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For the Parents For the Family For the Teacher Thrifty
A website dedicated to celebrating the creativity and imagination of Theodor Seuss Geisel. It’s an interactive site with videos, games, teacher resources, and a page for parents.
April Edition of “Knowledge House”
Get links to a free 50-page e-book of Edgar Guest poetry, a great quote of the month, free household notebook pages to print, and much more.
Welcome to the DNA of literature—over 50 years of literary wisdom rolled up in 300+ Writers-at-Work interviews, now available online for free. For the first time, you can read, search, and download any or all of over three hundred in-depth interviews with poets, novelists, playwrights, essayists, critics, and musicians whose work set the compass of twentieth-century writing and continues to do so into the twenty-first century.
eLogic Gallery, Aristotle to the Present by David Marans
Get the free downloadable version of this logic resource and see a little bit of what our forefathers said about logic that made them include it in every course of study. The book is recommended by Trivium Pursuit; the quotes would make great copywork.
The Fallacy Detective News Archives
Brothers Nathaniel and Hans Bluedorn, whose family is behind the Trivium Pursuit website, generate super, free resources to help parents teach logic. Check out the huge list of archived material for its potential as an informal introduction to logic.
Free Online Christian Logic Course
Biblical Reasoning; A Complete Course in Christian Logic was compiled by Scott David Rocca of CrownofChrist.net. There are 12 complete lessons, along with tests, plus an incomplete 13thlesson which ends saying the project is under construction. It remains a worthwhile introduction to the subject, probably suitable for high school and above. Parents without a background in logic would find it well worth their time.
Your Logical Fallacy Is…
“Your Logical Fallacy Is” is a useful tool for learning logic and reasoning. Logical fallacies are flaws in reasoning that are commonly used. Rolling your mouse over any of the icons gives the name and definition of the fallacy; clicking the icon takes you to a page with a more detailed explanation and examples.
The Fallacy Detective
Nathaniel and Hans Bluedorn are the sons of Harvey and Laurie Bluedorn (www.triviumpursuit.com). They have been homeschooled all of their lives and live near New Boston, Illinois. They have co-authored The Fallacy Detective, a book on logic for children and adults. At their website, you can pester them with questions on logic, read interesting articles, read through message boards, and even sign up for a “Logic Loop” via e-mail.
On GeoGebra’s homepage, look through “About,” “Download,” “Community,” and “Materials” when you visit. If you like what you see, consider downloading the free GeoGebra app to use the 4,400 learning activities offered. You’ll find interactive geometry, algebra, statistics, and calculus software. Check the “Featured Materials” to see the newest materials, look over the “Best Worksheets” and the popular tags. Use the Community area to ask questions and share resources.
Get free worksheets, lessons, instructional videos, games, and more at this math site designed for homeschoolers.
Thirty Days Free Trial
AdaptedMind, an online math program, is offering a 30-day free trial of their innovative math-teaching method. Kids can watch teaching videos, earn skill points, and collect badges for skills mastered. Lessons can be customized for different learning styles and move at the child’s own pace. Check out some of their free videos to see how they teach math concepts.
Kids, Chores, and Allowance
Need some ideas having to do with kids, chores, and allowance? Lauren from Mama’s Learning Corner has compiled some great resources!
WebMath features help with a wide range of mathematical topics from practical everyday categories such as figuring a tip or the wind chill factor all the way to help with math from kindergarten through calculus. Among other functions of the site is a drop-down menu with huge list of math subjects. The website will answer math problems and show how the problems were solved.
Printable Tangram Puzzles
Strategy games and other puzzles are helpful in developing logical thinking and mathematical ability. For example, chess is famous for this. Tangrams help develop geometric thinking, logic, and spatial reasoning–and it’s a fun game. Allow free play and challenge your child to construct “pictures” with the pieces, either by matching the printed patterns or by using his own creativity. An Internet search will turn up many more tangram puzzles. Since the pieces could get a lot of handling, it will work best if you print the puzzle pieces themselves on card stock. Alternately, you could print paper pieces in the prescribed shapes to trace onto cardboard such as cereal boxes, or use commercial tangram sets.
