Not Back to School Blog Hop: Homeschooling with Autism & Learning to Read

2019 Annual Not Back to School Homeschool Blog Hop

Can Children With Autism Even Learn To Read??

I’m always shocked when I hear that some people actually believe their child with autism might never learn to read. But then I remember that not everyone has heard of Glenn Doman.

Who Is Glenn Doman?

Glenn Doman is the founder of Doman International and the creator of the Doman Method. He realized that if parents are given the tools to help their special needs children, they are more powerful then any therapist.

While creating a program to help brain injured children, he discovered that special needs children could be taught to read, even thought they were not able to speak.

While I always recommend all of his books to families of special needs kids, they two books I recommend for teaching your child to read are:

What To Do About Your Brain-injured Child: This is not a how to book, however I think it is important to understand the WHY behind a method.

How to Teach Your Baby to Read (The Gentle Revolution Series): This is the how to book to teach your child to read. Do not be thrown off by the title. This program works for neurotypical children up to the age of about 6 years old. But when it comes to special needs children, the window seems to be open much longer.

How We Taught Our Kids To Read

When I was introduced to Glenn Doman’s method of teaching, I did not follow it to a tee. I modified it to my family’s needs. At the time, I was a single mom who worked full time.

But you know what, it still worked!

When Zakari came along, we started teaching him to read as a newborn. And guess what? It worked even better!

We used programs like:

Once Zakari turned 4 years old, and I started working directly with IAHP, and then later Doman International, we turned to a more traditional Doman Method program.

If you want to read more about our journey teaching our children with Autism to not only read, but read well, check out the links below.

Videos About Teaching Children To Read

You can also check out some of my older videos about what I used to teach my son to read using the Doman Method.

How Reading Can Be a Tool for Kids with Autism to Communicate

Sometimes children with autism have trouble finding the words they want to use. By teaching them to read, they can use the written words in daily life to help them. My son is a visual learner and remembers things he has read. He remembers episode names of his favourite Netflix shows. When he wants to watch a certain show, he tells us by title.

When we are not sure what he wants, we provide a choice board. For example at lunch I can write a few options for him to pick from if I want him to pick what we are having for lunch.

But beyond asking basic question of his needs and wants, I can ask him questions about how he is feeling, what his favourite animal is, etc. I am able to use the choice board to get to know my son better as a person. Honestly that is just wonderful, as a lot of children with autism never get the chance to share that with their parents.

Teach Your Child With Autism to Read, Even If They Cannot Speak

Glenn Doman always said, the ability to demonstrate intelligence is not an indication of intelligence. Just because a child cannot speak, do not assume they cannot think. If a child can speak, but has difficulty answering a question, don’t assume they do not know. It could be their brain and their mouth are not able to work together and express the answer.

Think of children like Carly Fleischmann, a young woman with autism and is nonverbal, who used a keyboard to type out what she wanted to say what she wanted to say. Her brain was just not allowing her to communicate the way she wanted to. But she could think and understood the world around her.

Please teach your child with autism to read. They want to learn more then anything. It is a tool that can be more beneficial then you can even image.

Please check out the links and linky below to find Not Back to School Homeschool post from other homeschoolers!

CREW @ Homeschool Review Crew2019 Annual Not Back to School Homeschool Blog Hop 
Chareen @ Every Bed of RosesABC of Homeschooling
Dawn @ Schoolin’ Swag Adding Fun to Your Homeschool Day
Erin @ For Him and My Family Large Family Homeschooling
Lori @ At Home Where Life Happens Learning Life Skills
Monique @ Mountain of Grace HomeschoolingHomeschooling the High School Years
Yvie @ Homeschool On the Range 5 Days of Upper Grades Homeschooling
Abby @ Making Room 4 One More – Time Management for Homeschool Moms
Amanda @ Hopkins Homeschool5 Days of Homeschool Questions
Amy @ the WRITE BalanceYear-Round Schooling
Annette @ A Net in TimeHomeschooling.
Betty @ Lets Get RealHomeschooling High School
Cassandra @ My Blessed MessEclectic Homeschooling
Homeschool Collection August 2019 Edition

Not Back to School Blog Hop: Homeschooling with Autism

2019 Annual Not Back to School Homeschool Blog Hop

Why Would Anyone Want to Homeschool Their Child With Autism?

Parents sometimes assume that sending their child with ASD to school is the best thing that they can do for them. They feel they are not qualified enough. But that is just simply not true.

If you as a parent you feel compelled to homeschool, you should explore your options. You may not have a teaching degree, or any child development training, and that’s OK. In the end you are the leading expert in the most important subject. That subject is your child.

No one knows your child better then you do. What triggers a meltdown, what helps soothe an overstimulated moment, what your child’s strengths are. Sure teachers can get to learn a lot about their students, but they will never know your child the way you do.

As long as you are willing to learn along side with your child, you are qualified. I became a better reader by teaching my kiddos to read. Back when I learned to read, I did it basically by the whole word method. Phonics just did not make sense to me. However after teaching two kiddos how to read, I have figured out phonics myself.

Pros and Cons

Like anything parents need to evaluate the pros and cons of homeschooling.


  • You know your child best
  • The curriculum can be adapted for your child. They are no longer forced to fit into a cookie cutter program laid out by the school, designed for neurotypical children.
  • Because homeschool does not need happen between 9-3, our kiddos can attend any therapy that you want them to and they do not have to miss school.
  • During a regular school day a lot of time is spent just managing the class. You can spend less time doing actual school because your time is typically used more effectively at home. This allows your child to spend extra time working on special interests, or therapy.
  • Movement breaks are easy to incorporated.


  • Requires parents to be organized: It is the parents responsibility to make sure your family is meeting the states or provinces homeschool regulations.
  • Less breaks or downtime for parents: Not only are you mom, but you also become teacher too. There is no downtime during the school day for respite.
  • Some school divisions will not allow homeschool students to access public services like Occupational therapy, speech therapy, etc, and parents must pay out of pocket. That being said, with our school division, we are not missing much. Most of these services are stretched thin as it is, and students are getting maybe 30 mins every few months of services. Hardly enough to be effective.
  • Cost of curriculum. While you can homeschool for cheap or next to nothing, I have found, you either pay with your money or you pay with your time.

