Life at Warp Speed

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

Touchpress’s Chemistry Apps – currently 75%-80% off for a limited time July 26, 2015

Filed under: High School,Homeschooling Apps,Middle School — lifeatwarpspeed @ 12:40 am
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The Elements: A Visual Exploration on the App Store on iTunes.

This deal is not to be missed!

This Chemistry app is on sale today for a steal at $2.99. (Normally $13.99) It is a visually stunning and great supplement to anyone studying chemistry. This is far better than a run of the mill periodic table poster and really bring chemistry to life. This app was named one of the year’s top apps by the Apple Store.

My son just loves this app as he has mad love for all things related to chemistry right now. We were lucky enough to score a free one last year. After having it, this is a great deal. It really bring the periodic table to life with amazing, breathtaking images of various elements. The companion Molecules app is currently $2.99 and the Elements in Action is $0.99. The Elements Flashcards app is free. All of these are really fantastic supplement for studying chemistry.

“Elements is based on the internationally best-selling hard cover edition of The Elements by Theodore Gray, Popular Science Magazine’s Gray Matter columnist. ”

Highly recommended for anyone studying chemistry.



Educational Tech Picks March 6, 2015

This is the October 2014 column that I wrote for my co-op’s newsletter. I realized that I should share these gems with all of you as well! So, I will be posting up my other past columns when I have some more time. I just love finding interesting and sometimes unusual educational resources online that can be leveraged for homeschooling. Keep in mind that these are not necessarily Christian resources and as always please preview and decide for yourself if a particular resource is appropriate for you and your family to use. These resources may be of interest to families that supplement on the weekends, after school, or summer vacation.

ABC Jesus Love Me: Free                                                                                             Grades: Toddler to Pre-K
If you have littles in the house that are chomping at the bit to do “school” just like their older siblings and have no time to pull something together, then (AJLM) is my solution for you! AJLM is a great free biblically based, play based curriculum designed to take you from ages 2 to 5. Each year has a 36 week plan covering literature, music, character, Scripture, pre-math, pre-reading, and age-appropriate concepts and skills. This is a well-laid out curriculum with an intentional progression leading you to being ready for formal schooling at school age.

I really appreciate the way the AJLM lays out each week beginning with the supplies that you need to have on hand. Then you are given a good overview of learning objectives for the week. This is followed by a list of all the different activities and links to all the printable resources. If you scroll all the way to the bottom you will find a schedule grid with everything scheduled over 4 days.

I must say that you should not to feel compelled to use everything which might be challenging for those who are compulsive box checkers. Depending on your situation, this might feel overwhelming to you. Feel free to pick and choose what is most important to you or even slow this down and work over a whole year rather than 36 weeks schedule.

Magic School Bus Science Lesson Plans: Free                                                                                       Grades: K-3

Homeschoolbelle has made her Magic School Bus DVD series lesson plans for the primary grades. She has pulled together a schedule that takes you through each episode with suggested books to read, a project or experiment that you can do, related Brain Pop videos, and writing assignments  from about the topic. This is such a fun way to do make science interesting and accessible for younger children.

VocabularySpellingCity: Free. ($29.99 for premium access for full features. ).

Spelling City is available as an app for Apple, Droid, and Kindle users. It is also available online as well. This is a pretty fun way to practice and test spelling words though various games and activities. The premium membership does give you many more features that expand this to be a good vocabulary resource as well. The annual family premium access is for up to five students.

There are literally thousands of user created spelling lists in their database. Their spelling list search function is rather underwhelming though and not that effective to narrowing down what you are looking for. The trick though is that you either have to know the user’s account name or the list name. I have been able to find lists for most common homeschool spelling curricula (SWR, on Spelling City with a little key word searching of the Spelling City forums (forum, spelling city, ). Sometimes, when my hands are busy with making lunch or dinner, I will run the practice test and have my son write out his spelling on paper the SWR way…cursive with all the markings. It does free up some time as I can have him work on spelling and vocabulary while we are en route somewhere on our iPad. We really enjoy using it.

I was able to organize a way for our co-op to take advantage of the special pricing by having parents share access to a teacher account. If you can get enough people together and organize it, it is a great deal at about $2 per student for 12 months.

The Online Engineering Academy: ($400-$550)                                                                       Grade: High School
I just love this concept that meets a real felt need for high school students that are interested in engineering. This is something that is very challenging to provide to students without going with a college level course which usually requires calculus as a prerequisite. This is a great resource for families seeking to provide their high school students a good bridge and solid foundation for future collegiate level study in engineering.

The Excellence in Engineering Education Initiative Foundation in partnership with Auburn University has made this elective credit, four-year engineering curriculum available as an online course. These courses are taught by an engineer that is also a high school teacher and has teaching assistants who are graduate engineering students who worked through this curriculum as high school students.

The pacing and design of these on-demand courses reflects math skills that follow a traditional college preparatory progression of math that culminates with Calculus in their senior year. So, students, on a progression ending with pre-Calculus, should consider starting this series a year behind so that they are able to work successfully through the course. 



Hands-On Equations – currently free! December 18, 2014

Filed under: Apps,Kids,Middle School,Upper Elementary — lifeatwarpspeed @ 12:06 am
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Hands-On Equations 1 – The Fun Way to Learn Algebra on the App Store on iTunes.

