Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Giveaway: National Geographic Maps!!

"One of the most beneficial learning tools that we keep on hand is a great collection of maps and globes. They decorate our hallways and basement, our closet doors and the stairwell walls. What a great dimension they have added to our children's hands-on education! Don't miss the opportunity to let them connect the wonders of the world with the geography of the planet."  ~Amanda Bennett


I am so excited about this Contest!!!

In conjunction with our Northern/Southern Hemisphere special this week, National Geographic has generously donated three US/World Political Map Bundles to be used in a DNG blog giveaway.  These maps are so so beautiful and designed especially for children. From the National Geographic website:

This is a very exciting year for National Geographic Maps, as we are launching our new series of maps designed specifically for the kids. Our new graded-series of maps are the first to address the unique needs of K-12 students as they advance their understanding of our World.

Unlike other classroom poster maps, ours utilize the Winkel-Triple projection, which provides the best combination of size, shape, and distance giving the student the best visual representation of the Earth’s surface. This solves the effect seen on other maps where Greenland appears larger than South America.

Our new maps start early elementary kids off right. Our Beginner Series, grades K-3, contains an easy to read maps of the World and United States. As kids progress, so do our maps! Our Political Series, grades 4-12, has up-to-date World and U.S. maps, increasing the detail of information for the teacher and student to utilize. Finally, our Physical Series, grades 6-12, helps advancing students understand the World’s diverse landform, Oceans, and our Nation’s terrain.

To add to the fun, for purchases, National Geographic is also offering to wave shipping charges to our U.S. customers, from now until September 20, 2010!  Those outside the U.S. will receive a 10% discount!  Check out their amazing map products.  You are sure to find many things that you'll want for your homeschool.  Of special interest to DNG families, their Beginners Series bundle. Once you’ve selected the items you’d like to purchase, contact brdouthi@natgeomaps.com via email, to receive your special discount.  Orders will be shipped via USPS Media Mail in 10-14 days. Offer expires 9/20/2010.


Now for the Contest!

To have a chance to win one of these amazing National Geographic Map Bundles, leave a comment telling us which county you dream of visiting!  Please make sure I have a way to contact you, preferably an email address.

For more chances to win, you can do any or all of the following:

  • Visit the National Geographic Maps website.  Find which cool product is a must-have for your homeschool. then come back and leave a comment telling us all about it.
  • Blog about this contest on your blog and link back to this blog contest.  Be sure to leave a separate comment with a link to your blog post.  Doing this is worth 2 entries!
  • Tweet about this contest.  Again, be sure to leave a separate comment stating your tweeted.
  • "Like" Download N Go on Facebook, leaving another comment letting us know you like us.

That's 5 ways, with a total of 6 chances, to win one of these awesome prizes!

Be sure to follow the Download N Go blog with Google Friend Connect so you won't miss the big announcement.  This contest will end at 11:59 p.m. EST on Saturday, September 4, 2010.  Three winners will be chosen by random drawing on September 9, 2010, at 12:00 noon EST. We will announce the winners here on the blog and on our Facebook page. Winners will also be notified by email, if possible.


Please note:  Employees of TOS, including independent contractors, members of the TOS Crew and DNG Review Team, are not eligible to participate in this contest.  Please read the rules for this contest here.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Be on the look-out!

We've got an awesome contest/giveaway starting tomorrow (Tuesday!).  Be sure to follow our blog on Google Friend Connect and "like" us on Facebook so you don't miss a thing!

WOW! Combining deals will save you even MORE!!

The promo code for Summer Sensations ends tomorrow, August 31.  With the code SSFBFAN, you can get this fun title for $5.  Combine that with the current Northern/Southern Hemisphere special--$3.95 for Autumn Treasures or Spring Surprises, and you have a package worth almost $24, for the low price of $12.90!  That's a savings of nearly $11!!

But hurry, the promo code on Summer Sensations expires tomorrow and the Northern/Southern Hemisphere special ends on Saturday, Sep 4!

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Whether you live in the Northern Hemisphere or the Southern Hemisphere...

...we've got you covered!

Beginning today, BOTH Autumn Treasures and Spring Surprises can be purchased and immediately downloaded for the low price of $3.95 each!! That's $4 each off the regular price!!