Notes: Explain any spelling differences to your students as this is a British site. The Activity Village website is a fantastic resource, although not all material may be suitable for your family. Parents will need to supervise access.)
Free Printable Sudoku Puzzles
Find hundreds of Sudoku puzzles in easy, medium, and hard difficulty levels.
Snow School: Snowflake Science, Snow Math, Snow Reading, and Snow Projects
The title says it all. Find any number of projects related to snow–so take a Snow Day and learn too!
Printable Play Money
Use these free printables that (legally) replicate U.S. currency to play store or bank, or to work out real world math problems.
Winter Wonderland Worksheet – Math for Middle Schoolers
Here is a worksheet for math enthusiasts or middle school students who need to brush up on math word problems during the Christmas break.
This site presents mathematical puzzles either for the deceptive simplicity of their statement or the elegance of their solution. Explaining how an answer is derived is more important than the answer itself. To this end, hints, answers, and fully worked solutions are provided, together with links to related mathematical topics. Further references are provided with many of the solutions. The puzzles are intended to be fun, with an educational element.
Favorite Ice Cream Flavors
See how to sneak a math lesson into a poll on favorite ice cream flavors. The blog post even includes suggestions to allow use with preschoolers and kindergarteners. If you need more people to poll, take a survey of your homeschool co-op, neighbors, Sunday school class, etc.
Art of Problem Solving
Alcumus currently offers free access to math problems and video lessons designed to challenge strong math students (for students about 10 years old and up). Subjects range from pre-algebra to algebra II.
Dedicated to math contests open to homeschoolers, this site includes curriculum reviews and helpful articles. The website was originally designed by a nine-year-old homeschool student.
Making Music Fun
Making Music Fun offers many free resources and even has a “Homeschool Teacher Index” page (under “Music Library” near the bottom of the homepage). There is a section on composers with free printable coloring pages, word searches, and biographies. Use their free beginning lessons on music theory and instruments of the orchestra. The site has a free newsletter too. Material is geared toward elementary school students.
“Listening to Music” from Yale
This high school and college level course, via the “Open Yale” program, has videos, print notes, and books you may buy (or borrow from the library) if you wish. The professor helps students learn how to listen and understand Western music using a variety of musical styles ranging from Bach and Mozart, to Gregorian chant, to the blues.
Free Sheet Music
Free sheet music categorized by instrument or artist.
Free Gershwin Unit Study
Are you doing a composer study in your homeschool? Learn about George Gershwin in this free unit study from Mary, a former public school teacher, now a homeschool mom, who loves to teach about music.
Helping Picky Eaters
Thanks to Joyce Herzog, a gem of the homeschool movement, who suggested this link to help parents deal with overly picky eaters. It is said to be a gradual, easy program and the website has a newsletter you may subscribe to if you like.
Here is a winter twist on a very old game. Bundle the kids up and let them hop around–whether or not it snows where you are!
ABC Printables and Activities
Take a look at this great site (remembering not to overdo worksheets) for ABC printables, lessons organized by letters, and dozens of themes and activities. It is suitable for toddlers (18 months) through kindergarteners. Check the sidebars for more resources.
Here are gorgeous photos with adorable babies engrossed in discovering things for themselves with items from themed Discovery Boxes. Some themes are magnetism, ramps and chutes, and tubes and beans–there are lots more! Just click on the picture’s title to go to the page that tells all about it.
Toddler-Made Christmas Ornament
For a quick, easy keepsake decoration, try this simple idea that uses a clear glass ornament and folk art paint.
15 Toddler Craft Ideas
Enjoy some crafts you might not have tried before via this selection on FaveCrafts.
Hanging Bird Treats
The birds will be thankful and your kids will enjoy this simple craft. An internet search will turn up more bird-seed crafts.
Pine Cone Toss
This simple game will not only help teach counting and other math skills, it’s great for developing hand-eye coordination, motor skills, and even sportsmanship. Besides, it will help get the pesky pine cones out of the way before mowing.