Quick grab this app that’s gone free! Hands on Equations is a fun, manipulative based way to introduce kids to algebra as early as 3rd grade. This is normally $2.99. I don’t have time to write a review right now. I actually own Hands On Equations curricula as well. Since I have no idea how long this deal will last and love HOE, I wanted you to know about this deal as soon as possible.

Recommended for students 4th grade through pre-algebra. This can be used easily with younger gifted math students and older struggling algebra students.



Grammaropolis – Just $0.99 (normally $12.99) for full in-app features right now! August 23, 2014

Filed under: Homeschooling Apps,Middle School,Upper Elementary — lifeatwarpspeed @ 10:31 pm
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Grammaropolis on the App Store on iT


Grammaropolis is running a Back to School  deal for their app. This is an award winning app that teaches grammar in a really fun and interactive way. There are fun games and songs to teach your child how to use grammar properly. It doesn’t have to be a deadly dull subject anymore. Even better, you get assessments on how your child did on the quizzes so you can gauge mastery.

I think that someone set the price incorrectly in the Apple Store, so I would recommend jumping on this now. Just scroll down after your purchase your free trial app in the app store and click on in-app purchases. Currently the full upgrade is just $0.99. This is a major bargain since I have seen the website subscription runs $20 annually or $40 for forever access. The full app is also listed at 50% at $5.99, so don’t click on that one by mistake. Download the free version, open the app, click on one of the greyed out sections, and then upgrade with the in-app purchase feature.

Hurry and don’t miss out on this fabulous deal!

Recommended for grades 2 and up.




Free Minecraft Lessons – limited time offer July 28, 2014


Free Minecraft Lessons.

Do you have a Minecraft-mad kid in your family? Wouldn’t you like to see if you can leverage that interest into something useful like programming? Homeschool Programming is offering a series of free lessons for Beginning Minecraft Mods. There are over 100 pages of instructions on how modify Minecraft code to add new items, recipes, and MOBs.

Homeschool Programming offers a series of products that teach kids and teens how to code. This is a wonderful way to bring this sort of STEM education into your child’s life for any parent even if you don’t homeschool. You can try out their product before deciding to buy anything. Click through above link to subscribe your email to get the free Minecraft lessons. Don’t forget to verify your subscription when you get your confirmation email.

Recommended for 4th grade and up.


ETA: Got a message from them. Our website and email systems are currently down due to a DNS issue within the hosting company. We apologize for the outage, but are waiting on resolution from the company that manages those servers. This is a widespread outage that impacts many websites. You can call our office at 888-606-7263 if needed.


Minecraft Geometry Lesson – free for a limited time. July 26, 2014

Filed under: Middle School,Upper Elementary — lifeatwarpspeed @ 10:04 pm
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Minecraft Geometry Unit.

Educents has a Minecraft themed geometry lesson for free right now. This is great for kids that love Minecraft. Deal ends in 4 days.



Solar Walk™ – Planets of the Solar System App – free for a limited time June 29, 2014

Filed under: Apps,High School,Homeschooling,Middle School,Upper Elementary — lifeatwarpspeed @ 3:07 pm
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Solar Walk™ – Planets of the Solar System on the App Store on iTunes.

This is award winning app is currently free to download. It is normally $2.99. It is a beautiful app with stunning graphics. It is an amazing 3D model of our solar system. There are lots of interactive features to explore and mini-movies to learn more about different planets and features of our solar system.

One of the best features of Solar Walk is that is sync’d with the time zone you are in. It will show to the proper position and orientation of Earth and the other planets relative to the sun.

Don’t miss out on this fabulous app which is a great addition to anyone studying astronomy especially homeschoolers.



DragonBox Math Apps – currently on sale! May 30, 2014

Filed under: Apps,Early Elementary,Gifted,Kids,Middle School,Upper Elementary — lifeatwarpspeed @ 12:25 am

DragonBox Algebra 5+ on the App Store on iTunes. ($2.99, normally $5.99)

DragonBox Algebra 12+ on the App Store on iTunes. ($4.99, normally $9.99)

DragonBox Elements on the App Store on iTunes. ($2.99, normally $5.99)

Does the words algebra or geometry make your child freeze? Or do you have a math adept child that is hungry for more? This is a great set of apps to introduce your child to fundamental concepts of algebra and geometry in a fun way. Take the mystery and the fear right out of tackling higher math.

Sometimes, stepping away from the textbook, pencil and paper and just playing this together with your child could make a world of difference in removing math anxiety for older kids. For younger kids that enjoy math, this is just plain fun to get away from arithmetic drills and change things up a bit. This is even a good for parents that are feeling a bit rusty with algebra and geometry to get the brain thinking this way after many years. If you have a gifted child, this is a really great way to offer more depth and challenge.

Dragon Box has placed all three of their top-rated award-winning (many times over) apps on sale right now. I have no idea how long this will last, so jump on this fast!

You can learn more about what the algebra apps cover here: . Geometry fundamentals are tackled with really engaging fun puzzles that help kids learn and discover the logical reasoning behind all those dreaded proofs from geometry.




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