Fun (Non-traditional) Ways for Kids to Learn Foreign Languages

Are your kids interested in learning a foreign language? There are lots of great apps and curricula, but there are also fantastic non-traditional ways for them to learn or supplement their learning. Here are some of our favorites that we’ve used over the years. Connect with local foreign exchange students When our oldest kids were […]

21 Games & Activities to Sneakily Improve Spelling

Looking for some fun ways to help improve your child’s spelling without boring curricula or spelling tests? There are so many fun ways to help improve spelling! Here are a few of our favorites. Make up fun, personalized word searches on sites like Puzzlemaker (it’s free). Add all kinds of words your child will appreciate […]

50+ Magical Ways to Learn Together This Week

Looking for some fun ways to learn with the kiddos? Here are oodles of ways to use fun and games to learn math, history, geography, reading, writing, science and more! Visit a museum in your area that you’ve never been to. Close your eyes, spin the globe, and put your finger down. Look to see […]

50+ Ways to Learn and Play With Social Studies

Looking for some hands-on ways for kids to work on history, geography, government and more? There are so many great ways to work on these skills with kids besides boring lesson plans and textbooks. Here are 50+ great ways for kids to learn social studies from fun, games and real life: Volunteer at a historic […]

50+ Real Life Ways to Learn Math

Looking for some hands-on ways for kids to work on multiplication, fractions, ratios, algebra and more? There are so many great ways to work on these skills with kids besides worksheets and textbooks. Here are 50+ great ways for kids to learn math from games and real life: (Note: This was supposed to be 50, […]

10 Fun Free Ways to Play with Geography

Looking for some fun ways to sneak in some geography this week? Here are all kinds of ways to help kids (and you!) learn about countries, maps and regions. Note: Affiliate links to Amazon are provided when helpful. Purchases from our links earn us a small commission to help keep the lights on here. I […]

Short Division Makes Math Easy

Note: This is an article that ran on my homeschooling column at Examiner around 2009 titled “Long Division Is So Last Century.” Last week a fellow homeschooling mother told me that her sons were struggling some days with long division.  I cringed and admitted we had not even started on the subject at our house.  […]

Five Lessons To Take From Waldorf In Your Homeschool

I talked recently about lessons you can take from Montessori to enrich your homeschool.  Waldorf schools are another great source of ideas.  Here are five Waldorf principles that appeal to many homeschoolers. 1.  Young children don’t need academics.  Waldorf schools don’t start any sort of formal teaching (including teaching reading) until age 7, much like […]

10 Sneaky Ways to Improve Your Child’s Math Skills

Math seems to trigger some ancient fight-or-flight mechanism in some otherwise brilliant children. This irrational fear of math can cause kids who don’t feel good at the subject to avoid doing it, leading to a snowball effect of more avoidance, falling farther behind and feeling more panic about not understanding it (and more avoidance). Luckily, […]

50 Fun Ways for Kids to Get Great at Spelling

All five of our homeschooled kids are now great spellers, but they weren’t always great. They learned in different ways that suited them, but in the end they all ended up becoming excellent spellers — without worksheets, drills or a curriculum. How? It was easier than I thought it would be, once they learned in […]

Learn French Free with The French Tutorial

Have you heard of The French Tutorial? It offers a full French course absolutely free online. The website, which has been around since 1999, says: The French Tutorial is a web-based step by step lesson covering basics, pronunciation, but also grammar, vocabulary and everyday French. It offers audio and video support for better oral comprehension, […]

Review: The Science Spell Book

We have a new favorite science experiment book in our homeschool! I was lucky to preview an advanced copy of The Science Spell Book: 30 Enchanting Experiments for Kids earlier this year and immediately fell in love with it. It’s is one of my favorite children’s science books that I’ve read, and I’ve read a […]

Five Great Nature Books for Kids

Most of us know how important nature is for kids and lately there have been a slew of fantastic books to help kids get out into nature and learn more about it. I am lucky enough to get advanced copies of many books in digital or print format from the publishers for the purpose of […]

