Travel Journal for Kids Free 28-page Printable Packet

Free Printable Travel Journal for Kids Post Preview: Looking for fun activities, travel games, and journaling pages for traveling with kids? This free 28-page travel journal for kids will be a great addition to your next trip! I love doing family travel. Sure, it can get expensive and sometimes it requires a lot of planning, […]

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Easy and Free Ocean Wave Word Search Printable for Kids

Free Ocean Wave Word Search Printable for Kids Post Preview: This easy word search printable is perfect for elementary-aged children to complete and color. It features words about the ocean and waves. Remember last week when I shared the free Sun Word Search Printable and said that I had a series of word searches that […]

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Summer Daily Schedule Template To Print

Summer Schedule Printables- print out and put on refrigerator to help organize your summer days!

Summer Schedule For Kids

As a classroom teacher, I like to maintain order and routine in the classroom by following a pretty regimented schedule.  This gives us predictability for the day and ensures that we accomplish everything we needed to accomplish.  For some reason, this same characteristic has not transferred over to my stay-at-home mom life.

Since I am not a morning person I am content to just “ease into the day” (as my husband likes to call it) if we don’t have anywhere we have to be. Before I can get my act together, it is nearly lunch time!   All I know is that my sanity for the summer depends on some type of schedule!

Summer Daily Schedule

I created this printable summer schedule so that it can be interchangeable for varying days.  My goal is to plan ahead the night before what our day will look like and make sure to arrange the schedule accordingly.  I have one child who thrives on routine and predictability, so I know this will be very beneficial for him without being too regimented.  🙂

Once you download the printable schedule, you can print them onto magnetic paper, or laminate your daily schedule and use magnet tape to add them to your refrigerator.

Your daily summer schedule includes: 

  • Get Dressed
  • Breakfast
  • Table Time (will vary each day:  includes handwriting, workbook pages, puzzles, learning games, play dough, etc)
  • Free Play
  • Library
  • Park
  • Swimming
  • Screen Time
  • One-on-One time (my goal is to spend at least 30 minutes a week one-on-one with each child doing something of their choice)
  • Rest time
  • Lunch
  • Chores
  • Field Trip (zoo, museums, etc)
  • Reading (independent or audio books)
  • Read aloud (me reading to them)

our summer schedule printed and laminated on the fridge

Add Your Own Summer Activities

I  included blank summer daily schedule template for you to add your own summer activities as well.  I did not, however, include dinner or any activities that come after dinner just because this time of day is already a well-established routine in our home.

30 Minute Increments

The printable includes 30-minute time increments from 8am to 5pm but also comes with blank clock faces that you can customize (which I will be using later in the summer to reinforce telling time).

Flexible Schedule

Despite how it may look, there will be a lot of flexibility in our day.  Our daily summer activities are spread out enough to allow plenty of “down time” in between.  I also asked the boys for some themes that interest them, so we will be doing some weekly activities related to their interests.

You May Also Like: Fun Things To  Learn This Summer

Summer Reading

Finally, we’re implementing a new screen time policy at our house.  The boys can early 1 minute of screen time for every minute that they read (or listen to an audio book/book read aloud).  I bought them both book timers and we’re hoping to keep track this way.

You May Also Like: Summer Reading Printables

book timers

Download your summer daily schedule template here

Do you have a summer schedule for your home??? 

Best Audiobooks For Kids This Summer

This post is sponsored by Audible.  All opinions are 100% mine.

10 Audio Books Perfect for Summer Reading

Audible Books For Kids

My husband has been a huge fan of Audible for some time now.  He drives a lot for his job, so he will often listen to an audiobook in lieu of music or the radio.  As you can imagine, he listens to a lot of books!  I have always said I don’t have time to listen to audiobooks (I barely have time to read the old-fashioned way).  Now that I have realized what a huge selection of children’s literature is available on Audible, however, audiobooks are quickly becoming a wonderful option, especially for our upcoming road trips (when the kids are ready to take a break from the DVD player).

Psst…if you aren’t already an Audible member, you can sign up for a 30-day trial and get your first audiobook for free!

My boys are definitely fond of audio dramas but we don’t listen to audiobooks all that often.  Since we have basically exhausted nearly ever Adventures in Odyssey episode known to man, it is high time to start reading listening to some of these awesome books.

