Saturday, July 30, 2016

Doodle Your Day - A Timberdoodle Review

 Have you heard about how important doodling can be for your kids?  Not only does doodling help kids stay focused - such as during read aloud time, but it also helps them retain facts and comprehend new concepts.  Timberdoodle sent us Doodle Your Day for a review and it has been lots of fun!

 I've noticed as my kids get older, they have a little trouble coming up with ideas on their own when it comes to creating, art, or doodling.  Doodle Your Day is a great way to get their brains thinking and drawing things they would never have thought to on their own.  This book combines journaling, art, and even the occasional thing to cut out and paste, or find around the house and include in the book - such as "find an old key and attach it here, then draw what you wish it could open".  So fun and creative!  There is a spot for every day of the year - so doodling can be a daily activity.  Boo has been having fun with it this summer, but I also plan to have it be part of her daily homeschool plans.  

 Bentley, the worlds cutest dog is looking forward to seeing himself sketched in the spot for National Pet Day. 
 Doodle Your Day has think high quality thick pages that will be able to handle markers, glue and whatever Boo decides to add in! 

 There are a few repeating pages such as, "What I ate for lunch today" and "Today I learned something new".  Boo quickly stated she hadn't learned anything yet today - and then remembered seeing and being full of wonder at a HUGE leaf colored moth on our front door this morning.  It was brown and yellow just like all the other dead leaves all around it. All the neighbor girls had run over to investigate it.  After the prompt our Doodle Your Day journal gave us - we decided to google it and find out more about it.  We discovered it was called an Imperial moth and is found in the eastern US.  Thanks to our journal, we had a learning opportunity and after Boo wrote about it and sketched it I think she will remember it much better than just seeing it with her friends. 

Doodle Your Day is going to be a fun addition to our daily activities and will most likely be something Boo will treasure forever - an illustrated personal keepsake of her entire fifth grade year!  You can purchase Doodle Your Day separately or as part of Timberdoodle's Sixth Grade Curriculum Kit. 

I was sent this product to review as a member of Timberdoodle's blog team.  All opinions are strictly my own. 

Friday, July 29, 2016

Summer Horseback Riding

 It's been such a fun summer having Punkin home - it's been years since she was home for the summer instead of working at horse camps.  She is doing a Marketing Internship instead so she has been teaching riding lessons in the evenings.  Boo has fallen in love with the horse world this year!  She has grown up around horses but never really had formal lessons until this summer with her big sister.  She is in LOVE.  It's been so nice for her and Punkin to share a common love - and Punkin is an EXCELLENT instructor!  She has been riding with another homeschool friend Esther which has been so nice! 

 Baby decided he's not a barn dog. Though he did earn his dog card by chasing a cat up a tree! 

Open your eyes BOO!!!
 Ha-ha! This picture cracks me up!  She held on though!

Boo spent some time behind the lens - I think she has a great eye! 

 Punkin has also been teaching our friends, the VanBemmel kids - I just adore the look of sheer joy on little K's face!! 

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Bloxels - A Timberdoodle Review

Here is another incredible product from Timberdoodle - Bloxels!!  To sum it up - Bloxels is the 
"Most Kid Friendly Video Game Platform Creation Ever!"
 I'll be the first to admit that I don't know a whole lot when it comes to video games.  My kids certainly know way more than I do, but even my girls aren't super crazy over video games.  But THIS has been a game changer - haha - see what I did there? GAME changer. 
 Bloxels is a unique combination of hands-on toy activity and video game creating.   What kid doesn't want to create a video game instead of just playing one?  The manipulatives combined with an app that you download to play the game brings this product to the next level in video games, critical thinking, HTML coding and more! It helps STEM come to life in our home in a fun and exciting way. 
 Each color block represents something like water, terrain, enemy, coin, hazard, or story.   So depending on where you place the blocks - you can literally create your own story within the game!  

 After you place the colored blocks where you want them, and after you create your own hero, you use the app to take a picture of your creation and it instantly becomes a video game! It amazes me how it can bridge the gap between the physical world and the virtual gaming world.  You can keep adding more art and animation and room layout and keep building your game.  You can even use advanced tools to adjust the physics of the game like how fast your hero runs or how high he jumps.   It was really interesting to see how as the girls started to play their game, how they had to go back and fix different things because it wasn't logical or practical.  There is so much critical thinking, problem solving and out of the box brain processing built into this game!

 Any kind of learning activity, game or toy that piques the interest of the 21-year-old college kid and the 10-year-old, and those in between is a product well made in my opinion!  It is geared towards ages 8 and up but is fascinating for any age - even adults! 

 As with most Timberdoodle products, this will definitely be part of our homeschooling days!  It will be a product that can be very simple or very complex in its learning and processing. 
 You can even share and collaborate with other Bloxel players and let them play the gameboard you have created!  

Bloxels is a product that crosses the age gaps in our home - and will be well used for MANY years to come! As always - Bentley, the world's cutest dog also approved. You can find Bloxels at Timberdoodle and also as part of the second grade curriculum kit

I was sent this product to review as a member of Timberdoodle's blog team.  All opinions are strictly my own.