Why Do We Homeschool Our Son With Autism

Last month I shared a dedicated post to Why We Homeschool. You can check out that post for a detailed explanation.

But for the Coles Notes version, we homeschool mostly because:

  • of safety.
  • the ability to tailor our son’s education to his interests, learning style and needs
  • we know our son is extremely intelligent, however in a classroom setting he would likely be managed and not educated. We want to support his weaknesses while helping him blossom more in his strengths. We believe home is the best place for this.
  • we need to allow time for alternative therapies that have helped him so much.

Homeschooling your child with autism, or any other special needs can be a daunting endeavor. But the fruits of your labor can be second to none.

Looking for a new homeschooling blog to follow?

Boy do I have a list for you! Check out these awesome homeschoolers in the list below and the linky! Your in for a real treat.

Homeschool Collection August 2019 Edition

YET ANOTHER USA HOMESCHOOL BOOK HAUL Part 2: Homeschooling on a Budget

Books, books & more books…

I love doing book hauls! However it is not unusual for me to be behind on getting them posted. I finally release the second of my book hauls from the spring.

Since we are heading back down to the states in a few weeks I figured I better get my butt moving to share these. So stay tune, next weekend I will be posting the last of my USA Homeschool Book Haul.

Without further ado:

Meet Martin Luther King, Jr. (Landmark Books)

I Have a Dream: The Story of Martin Luther King

Ben and Me: An Astonishing Life of Benjamin Franklin by His Good Mouse Amos

The Secret Soldier: The Story of Deborah Sampson

DK Biography: Benjamin Franklin: A Photographic Story of a Life

DK Biography Abraham Lincoln: A Photographic Story of a Life

DK Biography: Martin Luther King, Jr.: A Photographic Story of a Life

Walt Disney: Young Movie Maker (Childhood of Famous Americans)

Anne Frank: Young Diarist (Childhood of World Figures)

Turn On The Light, Thomas Edison! (Before I Made History)

Go Fly a Kite, Ben Franklin!

The Castle Mystery (The Boxcar Children 36)

The Mystery of the Purple Pool (The Boxcar Children Mysteries 38)

The Mystery of Star Ruby (The Boxcar Children Mysteries Book 89)

The Mystery of Mummy’s Curse (The Boxcar Children Mysteries Book 88)

The Hockey Mystery (The Boxcar Children 80)

The Canoe Trip Mystery (The Boxcar Children Mysteries)

The Mystery of Lost Village (The Boxcar Children Mysteries Book 37)

Despicable Me 2 – The Official Minion Manual – Poster Included

Minions: Who’s the Boss?

Frog and Toad Together (I Can Read Level 2)

Helen Keller (In Their Own Words)

Thomas Edison :In Their Own Words

Dolphin Freedom

In Their Own Words: Pocahontas

Get on Board: The Story of the Underground Railroad

The Wright Brothers (In Their Own Words)

Wright Brothers At Kitty Hawk

Who Was Michael Jackson?

Henry and the Paper Route (Henry Huggins)

The Secrets of Droon 21: Flight of the Genie

Benjamin Franklin (In Their Own Words)

Dying to Meet You (43 Old Cemetery Road)

Over My Dead Body; 43 Cemetery Road-Book Two

Till Death Do Us Bark (43 Old Cemetery Road)

The Phantom of the Post Office (43 Old Cemetery Road)

Five True Dog Stories (Little Apple)

Shadow of the Shark (Magic Tree House Merlin Mission)

Leon’s Story (Sunburst Books)

World’s Dumbest Crooks

The Adventures of Grandfather Frog (Dover Children’s Thrift Classics)

Uncle Wiggily Bedtime Stories: In Easy-to-Read Type (Dover Children’s Thrift Classics)

Little Bear’s Friend (An I Can Read Book)

Little Bear (An I Can Read Book)

Dear Dr. Bell. . . Your Friend, Helen Keller

Clementine, Friend of the Week (A Clementine Book)

Stone Fox

The Story of Harriet Tubman: Conductor of the Underground Railroad (Dell Yearling Biography)

A to Z Mysteries Super Edition 7: Operation Orca

Pee Wee Scouts: Moans and Groans and Dinosaur Bones

Pee Wee Scouts: Cookies and Crutches

Pee Wee Scouts: Bad, Bad Bunnies

Pee Wee Scouts: Blue Skies, French Fries

Lucky Dog Days (Pee Wee Scouts)

Donkey Rescue (Petsitters Club)

The Mare’s Tale (Pet Vet)

Motorbike Bob (Pet Vet)

The Kitten’s Tale (Pet Vet)

The Pup’s Tale (Pet Vet)

The Mystery in Hawaii: The 50th State (Real Kids Real Places)

The Curse of the Ancient Acropolis (Around the World In 80 Mysteries)

Let me know what was the best book you found in your last used book haul!

This post does contain affiliate links

Homeschool Collection August 2019 Edition

Raising Bookworms: What We Read in July 2019

We Want To Read All The Books…

So we got a little side tracked from our summer reading basket this month. But that is OK, because we were just digging in deeper and learning more.

I know that the Magic Tree House series gets a lot of slack. People either love it or hate it. I will admit, when I read on a forum that one woman calls them “Jack and Annie said” books, I couldn’t disagree with that comment.

However, in my opinion they are still very valuable. The characters are lovable and they introduce Zakari to family people and places. They plant the seed in his head, and it allows us to dig deeper.

In July, The Magic Tree House released a new book all about Benjamin Franklin. So you will see we took that and ran with it.

Check out my video to get a better look at which books we read, and you can find the links below for each book.

Calendar Mysteries 7: July Jitters

The Woodshed Mystery (The Boxcar Children Mysteries)

The Puppy Place 18: Sweetie

Clifford: Cookie Crazy (Clifford the Big Red Dog)

Five True Horse Stories (A Little Apple Paperback)

Little House Friends (Little House Chapter Book)

Night of the New Magicians (Magic Tree House Merlin Mission)

Turn On The Light, Thomas Edison! (Before I Made History)

To the Future, Ben Franklin! (Magic Tree House)

Ben and Me: An Astonishing Life of Benjamin Franklin by His Good Mouse Amos

Go Fly a Kite, Ben Franklin!