Best Audiobooks For Kids

The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe

The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe  by C.S. Lewis

I love this book so much and I can’t wait to listen to it along with my children.  I have been waiting until they were a little older, but I think this is the perfect opportunity to enjoy it together.  You can’t go wrong with this amazing classic by the brilliant C.S. Lewis.

My Weird School

Miss Daisy is Crazy  by Dan Gutman

On the opposite end of the spectrum to C.S. Lewis, this book is sort of silly and ridiculous.  This is the first book in the My Weird School series by Dan Gutman.  My boys are crazy for these books…they think they are hilarious.  

Big Brother has already read several of these this summer and keeps wanting to check more out from the library.  They will be thrilled to know they are available as audiobook for kids.  

Warning:  I am not totally thrilled with all of the language in this book.  They use words such as “stupid” and “hate” (among others), which are words that we don’t allow our kids to use in our home.  But we use this as a teaching opportunity to remind our kids that just because we hear other people use these words (or read them) doesn’t give us the justification to talk that way.

If you have a reluctant reader (especially a boy), I would highly suggest letting him listen to one of these books with you and then encourage him to read the rest on his own.  I’m pretty sure the audiobook will hook him into wanting to read more.

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland

Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland  by Lewis Carroll

We have not read or listened to this audiobook yet, but it is on my list for our loooooong road trip in July.  Although we are not sure if we will be taking our boys to see the movie Alice Through the Looking Glass (I am still waiting to read some of the reviews as the previews look pretty dark), this is a great option for discussions about similarities and differences in books and movies.  Either way, however, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland is a classic that should be part of every childhood whether it is read traditionally or listened to!

Jungle Book

The Jungle Book  by Rudyard Kipling

This would be another great book/movie comparison!  This audiobook for kids is broken up into two separate “books” with lots of shorter tales in each book, making it perfect for listening to in short segments.

Mary Poppins

Mary Poppins by P.L. Travers

I am including this audiobook more for me than for anyone else.  I have never read Mary Poppins and have been wanting to read the original book ever since I saw Saving Mr. Banks a few years ago.  Yet another classic that is sure to be enjoyed by the entire family!

Boxcar Children

The Boxcar Children by Gertrude Chandler Warner

The Boxcar Children series was my favorite when I was a little girl.  I read the first three books aloud to the boys a few years ago, but I think they are now at the ages where they would be more interested and intrigued about how this set of siblings really did survive on their own.  This is definitely one I am excited for them to listen to and hoping it will pique their interest to read the subsequent books themselves.

Acts of the Apostles

Acts of the Apostles 

Our boys love listening to Bible Audio Dramas, especially before bed.  I am super excited to listen to this version.  Big Brother will be participating in something called Leadership Training for Christ (LTC) through our church this coming spring (for 3rd graders through high schoolers) and the theme for the year is Acts of the Apostles.  This will be wonderful as he prepares his heart and mind for applying the word of God into his chosen activities.

the boy who harnessed the wind

The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind  by William Kamkwamba and Bryan Mealer

This is a nonfiction audiobook about a Malawian boy who built a windmill and brought electricity to his tiny village during a drought.  I chose this Audiobook for two reasons:  it shows the hardships that others around the world face while also showing how one kid can truly make a difference.

abraham lincoln

Abraham Lincoln by Janet and Geoff Benge

This biography of Abraham Lincoln is perfect for kids showing an interest in presidents.  Lincoln’s entire life is included, with an emphasis on the character, integrity, and courage exemplified by one of the nation’s greatest presidents.


The BFG  by Roald Dahl

I bought this book to read aloud with my boys before we saw the movie!  Although this book might be a bit too scary for younger or more sensitive children it is really a wonderful and exciting book that captivates the attention of children, and even adults.

Are you a fan of Audible?

Sign up for a free 30-day trial and get your first audio book for free!  

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What Were Reading June 2019

Why hello there lovely people. It’s been so very long. For both talking to you and reading in general. 

What are you reading? 

Truthfully, I haven’t had the time to read at all. Period. We’ve had a lot of traveling, but since I was doing the driving it made it a little hard to read. Yes, audiobooks, but I don’t always do so hot with those. 