10 Mazes for Preschoolers
Among the ideas is making mazes with chalk (on the driveway or chalkboard), with blocks, or with masking tape. Enhance the maze with letters or numbers to follow. The author suggests that mazes are not just mere recreation, but are “about problem solving and figuring how to get to that end goal.”
See the printable fall play dough math mats (five kinds) and other resources the site offers. Lots of possibilities for extension activities will come to mind with these ideas as springboards.
35 Uses for Crayons Besides Coloring
What to do with all the crayons? Here are 35 uses for them besides coloring. Frame a photo, make luminaries, make a wreath, and many more ideas!
Toddler Bucket List
Find “25 Super Simple Activities: Bucket List for the Toddler Years” with loads of ways to occupy a kidlet while you teach. They’re also fantastic fun ways to spend time with junior.
Here are free printable charts to help remind children of their responsibilities (less nagging by parents), help motivate children to be consistent and to improve, and help remind parents to keep kids accountable. Refer to Item 3.4 in the September 18th Update for suggested tasks.
“Drawing and Storytelling with a Purple Crayon”
Do you remember Harold and the Purple Crayon? This article is less about that exact book and more about using a well-known (or well-liked by you) book and teaching from it. Having your child make a drawing inspired by the book and then tell about it (telling his story aloud) is a great pre-writing activity. Try the suggested “complete the drawing” exercise from a paper you supply with a squiggle or shape on it. Look for more “Harold” stories in the library.
“A, B, C” worksheets are free to print and will provide plenty of practice with letters. Works with a Windows operating system only.
Devotional Lessons for Preschoolers (and Up)
Check under “Age-Specific Faith Activities” for preschool-level ideas you can incorporate into homeschool or family devotions. By the way, school-agers, tweens, and teenaged kids have not been left out.
Learning with Stamps
Nope, not postal stamps, the kind that may be languishing with other items in Mom’s craft supplies. Here are some very simple ideas for using them. We think it will spark creative ways to use other supplies you already have on hand in new ways!
101 Amazingly Awesome Things to do with Your Preschooler
You may have come up with a lot of these ideas on your own–and dismissed them as being unworthy of your time. On the other hand, your child may indeed think they are fabulous if you leave what you are doing and spend just a few minutes of dedicated time with him (some activities are that brief). Besides, lying on a blanket looking at clouds can be restful. Now wake up and go spend time with the little one!
Preschool and Kindergarten: An Illustrated Field Trip
Demonstrating how they do “Preschool at Home,” one family photo-illustrates their field trip to a manatee sanctuary. Since the trip was impromptu, the mom was unable to prepare her usual pre-field trip activities, but she offers suggestions for what she would have done if she’d had more planning time. Take a look and see what ideas you can add.
ABC Fast Phonics
Here are some free, interactive phonics exercises that cover a bit of the basics.
Christmas in July–Hurry!
Well, okay, you can start to think about Christmas in July–that will count. Here is an idea for a quiet book or just a collection of activity pages; an older sibling could make (or contribute to) one for a younger sibling. Use felt or construction paper and stick-type glue–or any other you can add your creative touches to! The little pieces of felt aren’t terribly expensive even if lost, but do give an opportunity to learn to care for craft or game pieces with inexpensive materials. Crafts really do teach!
Happy Birthday, Beatrix Potter – July 28
Happy Birthday to children’s author, Beatrix Potter, who was born July 28, 1866. Learn about her life in the timeline and find something fun to do in the “Fun-and- Games” section.
19 Easy Toddler Activities and Preschool Crafts
With ideas that range from traditional egg carton caterpillars to a glass xylophone (parents needed here!), you’ll find something fun to do with the younger crowd. Some activities are suitable to keep and re-use such as the indoor putt-putt set, homemade board games, and a teepee for hours of pretend play. Find an almost inexhaustible list in the left sidebar for even more possible things to make and do; choose ones that are suitable for your family. Categories for older kids will offer more playtime ideas, including educational activities.
