Friday, March 25, 2011

Review and Giveaway: The Crossmaker DVD

UPDATE: This giveaway is now closed. Congratulations to the winner, Sarah! I used to select the winner.
About The Crossmaker DVD (Ages: Story 3+ Art Lesson 6+)
THE EASTER STORY: Dominic, the son of a carpenter, finds himself drawn into the unforgettable trial of the man called Jesus. Share in this amazing adventure that takes Dominic from Christ's crucifixion to a place of redemption, and a face-to-face meeting with the risen Christ.

See The Light chalk artist Gloria Kohlmann draws her stunning interpretation of the Easter story.

This DVD includes three art lessons:
1. GLORY! See The Light artist Heidi Shorts teaches on the art of Creative Lettering
2. HE IS NOT HERE! HE IS RISEN! See The Light Art Club Master Teacher Pat Knepley leads budding young artists in a step-by-step drawing lessons using chalk pastels. Plus, create your own black light reveal!
3. THREE CROSSES ON A HILL. See The Light's Jim Pence gives a tutorial in water colors as young artists discover The Joy of Art

* REVEL in original contemporary music performed by "Breathing Room" recording artists Jan Roper and Kevin Dukes while watching Gloria Kohlmann draw her remarkable art expression of the Easter Story.
* WATCH and HEAR the plan of salvation, clearly and creatively presented as you have never seen it.
* HEAR See The Light chalk artist Glory Kohlmann's commentary as you watch the Easter scene being created.
* MEET the See The Light team.

Easter (I like to call it, "Resurrection Day") is approaching. I was thankful for an opportunity to review The Crossmaker, a unique DVD that explores the resurrection account through interactive art. A grandfather told his grandchildren about a crossmaker named Dominic. Dominic witnessed Christ's death on the cross made by his hands and felt so ashamed and sad but an encounter with the risen Christ changed everything. We enjoyed the story; however, the camera movement is shaky and takes away from the flow of the story. The chalk drawings that are used to depict the story are well done. I love the three art lessons taught by 3 different art teachers. They demonstrate and explain very well. It's easy to follow their step by step instructions. There's a cool surprise for you to see in each art work. I also enjoyed watching Gloria Kohlmann draw an Easter picture with chalk while listening to beautiful worship music performed by Breathing Room (Jan Roper and Kevin Dukes). Very soothing and inspiring! You can also hear Gloria's commentary as you watch her creating that spectacular Easter scene. She made it look so easy and fun :). Another great bonus feature is a presentation of salvation using art. It's clear and simple for kids to understand. I'm quite impressed with See The Light. I really like their motto ("Drawing children to Him"). They make art enjoyable, doable, and Biblically relevant. I'm not good at art so this is great for me to use in our homeschool :). Check out The Crossmaker DVD, 150 minutes of wonderful Resurrection content, perfect for celebrating Easter with your kids in a creative way!

Website: (“SEE THE LIGHT” Curriculum is being offered for free for a limited time!)

GIVEAWAY: You can win a copy of this DVD. 
To Enter : Please leave a comment sharing a Bible verse or a quote about Jesus's Resurrection or letting me know which art curriculum you/your kids like and why. Please also make sure to leave your email address or your blog address so that I will be able to contact you if you're chosen as a winner (randomly). This giveaway is open only to US residents.

Deadline: April 15, 2011 at midnight (Pacific time)

For Extra Entries: 1. "Like" SeeTheLight Facebook page.
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                               3. Rate my daughter's review of Radical here, then come back to let me know you've done so (you don't need to tell me what rating you give her).
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“Disclosure of Material Connection: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Saturday, March 19, 2011

G Is For German

Guten tag (goo ten tawk)

We are participating in the Christian Home School Hub's Passport to the World journey. This week, we're exploring Germany. Below are some interesting facts we've learned about Germany and some useful links that different homeschool families share at .

