As a home-schooling parent, it's easy to become discouraged and overwhelmed.. to doubt that you can handle all the learning experiences with your kids and perhaps, even doubt that you really are making a difference. Take a look at the following infographic for some inspiration.
ReadWriteThink is an online resource for classroom teaching, professional development and parent and after-school educational resources.
You'll find lesson plans, teaching resources and great ideas across all subject areas. But, I really like their student interactives.
You'll find online tools to help students organise and summarize facts and ideas, learn and write acrostic poems, design and illustrate book covers, use a comic creator to produce their own comic strip for a variety of contexts and so much more.
There are essay map creators, drama maps to investigate character, setting, conflict and resolution. There is a K-W-L creator.This tool allows students to create an online K-W-L chart. There is a letter generator and a picture match.
Take a few moments to search the list of resources.. here.
And.. work completed on student interactives can be emailed and saved.
The 2013 Educational Calendar from TeacherVision is now available online, as a widget for your site or blog, as RSS feed, or in a downloadable print version. See here..
This calendar lists important historical dates with accompanying activities or highlights something of interest or importance for your kids. It's a great way to learn about history or as a starting point for further study.
For example, January 11 lists The First Diabetic Patient treated with Insulin (1922) and Amelia Earhart flew solo across the Pacific (1935). An online link takes you to a related printable about these historic events and other activities to complete.
Kids really relate to events that have some personal link, especially if they are learning about historical events that occurred on their birthday.
'Reading to your children may be the single, most powerful contribution that you, as a parent, can make toward their success in school. Reading to your children is the is absolutely the best way to develop their ability to read for themselves and by themselves. Studies have shown that the one common factor found in all children who learned to read without being formally taught how was not high IQ, not high family income, not parents who had college degrees; rather, the one factor was that all these children were read to by their parents regularly, frequently, and from whatever materials happened to be at hand- newspapers, road signs, even packing labels.' (William Russell)
Some parents read to their children when they are young but cease once the children have learned to read by themselves. Research shows that children of all ages continue to benefit from being read great books by their parents or carers.
So... what should you choose? There are a number of books by William Russell that can assist you here. 'Classics to Read Aloud to Your Children' and 'More Classics to Read Aloud to Your Children' provide selections of stories and poems for every listening age with some introductory information about the characteristics of the listener and the stories included. For example, Listening Level II is introduced in this fashion: 'The tales in this section are full of adventure, and so are the listeners for whom they are intended. There is broad humour here, too.'
For other ideas about choosing books to read aloud to your children, check out these age-appropriate lists HERE and from TeacherFirst HERE. You will find that reading aloud to your children will become even more enjoyable and engrossing as they grow older.
The programs available from Learning A-Z are great; high-quality, easy to access, levele materials that are downloadable and printable. On purchase of a subscription, you have access to all learning levels which makes it very cost-effective, especially if you are home-schooling or tutoring your kids.
Learning A-Z has a Reading Program, Vocabulary, Writing Program, Reading Tutors, and Science
and yes, will correlate with Australian (US & Canada) standards. See here..
There is another related program available, an online resource: Raz-Kids. Subscription to this program enables children to read along with leveled reading material, record themselves reading, build fluency and answer the interactive comprehension questions.
The Science program also includes Science in the News units- relevant content written at three reading levels and providing
opportunities to develop critical thinking, inquiry, and literacy skills.
The video introduction to Reading A-Z below presents a good overview of all aspects of this great program. Check it out below. Samples from each of Learning A-Z's award-winning programs are available from the site before you decide whether the material will be helpful for your needs, so take some time to check it out.
Reading Eggspress; where reading is just part of the adventure!
ABCs Reading Eggs takes their award-winning program a step further to a new adventure, a new world, for 7-13 year olds.
This new reading environment includes a library with more than 600 fiction and non-fiction e-books with quizzes; a comprehension gym including 200 lessons to give your comprehension skills a real work-out; apartment and mall filled with awards, cards and other trophies to collect and trade; stadium where you can race against other students from across the globe.
'Hours and hours of motivating educational content to eggsplore!'
And.. if want to just try it out, you can take advantage of the free trial offer. See here..
An overview of the younger version of Reading Eggs for those just starting out on their reading adventures can be viewed below and, there are a few learning apps from Reading Eggs available. The first one, Eggy 100, is a free app teaching 100 of the first reading sight words. Try it out!
Literacy Planet (previously titled Intrepica) seeks to create a
motivating online resource for primary students to develop great literacy
skills. Students log in and customise their own avatar. As they participate in
literacy games and activities (phonics, spelling word searches, comprehension
activities and more), they earn credits to purchase new outfits and accessories
for their avatar.
Pre-reading, phonics, spelling, vocabulary, reading fluency, grammar and comprehension skills are all covered in this online resource. The learning exercises have been designed by some of Australia’s most respected educators.
Inside the program, you’ll find the Academy, where self-paced learning occurs; the Arena, where students compete against each other in literacy challenges; Home, where they customise their avatar and view their awards; Shop, where they spend their virtual credit and the Arcade, filled with games as a reward and incentive.
Literacy Planet caters for all students and enhances classroom learning. It has been found to be helpful for students with learning difficulties: ADD, ADHD, dyslexia or short-term memory problems.
Literact Planet also has an app which is free to download but requires an online account to be able to access the games and activities. Check out the pricing for parents, schools or tutors.
A great teacher never strives to explain his vision- he simply invites you to stand him. (Rev R. Inman)