So, if you're living down under, where flowers are beginning to bloom, and cold winter days are turning into beautiful spring mornings, you can make it all come more alive with Spring Surprises. Purchase Spring Surprise here.

And if you're living north of the equator and looking forward to falling leaves and cooler fall nights replacing those hot summer days, then Autumn Treasures will help you usher in those much anticipated changes. Purchase Autumn Treasures here.

Or if you're like me and like to plan ahead (especially when I can save a few dollars), then grab them both and you'll be ready for those seasonal changes again in a few months!  That's a savings of $8 on both titles!

Don't delay...this special ends on Sep 4!

To round out your year, check out our other seasonal titles here.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Unit Studies: Your Questions Answered

Have you tried unit studies yet?  Why not?

Unit studies are a wonderful way to homeschool. Whether you are teaching one or ten, using unit studies will add fun, hands-on learning to your homeschool. Some of you are wondering how to go about doing that. You have lots of questions and concerns. Read on, and hopefully those issues will be answered and you can go about the business of making your homeschool more exciting than ever.

“What exactly is a unit study?”

A unit study is a method of teaching in which you choose a topic and then dig in deep to learn everything you can about it, incorporating every subject you possibly can: history, geography, science, art, music, even language arts and applied math. Instead of touching on a lot of topics and barely learning about them, you’ll be digging deep, where real learning happens. And you’re doing this with all of your children together, all learning about the same topic at their age-appropriate levels.

“I feel overwhelmed and out of my element.”

Many moms are overwhelmed with homeschooling. The last thing you need is a new twist, right? Wrong. The last thing you need is a child who equates learning with dread, drudgery, and disappointment. Don’t let your child’s boredom weigh you down-that is overwhelming. Toss the textbooks. Ditch the workbooks. Follow your child’s interest, try a unit study, and watch your child go from uninterested to enthused.

“But won’t there be gaps in their education? I feel more comfortable if my kids are learning the same things the kids in school are learning.”

In this age of information, there is no way you are going to cover everything, no matter what curriculum you use. You had gaps in your education, and so did I. If you try to cover everything, your child’s education will be a mile wide and only an inch deep. You’ll produce students who think they know everything about everything, but really don’t know much about anything.

“I’ve seen lapbooks. Are they the same as unit studies? I’m not very creative, and I don’t like messy projects!”

Lapbooks can be unit studies. They can also be a creative way to make a keepsake for more traditional unit studies. Homeschool teachers are often concerned that they won’t do the lapbook correctly. “Do I cut out the mini books or let my 7-year-old do that?” There is no wrong way to do a lapbook. Say it out loud: “There is no wrong way to do a lapbook!” And yes, expect a mess, but kids love a good mess! Though lapbooks aren’t the tidiest form of learning-scissors flying, crayons drawing, and glue sticking–they are great hands–on learning tools. Remind yourself that this season of learning will pass all too quickly!

“Planning and implementing a unit study takes too much time.”

Who has extra time to sit around and plan a unit study? The reality is that you probably don’t have the time. The good news is that you don’t have to bear the burden. You can spend as much or as little time as you want planning unit studies. Or you can just not plan them at all. Many unit studies by many different authors are out there waiting for you to discover them. You are sure to find some that will pique your child’s curiosity.

We hope you can now see all the benefits to homeschooling with unit studies. Why not add some fun, hands-on, child-led, creative, real learning to your homeschool? Your children will thank you, and you just might find yourself enjoying teaching more than before.

by Ami Brainerd and Marcy Crabtree

(published by The Old Schoolhouse®, August 12, 2010)

Sunday, August 22, 2010

We're flying high at DNG!!

In 1932, Amelia Earhart set the woman's transcontinental speed record, flying solo 2,447 miles, coast to coast, in 19 hours, 5 minutes, August 24-25.  To celebrate the amazing achievements of this record-setting aviator, we're offering a deal on our Amelia Earhart Download N Go and on an Amelia Earhart/Kite Capers DNG package!  Soar to new heights with  these delightful, memory-making units.