Math Games Lab for Kids: a Great Book for Hands on Fun

Who needs to stick to a boring old math curriculum? There are some really great books for hands-on math fun. Math Games Lab for Kids: 24 Fun, Hands-On Activities for Learning with Shapes, Puzzles, and Games by Rebecca Rapoport is definitely a fun one to check out with your kiddos. I read an advanced reader […]

Fabulous Free American Sign Language Curriculum, Classes & More

Is your child interested in learning American Sign Language? There are some really wonderful free resources for kids of all ages to learn ASL. The American Sign Language University offers wonderful free online ASL classes.  They provide four levels of classes for free, with each course building on the last and comprising of 15 in-depth […]

Kids Can Learn Native Languages FREE with 7000 Languages

Here’s a wonderful free resource for adults or kids to learn indigenous languages. 7000 Languages is a nonprofit website and app that teaches native languages such as Dakota, Cree, Balinese and Ojibwe, absolutely free. 7000 Languages explains: We create free online language-learning courses in partnership with Indigenous, minority, and refugee communities so they can keep […]

Artsology Uses Games to Teach Kids About Famous Art

Have your kids played on Artsology yet? This free site uses a wide range of games and activities to teach kids about famous art and music, from Georgia O’Keefe flower puzzles to Salvado Dali hangman to virtual graffiti tagging and jazz musician name scrambles. This is a site we visited with our older kids years […]

Kids Can Win Scholarships Through the Science without Borders Annual Art Contest

Here’s a way for kids to be creative, spread awareness to protect our oceans and coral reefs, and possibly earn scholarship money through their art right now. The Khaled bin Sultan Living Oceans Foundation’s Science without Borders® Challenge is an annual art contest open to kids 11-19 years old, with scholarships of up to $500 […]

Absolutely Everything!: A History of Earth, Dinosaurs, Rulers, Robots and Other Things Too Numerous to Mention (Review)

A Favorite New Science and History Book

Our twelve year-old son, Alex, has been carrying around a huge science and history book for 3 days, devouring every page of it and talking to anybody who will listen about what he’s reading. The book is one that I reviewed recently for NetGalley, which I ordered after reading it because I thought it would […]

Review: Wild Life

Review: Wild Life tells of being homeschooled in the African wilderness and dealing with mean girls in American schools

The newly released Wild Life: Dispatches from a Childhood of Baboons and Button-Downs tells the fascinating story of Keena Roberts’ life growing up partly in her parents’ research station in the middle of an African reserve and then part time in an affluent American suburb. The publisher, Grand Central Publishing, describes the memoir: Keena Roberts […]

Fun hands on poetry exercises

Poetry Fun: 5 Creative Exercises to Get Kids Writing Poetry (and liking it)

Looking for a fun way to introduce poetry in your homeschool? Also want to sneak spelling, penmanship, vocabulary, antonyms and parts of speech into the play? Here are some creative poetry exercises that will fit the bill. Revised rhymes: Get out a book of nursery rhymes or short poems (try e.e. cummings or Emily Dickinson) […]

Fall Leaf ID inforgraphic

Fall Leaf ID Guide

Here’s a wonderful infographic to help you and your kiddos identify 60 different trees by their fall leaves! Infographic Developed by MJJSales.com The poster (courtesy of MJ Sales Umbrellas, which has a surprisingly helpful blog) helps kids learn about simple versus compound leaves, palmate versus pinnate leaves, and lobed versus not lobed leaves (see the […]

Review: Study with Me Gives Bullet Journaling Inspiration for Homeschoolers

A newly released #studygram inspired book offers great inspiration for students to use bullet journals for studying, and can also be used by homeschool parents for bujo ideas for kids. Study with Me: Effective Bullet Journaling Techniques, Habits, and Hacks To Be Successful, Productive, and Organized was released this month and I was lucky enough […]