Free HSLDA Membership for Parents of Preschoolers (and Younger)
The Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA) is offering free membership to families whose oldest child is a preschooler. HSLDA has many free resources online, and its members get an added level of support through their ability to call or e-mail any of their educational consultants for personalized advice. If your oldest child is not yet five years old, you may be eligible for free membership for parents of preschoolers. Check the website for more and spread the word!
Unit Study – Beginning Money and Economics
Did you know children in this young age range can learn the beginnings of economics? Begin with vocabulary, add identification of currency with basic math, and finish with arts and crafts–you knew a homemade piggy bank was coming, didn’t you?
Summertime Bucket List: 50 Activities for the Kids
While the older kids are planning their trip(s)–see 3.4– the younger set could be occupied working their way through a summer playtime bucket list. Here are 50 activities that your kids will love. It helps that most items on this “to do” list are free or cheap and are done at home! The activities take varying amounts of time and supervision, so there is sure to be one that meets your needs at a given time. Try out fizzing sidewalk paint, a pill bug race, or make “dirt soup.” Be on the lookout for bits of things to go into a summer memory jar at the end of the season. Some children who are above kindergarten age may also participate happily.
Fathers’ Day Crafts
Here are some simple, kid-friendly crafts your crew could make to give Dad for Fathers’ Day.
Vertical Vegetable Gardening
Do you think you have too little space to garden? Do you think your junior gardener can’t handle a real plot of land and will simply abandon it to you for care? The idea pictured could allow several children to have individual “gardens” stacked in a small space as a manageable introduction to gardening. Get some expert tips for vertical vegetable gardening along with recipes! Having children grow vegetables themselves is sometimes suggested for getting young, picky eaters to try those nutrient-rich foods.
Age-Appropriate Kids’ Cooking Lessons
Believe it or not, the suggested lessons begin with two-year-olds! The ideas listed provide a good example of the amount of learning possible from everyday life activities. Lessons continue with age groups that go all the way to “senior chefs” (16- to 18-year-olds).
Coloring Pages and More
Here are a variety of Bible-related coloring pages and Scripture memory pages.
Golden Books Online
This small site is probably primarily to make us reminiscent of our favorite childhood books so we’ll buy them from Golden Books for our kids, but there are a few printables related to the books, a few games, and a little more when you have time to explore. You won’t get lost–but you will have an overwhelming urge to dig out your copy of The Golden Egg Book by Margaret Wise Brown!
World Book’s “Typical Course of Study”
The writers of World Book Encyclopedia have compiled a general list of what they think children in preschool and kindergarten should learn. Such a list for this age group is often reassuring, as it consists mainly of normal household tasks (dressing himself, putting away toys) and the most basic academics (understands big and little, has books, and is read to daily). If an area of learning has not yet been mastered, it is easy enough to go ahead and introduce it, remembering each child develops at his own unique rate.
“Preschool for Free at Home”
For all the fancy curricula out there, homeschooling little ones doesn’t have to be pricey! This site offers frugal ideas, from checking out storybooks at the local library to learning days and months from a calendar.
More Than 40 Activities for Two-Year-Olds
Even somewhat older children will enjoy the fun as you spend some focused time with your two-year old. Some activities are silly and fun, others are ones that help them develop specific skills, and still others are creative in nature.
Seven Different Sets of ABC Pages and Other Activity Printables
Choose from farm-themed ABCs, ABCs and words, “Animal and object ABCs,” “Classic ABCs,” and other styles. There are also math sheets all the way up to simple algebra and geometry; puzzles (mazes, word searches, dot-to-dots, and more); coloring (some may not be suitable for your family)
Traveling with Toddlers and Preschoolers
With spring here, you will probably spend more time going to and from outings–and summer travel is right around the corner! Here’s a whole page full of suggested educational, fun, and diverting ways to pass the time in the car.
Printable Alphabet Activity Books
Attractive graphics that you can customize will make these little printables useful if you want hands-on booklets.
