Posted in Resources

5 Days of Canadian Social Studies – High School Geography

5 Days of Canadian Social Studies

Welcome to day three of 5 Days of Canadian Social Studies! Today I share some great resources for teaching high school geography in your homeschool.

High School Geography

high school geography
Making Connections is a high school geography curriculum suitable for grade nine or ten. The 35 chapters include how to use maps, geology of Canada, culture, economics, and Canada’s global relationships.

high school geographyCanadian Geographic Biggest and Best of Canada: 1000 Facts and Figures is a great encyclopedia about Canada. It’s full of photographs, maps, and illustrations from sea to shining sea.

high school geography
Have fun reading these amazing stories about Extreme Canadian Weather with your high schooler. Includes tornadoes, droughts, ice storms, floods, and more. For ages 12 and up.

Board games are a great way to enhance your geography and history studies. Check out my article, Board Games in Your Homeschool for some ideas.

For more social studies ideas, check out day one of 5 Days of Canadian Social Studies for elementary history resources for your homeschool, day two for high school history resources, and day three for elementary geography resources.

Be sure to check out more blog series full of Canadiana at:
5 Days of Canadiana Roundup.

What are your favourite resources for teaching high school geography in your homeschool? Please let me know in the comments below!

Love, Luck &


This post contains affiliate links. If you click through and buy I make a few pennies to keep up Homeschooling in Nova Scotia. Thanks for your support!

Posted in Resources

5 Days of Canadian Social Studies – High School History

Welcome to the second day of 5 Days of Canadian Social Studies! Today I’m sharing Canadian resources for teaching high school history in your homeschool.

High School History

high school history
Canada: A People’s History is a 30 hour documentary series. The website includes episode summaries, a teacher’s guide, and a discussion forum to help you create an entire homeschool class. We borrowed the DVDs from our local library, but they are also available for purchase on the website.

high school history
Canadian History for Dummies is part of the fun but informative “for Dummies” series of books. This book can be a particularly good match for high schoolers (and parents) who think Canadian history is boring.

high school history
The Canada Year Book Historical Collection, part of the Statistics Canada website, contains information on families, economics, Canada at war, and more with tables, charts, maps, photos, and multimedia resources. A great reference for any Canadian studies or research papers.

Check out day one of 5 Days of Canadian Social Studies for elementary history resources for your homeschool.

Check out more blog series full of Canadiana at:

5 days of Canadiana Roundup

What are your favourite resources for Canadian high school history? Please let me know in the comments below!

Love, Luck &


Please note: This post contains affiliate links. If you click through and buy, I make a few bucks to keep up Homeschooling in Nova Scotia. Thanks for your support!

Posted in Homeschool Information

The SAT: How to Study for SAT Math

how to study for SAT mathMore and more Canadian universities are requesting the SAT test as one of the requirements for admission. I am delighted to have a guest blogger today, sharing how to study for the Math portion of the SAT test for your homeschooler. Be sure to check out the great links she’s included! And watch for a post next week on the writing portion of the SAT. ~ Kimberly

SAT Math problems can be tricky, and the best way to succeed on the three SAT Math sections is to 1) thoroughly review all the tested concepts, and 2) approach each Math question with a solid, step-by-step strategy. There are two types of questions on SAT Math: Multiple Choice, and Grid-ins. The multiple choice questions will always offer you 5 answer choices, 1 of which is correct. The grid-ins are formatted in exactly the same way except they don’t have any answer choices. You must arrive at a numerical answer on your own, then bubble them in on the answer sheet. Good news: the grid-ins have no wrong answer penalty, so always guess!

Here’s how to approach each SAT Math question for maximum effectiveness:

Step 1 – Write down what the questions is really asking. You may need to find 1/y, instead of y. Or you may be asked about the “ratio of lemons in a jar to limes in a jar,” but have to solve for the two parts of the ratio first. Write down the end goal before you start solving.

Step 2 – Write down any key numbers, variables, or equations provided by the question. Don’t just skim the question and start solving. Forcing yourself to slow down and process each piece of information will give your brain time to sort through it. If you see an inequality for example, you might want to draw it on a number line quickly.

