Category Archives: Kindergarten

Links to FREE Stuff!

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Here are MANY links I’ve found that offer FREE homeschool stuff…we all know how much I LOVE * FREE * !!! [Please note: I cannot guarantee anything found on the sites.]

2 Teaching Mommies

ABC Teach Covers Pre-K, Elem & Middle School; All Subjects

An Old-Fashioned Education Mostly older students

Confessions of a Homeschooler lots of info

DLTK’s Growing Together Mostly Pre-K thru Elem

Daily Grammar 440 lessons covering parts of speech, parts of sentences, mechanics of grammar

Donna Young Free printable forms covering all subjects (this site is for mom)

Family Education All ages, subjects – has NEAT search option

Free Homeschool Printables Mainly Pre-K thru elem

Free Homeschool Resources Mainly Elem thru High School

Heart of Wisdom Pre-K up

Highland Heritage Forms Forms – this site is for mom

Home Grown Hearts – Pre-K thru 3rd grade, mostly

Homeschool Fever Pre-K thru High School

Homeschool-For-Free This is a site with links to other sites. I tried not to do these kind, but this one is pretty good. Looks like it covers Pre-K thru High School

Homeschool Helper Online Pre-K thru Elem

Homeschool Math 1st Grade up (has custom generated worksheets!)

The Home School Mom Mainly forms for mom

Homeschool Share (known as HSS) Toddlers thru Upper Middle School

Homeschool Views Mainly pages for mom

Homeschooled Kids Neat site with all kinds of different things, Elem & up

Home Schooling Unlimited Middleschool and above; mainly math and spelling

Hubbard’s Cupboard – Bible based! for pre-k and k.

Joy In Our Journey I use mainly for Latina Christina – a MUST HAVE for that curriculum!

Kids of Integrity from Focus on the Family Canada; mainly for younger kids age 3 – 10, focuses on Biblical character qualities

Link & Think all kinds of information (a lot of links that link to other sites; again, I don’t normally like to do this but this one has SO MUCH I simply had to post it). And a special THANKS! to Heather over at The Blessings Pour Out for letting me know about this site!

Notebooking Pages Mainly Elem and up

Oklahoma Homeschool Lots of forms for mom and mainly�items for Middleschool

Organized Home lots of free printable forms (this site is for mom stuff!)

PreKinders The name pretty much says it 🙂

Preschool Express lots of neat ideas for Pre-K!

Preschool Palace

Printable Homeschool Mostly forms for mom

The rambilings and adventures of a SAHM this site has an EXCELLENT, detailed Pre-School breakdown!

School Express K – Middleschool, mainly – all subjects

Shirley’s Preschool Printables

Starfall Pre-K thru 2nd Grade, mainly

Susan C Evans: Hands-On-Learning lots of info on many subjects and many ages

Tot School

Homeschool for FreeYou can also head over to the Schoolhouse Review Crew to find more Free Homeschool Resources!

Have a wonderfully blessed day!

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Schoolhouse Review ~ Spelling You See #hsreviews

Spelling You See ReviewHave you heard of Math-U-See? If you have read any of my curriculum listings you know we LOVE Math-U-See! Well, they now have a sister company! Spelling You See. And we had the opportunity to review Listen and Write (Level A) – which is the first level you can get (preliterate to phonics stage).  In this level students learn correct pencil grip, correct letter formation, consonants, and short vowels. It helps students integrate writing, reading, speaking and listening. It is meant to be a stand alone curriculum.

We received a pdf copy of the student workbook as well as the instructor’s workbook for the purpose of this review. (Please note: these are only available as PRINTED BOOKS at this time the pdf copies were simply to help with getting the information to us as reviewers.)

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 Their philosophy

“Those who set out to remember every letter of every word will never make it. Those who try to spell by sound alone will be defeated. Those who learn how to ‘walk through’ words with sensible expectations, noting sound, pattern, and meaning relationships, will know what to remember, and they will learn to spell English. ~ Edmund Henderson, 1990, Teaching Spelling p. 70″

I love that philosophy! It is not teaching them to “get through” it is teaching them to “work through” and THAT will last a lifetime! There are no word lists, spelling tests or memorizing words!

