by Lyn Lomasi, Staff Writer
Ready to send your tween off for another school year? Wait! Before you do that, make sure your tween has all the necessities. School supplies are far from the only thing your tween needs. There are some must-have items you may not think about. Even if you consider the item, you may not realize just how important certain aspects of it may be. As a veteran mom, here are some of the must-have accessories I recommend for tweens.
A backpack that fits right makes all the difference. You likely already know your tween needs a backpack. But did you know that fit is important? If your tween is walking around with a backpack that does not fit right or is too bulky, it can cause serious strain on the back. The straps should not be too loose and your tween should not have the backpack hanging too low. Straps should be snug, but not too tight. Did you know that backpacks are actually sized for certain age and weight ranges? Be sure you are choosing the correct one. While the latest character backpack may be appealing, if it isn't the right fit, you are not doing your child a favor by purchasing it.
Journaling helps your tween remember assignments and get down feelings. A journal can be a great way for your tween to write down thoughts during break times. This can help relieve any stress or get out any other emotions so they don't build up during school. It can also double as a way to keep track of certain assignments. Doubling it as a place to hold assignments helps prevent others from trying to read your tween's other thoughts. Decorative notebooks are great for this purpose, as you don't want the look to be obviously diary-like.
Every tween needs a cell phone. I realize that some parents will cringe at me saying this. However, the world is much different than it was when we were kids. Having a cell phone helps keep your tween safe. Be sure that rules are set to only use it during certain times and to keep it put away safely at other times. If your tween rides or walks home from school with someone other than you, a cell-phone can literally be a life-saver. While it may sound like giving in to a trend, the reasons a tween should own a cell phone are much more important than that. There are low-cost, pay-as-you-go plans, as well as unlimited plans to help avoid your tween from racking up unnecessary costs.
A safety ID helps protect your tween. All kids, especially tweens and teens, should have a safety ID. This is an ID card that features a current photo, fingerprints, and vital information about your tween. Many hospitals and other safety-geared organizations hold events where these can be obtained. If you cannot find one, check with your child's doctor to see if they know where to get one in your area. Generally, there will be a copy for the child, as well as a copy for the parent. This ID will be used to help find and identify your tween in the case of an emergency.
A small file folder helps keep things organized. Tired of trying to figure out whether your tween has any papers you need to sign or not? Is there homework? A special event coming up? Is your tween constantly losing assignments or not keeping them sorted by class? A small file folder can help keep up with all of this at once. Designate a section for each subject, as well as for parent papers. That way, your tween can stick each paper in the correct slot before bringing it home.
Back to School: Must-Have Accessories for Teens
Back to Homeschool: Must-Have Accessories for Homeschoolers On-the-Go
Back to School: Laying Ground Behavioral Rules
*I originally published this via Yahoo Contributor Network:
by Lyn Lomasi, Staff Writer
Gym is a subject many people struggle with during homeschooling. It is often assumed that gym cannot be done without having many students, so some people choose to just let their children play outside for gym. Playing outside is great exercise, but children should learn other active movements as well. Here is a list of good physical activities for homeschool. Families who are homeschooling will benefit from these, but they are also great ideas for playing outside with the kids in general, especially on the weekends.
Hold a neighborhood sports day
Pick a flexible day of the week where people in the neighborhood can get together all the time and play the sport of the month together. Find a large park in your area to do this. Hand out and post fliers at local schools, churches, and libraries (wherever permitted). Start going to the location at that time every week. Keep handing out the fliers if not too many people show up the first week. Before you know it, there will be a large amount of kids participating. The people in this group will also become friends, so you have just found a group of people you can organize other fun events with for social activities.
Make Your Own Tetherball
Do you have a pole in your backyard that was originally used for something else? If it's wooden, stick a strong hook in it, attach a chain to the hook, then attach a tetherball (check sports stores or chain discount retailers). If you can't find a tetherball, volleyballs also work great for it. Just make sure you are able to attach a hook to whatever ball you use without deflating it. If your pole is metal and does not have a hook at the top, you will either have to drill a hole for a hook or weld a hook onto it. To make the game from scratch, just insert your own pole into the ground and then follow the same instructions.