Step 3 – Examine the answer choices. Are they numbers, or variables? If they are numbers, would it be easier to plug in the answer choices (or backsolve) rather than doing the algebra? We can always use the fact that 1 out of the 5 is correct to our advantage, testing each choice! If they are variables, can we pick numbers to make the question simpler? For example, we can use “2” and “5” for “x” or “a number.” You can also choose numbers for unknown values in the question-stem. For example, on percents questions, always pick 100 for the starting value! It makes the math much easier.

Step 4 – Solve, writing every step down! Once you’ve decided how you’re going to solve (doing the math, backsolving, or picking numbers), go ahead and put it into effect! Many students make errors by trying to do steps in their head, or all on their calculator. Neatly write each step out so there’s no risk of making a simple math error that would cost you an easy point you should have gotten!

Step 5 – Double-check that your answer makes sense. Before you bubble in your choice, double-check your answer against what you wrote down in Step 1. Are you really done? Make sure you didn’t accidentally stop halfway by mistake. Many SAT Math problems have “intermediate” steps, and it’s easy to lose track of where you are as you solve!

Don’t forget to review your algebra and geometry concepts (luckily, there’s no Trig on SAT Math!). You’ll also need to review some number properties – factors/multiples, odds and evens, etc. Finally, even if you see a question that you have no idea how to solve on SAT Math (there’s likely to be a few), see if you can approximate or estimate. If the answer choices are very far apart, there’s often no need to fully solve. Can you round decimals to the nearest integer to approximate, or is there 1 or 2 answer choices that don’t seem logical?

This brings us to our final SAT Math tip: if you can eliminate at least one answer choice, GUESS! You’ll get +1 for each correct answer, and -1/4 for each incorrect answer, so as long as you can confidently eliminate at least one choice, always, always guess!

Vivian Kerr is a Los Angeles-based test prep tutor, blogger, and content creator for Learnist with 7+ years experience. She offers tutoring online via Skype for all sections of the SAT, ACT, GRE, and GMAT with

Posted in Resources, Reviews

Crush it at College – Book Review

Crush it at CollegeWhy wasn’t this book around when I went to university? This was the question I kept asking myself as I read Crush It At College!

Crush It At College was written by two Nova Scotians, Tinlin Academic Advising and Consulting’s Bryan Tinlin, and Danny Zacharias, a lecturer at Acadia University. Collectively, they give useful, concise advice for everything from studying and scheduling, to homework and writing papers. I love their suggestions for helpful apps, software, and handy tools to enhance your productivity at college (I wish they existed 20 years ago, too)!

Crush It At College is a must-read for anyone heading to university or college. I have already gifted this wonderful book (Kindle version) to a young lady who was heading off to university this fall. I look forward to handing a copy to each of my children as they head off to university or college in the future! They won’t have to learn the “hard way”. What  other hints or tips will you find inside?

PART 1 – What You Need To Know
Chapter 1: The Secret to Getting Great Grades
Chapter 2: The Shocking Truth About a Bachelor of Arts Degree
Chapter 3: Five Things Students Won’t Do to Get Great Grades
Chapter 4: ‘Drop’ is not a Dirty Word – A Completely Different Perspective on Dropping College/University Courses
Chapter 5: The Low Down on Debt – How Far In The Hole Are You Willing To Go?

PART 2 – How to Crush IT
Chapter 6: Crush IT at Managing Homework Chapter 7: Crush IT By Arming Yourself With Skills Chapter 8: Crush IT By Arming Yourself With Tools Chapter 9: Crush IT at Reading
Chapter 10: Crush IT at Writing a Great Paper Chapter 11: Crush IT With Productivity
Appendix: Wiping Your Grades – What to do in the event of exceptional personal circumstances

Crush it at College on KindleCrush It At College is available in paperback for $9.99 and for Kindle/Kindle App for just $4.99. And check out the website for TAAC’s Advising Services and University 101, a Pre-university seminar.

Crush It At College is available on Amazon for $13.08 for paperback and only $2.99 on Kindle.

Ever since I read this book, I’ve been giving it out as a graduation present to every high school grad I know. I hope you love it as I much as I do!

