LightSail for Homeschoolers (Review)

Disclosure: I received this complimentary product through the Homeschool Review Crew.

Are you looking for a complete homeschool reading curriculum for your budding readers or those who are more experienced? LightSail for Homeschoolers focuses on the four pillars of literacy: ReadingWritingVocabulary, and Fluency for students from Kindergarten to 12th grade.

Fluency includes melding speaking, writing, and listening with rubrics in

  • Reading Aloud
  • Narration
  • Memory Modules
  • Grading

Reading includes:

  • Content Controls
  • Unit Studies
  • Booklists in Classic, Faith-based, and Secular collections
  • The Entire World Book Encyclopedia, Atlas, and Timeline
  • Memory Work
  • Read-Alouds
  • Built-in Assessments
  • Grading

Vocabulary includes

  • Vocabulary and Definitions
  • Spelling Lists and Spellling Bees
  • Clozes in Texts
  • Dolch Sight Words
  • Grading

Writing includes:

  • Grammar Skills
  • Become an Author and Book Sharing
  • Essay Writing
  • Inquiry-Based Writing
  • Informal Writing Workshop
  • Grading
  • 15-Day Lexile Cycle

Our Experience:

Using technology to do her schoolwork is something that Christie doesn’t enjoy working on, but we thought we would give LightSail for Homeschoolers a try. She first learned what her current Lexile number is, read a book, answered questions, checked out different videos, began a unit study about gardening, and had fun looking at different Livestreams of kittens, airplanes, and city streets.

Both of us discovered that while there were many different and educational options, it was hard to navigate because of all the options. Personally I prefer a simple and straight forward program.

Vocabulary Control Panel for Parents

My Thoughts:

Likes:

I liked having the ability to test for a lexile number. I wasn’t sure what Christie’s number was, and I wasn’t surprised to learn that it is over 1500 as she is a voracious reader and works with complex texts. 

I liked that there are Livestream videos from around the world, with a fun selection of music. The Ted Talks and other videos are also great! (Just make sure that you watch them first, some are not appropriate for children.) The audio files are great too, because children can read along word-by-word, by sentence, or simply listen.

LightSail for Homeschoolers is a wonderful online reading program for those who learn more easily with a variety of methods.  

The provided unit studies are perfect for younger children, and I like that I can build my own unit studies for Christie based on her reading and watching interests.

Assigned United Study

Dislikes:

While I really like the options and potential of this language arts platform, there were almost too many choices, and I had a hard time navigating through everything offered in the premium subscription. I realize that it is a good idea to often read books at the best Lexile number for them, but many of these books weren’t the type of book that Christie would choose to read or were suitable for her. Sometimes to improve reading comprehension, it’s fun to listen to audio books, but the audio classics didn’t have Lexile numbers. 

Audio Classics

Christie’s Thoughts (10th Grade):

Dislikes:

  1. It was hard to navigate. I think that while this is a great idea, it is too complex, by adding all these extra things.
  2. There aren’t very many books that are close to my Lexile number. The books that have the highest Lexile numbers might not be appropriate for younger people who have high Lexile numbers. 
  3. I didn’t think there were the best book options, and not everyone wants to read on their computer.
Options in the Library

Likes:

  1. The Livestreams are nice and there is such a wide variety, from bird watching to airports in England.
  2. Being able to read what other students have written is really cool.
Video Options

Social Media Links:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/LightSailEd
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/lightsailed/

Recap of Pertinent Information:

Product Link: ReadingWritingVocabulary, and Fluency.

Vendor Information Link: LightSail for Homeschoolers

Age Appeal: PreK-12th

Format: Online Videos, Ebooks, and Audio Books (all areas have parental control)

Price and More: Please check the product link for current prices and more information.

Mama recommends LightSail for Homeschoolers Premium Subscription to those who have lots of time to explore and develop the best plan for their children.

Please click on the graphic below to learn what the other crew members on the review thought of this literacy platform. 

Photo of the Week! on the Homestead- Fall Fun 

Hi y’all! How is your week going? We went walking at a county park, and I just had to take photos and share them with you!