Never mind my brain has been a bit preoccupied the last few months as we readied Laurianna for her graduation. And a trip to Africa. Sigh.

Add to that getting our local pool and swim team ready for the season and it’s been truly non-stop, not sitting down, never mind picking up a book. By the time I get to bed at night, I don’t last long in my attempts at reading. 

I actually sent Laurianna a picture on Saturday of the first time I’ve been able to sit down and read. For real.  Ironically, the book is  It’s All Under Control by Jennifer Dukes Lee. So far LOVING IT!!

My 2019 Reading technically making progress, but rather slowly. lAt the moment seven of the 14 books on the list have been marked off – so there has been progress! This month ONE of the books in my pile are from my core list, one from my fiction list, and one is from my “if there’s time” pile. They look so very good!!

*all links are referral links

What the Kids are Reading

Nada. Nothing. 

Call me a crazy mom, but we are focusing on wrapping up the few things that have taken a backseat while we tried to get things ready for Laurianna to head out. 

Well, technically Laurianna is done with school, so anything she reads is all on her own time now. I am no longer responsible for her literature intake (or lack thereof). But she’s a reader, and books were definitely in her bags she took to Africa. 

Kaleb is still working on All About Reading Level 4  with me and will continue reading through the summer. We are also having him tested by a friend of ours who is a reading specialist to make sure we aren’t missing anything and can add in suggestions to help him out in his reading. 

What I Read Last Recently (and Quick Thoughts)

Here are the books I’ve read in the last few months along with a more detailed look at 

Parenting Beyond the Rules by Connie Albers – This is the book that I wish would have been around six or so years ago, BEFORE our kids were teenagers. Reading through this now, with four kids ranging in age from 12 to almost 18, I was nodding my head in agreement, especially as we learned some things the “hard way” on our parenting journey. 

Albers addresses so many various topics from building a strong foundation in your relationship with your kids to not giving into the fear that can strangle you as a parent (been there!). Her heart is encouraging parents, and that is so strongly achieved in this book. Through examples of family meetings gone completely off course and other extremely relatable examples, this book is a wealth of information for parents who are either embarking or wading through the pre-teen/teen years with their kids. 

Parenting teens is hard, but it can also be one of the most rewarding times in our lives and reap benefits for years to come. It’s the timeframe when our kids are waking up to all the possibilities that are in front of them – and we get to have a front row seat (and part) in the adventure! The best news is that it is never too late to learn from our mistakes, take a step back, and approach things in a different manner to connect with our kids. (5/5 rating)

Small Great Things by Jodi Picoult – This is one of those books that will have your brain going in so many different directions as you get sucked into the story, but also all of the societal implications behind the story. As a nurse hesitates to perform CPR on a newborn (because she was ordered not to touch him), it spirals into criminal charges that will have you truly looking into your thought processes on race, religion, privilege, and justice. Definitely a great read. (5/5 rating)

The Governess of Penwythe Hall by Sarah Ladd – normally I’m a huge fan of Sarah Ladd, but this is one of those books that just fell a bit flat and short for me. If you don’t mind reading a few spoilers, you can read my full Good Reads review, but in short I’m personally just a little bit done with heroines having to be a part of the “action” in a sense when it borders on unrealistic. (Call me crazy) (3.5/5 rating)

You can follow along with me via the Goodreads app where I share my reviews and additional thoughts. What have YOU been reading this month? 


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Homemade Granola Bar Recipe

Years ago I fiddled around with a granola bar recipe until our kids told me they loved them (and bragged they were the best ever). Considering I’m baking for a select audience, I considered that the highest praise and quit messing with a god thing.

The fact they we know what is in the recipe is an added bonus.

They disappear quickly around our home (keep in mind we have some growing teenage boys), and if you stick around our house long enough, the kids may offer you one. 

And side note – fresh and warm out of the oven, when the chocolate is all melty – well, they are pretty tasty then as well!

Homemade Granola Bars
2019-06-06 08:32:41

Serves 36
A delicious homemade alternative to granola bars – guaranteed to disappear!

