believe that musical repetition is an effective way for children to retain useful information. Although there are many educational songs that have been written throughout history, the best ones are those that are catchy, easy to learn, and that had us learning before we even realized it. That is our goal with Silly School Songs. Please subscribe to our youtube channel and tell us what your think about the songs, and hang around as we load more.

Most of our songs will be for k-5 grade level children, but we will create some songs for older grade levels as well.

The Three States of Matter Song:

Thursday, October 30, 2014

The Major Milestones Kids!!!!

Hey guys!!!

They are finally here...sort of!!! Three of the five books that I've been working on since 2007 are published and on! I am so excited about this! They are ready for purchase! If you are a new mom, or a new mom AGAIN, or know a soon-to-be momma The Major Milestones book series is the perfect gift as it is a series of books designed to teach and entertain children from 6 months old to about 2 years old on all of the MAJOR MILESTONES that he or she will attempt and accomplish during the first two years of their life!

Sarah, Cameron, Skylar, William and Portia are 5 of the most AMBITIOUS kids around, so introduce them to your little one TODAY!

Sarah is eager to leave nursing and the bottle behind for embracing her sippy cup! See how she navigates this new and exciting venture!

Cameron is so adorable and investigative as he gets down on all fours and pushes forward in more ways than one!!!

Skylar won't be held back from grabbing her spoon and feeding herself for the first time. She absolutely reminds me of my Madison when she was just 4 months old!!!!

Coming very soon are William Walker (you can imagine what he will be getting into) and Portia Potties (yep! it gets messy)!!!!

This has been a labor of love for me and my husband who has supported the idea since its conception back in 2007 when our oldest was just 6 months old. She was the inspiration for the series as she sat in the floor with her little pink onsie pj's on reaching for her sippy cup!! Time flies!!! 

Thank you in advance for your support of this project, please leave feedback on Amazon about the book(s) and be on the look out for our website, the final two books in the series, and our hard copies coming out soon!!!

Thanks so much,
Mommy the Teacher,

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Moving Beyond the Page - More than Just a Curriculum

I certainly have one of those "square peg" children. She is such a thinker, and I don't mean that in the oooh-look-at-my-child-she's-so-smart kind of way, although she is bright. I mean that when Madison was on the playground and another five year old said, "you're not my friend anymore," Madison believed her.

I'm talking about when I took her to story time at our library and all of the children were told to get an instrument out of the box, she was last because she watched everyone else go first. And when it was time to play the instruments, she stood there holding hers in her hand because she was listening and enjoying all of the different sounds around her with a smile on her face.

I'm saying that she's 8, and plays classical piano on a Middle School level effortlessly - it takes her anywhere from 2 days to one week to learn a new song, and she has composed several songs and wants to record them to cd.

And lastly, I'm describing a child that when she was told to do a simple task, she actually took time to think about what you were telling her to do before she did it. She observed her surroundings. I don't know why except that she was a different sort of learner.

In fact, her kindergarten teacher asked me one day at a parent/teacher conference if I'd noticed that Madison takes time to think when given an instruction. My response was, "yes, she's a thinker and I think she's thinking about what you've asked her to do." Besides being mildly irritating for the impatient parent that I was, I didn't find anything wrong with this. Her teacher on the other hand was ready to label her, saying to me that "maybe there is something wrong with how she processes information." Although I was impressed with her seemingly unique ability to give an amateur medical diagnosis, right there in the kindergarten pod of a 30 year old school while sitting at a tiny table in a tiny multi-colored chair, of a child who she'd known for about 5 months and interacted with for a few hours a day in a classroom with 20 other children; I was not willing to accept that label for my 5 year old, or to fight with the system for the next 12 years while she attended school.

What am I getting at? What I'm saying is my child is very bright, but she did not fit into the traditional classroom environment. She was too much of an abstract learner. "Abstract perceivers take in information through analysis, observation, and thinking." (Gordon Lawrence, 2011)

Moving Beyond the Page is proving to be that curriculum for that type of child. Madison's kindergarten teacher also told me that she was a linguistic child, and that she couldn't be good in both Math and Reading. Well, she was only "good" at reading because I'd taken the time to teach her how at an early age, not because it was her innate strength. Well after homeschooling for 3 years, that child who learned how to read at 4 years old and scored above average in all linguistic categories, will tell you that her favorite subject is Math.