Love, Luck &


Please note: I received an e-book copy of Crush It At College in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own. This post contains affiliate links. If you click through and buy, I make a few bucks to keep up Homeschooling in Nova Scotia. Thanks for your support!

Posted in Resources, Reviews

My Home School Grades – Review

My Home School Grades is a new web-based program created by homeschooler John Echols, along with a homeschool graduate. If you’re preparing to homeschool high school, approaching the end of high school, or even if you’re just starting out on your homeschooling journey, this is a fantastic program to keep records and design a quick and easy transcript. It is so easy to use!

My Home School Grades works on all computers & devices – it’s not platform specific. I have used it on my iPhone, iPad, PC, and a laptop. It is easy to record things on the go so you don’t forget. There is no need for a user manual, four how-to videos a few minutes each illustrate how to use the program.

Add students, classes, and activities, and you will ultimately have a great looking transcript. First add your student:
These little chalk drawings are the default images – you can easily replace them with your own children’s photos under Student settings. As you can see, it calculates the student’s GPA and displays it on the student profile, as well as on the transcript.
After you’ve added a student, add classes and lessons:
You are able to choose a published program from a drop down list that appears when you add a class – all lessons & tests appear for you – just go in and add the grade. However, not all published programs are added yet, as this is an ongoing process. You can also add your own curriculum, and use whatever lesson plan you want, or go in and remove the pre-added lessons from a published program. It is fully customizable – if you are taking a dual enrollment class or a class above or below grade level, it can be added and included on the transcript. For grading, you can choose number grades, letter grades, or even use the fraction, i.e. 23/27 correct and My Home School Grades will calculate the grade for you.
You can also add activities, for the second page of your child’s transcript.

 Choose activities from the drop-down menu, or add your own.

Everything is automatically inputted into a transcript format. You have the option to have the transcript only show high school classes, or only classes from Gr. 10 and up for instance, just click on “hide classes before” and then it calculates the GPA for only those years.Transcripts display your address. At present, it is not possible to enter Canadian provinces or postal codes. However, I was able to put my province and postal code in the City box, and it ends up printing on the transcript beautifully. For recreating prior years, just input grade, class, and end grade, and you have your record to build on from there.
Keep an eye on the My Home School Grades blog for ongoing new improvements. They will be adding reports required by state in future. In the next year, they are even planning the ability to allow access to your own online transcript for university admissions (likely for an extra charge).  You can also check out My Home School Grades on Facebook and on Twitter.
Sign up for a FREE 14-day trial, no credit card required! A lifetime subscription, which includes regular updates and access on all computers and devices is $49.99!
Love, Luck &
**I received a subscription to My Home School Grades as part of the Mosaic Reviews Team in exchange for an honest review. All opiniions are my own.**
Posted in Free Homeschooling Resources, Homeschool Information

Free Planning High School Courses eBook – until Feb 26th!

Free Planning High School Courses on Kindle I’ve chatted about Lee Binz, The Homescholar before. She and her website are a wealth of information on homeschooling high school and preparing for college/university! She has a free eBook right now through February 26th! It’s called Planning High School Courses and it’s for Kindle (but you can also get the free app for your PC, android, or Apple gadget).

Isn’t that great? Don’t miss it! While you’re at it, check out Lee Binz’ website for some fantastic articles, and don’t forget her books. I love Setting the Records Straight, which I bought & received in the mail last week, to help with my son’s high school transcript. Have you used some of Lee Binz’ resources?

Love, Luck &

Posted in Free Homeschooling Resources, Homeschool Events, Homeschool Information

Free Webinar: How to Use the Curriculum You Already Have to Inspire a Love of Learning

How to Use the Curriculum You Already Have to Inspire a Love of Learning
Wednesday August 22nd 9pm Atlantic Time (7:00 p.m. CST)

And you thought you were just buying high school curriculum for your homeschooler! Join homeschool veteran and curriculum expert Kelly Negvesky as she explains how to instill a love of learning in your children with the curriculum you already planned to use this fall.

What a great topic – I’m looking forward to this webinar especially!

