Life at Warp Speed

life, faith, food, parenting, homeschooling and just about anything else that is on my mind

Stella and Sam Story Pack Bundle – Free right now. June 29, 2013

Filed under: Book Apps,Kids — lifeatwarpspeed @ 12:07 pm
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Stella and Sam Story Pack for iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad on the iTunes App Store.

Stella and Sam rank among my most favorite storybook apps. This whole pack of e-books (normally $6.99) is free right now. I have written a lot about Stella and Sam:

Highly recommended for ages 2 to 5.



The Legend of Momotaro for iPad on the iTunes App Store June 26, 2013

Filed under: Book Apps,Kids — lifeatwarpspeed @ 11:11 pm
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The Legend of Momotaro for iPad on the iTunes App Store.

No time today for a detailed review. I noticed this e-book app (normally $2.99) go free today. The Legend of Momotaro is a famous Japanese legend. It is rather hard to find good e-books that speak to Asian Americans and celebrate our cultural heritage. This is one I would suggest you add to your e-library.

Recommended for ages 4 to 8.



Free Stanford online class to help parents with their kids’ math! June 21, 2013

Filed under: Education,Homeschooling — lifeatwarpspeed @ 6:16 pm
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Stanford Online. (scroll down to How to Learn Math)

Obviously, I am all about the free on this blog, and this is the age of free online education. There is a vast array of free on-line classes for just about anything you can think of and from premier universities in our country.

If you are parent that works or one that homeschools, I frequently hear a lot about struggling with mathematics. Even though our household is a “math-y” family, I am signed up right away for this free on-line offering from Dr. Jo Boaler. This course aims to help any one working with a student in math rethink your approach and how to effectively help your child.

Given the dismal state of math education in the US, all parents are right to be concerned about how they can help their students be successful in their studies. I totally get that the majority of parents (unless they have STEM backgrounds) may feel uncomfortable and uncertain once their child starts to get to middle school and higher math.

(excerpt from the course description)

Dr Jo Boaler is Professor of Mathematics Education at Stanford University, editor of the research commentary section of JRME, and author of seven books, including “What’s Math Got To Do With It” (US) / “The Elephant in the Classroom” (UK). Former roles have included being the Marie Curie Professor of Mathematics Education in England and a mathematics teacher in London comprehensive schools.Who is this course for?
This course is for teachers of math (K-12) or for other helpers of students, such as parents. After the summer I will release a student version of this course. This course provides an opportunity for teachers and parents to preview the ideas for students and think about how they may be useful, as well as learn from new research ideas and share ideas with other teachers and parents who enroll in the course.

What is the pace of the course?

The course will launch on July 15th, a good pace may be to take 2 sessions per week, but you can choose your own pace. The course will close on September 27th, 2013.

Recommended for parents and teachers of any child studying mathematics. Dr. Boaler is planning to release a student version of the course after this summer.



Apple Movie Camp – free!

Filed under: Things to Do with Kids — lifeatwarpspeed @ 4:39 pm
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Registration is now open!

Life at Warp Speed

Apple Retail Store – Camp.

Do you have an aspiring filmmaker at home? Or looking for an interesting creative FREE summer camp for your kids? Apple is sponsoring a free 3 day workshop for kids 8 to 12 this summer in their retail stores. Your kids will get a chance to learn to shoot their own movie, how to use GarageBand on the iPad and learn to edit and produce a movie using iMovie on the Mac. Click through on the link above to learn more and to register for notification when sign-ups open. Space is limited.


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Oxford Owl – hundreds of free e-books! (no iPad needed) June 17, 2013

Free children’s ebooks for ages 3-11 | Oxford Owl.

Help your child’s maths | Oxford Owl.

I don’t want non-iPad owners out there to feel a bit left out. Even though you can snag all these cool deals with your iTunes account, it would be nice to have something that you could access right now. So, here is a great pair of websites from our friends from across the pond.

