Thursday, September 17, 2020

Learning from Home with Usborne - Preschool

Many families across the country (and perhaps the world) are suddenly educating their children at home.  If you are one of these families, Usborne is here to help.  They have just added a new category called Learning from Home.  Under the umbrella of Learning from Home, you'll find a wealth of resources to help you through this journey with your kids.  As a former public school teacher, private school teacher, and a homeschool mom, my best advice for you right now is to allow yourself and your children lots of grace during these uncertain times.  Someone recently and wisely said that Home-Schooling and Crisis-Schooling are not the same thing.  You will be OK.  Your kids will be OK.  You are not going to mess this up for them.  The most important things your kids need right now are their parents loving arms, age appropriate answers to their questions, a firm foundation of faith, and a good book to read with you.  If they have these things, then the other things will eventually fall into place.

As far as books go, I've got you covered.  Of course the first book I recommend for you and your kids is the Bible.  All answers to all things are found in the Bible.  If your kids are old enough for a real complete Bible, I recommend The Illustrated Holy Bible for Kids.  The Illustrated Holy Bible for Kids is a full Bible for children.  It's not a merely a children's book containing a few summaries of a few popular Bible stories.  According to Zondervan, it is written at the 3rd grade level but is recommended for children between 4 and 8 years old.  It is written in the new NIrV version which is a variation of the NIV version for adults.  The text is simplified from the NIV version to make it easier for children to read and understand on their own.  You can read my full review of this Bible here.

If your children are younger and not quiet ready for a full version of the Bible, a good Bible story book will help you begin to instill within your child a foundation of faith that will see him or her through life's many challenges.  They are never too early to learn who God is and the reason we all need Jesus.  There are a few on the Usborne website here.  We also enjoyed Baby's First Bible - A Carry-Along Treasury by Tommy Nelson.  You can read more about that Baby's First Bible here.

Learning at Home with Usborne - Preschool
Learning from Home with Usborne - Preschool

Now we can consider other books to add to your child's learning from home library.  The following books are recommended for children at the preschool level.

Learning from Home - Preschool

123 Counting

123 Counting

Gently introduce numbers with 1 2 3 Counting, a fold-out, stand-up book, perfect for tummy time!

Series: First Focus Frieze
First Focus Frieze titles for babies are filled with panels of recognizable, high-contrast black and white images and patterns to aid visual development in the early stages. Gently introduce your babies to numbers and first words with these fold-out, stand-up books, perfect for tummy time!

Alfie and Bet's ABC

Alfie and Bet's ABC
Alfie and Bet are off on a quest to discover the letter they like the best … but they just can’t seem to agree!

With colorful characters, pop-ups on every page, a repeating panel with both upper and lowercase letters throughout and tons of alliterative enthusiasm, Maddie Frost’s Alfie and Bet's ABC is a pop-up alphabet adventure readers won’t soon forget! (And they’ll learn their letters, too!) 

Join Dotty and Dash as they race through the pages, discovering numbers galore in this colorful pop-up extravaganza!

Illustrated by Greek illustrator Sophia Toulliatou (Big Book of Colors), this book takes readers on a colorful whirlwind tour through the world of numbers, from one full moon to a hundred twinkling stars. There are number patterns, picture puzzles, and lots of extra things to spot along the way. A double gatefold at the end opens to reveal an impressive array of 100 stars.

 I Can Do It

There are five different fastenings to practice, together with step-by-step illustrated instructions, in this fabulous book designed to teach children how to tie their shoelaces, button their clothes, and more.

I Want to Be an Astronaut

What do you want to be when you grow up? These oversized board books for our littlest learners perfectly illustrate that the possibilities are endless!

What do you want to be when you grow up? A deep-sea diver? A stuntman? An astronaut? When you grow up, you can be anything you want to be!

Series: I Want to be…
What do you want to be when you grow up? A dog walker? A deep-sea diver? A stuntman? An astronaut? A vet? A lion tamer? When you grow up, you can be anything you want to be!

Why Do Tigers Have Stipes

Lift the Flap First Questions and Answers

A playful, informative look at why animals (and a few plants) are the way they are and do what they do, broken into 5 topics - camouflage, food storage, protection, movement, construction - plus a general spread. Quirky scenes, simple text, and friendly flaps answer lots of pressing questions.

Series: Lift-the-Flap First Questions and Answers
These stylish, highly illustrated, interactive books are perfect for sharing with young children, and they introduce science concepts using a friendly lift-the-flap format.

Learning from Home with Usborne - Lift the Flap Numbers
Lift the Flap Numbers

With over 90 flaps to lift, this charming book helps children learn about numbers in a fun way. There are counting, matching, ordering, sequencing and adding activities, and lots for pre-readers to talk about too.

