Search results for

arrow

Uncategorized

A Review of the Brave Writer Arrow Guides

I felt like Tarzan.  Or Jane.  Swinging all day from tree to tree and never knowing if it was going to be enough.

Spelling.  Vocabulary.  Comprehension questions.  Grammar.  Writing.  Would my kids ever connect all of these branches?

I was leaping from workbook to workbook to cover these skills, but what was I achieving?

Language arts felt so jumpy and disconnected in our homeschool.   And I felt so tired.  I didn’t want to swing like Tarzan from topic to topic anymore, but I wasn’t sure what else to do.

So I did what any homeschool mom does.  I googled.  And I googled.  And I googled.  I knew I could find a program that would help me teach Language Arts as a cohesive set of skills for communication.  I knew I could find a guide to take us into the world language and communication.

And I was ready to drop my Tarzan rope.

A review of how the Brave Writer Arrow Guides and how they transformed our approach to Language Arts.

  Continue Reading

Brave Writer, Homeschooling, Literature

Top Ten Brave Writer Arrow Guides

I confess.

I am a paper girl trapped in a world of PDF’s.  Despite these handy electronic files,  I continue to print out most everything. And this includes my homeschool curriculum guides.

{This post contains affiliate links.  Thank you for your support of Not Before 7.}

Open my file cabinet in the basement and preview the stacks and stacks of Brave Writer Arrow guides from three full years of subscriptions.  Thirty printed guides are sitting in my files in addition to their PDF counterparts sitting on my computer.  I am not really sure why I feel the need to save the printed copy, but I do.

So as part of my procrastination file cabinet organization, I pulled out all of my Brave Writer Arrow Guides and sorted them until I found my favorite guides released in the school years that began in 2013, 2014, and 2016.  This list does NOT include any titles from the current school year (2016-2017).

brave-writer-arrow

Continue Reading

Brave Writer, Homeschooling, Literature

Using the Brave Writer Arrow Guides

{This post contains affiliate links. You can read the full disclosure here.}

This is our third year using the Brave Writer Arrow Literature Guides.  And we love them.  In fact, our family has adopted them as the core language arts program in our homeschool.

While the guides are fairly straight-forward, I know that homeschooling families love to read about how it is working in other homes.  I totally get that feeling as I feel the same way!

Using the Brave Writer Arrow Guides Continue Reading

Book Clubs, Brave Writer, Homeschooling, Literature

Full Circle Moment: Brave Writer Arrow Title Connection

If you use the Brave Writer Arrow literature guides in your homeschool, then you are going to love this one…

{This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting NotBefore7}

Right now, we are reading Cracker!: The Best Dog in Vietnam by Cynthia Kadohata.

The story follows Cracker, a German Shepherd, sent to train for battle in the Vietnam War.  Cracker is assigned to dog handler, Rick Hanski, and together they are going to “whip the world” according to Rick.

The story is well told and alternates between the dog’s and the soldier’s point of view.

Now…back up a few months with me…

In January, we read the book Love that Dog by Sharon Creech.   This delightful book is told through the journal entries of an elementary school student, Jack, who is learning poetry in school.

Jack is inspired in particular by the poet, Walter Dean Meyers, and writes him a letter.  He even gets Mr. Walter Dean Meyers to come to speak at his school!  And of course, we all become familiar with one of Mr. Walter Dean Meyers poems because of this book.

We were even inspired to write our own poems at our Party School Book Club celebration!

Now…come back to the present day with me…

Tonight, I sent my husband to the library to pick up some titles I had requested.  I used the online catalog to search for children’s books about the Vietnam War.  I wanted to learn more about it with the kids because of our read aloud title, Cracker!: Best Dog in Vietnam.

I couldn’t believe it when he came home with this one:

image1

Patrol: An American Soldier in Vietnam.  I opened it and began to flip through the pages.  The book is a long poem told through the eyes of an American soldier in Vietnam.

I glanced at the cover to see who the author was.

(Take a moment. Peek at the picture. Top left in red letters)

BAM!

Walter Dean Meyers.

I love when an unplanned moment like this one happens in our school day.  I can’t wait to read this with the kids tomorrow.

UPDATED NOTE:  I did read this with my kids today at our Poetry Tea Time.  The book is one long, free verse poem.  It is thought provoking and well written.  I did want to mention that both Cracker!: Best Dog in Vietnam and Patrol: An American Soldier in Vietnam are not necessarily books for your youngest or most sensitive readers.  They both deal with the realities of the Vietnam war and parental discretion is advised!

(NotBefore7 is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com)

 

Brave Writer, grammar, Homeschooling, Literature

Grammar Lesson using The Arrow: Love that Dog

Grammar.  The word can evoke very strong opinions.

Who knew grammar was such a hot topic?  Probably very few parents.  Unless they decided to homeschool.

And once you weed through all of the philosophies, it can be quite confusing to find the actual best fit for your family.  I know because we have tried so many options!

