Thursday, March 29, 2012

A Season of Promise and Hope!

The season of spring is here, and we are just about to begin a very special week of celebration, discovery, and gratitude. We are able to set aside this special time to remember God's ultimate gift to us: eternity! From Palm Sunday to Ascension Day, introduce your child to the events that changed our world forever and gave us promise and HOPE.

This holiday provides the perfect opportunity to teach our children about the promise of Easter--God's promise through His son, Jesus. From meeting the disciples, to learning about Passover, studying the Last Supper, and learning about what happened at Gethsemane, your child is about to begin a fascinating exploration of the real meaning of Easter. From curiosity to wonder to understanding, your child will begin to grasp the real
Easter Promise

After Easter, continue the learning with Expedition Israel--take them on a learning adventure and virtually visit the Jordan River, the Sea of Galilee, and other biblical places where Jesus walked and talked and performed so many miracles. Help them to understand that these are real places, not just places on a map in the back of their Bibles. Israel is a beautiful country, full of history and so much more.

Another great adventure awaits with Bountiful Bread. Just the smell of this wonderful food can get the immediate attention of most people. So many fun and memorable childhood events include memories of bread making and baking. From holiday favorites (including Easter and Passover!) to daily breads, this food item dates way back to biblical times and still plays an important role in our lives.

These studies will help you engage your children like never before. Make this an unforgettable season of learning for the whole family!  Save on these memorable Download N Go Studies now through 4/7/12 - Just $4 each.

Amanda B.

P.S. I will be heading to the Midsouth Homeschool Convention in just a matter of days! Please stop by and introduce yourself--we'll be at booths 301 and 303. We'll be offering some great savings on USAB products, as well as a chance to try them out on an iPad and Kindle Fire. I'm looking forward to meeting you!

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Passover Recipes to Share

This week we've been investigating Passover and it's significance in our Easter Story.  Let’s take a look at a couple of breads made around Passover.  Why not share the Passover Story with your children, and then head to the kitchen to have some fun making one of these recipes!

Passover Iced Lemon Loaf

Passover Rolls

Yummy Matzo Rolls

Unleavened Bread

*These fantastic recipes were taken from our Bountiful Bread Download N Go.

Don't miss the great ideas and inspiration we've been sharing on our Facebook and Pinterest pages during our Easter HOPE Co-op, won't you join us?

P.S - Stay tuned for some special savings coming this week!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Easter HOPE - Tuesday Titles

Welcome to Week 2 of more great book suggestions for you and your family to enjoy during the Easter HOPE Co-op.   If you have some family Easter favorites, we'd love to have you share them!

General Interest-

Daily Life in the Time of Jesus
by Miriam F. Vamosh / Abingdon Press

What did Jesus see when he woke up each morning? What were the city streets like? What did people wear? What did they eat? In Daily Life at the Time of Jesus, Miriam Vamosh guides pilgrims of all ages on an unforgettable tour of the Holy Land 2,000 years ago. Lavish illustrations complement down-to-earth commentary on Jesus' cultural environment, as illuminated by 50 years of archaeological research.

Elementary Students -

Benjamin's Box: A Resurrection
by Melody Carlson / Zonderkidz

This tale of a child following Jesus during Biblical times to find out who He is will teach your children lessons from the Bible. What are the treasures in Benjamin's Box? Come along with Benjamin and see. Like all boys and girls, Benjamin is very, very curious. Unlike children of today, however, Benjamin lives during the days of Christ! When Jesus comes to Jerusalem, Benjamin decides to follow Him and find out who He really is. At first, he thinks Jesus is a teacher, then a king. At last, Benjamin learns the good news--news that every child (and grown-up!) will want to share. Recommended for ages 5 to 10.

Jr/Sr High Students -

The Greatest Story Ever Told
by Fulton Oursler / Random House
First published in 1949, this classic has been read by millions. Now it's back! Oursler's account of Jesus' life---the greatest life ever lived, from incarnation to resurrection---is powerfully but simply written, and set against an accurate historical background. This is an excellent, non-threatening way to introduce the Gospel to folks who aren't yet willing to tackle the New Testament.

