All posts in Education

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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…

How do mirrors work? How are mirrors made?

How Do Mirrors Work? How Are Mirrors Made?

PickyKidPix broke her full length mirror, not once but twice. I hope that’s not 14 years of bad luck.  She hated the replacement mirror that my husband installed and wanted to replace it, yet again, herself.

How do mirrors work? How are mirrors made?

This mirror drama got my son thinking and asking about how mirrors work. I was hoping that he could build his own mirror as a science experiment, but it turns out that mirrors are quite complicated to make.

How do mirrors work? How are mirrors made?

Here’s how mirrors work:

When photons — rays of light — coming from an object (your smiling face, for example) strike the smooth surface of a mirror, they bounce back at the same angle. Your eyes see these reflected photons as a mirror image. from Wonderopolis Read more…

Mother's Day Card in Chinese

My Mother’s Day Card in Chinese Makes Me So Happy!

Grasshopper and Sensei started learning Chinese when she was in kindergarten. My neighbor tutored Chinese so it was easy to slip this in. I thought we were all set but then she moved away by the end of that school year.

Mother's Day Card in Mandarin Chinese

To continue their Mandarin, I put my girls into Chinese school for adopted Chinese babies. No one speaks Chinese at home. I was in Chinese school for one year when I was in elementary school and my siblings and I were the ONLY kids who spoke English at home. It was not a great experience.

After two years of this Chinese school, my girls wanted out. I hired another Chinese tutor who evaluated them to see what they knew. It turns out that my kids only knew how to count to 10 in Chinese. How could this be? I had sat through those Chinese classes while the teacher drilled flashcards covering the colors including silver and gold! They had been taking Chinese for more than three years!

Mother's Day Card in Mandarin ChineseRead more…

Watch, Learn, DO: DIY STEM Summer Camp

Watch, Learn, DO: DIY STEM Summer Camp

“STEM Education Is the Key to the U.S.’s Economic Future” is what you read about all the time. U.S. News and World Report says:

We need to encourage more students to pursue science, technology, engineering, and math.

And what about girls and STEM? President Barack Obama has something to say about that (as a father of two girls, he carries some weight!):

“One of the things that I really strongly believe in is that we need to have more girls interested in math, science, and engineering. We’ve got half the population that is way underrepresented in those fields and that means that we’ve got a whole bunch of talent…not being encouraged the way they need to.”

— President Barack Obama, February 2013 Read more…

Craftwhack's Tangle Art Book GIVEAWAY! 3 Winners!

Craftwhack’s Tangle Art Book GIVEAWAY! 3 Winners!

I think my most of my readers are familiar with Jeanette Nyberg …

We’ve done a holiday shopping guide together for the past few years …

She’s my daughter’s Art and Design School independent college counselor

She blogs at Craftwhack (with previous blogs Artchoo! and Tiny Rotten Peanuts) …

She’s got impeccable taste for the coolest stuff on the planet …

and

She’s really funny and fun!

Now, not surprisingly, she’s the author of a BRAND NEW amazing and fun art book for kids and parents:

Tangle Art and Drawing Games for Kids: A Silly Book for Creative and Visual Thinking by Jeanette Nyberg Read more…

Taking a Children's Book Writing Class

Taking a Children’s Book Writing Class

One of my New Year’s resolutions was to take a children’s book writing class so I signed up for one through my local community education program: Children’s Book Writing with Margo Lemieux. She teaches art at Lasell college but has also written children’s books. Interestingly, she has not yet illustrated her picture books. I found one of hers at my local library and it’s perfect for a spring diversity pick.

taking a children's book writing class with Margo Lemieux

Full Worm Moon by Margo Lemieux, illustrated by Robert Andrew Parker

Native American parents tell their eager children the story of the Full Moon Worm which brings the earthworms to the surface, helping prepare the ground for planting. They stay awake all night to catch this phenomenon, and thus the spring rituals of planting begin. [picture book, ages 4 and up]

Read more…