Thursday, February 15, 2018

Concepts Of Print. ..

I get many questions every year from families about reading.  How to know if their child is ready to read, how to help their child read, and tips for struggling readers.  My Masters is in Reading, and I am currently taking a reading class to keep my teaching certificate current.  I am hoping these posts will be helpful for families.   If you have a question you would like answered in a post please write it in the comments.    


Concepts Of Print (COP) or Concepts About Print (CAP) can be defined is a set of understandings about how print works.  A child acquires CAP before they are able to read.  Children who have CAP know which way to hold a book, know text has meaning, know words are made of letters, that text is read from left to right, and that there is punctuation at the end of sentences.

Students who grow up in print rich environments and are read-aloud to will usually pick these skills up naturally.  Below is a short video that is directed to parents explaining CAP.




This video is done by a teacher assessing if a child has CAP. You can teach these to your child each time you read a book to them.  Ask them different questions each time.  "Where is the title?  Where is the first page? Where do you start?"  The video will show you more.





If you want to check if your younger student has CAP here is a checklist assessment that will help you determine that.  You ask your student some basic questions and check them off on your paper.

Here are some apps that are helpful for building CAP.

The following are based on the Bob Books.  Bob Books Reading Magic Lite which is free at GoogleAmazon, and iTunes.  Bob Books Reading Magic #1 Reading Magic is 2.99 to 3.99 at GoogleAmazon, and iTunes.

Disney Story-time at iTunes.

The popular online program Starfall has a free app at GoogleAmazon, and iTunes.

 Let me know what you think, and any reading questions that you have!
~Becky

Friday, February 09, 2018

Repost: Erzra Jack Keats books

I have fond memories of reading Ezra Jack Keats books as a child.  I still remember seeing the short film for The Snowy Day.

Keat was a fascinating man.  The Ezra Jack Keats foundation is  set up to use the royalties from Keat's books to make the world a better place for children.
Keats has written many books.   There are several wonderful activities on Pinterest using his books.



Happy Reading!
~Becky

Friday, February 02, 2018

Go Figure. .. math web site.

  I was thrilled to learn about a wonderful new math web site by Kimberly, a homeschool student.  Go Figure is a project she has been working on. It is an wonderful site filled with the "elegant side" of mathematics.   Read below to learn more!  I love seeing what our fellow homeschoolers are doing. 



First Stop

Welcome to Go Figure! This is a website dedicated to showing the elegant side of math, the kind that gets less attention than it deserves. Math is not just about rote calculations: it’s about analytical thinking and creative problem-solving, and that’s what makes it so fun! This website is still growing, so there’s more to come. To subscribe to our email list and hear when new content is posted, click here.

More Information:  

Go Figure is a project designed to boost mathematical interest in middle school and junior high school students. Not only is math becoming increasingly important in an ever more technological world, but it also has a playful and elegant side that is too often overlooked. A lot of students see math as dull and difficult, and this mindset can artificially sway students who are on the fence about math. My goal is to promote an alternative approach: one that celebrates the beautiful side of mathematics and provides a path to learning the invaluable lessons – such as analytical thinking and creative problem solving – that it teaches.




I really only started seeing the beautiful side of math in middle school, when I started participating in math competitions. In my contest preparation, I ran into elegant math concepts I hadn’t encountered before, and I really enjoyed exploring them. Around the same time, I saw my friends starting to like math less and less, and I thought it was sad that they were turning away from it just as things were getting interesting. Over time I read more about the non-math culture in the United States and the way most students see math, and I wanted to do something to change this mindset. When I attended a Julia Robinson Math Festival in my area and saw volunteers helping students explore beautiful math problems, the atmosphere galvanized me to get involved in showing students that there’s a lot to like about math.
Quoted From The Davidson Website.

Saturday, January 27, 2018

Winter Activities. . By Lisa McAfee

My friend Lisa McAfee.  

Wow! winter has been putting on a little show here in SW Ohio the past few weeks. It was so cold here for a period of time that the Ohio River had big sheets of ice on it! So, when inclement weather has you housebound with your youngsters, how do you keep them happy and still focusing on school? How about some winter-inspired activities?
·         Make paper snowflakes. You can back your creations with tissue paper either white or colored for some pizazz and hang them from the ceiling and close to a light source so you can see through the tissue. (art)
·         Play a Scavenger Hunt- Instead of just hauling the books out from their usual location, why not create a scavenger hunt to start out the day? Not only have the schoolbooks hidden, but add a treat for a special surprise. Clues could be:  Clue #1 Go to the room where you brush your teeth. (Hide the clue somewhere in the bathroom such as under the wastepaper basket or inside the vanity. Clue #2 Go to the place where we eat our meals. (Hide the clue under the tablecloth or a placemat or salt and pepper shakers, etc.) Clue #3 Look in the place where pots and pans are kept.  Clue #4 Find the place where you rest at night. Here you can have the books hidden under the bed. Clue #5 Bring all of your books to the schoolroom and there you will find the treasure to begin our school day. Your treat can be a piece of fruit, a cup of hot chocolate, a new Read-Aloud book, or whatever you think would be a fun idea to have as a reward. (reading, physical education)
·         Create Word Poetry- Do you have old grocery fliers or magazines that you can cut up for this activity? You can create a simple poem that has two lines that rhyme or you can create a free verse poem. You can make the poem's theme as simple as food if all you have is grocery fliers or as elaborate as you like. Since we are in the middle of winter, what about that being the theme? (language arts)
·         DIY Window Clings- with a little bit of glue and some paint your son will have lots of fun making these. I bet you would enjoy making a few too! (art)
·         Window Clings
You will need for each color:
2 tablespoons White craft glue (like Elmer’s)
2 -3 drops Liquid food coloring
2 drops Liquid dish detergent
1 small paintbrush
Combine 2 tablespoons of glue with 2 drops of dish detergent. Add a few drops of food coloring and you are ready to make your design! Lay a page protector down so that you can paint your design (using your paintbrush) directly on it so it will be easy to pull off when it is dried. You can create your own designs or use cookie cutters and paint inside of them.  Make your design about 1/4 inch thick. If you make it too thick it will take a long time to dry. If you are using a cookie cutter, let the glue set for a few minutes before removing it. Let designs dry overnight, poke with your finger to see if they have set well enough to remove from the page protector without tearing.  Carefully peel off of the page protector and place on your windows.

Make popcorn and cups of tea or hot chocolate and snuggle up with a great Read-Aloud book. I just finished the 1957 Newberry Medal, Miracles on Maple Hill, by Virginia Sorensen. This is a delightful book about a family who is in need of a miracle for their father who has come home from the war and how an old homestead restores him and his family.  (language arts)

Lisa McAfee bio:
I am an alumni home educator of two sons and Ohio licensed teacher with over 30 years of teaching experience in a variety of settings. I have been assessing homeschool students’ work for the past 17 years and enjoy helping empower and encourage homeschool moms with their homeschooling.  www.schoolmarmohio.com