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Entries in school (7)

Monday
Jun142010

Help Kids Stay on Target with Summer Bridge Activities Books

School has not yet finished for us but I'm already working on how the girls will occupy themselves while I try to work in the mornings. One activity they love to play is school. I keep a selecting of their papers from the previous grade just for this purpose. Encouraging them to play school is not just for fun, however. As they play they are reviewing what they spent the last nine months learning!

Summer Bridge Activities Books Can Help with Summer Review

When I was approached to review the Summer Bridge Activites books I jumped at the chance. I was even given two different books for each daughter - a 1st to 2nd Grade workbook, and a 2nd to 3rd Grade workbook since the girls are learning some things at an advanced pace. The girls tore into them the day they arrived!

It was a school day...they had just spent 5 hours doing school work but couldn't wait to dig into these books!

What The Twofer and I like about the Summer Bridge Activities workbooks:

The books vary activities from page to page so drills are short and sweet.

The math activities are exactly what The Twofer were learning in school and even some new concepts to start looking at before they cover them in grade 2.

There are little reminders to get some exercise on every other page.

The books cover more than math and reading...there is science, social studies, reading comprehension, even grammar worksheets!

The Twofer loved the little stickers they can use to track their progress, and the certificate they'll get when they complete the books.

I loved the pull-out flashcards we can bring with us on car trips - not to drill them, I am soooo not like that, but just as another way to entertain them on the way to the beach.

The honest truth is that The Twofer LOVE to do this type of work. So why not offer it to them, encourage it, and have it around to occupy them this summer? 

You can see sample workbook pages for different grades HERE.

And you can purchase the Summer Bridge Activities books at Amazon for $10 - $15 and other online retailers.

Janine

Disclosure: I received two copies of each book at no charge from Summer Bridge for purposes of this review. All opinions expressed here are mine and this post was neither reviewed nor approved prior to publishing. Affiliate links are used in this post and a commission may be earned from a referred sale.

Monday
Jun072010

Summer Math Review Made Fun(er) with FlashCar

I've done some complaining here about math. I am not a math person and while the Twofer were in an advanced math this past year, I struggled to assist them.

Yes, I was failing first grade math. They, however, seemed to do ok.

If I don't want them to forget everything they learned (with no help from me) I'd better find ways to make it fun for them to review.

Enter Flashcar, an online math learning game

Flashcar is an online game where you compete with another drive (in our case your twin sister) or the computer in a race around a track. To move your race car you have to answer math questions correctly. If you get it wrong once you can try again. If you get it wrong twice your car stays put. If you don't answer before the timer is up you stay put as well so there is an added element of being timed.

What I liked about Flashcar:

1. The car race theme is fun and it's certainly more interesting to compete when you are reviewing math facts, than simply flipping over flashcards.

2. Being able to race against 3 other players means I may sit them down during a wild playdate to play. Nothing like math to slow down a couple of crazy kids after they've been running around the house!

3. The flashcard math is just that, simple math facts that include addition, subtraction, multiplication or division...no word problems that I saw.

4. There are different tracks and you can choose to go just one lap, or go around a few times to make the game even longer (see #2 as a reason to choose 3 or 4 laps).

There are three levels so you can progress as you practice: beginner (grades K-2 addition & subtraction), intermediate (grades 2-3 addition, subtraction, multiplication with no answer over 50) and Math Whiz (grades 3-4 multiplication and division no answer over 100). Flashcar costs just $14.95 per year for a subscription and they will donate a percentage of sales to your school's PTA or PTO.

Visit the Flashcar website for more information and to see a demo.

What other cool tools are you going to use to keep them learning this summer?

Janine

Disclosure: I received a free 60 day trial to review FlashCar. All opinions expressed here are mine and this post was neither reviewed nor approved prior to publishing.

Monday
May312010

Thank a Teacher, Help a Teacher with Donors Choose and Bing

Did you know...

Microsoft's search tool, Bing is one of the most popular tools for educational searches?