So…the program works with the first 4 Lessons (consisting of five sheets per lesson) being simply the student working on letters (as shown below). The top section has letters to write and the bottom section has words.The GREAT part…they are to work for ONLY TEN MINUTES…if they don’t finish, they don’t finish. (Which my son was normally done in about 3-1/2 minutes…he LOVED being timed and trying to beat his previous time. This was “bad” in the fact that his letters weren’t neatly done. But for him, who does NOT like to sit down and do worksheets…I was excited by the fact that he sat down and did them!) The bottom section is also where they work on the sounds of the letters…they are to say the SOUND of the letter as they write it.

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Then Lessons 5 & 6 start DICTATION. Here you (as the teacher) dictate the word to your student therefore helping them to further understand letter/sound recognition (with the vowel already noted). [The dictation words are provided in the instruction book.]

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In Lesson 7, they start reading the words back to you…this is where they start learning decoding.

For us, we did a worksheet a day (most days) and found the ten minute time frame to be perfect…P’s attention span is not long! Although he did his usual of “putting up a fight” prior to sitting down…once he sat down, he really enjoyed working on the sheets. They are quick and simple yet teach them a lot in a short amount of time. At the top, he writes his letters and then tells me what they are. At the bottom, I dictate the words now and he writes them and we work through any letters he may still be having difficulty with. It is really FUN to see him excited when he figures out a letter he is not sure about!

Early in this program my son said, “Can you teach me to read?” and I told him that is what we were doing with this program. Additionally, yesterday at church he told someone, “I am learning to read.” I love it that he appreciates this is a stepping stone to where he wants to be!

The complete program consists of 36 Lessons covering short vowels, blends and digraphs using three to five letter words. It is VERY EASY to understand and follow and requires LITTLE work from the teacher. (BONUS!) The Instructor’s Manual is 47 pages with a retail cost of $14.00, the student workbook is 183 pages with a retail of $20.00. You NEED both to use this curriculum.

Now…as a side note…it is my understanding that there are also stickers provided in the books…we did not get these since we received the pdf version [not actually for sale but were for review purposes only]…so that may be of additional interest to some.

We are planning to continue using this program as it is working really well for us.

There are currently five levels:

  1. Listen and Write (preliterate to phonics)
  2. Jack and Jill (phonetic to skill development)
  3. Wild Tales (continuing skill development)
  4. Americana (skill development using non-fiction)
  5. American Spirit (skill development using non-fiction people in history)

You can find out more by visiting Spelling You See here:

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/SpellingYouSee
Twitter https://twitter.com/spellingyousee

Now head over and read more Spelling You See reviews from the Schoolhouse Review Crew!

Here’s praying you have fun learning!

 

 

 

Crew Disclaimer

Schoolhouse Review ~ Science4Us.com #hsreviews

Science4Us Review 

We had the opportunity to review Science4Us.com Online Subscription (created by the same folks as VocabularySpellingCity!!) which is an online Science program geared toward grades Kindergarten through 2nd (but those in 3rd – 5th could use it as a review of previous things learned) and runs $7.95 per month per child. This program covers Physical Science (matter, energy, force & motion), Inquiry (science tools), Life Science (plants, animals, habitats, and more) and Earth/Space (history, materials, features, weather, exploring the universe and earth in space). I used this program with my Kindergartner.

There are two “sides” to this program…one for the student and one for the teacher. We will start with the student side.

This is what they see when they first login:

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The FIRST thing the students should do is watch the video in the upper left corner…it will show them how to navigate through the system.