Amelia Earhart

Kite Capers

Here's the flight plan.  You can fly solo by purchasing Amelia Earhart at 20% off OR increase your air time and get the Amelia Earhart AND Kite Capers Fun Flight Bundle for 20% off.

Are you ready for take-off?  Because  as an added bonus, we're also taking 25% off the already discounted prices of some of our bundles!  The 38-Week, Full School Year Bundle , the Spring Semester Bundle, and the Fall Semester Bundle are all discounted!

As always, when you purchase the Full School Year Bundle, you will receive Birthday Bonanza as a bonus (this is THE only way to get Birthday Bonanza), as well as 2 more books, written by Amanda Bennett,  Unit Studies 101 and Unit Study Journal. That's a total of 39 Download N Go units, plus 2 more Amanda Bennett books for just over $140!! Wow! Now we're really flying high!

These specials will only run for 3 days, Monday, August 23 through Wednesday, August 25.   And yes, Monday does begin at 12:01am EST! So hurry and scoop up those awesome deals as soon as the clock strikes midnight!!

Fun Flight Bundle

Full School Year Bundle

Fall Semester Bundle

Spring Semester Bundle


Friday, August 20, 2010

Coming Soon: Expedition Africa

Expedition Africa will soon be released and trust me when I say, you are going to love this unit study!  It's jam-packed with enough to keep your students busy traveling around this gorgeous and amazing continent for more than a week!  From the culture and language of different countries, to native animals, there's just so much to enjoy and learn about Africa.   To give you an idea of what is to come, here's a sneak peak of a few pictures of a completed Expedition Africa lapbook (click on the pictures to enlarge):

Once it is available, you'll find Expedition Africa for purchase by following this link.  Enjoy your expedition to Africa!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Summer Sensations Blog Tour

Summer Sensations is now available as an individual purchase!  Several reviewers have been using Summer Sensations over the past few weeks, and have written reviews on their blogs.  So be sure to click around and learn more about this wonderful and exciting unit study!  And while you're visiting the blogs, be sure and look for ways to WIN a copy of Summer Sensations for your homeschool!

Here's what the Download N Go website has to say about Summer Sensations!
Turn school into . . .   cool!
Make a splash to start the new school year --

Your child will investigate how seasons change,
what summer is all about, how shadows work,
why trees are important in the summertime,
and yummy--discover some history about
snow cones and ice cream!

And it's a great time to seize many of those cool summery interests that your kids are intrigued with.

Day 1: What is Summer?
Day 2: Science Secrets of Summer
Day 3: People and Places of Summer
Day 4: Time for Tips and Treasures of Summer
Day 5: Goodies and Surprises of Summer

Exciting changes abound for kids of all ages to experience, so why not take all of their pent-up excitement and enthusiasm and put it to good use
as they dive right into learning about summer
and all that it holds?

It's time to watch the trees grow and enjoy their shade,
feel the hot temperatures, take a plunge in the water,
and enjoy a slower pace of life as summer spreads
through the neighborhood.

You can purchase Summer Sensation here!


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Hear Amanda's interview AND win Birthday Bonanza!

I know many of you would love to have Amanda Bennett sit at your kitchen table while you ask her all about what's important to her, why she writes these awesome unit studies for our children, where her heart is.  Well, here is your chance.  Well...she won't physically be at your kitchen table, but this is the next best thing!

Tricia Goyer will be interviewing Amanda on her radio show, Living Inspired,  TODAY!!!

So put those kidlets down for a nap, find a craft for the older kids to do, pour yourself a cup of tea and sit back and enjoy your time with Amanda.  You could even pour a glass of sweet tea for her and pretend she's there with you :)

Here are the details:

Date: August 19th, 2010

Time: 3-4 pm CST

Duration: 1 hour

Topic/Book: Homeschooling, story behind Amanda Bennett

Media Outlet: Living Inspired

The interview is live and will be available as a podcast and on iTunes after it airs (just in case you couldn't get that 3 yr. old down for the nap!).

During the program, Amanda will be giving away 2 copies of Birthday Bonanza!  Birthday Bonanza is usually only available as a bonus item for purchasing the entire year subscription!  You'll find directions for how to enter for the giveaway here.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

And the winner is.....


