review – Sue Patrick’s Workbox System


Note: I am doing a two-part review on this system. Shortly after receiving it to review, the company that employs my husband hit financial rocky water. I temporarily do not have the funds to set up the system the way Sue Patrick prefers, and I don’t want to give my opinion of how it works for us until I try it her way. I will review the e-book now & will update with our results!

Workboxes were all the rage this summer on the homeschool forums. I was immediately drawn to the idea for my two younger students. It would allow them to get some of their school work done without constantly asking Mommy what to do next. It seemed like a simple idea, and there were blogs aplenty with set-up info, so was there any reason to read the book? Well, after receiving a free copy to review, my answer would be YES!

Sue Patrick developed the Workbox System after her son was diagnosed with Autism. She has spent years fine-tuning her system and teaching  it to other families. (It works for all children, not just one with learning struggles.) The idea is simple: a shoe rack and twelve clear boxes are used to order a child’s daily work. The child works through the boxes in order and can see at a glance how much work is left.

Information abounds about how to set up workboxes, but Sue Patrick’s book contains so much more than that. She walks you through, step-by-step, the why & how of workboxes (with pics). I am a visual learner and this is a big deal to me. My favorite part of the book is when she shows how to customize different items for your children. She shows you how to set up learning centers using posters, and how to take a common worksheet and make it more interesting (again, with pics!). We are a non-textbook family and this was a big help to me.

I do feel the need to pass along the fact that Sue Patrick and I do not see eye to eye about a few things. (Not that we need to see things the same for me to benefit from her book, but she has very strong opinions about them.)

  • She seems to be a “school at home” person – very structured and classroom-y. We do half of our work on the couch all together.
  • She thinks you should focus on school, & only school, during school hours. I have 5 kids and things like switching out the laundry between subjects are a necessity around here.
  • She thinks there is too much talking going on in homeschools. Not really gonna comment on this one, except to say we’ll have to agree to disagree :-)
  • She does not like people to “tweak” her system. I will be using the box system for my two younger ones, but a folder system for the older kids. Five students x 12 boxes = no room! I don’t think is it reasonable to expect big families to find that kind of money or space.

Having said all that, I’m not going to throw the baby out with the bath water just because we disagree on a few things. I just didn’t want you to be surprised. You can view sample pages HERE.

The Nitty Gritty:

The e-book is $19.95. It includes a link to some basic forms to download. You can view her catalog HERE for more products that go along with the Workbox system.

Things I Like:

  • The book has several ideas for creating learning centers and customized worksheets.
  • This system gives my kids more control over their day and frees me up a little to help the ones who need one-on-one instruction.
  • This is probably my favorite thing – it is easy to add in all those little fun educational projects that we never really get around to. I’m not a naturally organized person and this is a good fit for me.

Value: I think this is a reasonable price for the manual, the helpful photos, and the downloads. Like I stated before, I really benefit from the visuals.

See what my TOS Crew Mates have to say about Sue Patrick’s Workbox system!

*jingle* break it up


Sometimes you can save a little money by taking a set of items and breaking it up into several gifts.

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~ Virginia Soaps & Scents I will be posting a review on this soap next week, but I’ll sum up my opinion for you in one sentence: I love it!! The scents are wonderful and the olive oil base leaves my skin sooo smooth (and I”m not getting paid to say that!) I really want to try the Christmas Scents.

Sampler contains twelve 1.75 oz. bars for $18 in these scents:

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They have a new deal on their full size 4.5 oz. bars – 10 bars for $35.00.

review – Guardian Angel Publishing


We received 5 e-books from Guardian Angel Publishing to review. You can also purchase the books in CD or print form. I’m really impressed with the educational books, like the bones & earthquake titles. The are full of interesting information and very enjoyable to read – not dull or dry. I would prefer to read a story book in print form, but the science books worked great for us on the computer.

Here are the titles we read:

an1No Bones About It!

There is a bunch of information packed into this little book. Each page has several facts about bones & the body, and then there is a catchy little rhyme at the bottom that teaches the names of the bones in order. The pictures might be a bit graphic for the squeamish, but my gang loves that kind of silly stuff.



This very energetic, colorful book looks at what causes earthquakes and how they are tracked & measured. A few easy activities are scattered throughout and there is quite a bit of info on being prepared in the event of an earthquake. (We don’t have much of a need for that in this area, but I hope they come out with a similar book about tornadoes!!)


Andy and Spirit Go to the Fair

Andy has some physical disabilities, but he is able to overcome some challenges with the help of his horse Spirit. We just recently attended our state fair, so this book had good timing. This was not one of my favorites, but I think a little horse lover might enjoy it.


Maybe We Are Flamingos

This book is too cute! Little Flora and Fernando are worried that they will never be pink like the other flamingos. They find out that the pink color comes from their diet and start imagining what they would look like if they ate broccoli or tacos. This would be an adorable book to read with your pre-k/k child and then do a drawing activity like they did in the book.


Rainbow Sheep

The illustrations are what make this book so sweet. All of the characters are created from felted wool and they are beautiful. A big bonus: there are four pages at the end that give instruction on felting wool and show a few felted projects.

The Nitty Gritty:

  • e-books are $5.00
  • e-book CDs and printed books start at around $10.00 + shipping

Things I Like:

  • The educational books are packed with information.
  • The pictures and writing are very appealing.
  • The e-books are affordable.
  • Even though I prefer a physical book, these were very easy to read when I chose to view them in a 2-page layout.

Value: I think the e-books are a good value. I can’t really give an opinion on the printed books without seeing one.

See what my TOS Crew Mates have to say about Guardian Angel Publishing.