How Combining High School & College will Pave the Way for Success in College and Life Beyond
Wednesday August 29th 9pm Atlantic Time (7:00 p.m. CST)

Join Dual Credit Expert Kelly Negvesky as she discusses the “how to’s” of dual credit—from high school transcripts to the methods of acquiring credit—-in 60 minutes Kelly will help you become an expert in dual credit, and give you the tools and information you need to make the right dual credit decision for your child.

To register and for more information:

Love, Luck &

Posted in Resources

How to Craft Homeschool Transcripts – Just $5 til Monday

Lee Binz, The Homescholar, has a sale going on today and tomorrow.

“Setting the Records Straight: How to Craft Homeschool Transcripts and Course Descriptions for College Admission and Scholarships” is on sale for just $5.00 US, regularly priced at $25.00.  Use coupon code NSXUU4FU on checkout!
In addition, use the coupon code 5Friday to get her Giving Gifts That Pay for College online class for just $1.00 US.  All other online classes are just $5.00 with this code.  Go to The Homescholar website to shop now!

Love, Luck &

Posted in Resources, Reviews

Everyday Education: Excellence in Literature – Review & Freebies!

Everyday Education’s Excellence in Literature: Reading and Writing Through the Classics curriculum is designed as a university/college-prep course for Grades 8-12.  I love reading and I love classic literature – I even majored in English and Drama in university.  I was thrilled to receive Excellence in Literature’s English I: Introduction to Literature in exchange for an honest review 🙂
PhotobucketThe e-book and print version both have 132 pages, and we received the e-book.  What is covered in English I?

Unit 1: Short Stories by
• Sarah Orne Jewett: A White Heron
•Edgar Allen Poe: The Purloined Letter
• Guy de Maupassant: The Diamond Necklace
• O. Henry: The Ransom of Red Chief
• Eudora Welty: A Worn Path
• James Thurber: The Secret Life of Walter Mitty
Unit 2: Jules Verne: Around the World in Eighty Days
Honours: 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea

Unit 3: Mark Twain: A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court
Honours: The Prince and the Pauper
Unit 4: Charlotte Brontë: Jane Eyre by Charlotte
Honours: Shirley or Villette

Unit 5: George Bernard Shaw’s Pygmalion
Honours: Murder in the Cathedral by T.S. Eliot

Unit 6: Robert Louis Stevenson: Treasure Island
Honours: Kidnapped
Unit 7: George Orwell: Animal Farm
Honours: 1984
Unit 8: William Shakespeare: The Tempest
Honours: A Midsummer Night’s Dream

Unit 9: Johnathan Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels
Honours: The Pilgrim’s Progress by John Bunyan

PhotobucketMy 12 year old son enjoyed reading all the classic short stories in Unit 1, and had no problem doing the assignments.  I’ve been enjoying reading along with him – from some of my favourite authors, to ones I’ve always wanted to read, to ones I’d never even heard of.  I like how the mini literary analysis/observation “papers” build up to a longer essay at the end of the unit.  The course is well set out so that the child can work along very independently. I love how I can challenge my son by opting to flesh out the curriculum with the “Honours track”. We’ll be working through the rest of Literature I over the course of this year.  We’re going to jump around a little and do the Shakespeare unit next, as The Tempest is being performed at the end of the month at the local university – how’s that for timing?!

With all the great literature out there to choose from, want to know how Janice Campbell of Everyday Education, chose the literature for Excellence in Literature?  Read her blog post: How I Chose Great Books for Excellence in Literature.  Still not sure if you and your child will like EIL? Click HERE for a FREE unit – Unit 3, focusing on Mark Twain (one of my favourite authors)! And would you like a free writing-evaluation rubric and a great twice-monthly newsletter, The Everyday Educator? Go to Everyday Education and fill out your name and email to the left for your freebies!

The print version of Excellence in Literature: English I is $29.00 US + $13.00 Shipping to Canada ($4.95 to the US).  The downloadable Ebook version is $27 and is designed to be printed double sided and put in a 3 ring binder.  OR get the entire 5-year curriculum for $139.00 US in print + shipping, or $135.00 for the e-book.

Check out the Everyday Education website for information on the full course.  Click below to see how other TOS Crew families enjoyed EIL:

Love, Luck &