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Finding Time to Review

How do you find time to actually try the TOS Crew review materials with your kids in order to write a review? This was a question I was asked recently, and to tell you the truth I'm having a hard time answering it. Maybe it's because I'm still a new reviewer.

I guess the simplest answer is, I put our current program on hold for the time I'm reviewing a product.

For instance with Mathematical Reasoning, I had Caleb stop Math-U-See for the time being. Caleb, was and is almost done with Math-U-See, so I didn't get that 'behind' feeling with him. He has done well with Epsilon. He really enjoyed, {as much a child can enjoy math ;) } the change from his regular program and I think the colorfulness of it helped out too.

Another item was God's Great Covenant, again, I set aside our current Bible study which happened to be part of the Heart of Dakota program. As much as I enjoyed God's Great Covenant, I had to stop using it once the review period ended.

Currently, I'm reviewing enVisionMATH 4 with Ethan. Like Caleb, he is almost done with his current math program. Ethan, doesn't have as many subjects as the other children, so he has been doing both math programs. enVisionMath 4 daily and his current math three times a week.

I guess one of the hardest parts of reviewing is knowing that I can't continue using every, single, item. I don't want my readers to come to the conclusion that, "Oh, Linda didn't care for it because she didn't continue using it". When, in reality many of the products so far I have really liked. There will be the few that don't fit my teaching style like the Judah Bible Curriculum. I loved it, but those of you who read my blog regularly know that I need much hand holding and a good schedule. This program I could absolutely see my sister Cynthia use.

With WriteShop Jr D, once our new school year starts, we'll most likely have to stop using it, because Heart of Dakota is a very full curriculum and I don't see the boys keeping up if I add too much on their plate, but I really like WriteShop, so much so, I ordered level B to use with Ethan over the summer.

Then there is the commitment I made when accepting the responsibility to become part of  The Old Schoolhouse Homeschool Crew and to the companies that I accept items in exchange for my honest review as being part of the TOS Team. I have an obligation to TOS, the companies, and you all, and that is to use the products so I CAN write an honest and informed review.

Having six willing children helps to spread out the review items, although there are many on the Crew who have one or two children and are doing a fine job =)

Lastly, just being able to be flexible. I have my core program Heart of Dakota that I plan to continue and will work around it but knowing that I may have to let a certain part of it go temporarily, I'm okay with (like when using God's Great Covenant). Just getting in that mind-set before accepting the TOS Crew position has helped.

This has been a HUGE blessing, I enjoy receiving, using, learning, and writing up the reviews. I do intend to write a post about the process. From the time I receive the item to getting the review written.

Anyway, that's my short, long answer.

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