Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Nature Study Find #1

This find doesn't require a purchase. It's a link to a fantastic blog about nature study. Yes the blogger has all kinds of nifty things you can purchased to use in your nature studies but you can do almost everything without needing all her nifty downloads and stuff. Sign up for her newsletters cause they offer more things to do. The blog is titled Handbook of Nature Study. She has nature study activities all year round. Yes including that season of winter where I'd prefer to stay inside where it is warm. Seriously this is one of the best done programs for nature study. You will not be disappointed.
When we first started this program I wasn't sure how we'd be at doing it so we just made little books from construction paper to record our studies on. However we are expanding to a nature log that we are buying from Rainbow Resources. This way we can have a nicer book that will last longer than our little cheap books we made lasted.
Here is a link to the June Newsletter.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Vocabulary Find #2

This vocabulary find focuses on those crazy idioms that are so confusing to kids. This stand up flip over book has 200 idioms to learn and understand. You know what idioms are, right? Well I didn't know these little sayings were called idioms until I discovered this little gem. Again no need to homeschool to make this work in your house. We learn a new one everyday. It's simple to use this little book. We stand it up on the computer desk and flip daily to learn a new idiom. Each each has the idiom at the top. Then it has a sentence using the idiom and a picture. Finally at the bottom it contains the What does it really mean which explains what the idiom really means. I've enjoyed watching the lightbulbs go off in the heads of my kids as they finally figure out what some of the phrases they have heard from adults make sense. And it's really fun to watch them use those idioms themselves correctly when talking to other adults. This sells for about $10 on Amazon.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Vocabulary Find #1, Phonics Find #1

Again a great find for those who homeschool or even want to reinforce what their kids are learning in school. This one is called Vocabulary Power reading Grade K. It also comes in grades 1, 2, and 3. My examples are from grade k. There are 150 sight words in this collection. It stands up so we left it on our school table during the day and reviewed throughout the day. The way we used it was to review one word a day. On the top is the word, which in the first picture is am. Next they use the word in a sentence and show a picture that relates to the word. Then at the bottom they have two additional words that are usually from the same word family and they use them in a sentence. Just a simple and slightly fun way to increase your child's sight word readings. Amazon carries these for $10 and some qualify in the book 4 books get one free promotion they run.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Logic Find #2

*****Well as someone pointed out I totally spaced placing the name of this game. It's Think Fun Hoppers. Guess one shouldn't post on her blog when she is suffering from food poisoning.

This turned into a fun way to test your brains thinking abilities. An added bonus is the back has the solution just in case you can't figure it out. They start out easy and work their way to really hard puzzles. All the pieces store inside the game board so it's really easy to clean up.
The goal of the game is to move all the frogs off the board except for the red one. You jump over frogs to remove them.  You use between 4-12 frogs with each card. The front of the card has the placement for the frogs and then you start moving them. My 6 year old's have made it to level 20 without any help from me.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Math Find #2

So you have a child who loves playing with things while learning? Well here is a perfect fit for that child. The book is called Math Gears. As you can tell from the pictures each page has a dial that you move around to get a new addition/subtraction/multiplication/division problem then you lift the tab to check your answer. Facts start at 1 and go to 12. Great way to help little minds learn their facts. The cost is about $8 on amazon and worth the money if you ask me.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Geography Find #2, Math Find #1 and Logic Find #1

It's a game titled Ticket to Ride and again it's not just something for homeschoolers. The recommended ages are 8 to adult BUT my 8 and 6 year old's love the game. We just change the rules a bit for the younger ones but even they are starting to play like the adults. The one we have has a map of the USA and Canada with major cities randomly selected. Geography ties in because you have to find your cities and then you learn the names of the cities in between. Logic ties in because you have to think and plot your moves. Math ties in because you have to count many times in the game. Read this review on the game and you'll see just how much fun it can add to a school day or family game night.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Geography Find #1

Geopuzzles! You don't even need to homeschool to enjoy these. It's a fun way to learn all the countries in the world and their location. I own all of the puzzles except for the full world one. The Africa one is missing from the photo collection above because I can't remember where I placed it after cleaning up the last time. Anyway the kids love helping to put the puzzles together and they love timing themselves to see if they can beat their previous time. Also they are getting really good at knowing the general location of where each country goes. It's a simple yet fun way to learn about the world and where places are located.

The puzzle tried to shape each country as it is in real life. Sometimes the bigger countries get put together in several pieces and sometimes smaller countries are put together so the pieces are super tiny. As a warning the pieces do not fit like traditional puzzles and if having an exact fit puzzle you will be disappointed. One thing we do is read the names of all the countries and then I have the kids leave the room. I then remove a few countries and see if the kids can remember the names of the missing ones. My kids are 8 and 6 and while they don't get them all correct they do better than the neighbors 12 year old who learned world history last year in school.

I think these would be the perfect supplement and possibly a full on curriculum for learning world countries and geography. The price on these puzzles run from $7-15 on amazon, not a bad price for hours of fun and learning.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

What's coming up on the blog!

I plan on giving some reviews on products we used throughout the year for our schooling. So stay tuned for that all my homeschooling friends. I do have a few really fun things that we have loved. Curriculum, puzzles, games, and books. I'll cover it all while getting ready for a new year of homeschooling in the fall.