Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Mathematics books | Math questions and answers | Free

Mathematics books | Math questions and answers | Free:

Want to gain a better understanding of mathematics with free textbooks? Our free math books provide answers to questions, for example, about mathematical models and concepts, limit value or engineering mathematics.

I counted 36 math courses ranging from Algebra to several more advanced math classes.
Books are downloadable as a PDF file.

Also, if you skim down the side bar, there are many other subjects in the science, health, law, accounting, and many other areas that also offer free books.

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Nine Free College Level Writing & Literature Classes at Coursera - GalleyCat

Nine Free College Level Writing Literature Classes at Coursera - GalleyCat:

Copied from the website:   click on the link above to find the links to the courses listed below:

Over at the online learning site Coursera, you can take college-level writing and literature courses for free, studying alongside thousands of other students.
Below, we’ve linked to nine literary Coursera offerings, classes ranging from science fiction to writing to mythology. Here’s more about the site:
We are a social entrepreneurship company that partners with the top universities in the world to offer courses online for anyone to take, for free. We envision a future where the top universities are educating not only thousands of students, but millions … Classes offered on Coursera are designed to help you master the material. When you take one of our classes, you will watch lectures taught by world-class professors, learn at your own pace, test your knowledge, and reinforce concepts through interactive exercises. When you join one of our classes, you’ll also join a global community of thousands of students learning alongside you.
Nine Free Literary Classes at Coursera 
1. Fantasy and Science Fiction: The Human Mind, Our Modern World at the University of Michigan
2. The Modern and the Postmodern at Wesleyan University
3. English Composition I: Achieving Expertise at Duke University
4. The Ancient Greeks at Wesleyan University
5. Writing II: Rhetorical Composing at Ohio State University
6. The Fiction of Relationship at Brown University
7. Online Games: Literature, New Media, and Narrative at Vanderbilt University
8. Modern & Contemporary American Poetry at University of Pennsylvania
9. Greek and Roman Mythology at the University of Pennsylvania

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Saturday, January 26, 2013

Magic School Bus - Complete Series on DVD - On Sale Now

Amazon.com: Magic School Bus: The Complete Series: Lily Tomlin, Daniel DeSanto, Erica Luttrell, Maia Filar, Tara Meyer, Larry Jacobs, Charles E. Bastien: Movies & TV:


This normally runs for $79.99.   Sometimes it drops down to $59.99.

But right now ... it is 52% off at an unbelievably low $37.99.

Scholar received this for Christmas this year, and has loved it.

Not all of the episodes played on one of the DVD players ... but they ALL PLAY on his computer, which was a bonus for us, because his computer is in the school room!

Special Features

  • Parent's Guide Includes: A List of All Episodes and Topics, Tips for Viewing, Ideas for Family Science Fun, and more!
  • Kid's Guide Includes: Experiments, Activities, Facts and Notes, and more!
  • Languages: English and Spanish

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
88 of 90 people found the following review helpful
For four fact filled seasons from 1994 to 1998, "The Magic School Bus" paved the way for kids to believe that science was cool. As the television landscape continues to devolve, it's refreshing to see the Bus resurface in this Complete Series collection. Charming and educational, this animated delight is comprised of 52 thirty minute episodes. Ms. Frizzle (voiced by the distinctive and invaluable Lily Tomlin) takes her class of enthusiastic students on trips filled with fantasy and wonder. Astronomy, biology, geology, physics, chemistry, paleontology, and just about every other "ology" gets a visit or two through the course of the various field trips. However, if you're shopping "The Magic School Bus: The Complete Series," you probably want to know what is included with your investment.

Packaging: The box set looks great. The cover is done in a 3-D lenticular design that already ups the cool quotient. Each of the eight DVDs is enclosed in its own case within the set with complete episode information for easy access. Each individual season has thirteen episodes over two of the DVDs.

Content: 52 episodes at approximately 22 hours of complete running time. Recommended ages 4-10. English or Spanish language options.

Bonus Material: A 24 page kids activity guide is a nice addition (though not the most sophisticated presentation I've ever seen). More valuable is the Parents' Guide. This tool helps you orchestrate lessons with your kids and makes this an invaluable teaching tool. I, personally, love that "The Magic School Bus" advocates parent involvement as opposed to being just another TV show to plant your kids in front of (although that's certainly an option too).

Easily recommended, but perhaps cost prohibitive, there are smaller packaging choices available if you're on a budget. The ones I'm listing are new sets to DVDs (although episodes will overlap if you have previously released compilations). That is a potential pitfall to this buying strategy. If you want to collect "The Magic Bus," there are past DVD releases and new DVD releases and, if you're not diligent, it would be very easy to purchase some of the same episodes under different titles. The Complete Series choice will eliminate this possible duplication and offers every epsiode (some never before on DVD).