The deal here parents is that if you have taken educating your child into your own hands out of frustration, passion, or just plain old conviction it's probably the best decision you will ever make in terms of your child being able to actually grow and thrive in a way that suits him.

Moving Beyond the Page is a curriculum for that square peg child who just simply does not fit into that round peg classroom. I was fortunate enough to have one of these children and I had to do something about it. Rather than force her to fit, I took her out and began our homeschooling journey. And we are excited about the "square peg-ness" of the Moving Beyond the Page curriculum!

Abstract perceivers, however, take in information through analysis, observation, and thinking. - See more at:
Abstract perceivers, however, take in information through analysis, observation, and thinking. - See more at:
Abstract perceivers, however, take in information through analysis, observation, and thinking. - See more at:

Monday, August 18, 2014

What a day...

I know lots of moms out there use home school planners and such to keep everything organized in their heads, and their home school. I completely see the benefit of that especially if you are home schooling a large family. However, can I just share how wonderful it is to have a God-directed home school. Now just because one feels the prompting of God or the Holy Spirit while teaching their children certainly does not mean that there is no room for a planner in your day.

Maybe this post is more about state standards than planners, but at the beginning of this year, there was a prompting in my thoughts about what my 6 year old needed to cover. Sure, because I'm her teacher and mother, I'm instinctively aware of her strengths and weaknesses. However, I was prompted to focus on spelling.

What does all of this amount to? PROGRESS! It just feels good when you pay attention to your spirit while home schooling.

I know some moms who are so stressed out with keeping up with state standards and believe me, I am a standards-driven mom. I believe that it is my responsibility to make sure the girls know what they should know for their age-range. We as home schooling moms though, should not ever forget to allow room for our intuition or God's guidance (whichever term you feel most comfortable with) when it comes to the kids.

Today, I am over the moon at the progress that both of my girls have made. Chelsea made a 100 on her spelling test. This is a big deal because last week, she struggled hard to get them down, but we kept at it, and here we are. She's also become a master at skip counting her odd and even numbers. She said them today from 1 to 100. She's got her 5s and 10s down from last year, and she's a pro at adding 10 and counting by tens starting with any number.
Chelsea's choice for read-aloud today.

Madison finished her first research paper, and it was good! She researched and wrote about zebras. This was not some little 8 year old barely-three-paragraphs kind of research paper. This child has got to be writing on nearly a 5th grade level, using commas, semi-colons, hyphens, correct sentence structure, and content all so very effectively.
Madison's research paper...

Listen up home school moms out there, let's not take our accolades too soon, some of us have a long way to go, but let us stop, take a breath, and enjoy all of the little and big successes on this journey. We have been called to a most wonderful - some would say, the highest calling in the land - don't waste it by  focusing on your shortcomings and imperfections. Don't spend your year worrying over state standards. Take a breath and realize that you have more tools at your disposal than planners, schedules, and "how to home school" manuals.

You have your God-granted special gifts to raise and teach your children everything that they need to know in order to fulfill God's will for their lives.

Granted, it's no small task, but it has been given to you by the Creator of  the world and you CAN do it! You can enjoy it! You can succeed!

Don't throw out your planners. Don't negate state standards altogether. Listen to your heart. Heed your inclinations. Take a moment to just sit and watch your child and to think about him. Don't worry about what they do well, or don't do well. Just think about your child, and then listen to you heart. Sometimes this process can get you farther down the road than any manual, schedule or planner could.

Happy Home Schooling Moms!

Oh and don't forget to check out Moving Beyond the Page curriculum for gifted children!

Monday, August 4, 2014

Some Summer Fun

We had a pretty great summer. The girls spent a week with my husband's side of the family up in North Carolina. That was a first for all of us, but it was fun, and they learned a lot! They did some quilting with Mammaw, and according to her they did every single stitch of their own quilt. I love that we are still able to reach back to the generation before us to glean skills that just should never die out no matter the level of technology and efficiency we reach in our world today. Thanks Mammaw! ;).