Don't forget to stop by and visit us each day on Facebook.  We are enjoying this Easter HOPE journey together, how about you?

Amanda B.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Welcome Back to Week 2 of Easter Hope Co-op!

Welcome Back!

We hope you have enjoyed the first week on this Easter Hope Co-op journey as much as we have!  Are you ready for Week 2?

Here are some of the Learning Objectives for this week:

- Study the observation of Passover - its history and significance.


- Investigate the early ministry of Jesus, learning about the events, people, and places that were involved in this time of His life.


- Develop an understanding of Jesus' disciples and the roles that they played in His ministry.

Be sure to stopy by our Facebook and Pinterest pages this week, as we share learning tidbits from the unit, extra activities, recipes, books and more.  We have enjoyed seeing your children's creativity with the Free HOPE printables, have you gotten yours yet?


Amanda B.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Celebrating Spring's Arrival!

Spring is here! The daffodils are making pockets of yellow sunbursts on our country roads, and farmers are busy preparing fields and garden beds. After growing up in Florida where the season changes were very subtle, I appreciate the big and colorful changes. They seem to keep everyone here looking forward to the next season with anticipation.

The coming of spring also brings around softball, baseball and soccer signups. As a parent, I know just what it is like to have children who are sports-oriented, as well as those who are not into sports. I have also realized that there are seasons of interest in sports that vary for each child, just like their interests in so many other things. While they may love sports this year, next year might be a year of interest in cars or quilts or horses. Be flexible and let them explore THEIR interests. This is their childhood, never to be experienced again. Let them enjoy it.

And now, time for true confessions. I have been at it again – shopping for seeds! I can’t resist picking a few packets when I walk by those colorful displays and see all kinds of colorful flowers, vegetables and fruit, just waiting to be planted. From the local dollar stores to the grocery store and the farmers’ cooperative – I am surrounded with packages of promise, and it is beautiful. I must admit that I do miss the days when the children were small, and things like a Pizza Garden or Green Bean Teepees were so exciting. Check out our Gardens Board on Pinterest for some inspiration. Enjoy these days with your family – they will disappear before you know it.

With the approach of the season where we observe the ultimate sacrifice of our Lord and celebrate His victory over death, consider this a season of thanksgiving for the eternal gift of HOPE from the Creator. Share your thanksgiving with you family and friends and complete strangers. We are blessed, indeed.


Amanda B.
P.S. - I'm at the Southeast Homeschool Convention in Greenville, SC -  3/22 -  3/24, stop in and say hello!  It is always great fun to meet so many of you. From hearing about your own unit study adventures, to listening to stories about your children, it reminds me of a family reunion – listening, talking, sharing, and bragging, of course. You all inspire my creativity with your stories and trials. Thanks so much for taking the time to share and care.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Easter Recipes - Challah Bread

Special foods and holidays go together.  We thought you may enjoy these recipes from our Bountiful Bread Download N Go - perfect for this season!

Challah bread is a popular bread made around Easter and other special times throughout the year. It is delicious and fun to make! Would you like to try challah bread?

Here are a few recipes for you to try:

Do you have a special family bread recipe made at Easter that has been passed down, why not share it with us?
Come and visit our Facebook page during our Easter HOPE Co-op.  You can join anytime - we're sharing, encouraging and learning together, you don't want to miss it! 
 Easter Unit Study Adventure is only $6 through 3/24/12.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Tuesday Titles to Share

Tuesday Titles are back for our Easter Co-op 2012!

Some of our greatest moments are made reading to our children.  Each week during our Easter Co-op, we will showcase a couple of Easter book titles that you can share with your families.  It's time to get busy making memories!

General Interest -

by Martha Zimmerman. Published by Bethany House Publishers.