Benjamin Franklin (In Their Own Words)

Who Was Ben Franklin?

Benjamin Franklin (10 Days)

What Is the Declaration of Independence? (What Was?)

Louis Braille: Bringer of Hope to the Blind (People Who Made a Difference)

What did you and your kiddos read in July? Let me know in the comments below!

This post contains affiliate links. We are grateful every time you use our links to get your books on Amazon.

Homeschool Collection August 2019 Edition

YET ANOTHER USA HOMESCHOOL BOOK HAUL Part 1: Homeschooling on a Budget

Back in May I went to the USA without the kids and spent a whole weekend with my parents and younger brother. We drove out to Fargo, North Dakota in my parents motor home.

Because my dad was driving, I was able to read the whole way out. I read A Child Called It: One Child’s Courage to Survive & The Lost Boy: A Foster Child’s Search for the Love of a Family Lately if you look through my Goodreads, its easy to see most of the books I read are of the children’s variety. So it was nice to read something that was not written for children for once.

Don’t get me wrong, I love reading children’s stories with my kids, but sometimes a Mama needs some adult conversation.

Of course on the way in I stopped at Mike’s Parcel Service and picked up several boxes of books, curriculum and supplements. I also bought a HUGE 600 page package of laminating sheets. Sadly Amazon packed it will my box of puzzles, and the laminating sheets were so heavy they destroyed the wooden box. Thankfully Amazon refunded me the money for the puzzles and my dad was able to repair the box.

It was such a nice get away, and felt like the old days. We laughed and talked about the old times when my brother and I were kids. I know that this weekend away will be one of those memories I have with me for always.

My mom and I did very good on our Weight Watchers plan. We were able to track and still lose weight at our weigh in the following week. I stocked up on products that I cannot get in Canada and we tried a few need products, and loved them.

Crossing the border was a nightmare. We did not calculate our receipts the way the border patrol wanted us to and we were hauled in. Sadly I depended on my phone to proved receipts for the items I picked up at the border, and for the first time ever I could not get reception at the border. Thankfully, the border patrol officer inside was much nicer, and took pity on us. After a quick look through the motor home, he waved us through.

All I know, is now I plan to have the numbers added up in different ways, ready to go. I will also not depend on my phone to proved receipts. I will print my PayPal and Amazon invoices before I head out.

So of course, if your like me your saying: So what books did you pick up??

Check out the video below to see Part 1 of my USA Haul. Below you can find all the links to the books mentioned. Stay tuned for the next two parts of this USA Haul!


From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler

Phineas L. Macguire: Brownies Soothe the Savage Beast

Phineas L. Macguire Gets Cooking Part 1

The Turret

Miss Bianca in the Salt Mines

Miss Bianca

Miss Bianca in the Orient

The Rescuers 

Little Farm in the Ozarks (Little House, The Rocky Ridge Years)

In the Land of the Big Red Apple (Little House Sequel)

Amelia Earhart: Young Air Pioneer (Young Patriots series)

Helen Keller (History Maker Bios Series)

Hurricane Heroes in Texas (Magic Tree House)

Warriors in Winter (Magic Tree House)

The Mystery at the Roman Colosseum (Around the World In 80 Mysteries)

Mystery at Kill Devil Hills Carole Marsh Mysteries

The Mystery at Mount Fuji (Around the World In 80 Mysteries)

Harriet Tubman: The Road to Freedom (Easy Biographies)

Albert Einstein: Creative Genius

Adventures of Little Critter (An I Can Read Book Series)

Adventures of Little Critter (An I Can Read Book Series)

Penny Dora and the Wishing Box Volume 1

Spectrum Paperback Math Book, Grade 1, Ages 6-7

Science K & Up (Kumon Sticker Activity Books)

Science Sticker Activity Book (Kumon Sticker and Activity)

Geography: U.S. and Canad Book (Kumon Sticker Activity Books, Pre-K & Up)

You Wouldn’t Want to Explore With Sir Francis Drake!

Little Critter® Little Red Riding Hood: A Lift-the-Flap Book

How Much Is a Million? (Reading Rainbow Books)

If You Made a Million

Skeletons (The Magic School Bus, A Science Fact Finder)

Champ: Gallant Collie

Florence Nightingale (Usborne)

Dear America: Down the Rabbit Hole

Dear America: A Journey to the New World

Dear America: A Light in the Storm

Dear America: A Picture of Freedom

Elizabeth Blackwell: The First Woman Doctor

The Cat Who Went to Heaven

Sadako and the 1000 Paper Cranes

Rose at Rocky Ridge (Little House Chapter Book)

Brookfield Days (A Little House Chapter Book; Caroline 1)

Pioneer Sisters: (Little House Chapter Book)

Rose and Alva: (Little House Chapter Book)

The Chocolate Touch

Muffy’s Secret Admirer: A Marc Brown Arthur Chapter Book 17 

The Lucky Stone (Yearling Book)

Meet Abraham Lincoln (Landmark Books)

I Am Albert Einstein

Henry and the Paper Route (Henry Huggins)

The USA (Horrible Histories Special)

Happy Birthday, Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle

The Berenstain Bear Scouts and the Terrible Talking Termite (Berenstain Bear Scouts)

The Berenstain Bear Scouts and the Ripoff Queen (Berenstain Bear Scouts)

Hachiko Waits: Based on a True Story

Double Dog Trouble

The Penguin Problem (Ready, Freddy!, No. 19)

The Whipping Boy

Dear America: The Winter of Red Snow

Dear America: So Far From Home

Dear America: When Will This Cruel War Be Over?