After that they can see “My Assignments” directly in the middle (these are / can be assigned by the teacher). They can click on that, or they can choose one of the “Books of Science” in the upper right. They also can find out more information about where they have been and general terms by clicking something in the “My Tools” box on the left. As they complete the assignments given by the teacher, the “My Assignments” box changes too. So this is a very simple way for them to login and simply click the first item in that box to get started. Or if you aren’t particular where they work, they can click one of the books and get started.

It is suggested by Science4Us.com that they start with the top three circles in the lower right box with each topic: Engage, Explore, Explain – and they should be done in that order. From there they can do any of the activities they would like (also found in that same box). Each topic has an “Evaluation” they can take when they are done with that module.

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Above is a picture of what is being done in the “Engage” part for Science Tools. You can tell you are in “Engage” by the upper right box. As you can see, the pages are very colorful. The “notebook” is a place where the students can have a lot of fun and show some of their creativity. Often times they get to draw their own things using the available tools!

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Above is an example of “Explore”. We had a lot of fun with this one! It was showing motion…and the difference between curves, uphill and downhill. (The screens get more and more difficult as the student completes the one prior.)

Below is another example of “Explore”…it is really neat all the different activities this program has! Here the students drag the name to the correct place.

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And another explore example…this one was REALLY cool…you could move the picture around to see all different sides and planets. Then when you clicked on a planet it told you more about it. It was really neat!

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Here is an example of an “Explain” activity; you can see the different areas discussed by looking at the very bottom starting at the left.

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Below is one of our favorite activities…SillyBulls…the student gets to put the words in correct syllable order. One of the things I *GREATLY* appreciated about this program is that EVERY.THING “talks” to the child…it is understood that Kindergartner’s cannot read. Nothing frustrates me more than a program written for this age that doesn’t “talk” to them! So…I LOVED that about this program!

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And ANOTHER bonus to this program…it works on other things besides just Science!

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When it comes time to do the evaluations, the students get to see immediate results of how they did.

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As you can see this is a pretty amazing program with A LOT of different activities to help the students learn.

A couple of things we would have like to see handled differently are the fact that if you stopped an activity in the middle for some reason…you had to start all over at the beginning again (which for some of the “explain” activities can be quite a bit of time) and we would have liked to be able to know how long a video would be playing.

Overall, VERY IMPRESSED!

Now for the “teacher area”. This area is kind of basic although it does allow you to “drill down” pretty specifically on a particular student and what they have completed, it doesn’t really offer a very good “general overview” of how the students are doing. I think the most impressive parts of “this side” is that there is A LOT of information provided for the teacher and that you can plan out the activities for the students in any order you prefer (by student). [I only reviewed this with one student so I cannot comment on how it works for handling more than one.]

This is what the assignment area looks like on the teacher side. It shows near the top middle right how long this session is expected to take (most are in the area of 30 minutes). There is “Professional Development” in the lower left which provides information for this module that would be important for the teacher to know…this can be viewed as a pdf or as a video. There is also “Teacher Support” (middle right) which gives a guide to how to teach this module for a particular grade level. Here is where some additional fun, hands-on / off the computer, learning games can be found.

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Here is an example of one of the screens you can see for a student:
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You can also look at the students notebook entries…and MAKE COMMENTS!
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Overall we REALLY enjoyed this program and found it to be an extremely fun way to learn about science (as well as other things like alphabetizing)!

[As a side note that I always look for with Science related items especially – this is not a Biblical program therefore it shows millions of years. Personally we see this in so many things that we have found a way around it that we just don’t point it out (if it is visual) or make a quick noise to cover “millions of years” being said. But, I did want to share this information with you so you would be aware.]

Read more Science4Us.com reviews from the Schoolhouse Review Crew!

Here’s praying you have fun learning!

Crew Disclaimer

Schoolhouse Review ~ KinderBach #hsreviews

Kinderbach ReviewWe had the opportunity to review KinderBach which is an online piano lessons program offering lessons to children ages 3 – 7 (although it can be used for slightly above and below that as well). We were provided the “Online Piano Lessons with Teacher Corner” for this review. The only MUSTS for this is the use of a piano or keyboard (3 to 4 octaves or 36 to 48 full sized keys) and a computer or item to view videos (iPad, tablet, Kindle, Nook).