Sarah, you are the winner of our Happy Birthday, Davy Crockett contest and the $20 gift card from amazon.com

Please shoot me an email so I can get some information from you!

mcrabtree @ thehomeschoolmagazine.com

You have 48 hours to contact me, or a new winner will be chosen.  Thank you!

Monday, August 16, 2010

Happy Birthday, Davy Crockett (and a contest, too)..

Today, August 17, we at Download N Go are celebrating Davy Crockett's 224th birthday!    This past spring, we released the Davy Crockett Download N Go, and it has been a huge hit among homeschoolers.  And why not?  This amazing American hero has inspired many children to wear coonskin caps and tell tall tales about bears!  There have been songs written about him and television shows re-enacting his fascinating life.  Children are drawn to his sense of adventure and reputation for honesty and doing the right thing.

So, in honor of Davy Crockett, we'd like to give you all an opportunity to win a little prize.  Just leave a comment here on the blog with 2 facts about Davy Crockett.  The contest will run for the 24 hours of Mr. Crockett's birthday, August 17 at 12:01 am to 11:59 pm EST.  A winner will be drawn at noon on Wednesday, August 18 and announced here on the blog and on Facebook.  The prize?  A $20 Amazon.com gift card!

If you haven't already purchased the Davy Crockett Download N Go and now feel inspired to, you can find it here.  But be forewarned, you'll probably have to find a coonskin cap and Kentucky long rifle for all those at home reenactments :)

(note:  contest open to residents of the U.S. only) (note #2--TOS Crew members are not eligible)

See what others are saying about Download N Go!

"We have just started homeschooling our eldest son (10 year old).  We started over the summer with our first unit study - Download N Go Sunny Seashells. I did this with my two eldest boys (7 and 10 years).  It was great! We had so much fun.   I had researched styles and decided we wanted to try a unit study approach but I had just thought along the lines of studying one particular 'topic' a a time and incorporating different acedemic subjects.  Using the Download N Go has given me a better insight into how different unit studies are from text books.  My boys did not do a huge amount of 'book work' learning but discovered and learnt sooo much!  We live near the coast in England and spent many days on the sea shore exploring shells with such a better understanding.  We also used the unit as a base for branching out into fossil hunting too!  I absolutely loved this unit and am so excited about moving on with my son in September!!!" ~Tracy from England

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Expedition Mexico FREE until August 27!

Have you been wanting to try Download N Go unit studies, but just weren't sure they were for you?  Well, now is you chance to try one for FREE!  Expedition Mexico is now available FREE from The Old Schoolhouse's Teacher's Toolbox.

Learn more here! Hurry, it's only available until August 27.

Friday, August 13, 2010

August 17 is Davy Crockett's Birthday!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010 will be the date of Davy Crockett's 224th birthday.  It's the perfect time to celebrate this American hero with our Davy Crockett Download N Go.  Here's what the DNG website has to say about Davy Crockett:

There are heroes in history we should take to heart
and share with our children . . .This is one of them!

Davy Crockett: a pioneer, hunter, storyteller, soldier,
legislator, patriot, and legend of the Old West . . .

Let’s find out about “The King of the Wild Frontier”!

Day 1: Who Was Davy Crockett?
Day 2: People and Places in Davy Crockett’s Life
Day 3: Science Secrets of the Frontier
Day 4: Lessons to Learn From Davy Crockett
Day 5: Remembering Davy Crockett

History is skipping over a few of our heroes, and they are slowly fading away. That doesn’t have to happen when you are in charge of your homeschool!

Davy Crockett is one of those patriot heroes that you’ll want your children to know about and remember. This brave frontiersman, family man, congressman, and man of integrity loved to stand up for what he believed was right, even when that was not an easy thing to do.

“Be always sure you are right—then go ahead.”
—Davy Crockett

And as a special treat, the lapbook for Davy Crockett has been revised.  It's better than ever!

If you happen to live near East Tennessee, this Saturday, August 14,  there will be a celebration of Crockett's birthday at the Crockett Tavern Museum in Morristown!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Roller Coasters Blog Tour

We are kicking off our first DNG Blog Tour by reviewing the recently released Download N Go, Roller Coasters!  You'll find the Linky to the blogs at the bottom of this post.