Simple activities can be rotated often for variety
Bike riding - Find a bike trail or large park in your area where everyone in the family can participate. Look for anything with paths that kids can ride on easily. Paved paths are easiest, but not necessary.
Sporting practice - Practicing the rules and techniques of sports can be done without a large group of people. Most sports games can also be changed a bit, in order to play with only a small amount of people. For instance, with basketball, you can simply shoot hoops.
Homeschool group activities - Join a homeschool group and participate in the active get-togethers. This could range from playing at the park, to organized competitive sports, co-op physical ed classes, and more.
Sports Leagues - Put your kids on a sports league or team of their choice. This could include soccer, football, softball, dance, gymnastics, basketball, and more.
Join a kid-friendly gym - Sign your kids up for classes like kids yoga, swimming, or kids kickboxing. Research the gyms in your area for specific types of classes that your kids will enjoy.
Swim for fun - If you have access to a pool, take the kids swimming every other day. This could be an indoor or outdoor pool. For outdoor pools, make sure the weather is appropriate and everyone wears sunscreen and protective clothing.
Good old-fashioned games - Red Rover, Tag, Simon Says, Mother May I, and other such games can be fun and physically challenging. The kids may not even realize they are getting a workout.
Four-Square - All you need for this is a piece of chalk, rules for playing four-square, and a rubber ball. Draw a square with a plus sign in the middle to split it into four squares. Unused driveways or garages are good for this. If you have neither, but have a yard, cement a section off for this. The cemented section can also be used for basketball and tetherball.
Exercise DVDs - Have a daily workout session via your home DVD player.
Weekly field day events - Invite all the neighborhood kids and do the same thing as the neighborhood sports day, but instead, do field day. You can choose one or both.
Simply stay active
The actual activity is less important than the fact that you are doing something active as a family every single day. Make sure that whatever you choose, your children are active every day, based on the doctor's orders. Also, don't forget the health & nutrition part of physical education. Always check with your child's pediatrician before stopping or starting any physical regimen.
This content was originally published on Yahoo! Contributor Network by Lyn Lomasi.
_by Lyn Lomasi, Staff Writer
Are you looking for a simpler and faster way to teach your kids their sight words or spelling words? Kids can get discouraged easily when progress isn't made quickly.
As a former homeschool mom who still plays an active role in teaching the kids, I've developed many learning methods and lesson plans.
When it comes to fully grasping new words, kids need to make the connection in several ways. If they only make the connection to the word in one or two ways, it will be harder for them to learn current and future words. My method for teaching kids spelling and sight words fast comes in several steps.
Step One: Make flashcards of all the words together. Write each word on its own index card in dark lettering. The child can help with this by looking at the words and copying what they see onto the index cards. This helps practice the visual connection, as well as the writing connection.
Step Two: Show one flashcard to the child, clearly pronouncing the word.This triggers an audio-visual connection to the word. Be sure the child is looking at the word as well as listening.
Step Three: Have the child repeat back that same word. This will tell you if the child is listening to you. It also helps with the speech connection. A child needs to be able to say a word properly before truly understanding the way the word should be formed.
Step Four: Have the child write the word. Just seeing, hearing, and saying the word is not enough. A child also needs to know how to write it. This will help with spelling tests and reading & writing in general.
Step Five: Have the child read the word back to you, sounding it out. If the child is reading it back without sounding out the word, it may just be that they are saying it because you just said the word. Take the time to have the child say each sound in the word so that they know how the word is formed.
Step Six: Repeat steps two - five with each word. This same process should be followed with each word, including the easier words. Going through this process helps to give the child a good understanding of how words work, which will help with reading and writing current and future spelling and sight words.
Practice these steps until the child can read and write each word quickly.