The word "holiday" means "a special day set apart for a spiritual purpose," and most of the holidays originated to affirm our faith. Through them we can communicate what we believe. Holidays invite us to participate with God's people through the centuries in historic events that have affected all of time, including the present, and prepare us for the future! They "replay" decisive religious events, reminding us of God's marvelous works.

What a wonderful reason to celebrate and give praise to God! With thoughtful planning, holidays can provide time for families to love each other, have fun together, build family memories, and truly celebrate the traditional Christian holidays.

Family Read Aloud -

Amon's Adventure: A Family Story for Easter
by Arnold Ytreeide / Kregel Publications

With short, exciting chapters, reflections for family devotions, and advice for making Lent a meaningful experience, Amon’s Adventure will help families discover anew the spiritual power of the resurrection story.

 Thirteen-year-old Amon, struggles to divide his time between his friends and his duties to family and faith. But when his father, Jotham, is falsely accused of a terrible crime, Amon willingly sacrifices his childhood ways in order to save his father’s life. Along the way, he sees the jubilant crowds that gathered on Palm Sunday, outwits the Roman soldiers that planned to kill both his father and Jesus, hears the Messiah address the angry crowds, is present during the daring betrayal of Judas Iscariot, and witnesses the ultimate sacrifice made on Good Friday.  Highly Recommended!

Elementary Reading -

My First Story of Easter 
by Tim Dowley, Roger Langton Moody Publishers

Looking for a traditional rendition of Easter story to read to your 4- to 7-year-olds? Tim Dowley's My First Story of Easter retells the biblical account in simple terms, complete with bright, cheery illustrations that are sure to put a smile on the face of the reader. This Easter, give the children in your life the best gift of all--a story that explains the reason for the season--not the Easter bunny and colored eggs, but rather Christ crucified and resurrected! Recommended for ages 4 to 7.

Be sure to visit us daily on our Facebook page as we celebrate this Easter Journey together!   Have you gotten your free HOPE printables and Lapbook pages yet?

Monday, March 19, 2012

Welcome to our Easter Co-op 2012!

Thanks so much for joining us as we begin this Easter walk to learn more about our Lord, His ministry and disciples, and the last days of His life before His crucifixion, resurrection, and ascension to heaven. We will be using the Easter Unit Study Adventure as our guide through the coming four weeks, and pray that the learning is potent and that the message of His hope is as clear as a bright new day.

 The message of Easter is the most important lesson that your children will ever learn, and I hope that the Easter study and co-op can cement this message in their hearts and minds. They need to know and understand the depth of God’s love and His ultimate sacrifice for the promise of eternity—His one and only Son.

 I carefully choose one word for the theme of each USAB Facebook co-op, and the word for the 2012 Easter co-op is HOPE! My choice comes primarily from this passage:

“But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have.”

(1 Peter 3:15, NIV)

I’m looking forward to sharing and learning in the weeks ahead, and thankful for this opportunity to help your children learn more about the hope that Jesus represents to each and every one of us.

During Week One - we will be exploring these Learning Objectives together:

Develop an understanding of who Jesus is – the Son of God, our Savior,
and much more. 

Learn about the time and places that He lived and traveled. 

Become familiar with the Old Testament prophecies that were about the

Study the years between His birth and early ministry.

See you soon,

Amanda B.

PS - Take minute to download your FREE Easter Lapbook and HOPE Printables as we begin this unforgettable journey together!

THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Fantastic Friday goes Wild!

Spring brings gusto for life with all its fascinations—God's natural world is wild!

I don't know about you, but I'm ready to open up the house and let the clean fresh air inside.  We have had some really wild weather with snow flurries, plenty of rain, and hail like we haven't had before. As tornado season touches down, our Fantastic Friday giveaway will help you expand your homeschool horizon with Twisting Tornadoes Download N Go!

Amidst spring's beautiful changes and warmer climate lurk the coiling wind and stormy weather. While most adults cringe at even the mention of "tornado," most children are naturally curious, wanting to learn all they can.

Remember a child's intrigue with the vortex created from a draining bathtub? Ever make your own tornado in a bottle? Wow! Kids just love experimenting with the formations of nature, wanting to understand the way things work!