Here's the description of Roller Coasters from the Download N Go website:

Wow! I'm finally tall enough to ride the roller coaster!

Investigate what makes roller coasters roll and
enjoy lots of motivating activities!

Day 1: What Is a Roller Coaster?
Day 2: The History of Roller Coasters
Day 3: People and Places of Roller Coasters
Day 4: Science Secrets of Roller Coasters/Rides
Day 5: Goodies and Gadgets of Roller Coasters

Watch and follow roller coasters speeding
around their tracks all over the globe.

Discover their secret powers and
learn about forces in motion.

What better way to learn about gravity and
Isaac Newton's first law of motion?

For a lot of kids, roller coasters are the most thrilling of theme park rides. And no wonder--all that swooping, twirling and lurching are likened to the feeling of an astronaut in space!

It’s the delight of almost every little kid!
Design and test their own roller coaster!

Here's a picture of some of the pages inside Roller Coasters.

Several of our team members have spent the past couple of weeks using Roller Coasters in their homeschools, and have written reviews on their blogs.  To read these reviews, please click on the link below!  If you wish to purchase Roller Coasters, you may do so here.

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Davy Crockett--on sale now- ONE day only!

To celebrate Davy Crockett's upcoming birthday on August 17, the Davy Crockett Download N Go is on sale, today only, 20% off!

There are heroes in history we should take to heart
and share with our children . . .This is one of them!

Davy Crockett: a pioneer, hunter, storyteller, soldier,
legislator, patriot, and legend of the Old West . . .

Let’s find out about “The King of the Wild Frontier”!

Day 1: Who Was Davy Crockett?
Day 2: People and Places in Davy Crockett’s Life
Day 3: Science Secrets of the Frontier
Day 4: Lessons to Learn From Davy Crockett
Day 5: Remembering Davy Crockett

History is skipping over a few of our heroes, and they are slowly fading away. That doesn’t have to happen when you are in charge of your homeschool!

Davy Crockett is one of those patriot heroes that you’ll want your children to know about and remember. This brave frontiersman, family man, congressman, and man of integrity loved to stand up for what he believed was right, even when that was not an easy thing to do.

“Be always sure you are right—then go ahead.”
—Davy Crockett

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Introducing the DNG Review Team!

That's right!  Download N Go now has a review team.  These 40 or so homeschool moms and dads will be using 1-2 Download N Go units a month in their homeschools and then will be sharing their experiences, thoughts, ideas, pictures, and fun on their blogs.  

They are in the midst of their first unit, Roller Coasters, right now and very soon we'll be sharing their reviews with all of you.  So stay tuned!

In the meantime, you can begin getting to know the team by checking out their blogs.  The list of bloggers can be found here. Be sure to follow their blogs (and this one!), so you won't miss a thing!

Friday, August 6, 2010

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Expedition China 50% off!

Beginning at 12:01am on August 6, as a part  of  TOS' Back to Homeschool Sale, and in celebration of lapbooking, the Download N Go unit, Expedition China, will be on sale 50% off! That's just $3.98 for this exciting unit!

Take a trip down the Yangtze River or a walk along the Great Wall, learn all about pandas and Chinese inventions, as well as God's faithful missionaries to China.  From day one, your children will be hooked and at the end of your week, mesmerized by all they have learned about this fascinating country.

This sale will last for one week, ending on August 13.  So don't wait, grab up your copy of Expedition China and enjoy the journey!

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Chocolate Challenge is now available!!

Chocolate Challenge is ready in the store! AND....for 24 hours only (beginning right now until midnight Monday, August 2!), every 20th DNG purchaser will get their choice of another Download N Go or Amanda Bennett unit study (from www.unitstudy.com) absolutely FREE!!!

AND don't forget, that you can also save 20% on every bundle purchase AND get Summer Sensations for FREE until August 15!

AND Autumn Treasures is currently 50% off!

Back to Homeschool time has never been better!  Enjoy the savings!

Newsletter subscribers, tonight's the night! :)

Watch your email, because I don't think that you will want to miss this special offer!

Amanda B.