Some Interesting Facts:
- On a German Autobahn (superhighway), there is no speed limit.
- The country's full name is the Federal Republic of Germany.
- Germany shares borders with nine other countries and has coasts on the North and Baltic Seas.
- In 1961, the East Germans (communists) built a concrete wall 13 feet high to prevent East Berliners from leaving for West Germany. The wall has been knocked down in 1990; West Germany and East Germany were reunited after 40 years of separation.
- Albert Einstein and the brothers Jakob & Wilhelm Grimm taught at Humboldt Universtiy.
- Germany consists of 16 states, or Lander. The biggest state is Bavaria which was a separate kingdom until 1918.
- The Oktoberfest is Munich's famous beer festival. It 16 days, ending on the first Sunday in October.
- The Bavarian Motor Works, maker of BMW cars, is located in Munich, Germany's third largest city.
- Stuttgart, in the region called Swabia, is the home of Porsche and Mercedes-Benz cars. Mercedes-Benz is the world's oldest car factory. The first Mercedes was built in 1901.
- Ludwig van Beethoven was born in Bonn. His house is now a museum.
- The world's biggest inland port is at Duisburg, a steelmaking city on the Ruhr River.
- Pigeon racing is a favorite pastime in the Ruhrgebiet.
- Wolfsburg is the home of Volkswagen. The factory started here in the 1930s.
- German's famous sausages, known as Wursts, are made with pork.
- Some famous Germans include Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (playwright, 1749-1832), Thomas Mann (novelist, 1875-1955), Johann Sebastian Bach (composer, 1685-1750), Ludwig van Beethoven (composer, ), and Richard Wagner (composer, 1813-1883).

Some Useful Links:

German belongs to the group of languages known as Germanic. Throughout Germany, people speak Hochdeutsch (Standard German) as well as local dialects. Written German is the same everywhere, based on the language used by Martin Luther when he translated the Bible in the 16th century.

Some Useful Words and Phrases:
Guten Morgen = Good morning
Auf Wiedersehen = Good-bye
Bitte = Please
Danke = Thank you
Wie geht es Ihnen? = How are you?
Danke, sehr gut  = Very well, thank you.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Review: The Ultimate DVD Read and Share Bible Volume Two

Product Details

Format: Hardcover w/DVD
Trim Size: 6.80 x 8.10 x 0.90
Retail Price: $19.99
   ISBN-13: 9781400316144
   Page Count: 214
   Publisher: Tommy Nelson

This children's book contains more than 100 best-loved Bible stories. The stories are based on the International Children’s Bible and retold by Gwen Ellis. The pictures are illustrated by Steve Smallman. It also includes 2 DVDs. This Volume Two covers many favorites from both the Old Testament and the New Testament such as Joseph, Moses, Balaam, The Promised Land, Solomon, Elijah and Elisha, Joash, Hezekiah, Job, Isaiah, Daniel, Jonah, Jesus' Life, Jesus' Death and Resurrection, the Holy Spirit, Peter, and lots more.

My boys (even though they are older than targeted readers for this book) enjoyed listening to me read these familiar Bible stories and looking at the lively, colorful illustrations. Each story is short which is perfect for young children's attention span. At the end of each story, there are insightful comments and/or questions for discussion. I also like the fact that all the stories include Bible references so that we can look them up in the Bible for further details. The DVDs are really good for reinforcing what we read in the book. If you want to share God's Word with young children in a fun, interesting, exciting way, check out this book & DVD combination. Appropriate for ages 4-8.

~ I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze® book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

F Is For French

We are participating in the Christian Home School Hub's Passport to the World journey. This week, we're exploring France. French is a beautiful language. I studied French for 2 years in high school. I even translated one book from French into Thai :). Now I can only remember a handful of French words/phrases. Below are some interesting facts we've learned about France and some useful links that different homeschool families share at .

Bienvenue A la France! = Welcome to France!

