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Disclosure: This site contains sponsored posts, affiliate links (which means I earn a percentage of the sale) and is part of the Amazon affiliate program, but all opinions are strictly my own.

Rock ‘N Learn {Giveaway}–CLOSED

Disclosure: This could be a sponsored post or contain affiliate links (which means I earn a percentage of the sale), but all opinions are strictly my own.

My kids learn from music. It’s scary how quickly they both can remember a song, a rhyme or even instructions when given in song form. I actually have to be really careful what we listen to on the radio because they will remember things after the first go-through, and it’s usually the things you don’t want them to remember! So when I found this company, Rock N Learn, I knew it was for us!

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Rock N Learn is a series of educational DVDs, CDs and Apps dedicated to teaching children through music. They sell DVDs that teach everything from early childhood learning to science, math, reading and even foreign languages. Most of the songs are all in the style of rock, but for math and social studies they also offer rap and country DVDs. Those are some our family would never purchase, but I’m sure someone out there would 🙂

1st gradeearly

Their website is really easy to navigate–you can search for DVDs by Subject or by Age, and there is a special tab for their Mobile Apps, iBooks, and Albums available for download on iTunes. And the variety of products they offer is fabulous. Here’s just a sample: Phonics,  Money and Money Changing, Reading Comprehension, Grammar, Getting Ready for Kindergarten, Math Word Problems, Physical Science, the Solar System, States & Capitals, and lots more. They also sell some of their Preschool & Kindergarten titles as Books with CDs, which my son is SUPER into recently, so I love that option.

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 I was sent a copy of the Alphabet DVD to review. My almost-4-year old has known his alphabet for a long time, so I thought he’d be bored with it. But the first time we watched it he was glued. I like that along with showing a picture of the letter (both upper and lower case) and saying the letter name, they show pictures of other words that start with that letter and spell out the word below the picture.  I think this helped extend the video from being just for “babies” to “big kids” (in his words). Another cool thing about this video was that at the end, once they’d gotten through all the letters, they had some letter games. One game was recognizing letters in different fonts, and another was the “Name Game,” where you stand up when the first letter of your name is on the screen. Also, at the very end they show how to write each letter on a chalkboard. This is especially appropriate for my older kid who is learning to write, but a little over-the-top for my two-year old who is just learning her letters. Because of that, I would say the video caters to a wide variety of skills and ages.

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The animation is nothing spectacular, but it kept my kids interest for the 35 minutes of the DVD. The songs were also less “rock” and all started to sound the same after a while, but again, my kids enjoyed it and I know they were learning, so I can handle it. Let’s just say it’s not a DVD I would pop in and watch on my own time 🙂 Here’s a sample of the Alphabet DVD I reviewed. You can preview most DVDs on the individual pages on their website.

Rock N Learn products can be purchased at Rocknlearn.com and on Amazon.com. The prices are pretty reasonable–$19.99 for DVDs, $12.99 for CDs with Books, $3.00 for Books, and some Apps are even free!  They even sell some DVDs in groups, like the 1st & 2nd Grade Collection, at a discounted bundle price. Right now Rock N Learn is offering YOU a discount code for 25% off on any products on their website. Just enter the code JQ7711 at Checkout.  But for one really lucky reader, they are offering a DVD or CD of your choice!

Enter to Win a Rock N Learn DVD or CD of your Choice!

** This giveaway is open to U.S. entries only.

** The winner of this giveaway will be drawn no later than the morning of November 30, 2013, and will be emailed within 24 hours.  If the winner does not respond within 48 hours, a new winner will be drawn.

** This posting and giveaway were sponsored by Rock N Learn, but all opinions are strictly my own.

Hootenanny CD {Giveaway}–CLOSED

Disclosure: This could be a sponsored post or contain affiliate links (which means I earn a percentage of the sale), but all opinions are strictly my own.

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Ask my mom where she grew up and she’ll tell you Compton, with an air of hardness to her voice (for those not familiar with Los Angeles, Compton is now a really scary, gang-infested city). Back in the 60s when my mom was living there, it was actually a really nice place, but she likes to tell people she’s “from the ghetto” even though she’s the epitome of a white suburban housewife. She also has family from New Orleans, and she still tears up when she tastes a real, Southern-style cup of gumbo.  What can I say–she’s proud of her roots! And the band Jambo is out to make today’s kids proud of their roots, too!

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Jambo is a self-proclaimed “roots-based” band that strives to bring an appreciation for different styles of music to its audience of kids. Their “roots” include music from the Mississippi Delta, New Orleans street corners and Chicago juke joints. Jambo’s creator, Steve Pierson, says he wrote two kinds of songs for the album, “full blown band tracks and what I call ‘back porch tracks.” He used at least 10 different guitars throughout the album’s 14 songs–I didn’t even know there was more than one kind of guitar! Talk about learning some music appreciation!

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Jambo’s music is inspired by kids and a desire to bring them back to their roots, so all of the songs are full of positive messages that encourage imagination and learning. I loved that about this CD–I could throw it on for the kids and not worry about the messages they were hearing or the language that was being sung. Everything was happy, silly and good-natured fun. Here’s a fun fact about the band: the band’s vocalist, Melinda McGraw, has been in movies and TV shows such as The Dark Knight, Men of a Certain Age, and Mad Men! Random, but cool. I loved her soulful addition to the band’s sound.

CD

The CD was super fun. My kids and I had a blast dancing around to the tracks and rocking out. Our favorite by far was the title track, “Hootenanny.” The message was great, but the beat was even cooler. Their songs reminded me of eating at Lucille’s Smokehouse Bar-B-Que (do you have those near you? Delicious.) or any other Southern style restaurant where they have live blues/bluegrass music playing throughout the restaurant. I’ve always been a big ska music fan, so some of the tracks with heavy horns (“We are all One Kind,” “Let’s be Friends”) reminded me of ska and had me skanking in the living room (sorry, no video or pictures of that). Other tracks had a softer side, like “Be Yourself” and “Smile,” which were nice to sway and swing to. The Blues-y “Don’t Play With Your Food” was hilarious, and “Ice Cream Soup” was a highlight for us.

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Hootenanny is Jambo’s second CD. Their first, Lucy’s Parade, won both a Parent’s Choice® Award and a Los Angeles Music Award, and Hootenanny has been named one of People Magazine’s “Best Kids Albums Now!” But don’t just trust them, or me for that matter–go out and buy one yourself to see how great their music is! Hootenanny can be purchased at Amazon.com, cdbaby.com and iTunes. Also, if you like going to live concerts, they’re big in the kids music scene and frequently tour, so check out their website to see if they’ll be in a city near you!

Enter below to win a copy of Jambo’s Hootenanny!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

** This giveaway is open to U.S. entries only.

** The winner of this giveaway will be drawn no later than the morning of September 2nd, 2013,  and will be emailed within 24 hours.  If the winner does not respond within 48 hours, a new winner will be drawn.

** This posting and giveaway were sponsored by Jambo and Waldmania PR, but all opinions are strictly my own.

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