Friday, December 26, 2014

Digital Books Starring Your Family

I'm sure you have seen those adorable JibJab videos - the ones where you place pictures of your friends and family on dancing characters.  But, did you know that they also have a site for creating digital books starring your family?

Holiday apps & digital books starring your family!

What a great way to motivate your little readers when they see a book with familiar faces!  Simply go to Storybots to create your own book.  You can choose from a variety of stories and change the characters around to suit your needs. 

Saturday, October 11, 2014

October's Highlights Hidden Pictures Freebie

[Hidden Pictures Preview]
Fall is in the air and pumpkins are everywhere!  See how many items your child can find in this fun pumpkin patch inspired hidden pictures from Highlights.  Hidden pictures are a great way to help your child increase their attention to small details - plus they are fun!

October's Hidden Picture

Saturday, September 13, 2014

September Hidden Highlights Picture

[Hidden Pictures Preview]

Is your child able to pay close attention to detail?  The Hidden Pictures freebies from Highlights are a fun and easy way to help your child develop concentration and attention to detail.  The kids in this month's freebie are absolutely adorable!  Your kids will love it!

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

My Little Pony Multiplication Color By Number Freebie

My Little Pony- Advanced Multiplication Color Cartoon fun math practice Free worksheet

If you have a My Little Pony fan in your house, they will love practicing their multiplication facts as they color in Pinkie Pie.  

My Little Pony- Advanced Multiplication fun Cartoon math practice free worksheet

You can download this freebie at Coloring Squared.

Monday, June 30, 2014

We All Learn Differently

Today I am excited to have a guest post for you from Dianne Miller, author of The Little Bunny Series.  Read her great post about different learning styles, and the visit her blog to get some great freebies and other resources.

When my first daughter was six months old, I popped her in a bouncy chair and taped gift bows to the tray in front of her. She spent hours patting and crunching the bows. I changed them out as they became tattered. It was an endless parade of colors and textures to entertain her.

When my second daughter was six months old, I popped her in the same bouncy chair and enthusiastically taped gift bows to the tray. She looked at them. Her big brown eyes took it all in and then moved around the room. The bows never enticed her.

At their earliest ages my two daughters had completely different learning styles. The learning differences would stay with them through their entire education.

The older daughter loved to do things, scooping up snails in the creek and biking around town with friends. 

My younger daughter loved to reflect, reading long book series and playing quietly with dolls. The older one went on to win science fairs and the younger one took Latin for six years.

There are seven different learning styles:

-Visual, also called spatial, prefers to learn with pictures.
-Musical, also called aural, prefers to learn with sound and music.
-Verbal, also called linguistic, prefers to learn with spoken and written words.
-Physical, also called kinesthetic, prefers to learn with movement and experience.
-Logical, also called mathematical, prefers to learn using logic and systems.
-Social, prefers to learn in groups.
-Solitary, prefers to learn alone.

We all have a mix of learning styles. But usually one is our strongest. My elder daughter is obviously kinesthetic and my younger daughter is logical. As an artist and children’s book author and illustrator, I am gangbusters visual.

Our school systems have made leaps and bounds in the last twenty years addressing these different learning styles. Learning differences are openly discussed and lesson plans are written to embrace them. But the very nature of learning to read, write and do arithmetic favors the logical and verbal learners. Once we observe how our children learn, we can incorporate fun learning games into homework and study time.

My older daughter had a terrible time adding and subtracting positive and negative numbers. Until one day I drew the number line on the front walk and had her step out the math problems. When we reached subtracting a negative, she said “Don’t tell me, I know it.” She turned from facing forward to add to facing backwards to subtract and then turned around again to face forwards to subtract a negative. Not only did she get the answer correct, she understood the reason it was correct.

Here are a few fun, easy things to do with your preschooler to help discern and encourage their different learning strengths.