These two lower price compilation have an assortment of 12 episodes each:
(1) Blast Off! From Sea To Space
(2) Field Trip Fun and Games

Or even smaller, these four sets have about 90 minutes of content that bring episodes relating to a specific topic together:
(1) The Human Body
(2) Super Star Power
(3) Takes a Dive (coral reefs, tidal zones, etc)
(4) Takes Flight (weather, flying, etc.)

I love and respect "The Magic School Bus." Educational TV can be interactive and entertaining! KGHarris, 8/12.

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Friday, January 25, 2013

10 impossible loads made possible via African transport | Safari Interactive Magazine Blog.

10 impossible loads made possible via African transport | Safari Interactive Magazine Blog.:

It is so amazing to me the amazing solutions that people can come up with ,.. when not shackled by endless rules and regulations.   It's not just Africa, I've seen this level of thinking outside of the box in Ecuador as well when I visited for 7 weeks, and I've seen similar pictures from all over Central and South America and Asia.  Anywhere where the poor are allowed to solve their own problems without the rich inflicting themselves and their standards of "that can't be done" on the poor.

Sometimes rules are good ... and other times, rules only serve to keep others from solving their own problems.   Rules can be beneficial ... "Do not steal."  or rediculous "Do not walk your penguin after dark."  to constrictive  "You must have a certain door purchased to replace your damaged one or you will pay a fine."

Just how many "rules and regulations" do you think these people would be breaking if they lived in the USA?

I for one, have to applaud their ingenuity and determination.   Something that has be "ruled and regulated" out of most of America.

God created people to be the most amazing resource on this planet.

This is one reason that I love homeschooling.   I don't teach "inside the box" and I allow my kids the freedom to act outside of the box.  

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Crafts: Snow and Ice

I have been planning a craft post for several weeks, and finally realized, that if I don't get one out soon, January will have flown past!  Yikes.

So without farther ado .... here are a collection of snow and ice and such crafts and experiments for any aged child to enjoy.

Snowman Sensory Puzzle by Teach Preschool

snowman books for kids

Puffy Paint Snowman by Teach Preschool


winter crafts  for kids

Snowman in a Bag by Teach Preschool

letter snowman craft for kids

Holiday Crafts with Kids: Frosted Windows

Tortilla Snowflakes





arctic ice sensory play


votive candleweb


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Monday, January 21, 2013

Don't you LOVE getting great stuff for FREE!

This was first published in August of 2008.


Several locations for finding Free items for school and productivity.

I have downloaded quite a bit from these Giveaway sites.

Ya'll may really enjoy them.

1.  Give Away of the Day  (and a sister site - Game Give Away of the Day ... but only on weekends)

The catch is that it has to be completely downloaded and installed per the instructions (some are trickier than others) by midnight on the Pacific Coast.

And you can only use it for your personal benefit - not commercial.

I've been downloading from this website for over 6 years, without any problems.


And if you like that "Free" part...

Here is a blog that gives away books PDF - homeschool friendly books every day


And free all the time are the MP3 books - human read - at


not everything is worth listening to...but lots of the great old books are there. The run on volunteers, and have hundreds more books on their list waiting to be read. My girls love listening to these on their MP3 players while doing chores.


Also, we download sermons from http://www.oneplace.com/downloads/ - several of which have rss (or podcasts) available for download on a daily or weekly basis.

The girls love being able to listen to different things without bothering anybody and they can do outside chores too. I've also ripped their AWANA Ultimate Adventure CD's for the books that they are working on an put the verses they want on their MP3 players. Kendra loves to listen while she knits.

You don't have to have an MP3 player though - I've burned several of their favorite books and stories to CDs and I listen on my computer when I can. Most people have Media Player on their computers - I recently upgraded and LOVE the new version!

***  We eventually recorded far more sermons than we had time to listen to ... and I stopped recording.  BUT you can still get free sermons and such through them, though the format has changed a LOT since I used it last!


Books for your ereaders?  

Try Gutenberg!    They have several formats, including Kindle and PDF and several others.


Saturday, January 19, 2013

Organizing the Hallway

Blast from the Past

January 2009

This is one fix that remains "working" for us to this day.
Except for ONE small problem,
with our school room next door,
we are adding chalk to the baskets faster than the kids are using it up.

Shortly after this was posted,
I discovered that I was pregnant with Sunshine.
Shortly after that,
my mom died,
the electricity in the hallway (and the Master bedroom area) shorted out,
so we no longer have light in the hallway,
and by the end of this year,
we had moved our school room next door to my Dad's downstairs area.

So much has happened to us since we did this 4 years ago.
I was just a little shocked at the dates,
because I still think of this as "recent" improvements!

We got some little baskets at the Dollar Tree.
 They are not quite what I had in mind ... but they work.

Story has become quite a "skilled" fix it girl.
Song wants you all to know that she let Story borrow HER hammer.

Finished - except for the chalk.

Basket 1 holds the expensive school chalk and erasers.
Basket 2 holds colored chalk.
Basket 3 holds sidewalk chalk for the youngest ones to play.

