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Thursday, February 23, 2012

Easy Ways to Teach Numbers and counting

Looks like a double post Thursday.I hope you all like the resources I have put together.My daughter was always fond of numbers.Most kids learn their ABC's 1st she learnt numbers first .
Her favorite product was a sesame street electronic number learning toy.Then as she grew she started to love coloring sheets ,dot to dot activities and mazes.It was easy making a book of her favorite printable activities esp on days when we knew she had to be busy like the Dr's office or a boring weekend party! So here are some ways to introduce numbers to your young child

Easiest way to teach is when you go up and down the stairs start to count
and very soon your child will do it with you.
Count and eat blueberries,raisins, marshmallows,cheerios and m&m's,Of course the advantage with m&m's is you can even teach color's.

Find some connect the dots printable where there are plenty of numbers,
here is a source I have used extensively

You can teach number counting with these sheets and then let you child color it
in then you teach them colors too !!!
Here is another printable for tracing numbers

Here are some neat books .
This one for a under age 2 ,remember to choose colorful sturdy picture books .I love the colorful foam shapes of this

Here is 1 for the above age 2 set that my daughter especially enjoyed

Here is 1 for the 4 and up age group

Again there are many many books to choose from, I don't list popular character books because
I find the general books to be more long lasting ,less gender specific esp if the favorite character is not so much of a favorite after a while or with your other kids and if you are like me and tend to keep the books forever and ever ,most character books I have found lose their novelty factor very fast.
In my many years of book buying esp the character ones its only Blues Clues that held up high interest at our house!


I want to homeschool my preschooler!

I have heard this remake a few times and it always made me want to correct the person saying it!No your not homeschooling a toddler or a preschooler you are just teaching them.
I think there is some kind of a difference, it's very common for infants/toddlers/preschoolers to be at a library story time, playgroups, learning . Then at age 5, most of those kids are enrolled in kindergarten, and the others whose parents choose to teach them at home are home schooled. Wouldn't it be odd if the parents who enroll their kids said they home schooled for five years?
On the other hand there are some families who decide to home school their children much before the kids are school age and they want to plan and implement a home school program for their young kids.
Generally speaking (YMMV) you can start the term,"homeschooling" at the age a child is legally required to go to school and doesn't include preschool or pre-K activities!It's really not a very big deal but it sure is annoying when people say that!I'll get off my soap box now.
Happy Thrusday!

Friday, February 17, 2012

Bird watching weekend!

We are hoping to do some bird watching and participate in the great backyard bird count.The description is below.

The Great Backyard Bird Count is an annual four-day event happening from today 2/17 to 2/20/2012 that engages bird watchers of all ages in counting birds to create a real-time snapshot of where the birds are across the continent. Anyone can participate, from beginning bird watchers to experts. It takes as little as 15 minutes on one day, or you can count for as long as you like each day of the event. It’s free, fun, and easy—and it helps the birds.
There are many interesting books to read about birds and this 1 book is about John James Audubon, The French-American ornithologist known for his expansive studies of American birds.

And if you are looking to add an activity to this book here is a fantastic coloring book.This 48page and 10 inch book by Dover publication has very nice images to color.There is a description on each page to tell you more about the bird you are coloring.

Here is 1 book we use also by Dover this is a 64 page coloring book ,with a slight difference than the one 1 listed above.Its birds and flowers of all 50 states and of course includes the Bald Eagle.

And if you want something free here is a link to a few free worksheets!


Wednesday, February 15, 2012

One goal different methods

One very big important thing home schooling has taught me is there is more than 1 way to teach and more than 1 way to learn.I am not bound by following any 1 curricula. I can use any book software, and method I desire to teach my children with.If 1 method fails we move on to another and another.Or stop teaching that topic for a while and go try with something entirely new. I am also trying to integrate projects with the curriculum.
I also do a lot of research on what my children might be interested in adding to the books we use.I like to read everything that I find useful and find the product that works for the kids.Well some have been a huge hit some not so much but the good part of this is we never stop trying .
I hope to talk more in future posts about all that way have used and what worked for us and what I tweaked to make it our own!

Monday, February 13, 2012

Why Home school?

Do I NEED a reason to home school?

Many many many times I have been asked questions about why we home school the kids when there are these wonderfully free public schools that my kids can go to!
Well wishers completely floored by our family's decision.Asking me," Is something wrong with the kids?
Is it the school?
Some seemed genuinely curious,some outright upset.
Some going as far as telling me how I don't have the right education to teach my children!
My kids were at one point in a public school they were completely miserable.Yes most kids do hate school ,but mine did everything to keep themselves happy But the real issue was they were not being challenged, yes they were making the grade,had great teachers who did the best with the resources they had.It just was not enough! After a lot of soul searching I realised that I wanted the best for my kids. I wanted them to have a better education than I had. I didn't want them to go through the horror that was school for me.I loathed my middle and high school years.I did have a lot of potential but it was squashed by having a lousy set of teachers and circumstances at home were not favorable for me to change many things in my life .Looking back there are many things (including school) I wished I could have changed in my life since its too late now all I can do now is only forge ahead .I do so by recognizing the signs that my kids show.Sending them to public school was easy ,taking them out and doing something no one else I knew was doing was a tough decision and 4 years into it I don't have a day that I have regretted that decision!
So, while others are waiting to hear a valid reason for our choice, I say,we do it because it is something we want to and enjoy doing .I know its not for everyone and if you don't home school I don't think I would want you to feel guilty about it!It's just a matter of choice.

About Me.

Who Am I?And what the heck am I going to talk about ?
I am a Sahm to my 2 kids both of whom I home school.We do it by choice. We love the freedom homeschooling has given us.We do a great number of things in a day!Apart from homeschooling I have several interests and passions,some of them have all but disappeared partly because I am short on time, & partly because I moved onto other things.
I hope you will come along with me on this journey where I hope to share with you the wonderful books,kits,websites and apps that have helped our journey so far.For the record all our curriculum choices are secular,there may be an author here and there that have a creation bent,if so it did not reflect in their material .
I am also a passionate supporter of and jefferymodell foundation and