I thought it was a great time for a walk, the scenery was delightful, but the mosquitoes were not. They were enjoying me, but fortunately for me, I’m getting used to them and didn’t itch much.

Please enjoy the photos from an Iowa countryside.

Have a great week on your “homestead.” Enjoy the outdoors, and take some fun photos!

These photos were taken with a Samsung Galaxy J3 Luna Pro.

Photo of the Week! on the Homestead- Fall Garden Prep

Hi ya’ll!! How is your week going?

The following two photos are of the flower beds in front of our home and beside the garage. This time of year they look like a mess, because we have trees that like to grow, mulch that is disappearing, and a vine that loves to grow in the wrong place. It turns out that we even have wasps that we didn’t know about. There are multiple issues I need to ask about.

  • Is there something that you use instead of mulch? And what do you plant under a south facing window?
  • How do you get rid of trees that always come back?
  • What do you do to get rid of ferns (bottom photo)?

Thank you for all of your help! Have a great fall.

Have a great week on your “homestead.” Enjoy the outdoors, and take some fun photos!

These photos were taken with a Samsung Galaxy J3 Luna Pro.

Photo of the Week! on the Homestead- Fun Library Receipt

Hi ya’ll!! How is your week going? I’m sharing something a bit different this week!

I went to the library this past weekend and didn’t use the self-checkout like I usually do. When I opened my book and saw the receipt the librarian gave me, I knew I had to share it with you all.

Our library network got a new system in the middle of June, so I’ve saved $3,450.34, since June. (I check out a lot of books.) I’ve really been using our local library since 1997, so imagine how much money and space I’ve saved since then. Simple living at it’s best!!

Local Library Receipt

Have a great week on your “homestead.” Enjoy the outdoors, and take some fun photos!

These photos were taken with a Samsung Galaxy J3 Luna Pro.

Photo of the Week! on the Homestead- Trimming the Chokecherries

Hi ya’ll!! How is your week going? We finally had some nice weather, so I decided that I would get outside and take care of my roaming chokecherries. I needed to take my clippers and cut them out of the fence line as you will see in the photos. It was fun and rewarding to cut them out.

I had no idea when I planted my chokecherries around 19 years ago that they would grow 20 feet tall and send out lots of runners, but here in our climate, they do. I expected them to be nice bushes around 10 feet tall, because that is what I was used to in higher elevation Wyoming. Needless to say, I was surprised. Do you have any plants in your yard that have surprised you? Leave a comment and let me know!!

Have a great week on your “homestead.” Enjoy the outdoors, and take some fun photos!

These photos were taken with a Samsung Galaxy J3 Luna Pro.

Photo of the Week! on the Homestead- Morning Glory Beauty

Hi!! I hope everyone is doing well on their “homestead.” Everything is going well here. We are still in a drought, but it isn’t affecting our morning glories. They have been going strong since July. The first photo was taken in our backyard and the second, the front. Each morning there are many blooms in pink, blue, and purple. The backyard has many shades in those colors. They are only pink by our front door. I must admit that those colors aren’t my favorite, but they do brighten my day.

Enjoy the flowers!

From July
From Mid-September

Have a great week on your “homestead.” Enjoy the outdoors, and take some fun photos!

These photos were taken with a Samsung Galaxy J3 Luna Pro.

Photo of the Week! on the Homestead- The Grass is Green!

Hi, y’all!! So…you can see from the following photos that our lawn used to be brown with a little bit of green. We have had enough rain that the lawn is primarily green, and I need to mow it!!! I’m really excited, because that means that I will be able to purchase new seed, and it will grow this fall!

Just to let you in on a little secret, I was lightly watering parts of the lawn during the driest parts of the drought. It kept our grass strong.

Have you been having nice weather? Or are you in a drought too?

Have a great week on your “homestead.” Enjoy the outdoors, and take some fun photos!

These photos were taken with a Samsung Galaxy J3 Luna Pro.

Photo of the Week! on the Homestead-Measurable Rain!