- Clap the numbers as you count, 1 clap, 2 clap clap; physical, logical and musical learning.
- Play a game of opposites as you run errands, we’re in the car, we’re out of the car; physical, verbal and logical learning.
- Sing silly songs, both the classics and ones you make up; musical and verbal learning.
- Play eye spy, “I spy with my little eye a red balloon”; visual and verbal learning.
- Read signs aloud wherever it is fun; verbal learning.
- Pour sand, sprinkles or glitter into a tray and draw letters and numbers; physical, visual, logical and verbal learning.
- Whenever there is a number of items add and subtract them, three strawberries plus two strawberries is five strawberries; physical and logical learning.

Over time your child’s learning style will start to become apparent. Although the schools are too overburdened to create a curriculum just for your child, you can reinforce what they are learning at school with fun activities at home that suit their learning strengths. 

Dianne Miller is a landscape painter who lives in Virginia with her husband and two daughters. Her work includes the Little Bunny series written for her children when they were preschoolers. The simply written and illustrated books gently guide Little Bunny through the challenges of life. You can find tons of original, free printables and the Little Bunny series at:

Saturday, June 28, 2014

July 2014 Free Traceable Calendars

Calendars are a great way to add real world applications to your math lessons.  Your child can practice writing numbers, counting, recognizing even and odd numbers, and so much more.  You can download this free traceable calendar for July here.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Sponge Bob Color By Number Division Freebie

Spongebob Squarepants- Basic Division Color Cartoon fun math practice Free worksheet

Oh... Who lives in a pineapple under the sea? SPONGE BOB SQUARE PANTS!  Your kids will love practicing simple division facts with this free color by number worksheet featuring everyone's favorite Krusty Krab employee!  
Spongebob Squarepants- Basic Division fun Cartoon math practice free worksheet

You can download this free worksheet at Coloring Squared.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Division Color By Number Freebie - Phineas and Ferb

Dr. Doofenshmirtz- Advanced Division fun math Phineas and Ferb cartoon practice FreeDr. Doofenshmirtz- Advanced Division math practice Phineas and Ferb cartoon free worksheet

One way to get my boys to practice math facts is by making it fun.  They love Phineas and Ferb, so they are going to love these color by number division sheets for Dr. Doofenshmirtz.  You can grab this freebie from Coloring Squared.

Sunday, June 15, 2014

June Hidden Highlights Picture

[Hidden Pictures Preview]

I always loved Highlight's Hidden pictures as a child. Share the fun with your child, as you help develop their concentration and attention to detail.  

Friday, June 6, 2014

June 2014 Free Traceable Calendars

Calendars are a great way to practice real world math with your little ones.  I especially like these traceable calendars for the little ones who are just learning to write their numbers.  You can find this freebie (along with tons of other resources for younger learners) from Childcareland.

June 2014 Traceable Calendar Freebie

Sunday, May 4, 2014

May 2014 Traceable Calendar

Calendars are a great way to practice real world math with your little ones.  I especially like these traceable calendars for the little ones who are just learning to write their numbers.  You can find this freebie (along with tons of other resources for younger learners) from Childcareland.

Free Traceable Calendar May 2014

Saturday, April 12, 2014

April Highlights Hidden Picture Freebie

[Hidden Pictures Preview]

Spring has sprung!  Your kiddos will love finding all of the pictures in this Spring themed Hidden Picture freebie!  Highlights Hidden pictures are great for practicing attention to detail and are just plain fun!

Monday, March 31, 2014

Dr. Seuss Read Alouds

While we all know there is just no substitute for reading aloud with your child, there are times when it would be nice to have someone else to do it for you.  Think those days when you have a long list of things to do, those days when your voice is cracking from the flu, or those days when you are driving on a long trip.  Instead of having your child watch a video, you might want to share some of these great Dr. Seuss Read Alouds.  Not only will they entertain your child, but it will increase their reading skills as well!