I've successfully used this method with more than one child. Let us know in the comments how it worked for you and any tips you may have as well.
In the early days of schooling, children would often pile into a one-room school house. These kids were not sorted into different classrooms based on age or grade level. Everyone learned together and kids excelled based on their individual abilities. But then, things changed for many schools and the most common model involved sorting classrooms into grade levels. Should all schools go back to mixing age groups?
What is mixed age grouping?
Mixed-age grouping (also called multi-age learning) is the act of placing children at different age and grade levels in the same classroom together. Think back to the days of the one-room schoolhouse. While kids were in various grade levels, they all were in the classroom with the same teacher or set of teachers. Anytime children of multiple skill levels are in the classroom together, it is referred to as mixed-age grouping.
Benefits to mixing age groups in school
Studies have shown that mixed-age grouping teaches kids independence as well as teamwork. When kids of varying levels are placed in the same space, many will naturally work harder to achieve the next level. They also learn to work together with all people, not just their peers. In our homeschool, the kids all learn together, even though each of them is at a different level. That experience combines with research has convinced me that all schools should go back to mixed-age grouping.
Who uses mixed-age methods?
Most schools use it on a smaller scale. But Montessori schools, open schools, private schools, homeschoolers, and many others implement multi-aged learning for the full school day. Some schools have older students read to younger students during a small portion of the day.
Other schools may have the children work together all day long, regardless of the difference in skill levels. In a homeschool, if there is more than one child, mixed-age grouping often comes naturally. Some homeschoolers teach the kids as a group, while others separate the learning.
Should all schools go back to multi-age learning?
Based on my family's experience, as well as extensive research I've done over the years, I would fully support implementation of multi-age learning in all schools. In my experience, there really haven't been disadvantages where the kids are concerned. It can sometimes be more challenging for the educator to teach kids of various levels.
But with practice and the correct planning, for me it eventually evened out with teaching kids who were on the same level. The main issue that would come with converting all schools to this method is the change in the way the curriculum is handled. That in itself may be a hurdle for some schools. But in my opinion, it would be well worth the change.
What do you think? Should all schools go back to mixed-age grouping?
As parents, students, and teachers research education from many angles, home school is becoming a more popular option. With that growing popularity comes many questions and concerns. Also, a study has been released that shows students in homeschool again scoring much higher than public school students. Here is a collection of resources on some common myths and questions associated with homeschool.
Why Don't Home School Parents Teach in a School Building?
With more people homeschooling, some people may wonder if homeschoolers should buy big buildings together. So, why don't homeschool parents form a school?
Can Someone Other Than a Parent Legally Homeschool a Child?
When making the decisions involved in the homeschool choice, some will wonder what teaching options are available. One possible question is whether another adult, besides the parents, can legally homeschool a child.
Home School Myth: Homeschooled Students are Unprepared for College
A common homeschool myth is the one that assumes children who are educated outside of a traditional school setting will be unprepared for the academic challenges of a college. Here we will explore that myth.
Home School Help: Dealing With Negative Reactions to Your Choice
When a parent chooses to home school, that decision is generally one of great importance to them. Unfortunately, not everyone will always agree on this issue, leaving most parents who homeschool vulnerable to questions, as well as disapproval by some.
Can a Parent be a Homeschool Teacher Without a Degree?
Schooling children at home is becoming more and more prevalent as parents look at a variety of schooling options for the children. A question that comes up often when choosing to homeschool is the question of whether a parent can really become a child's teacher.
Home School Myth: Homeschooled Teens Can't Get a High School Diploma
As the concept of homeschooling continues to ease back into the mainstream, where it began, more and more questions and myths seem to follow. It is often assumed that homeschoolers won't be able to receive a high school diploma.
Home School Myth: Kids Who Homeschool Have Poor Social Skills
As the concept of homeschooling continues to ease back into the mainstream, where it began, more and more questions and myths seem to follow. One myth that is very often assumed of home schooled kids is that they do not have proper social skills.