Hi, y’all!! How has your week been? We had some measurable rain! On this day we had two separate storms that gave us around 2 inches. It’s a small drop in the bucket, but it’s something. I might actually need to mow the yard this coming weekend. It’s been a long time.

Have you been having nice weather?

It’s raining!! A lot.
Reflections after the rain

Have a great week on your “homestead.” Enjoy the outdoors, and take some fun photos!

These photos were taken with a Samsung Galaxy J3 Luna Pro.

ACT Mom Online Class (Review)

Disclosure: I received this complimentary product through the Homeschool Review Crew.

Do you have a child who needs guided help studying for the ACT? Or do you want your child to learn the best studying skills early? The ACT Mom Online Class from ACT Mom can help your children improve their scores in Math, Reading, English, and Science.

This online course contains over 10 hours of videos, online quizzes, practice tests, which have been released by the ACT, and extra resources. A binder will be mailed to you containing ACT practice tests in sheet protectors and graphing paper and a pencil pouch containing a dry erase marker, eraser, and sticky tabs when you purchase the course.

The English section contains seven sessions about comma splices, dangling modifiers, prepositional phrases, who/whom, and so much more!

The Reading section contains six session where your child will learn about the Reading Bullseye, Easy, Medium and Hard questions, and how to read different and answer questions in different genres.

The Science section has seven sessions about strategy, biology, chemistry, and physics.

The Math section has four sessions about probability, midpoint and distance formulas, volume, and so much more!

Our Experience:

Christie is in her second year of high school, so I know that she will be taking the ACT very soon. I was grateful for the opportunity to review this class, because I know how important it can be to score well on the test. It can open doors that otherwise may not be opened.

I thought I would let Christie select which sections she would complete first. She decided to work on Science and Math first, because she is stronger in English and Reading. Each section was divided into different sessions containing videos and quizzes. Some sessions would take several days to work on as they had many parts or the videos were long. I wanted her to take her time, so she would learn the most and have fun learning it. Practice needs to be fun, not forced. She has finished the sessions for Math and Science. Reading and English will come next, while she still practices Math and Science.

My Thoughts:

I remember studying for and taking the ACT when I was in high school. I think that if I had had someone who knew the best strategies for taking the test, I would have done better. I really appreciate how her passion and knowledge comes through from the introduction video to the instructional videos to the quizzes. I think it’s important for the students to see this, because it can make them excited for the test too. The results from her children show how her methods work and the importance of studying. Those taking the course can see that practice and recognizing the patterns are important based on her children’s improvement.

Informational Video in Each Section

I’m glad that Christie gained so much information while working on Math. Sometimes it takes the right explanation to make something click. When I looked at the quizzes, I really liked how there was an explanation for each of the questions. It’s so important to have an explanation for each of the questions. It will help everyone improve.

Science Quiz

Christie’s Thoughts (10th Grade):

What I like:

  1. I quite like the way she was explaining the math formulas, because it was explained better than some of the math I did last year.
  2. I like how she was engaging the whole time, making this a fun program to do.
  3. It is nice that the videos were split up into different sections. 
Explaining SOH CAH TOA in Math

What I don’t like:

  1. It would be nice if the practice tests provided in the binder had been newer, for those who don’t have the option to print out the latest ones from the website.

Social Media Links:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/actmom36

Recap of Pertinent Information:

Product Link: ACT Mom Online Class

Vendor Information Link: ACT Mom

Age Appeal: Those who need to prepare for the ACT.

Format: Online Videos, Downloadable Practice Tests, Physical Binder with Materials

Price and More: Please check the product link for current prices and more information.

Mama recommends this online ACT Tutor.

Please click on the graphic below to learn what the other crew members on the review thought of the ACT Mom Online Class.

Photo of the Week! On the Homestead: Tree Reflection

Hi, y’all!! How has your week been? It’s been going pretty well here.

It was finally cool enough with low humidity to spend some time outside. I was looking at our patio table and liked the texture and amount of reflection. What do you think?

What is it like where you live?

Have a great week on your “homestead.” Enjoy the outdoors, and take some fun photos!

These photos were taken with a Samsung Galaxy J3 Luna Pro by my daughter.