The Journal of Scott Pendleton Collins: A World War II Soldier Normandy France, 1944

The Journal of James Edmond Pease a Civil War Union Soldier (My Name is America)

My America: My Brother’s Keeper: Virginia’s Civil War Diary, Book One

My America: Freedom’s Wings: Corey’s Underground Railroad Diary, Book One

My America: Flying Free: Corey’s Underground Railroad Diary, Book Two

My America: Westward To Home: Joshua’s Oregon Trail Diary, Book One

My America: A Perfect Place: Joshua’s Oregon Trail Diary, Book Two

Pippi Goes on Board (Pippi Longstocking)

Pippi in the South Seas (Pippi Longstocking)

The Courage of Sarah Noble

The Well : David’s Story (Logan Family Saga)

Who Conducted the Underground Railroad and Other Questions About the Path to Freedom

Triplet Trouble and the Talent Show Mess

Philip Hall Likes Me, I Reckon Maybe (Puffin Newberry Library)

Kidnapped (A Stepping Stone Book)

Me Oh Maya 13 (Time Warp Trio)

Martin Luther King Jr. (Heroes of America)

Bobbsey Twins 01: The Bobbsey Twins of Lakeport

Bobbsey Twins 02: The Bobbsey Twins’ Adventure in the Country

Bobbsey Twins 04: Mystery at School

The Bobbsey Twins On a Houseboat 

The Bobbsey Twins’ Big Adventure at Home (The Bobbsey Twins 8)

Bobbsey Twins 09: The Bobbsey Twins’ Search in the Great City

The Bobbsey Twins’ Adventure in Washington (Bobbsey Twins, No. 12)

The Bobbsey Twins Camping Out (The Bobbsey Twins, No. 16)

The Mandie Collection, Vol. 2: Books 6-10

Mandie Collection: 6

Have you read any of these books? What did you and your kiddos think?

Homeschool Collection {Monthly Round UP}

This post does include affiliate links. We appreciate it if you want to get any of the books mentioned in this post or video that you use our link. It helps us get more materials for Zakari’s homeschool.

Year Round Homeschooling: What We Do In The Summer

Summer Homeschool Plans

I cannot believe that it is July already! My big kids are out of public and private school for the summer. But what about Zakari? Do we put the books away for 2 months as well?

No, no we don’t.

What Did I Want Year Round Homeschooling to Look Like?

Early on year round homeschooling just made sense to me. I just had to work though how this was going to look for our family. 

I knew I didn’t want to slow down our learning during September to June. Zakari was completely capable of doing a full course load during the school year. But starting the next years curriculum in April or May didn’t seem right either. Some times children need those few months to mature enough to be able to handle the next level. So what should I do then?

Why We Homeschool in the Summer

Well wait! We homeschool in the summer?? What kind of monster am I? Kids need breaks too!
Whoa whoa whoa! I’m not a crazy slave driver. I do not have my 1st, almost 2nd grade son sitting at a table 6 hours a day, 5 days a week, 52 weeks a year. 
Like many homeschool moms, I work from home. For me working from home is running a home daycare. But we still are able to get what we need done, giving my son even more free time then his public & private school siblings. 

What Our Regular School Day Looks Like:


Playtime/daycare activities

Several hours outside 


Daycare kiddos lay down for nap or go off to preschool

Zakari and I homeschool for two hours with several movement breaks.

Daycare wakes up. 


Playtime/daycare activities

Outside till daycare kids are picked up. 

ABA tutor does 1.5-2 hours of ABA Monday-Wednesday. 


Family time 

Bedtime routine

Read aloud time till Zakari falls asleep (30mins to 1hr 30mins)  

Our schedule will look different come September. We will no longer be working with ABA. Zakari will start his Doman International program again & maybe a music class. But for the rest of the July this is what our average day looks like.

This year I have been blessed with the majority of August off. I’m hoping to be able to get a lot of school work done and even more outings in!

What We Are Using to Homeschool This Summer

For the last few years our main homeschool curriculum as been Bookshark. Last summer when we finished Bookshark PreK in April, we started Build Your Library Level 0 right away. This year I decided not to do a full curriculum from spring to fall. We had so many awesome resources I had hoarded collected over the last few years, to collect and purchase another full curriculum did not seem economical.

So I spent some time going through what we already had and I came up with this:

180 Days of Science: Grade K: In January we started working through 180 Days of Science for Kindergarten. We usually did a few pages a few times a week. But we still had some left at the end of June. So we will be working to complete this book.

180 Days of Spelling and Word Study: Grade K: Zakari started working though this book in the spring. We were really happy with the lay out, and how it is helping reinforce spelling basic words. It has been great practice for him. If you want to read more about this book you can check out my review here: 180 Days of Spelling & Word Study Kindergarten: Review

180 Days of Social Studies: Grade K: We also started this workbook in January and are nowhere’s near completing it yet. But that OK. I’m not in a hurry, but we would like to start hitting it 1-2 times a week. If we have to add it to our September line up that is totally fine with us!

180 Days of Reading: Grade K : This was another book we received from Teachers Created Material in the Spring to review. Even though Zakari is reading at a much higher level then this, the stories and comprehension questions are short and multiple choice, making them ideal for learning how to answer questions.

First Start Reading Books C to E: When we started reviewing First Start Reading earlier in 2019, I never imaged the impact it would make on Zakari’s spelling skills.

Sure as we near the end of book C, he really hasn’t learned how to read any new words, as he already knew them. However I can see the repetition and copy work are helping him understand how words are spelled out. In the short time we have been using this program, he has gone from not being able to spell at all(besides his first name), to being able to spell most 3 letter words, starting to spell 4 letter words and now can spell his last name too.

Rhythm & Writing Program

Usborne First Sticker Books

One thing I have noticed with Zakari is he has been able to control his impulses more this year. This has allowed him to be able to do more fine motor work. Last year he was unable to use stickers. If he did get the sticker off the sticker sheet, he would rip it, or mouth it.

Now he can scan a sheet of stickers for the right sticker, remove said sticker, and place it in the right spot in the book. If the sticker rips its by accident, and he no longer even tries to bring it to his mouth. These sticker books have become very enjoyable to him, often how I coax him to the table to the table to start on school. Once he has warmed up using these sticker books, he is more then happy to start working on other assignments.