Child Struggling in School? Why You Should Try Homeschool
Do you have a child struggling or failing in school? Have you tried the options available (extra help at school, tutors, etc) with little to no success? Many parents and children struggle with this issue daily. Could homeschooling be the answer for your family's situation?
Homeschool Myths: Parents Who Homeschool are Rich
As the concept of homeschooling continues to ease back into the mainstream, where it began, more and more questions and myths seem to follow. One homeschool myth is the concept that families who choose to school at home are rich.
Homeschool Myths: Home School Parents Think They Know Everything
As the concept of homeschooling continues to ease back into the mainstream, where it began, more and more questions and myths seem to follow. One myth that is often brought up to homeschoolers is the "know-it-all" myth.
Homeschool: Custom VS Pre-Packaged Curriculum
Deciding whether you'll go with a customized curriculum or a pre-packaged one for homeschooling your child can be a daunting task. Here are some things to consider to help make that choice easier.
Homeschool Myths: Home School Kids are Too Lazy for Real School
There are many myths surrounding homeschool. One of those myths is that of laziness on the child's part. Some feel that a child who home schools is too lazy to complete real schoolwork. Is this really true?
Homeschool Myths: Home School Parents are Just Lazy
As the concept of homeschooling continues to ease back into the mainstream, where it began, more and more questions and myths seem to follow. A common myth that seems to follow many parents who decide to homeschool their kids is the concept of laziness.
Homeschool Myths: Homeschooled Kids are Truant
Many questions and myths seem to follow the topic of homeschool. One topic that frequently comes up during conversations about home school is the one of truancy. It is often perceived that a child who is homeschooled is (or should be) counted as truant.
Homeschooling to Get Positive Social Interaction?
For so many years, choosing to educate children from home was looked at as stripping away their social interaction. However, many homeschooling families will argue with that fact, and for good reason. Here is a newer, more positive look at socialization and homeschool.
Preparing For Homeschool: Frequently Asked Questions
When you make the choice to homeschool your children, there are many questions that will be in your mind. As a mom who has homeschooled, I now know the possible answers to many of the questions you may have on your mind.
Is Homeschool the Best Title for the Education Method?
Homeschooling is many things. But, does it have the correct title? This title implies that schooling is done completely at home, which is very far from the average "homeschool".
Public School, Private School, Homeschool, or...
Choosing the right type of school for our children is a very difficult decision. This decision will ultimately determine your child's success in the future...First, we must remember that each family and child is unique and has differences that play a role in this decision.
Gym Class Ideas for Homeschooling Families
Families who are homeschooling will benefit from these, but they are also great ideas for playing outside with the kids in general, especially on the weekends.
Homeschooling: Enhancing Social Skills
Homeschooled kids have a variety of options for enhancing social skills. Many of the parents that only homeschool inside simply don't know how else to do it. Now, if you are one of the parents that has no clue or just want to learn more, read on.
Why Does Anyone Homeschool Anyway?
Well, I can't tell you why everyone else homeschools, but I can tell you about our decision to homeschool and why we thought it was the best choice for our family.
~ The author is always open to questions and discussion. Please feel free to express your thoughts and concerns.
*This is not a complete guide on homeschooling, nor is it meant as legal advice. Always check with your state's education agency for up to date laws and do the proper research for questions and concerns.
**I originally published a version of this via Yahoo Contributor Network
Whether your child is homeschooling or in traditional school, there comes a point when he or she needs to learn about the isosceles triangle. The isosceles triangle often is confusing. Students sometimes mix it up with other types of triangles, such as the scalene triangle. No matter if you are searching for free homeschool lessons to teach about the isosceles triangle, resources and games to re-enforce lessons, printable worksheets, or free homework help, the collection of links below should have what you need.
