Posted in Book Reviews, Homeschooling

#Sponsored Book Spotlight:Build Your Own Chain Reaction Machines: Paul Long


SYNOPSIS: Be inspired by the amazing artwork of renowned cartoonist, engineer, and inventor Rube Goldberg, whose wacky, imagined machines accomplished tasks by taking the most complicated route possible. In this entertaining and instructive book, mechanical engineer and educator Paul Long gives instructions for making devices using ordinary objects in ingenious ways. Create machines that flip a switch, squeeze toothpaste, dispense candy, and more.
On sale October 16. Watch an example here.

MY THOUGHTS: As our school year begins, homeschoolers are challenged to find engaging, educational and fun ways to teach STEM. Thankfully, books like this provide ample opportunities to incorporate it. Among the many ‘pros’ that this book brings are its 12 projects. That’s 12 days of STEM teaching. Our author, Paul Long, knows his machines as he is an engineer & educator. Having a background such as this provides a unique insight homeschoolers may not have had before.

A huge plus, in my opinion, is that these machines use everyday objects in their construction. Students can begin to see STEM/STEAM in the world around them. Along with the project itself, additional, topical information is provided making it easy to combine classes like Science & Art. We also have the fact that the book itself is unique. It is the only how-to book currently available on the topic.

Brick-and-mortar students will also identify with and be able to accomplish building these machines. With Science fairs and projects soon to come, it will add an additional learning component to their coursework. Books such as these are timeless and a sound investment to your home library. It is marketed to ages 10 & up, but younger students can benefit from their older counterparts’ involvement. I highly recommend it!

*Pic & Synopsis belong solely to the author/publisher.

**I received a copy in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are mine.

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Posted in Book Reviews, Homeschooling

#Sponsored Book Spotlight: Marvelous Makeable Monsters: Sam Haynor


SYNOPSIS:What can a makeable monster do? They motor, inflate, wobble, drool, soar, and one can even do push-ups. Add a pair of wings, subtract a tentacle… The best thing about these monsters is that they’re part experiment, part imagination, and 100% customizable. Author Sam Haynor draws on his experience with the San Francisco Exploratorium, Oakland Toy Lab, GoldieBlox, and designing STEAM curriculum to create projects packed with fun features.
On sale October 9.
MY THOUGHTS: There is so much to love about this book. First, its author. Sam Haynor is a STEAM curriculum builder. Who better to give homeschoolers STEA advice?! There are 21 experiments! That’s a lot of STEAM material for your classrooms. If utilized in a daily format, that’s 21 days of STEAM lessons. Plus, you could mix and match your classes. Science & art for example.
These are safe projects. Independent workers can spend their time exploring STEAM concepts while working alone. Younger kids may need a little assistance, but, they will be using independent working skills like their older counterparts. Or team up 2 students for a leadership/team building exercise. But, don’t forget the FUN!

If you aren’t a homeschooler, this book can still apply to you. There’s no reason a brick and mortar student couldn’t benefit from these projects. Perhaps with a Science Fair approaching or a rainy weekend. I applaud any project that doesn’t involve iPhones or having to take a bank loan for pieces to build it!

Sam Haynor has done a fantastic job keeping tabs on the quickly evolving STEAM system. Take advantage of the knowledge he’s acquired and invest in a book you’ll use for years to come!

US MSRP $17.99 https://www.amazon.com/Marvelous-Makeable-Monsters-Projects-Occasionally/dp/0760361010
https://www.facebook.com/QuartoKids/
*I received the aforementioned title in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are mine.
**Pics & Synopsis belong solely to the author/publisher.

Posted in Book Reviews, Homeschooling

#Sponsored Book Spotlight: Brick Building 101: Courtney Sanchez

All the buzz in educational talk is about STEAM. If you aren’t familiar it stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, Art & Math. As caregivers, we all know how children learn through play. One toy has stood the test of time, requires no wires and has endless possibilities. Of course, that would be snap-together bricks aka Legos, Duplos, etc.

My sons always thought outside the box, literally, when they had these. We may have bought them in kits (ships, castles, etc.), but my boys always made something different. For children like mine, these 20 activities are perfect.
SYNOPSIS:
Now kids can combine a love for LEGO with learning STEAM topics (science, technology, engineering, arts and math) in this awesomely fun activity book! Industrious minds will love learning to build a bunch of different stuff with these 20 step-by-step projects that range from beginner projects, such as a geoboard and DIY slime, to more challenging projects, such as a bird feeder and balloon racer. Large, full-color photos show each step along the way, with simple instructions and inspiration to extend projects and keep learning. With STEAM learning on the rise, this book is the perfect way to inspire play and interest in the topics kids need to know about!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: A stay-at-home mom of three boys, Courtney Sanchez began crafting as way to keep her children stimulated and active. Having time to sit and be creative with children, and to explore using texture, colors and (most importantly) their imagination is a great way to bond and teach at the same time. Her website, Crafts by Courtney (www.craftsbycourtney.com) explores a variety of activities and how-to kids crafts to keep children active and inspired through creative play.

If you have kids who love bricks, give this book a go. Incorporate it into your homeschool curriculum or just have a little fun!
Pic & Synopsis belong solely to the author/publisher.
I RECEIVED THE AFOREMENTONED TITLE IN EXCHANGE FOR AN HONEST REVIEW. ALL OPINIONS ARE MINE.
Brick Building 101
20 LEGO® activities to teach kids about STEAM
$14.95 / £9.99
Author: Courtney Sanchez
Format: Paperback / softback, 80 Pages
ISBN: 9781633225220
Publisher: Walter Foster Jr.
Ages: 5 to 7