Alicia Van Hecke

Learning Wrap-Ups: Basic Math Introductory Kit

Book cover: 'Learning Wrap-Ups: Basic Math Introductory Kit'

Kit includes 5 flash-card sets - Addition, Subtraction, Multiplication, Division and Fractions

Learning Palette Mathematics

Image of set: 'Learning Palette Mathematics'

Learning Wrap-Ups, plastic palette and colored discs with self-correcting card sets
(This review is based on use of the first and third grade sets).

An Introduction to Early Music

This is a very beautiful, if eclectic recording of Gregorian Chant, Renaissance Polyphony and some miscellaneous "popular" tunes from numerous European countries (ranging from the 11th to the 17th century). Composers include Hildegard of Bingen, William Byrd, Giovanni da Palestrina and Josquin des Prez. An enclosed booklet gives brief biographies of these and other major composers of the time. I think this is a nice place to start for those unfamiliar with early music. Everyone at our house enjoyed the recording very much.

The Adoremus Hymnal

Book cover: 'The Adoremus Hymnal'

This is a beautiful hymnal with all the favorite traditional Catholic hymns and the parts and prayers of the Mass in English and Latin. It avoids any use of "feminized" (a.k.a. inclusive) language, which has destroyed so many of the Church's beautiful hymns and even tried to remove the use of "he" or "him" when referring to Jesus. Our family has taken to pulling out this hymnal every morning after prayers and each person picking out their favorite song to sing together before beginning the school day.

Wee Sing: Around the World

Book cover: 'Wee Sing: Around the World'

This audio tape or CD and booklet take you around the world, continent by continent, by introducing you to favorite folks songs or children's songs from each country. Someone from each country introduces themselves in their own language and then in English and the song is sung in each language as well. The booklet includes all the words to the songs in the native language and English, simple piano notation and guitar chords. There are charming illustrations including each country's flag. You'll also find a little description of each country.

Music Theory Learning Wrap-Ups: Introductory Kit

Book cover: 'Music Theory Learning Wrap-Ups: Introductory Kit'

Kit includes four sets of 10 flashcards: Keys & Notes, Signs & Symbols, Rhythm & Vocabulary, Intervals & Chords

Baby Mozart

Author(s): 
Baby Einstein

It is commonly believed today that Mozart's music is so beautiful and well-ordered that it can have a beneficial effect on the brain's development in children who listen to it during their developing years. Using this theory, the Baby Einstein company have made an audio and video package meant to capitalize on these ideas. The audio CD takes some of the most famous (and most beautiful) compositions of Mozart and performs them with alternate instruments (small bells and/or a xylophone I believe) to make them more "baby-friendly." I didn't really care for this version of music.

Alicia Van Hecke

Alicia Van Hecke is the editor and webmaster of Favorite Resources for Catholic Homeschoolers. After attending a Catholic elementary school in California, she was homeschooled for all of highschool and became Kolbe Academy's first homeschool graduate in 1988. Alicia went on to receive her B.A. in Liberal Arts from Thomas Aquinas College.

She and her husband, John Van Hecke, have homeschooled their six children from the beginning. Their oldest child is a graduate of Thomas Aquinas College and is now working at the Newman Center of a large state university. Number two is currently a junior at Thomas Aquinas College. Number three has just started out as a probationary member of the local fire department. And finally they have three children still at home and homeschooling, a junior in high school, a freshman in high school and a seventh grader.

She has experience teaching Math, History, Literature, Religion, Latin and Music for a variety of circumstances and ages. She has given talks and workshops on a wide variety of educational and spiritual topics (and especially enjoys speaking on the topic of preparing children to engage the culture) at homeschool conferences in Wisconsin, Minnesota, Kentucky, Tennessee, California and Colorado. She works part-time at her local parish as a liturgical assistant and proof-reader.

Various writings, projects and interviews:

"100 Things You Can Do To Make the World More Pro-Life (and Catholic) No Matter Who is President"

8 Heads Are Better Than One - A Van Hecke family blog in which we all take on silly story-related pseudonyms and write about movies.

"Apologetics: Sacraments, Service and Study," an essay in A Catholic Homeschool Companion (Sophia Institute Press).

Architecture for Kids

The Catholic Home: Authentic Catholic Identity In The Family A Podcast with Deacon Jeff from The Catholic Cafe

"Choosing Worthwhile Homeschool Materials" and 'Preparing Homeschool Kids to Engage the Culture" - webinars for Homeschool Connections.

Homeschooling: Educating Across the Generations An Interview with Il Sussidiario

Living Differently: A Catholic Parent's Guide to Changing the World (An online project currently in progress)

Studeo (personal blog)

Love2learn Moments - Thoughts on education, parenting and homeschooling that have played for a number of years in several Catholic Radio markets.

"Was Incarnate of the Virgin Mary: Professing the Creed for the Year of Faith" at The Wine Dark Sea

"Why Study Heresies?" - an essay in Why Should I Learn This? A Guide for Homeschool Parents and Students by Erin Brown Conroy

Favorite Authors: (in no particular order) Pope Benedict XVI, Norton Juster, Pope John Paul II, Kathryn Forbes, Cervantes, Caryll Houselander, St. Augustine, Willa Cather, G.K. Chesterton, Regina Doman, Mark Twain, J.R.R. Tolkien, Gretchen Rubin, William Shakespeare, J.K. Rowling, Fr. James Schall, S.J., Hilda Van Stockum, C.S. Lewis, St. Athanasius, Ben Hatke, Laura Ingalls Wilder, Carol Ryrie Brink, Homer, Rumer Godden, Frank Sheed, Suzanne Collins, Flannery O'Connor, Fr. Thomas Dubay, Bill Watterson, Fr. Michael Gaitley, Barbara Cooney, Evelyn Waugh, St. Thomas Aquinas, Tomie de Paola, Jane Austen

More favorites here. You can contact her by e-mailing love2learnmom at gmail dot com.

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