 Some other videos include:

Fox in Socks

The Lorax

Hop On Pop

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Free Math Text Books

If you are looking for some new resources for your math instruction, you may want to head over to How to Homeschool for Free where you can download 5 different math texts from the 1920's.  There are five different levels including:
 First Year In Numbers (grade 2) 
 Everyday Arithmetic Book 1 (grades 3 & 4) 
 Everyday Arithmetic Book 2 (grades 5 & 6)
 Everyday Arithmetic Book 3 (grades 7 & 8) 

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Freebie Frozen Printables

Frozen Button Frozen Pre K Pack
I don't know about the children in your home, but I know that the children in my home LOVE, LOVE, (and did I mention LOVE?) Frozen.  We have seen it umpteen times and everyone in the house knows the lyrics to almost all of the songs.  I found this great freebie pack based on the movie from overthebigmoon.  Although it is too young for my kiddos, if you have a little one, you will want to grab this now!

Included in this Pre-K Pack is:

Prewriting Practice Sheets – Cutting Practice – Which one is different?
Finish the Pattern Sheet – Size Sequencing Sheet – Frozen Movie Strip Puzzle
4-piece Puzzles – Sorting Practice -Counting Practice Cards
Color Olaf -  2-Part Vocabulary Cards
Shadow Matching – Letter Ff Identification – Letter Ee Identification
Letter Aa Identification – Frozen Matching - Letter Aa Sorting Page

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Elmer's Giveaway

Ever since I was a little girl buying my own school supplies, I always picked Elmer's glue.  It just worked the best.  And even back then, I wondered how does glue work in the first place? It was only much later in life (in a college class no less) that I learned that glue was a polymer.  Well, I didn't want my own kiddos to wait until college to find out, because they were just as curious as I was and there are so many ways to learn about polymers that are super fun!  So, I was super excited when I was asked to review Elmer's The World of Glue - a cross-curricular investigation of adhesives for grades K-5.   The kit includes the book Too Much Glue along with lesson plans, ideas, and glue (and not just the plain old regular glue, but the fun glitter glue as well)!

Along with the kit, Elmer's has developed the Elmer's Teachers Club which is free to join for both teachers and homeschoolers alike.  The site is filled with lesson plan and project ideas for all ages!

Included in the kit are all the items above

The book Too Much Glue by Jason Lefebvre
The World of Glue Activity Booklet (22 pages of educational bliss)
3 bottles of Elmer's glue (I received the original, the natural, and the glitter versions)

One of the first things we noticed when we opened the book was that it was signed by the author!  My boys were beyond THRILLED!
The book itself was amazing!

I loved the illustrations and I have had this experience with at least one of my boys!  We later learned the "Dot, dot, not a lot" poem really quickly!
In addition to the beautiful illustrations, the text is very engaging and suitable for all sorts of teaching topics.

Just a few that came to my mind:
                                                     *  Onomatopeia
                                                     *   Similes
                                                     *   Adverbs
                                                     *   Descriptive writing
                                                     *   Vivid Verbs
                                                     *   Rhyming
                                                     *  Making Predictions

After reading the book, the guide recommends that you ask your child if they have ever wondered how glue was made.  Then the scientific exploration begins! The guide gives several activities including making your own glue, reading a non-fiction passage about Elmer's Glue, comparing and contrasting the different types of glues, writing to the author, making a timeline, interactive notebook pages, and more!

You can download the activity guide for FREE here.

And... if you are super lucky, you can win the whole kit just like the one I received by entering the Rafflecopter below!  Good luck!

  a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Valentines Hidden Pictures Page Freebies

There is something motivational about coloring in a hidden picture!  Your kiddos will love this free division hidden number picture from MathWorksheets Land that is perfect for Valentine's Day.  Anytime you can get them to practice their math facts without whining is worth a million bucks to me!

Division Hidden Pictures Freebie

Color by Number - Freebie! Great for Valentine's Day or anytime of year! Use as morning work, a math center, homework, extra practice... whatever you'd like!
And for your little ones who are just learning their numbers, you can print out this freebie from the Busy Class On Teachers Pay Teachers.

Color by Number

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Highlights January 2014 Hidden Picture

Ring in the new year with this fun freebie from Highlights for Children.  Your kiddos will love hunting for the pictures as they build their concentration and attention to detail.

January 2014 Hidden Picture