Preschool Beginner Math: for 2-4 year olds This is a program that I did purchase for summer. It is written by a YouTuber that I just love, Jady A. While I know Zakari is well past a Preschool math level, there are some concepts that must be know in order to really thrive with Math. So we are going to quickly power through this book to make sure there are no holes in his math education.

This is especially important with children on the Autism spectrum. They are notorious for grasping higher level concepts and having no understanding of another concept on a much lower level. This mean it can be quite easy for us teachers to just assume they know something.

At the end of the school year we started working through Houghton Mifflin Reading: Student Edition Grade 1.1 Here We Go reader that I got in a used Calvert Grade 1 curriculum pack. While we didn’t use a lot of the pack this year, I really liked these textbooks. So this summer we are reading 1-2 stories in these books 3-4 times a week. I’m hoping that come September we can dive right into the Grade 2 books, but if we have a bit of the Grade 1 readers that’s OK too.

Houghton Mifflin Reading: Student Anthology, Grade 1.2 – Let’s Be Friends

Houghton Mifflin Reading: Student Edition Grade 1.3 Surprises 

Houghton Mifflin Reading, Student Edition Grade 1.4, Treasures

Houghton Mifflin Reading: Student Anthology Grade 1.5 Wonders 

The Sassafras Science Adventures: Volume One: Zoology:(NOT IN THE VIDEO) This is not something I planned on using this summer. But while at a fellow homeschool mom friends birthday party, she lent me The Sassafras Science Adventure Vol 1 & 2. I planned on holding onto it for the new school year, but once I got my hands on it we landed up diving right in.

Can you believe I even found the teachers guide at the thrift store this week? It was a sign that we were meant to work though this curriculum.

Summer Reading Club

Zakari with his 2018 Summer Reading Club Haul

Last year we were introduced to Abby’s Usborne Summer Reading Program. This worked out so great for us because it made sure we were keeping up with our reading during the summer. It also give us the chance to order books on the American side of Usborne. I was surprise to see the US side of the company was a much larger selection then the Canadian side.

So when I saw Abby’s video this spring saying she was doing another Summer Reading Club, I jumped on the chance to join again. We just complete the program and Zakari logged 1900 minutes. 500 more minutes then last year. Plus so many family members this year generously made pledges. Stay tune for an Usborne Haul video.

Outside plans

Of course a large part of our summer will be enjoying the great outdoors. We live in Winnipeg, Manitoba, infamously know as “Winterpeg”. So I have promised myself to get the kids outside as much as possible, knowing that the upcoming winter will come fast and as usual hit hard.

So far we have hit 2 splash pads, been to a few different beaches 3 times, and have been to two pool parties. Plus we enjoyed many hikes and park visits.

Upcoming Doman International Appointment  

In a little less then a month, we will be meeting with Doman International via video call. In the meantime, we are getting ready. This means hair metal testing, blood work, and sending stool samples off. I’m also sure that in a few or two I will receive a packet of forms to fill out.

I’m excited to meet with the team again and start planning for Zakari’s upcoming therapies. This is it, them and us, figuring out what makes Zakari tick. He has come so far, and I know since IAHP and Doman International split, Doman International has been using new programs that were not available when we last visited. Plus Zakari has grown and developed so much already, I”m sure he’s reading for a whole lot more.

One program we will not be doing is patterning. As much as I understand the benefits, I could just never get a team together to do it enough to make it beneficial for Zakari. So I’d rather focus my energies on programs we can make work.

Few Days Away

Last year we took the kids down south to Grand Forks, North Dakota to go spend a few days at Canad Inns hotel. There we are going to get the bulk of our school supply shopping down, pick up some homeschool resources at the border parcel pick service, and spend tons of time at the water park.

You can read more about our trip last year here: Traveling With Autism: Mini Vacation Grand Forks 2018

Homeschool Mama’s! What are your summer plans?

I always love hearing about how other families spend their time during the summer. What do you do? Please share in the comments below!

Homeschool Collection {Monthly Round UP}

Raising Bookworms: What We Read in June 2019

Raising Zakari to love books is a passion of mine. My goal while homeschooling him is to expose him to as many great books as possible. I know kids grow so fast and that my time with him while he is small is limited.

This June turned into a month where we read even more then usual. I made sure wherever we went that I had a book with us. We really took advantage of almost ever moment we could get in a bit of reading.

This month we read 23 chapter books! I think that is a new record for us!

If you want to see what we read, check out my latest video! And if you want links to the books we read, keep scrolling down to check them out!

Calendar Mysteries 6: June Jam: Zakari and I just cannot get enough of the younger siblings of the A to Z Mysteries series. We love scheduling these books into our read alouds. Most of these I was able to find used, however we were missing June. When we find a good series I have no issues paying full price for them. Once again author Ron Roy did not disappoint!

Cars 2: Fueled for Adventure (Disney Chapter Book): When I read a book, to me it is like a movie going on in my head. That is not always the case for all readers. So I think it is beneficial for kids to read books about characters they may already know from TV shows or movies. It makes it easier for them to image what is happening in the story.

This Little Pig (Janette Oke’s Animal Friends)

Farm Rescue: I was pleasantly surprised with this book. Zakari and I read another book by this author and we were not impressed. I actually landed up selling the whole series because I knew we would not read them. When I realized who wrote this book, I was nervous, but this series seems to be more our style of books. So I’m excited to continue reading this series.

The Mystery of Pony Hollow (A Stepping Stone Book)

Laura & Nellie: (Little House Chapter Book)

Zombies Don’t Play Soccer (The Adventures of the Bailey School Kids, 15)

Passager: The Young Merlin Trilogy, Book One: This book was a bit out of our usual style of reading. But seeing as we are reading the Magic Tree House Merlin Missions, I thought it might be fun to read about Merlin’s early years. Overall we liked it.

Animal Adventures: (Little House Chapter Book)

Liz Learns a Lesson (The Critter Club)

Firefighter Dog (Artlist Collection, The Dog) We really impressed with this book. It take place at the point for view of the dog. It was neat to learn about why dalmatians are often used as a fire dog.

Hollywood Spaniel (Artlist Collection: The Dog) Another great story from the point of view of two dogs. One dog is a famous TV star, while the other is lives with a poor family. They switch places, and when it is discovered the switch lands up helping everyone involved.