The reading website has over 250 FREE e-books, tons of activities and games, and resources to help you with your child’s reading skills. Everything is separated by age range/reading ability which makes it very easy to find what you are looking for. The books range from age 3 up to 11. The math(s) website is geared towards ages 3 to 5 and 5 to 7 with activities and resources to help you develop your child’s math skills. This site is not nearly as robust as the reading website.

Keep in mind, these are British websites, so the pronunciation, phonetic rules, and spelling adhere to Queen’s English.

Recommended for children in pre-K to 5th grade for reading and pre-K to 2nd for math.



Lucky Word Search App – free for a limited time! June 16, 2013

Lucky Word Search Educators Edition – A Kindergarten, First, Second, Third, Fourth, Fifth and Sixth Grade Spelling Game for iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, iPhone 5, iPod touch (3rd generation), iPod touch (4th generation), iPod touch (5th generation) and iPad on the iTunes App Store.

This is a great deal for a normally $10 app! It is absolutely free right now. This app covers spelling words (yes, sight words included!) from K to 6 grade in a fun word search game. This is a nice way to get in extra spelling practice in a painless fashion. M just loves doing word searches.

Recommended for K to 6. 4th through 6th graders might not like the cutesy interface. Great for accelerated learners with higher lexile reading levels.)



DoodleMath App – Just $0.99. Grab now, it is about to end!

Filed under: Gifted,Homeschooling,Kids,Upper Elementary — lifeatwarpspeed @ 8:52 pm
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DoodleMath (Elementary Math) for iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, iPhone 5, iPod touch (3rd generation), iPod touch (4th generation), iPod touch (5th generation) and iPad on the iTunes App Store.

I have been playing around with DoodleMath today which is an adaptive learning math app designed by a group of teachers in the UK. This is a REAL bargain at just $0.99 (Normally, $8.99). The download is a free trial version. THEN, you must make sure to grab the in-app purchase. This is well worth the sale price.This deal is set to expire shortly, so hurry!

I really like the way this app is designed to help work on math skills. This is meant as a supplement to existing math programs. You must NOT help your student with the math problems since the app assessing your child’s weaknesses and will adapt towards focusing on those skills. Students using this app have seen significant improvement in their mastery of various skills. There are over 6,000 questions that are in this app. It covers the equivalent of topics covered in upper elementary math (grades 2 to 5).

Highly recommended for grades 2 to 5. Excellent for remedial work or for skill refreshment over the summer. User friendly and easy to use for accelerated learners.



Massive List of Free Reading Programs for the Summer! (updated 6/16)

Filed under: Children's Books,Deals — lifeatwarpspeed @ 12:52 am
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Book Adventure | Free Reading Program.

Sylvan’s Learning Centers. Book Adventure is a fun, free way to motivate your child to read! Kids in grades K-8 can search for books, read them offline, come back to quiz on what they have read, and earn prizes for their reading success. Program is on-going.

Summer Reading – Barnes & Noble.

The Barnes & Noble Summer Reading Program is here to

help you on your way, encouraging you to read books of your own choosing
and earn a FREE book, simply by following these three easy steps:
1. Read any eight books this summer and record them in this Barnes & Noble Summer Reading Imagination’s Destination Journal. Be sure to let us know to whom you would recommend each book, and why.
2. Bring your completed journal to a Barnes & Noble store between May 21st and September 3rd, 2013.
3. Choose your FREE reading adventure from the book list featured on the back of the journal.

Activities | Pottery Barn Kids.

Summer is the perfect time to instill a love of reading in your child. From now through August 26th, read all the award-winning books on one of our recommended lists and qualify for fun prizes.

Half Price Books – Feed Your Brain Summer Reading Program.

For kids 14 and under:

  1. Read for at least 15 minutes each day for a month. (Grown-ups may read aloud to kids who are still learning.)
  2. Add up your minutes and have your parent or guardian initial each week.
  3. Once you’ve read 300 minutes, turn in your completed reading logto earn your $5 HPB Bookworm Bucks reading reward for the month.

