All posts in Education

DIY STEM Paper Circuits: Light Up Cards & GIVEAWAY

DIY STEM Paper Circuits: Light Up Cards & GIVEAWAYS

This STEM project teaches kids about circuits and electricity. Because there are tiny parts, I recommend it for ages 10 and older. This coincides nicely with 5th grade Core Curriculum circuits as well.

There are a few hurdles for doing this project. To make it easier for my readers to do this science project, I’m giving away some kits of the harder to procure parts. See the Rafflecopter below to win.

This Paper Circuit STEM project is also in Make: Start Making! A Guide to Engaging Young People in Maker Activities by Danielle Martin and Alisha Panjwani. I’m also giving away a copy of this book. To win this book, please leave a comment.

Step 1: The Materials

Some of the materials you’ll probably have around the house: clear tape, scissors, paper/card stock/construction paper (card stock is best), and binder clip (nice to have but not necessary).

DIY STEM Paper Circuits: Light Up CardsRead more…

3D Printing: Teen Makes His Own Invisalign

3D Printing: Teen Makes His Own Invisalign

Two of my kids are taking a 3D printing class this summer through Id Tech camp. My daughter’s orthodontist does not recommend making your own Invisalign as there might be issues with jaw alignment that requires more than moving your teeth.

3D Printing: Teen Makes His Own Invisalign

Images from CNN Money

Still, this college student, Amos Dudley, used a 3D printer to make his own Invisalign and successfully moved his teeth. My husband was impressed enough to send me this article from CNN Money.

College student makes own invisalign

Images from CNN Money

He usedNew Jersey Institute of Technology’s equipment to scan and print models of his teeth, and mold non-toxic plastic around them to form the set of 12 clear braces.

Here’s the video.

Summer Reading Programs & Free Books for Kids

Summer Reading Programs & Free Books for Kids

I’ve rounded up FREE literacy resources for parents to get their kids reading. First, I found summer reading programs that your kids can enter to win prizes including free books. Next, I searched for free books — the good kind — and weeded out the weird sites with books that I’ve never heard of. Finally, I found fun literacy activities like book trailers, a site to make your own story book, and a contest to shoot your own 90 second Newbery book movie.

Happy reading this summer! What else do you need to get your kids reading?

p.s. Photos featured are from my Caught in the Act of Reading program. Parents sent me their photos of kids caught reading and I sent them a book. I will continue this program until I run out of books. Just email me your photos at PragmaticMomBlog gmail and I’ll send you a book (1 per family).

kids reading

Summer Reading Programs

Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge for kids, educator and parents. Kids:

  • Read & log minutes all summer
  • Unlock stories & earn rewards
  • Enter for a chance to win Klutz books!

photo

Barnes & Noble Summer Reading Triathlon. The Barnes and Noble summer reading program for kids gives kids a free book when they read 8 books over the summer. The choices of books are: Read more…

STEM Science Project: DIY iPhone Microscope

STEM Science Project: DIY iPhone Microscope

I’m trying to do more science experiments with my son. We made a homopolar motor, learned about electricity with PlayDoh and LED lights, built a gamer remote control, made a 3D hologram projector, created a protective device for a raw egg, learned about the science of Ramune Japanese soda, and wondered why ice cubes crack in drinks.

I’m always looking for fun and easy science experiments so this DIY Phone Microscope got my attention. The video below made it sound easy: Read more…

Can You Spot Him? A real life Halibut Jackson

Can You Spot Him? A real life Halibut Jackson

My husband and I delighted in reading a picture book to our kids about a shy man named Halibut Jackson who made specially crafted outfits designed to blend into his environment.

Halibut Jackson by David Lucas

Halibut Jackson is shy and doesn’t want to be noticed so he makes special outfits designed to blend into the background. He has a flowered suit for the park, a book-patterned suit for the library, and a fruit-adorned suit for the shops. When he gets invited to a party with the king and queen, he’s excited to go. But how was he to know it’s a garden party?! Everyone notices Halibut Jackson. And everyone notices his marvelous suit. They all want one too. Now Halibut Jackson has a new profession, and he’s a little less shy! [picture book, ages 4 and up]

My husband recently was excited to discover a real life Halibut Jackson, Chinese artist Liu Bolin. Can you spot him? Read more…

povi

Teach Kids Social-Emotional Skills with Povi

A study in the American Journal of Public Health found that early social competence was a consistent, significant predictor of outcomes in education, employment, criminal justice, substance use, and mental health. In fact, for every one-point increase in a child’s social competence score, he or she was:

  • Twice as likely to attain a college degree
  • 54 percent more likely to earn a high school diploma
  • 46 percent more likely to have a full-time job in early adulthood

While we might agree that social-emotional skills are THE key predictor for future success for kids, we parents might scratch our heads and ask how do we make sure our kids are learning these key skills? A new Kickstarter campaign for Povi might help. Read more…

Newton's 3 Laws of Motion for Kids Using Soccer

Newton’s 3 Laws of Motion for Kids Using Soccer

I remember how much I struggled in physics. It never really made sense to me. I didn’t want my kids to have this same experience so I thought I’d expose them earlier so that they would have a more intuitive feel for Newton’s Laws of Motion, the foundation of physics.

To make physics fun and relatable, I thought I’d use soccer to illustrate Newton’s three laws of motion. My son demonstrates here and there’s another animated cartoon below on Newtonian physics in space.

How about you? Do your kids gravitate towards the sciences?

Read more…

#ChooseReading with Speakaboos GIVEAWAY (3 Winners!)

#ChooseReading with Speakaboos GIVEAWAY (3 Winners!)

I’m excited to share a reading app with you called Speakaboos, and I’m giving away 3 FREE 1-year subscriptions worth $69.99 each (see below)!

Kids will #ChooseReading with the Engaging Speakaboos Reading App

Speakaboos is the reading app for kids 2-6 that turns screen time into reading time. With over 200 stories — both well known picture books and stories that Speakaboos developed — kids can read along with an engaging animated version of the book.

The words light up as the words are read aloud and this helps teach kids to learn how to read! It’s not surprising that this literacy app is well thought out. Speakaboos is developed by renowned educational media experts including Dr. Alice Wilder, Chief Learning Officer for Speakaboos and one of the world’s leading authorities on literacy through media. You might know her through her popular TV shows Blue’s Clues and Super WHY!

Read more…

Save 25% on Summer Bridge Workbooks!

Save 25% on Summer Bridge Workbooks!

This post was sponsored by Carson-Dellosa as part of an Activation for Influence Central. I received complimentary products to facilitate my review.

This summer in addition to the math word problem workbook that I usually do with my kids, I’m adding the Carson-Dellosa Summer Activities workbook for my 5th grade son. He usually can finish his math word problem book in a month, and while it does cover reading comprehension, I wanted to add a few more subjects to get him reading for middle school this fall.

Carson-Dellosa Summer Activities workbook

My son likes math and science and I’ll be working on some hands on science activities for him as well. But I’d also like my son to work on his writing, and I didn’t really have a plan for that so this activity book is perfect.

I also want my son to continue the reading tear I’ve just begun to see. In past years, it would take us a month to read a book (sometimes even more). Lately, he’s been able to read a chapter book in a few days which is also keeping me on my toes to find books to interest him. Read more…