Jack (The Puppy Place 17) Charles and Lizzie have their work cut out for them when they try and help find a forever home for Jack, who loves to chew… on everything.

Claude at the Beach: This was such a cute book. Honestly the only reason I grab this at the book sale is because my dad’s name is Claude. But after reading this one, if I found more in the series I would pick them up.

Frog Power (The Cul-de-Sac Kids) (Book 5)

Blue Bay Mystery (The Boxcar Children Mysteries Book 6)

Warriors in Winter (Magic Tree House)

The Spell Thief (Little Legends) This is a new series I picked up from the Scholastic Book Club. One line in the whole book had everyone busting a gut while I read aloud in the car.

“Such a wonderful spell!” exclaimed the stepmother wistfully. “I remember turning my third ex-husband‘s new wife into a cake using that spell. Of course it didn’t last very long, just a couple of hours – just long enough for her family to get hungry.” 

Hurricane Heroes in Texas (Magic Tree House) This had to be one of my favorite Magic Tree House books, it is tied with Tonight on the Titanic (Magic Tree House, No. 17)

A Ghost in the Castle (The Kingdom of Wrenly) We were so excited when this came in the mail early! We had preordered it of course, because we are addicted to The Kingdom of Wrenly. So when it arrived several days before its actual release date, we dove right in. Every time we get a preordered book ahead of schedule, we always feel special knowing we are of a small handful who got to read it early.

Ballpark Mysteries 1: The Fenway Foul-up

School Days (Little House Chapter Book)

Daisy the Kitten (Dr. KittyCat 3): This series was recommended to me by a YouTube friend. We enjoyed it, I’m not sure I would pay full price for them, but if I come across any of the others in the series at the next book sale or a thrift store I would be sure to grab them.

Thanks for checking out what we read in June! Share with me in the comments what you and your kiddos are reading.

This post does include affiliate links. If you decide to get any of these books we would appreciate if you used the links in this post. Amazon gives us a small commission at no extra charge to you.

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Summer Reading List for Year Round Homeschoolers

Summer Reading Club 2019

Once again this year Zakari is participating in the Summer Reading Club. Our goal this year is to read 1200 mins between June 1st and July 15th. A few days in and we are making great time.

Last year Zakari beat the 1200 mins goal by 200 mins reading 1400 mins total. He was blessed to be able to earn a bunch of awesome books for this passed homeschool year! Also the 2018 Summer Reading Club as a whole earned $750 worth of books for under privileged kids! This year we have a larger club, so we are hoping to earn even more books for underprivileged kids.

Since this program only runs till July 15th, we will also be joining the TD Summer Reading Club at our local library that runs. Registration for that program starts June 15th, and runs to August 23rd.

Summer Reading List

This year I decided to create a reading basket full of pre-selected books. I know I love looking up reading list to get ideas from. So I hope this reading list will inspire you to try out some new books and series with your children or students. I’m still going to doing our Raising Bookworm series here on the blog and my YouTube channel, that way I can update you guys on which books worked for our family!

Summer Reading Video

Summer Reading List

Hurricane Heroes in Texas (Magic Tree House)

Warriors in Winter (Magic Tree House)

To the Future, Ben Franklin! (Magic Tree House)

Night of the New Magicians (Magic Tree House Merlin Mission)

Blizzard of the Blue Moon (Magic Tree House)

Night of the Ninth Dragon (Magic Tree House Merlin Mission)

Calendar Mysteries: June Jam

Calendar Mysteries: July Jitters

Calendar Mysteries: August Acrobat

Jack (The Puppy Place 17)

The Puppy Place 18: Sweetie

The Puppy Place 19: Baxter

Ballpark Mysteries 1: The Fenway Foul-up

The Pinstripe Ghost (Ballpark Mysteries)

Frog Power (Cul-de-Sac Kids Book 5)

The Mystery of Case D. Luc (The Cul-de-Sac Kids 6)

The Stinky Sneakers Mystery (The Cul-de-Sac Kids 7)

Pickle Pizza (The Cul-de-Sac Kids 8)

Blue Bay Mystery (The Boxcar Children Mysteries Book 6)

The Woodshed Mystery (The Boxcar Children Mysteries)

The Lighthouse Mystery (The Boxcar Children Mysteries Book 8)

Passager: The Young Merlin Trilogy, Book One

Hobby: The Young Merlin Trilogy, Book Two

Merlin: The Young Merlin Trilogy, Book Three

Leader of the Pack (Artlist Collection the DOG)

Firefighter Dog (Artlist Collection, The Dog)

Hollywood Spaniel (Artlist Collection: The Dog)

Lab to the Rescue (Artlist Collection: The Dog)

Animal Adventures: (Little House Chapter Book)

Laura & Nellie (Little House Chapter Book)

School Days:(Little House Chapter Book)

Liz Learns a Lesson (The Critter Club)

Marion Takes a Break (The Critter Club)

Amy Meets Her Stepsister (The Critter Club)

Bee Movie: The Junior Novel

Cars 2: Fueled for Adventure (Disney Chapter Book)

Daisy the Kitten (Dr. KittyCat 3)

This Little Pig (Janette Oke’s Animal Friends)

The Mystery of Pony Hollow

Zombies Don’t Play Soccer (The Adventures of the Bailey School Kids, 15)

Claude at the Beach

A Ghost in the Castle (The Kingdom of Wrenly)

The Spell Thief (Little Legends)

Do you have any summer reading plans? Any book suggestions that we should check out? Please share in the comments below!

This blog post contains affiliate links.

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Raising Bookworms: What We Read in April 2019

Another month gone by…

Does anyone else feel like 2019 is just flying by?

So once again this month I got laryngitis yet again. I’m really not to sure why I keep getting it. Usually I get it once every year to year and a half. But so far I have gotten it twice in 4 months.

So as you can image, losing my voice put a damper on our homeschool and read aloud time. However we still managed to read 16 chapter books and 70 picture books.