From dust devils to "snow-nadoes," these exciting weather events will keep children learning and happily investigating the world and weather of the seasons.

Here's what one mom had to say:

“Sometimes the best cure for fear is information, and Twisting Tornadoes provides plenty of that to satisfy curious kids . . . This unit study covers the science of vortexes and the hands-on experiments to demonstrate a twister in action. It also covers the geography and vocabulary of tornadoes. Most importantly, it provides Scriptures and prayers to alleviate fears and remind children of God’s loving protection . . . My daughter is always happy to work on a lapbook to display the knowledge she’s gained—and to have something to show off to Grandma and Grandpa! We love unit studies and lapbooks at our house, and we definitely look forward to each installment of Download N Go™. We have not been disappointed yet!”
—Sara Panning, Syracuse, NY

Take a peek inside Twisting Tornadoes

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Grab your Passport, the United Kingdom is Waiting for You!

Pack up and get ready to travel with Passport Geography United Kingdom! As part of the series, this one-week unit study has been developed to provide your students with a virtual tour of the United Kingdom, covering the geography of this nation, as well as some of its history, art and literature, landmarks, and interesting people.

Designed for all ages, from early elementary through high school, each study has a basic, structured learning plan available for elementary grades (Scout Level) and one for jr./sr. high grades (Explorer Level).

Take a peek inside the Scout Level

Take a peek inside the Explorer Level

You are about to begin an adventure to the countries of the United Kingdom, taking an online journey to this fascinating part of the world. From online strolls through Buckingham Palace to riding the gigantic Eye of London, you will visit historic and unique sites and marvelous places that span the island nation that is called the United Kingdom.

On this Passport adventure, you will be visiting these places in the United Kingdom:

  •  England
  •  Scotland
  •  Northern Ireland
  •  Wales
We have included the best resources available to give you the virtual experience of traveling around the United Kingdom. You will see and hear the sights and sounds of cities and villages, people, daily life, tourist spots, and historical places, all from the comfort of home—no passport required! 
 Amanda B.
PS - Don't miss your chance at this great special price!  - $5 for either Scout or Explorer Level and $9 for the Combo Package

Why not take this quick tour, and see for yourself!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Let's take an Expedition to Ireland (the Emerald Isle!)

It’s usually the shamrocks and leprechauns that children ask about when you start talking about Ireland. Then they fall in love with the Connemara ponies and the Irish setters, the language and the people. As we head off on our expedition to learn about Ireland, we will be studying these things and having a trip to remember!

With Download N Go unit studies, you are about to begin a new kind of learning experience. Each study is one week in length, having five daily lessons with lapbook components for each day. The name, Download N Go comes from the concept that these studies are ready to use as soon as you have downloaded them. No preparation or waiting time or other expensive resources are required. A few inexpensive items are needed for the lapbook—a simple file folder, a glue stick, safety scissors, brass brads, ribbon, and crayons or markers.

Check this out -- Lapbooking Simplified, Part One:

Lapbooking Simplified - Part Two

That’s it—simple, effective, and what a way to learn!

In Expedition Ireland Download N Go, your child will learn about continents, the people and places of Ireland, the unique animals of Ireland, and even the legend of the Blarney Stone.

From developing an understanding of the Irish word “leabhar” to investigating the Giant’s Causeway, your child is about to begin a trip around the globe on a unique learning adventure. Won't you join us?


Amanda B.

Be sure to stop by our Facebook and Pinterest pages for more Spring Inspiration!

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Spring Surprises are Waiting for You!

Only one more week until the official start of Spring!

Time to smell the fresh rain and feel the warming temperatures and the blasts of March winds barreling through the neighborhood. Change is in the air, and it is an exciting change to kids of all ages. Let’s take all of their pent-up excitement and enthusiasm and put it to good use as they dive right into learning about this new season and all that it holds with Spring Surprises Download N Go!