Series: Lift-the-Flap Series
Each page has an illustrated scene full of things to spot and talk about, even for pre-readers.

Little Children's Coloring Book
Little Children's Coloring Book

A bright and friendly first coloring book for little ones, with simple objects to color on every page. The backgrounds are already colored in, so little children can focus on the exciting parts.

Series: Little Children's Art Books
Introduce little ones to drawing and coloring with these charming activity books. Children can learn how to draw squiggles and wiggles, spots and stripes, and color simple objects on every page.

Learning from Home with Usborne - Little Children's Drawing Book
Learning at Home with Usborne - Little Children's Drawing Book

Introduce little ones to drawing and pen control with this charming activity book. Children can learn how to draw squiggles, wiggles, spots, stripes, curly lines, straight lines, and lots more, with the help of the friendly animal characters throughout the book.

Series: Little Children's Art Books

Little Lift and Look Under the Sea

Follow a little turtle as it explores a coral reef and discover all kinds of sweet creatures that live under the sea. Meet a sleepy shark, a big octopus, some colorful seahorses, and much more.

Series: Little Lift and Look Board Books
This series is perfect for younger children and babies, with chunky gate-fold flaps and peek -throughs for little hands to discover. 
Learning at Home with Usborne - Little Stickers Jungle
Learning at Home with Usborne - Little Stickers Jungle

 Add stickers to bring the rainforest scenes to life. Fill the branches with bright bugs, brilliant birds, swinging monkeys, and lazing tigers, while leopards prowl, elephants parade, and crocodiles lurk in the undergrowth, pools, and creeks below. This book is ideal for keeping children entertained on weekends, on journeys, or during summer vacation.

Series: Little Sticker Books
Add a little bit of fun to each scene with lots of reusable stickers. You can create your own scenes again
and again in these charming sticker books! 
Nibbles Numbers - Preschool
Nibbles:  Numbers - Preschool

 Look out! Nibbles the book monster has munched his way through this book of numbers! Count along with him as he chomps his way from one to ten… but wherever will he go next? 
Nibbles the Book Monster Magnetic Calendar
Nibbles:  The Book Monster - Magnetic Calendar

Learn about the days, months and weather, and laugh along with everyone’s favorite book-eating monster! Includes over 40 magnetic pieces on a quirky background.  

Wind Up Plane Book
Wind-Up Plane Book

Wind up the plane and watch it whiz around the tracks in this delightful interactive book.

Series: Wind-Up Books
Read the stories, then wind up the vehicle and watch it whiz around the different tracks. 
WARNING - CHOKING HAZARD:  This book contains small parts.  It is not recommended for children under the age of three years.   

All You Need to Know Before You Start School Activity Book
All You Need to Know Before You Start School Activity Book

This delightful book is the perfect way for little ones to improve spoken language skills before they start school. Each page is filled with words to learn, covering everything from shapes, colors, and numbers to animals, weather, and classroom objects. A friendly book for adults and children to share, read, and talk about together.

Series: Wipe-Clean Activity Books
The wipe-clean pages provide lots of opportunities to practice as children can return to activities again and again. A fun and engaging way for young children to learn and develop essential skills.
Learning at Home with Usborne - Preschool - Pinterest

Wednesday, September 16, 2020

Answers in Genesis Announces Truth Traveler, Their New Virtual Reality Experience

Truth Traveler, a Virtual Reality Experience
Truth Traveler, A Virtual Reality Experience

Truth Traveler, A Virtual Reality Experience at the Ark Encounter

Have you ever wished you could go back in time?  I have.  I love history.  When I'm reading about historical events, I often wish I could be there to personally experience them.  I would love to have personally watched and listened as Abraham Lincoln delivered the Gettysburg Address or walk the streets of various cities to experience the celebrations following the end of WWII.  When I read the Bible, I often wish I could have been there to personally speak with Biblical characters or watch certain events take place.  Today, we can virtually experience some things due to the advances in virtual reality technology.  Several months back, my husband brought home a set of virtual reality goggles similar to the ones in the photo above.  When I put them on, I was quiet surprised!  I was walking by a virtual river.  It felt so real that I began to walk toward the water to wade.  Haha!  My husband stopped me before I fell over the coffee table in front of me.  It was an amazing experience.  Well, the awesome people at the Ark Encounter museum have announced Truth Traveler.  Truth Traveler is their new virtual reality experience.  

Truth Traveler Virtual Reality Experience
Image Credit:  Answers in Genesis

Visitors to the Ark Encounter who choose to experience Truth Traveler will enjoy today's most advanced technology as they sit in interactive seats and wear virtual reality glasses.  Truth Traveler will take you back 4300 years to the time of Noah.  You'll see Noah building the Ark and watch the animals coming to it.  You'll virtually experience flood waters but don't worry.  You'll survive.  :)  The seats move backward, forward, and sideways.  The combination of moving seats and virtual reality glasses is sure to give you quiet a rides as you time travel back to the Biblical days of Noah's Ark.  I can't wait for my chance to go!