We’ll award one top reader per age group each month with a TOP READER prize – a $20 HPB Gift Card!*

How about free tokens on their next visit to Chuck E. Cheese’s? Print out our free rewards calendar to get started.

Download and print out the calendar. Mark the days off with a pen or sticker as your child accomplishes their goals. Bring in the completed calendars to Chuck E. Cheese’s and receive 10 free tokens as a reward. This is an on-going program that can be used to reward a wide variety of goals.

Scholastic Summer Challenge 2013.

A free online program designed to motivate and excite your children around reading books this summer. The Summer Challenge is an easy and fun way for kids to log the minutes they spend reading as they earn rewards and help Read for the World Record.

Summer Reading Community Challenge – iVillage.

Keep your kids reading and learning all summer long with our Summer Reading Community Challenge. Join our free 4-week program and starting June 17 you’ll get daily emails filled with:

  •  Literacy-building tips from the experts at Sprout and Scholastic
  •  Games and activities to help foster a love reading
  • Printables and crafts to share with your kids
  • A daily chance to win a family trip to visit the set of Sprout’s Sunny Side Up Show to meet Chica

Summer Reading Program.

We make reading fun while teaching young people the importance of saving money. It’s just part of TD’s commitment to education – and to you.

Participating is easy:

  1. Read 10 books this summer.
  2. Print out the Summer Reading Form (343K PDF)
  3. Write down the names of the books they’ve read
  4. Take the form to the nearest TD Bank
  5. Receive $10 in a new or existing Young Saver account

Random House | Junie B. Jones |.

Personally, I am not a huge fan of Junie B. Jones, but for those kids who are, you can earn a free book.

Mensa For Kids.

Earn a commemorative certificate in recognition of your outstanding achievement and get an Excellence in Reading T-shirt, too!
The Mensa Foundation recognizes and encourages education, gifted youth and lifelong learning through programs like the Mensa for Kids Web site and other activities. To encourage the joy of reading, the Foundation has developed the Mensa for Kids Excellence in Reading Award Program!

Scholastic Book Clubs Offer | Kellogg’s Family Rewards™.

Enter codes found inside specially marked Kellogg’s Family Rewards™ packages which are only available at Walmart to collect points. Redeem points for rewards and fun. Earn $5 coupon good for credit towards a book from Scholastic Books Club.

Buy Movie Tickets Online | Showcase Cinemas. (Northeast)

Every Wednesday morning at 10:00 a.m. from July 10 – August 7, just bring a book report with you to the select Bookworm Wednesdays movie and that’s your price of admission! (TEXAS ONLY)

Just pick out 10 books and get started. After you finish reading each one, log it in the form. Be sure to have a grownup put their initials by each book you’ve read. (Parents, you can read to your children if they are too young.) When you’re done, pat yourself on the back! You’ve read 10 books. Now reward yourself with a cool prize by mailing the form and in 3 – 4 weeks, you receive your prizes.

San Diego County Fair – Del Mar, California : Reading Certificates.

Students aged 12 and younger who read 10 books and have that accomplishment verified with their teacher or librarian can bring the certificate to the Fair and receive free admission on any day of the Fair, by presenting the completed and signed certificate at the admission gate.

Reading Makes Cent$ Save for College! Promotion : ScholarShare College Savings Plan. (CA only)

The Reading Makes Cent$ Promotion is open to legal residents of the State of California who are at least 18 years of age or older and are the parent or legal guardian of a California student of any age through grade 8 during the 2013-2014 school year and who is participating in a public library Summer reading program in the State of California. Enter the promotion by completing the entry form between June 1 – August 19, 2013. Sponsored by the ScholarShare College Savings Plan.

Of course, you should sign up for the free reading programs at your local libraries.

That’s it for my massive list of free reading programs for summer 2013. Happy reading!



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