Do you think learning piano is just about music? THINK AGAIN! Here are some other things learning music helps with:

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The owner has it set up to where the students learn through a boy named Frisco and some animals friends he has. Along with a train station. So kids are easily entertained and their attention is kept through things that will be of interest to them. It isn’t just a “boring piano”…it is “Dody’s house” and “the train station”.

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They offer two separate programs: one for the classroom and one for the home. The home program is done simply by clicking the “next” button in the videos whereas the classroom program (aka Teacher Corner) offers A TON of information so the teacher has minimal work to do.

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I also found this information helpful in letting me know what “the point” was for the lessons…as someone who is not musically inclined, sometimes it is hard for me to know exactly. Here is an example:

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This program is VERY WELL DONE. I am not easily impressed and I am very impressed with this! The videos are engaging, the teacher is EXCELLENT at keeping their attention, the lessons are quick and easy and not too complicated (for anyone).

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When you first login you are taken to a page that allows you to pick which level you would like to go to:

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Once you pick which level you are taken to the next screen which allows you to pick where you want to start:

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Originally I was a little frustrated that the program didn’t save where we were so we would automatically pick it up at the same spot next time (as I am using this with only one child). Then I realized it is set up this way so that those with multiple students can easily go where they need to. Amazing – great thinking!

There are “maps” provided for each level so you can print them off and keep track of where each student is in the program – another AMAZING tool!

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Once you are taken to where you would like to start, you click the play button and away you go! Most often there is a page that needs to be printed with each lesson. Here is an example of the worksheets (they are exactly the same online and what you print – except what you print is black and white and what is on the screen is in color):

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Here is how they are taught to do three notes in a row (and then also “stair step up”), neat isn’t it?

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So…are you curious as to what will they learn?

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I’m sure you are extremely impressed by now and cannot wait to try it out with your student/s! If you want to try KinderBach out with your child…you can do that HERE with a FREE two-week trial!

Curious about the price? The home lessons are only $130 per YEAR. (Or $95.88 if you order by 2/28/14!). Think that is expensive? Think of the cost of most private lessons which are normally about $25 per THIRTY MINUTES! So, what I’m saying is…this isn’t a bad price! (Also, you can pay by the month if that works out better for you.) Prefer to use DVDs? You can do that too! Look HERE.

And, of course, other says to connect with KinderBach:

Facebook:  www.facebook.com/kinderbach
Facebook for Teachers:  www.facebook.com/classroomkinderbach
Twitter: @KinderBach
Pinterest: https://pinterest.com/KinderBach/
YouTube: KinderBach Preschool Piano

Please head over and read more KinderBach reviews from the Schoolhouse Review Crew!

Here’s praying you have fun learning!

 

 

 

Crew Disclaimer

Science ~ Magic School Bus Kit #1

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A couple weeks ago I saw that Homeschool Buyers Co-Op, which  has FREE membership, was having a half off deal for Magic School Bus Science Kits. About a year ago, we bought the set of Magic School Bus DVDs when they were on a really good sale and have enjoyed most of them so we had a pretty good idea that we would enjoy these too. (Side note: We are aware that MSB does not teach from a Biblical standpoint and have been paying attention to what needed to be removed or discussed so as to match our Biblical views).

Well, I am excited to share that we received our first Magic School Bus monthly kit! It comes with everything you need (except for things you would commonly find around your house).

This is what came in this months kit which is “The Human Body”:
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There are seven projects in this booklet to do for the month. Each project has its own “instruction page”. (We started with Experiment #2 as we do not have any 2-liter bottles at this moment, which are needed for Experiment #1).
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Here is what we needed for this project “beating heart”: We provided the cup, the colored water and the tape; everything else was provided in the kit.
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He used the pipette (which he LOVED!) to move the colored water [blood] from the cup to one of the balloons.
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After putting colored water in one balloon we taped both balloons to the straw (one at each end) and the little plastic person in the middle. The straw is to represent the blood flowing out in to the body and then back into the heart because as you squeezed the balloon it went through the straw to the other balloon.