Enjoy the following trailer featuring the Truth Traveler experience.

If you are just learning about the Ark Encounter Museum, you might be interested in reading my post about our experience there a few years ago.  You'll want to check out the Creation Museum while you are there.  My family has visited both museums but the great folks at Answers in Genesis are always adding more to experience so we will be going back from time to time to check out the new attractions.   I most certainly want to check out Truth Traveler and when I do, I'll be sure to come back to tell you about my personal experience.

If you have already experienced Truth Traveler, we would love to hear from you.  In the comments, tell us about your experience!  

I first learned about the Truth Traveler experience when I read about it in my Answers Insider magazine.  

Answers Insider Magazine
Answers Insider Magazine from Answers in Genesis

When you visit the Answers in Genesis website.  Be sure to sign up for one of their many magazine options.  Choose to get magazines in the mail, in your email inbox, or both.

Help spread the news about this awesome new virtual reality experience!


Truth Traveler Pinterest
Pin this image and help spread the news about Truth Traveler!

Sunday, August 30, 2020

Psalm 19: Glorifying God in Every Situation (Summer Playlist Series)

Glorifying God in Every Situation
Glorifying God in Every Situation

As part of our Summer Playlist Series, our associate pastor delivered a sermon about glorifying God in every experience.  His text was Psalm 19, a Psalm of David.

The heavens are telling of the glory of God;
And their expanse is declaring the work of His hands.
Day to day pours forth speech,
And night to night reveals knowledge.
There is no speech, nor are there words;
Their voice is not heard.
Their line has gone out through all the earth,
And their utterances to the end of the world.
In them He has placed a tent for the sun,
Which is as a bridegroom coming out of his chamber;
It rejoices as a strong man to run his course.
Its rising is from one end of the heavens,
And its circuit to the other end of them;
And there is nothing hidden from its heat.
The law of the Lord is perfect, restoring the soul;
The testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple.
The precepts of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart;
The commandment of the Lord is pure, enlightening the eyes.
The fear of the Lord is clean, enduring forever;
The judgments of the Lord are true; they are righteous altogether.
10 They are more desirable than gold, yes, than much fine gold;
Sweeter also than honey and the drippings of the honeycomb.
11 Moreover, by them Your servant is warned;
In keeping them there is great reward.
12 Who can discern his errors? Acquit me of hidden faults.
13 Also keep back Your servant from presumptuous sins;
Let them not rule over me;
Then I will be blameless,
And I shall be acquitted of great transgression.
14 Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart
Be acceptable in Your sight,
O Lord, my rock and my Redeemer. - Psalm 19

You are invited to watch, listen, and worship with us here.

 Glorifying God in Every Situation

When we have something wonderful to celebrate, we want the whole world to know about it.  Maybe you are celebrating the birth of a child, a new relationship, an award at work, a big birthday, etc.  When we celebrate milestones, it's difficult to keep the good news to ourselves.

David wasn't always positive in his psalms, but in Psalm 19, David expresses joy in knowing God and in being known by God. 

We can glorify God in EVERY experience, good or bad.

Creation proclaims God's power.

God's power is seen when we look at the heavens and the skies.  Creation never stops pointing to its creator.  Creation was meant to glorify God.  Creation doesn't use words yet it proclaims the power of the God who created it.

We know there is a God because of His creation and works.

For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse.  Romans 1:20

We know God and His power when we see His creation.  Just look at it.  

Creation worships God.  God doesn't NEED us to worship Him so why did He create us?  He created us for relationship.  God doesn't need us.  He WANTS us.  Isn't that amazing?  

You are not an accident.  God is powerful enough to sustain creation.  He is powerful enough to sustain you.  

Scripture reveals God's perfection.

We can know God through His creation but we can also know Him through His Word.  David describes God's Word as:


God's Word is a direct reflection of who God is.

God is perfect, blameless, sure, firm faithful, unchanging, right, correct, level, pure, undefiled, clean, true, and righteous.

David describes God's Word as more precious than anything else.  It is by God's Word that we are warned of sin and the dangers of it.  God's Word is an instruction manual about how to live and how to know God.

A perfect God can be trusted.  His Word is true and we can trust it.

Do you want to know God?  Then read His Word.

God is personal.

God is more than the God of creation or the author of the Bible.  God is personal.  

 God knows you and He wants you to know Him.

Our joy isn't dependent upon our circumstances.  Our joy comes from knowing God and glorifying Him in every situation.

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Glorifying God in Every Situation
Glorifying God in Every Situation


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