Sunday, September 30, 2012

TOS CREW REVIEW ~ Music Together

I have taught a Mommy and Me Music program for the last 4 years... I first started teaching it out of the house....and then Moved the classes to a nearby Dance Studio... When I was given the opportunity to review Music Together Family Favorites I was ecstatic because I have been interested in learning more about it for awhile (but never got around to it...due to lack of free time)!!! 

Music Together is an internationally recognized early childhood music and movement program for children from birth through age 7—and the grownups who love them. First offered to the public in 1987, it pioneered the concept of a research-based, developmentally appropriate early childhood music curriculum that strongly emphasizes and facilitates adult involvement.
Music Together classes are based on the recognition that all children are musical. All children can learn to sing in tune, keep a beat, and participate with confidence in the music of our culture, provided that their early environment supports such learning.

After researching Music Together in connection with my TOS Crew review, I have found that it incorporates the same philosophies that my program does. 

Basic Principles of the Music Together Philosophy
I. All children are musical.
II. Therefore, all children can achieve basic music competence, which we have defined as the ability to sing in tune and move with accurate rhythm.
III.The participation and modeling of parents and caregivers, regardless of their musical ability, is essential to a child's musical growth.
IV. This growth is best achieved in a playful, developmentally appropriate, non-performance-oriented learning environment that is musically rich yet immediately accessible to the child's-and the adult's!-participation.

The Teacher book that I was given goes through how to use the songs, which instruments you can use, and the philosophy behind it. It was a great pairing to the CD and very informative. The CD I was given has 19 of the Music Together family favorites on it..... from the Hello Song that they start each class with to the Goodbye (wind down) song.  One of my favorite songs on the CD is Stick Tune... we frequently play with Rhythm Sticks and this was a fun new way to use them. The kids really enjoyed it!
We happen to have all the instruments for this program already (and then some :-))... however, if you don't have a lot of instruments around your house, you can obtain them inexpensively...or MAKE THEM!! :-) The fun is not in what brand of instrument...but the music itself. 

We mainly used the CD during free dance around with and enjoy... the songs are very catchy...and before long your kids will know all the lyrics...(as will you!) Overall, this is a great program... whether you are homeschooling... or public/private schooling!

The Music Together Family Favorites Songbook for Teachers is$29.95 or you can purchase the combo with the CD for $39.95. ($5 savings!) Music Together is also offering an additional $2 off with the coupon code “Schoolhouse” at the check out.

  • NAPPA Gold Award winner
  • A Parents’ Choice Silver Honor Award winner
  • Association of Educational Publishers (AEP) 2010 Distinguished Achievement Award Winner

See what the rest of the TOS Crew is saying about Music Together...

Disclaimer:  As a member of the TOS Crew, I received this product, at no cost to me, in exchange for my honest review.  All opinions are mine.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

TOS CREW REVIEW ~ Family Time Fitness


Between Dance, Swimming, Gymnastics and Soccer my kids are physically active (scheduled....lets face it...mine run around the house all day long) 6 days a week. I try and do a Zumba class 3-4 times a week.... overall our house is very physically active. I was thrilled to get Family Time Fitness (its for the whole family!!) to review. We were sent Fitness 4 Homeschool Core 1... through computer download. I downloaded the lessons and put them in a binder. 

The Fitness 4 Homeschool Curriculum allows homeschool parents to teachphysical education without previous knowledge of physical education and athletic development. Our program, designed by experts in fitness training, nutrition and body movement, is designed to suit every age and ability level while affordably fitting into your budget. Our program combines flexibility and fun with a comprehensive curriculum to give your children a foundation for strong bodies and minds. Best of all, you get all this for only $57 dollars for all your children!

The 260 lesson plans utilize repetition, but they are also progressive and sequential. The program is designed for all age levels and abilities, and because we believe that the learning process is most valuable with family engagement, the lessons are designed so that the whole family can join in the lessons.

A great part of this program is that there are not a lot of supplies needed... we actually had them all already anyway... hula hoops, cones, balls, jump ropes, etc.

I loved pretty much everything about this program. So much information was included! We received in depth lessons.... that are very easy to follow...but should you have questions, they also have video clips of the activities. They also have a one page summary- which is great to go back to refer to.  They also provide assessment tools and nutritional guides. 

If you do the entire lesson...its about 60 minutes of activity.... Because my kids are involved in a scheduled physical activity that ranges from 1-3 hours a day....I didn't feel that it was necessary for us to do the whole lesson.... not to fear!! The lessons are easily broken down into 15 minute intervals... which was (and is) perfect for us at the start of our school day. 

I plan to continue to use this awesome program, even now that the review is over. It is really so easy to use and a fun way to start the day! 

The Fitness 4 Homeschool Curriculum is $57.  There is also a FREE two day trial you can sign up for. Go check it out!

Click the banner below to see what other Crew members thought of this site. 


Disclaimer:  As a member of the TOS Crew, I received this product, at no cost to me, in exchange for my honest review.  All opinions are mine.

Thursday, September 13, 2012


Speekee Logo

Ryleigh (age 5) has been studying Spanish for the last year or so (at a slow pace)...and during this time Braeden (age 3) has started to pick up some of the Spanish words and Phrasing... so I was very interested to see how he would do with a program that I used geared toward his age.... he Loved it!!!

Speekee TV is fun and and the songs repetitive... there are 10 episodes that take your child to a different location (Park, Cafe, etc.). Included with the subscription (which is great for homeschoolers!!!) is the Speekee Fast Track Program... which provides daily activities to help you get the most out of your children's Spanish Education.  

From the Website:

What is Speekee FastTrack?

Speekee FastTrack is a 40 week plan that maximises every child's Spanish learning. Every week we've suggested 4 activities for you, with corresponding video clips, worksheets and other downloads. Taking just a few minutes, each activity accelerates understanding and use of Spanish.
* Please note that the Speekee Program is Spanish from Spain...not Latin America... ( I am using Latin America Spanish with there are some minor differences)...

8 reasons to choose SpeekeeTV for Spanish

Spanish for kids aged 2-10

  • Spanish acquisition without effort. Just watch and play!
  • HD video streaming of Speekee and friends teaching...
  • ...concise, essential Spanish, with lots of repetition
  • 100% in Spanish (subtitles available)
  • Virtual friendships with real Spanish children...
  • real Spanish locations...
  • real time!
  • Spanish songs that really ‘stick’

Pricing for their online program: Speekee offers the first two weeks free and the monthly fee is $7.50. A year subscription is $60.00. You can cancel your membership at any time. You may view pricing information here.

Disclaimer: As a member of the Schoolhouse Review Crew, I received a subscription to this program for free. No compensation was made. The thoughts/opinions expressed in this post are my own.