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Prep Time
15 min

Cook Time
25 min

Total Time
40 min

Prep Time
15 min

Cook Time
25 min

Total Time
40 min

  1. 4 cups rolled oats {not quick oats}
  2. 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
  3. 1/2 cup flax seeds, ground
  4. 1/2 cup wheat germ
  5. 1/2 bag {6 oz.} of mini chocolate chips
  6. 1/2 cup brown sugar {or 1 cup if no sucanat is used}
  7. 1/2 cup sucanat
  8. 3/4 to 1 cup honey {depends on how sweet you like them}
  9. 2 tsp cinnamon
  10. 1 tsp salt
  11. 1 cup oil {I use a mix of coconut oil and olive oil}
  12. 2 eggs, beaten
  13. 3 tsp vanilla extract
To Make
  1. Mix all of the dry ingredients together in one bowl. Combine wet ingredients in a second bowl until eggs and other ingredients are mixed thoroughly. Add to the dry ingredients and combined.
  2. Press the mixture onto a well-greased jelly roll pan.
  3. Bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes. We like ours a little more ‘chewy’ so I baked ours for about 22 minutes.
  4. Let cool for about 10 minutes and then cut into bars. Let them finish cooling in the pan.
  5. Remove from the pan and store in an airtight container.
  1. Makes: 24 – 36 bars depending on the size of the bars you cut. I made 24 with the first batch and then cut them smaller {more like a store bought size} the next time and made 36 bars since they are very filling.
  2. The sucanat can be easily omitted and a different sugar can be used based on your personal preferences. To omit wheat germ or flax seeds, sub equal amounts of flour.
By Jolanthe Erb
Homeschool Creations

We’ve had friends over the years tell us they have subbed applesauce for the oil with fabulous results, so have fun fiddling with this recipe as well. We personally prefer using the mini chocolate chips (they are the best chocolate chips to use in any situation because you technically get more chocolate per bite – wink). 

In a bit I’ll be sharing some other favorite “fill up the kids” recipes, because having bottomless pits of boys (and girls) in the house means I need to stock up quite frequently!

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June Science Calendar 2019

June Science Calendar

Each month here at The Homeschool Scientist, you will find a new FREE Science Calendar you can download and use in your homeschool or classroom. Each day on the calendar contains a link to a fun science activity or fascinating science information that your students will love digging into.

Many use the science calendar as a fun kick-start to the school day. Others use it as a reward for getting school work completed. If you are taking a summer break, the science calendar makes a fantastic boredom buster and a great way to sneak in some learning. 

June Science Calendar

So, what’s in this month’s science calendar?

June means the official start of summer, but it’s also National Dairy Month, Get Outdoors Month, and National Candy Month. You can bet we found some fun ways to celebrate these with science and included the links in this month’s calendar!

Download the June calendar and you will also learn about:

Download Your FREE Science Calendar!

The June Science Calendar is FREE for our email subscribers! Just enter your info in the box below to subscribe and we’ll send a download link for the calendar asap! As a subscriber, you won’t get spammed or put on any other list. What you will get is updates when new posts are published, subscriber-only freebies, and alerts to deals and resources I think you will love!

If you are already a subscriber, simply fill out the form to claim your download. You won’t be added twice.


June Science Calendar 2019


Fourth Of July STEM Activities

fourth of july stem activities

Fireworks, parades, flags, cook-outs, family, and friends. I love the 4th of July!!

Growing up, my family always had a huge cookout with other families and then we would all go watch our town’s fireworks display. Back in the day, the big treat for the young kids was sparklers, while the older kids shot bottle rockets and the occasional roman candle. So much fun!! But….

What were our parent’s thinking???

We all, remarkably, made it through childhood with all our fingers and minimal sparkler scarring, but thinking about it now as a parent makes me cringe.

I still love Fourth of July. We still have cook-outs and go see fireworks. However, I try to find safer activities for the kids, but ones that they will remember as fondly as I do those darn sparklers. In my search for fun stuff this year, I ran across a bunch of fourth Of July STEM activities! Perfect!

Here are my top 10…..

Fourth Of July STEM Activities 

4th of July Straw Rockets

Declaration Of Independence map math activity 

4th Of July Skittles Experiment

Fireworks In A Jar

Milk Fireworks

Independence Day Building Structures STEM Activities

Film Canister Rocket Fireworks

Star Spangled Slime

Fizzy Fireworks Painting

Red White And Blue Chemical Reactions

More Summer STEM Activities