Archive for December, 2014

My best post of 2014

Top 5 Posts of 2014 Countdown: #1

Thanks for your patience with our countdown! MaryAnne of MamaSmiles and I are counting down our Top 5 Posts of 2014 and we are down to our number one post!

My number one post for 2014 is …

10 Perfect Read Aloud Books for 3rd Grade with 36,212 views.

I met Colby Sharp, co-founder of The Nerdy Book Club, last year at an author dinner for Anne Ursu in Boston and then again at The Nerdy Book Club meet up. He’s a teacher in rural Michigan where kids don’t own any books and he had moved grades to teach 3rd grade. My son was in third grade at the time, and we bonded over our love of perfect chapter books for third grade. As we listed our favorites, we noticed with delight that they were the same. Hence, this post was born!

Read more…

Top 2 Post of 2014 MamaSmiles PragmaticMom

Top 5 Posts of 2014 Countdown: #2

MaryAnne of MamaSmiles and I are counting down our Top 5 Posts of 2014 together. If you are new to blogging and wonder how to get a post to go viral, I would say that it’s an unpredictable business.

I would suggest — and I hope MaryAnne would agree with me — to write each post as if it will be the time someone is reading your blog … because, it very well might be! Also, write for yourself not for a phantom reader that you hope to attract. Even if you answer one reader’s question, chances are many others are wondering the same thing or struggling with the same issue you might be having at home with your kids.

Bloggers out there — can you please share advice on writing a popular post? Thank you! Read more…

Top 3 Post of 2014 MamaSmiles PragmaticMom

Top 5 Posts of 2014 Countdown: #3

MamaSmiles and I are counting down our Top 5 Posts of 2014!  We hope you are enjoying our countdown as we wind the year down! What are your plans for the New Year?

My #3 post is Newbery Winners by Grade Appropriateness! with 16,684 views for the year.

The impetus for this post is also the reason why I started blogging. Because my favorite chapter book in the whole world is Because of Winn Dixie by Kate DiCamillo, I handed my oldest, then in third grade, another award winning book, Tiger Rising without reading it first. Oops! It was way too depressing. Thus, I learned the hard way that even Newbery books need to be screened. I also update this post as I read the books.

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Top 5 Posts of 2014 Countdown: #4

MaryAnne of MamaSmiles and I are counting down our top 5 posts of 2014 together. Why? It’s fun to see what jives on different-yet-similar blogs. The year end is also a time of celebration and rejuvenation for another year of blogging. And I would argue that a blogging year should be counted like dog years!

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Top 5 Post of 2014 MamaSmiles and PragmaticMom

Top 5 Posts of 2014 Countdown: #5

I’m counting down my Top 5 Posts of 2014 with MaryAnne of MamaSmiles. I was fortunate to be able to meet with her a few times when she still lived in Massachusetts and I was able to see her once this past year in Calfornia at a blogging workshop for Multicultural Kids Blogs. I love her blog on joyful parenting and no one helps me to focus on gratitude more than she!

I hope you enjoy our countdown together! Read more…

Making Math Fun!

Making Math Fun!

Please welcome my guest blogger, Michele Williams, Ph.D., who has a math tutoring company. Today she will be sharing tried-and-true ideas for making math fun for kids!

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I can’t think of anything more rewarding than tutoring, especially in math. That’s why I spent nights and weekends helping family and friends with math during my years as an engineer, and it’s why I eventually made the transition to tutoring full time. What could be better than helping a child go from “I can’t do fractions” to “Fractions are fun!”? Read more…

25 Random Acts of Kindness Advent Calendar

Our 25 Random Acts of Kindness Advent Calendar

First of all, I have to say that December is a crazy busy month to attempt to complete 25 Random Acts of Kindness for our family. We are busy and stressed out and giving back isn’t top of mind. Which is why this is so good for us!

25 acts of kindness advent calendar that you make yourself

It’s almost easier to do an Act of Kindness as it is to keep track of it. And forget getting everyone in my family to complete one per day. I think that is a great goal but not feasible for us right now. Completing one a day as a family will have to do.

So my upshot is: do it but be kind to yourself. Good enough is … good enough. Even thinking about doing an Act of Kindness every day is an improvement for us so baby steps! Read more…

Writing for Reluctant Readers by Ty Drago

Writing for Reluctant Readers by Ty Drago

Please welcome my guest blogger today, author Ty Drago of The Undertakers series. He’s giving advice based on years of school visits on how to get reluctant readers writing.

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I often tell people that I “scare children for a living.”

It’s a cute, funny thing to say — and it’s true, given the fact that my claim to fame is a series of horror novels written for middle grade kids (ages 10 and up). Read more…

Science of Flu for Kids

Flu Season Science for Kids

PickyKidPix 7th grade science started off with microbes and how the immune system works. Despite this information, she still doesn’t understand why she needs to get an annual flu shot. I found some great videos and a picture book to help kids understand Flu Season Science!

Flu Season Science

PickyKidPix’s 7th Grade Science Unit on Micro Organisms.

How do vaccines work with our immune systems to keep us from getting sick? Watch this 2 minute video from NOVA PBS, Immunity and Vaccines Explained, to learn how germs get killed by our immune system. After you watch this video, see if you can answer the question below.

Flu Season Science

How cells reproduce from PickyKidPix’s 7th Grade Science Class. Read more…