Across many parts of the world, this new season brings the smell of the freshly turned soil, the first blossoms on the fruit trees, and tadpoles in a local pond or creek. The discoveries of change and new growth are endless in this season, and this season was made to be enjoyed.

You and your child will investigate how seasons change, what spring is all about, the life cycle of caterpillars, how seeds grow, and much more.

What reminds you that spring is on its way? Angel food cake and fresh strawberries is my reminder—my grandmother made the world’s best angel food cake. When she baked this cake, I knew that spring had arrived!   Share with us, How do you know that spring is on its way?

Blessings -

Amanda B.

PS - Have you made plans to join us for our Easter Cooperative with our Facebook Friends, starting on Monday, March 19th?  It's an unforgettable journey to the Cross - let's plan to share it together!

Monday, March 12, 2012

Put a "Spring" in your step!

Happy spring!

It's almost here, at long last. What a breath of fresh air, and all of the flowers and new green leaves are absolutely a sight for sore eyes! After spending so many years of my life in Florida, I thoroughly enjoy the change of seasons and the anticipation of the next season.

This is a good time of year to relax a bit and get outside to enjoy some real "natural" learning--walking, observing, collecting and sketching. Try to stand in the same spot every day and take a picture of a neighborhood tree as the new leaves emerge, then print them off on card stock and let the children cut them apart and make a "flip" book out of the pictures. They can watch the tree get spring leaves instantly. This is fun for kids and grownups of all ages!

To keep the March fun going as the weather warms we're offering great savings on the Expedition Ireland ($4), Passport United Kingdom ($5 for Scout or Explorer, just $9 for the Combo!), and Spring Surprises ($4) studies this week. Now is the perfect time to put a "spring" in your step with a new and exciting learning adventure!

Amanda B.

P.S. I'm getting ready to head to the Southeast Homeschool Convention next week. If you are able to attend, stop by booths 603 and 605. We'll be offering some great savings on USAB products, as well as a chance to try them out on an iPad and Kindle Fire. I'm looking forward to meeting you!

Friday, March 9, 2012

Fantastic Friday is "Thinking Green"

Spring is right around the corner...  It's time to start "thinking green"...

We have put together a special giveaway to help put a "spring" in your step- a USAB "Thinking Green" 3 Study Prize Pack -

1 Week, K-4th grade 
Now that the weather's warming, are your kids out exploring?
How many ways can you combine your child's enthusiasm for learning and exciting activities with all the delights of springtime? Begin counting with this adventure!


1 Week, K-4th grade
The Burren and Blarney Castle—Celtics and the Book of Kells—Connemara ponies and Céilí dances . . .
What do your kids know about the Emerald Isle—one of the world's most beautiful countries?


1 Week, K-12th grade 
Passport Geography includes the best resources available to give you the virtual experience of traveling around the United Kingdom.
 You will see and hear the sights and sounds of cities and villages, people, daily life, tourist spots, and historical places, all from the comfort of home–no passport required, other than your Passport series unit study!



PS - Have you RSVP'd for our Easter Facebook with Friends Cooperative yet?  It begins Monday, March 19th!

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Adventures in Bravery, Courage, and Honesty . . .Heroes for Today!

Who were your heroes when you were a child? I had all kinds of heroes--biblical heroes like Daniel, Esther, Joseph, and others, as well as more modern heroes like Daniel Boone, Neil Armstrong, Amelia Earhart, and more. They were important to me because they were real people who had lived extraordinary lives.   

While raising our children, I noticed that they didn't have the same kinds of heroes I had.  Their heroes came in plastic shell packages from the store, wearing different colored capes and not connected with anyone who had lived a life of real adventure and challenges. That bothered me, so I set out to help them discover "real" heroes.  

This new series, Heroes for Today, contains stories from long ago which I have updated for the next generation. These stories capture the imagination, while reinforcing important character traits--courage, ambition, perseverance, humility, caring for others, responsibility, faith, conviction, and more.  

Let your children meet these people, savor their stories, and learn and grow from their adventures, trials, and tribulations!