This is our final “beating heart” (next time I will verify his “smile!” is a better smile LOL). Despite his facial expression…he really did enjoy this!
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Overall we LOVED this project. It was an EXCELLENT hands on way to learn and it kept my sons attention (something that is extremely difficult to do!). The only thing I would do different is to use better tape.

These are all the kits we will get for the year ~ one kit each month.
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We are super excited to do more of this month’s experiments as well as see what we will get in each of the other kits this year! More to come as we enjoy these!

Have a wonderfully blessed day!

Christmas Craft Fun

We’ve been having some Christmas Craft fun this week!

Snowman! Using paper plates, glue, cotton balls, felt and google eyes.

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Reindeer Finderprints!! Using brown paint, brown marker, construction paper and google eyes.

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Simple, easy and fun – our kind of crafts!

My son has the attention span of a gnat so this is about as much as we can do. *grin*

Have a wonderfully blessed day!

Schoolhouse Review ~ VocabularySpellingCity #hsreviews

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We received a VocabularySpellingCity Premium Membership in exchange for this review. This program is for K – 12 and we used it for both our PreK / K’r and our High Schooler (11th Grade). I think it is amazingly wonderful that you can use the same program for BOTH of these ages / grades!

I was extremely excited to get this review as I loved the online part as well as the many options it offered in both online regular learning and game learning options. Additionally, something that is always of great importance to our minimal income family…COST = REASONABLE! Only $29.95 per YEAR for a family (up to 5 students). LOVE! (There are also options for classrooms and schools…)

We worked on SAT words with J (high school) and Dolch Sight Words with P (PreK / K).

Here is a view of the “teacher screen”. As you can see, this is where you can add your students and that there are “Help” videos available.

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I *LOVED* the fact that you can print off handwriting sheets for your Pre-K / K words!

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This was neat, but was too advanced for my youngest:

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It takes a little while to understand how this program can work for your family. I would have liked if there would have been a bit better explanation as to how to start and what the options were. As it turns out, I fumbled around for quite awhile with it. With that said, there are some REALLY neat, fun things this program has to offer!

Student Assignments can be set up so when the student signs in they are directed which “way” to go. The student screen looks like this, with the assignment area at the top:

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The student can see their progress:

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Here is an example of the flashcards. It reads it to the student.

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The program offers (straight from their site):

  • An award-winning game-based learning tool for vocabulary, spelling, writing and language arts
  • A K-12 educational service used worldwide by schools and families
  • 50,000 words and 60,000 sentences read by a real person
  • Access via mobile app for your tablet and smart phone,or online via computer and interactive whiteboard
  • Correlation to educational standards
  • School and district-level reports

As you can see, the screens are very colorful adding a lot of fun to the program, especially for the younger ages.

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The students learn their word through online methods (mostly games – YAY!)

Letterfall was a favorite of ours: LetterFall. The mouse is to catch the next letter in the word (found in the lower left).

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As well as Hang Mouse (similar to Hang Man but with a cat and mouse):

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Here is where the student can work on alphabetizing. The words start out on the left and they move them to the right putting them in correct order. If they mistakenly move something, they simply click it on the right and it moves back to the left. Excellent, useful tool!

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Then it offers vocabulary testing:

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Here is what the report looks like:

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You can do A LOT *FREE* on this site. Here is a quick glance at the differences between free and paid:

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Once you figure out how to use the program (a lot of videos are provided to guide you, found under “Videos – FAQ”), this is an AMAZING TOOL I believe all students can benefit from.

Read more VocabularySpellingCity reviews from the Schoolhouse Review Crew!

Here’s praying you have fun learning!

 

 

 

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