All posts in 4) Grade 3-5

James Patterson Middle School Worst Years of My Life reluctant boy readers getting boys to read PragmaticMom Pragmatic Mom

How to Get Your Kid to be a Fanatic Reader

Nurturing a Love of Reading in Your Child

Author James Patterson is revered as a god of fantasy adventure at my house. My oldest is a devoted fan and I am now resigned to pre-ordering his books for her. That he writes about reaching the middle school reluctant reader AND provides an amazing list of tempting books is music to my ears.

Authors who reach out to reluctant readers through their work deserve a special place in heaven! Thank you James Patterson! Read more…

40 Most Common Chinese Characters Evolution of Chinese Mandarin Characters PragmaticMom

Learning Mandarin Chinese Words, 40 Most Common Characters

Learn Chinese Words: 40 Easy Characters

This is from my oldest child’s Chinese teacher at school. These are the 40 most common Chinese characters. The chart shows the pronunciation, stroke order, and how the character is used in other, more complicated characters. Try drawing these with a calligraphy brush and a Chinese ink stone. Read more…

reading, special needs, chapter books, rick riordan

4 Tips to Get Kids with ADHD to Read

How to Get ADHD Kids Reading

I didn’t know that Percy Jackson author, Rick Riordan, has a son who has ADHD and is dyslexic which is also true of Percy Jackson.  I love how Riordan made ADHD and dyslexia part of the storyline that shows the gifts that also come with ADHD and dyslexia — fast reflexes, ability to read Ancient Greek, etc. Read more…

chapter books, halloween

Halloween Picture Books and Chapter Books

Halloween Chapter Books for Kids

I’m not one to buy Halloween presents for my kids, but if I did, I’d buy each of them a book from this list. I would, however, pick a Halloween themed books for my children’s book clubs if I were hosting in October. The great thing is that kids, mine at least, like these books year around. Halloween is probably a kids’ favorite holiday! Read more…

Who Will Tell MyBrother?, Marlene Carvell, http://PragmaticMom.com, Pragmatic Mom, best native indian chapter books, Debbie Reese, best native american novels for children

Top 10: Best Native American Middle School Books

Best Native American Chapter Books for Middle School

This is part 2 of the 3 part series on Top 10:  Best Native American Children’s Books by Debbie Reese.  She is the authority on this topic.  This list has her top picks for middle school chapter books. For her Top 10 list of Picture Books, please click here.   Read more…

gaming to teach kids effective anath Pai PragmaticMom Pragmatic Mom best educational websites and games 3rd grade third grade

Learning Through Gaming from a 3rd Grade Teacher!

3rd Grade Learning Through Gaming Ideas

Ananth Pai is a third-grade über teacher at Parkview/Center Point Elementary school in Maplewood, Minnesota. He uses online games to teach and it’s a rousing success as measured by test results. Pai says that in a matter of four months, the class’s reading and math scores went from below average for third grade to mid-fourth-grade level. His site is here. Read more…

DIY Multiplication Math Game: Busted

Multiplication Math Game to Make Yourself

Here is a math game for multiplication you can make yourself!  It’s a nice riff on flash cards.  It’s from Get Schooled After School. Read more…

princess books for girls, strong role models for girls, best princess books

Top 10: Strong and Capable Princess Books for Girls (ages 2-16)

Best Non-Wimpy Princess Books for Girls

My two oldest children are girls and they went through that rite of passage:  Disney Princess.  We had Disney princess dress up clothes, Disney princess tea sets, Disney princess books — you name it, we had it.  My husband joked that the person at Disney who thought up combining the Princesses better be running the company by now (or at least, highly compensated) for the stroke of genius. Read more…

Scribble Kid iPad app drawing app for kids PragmaticMom pragmatic mom screen shot

Best Drawing Apps for Kids (ages 2-14)

Best Apps for Drawing That Kids Love

I didn’t have an iPad when my kids were in preschool so we completely missed this phase. My youngest had access to my iPhone and he played with the Grinch camera and made us and all his preschool friends into Grinch-like creatures after snapping their photo with my phone. Had I known that it was a precious moment in time, never to be duplicated, I would have saved those faces and emailed them to their moms if I were totally together. Read more…