Archives

Typing/ Keyboarding

key_homeWith so many students having to do distance learning this year, teaching typing would be a terrific benefit to them.

Here are some typing programs worth considering purchasing:

Typing Instructor for Kids This is the program I used with my sons. It has lessons, accuracy tests, and games to help them learn.

Jump Start Typing This computer typing program is for children in grades 2-5 and includes video clips for hand placement. We used this program as well, but the boys for the most part, had already learned the keyboard and this was reinforcement if they wanted more games to play. I know, extra-cautious homeschool mom syndrome ūüôā

Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing is a classic computer program that would appeal to older students (junior and senior high school).

Online Typing Programs

Online Keyboarding Education is a terrific program that students of all ages will enjoy. I played a few games and also brushed up on my typing accuracy while having fun at the same time. Thanks to two wonderful readers for suggesting this program!

Typing Web This is a FREE online program for typists of all ages and abilities. You can even print a certificate when you finish.

Typing Club is a free online typing program and has helped 23,000,000 students. That’s a lot of flying fingers over keyboards!

Dance Mat Typing is free and is offered through BBC so it has a Scottish accented sheep who is your typing instructor. It is for younger students, but the children are entertained with animated animals that rock n’ roll. That may not be what you are looking for in regards to learning to type as I noticed it can be distracting. If not, you can try one of the other programs.

I wanted to thank Justin for sending me some amazing websites for more online typing options: 

Keyboarding Basics You are sure to find a typing program that will interest your son or daughter on this website.

Learning to Type More Efficiently  This has typing education to help you with your typing skills and typing tests.

A special thanks to Mary Anne N for sending me all of these cool websites for typing. https://www.wristbandexpress.com/content/wrist-hands-and-fingers-proper-typing-techniques/

~Kjwq

oOps! I meant…

~ Lisa~

National Chocolate Day

images

Sunday, October 28 is the National Chocolate Day, so why not join the celebration and at the same time make it a learning experience?

Chocolate Sampling

You will need to purchase the following types of chocolate for sampling: unsweetened, milk chocolate, white chocolate, dark chocolate

Break up into pieces each of the different types of chocolate and put them on individual plates. Have each person close their eyes and sample a piece of each type of chocolate. Have everyone rate them from 5 being their favorite to 1 being the least favorite. Reveal to your participants what each type of chocolates was and tally the points each received. You could create a bar graph for math with each of the chocolates.

images-1.jpg

How Chocolate is Made (Science) 

Chocolate comes from the seed of the tropical Theobroma cacao tree.  Cacao, which has been cultivated for at least three millennia, is grown in Mexico, Central America, and Northern South America.  The earliest known documentation of use, of cacao seeds, is around 1100 BC.  The cacao tree seeds have a very intense bitter taste that must be fermented to develop the flavor.

Once the seeds have been fermented, the beans are then dried, cleaned and roasted.  After roasting, the shell is removed to produce cacao nibs.  The cacao nibs are then ground into a cocoa mass which is pure chocolate in rough form.   The cocoa mass is usually liquefied then molded with or without other ingredients, it is called chocolate liquor.  The chocolate liquor may then be processed into two components: cocoa solids and cocoa butter. 

Screen Shot 2018-10-14 at 7.26.45 PM

  • Unsweetened baking chocolate¬†‚Äď ¬†cocoa solids and cocoa butter in varying proportions.
  • Sweet chocolate¬†‚Äď ¬†cocoa solids, cocoa butter or other fat and sugar.
  • Milk chocolate¬†‚Äď sweet chocolate with milk powder or condensed milk.
  • White chocolate¬†‚Äď cocoa butter, sugar, and milk but no cocoa solids.
  • Dark chocolate- cacao beans, sugar, emulsifying agent

Some good news about dark chocolate if eaten without any milk: it can lower your blood pressure; it has a large number of antioxidants. Now, that is good news!:)

Language Arts How about having your daughter or son create a story about chocolate or reading this book? (Click on the book to go to the link.)

Screen Shot 2018-10-14 at 7.38.16 PM

Geography

Using the chart of the top ten producers of cacao, locate the countries on a map. Have your son/ daughter read the number aloud to reinforce place value. (math)

Screen Shot 2018-10-14 at 7.27.31 PM

Culminating Activity- Make a chocolate dessert. This can be cookies, pie, ice cream, a malt… There are limitless possibilities, aren’t there?

Enjoy!  ~Lisa~

3 Great Book Series for Middle Schoolers

Screen Shot 2018-01-01 at 10.18.39 PM

Woo! Hoo! I am excited to share these series that are terrific for middle school students.  Not only are they each fantastic books, but you can let your bookworm read these without worrying about bad language or inappropriate scenes. You can even use these for read alouds for your entire family.