Take advantage of the special, low introductory prices -$7 each (reg. $10.95) or the Heroes collection - 5 titles for $30 (reg. $40) good through 3/13/12.

Take a peek inside - Heroes of America

Start today, helping your children discover what "hero" really means!

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Speak Up!

“Speak up!” Didn't you hear that often enough in your formative years from adults trying to encourage you to say what is on your mind and let others be aware of your ideas? I know firsthand that as a parent, it is one of the things that we encourage in our own children. As American citizens, we also need to speak up in our government and raise our opinions clearly through elections as well as other outlets. As these children of ours grow up and become adults in our communities, they need to be aware and informed of the election process, the workings of American government, and ways that they can impact the process.

When studying elections, your family can learn so much, including:

· the history of elections
· the basic structure of representative government
· the voting and election process
· participating in a campaign
· the basics of statistics and how they are used in campaigns and elections

· facts about presidents, their families, and their opponents

As this generation matures, they need to be fully aware of their own capabilities and responsibilities within the framework of our American government. This unit study can open the doors to further learning and understanding in these areas, while getting the whole family involved in elections and politics. As parents, we need to be aware of issues that affect us in our efforts. Students need to understand that they, too, will need to stay involved in the process to protect and maintain these constitutional freedoms.

Make learning about this great country a wonderful and interesting adventure. Instead of learning about elections and government from a dried up textbook, enjoy the process using real books. Discover exciting elections and unpredictable outcomes, and read biographies of various presidents and their own family lives.

Elections 2012 Unit Study Adventure offers all of this and more. Starting with the younger students, you can delve into some fun history about the Constitution and learn more about presidents such as George Washington and Abraham Lincoln. The older students can study the Constitution and its origins, and from this get a better understanding of the basic structure of our government. They can go into greater detail in their study of the election process and past and present candidates. Pursue this study on a regular basis throughout your child's education, covering different sections each time while providing a solid knowledge base in history and government, and strengthening their understanding of their rights and responsibilities.

Here are a few activities to consider when studying Elections:
1.      As you delve into the history of elections, have the students select one of the actual elections and candidates that they are interested in studying in-depth. Using the library, your home book collection, the Internet, and other resources, help them investigate the event and the people. On the Internet, you can even find each inaugural address!

2.      Issues—what issues are important to your family in the upcoming elections? Have your students determine the issues that are important to them, and explain why they are important. Consider having them interview family members about the issues that they are most concerned with during the upcoming elections. The students can summarize their findings in a written report, possibly in a family newsletter format.

3.      During election years, there are usually public sessions, debates, and "meet the candidate" get-togethers. Find out when these are scheduled and try to take your students along to watch the political process at the grassroots level.

Use this study to inform and empower the next generation! Enjoy the adventure as well as the election!

Amanda B.

PS - Don't miss out on the FREE Lapbook companion for this study!

Monday, March 5, 2012

Help them find their voice!

We want our children to know that they will have a voice in their government. Help them find their voice! 

As the next generation begins to mature and prepare to be a part of their communities, they need to understand that their vote is their voice.

The freedom to vote and choose our government representatives is a freedom that has been obtained and defended at the cost of many precious lives. Share your convictions regarding love of freedom and country with your children today.

This week we are featuring some GREAT sale prices on the Constitution Celebration Download N Go (1 week, K-4) and the Elections 2012 (4 week, K-12) studies! Capture their attention and imagination while saving, and let the learning celebration begin!

To enrich your study of the election process, we also recommend the FREE Elections 2012 Lapbook, designed to accompany this four-week study.

Be sure to stop by our Facebook and Pinterest pages this week. We are here to help, encourage and inspire you on this learning journey!


Amanda B.

P.S. Stay tuned next week for some exciting news . . . we're very close to announcing a new product line. More details coming soon!

Friday, March 2, 2012

Fantastic Friday is Looking Super!

With "Super Tuesday" next week, our Fantastic Friday giveaway will help you celebrate our country and our priviledge to vote.