Free Homeschool Lesson Plans: Isosceles Triangle
Equilateral and Isoseles Triangles
Free Printable Worksheets: Isosceles Triangle
Types of Triangle
Enchanted Learning: Triangles
Free Homework Help: Isosceles Triangle
Free Math Help: Isosceles Triangle
Area of an Isosceles Triangle
Free Educational Games: Isosceles Triangle
Interactive Lesson Involving an Isosceles Triangle
Interactive Lesson: Isosceles triangle Investigation
Enjoy the following free printable comprehension practice worksheet (Grades K-5). To print, highlight the area to be printed, right click, choose print, and then choose to print the selection, rather than the page.
After completing these sheets 3 times per week for the entirety of the school year (along with other appropriate comprehension lessons), students should master the required comprehension skills for the appropriate grade level. Also, by practicing comprehension with this type of activity, this will give the children important additional writing and reading practice. To increase effectiveness, other comprehension assignments should be given as well. Students will need a variety of appropriate lessons.
Students are to complete this packet at least 3 times per week after reading a book. Details in answers should be graded according to age and grade level.
Kindergarteners should answer with at least one complete sentence per answer. First graders should answer with at least 2 complete sentences per answer. Second graders should answer with 2 complete sentences as well, but should have more descriptive details.
3rd graders should have descriptive details as well as 3-4 complete sentences per answer. 4th graders should have 4 to 5 complete sentences per answer and each sentence must be fully detailed. 5th graders should do the same as 4th graders, but their wording and descriptions should be more elaborate.
Beyond 5th grade, you will need something more advanced. For the discussion section, it is important to be sure that students are recognizing and using examples from the story and recognizing similarities as well as differences between the story and real life.
Note: Your students may need a separate piece of lined paper for answering the questions.
1.What is the title of the book you read?
2.What are the names of the characters?
3.What do the main characters look like? (remember details)
4.What happens in the beginning of the story? (remember details)
5.What happens in the middle of the story? (remember details)
6.What happens in the end of the story?
7.What is the main idea of the story?
8.What lesson did you learn from this story?
9.Are there any parts of the story you did not understand?
If so, write the word/s and/or sentence/s you did not understand and explain how you figured out the meaning. If there are any words, see question # 11 as well.
10.Discuss the story with a friend or family member.
Ideas for discussion:
a.What event/s that happened in real life remind you of this story?
b.What did you like about this story?
c.What did you dislike about this story?
d.What's another good way this story could have ended?
e.What's a sad way the story could have ended?
f.How did the story make you feel? (sad, happy, excited, angry, relieved...)
g.Did the author make you want to keep reading the book until it was finished?
h.Describe your favorite scene in the story and explain why it's your favorite.
11. List any words you need to look up in the thesaurus and dictionary. (Words you didn't understand.)
If you're thinking about or have decided to homeschool, you likely are wondering about homeschool laws. What are the legalities and where can information be found? Each state in the US has a different set of rules. The following information should help guide you toward the most current information.
One place to learn about homeschool laws is through your state's education department. When people think of the Department of Education, they may not necessarily be thinking about homeschool. But this agency should have access to the most current information regarding homeschool.
The Homeschool Legal Defense Association (HSLDA) also can be extremely helpful when it comes to learning about homeschool laws. They even have a state by state breakdown of the legal options. In addition, they also can be very supportive to homeschool families who have been legally wronged.
Can a Parent Be a Homeschool Teacher Without a Degree?
Schooling children at home is becoming more and more prevalent as parents look at a variety of schooling options for the children. A question that comes up often when choosing to homeschool is the question of whether a parent can really become a child's teacher...
Can Someone Other Than a Parent Legally Homeschool a Child?
When making the decisions involved in the homeschool choice, some will wonder what teaching options are available. One possible question is whether another adult, besides the parents, can legally homeschool a child...
Homeschool FAQ: Common Myths and Questions
With growing popularity comes questions and concern. A new study has been released that shows homeschool students again scoring much higher than public school students. Here is a collection of some common myths and questions associated with homeschool...
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