Making Musical Instruments
Choose any or all of these homemade instruments–if you have sound nerves and lots of ear plugs! These ideas are sure to spark some of your own, and Internet searches will turn up many more DIY musical crafts. You’ll enjoy happy music-making after you make the instruments–we love crafts with a purpose!
“Playing with Your 21-Month Old”
Wondering what to do with your toddler? See this post for photos–with captions!– illustrating some straightforward ideas of activities to do with your little one. See links at the end of the post about activities suggested for toddlers ages 13 months to two years.
This free, basic phonics program includes some U.S. geography as a bonus. Also, see links to other phonics sites. The reading booklets previously sold are free to download and print now.
Kids Learning Station Printables
Here is another stash of free printables with the usual early childhood categories: colors, shapes, numbers, letter, etc. The site offers additional areas such as music, weather, space, family, and the body, and has some sheets for older students too.
There may be some not suitable for your family.
Article: “Teach Me to Play”
The blog post relates a formal study that concluded, “Unstructured play positively affects social, emotional, and cognitive development,”–as if parents needed anyone to tell them that! There is a good deal more in the blog post sure to provide food for thought, even if you do not agree completely with the writer’s schooling approach.
Happy Birthday, Dr. Seuss – March 2, 1904
Dr. Seuss’s birthday is coming up. There are plenty of resources on the web for any “Seussologist,” but you could start the day with green eggs and ham.
Dramatic Play Ideas
Skim through these suggestions from moms, home daycare owners, and commercial daycare operators to see if they spark new ideas for your little ones. (Note: Not all their suggestions will be suitable for your family.) Thrift shop bag sales (“All you can stuff in a paper grocery sack for $_”) are great sources of old clothes for dress up. Unneeded and long out-of-fashion styles from grandparents are a cost-free gift idea!
Easy Valentine Cards
See a clever idea for a finger- or brush-painted card suitable for young artists. There are also links to more cards at the bottom of the page.
Age Appropriate Chore List
Many parents wonder what household chores are appropriate at what age. Here is one mom’s list–beginning with babies!
Therapy Crafts and Kids Crafts
The therapy crafts are suggested for use by “diversional therapists, art therapists and occupational therapists”–but they are usable by families, too! The crafts and activities are especially designed for children with special needs or for one who is ill, but anyone could enjoy them. (Some activities are also highlighted for use by the elderly–a great way to include older grandparents whose activities are limited.) Find detailed instructions and the purpose of the individual craft.
The website has the usual assortment of crafts suitable for kids, but what makes the site special is the tidy materials list and “Craft Toolbox” that contains the time requirement, suitable ages, and an easy link to any comments.
Games for Playground Balls
Find simple directions for at least 10 different games to play with old-fashioned playground balls. Parents and grandparents will be able to teach a variety of different games to their families and neighborhood children. Find your family favorites–and have a ball! (Sorry–we couldn’t resist.)
The Kids’ Chalkboard
The Kids’ Chalkboard has many art project ideas, ABC and number activities, craft recipes, and loads of other educational and fun activities for preschoolers. There is also a helpful list of what to expect from a child of preschool age along with one state’s list of skills kindergarten children should learn. Remember, you know your child best and each child develops on a unique timetable.
Happy Birthday, Jesus (on a Great Site!)
Use any of the ideas suitable to your needs or beliefs to plan a birthday party for Jesus with your family, friends, co-op, or Sunday school class. Find songs, a Bible verse bracelet, a finger play, a story, and art. Finish off the gathering with snack time! The main website, which may be useful at other times, is at the second link.
Free Printable Advent Coloring Pages
This Advent series has pages suitable for any Christmas-season coloring. Note the additional links to more related printables at the bottom of the page. Those pages in turn have more resources linked.
This link is just one of many available online for homemade marbles. Use polymer modeling clay, regular pottery-type clay–or even the flour-salt dough variety to home make everything! Parents can research YouTube for videos showing traditional glass marble making and for visual demonstrations of making marbles at home.
See the second link for several marbles’ games variations.
How to Play Marbles
Marbles is a great, old-fashioned game that does not require batteries or electricity, and also has many variations. Games such as this teach fine-motor skills, and the importance of taking turns, following rules, and picking up (prevents falls, loss, and younger siblings getting them into their mouths!).