IMG_3995Goodreads recommended the first book, Mice of the Round Table and I am so glad that I read it! This is a fabulous and imaginative tale (tail) of the beasts that live in the kingdom of Camelot who must unite to defend and protect the kingdom of both man and animal against an evil force. I am really looking forward to reading the next book, Voyage to Avalon. 

IMG_3982

My niece¬†recommended the book, Escape from Mr. Lemoncello’s Library. This book was not only fun to read, but it is set in Ohio and in a library (two things that are dear to me). Twelve¬†lucky students are selected to have an exclusive overnight preview of the new town library that Mr. Luigi Lemoncello, an eccentric game creator has designed for the town. The catch is that once the students are there, they must use clues from library¬†resources to be able to get out. I loved the references to other great books that were throughout the story. A bonus is at the end where there is a list of other books mentioned to read as well. There are also some word puzzles and sneak peaks of books that follow. Other books in the series include Mr. Lemoncello’s Library¬†Olympics, and Mr. Lemoncello’s¬†Great Library Race.

IMG_3997

Peter and the Starcatchers is a book about who else but Peter Pan? This is the story of how Peter arrives in Neverland and the adventures that await him and his friends. There are sword fights, mysterious happenings, and treachery, along with loyalty, bravery, and selflessness. I am eagerly looking forward to reading the other two books in this series, Peter and the Shadow Thieves, and Peter and the Secret of Rundoon

Homeschool Subjects to Teach

images

Reading, writing, arithmetic are the core topics for your school, but what do you need to teach besides these three? The best place to check would be your state’s homeschool laws because when you notify the school officials most states require specific topics to be studied. If you are teaching here in Ohio these are the topics that are required:

(a) language, reading, spelling, and writing;

(b) geography, history of the United States and Ohio; and national, state, and local government;

(c) mathematics;

(d) science;

(e) health;

(f) physical education;

(g) fine arts, including music; and

(h) first aid, safety, and fire prevention.

It looks like a long list and you may be wondering how to cover all of them. This week I will concentrate on these subjects¬†and how to schedule them. The good news is you do not need to teach every subject every day. Of course, the 3 R’s, as they are frequently referred to (Reading, Writing, Arithmetic), need to be taught daily due to the amount of information that is taught and learned.

Social Studies, Science  If you have purchased a textbook and it is for an entire school year, then you will need to teach each of these subjects daily. But, if you have not and you have junior high or younger students, Social Studies and Science can be covered by dividing them throughout the week. For instance, you can teach Social Studies on Monday and Wednesday and teach Science on Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday, or vice versa depending upon your curricula or topics you are studying for the year.

Health, Physical Education These subjects can be taught once a week and can actually be incorporated together since many times when you are discussing health topics you include physical education.

Fine Arts This too can be taught once a week.

First Aid, Safety, and Fire Prevention The first two topics can be taught in conjunction with Health and Physical Education since you discuss injury prevention and naturally teach first aid as you care for scrapes and bruises. Fire Prevention needs to only be taught a few weeks for the entire school year and reviewed as necessary.

These are only recommendations and you can teach subjects as you like since there is nothing stated by law on how many days you teach or how much time you spend on each one. However, keep in mind that you are preparing your son or daughter to one day leave your home and be able to support themselves. Lay a strong, solid educational foundation for your student. The world job market is highly competitive and employers are looking for well-educated people to¬†work for them. You are the perfect teacher to equip your scholar to succeed. ūüôā

Looking ahead: Next week I will give you some ideas on how to teach each of these subjects. The following week I will discuss teaching high school subjects. 

 

 

 

Illness: How to Keep Going

box-of-tissues

I have had one of those lingering colds where you just can’t seem to find the energy to do even the simplest of tasks. Teaching, doing lesson plans, cleaning the house and going grocery shopping seem like insurmountable tasks. I need a backup plan to get through this time. I am sure you have been there too.¬†One piece of advice that I would like to give to you is to plan ahead in the event that you might not feel well sometime during the school year. So, while I am less foggy-headed, I thought I’d write some ideas that you can use if you find yourself under the weather.

Math

Here are some websites for math worksheets that will help your student stay on track and review concepts.

Homeschool Math

Math Drills

Soft School 

Looking for educational videos? Here are a few that I think your children will like.

Brain Pop It has some free videos and quizzes on a variety of topics for your daughter to take after she watches them. You can assign one or more depending upon your need. If you enjoy what is offered, you can sign up for a year’s subscription.

Social Studies

Liberty’s Kids¬†are great for American history that I think your son will enjoy. They are well animated and would be great to use.

Ducksters has a variety of articles and games that are interesting that include topics of geography, science, and history.

Board and Card Games can also be educational as they teach children to do some of the following: Read and follow directions, strategize (checkers, chess, tic-tac-toe, Sorry, Monopoly), count money (Life, Monopoly), and add (Yahtzee, card games).

Educational Online Games

Sheppard Software would be a way of reviewing all sorts of topics.

 

Stay well!

~Lisa