This is working out very well!
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Friday, January 18, 2013

Too Busy To Think

While I have a LOT of plans running around in my head, it seems as if less than half of it is getting completed or even approached!

I've been spending a great deal of time working on Story and Song's school goals.   When I started to print out the pages for the next 9 - 10 weeks, the ref objected to the amount of paper ....   so we ( I ) brainstormed and looked for alternative plans and discovered that the Well Planned Day - 4 Year High School planners were on sale at Mardel's at half price.  So the ref purchased 2 of them.

Since Story was suppose to graduate back in May of 2012 ... and was awash in half completed plans and piles of notebooks and sketch books (she aspires to be a famous author) ... we decided that the best way to get her back on track was to get everything that she has left to complete into her planner ... and as long as both Song and Story take the same classes for several subjects, it made sense to write the same stuff into Song's planner while we were at it.

I self plan several of my own subjects, most especially History, so this is somewhat time consuming.

But this has taken much of my time over the last 2 weeks - and I'm not finished yet!

I'm really not overly concerned about Story being a little behind ...

 first, she over studies most of her subjects.  Which means that she will go far beyond what I have assigned if it catches her interest and will not move on to a new subject until she had satisfied her curiosity ... so when we studied creation, my 9 week study plan turned into a 6 month saturation of every material that she could get her hands on ... until she had nothing left to study.  She moved along at a good pace then, until we reached the Egyptians, and then she was stuck again. .... So by the time she lets a subject go, she has a college level grasp of the subject.  ...  Also, this has allowed me to let her have full access to all of the answer keys ... because she won't put the problem away until she completely understands how a problem works and WHY she got it right or wrong.  Being the oldest, I test her by listening to her explain subjects to Song and Cat ... so I'm confident that she is mastering her subjects.

Second, life has been overwhelming over the past 4 or 5 years.  Starting with the ref loosing his job almost 5 years ago, and being called upon to help out at a higher level around the house as I was pregnant (and after 2 miscarriages), plus loosing a major cornerstone of our home - her grandmother (my mother) died, adding 2 siblings (one a temporary cousin), and so much more ... with less money, we spent hours trying to keep gardens going in a drought, and trying to keep grass trimmed without proper tools.   She got some really hard lessons in life and how it works.   But some of our school days have been only a few hours long for a day, and heavily interrupted.

Third, she has found a passion in her writing.  She studies every book and course on writing that she finds, reads classics by the basket full, and has spent hours learning the ins and outs of the publishing world and blogging world.   This has given her many hands on skills and she has begun helping others as well.

Fourth, she isn't ready to "grow up" yet.   Honestly, she loves being a big sister at home, and has no desire to rush off into the big world.  She loves her siblings, and mucking in the garden, and cooking almost every meal we eat.   While she is perfectly able to hold her own in the adult world, she enjoys the freedom of childhood and being able to pursue her dreams of writing.   I figure as long as she is helping so much around the house and able to cook, clean, and take care of her siblings, then she is learning life skills that will help her achieve when she chooses to step out in the "big world".

Fifth, she plans to do most of her college work here at home online or nearby colleges.

Sixth, if she were public schooled, her graduation date would be May 2013.  So she isn't as far behind as it first appears.


Song, on the other hand, is just starting 9th grade.  She is my independent go getter, but her dyslexia has slowed her down considerably.  When she reached 4th grade, she stalled out, unable to go on due to her reading difficulties, she has recently made HUGE strides forward between volunteer working for a local horse therapy organization that works with children with learning problems, and her passion for music and violin lessons.

I'm thinking these 4 year planners are going to be just what the girls need to get back on track and heading in the right directions.

Both girls have blogs that you can follow if you are interested.

http://oscarlettreviews.blogspot.com/  -  she shares this blog with my cousin and myself.


So.... THAT is where I have been the past couple of weeks.

Also, our school room is a bit drafty, and the winds have had a wind chill factor below freezing.  We can't seem to stay warm over here after dark.   And I do most of my blogging after I've put the kids down for the night.

PLUS ... I'm helping Story do a final edit of her newest book, "Do You Take This Quest", which she hopes to publish in a week or two or three .... or actually, she planned to publish months ago ... but life happens and gets in the way sometimes.

Please don't go away while I'm sorting life out around here ... and I'll be back as soon as possible.

If there are questions or areas that you would like to see more posts ... please leave a comment!

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Monday, January 14, 2013

Author: Beatrix Potter

Helen Beatrix Potter (28 July 1866 – 22 December 1943) was an English author, illustratornatural scientist and conservationist best known for her imaginative children’s books featuring animals such as those in The Tale of Peter Rabbit which celebrated the British landscape and country life.

3 Free Librivox Apps


all librivox audio books are FREE


and some apps to find Gutenberg books easier

The 23 Tales















Collections of Tales - 

Other books


    Beatrix Potter: A Biography   **  This book is occasionally offered for Free.

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