15 Colorful Activities Celebrating Fall Colors
While most of these varied art and other subject activities will appeal to the younger children, older siblings will be interested in some as well.
“Hey Parents–Why the Rush???”
Among the issues each family must decide for itself is what to teach and when. Could you be causing frustration because you are trying to keep up or compete with other homeschoolers (or the world)? She suggests fun ways to teach a child “with the attention span of a gnat”!
Learn the Colors of the Rainbow
Everyone remembers learning colors with Roy G. Biv. This simple game is fun to make and fun to play!
Pilgrim and Indian Puppets – Craft and Activity
These simple stick puppets are made of paper bags and felt (substitute construction paper or craft foam if that’s what you have). Children will need varying amounts of adult help according to age. Children can act out all of the Thanksgiving lessons coming up.
Simple toilet paper tubes and paper muffin cups make an easy craft and a great rainy day activity. Charlotte Mason was a big advocate of handicrafts as teaching tools. They teach following directions; the ideas of supply organization, preparation, and clean up; and fine motor skills. Of course, some crafts can lead to lifelong hobbies with relaxing (or invigorating) creative outlets, thoughtful homemade gifts, or even paid crafting!
Indoor Camping Trip
Read about and see lots of photographic evidence of the joy some little boys experienced on an indoor camping “trip.” It’s how to go camping–and take the high chair!
Sticky Note Hunt
Here are a few ideas for conducting a sticky note hunt for shapes, letters, colors, and words.
See examples of and get directions for making quite a few attractive visual and tactile (kinesthetic) ways to make learning letters fun and easy.
ABC Fast Phonics
Designed to supplement more comprehensive phonics programs, ABC Fast Phonics is a free tutorial using cartoons and sounds to teach basic phonics concepts.
Tips for Bread Baking with Kids
Novice bread bakers will benefit from this list of well thought out bread baking tips. It’s a great list to read over before you embark on the Great Bread Baking Adventure!
Preschool and Kindergarten Curriculum (of Real Life Activities)
This article is chock-full of everyday, life-learning activities from arts and crafts, to nature, to playtime, to math and pre-reading activities you can work into your day.
Free “Ants” Unit to Download
Download a free “Ants Preschool Pack” from “2 Teaching Mommies.” See the other freebies they offer too!
Four Tips to Get Great Deals on Quality Children’s Books
The writer (a homeschool mom) suggests you find pickier sales, familiarize yourself with great books, think about what you need for this year, and go early and take cash. Read the whole short article for more information, including some of her favorite types of books and a couple of “don’ts.” You’ll save money and be a happier shopper.
Early Years Read-Alouds
Simply Charlotte Mason.com has a suggested read-aloud list for children ages three through five years. Learn more about each title by clicking on the title. Preview books to see if they are appropriate for your family.
“Smile Smarts!” Oral Health Activities
Smile Smarts! is an oral health curriculum for students in preschool through grade eight divided into age appropriate groups of materials. The lessons are flexible and come with lesson plans, support materials, hands-on demonstrations, activity sheets, and suggestions for even more oral health-related activities, such as career information in the dental field for older students.
The Gardening Tot
Aside from the fact that little kids love dirt (we did not need to be reminded, did we?), there is so much more to it that we grown-ups tend to overlook. Take advantage of their natural inclinations and help them create art, study nature, begin to learn scientific observation, not to mention learn how to grow their own food and flowers! Then top it off with fun-in-the-sun scavenger hunts, guessing games, and running around outdoors. What more could a kid want?
Could My Child Have Autism?
ScienceDaily, an online newsletter, carried an article that outlined 10 possiblesigns of autism-related delays to look for in babies as young as 6 to 12 months. Some experts believe interventions begun even in infancy can improve outcomes for a child on the autism spectrum, a condition most commonly diagnosed between the ages of 2 and 3. Look for links on the same page to related stories.