One thing we tried this month was binge reading series. I usually try to read one book from each series that we are reading through. But what I found was we had so many series on the go that we were not hitting them all. So we started binge reading some of the series we were close to done. Now when a new book in that series comes out, we can preorder it and anticipate the release date.

I’m happy to say that I still am debt free with the local library. We have really been utilizing it, and the Library app has made managing our account so much easier.

What We Read in April…

Without further ado, you can find the video of the chapter books we read below. And below that you will see the list of the chapter books and picture books.

Chapter Books

1)Mike’s Mystery (The Boxcar Children Mysteries) Honestly the Boxcar Children never disappoint. I’m really hoping that once we finish the original 19 books written by Gertrude Chandler Warner, that we will still enjoy the rest of the series. I’ve heard mixed reviews on the books after #19.

2)The Magic Tree House 29: Christmas in Camelot This is the first book in the Merlin Missions series that we have read. At this point the books are a bit longer. But overall, just as good as the original 28 books in the series.

3)The Story of Doctor Dolittle When I think Doctor Dolittle, I think of the 1998 Eddie Murphy Movie. So I really wasn’t sure what to expect. I have to say I was pleasantly surprised. The book is nothing like the movie. It is a lot more enjoyable. I highly recommend giving this book a chance. Both my son and I enjoyed it, and I am looking for more from the series. (Yes its a series, and if you’ve been here long enough, you know how much I love book series!)

4)Penny and Peter (Odyssey/Harcourt Young Classic): Earlier in the school year, Bookshark introduced us to Here’s a Penny, and we needed to read the next book in the series. I was so happy when I saw it become available for sale from one of the ladies I buy used books from on Facebook. I’m also happy to say, it did not disappoint! Only issue is the 3rd book in the series has not been reprinted, and I can only find vintage copies. Question is do I spend $20 on an used book?

The Swamp Robber (Sugar Creek Gang, Book 1) This was a reading fail for us, and we did not finish it. We did not care for it at all. I found it to be too preachy. A lot of talk about who is a good Christian and who isn’t, not enough of a story line. It took all of me to put it away. I always like to finish a book when I start it, no matter how much I dislike it. But I decided that it is more important to foster the love of reading.

I have almost the whole series, but I will be packing them up. I’m debating back and forth about selling them or keeping them to see if we want to try them again. But the more I think about it, the more I think I should sell them.

5) Shine of the Silver Dragon: A Branches Book (Dragon Masters 11) We had preordered Dragon Masters book 13, and it was suppose to arrive on April 30th. Well it landed up coming two weeks early! So we decided to binge read the rest of the books, so we could finish book 13 before it’s release date.

6)Treasure of the Gold Dragon: A Branches Book (Dragon Masters 12)

7) Eye of the Earthquake Dragon: A Branches Book (Dragon Masters 13) Now we are all caught up in the Dragon Masters series and have to wait till

8)Adventures in Flatfrost (The Kingdom of Wrenly)

8)The Witch’s Curse (The Kingdom of Wrenly)

9)Beneath the Stone Forest (The Kingdom of Wrenly)

10) The Hundred Dresses(Bookshark Level K Book): Wow! I really feel all children should have this book read to them. If you are looking for a book to help explain bullying, this is the book to do it. Even though it was written 60+ years ago, and the main characters are girls, this books is relatable to modern day life and to boys as well.

11) Let the Games Begin! (The Kingdom of Wrenly Book 7)

12) The Secret World of Mermaids (The Kingdom of Wrenly)

13) The Bard and the Beast (The Kingdom of Wrenly Book 9)

14)The Pegasus Quest (The Kingdom of Wrenly)

15) The False Fairy (The Kingdom of Wrenly)

16) The Sorcerer’s Shadow (The Kingdom of Wrenly)

Picture Books

Easter theme. Max and Ruby obsessed

  1. The Very Busy Spider
  2. Chicka Chicka Boom Boom (Board Book)
  3. I Love You, Mouse
  4. Color Zoo Board Book
  5. Big Red Barn
  6. The Runaway Bunny
  7. Waves in the Bathtub
  8. Blue skidoos to the beach (Blue’s clues discovery series)
  9. Franklin Is Messy
  10. Pete the Cat: Rock On, Mom and Dad!
  11. Oscar, Cat-About-Town
  12. Peek-A Who?
  13. Brian Wildsmith’s Animal Colors 
  14. The Very Hungry Caterpillar
  15. Time to Sleep 
  16. Silly Little Goose!
  17. Hand, Hand, Fingers, Thumb
  18. In the Small, Small Pond
  19. A Penguin Pup for Pinkerton
  20. Max’s Chocolate Chicken (Max and Ruby)
  21. Nuts to You!
  22. Brian Wildsmith’s ABC
  23. Where Once There Was a Wood (Rise and Shine)
  24. Eating the Alphabet
  25. Have You Seen My Duckling?
  26. Mr. Brown Can Moo, Can You?
  27. Time for Bed
  28. Easter Parade
  29. What Is Easter? (Lift-The-Flap Book)
  30. Max and Ruby: Max and the Easter Bunny
  31. Llama Llama Easter Egg
  32. The Easter Egg
  33. Spot’s First Easter Board Book (Spot Lift the Flap)
  34. Max’s Easter Surprise (Max and Ruby)
  35. Jane Foster’s Easter (Jane Foster Books)
  36. Peter Rabbit: Easter Surprise (PR Baby books)
  37. Happy Easter, Mouse!
  38. My Easter Bunny!
  39. Funny Faces: Easter Parade
  40. Alphaprints: Easter Fun!
  41. Easter by Miriam Nerlove 
  42. Market Day: A Story Told with Folk Art
  43. Easter by Gail Gibbons
  44. Happy Easter Day! (Celebration Series)
  45. Happy Easter! By Liesbet Slegers 
  46. Good Night, Gorilla
  47. Goodnight Moon
  48. Alphabet City
  49. A Tale for Easter (Tasha Tudor Collection)
  50. Mini Tab: Easter
  51. Easter Surprise
  52. I Love Easter! (Noodles: Beginning Reader, Level 1)
  53. Easter Mice! (Green Light Readers Level 1)
  54. ABCs of Easter
  55. Isaac Newton and the Laws of Motion (Inventions and Discovery)
  56. Happy Easter, Davy!
  57. The Berenstain Bears and the Easter Story
  58. Ollie’s Easter Eggs (Gossie & Friends)
  59. Otter Loves Easter!
  60. Color Dance
  61. Guess How Much I Love You
  62. Minerva Louise at School
  63. Where’s Spot?
  64. Minerva Louise: The Mixed-up Hen
  65. I Went Walking
  66. In the Tall, Tall Grass
  67. The Everything Book
  68. Pete the Cat’s Train Trip (My First I Can Read)
  69. The Jacket I Wear in the Snow
  70. What’s Opposite?