We are giving away a Prize Pack with both Constitution Celebration Download N Go (1 week, K-4) and our New Elections 2012 (4 week, K-12).

The most important document written in the history of our country has to be the Constitution. In this study,your children will appreciate just how hard those now-famous men worked to create it!  Share your convictions regarding love of freedom and country with your children, and help them to understand a little more about American history, our country's origins, and our republican form of government.

Take a Peek Inside Constitution Celebration!

We the people ARE the government here in America – we elect our leaders to lead our country and represent us through our elections! By voting, we are able to express our own opinions on issues through our choices of candidates. As the next generation begins to mature and prepare to be a part of their communities, they need to understand that their vote is their voice. The freedom to vote and choose our government representatives is a freedom that has been obtained and defended at the cost of many precious lives. They need to understand the election process, the workings of American government and the impact that they can have on the process as well as the future of our country.

Take a Peek Inside Elections 2012

 Elections 2012 Lapbook!
To enrich your study of this election season, we also recommend our FREE Elections 2012 Lapbook, designed to accompany this four-week Elections 2012 Unit Study.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Welcome Guest Blogger - Louanne Mason

I found out about Amanda Bennett’s Download N Go™ studies last spring from a fellow homeschool mom. I promptly found the USAB website and Facebook  page and started to do a little research. I realized that they were going to be a perfect match for my teaching style and my wiggly 4-year-old. I decided to purchase the Sunny Seashells unit since we were going to the beach that summer.

 The unit is set up to be a five-day learning adventure. We took a lot longer than five days because my daughter was at the low end of the suggested age range for these. I wanted her to enjoy it and not feel like it was information overload. There are book suggestions for each day and video links built in. I ordered about a dozen books from the library, and we set the laptop on the table each time. Each day also has family fun suggestions and craft ideas included. There is a “shell of the day,” and my daughter liked some more than others. Each day also has a featured country of the day, and my daughter would find them on the world map and color them in. My friend from church brought a shoe box full of shells for us to use, and then when she found out how much my daughter loved them, she gave her the box full. My daughter was totally shocked, exclaiming, “MOM! Did you know that she gave me the whole box? Can you believe that?”

When we finished Sunny Seashells, my daughter said, “Mom, you are really fun to do this with. It’s like a party with you!” And at least ten times that day I heard, “I am so excited for our vacation. I want to find some shells!”

This sparked a love of unit studies in my daughter, and we moved on to Rocking Robots, Autumn Treasures, Goofy Geckos, and Valentine’s Day. We have been doing these for eight months now, and my now-5-year-old is totally involved with picking out which unit we will do next. She also gets excited to head to the library to get the next round of books for our study.

Something really cool has happened with every unit we have done. During Autumn Treasures we learned about monarch butterflies, and when leaving church that Sunday, the monarchs were on all the bushes in front of our car! I had our camera in there, and my husband was able to capture some amazing photos. I thought it was God’s gift to us to actually see them on their migration.

My daughter wanted to do the Goofy Gecko unit because she got a green anole for her fifth birthday. We love to watch him and knew that he was known as the American chameleon because he can change colors. During our gecko study we found out through one of the books that our anole is actually the smallest iguana in the world. My daughter loves to tell people that now. Our zoo has an amazing reptile exhibit, so we took a field trip there and my daughter was saying, “Hey, that guy was in our unit study,” or “There’s a giant day gecko.”

I think these units are really fantastic. I learned a lot or perhaps learned again things from when I was little. I love that it’s broken down day by day and you can do as little or as much as you want based on the age of your child. The videos and other links being built into the PDF are a huge convenience. We have also tried to do some kind of cooking project that ties into each unit, and my daughter really enjoys that part. I also think that these are not just for homeschoolers—a lot of families could use them to supplement an interest that their child has to gain more information in a fun way.

Louanne Mason
Fort Worth, Texas

Thanks Louanne for sharing your experiences with us (and your adorable pictures!).  We love hearing from families like yours and how you use USAB studies. 
If you would like to be a guest on our blog, please send an email to and let us know your ideas!