Household Math and Science Activities
Find lists of suggested activities in most categories of math and science. Some examples are to classify blocks by size or have a shape/color hunt. By the way, the best activities are where the child does the work–have him seek the item in question, rather than you getting them and asking the child to choose “which one is …”.
Typical Subjects of Study
See what many consider good topics for preschoolers and kindergarteners to study.
Even Kindies Learn about the Heart
Even if these ideas (many based on purchased curriculum) don’t “grab yer heart” (sorry–had to do that), there are loads of free printables, hands-on learning, and crafts ideas–many for little ones.
Dripless Honey Spread
Try this for a dripless honey treat or search the Internet for another version of the recipe for honey butter. Even little ones can learn kitchen tricks like lightly greasing a measuring cup before measuring sticky honey.
Special Needs Resources
Experts advise starting early when it comes to intervention for children who have special needs. Parents may find helpful information in the extensive list of links for homeschool-related resources for any special needs in the family.
See suggested items for kits for travel, a “day at the office,” visiting grandparents, sick day, or restaurant. You can decide what to include and the slideshow will be sure to spark ideas of your own for kits for other uses.
Music and Young Children
The article challenges the conventional wisdom on the effect classical music supposedly has on babies. Studies seem to show positive effects in children who are quite young–even premature babies; perhaps not exactly the “Mozart Effect” often touted. Read how the exposure to good music is a great introduction for lifelong enjoyment, how rhymes and melodies seem to help set the stage for reading and other language development, and about other benefits of various types of music involvement, such as lessons.
Select by animal to find a video clip or episode; clips make nice breaks and rewards. TV shows are also available, as are games. Parents may wish to screen first to ensure biological details are age-appropriate for your children.
Toddlers and Homeschooling
Wondering what to do with your toddlers while you homeschool your older children? Rachel at The Homeschool Post blog lays out a 6-part strategy in this article.
Free Alphabet Printables
Download a variety of traditional ABC worksheets, tracing pages, and much more from edHelper.
40+ Tips for Road Trips
Find more than 40 ideas to make your next road trip with the little ones easier. Tips are divided into categories such as games and activities, art, snacks, and must-haves. See the article for even more categories!
All ages will enjoy visits to these virtual zoos when you just can’t get to one in person. There are nine from which to choose!
“Zooborns” Animal Babies
The Zooborns website has the latest news on animal babies from zoos and aquaria worldwide–and boy are they CUTE! Search the sidebar list of animals to see the babies from aardvarks to zebras or search by zoo. Check the list of baby animal names to learn what a baby eel is called. Find out what galagos, gerenuks, and gundis are. There are even free Zooborn apps for android and iPhone (great way to entertain a fidgety kiddo while waiting in the checkout line!).
Reading and Phonics
Tracy Taylor, a homeschooling mom of four from South Carolina, has compiled reading materials drawn from her time as a first grade teacher and reading interventionist. She has created a website dedicated to helping parents teach their children to read. It contains background information on the reading process, book lists, online resource lists, and other homeschooling ideas. She offers an e-booklet for sale with her information in it. If you have any questions or feedback, feel free to e-mail her at email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Using Games to Teach
A recent issue of the (free weekly e-mail) “Homeschool Minute” put out by the Old Schoolhouse® Magazine covered using games to teach. In addition to a number of concrete suggestions and websites, there are important tips on how to do it constructively so you also have fun and build family ties while teaching. By the way, games go way beyond just the little ones!
See an overview of various (mostly free) phonics systems and activities. Many of the activities may be used in isolation. Not all the websites listed may be suitable. Best of all–do plenty of reading aloud to your little ones!
Mnemonic for Cannon vs. Canon
“Cannons” go BOOM! See the double letters in the middle of each? “Canon” (as in law) can say, ”No!” See the “no” in the middle? Hope this little trick helps. The Holy Spirit can wonderfully enable us to teach–even inspiring parent-educators with little things such as this.
Dedicated to helping children learn to read, Starfall, has many resources for beginning readers. The website is offered free as a public service. It also provides writing journals and books at a very low cost, to be used with the website or separately.