What did you read with your kiddos in April?

This post contains affiliate links

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Homeschooling on a Budget: Children’s Hospital Book Market Haul

Homeschooling on a budget.

As most parents who have even looked into homeschooling, it can be EXPENSIVE! But I have discovered over the years that if you shop smart, you can get everything you need for much cheaper, some times even free.

Why We Buy Books Used When We Can First

One thing you’ll find is common books often don’t retain their value. So you may buy a chapter book for $4.99-$9.99. But then land up at a thrift store and find it for $.50, $1, or even sometimes $1.79 at more expensive thrift store like Value Village.

It literally makes me sick to pay full price for a children’s chapter book, only to see it at a garage sale for .25cents. So I try to avoid buying books new.

Why We Support The Children’s Hospital Book Market

According to their website:

“The concept of Book Market is simple. Members of the community drop off used books at our various outlets and volunteers sort, mark, pack and price books in over 65 categories that are then sold at two annual sales, April and September.

Since its inception, the Book Market has raised over $8 million in support of child health care in Manitoba.”

As a parent in Manitoba, I hope we never have to use the children’s hospital, but when the time ever comes I want it to have the best machines and resources possible to help my child.

Over the years my eldest had his tonsils and adenoids taken out, which required an overnight stay in one of the wards at the Children’s Hospital. Both boys have received speech and occupational therapy there. Not to mention a few emergency room visits when they were younger. I was always grateful that all of the machinery, supplies, and resources were always available to give my children the best possible treatment.

This month the semi annual The Children’s Hospital Book Market is running from April 25th-27th at St Vital Centre.

In September 2018 we found tons of awesome books like:

  1. Kitty Corner: Guide to Kittens
  2. The Puppy Place 31: Molly
  3. Jake (The Puppy Place 47)
  4. The Lying Postman (Jack Russell: Dog Detective)
  5. The Buried Biscuits (Jack Russell: Dog Detective)
  6. Sprite’s Secret (Pixie Tricks 1)
  7. Sporty Sprite (Pixie Tricks, No. 6)
  8. Double Trouble Dwarfs (Pixie Tricks, No. 7)
  9. The Wicked Wizard (Pixie Tricks 8)
  10. No 3 The Pet Store Sprite (Pixie Tricks, No. 3)
  11. The Greedy Gremlin (Pixie Tricks)
  12. Puppy Puzzle (Animal Ark Pets 1)
  13. Chick Challenge (Animal Ark Pets 6)
  14. Kitten Crowd (Animal Ark Pets 2)
  15. Rabbit Race (Animal Ark Pets 3)
  16. Foals in the Field (Animal Ark Series 24)
  17. Sheepdog in the Snow (Animal Ark Series 7)
  18. Hound at the Hospital (Animal Ark Series 33)
  19. Hound on the Heath (Animal Ark Hauntings 6)
  20. Terrier in the Tinsel (Animal Ark Series 34)
  21. Beagle in a Backpack (Animal Ark Holiday Treasury, No. 45)
  22. Pup at the Palace (Animal Ark Series 30)
  23. Puppy in a Puddle (Animal Ark Series 28)
  24. Husky in a Hut (Animal Ark Series 36)
  25. The Midnight Mystery (The Cul-de-Sac Kids 24)
  26. The Upside-Down Day (Cul-de-Sac Kids Book 23)
  27. Fred on the Ice Floes (Formac First Novels)
  28. Maddie in Trouble (Formac First Novels)
  29. Maddie Wants New Clothes (Formac First Novels)
  30. Fred and the Flood
  31. Will and His World
  32. Maddie Needs Her Own Life (Formac First Novels)
  33. Toby’s Best Friend (Formac First Novels)
  34. Marilou, Iguana Hunter (Formac First Novels)
  35. Disney’s Doug Chronicles: Funnie Haunted House – Book 6
  36. Ghostville Elementary 1
  37. Beware, Pirates (Canadian Flyer Adventures 1)
  38. Hoppy Easter (Little Apple)
  39. A Christmas Carol: The Junior Novel (Disney’s a Christmas Carol)
  40. Rio 2: The Junior Novel
  41. This Little Pig (Janette Oke’s Animal Friends)
  42. Christmas Around the World (Young Reading Level 1)
  43. Cam Jansen: the Mystery of the Gold Coins
  44. The Runaway Racehorse (A to Z Mysteries)
  45. Snowflake and Sparkle (Best Friends, Book 1)
  46. Skipper and Sky
  47. Lily Finds a Friend
  48. Who Killed Mr. Boddy? (Clue, Book 1)
  49. Nate the Great Goes Undercover
  50. Nate the Great and the Hungry Book Club
  51. Zoe’s Rescue Zoo: The Playful Panda
  52. Ready, Freddy! 6: Help! A Vampire’s Coming!
  53. #12 Ready, Freddy!: Stop that Hamster
  54. Ready, Freddy! 26: The Giant Swing
  55. Wild Paws: Lonely Wolf Pup
  56. Wild Paws: Cubs All Alone
  57. A Wild Paws: Bunnies in Trouble
  58. Wild Paws: Orphaned Beluga
  59. The Boy’s Book of Positive Quotations
  60. Mini Manners (Little Steps Books)
  61. Map Skills Grade 1 (Practice Makes Perfect)
  62. Canada from A to Z (Alphabasics)
  63. Gifts Kids Can Make
  64. Our Favourite Stories: Children Just Like Me Storybook

$90 total $1.40 per book

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