One teaching option that feels very natural for our homeschool is teaching grammar through literature passages.  The Brave Writer literature guides, The Arrow, have been the backbone of this process in our house.
Our family has found that teaching grammar with literature as the tool has been a great fit for our homeschool. Here is just one example of how we did it!

Continue Reading

Brave Writer, Geography, Homeschooling

Geography using Brave Writer

We are going to Learn Around the World this school year, and I am feeling inspired and a little overwhelmed with great ideas.

Most of that is due to our Learn Around the World Facebook group. The Facebook group is filled with inspiring homeschool moms who are sharing great tips and brainstorming resources.

This post was inspired when one mom began a thread with a question: Anyone pairing up Brave Writer books with the different countries?

Great question.  I decided to do a little research on the titles and sort the Brave Writer Boomerang and Arrow titles by continent and country.  They are available below and in the files section of my Facebook group as a downloadable PDF.


Explore Geography using Brave Writer. You'll find Brave Writer Arrow and Boomerang Titles organized by Geographic Location.

The following titles are used by Brave Writer for the Arrow and Boomerang Literature Guides. You can simply read them aloud to your family, or if you want to dig deeper into these titles, a literature guide for each of these books can be purchased in the Brave Writer store.

The books on this list range from a 3rd-grade level through high school. Please note that you should use your own discretion when it comes to the appropriateness of a book’s content for your family.

In addition, I recommend doing your own research to be certain that a title lines up with your educational goals for that particular country or continent.

I have listed titles that take place in a specific location or help the reader better understand the experience of someone who is from that country, even if the book takes place in a different country.

Geography Using Brave Writer

{This post contains Amazon affiliate links. You can read my full disclosure.}

North America

(USA not included as the majority of titles take place in the USA)

Anne of Green Gables – Anne’s adventures take place in Canada
Esperanza Rising – Mexico and California
What the Moon Saw – Mexico and USA
Mountains Beyond Mountains – Haiti

         

Asia

A Single Shard – Korea
Master Puppeteer – Japan
Sadako and 1000 Paper Cranes – Japan
The Big Wave – Japan
The Ghost at Takaido Inn – Japan
The Thing About Luck – Japan
Where the Mountain Meets the Moon – Chinese Folklore
Young Fu of the Upper Yangtze – China
Cracker! Best Dog in Vietnam – Vietnam (NOTE: content is about the Vietnam War)
Inside Out and Back Again – Vietnamese refugee flees to the US (Entire book written in freeverse poetry)
Same Sun Here – India (Immigrant from India in US)
I am Malala – Pakistan
Persepolis – Iran (Graphic Novel)
Sold – Nepal (NOTE: content is descriptive about Human Trafficking)
The Bronze Bow – Isreal

Europe

The Midwife’s Apprentice – Medieval England
Crispin: The Cross of Lead – England (14th century)
Shakespeare’s Scribe – England (Black Plague; Globe Theater)
The Inquisitor’s Tale – France
Echo – Germany (Three tales intertwine. One begins in Nazi Germany)
The Book Thief – Germany (Nazi Germany)
Diary of a Young Girl – Germany (Nazi Germany)
Number the Stars – Denmark (WWII)
One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich – Russia (WWII)
Endless Steppe – Russia/Siberia (family taken from Poland)

Africa

Journey to Jo’burg – South Africa
Cry, The Beloved Country – South Africa
A Long Walk to Water – Sudan
The Red Pencil – Sudan

Oceania

Kon Tiki – Polynesia

Antarctica

Mr. Poppers Penguins – takes place in the US, but a penguin is involved.

South America

Secret of the Andes – Peru

If you want to print this out as a PDF document, then you can find it in the files section of the Learn Around the World Facebook group. I’d love to have you join us.

Traveling the world through literature is just one of the many ways to study geography without leaving your home.  Happy Travels.

RELATED POSTS:
Combine the Happy PLanner with the Homeschool Planner by Pam Barnhill.Using the Brave Writer Arrow Guides in like having a trail guide through the woods of Language Arts.

Book Clubs, Brave Writer, Homeschooling, Literature

Green Ember Book Club

{This post contains affiliate links.  Read my full disclosure.}

“My place beside you, my blood for yours.  Till the Green Ember rises or the end of the world.”

The Green Ember trilogy by S. D. Smith was selected as an Arrow Book title through Brave Writer this year.  Our family began the series with the first book, The Green Ember, and we listened together on audible.

I’ll admit that it was a slow start for me but once the action and adventure kicked in, we were engaged until the exciting, cliff-hanger ending. Of course, this means that we are currently halfway through listening to the second book in the series, Ember Falls.

Three of my children participated in a book club for The Green Ember as part of our ongoing monthly Brave Writer book clubs.  This book inspired some fun book club ideas. Both the girls and the boys had a blast and I have no doubt they will remember these characters for years to come.

Food, fun, and ideas for a Green Ember Book Club.

Continue Reading