They also went fishing with PawPaw, and I'm told that Madison baited her hook. That's my brave girl. I did the same as a little girl. "We don't need nobody to bait our hooks!" LOL

Here at the home front, we did some of the summer activities that the Chicago Science Museum put out for free. We only got to two of them, but they were CRAZY fun to do. We built our own ski ball jump. We also built a newspaper tent. The tent didn't go as well, but it was fun to do as family.

We got quite a good bit of swimming in this summer. We went to Six Flags with some friends and I decided that the girls could not go back until they are a little older. They wanted to ride the bigger rides, and that's great, but I could not relax with my 6 year old on the Mind Bender and other rides, so I figured we just wouldn't go back for a couple of summers.

That's our summer recap!

What was your summer like?


Thursday, July 31, 2014

Moving Beyond the Page - This Year's Curriculum Choice!

This year's curriculum choice is really an old choice for me, but it is only this year that I am able to get it for a couple of reasons. The major reason was probably because I was a new home schooling mom, and like most mommies...was very unsure of just how to home school. Well with 2 1/2 school terms under my belt, an attempt at an academic co-op, one full kind-of-box-curriculum, one school year of an eclectic style curriculum choice, I am elated to finally be starting our school year with hopes of continuing throughout the girls' education using Moving Beyond the Page.

This is a complete curriculum for  homeschooling the gifted kid, or any kid using the gifted approach. 

Quick back story: My youngest brother was tested and taught in the gifted class of the public school system from 2nd grade through his high school graduation. He also graduated with honors. It was a worthy curriculum used only once a week for only a select few students. Once I became a parent, and gained a vested interest in education, I often thought that it would benefit every student to have access to the gifted program of the public school system. That may be impossible due to funding primarily, which I understand, but it doesn't change the fact.

At any rate, that little story may give you some insight into why I was sooooo thoroughly excited about happening upon the MBTP curriculum a couple of years ago.  It is based on research, meets state standards, and is written by certified teachers, a certified gifted teacher, an education specialist...all who are homeschooling moms. Folks it doesn't get any better than that!

Anyway, what's your curriculum choice this year?

Oh a really great thing about Moving Beyond the Page is that it can be used as a complete curriculum, or as a supplement!

Happy Home Schooling y'all!

ps. I'm glad to be back...or sorta

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

I Have Truly Missed Blogging...


I can not begin to tell you all just how much I have missed blogging about life while home schooling. I am still plugging away at my degree in Elementary Education Interdisciplinary Studies at Liberty University. Why am I in school? Well, as a home schooling mommy, I know that I didn't have to go back to school to do the job; however, because I never finished school the first time around, I felt under-equipped for the job.  I hate saying that because I do feel a natural ability, and a love for teaching. Still though, I felt like I needed the confidence of having a degree in order to do the job to the level that I believe it needs to be done. Anyway, moving right along...

My girls are growing in so many ways. Right now they are preparing for a week long adventure at Paw-Paw's and Mam-Maw's house. This will be their first week long trip away from home, and boy are they excited!

We have done so much since my last post this time last year. The most exciting would be our work at a local senior home and orphanage. The girls put on a concert of music and dance once a month for the senior citizens of the home, and we drop off food for the children of the orphanage. Wow this sounds so pious or pretentious as I type it, but it is not my intention. I just thought that it would be a good idea to teach them how to use their gifts to bless others. I mean, why else are we learning this stuff if it's not to bless others?

1st concert at Senior Center

2nd concert at Senior Center
I'm very proud of Chelsea! There may be very little more exciting for a home schooling mom or dad than starting off with your pre-k or kindergartener, and witnessing how much they learn over the course of a year. Yes, it's just as easy to be proud of your older kids, but it's something about watching the growth of a child after their first full year of phonics or whatever type of reading program used, or after their first full year of math lessons. Seeing Chelsea at 6 years old be able to do a math problem like "8+5=10+____" without using her fingers, just makes my heart sing.

We are keeping our brains in a state of activity by doing a Singapore Math mental math worksheet everyday. We left off the school year with Madison learning to write a research paper, so hopefully we can work on that over the summer as well, but as of now, we've only been able to accomplish a math worksheet each day.

They've had fun with VBS and a music camp so far this summer, and plenty of swimming!

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