Bing knows that most teachers don't see or hear the appreciation they deserve, and yet this is what they most want. So, Bing has partnered with DonorsChoose.org to give kids a little incentive to show that appreciation.

Kids can go to Bing Education and leave a comment, give thanks, or tell a story about one of their teachers. When they do, they will have $5.00 of Bing's money and the power to decide how it should be donated at DonorsChoose. They can sort through various classroom projects that are in need and decide who they want to help most!

Don't be surprised if they decide they want to kick in a little something from their allowance money either as some of the projects are for very basic classroom needs in high poverty areas and their stories are touching. Good think Bing has said you can leave up to 5 comments...that's a $25 donation!

Check out Bing, and DonorsChoose.org for more inspiration.

Janine

Disclosure: I received a $100 DonorsChoose credit and $20 Amazon Gift Card for participating in this blog tour with Mom Central. All opinions expressed here are my own and this post was neither approved nor reviewed prior to publishing.

Monday
Mar082010

Review: GoGo SqueeZ - making school lunches got a little easier.

 

I dread the start of school and being a slave to school lunches. I resist buying the 'snack' size foods because they usually have too much sugar, salt, or preservatives and things that I can't pronounce

Recently I had the opportuniyt to try GoGo squeeZ squeezable, resealable, 100% fruit & applesauce snack.

Here's what I like about the GoGo SqueeZ snacks:

no spoon needed

I resist using plastic utensils for school lunches as much as possible because I'm a greenie in some ways and so for applesauce I give the Twofer real spoons that sometimes come home but always leave the inside of their lunchbox sticky. I mean, can't they lick it off?

 healthy and all-natural

Here's the list of ingredients for the apple-strawberry flavor: apple, strawberry, banana, apple juice concentrate, blackcurrant

No added sugar, or malthedexah;adjf;ksdhjf or hiuoieruwnfsd <-- stuff I can't pronounce.

neat, portable, non-perishable

That means it can sit on my pantry and I can grab one whenever i need it! No need for cooler thingies taking up room in the lunch box, and a perfect snack for the 'snack time' they have in their classroom (yes, our school does this for the younger kids and grades that eat later).

For more information on GoGo Sqeez products including where to buy you can visit their website, their blog, follow them on Twitter, and find them on Facebook.

What products help you make better school lunches?

Janine

Disclosure: I received GoGo SqueeZ samples to review at no cost. Opinions expressed here are mine and were not reviewed nor approved by GoGoSqueeZ prior to posting.

Wednesday
Feb172010

Contest: Your family can win $5,000 for dancing!

The Primrose Schools and Children's Miracle Network have partnered to get families moving and grooving to the tune of $5,000.

Let me explain....

Dancing for exercise and to win a prize

The Family Dance Off video contest is a great way to show families that dancing is not only fun, but a fun way to build some physical activity into your day, or night.

To enter to win all you have to do is make a 30 second video of your family dancing (hint, the sillier the better and knowing my friends here you guys can ham it up I'm sure...do me proud), register and upload it to http://www.familydanceoff.com/, then get your friends and family to vote for you.

Here's what you can win!

  • $5,000 grand prize
  • Wii Fit Bundle
  • FLIP Video camera
  • $30,000 donation to your local Children’s Miracle Network hospital

And of course if you win you need to share some of it with me - right? Like a finders fee?

Twofer dancing (sort of) at Disney

Start working on those dance moves

Want to see some of the competition? Visit the gallery of videos here. Then upload your own video and be sure to tell your friends, family, Twitter and Facebook buddies to start voting for you.

Heck, come back here and leave me a comment that you entered and I'll vote for you!

And keep dancing...for your heart, for the kids, and because frankly you look silly and that's what I love about you.

Janine

Disclosure: This blog post counts as an entry to win a gift card from Mom Select. All views and opinions with regard to the website or company are my own and are not influenced, nor reviewed by the company prior to posting.