Some Interesting Facts:
  •  The French flag is called le tricolore (blue, red, & white). Red and blue are the colors of Paris and white was once the color of French royalty.
  • The French national anthem is called La Marseillaise, composed by a soldier named Claude-Joseph Rouget De Lisle as a marching song for the revolutionary army in 1792.
  • In France, you drive on the right hand side of the street and cars have steering wheels on the left just like us here in U.S.
  • The Eiffel Tower was built for the Paris Exposition of 1889 and contains 9,700 tons of iron. It's 1,000 feet high.
  • Mont Blanc is the highest mountain in the Alps, at 15,781 feet.
  • The first winter Olympics were held in Chamonix in 1924.
  • Children have a day off school on Wednesday.
  • In France, there are 2 kinds of police: Les gendarmes who work in the country and les agents de police who work in the town. 
  • Grasse in southern France is the center of the perfume industry.
  • France is the 4th biggest car producer in the world, next to the United States, Japan, and Germany.
  • Boules or pe'tanque is the national game of France. The object of the game is to toss or roll the boules (metal balls) as close to the jack ball as possible. The kids and I actually saw this game played on The Cosby Show :).
  • The famous bicycle race, Tour de France, follows a 2,975-mile course through France each summer.
  • Bastille Day on July 14 is a national holiday in France. It is the anniversary of the storming of the Bastille prision in Paris in 1789 which marked the beginning of the French Revolution.
  • People in France do not usually give gifts on Christmas Day but instead give them on St. Nicholas's Day (Dec. 6) or on la Fete des Rois (Jan. 6).
  • Some famous French artists include Eugene Delacroix (1799-1863), Honore Daumier (1808-1879), Edouard Manet (1832-1883), Edgar Degas (1834-1917), Claude Monet (1840-1926), Auguste Rodin (1840-1917), Pierre-Auguste Renoir (1841-1919), Henri Rousseau (1844-1910), Paul Gauguin (1848-1903).
  • Victor Hugo (1802-1885), a famous French writer, wrote poems, novels, and plays. The Hunchback of Notre Dame and Les Miserables are his two most famous novels.
Some Useful Links:

Sunday, March 6, 2011

E Is For English

We are participating in the Christian Home School Hub's Passport to the World journey. This week, we're exploring Australia and the English language. We learned a lot about cool aimals in Australia such as the kangaroo, the wallaby, the koala, the wombat, the Tasmanian devil, the spiny anteater, the frill-necked lizard, the duck-billed platypus, the emu, the kookaburra, the lyrebird, and the green turtle. We also read about the Great Barrier Reef. It was fun to try speaking Strine (what Aussies speak) :). Below are some interesting facts we've learned about Australia and some useful links that different homeschool families share at .

Hello or Hullo
(He low or Ha low)

Interesting Facts:
  • The continent of Australia is the smallest, the flattest, and the driest (except for Antarctica) continent.
  • There are ten times as many jumbucks (sheep) as people.
  • Australia produces more wool than any other country (30 % of the world's entire output).
  • The largest lake, Eyre (3,600 square miles), is usually dry.
  • Australia is among the world's least densely populated countries, averaging only 5 people per square mile.
  • Its Great Barrier Reef is the world's longest at 1,250 miles, more than half as long as its longest river system, the Murray-Darling (2,300 miles). More than 1,400 different kinds of fish (including more than 100 kinds of sharks) live there.
  • Australians' literacy is virtually 100 percent.
  • In Australia, voting is compulsory.
  • The Aboriginals invented the boomerang.
  • Two unique musical instruments made by Aboriginals are the didgeridoo (a long, hollow wind  instrument made of wood and painted with beautiful designs) and the bull-roarer (a long, flat piece of wood with a string attached...When you twirl the string through the air, it makes a roaring sound like an animal).
  • Australia's national sport is Australian Rules Football ("Footie"). It is a combination of soccer and rugby.
  • Almost all the world's opals are found in Australia (usually found in the outback).
  • Vegemite (a salty paste made of yeast, used to spread on bread/sandwiches) is very popular among Australians.
  • A favorite dessert in Australia is pavlova (a sweet meringue topped with fruit).
  • Australian children's fond treat is lamingtons (small sponge cakes covered with chocolate and shredded coconut).
Useful Links: