Life at Warp Speed

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

Educents – $10 free today. April 1, 2013

Filed under: Deals,Education,Homeschooling — lifeatwarpspeed @ 7:47 pm
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Educents Pre-Launch – Sign Up Now for your free $10 gift card!.

If you are a homeschooler, professional educator or a parent that supplements at home, this new daily deals site is pretty interesting. They will be offering a educational software, e-books, books, curricula, on-line learning, and other resources for 30 to 90% off. If you sign up today (4/1) before their launch tomorrow, you will get $10 free credit towards any future purchases.

L@WS

 

Classical Music Made Fun! Fave Pick! April 18, 2012

Filed under: Homeschooling,Music — lifeatwarpspeed @ 9:03 pm
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Amazon.com: Beethoven’s Wig: Sing Along Symphonies: Beethoven’s Wig: Music.

Beethoven once said, “If my music had words it’d be a lot more popular.”

I developed a love for classical music as a child while learning play the piano. It wasn’t until I was in junior high that I realized that most of the other kids at school had practically no exposure to classical music. And let’s not get started on the state of music education in America these days.

I really wanted to pass along my love for classical music to my son so we listened to some classical music CDs and watched Little Einsteins and HBO’s Classical Baby (both are fantastic programs). I also wanted to expose him to as much classical music because of the Mozart effect theory of helping increase spatial intelligence in a child’s developing brain and of course the strong correlation between classical music and mathematics since both tap into the area of the brain that control spatial temporal reasoning.

This CD really captured his attention (and mine) the way Beethoven’s Wig does. They do a fantastic, amusing and engaging job of creating catchy sing-a-long lyrics to the most beloved classical pieces. They weave in the theme of the music and facts about the composer and the piece. I learned quite a lot from the lyrics myself. Even if you don’t care that much for classical music, this CD may change your mind.

This is such a fun way to “introduce” classical music to children in such a fun way that children can easily identify the piece and composer. The second half of the CD are the same pieces performed by an orchestra, so you can expose your child to the fun and straight versions. The main singer on the track does remind slightly of Weird Al Yakovic’s voice in a good way. It lends itself well to a slightly comedic flavor to the singing.

These are the feature selections:

1. Beethoven’s Wig (5th Symphony, Beethoven)
2. Franz Liszt the Famous Pianist (Hungarian Rhapsody #2, Liszt)
3. Please Don’t Play Your Violin at Night (Eine Kleine Nachtmusik, Mozart)
4. Can You Can Can? (Can Can, Offenbach)
5. Just For Elise (Fur Elise, Beethoven)
6. Haydn’s Great Surprise (Surprise Symphony, Haydn)
7. Kings and Queens of England (Trumpet Tune, Purcell)
8. Drip, Drip, Drip (Pizzicato from Sylvia, Delibes)
9. Harmony (The Merry Peasant, Schumann)
10. Hey Guitar Teacher (Bouree, Bach)
11. Tchaikovsky’s Cannonball (1812 Overture, Tchaikovsky)

Highly recommended for all ages and for homeschooling families as part of the music education. I am planning to get the rest of the series of CDs for car rides and listening around the house.

L@WS

 

Halo Sleepsacks – $7.99 one day only. February 29, 2012

Filed under: Deals,Gear for Kids — lifeatwarpspeed @ 10:30 pm
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Kids.Woot® : One Day, You’ll Understand™.

Halo Sleepsack deal today from kids.woot! They only have small and medium sizes right now. Great pricing if you are in need of fleece sacks.

From my previous blog post on Halo Sleepsacks:

These would make a wonderful gift for a baby shower or for an infant..Keep your baby snuggly warm at night and safe from loose blankets in bed which is a major risk factor for SIDs (sudden infant death).

My son slept in a Halo sleepsack during every nap and at night as soon as we stopped swaddling him. He loves his sleep sacks to this day and finds it a very comforting part of his nighttime routine. Best of all, I never worry about him kicking off his blankets even now as a 3 year old. (Halo makes a Big Kids version and also an Early Walker version.) https://www.halosleep.com/

For future reference, you can sometimes find these on sale at Babies R Us and Target.com. Walmart.com also sells Halo Sleepsacks which can be ordered site to store for free shipping. Outside of the occasional woot deal, I have also found them for a good price at Kohls.com which if you can combine it with a sale and stack online coupons for free shipping plus a 15, 20 or 30% off coupon.

Highly recommended for all infants and toddlers.

L@WS

 

JJ Cole Bundle Me set $24.99 Today only! December 22, 2011

Filed under: Deals,Gear for Kids — lifeatwarpspeed @ 10:22 pm
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Kids.Woot® : One Day, You’ll Understand™.

Great price for JJ Cole Bundle Me from kids.woot for either the infant cover and hat set or the toddler size cover. I loved the lighter version I had for my son. It was great for the car seat or stroller to keep my son toasty warm without the bulkiness of a jacket or fussing with tucking layers of blankets in the carrier.

If I had lived in a colder area part of the Bay Area, I would have gotten this one instead. This is about 50% off the retail price. I love the cozy shearling lining and the therma plush exterior. It is so easy to just unzip them when they get warm or to get them out without fussing with the car seat straps. At this price, I think I would even buy an extra toddler set to use in the stroller for walks and leaving another one in the car.

Highly recommended for babies and toddlers living in areas with cold winters or chilly summers like in San Francisco.

L@WS

 

$7.99 Halo Fleece Sleepsack – Today only! November 13, 2011

Filed under: Deals,Gear for Kids — lifeatwarpspeed @ 11:16 pm
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Kids.Woot® : One Day, You’ll Understand™.

Awesome price for Halo Sleepsacks especially with winter coming on at $7.99 from kids.woot! These would make a wonderful gift for a baby shower or for an infant. Sizes S, M, and L are available. Keep your baby snuggly warm at night and safe from loose blankets in bed which is a major risk factor for SIDs (sudden infant death).

My son sleep in a Halo sleepsack during every nap and at night as soon as we stopped swaddling him. He loves his sleep sacks to this day and finds it a very comforting part of his nighttime routine. Best of all, I never worry about him kicking off his blankets even now as a 3 year old. (Halo makes a Big Kids version and also an Early Walker version.) https://www.halosleep.com/

For future reference, you can sometimes find these on sale at Babies R Us and Target.com. Walmart.com also sells Halo Sleepsacks which can be ordered site to store for free shipping. Outside of the occasional woot deal, I have also found them for a good price at Kohls.com which if you can combine it with a sale and stack online coupons for free shipping plus a 15, 20 or 30% off coupon.

Highly recommended for all infants and toddlers.

L@WS

 

Early Reading Apps – Free (Doman method comments) October 11, 2011

Filed under: Baby/Toddler,Homeschooling,Kids — lifeatwarpspeed @ 11:30 am
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App Store – Phonics Genius.

Today’s app shout-out if for 3 new free learning apps rolled out recently by Alligator Apps. Helping your child master word families and working on a specific phoneme can be tedious process. Who wants to spend precious time making flashcards? Phonics Genius makes it so easy to customize your learning, adjust difficulty, and even add your own words and voices.

App Store – Sight Words List – Learn to Read Flash Cards & Games.

Another major learning hurdle for the early reader is mastering sight words. This app covers the 315 Dolch word list. It has the same customizable features as Phonic Genius. Both have an infant learning mode which uses a larger font and red print as recommended by those parents who follow the Doman* method and want to skip the effort of making their own flashcards.

App Store – Fry Words.

This app tackles the Fry’s word list which covers the 1,000 most commonly used words in the English language. Did you know that:

  • 25 words make up approximately 1/3 of all items published.
  • 100 words comprise approximately 1/2 of all of the words found in publications.
  • 300 words make up approximately 65% of all written materials.

These high quality apps are very easy to use both for those parents that are working with infants and toddlers who are early readers and for young readers.

Highly recommended for preschool through early elementary or for parents working with babies & toddlers.

L@WS

*Glen Doman was the pioneer behind the Gentle Revolution movement. The wikipedia entry on him appears to be biased in their point of view regarding his methods in working with brain injured children. I do recognize that his theories and methods are not without controversy. However, he is fairly well known in the homeschooling world and among parents that are interested in teaching language and math to very young children.

I did not strictly follow the Doman method to teach M to read although I did use two tools that are similar in philosophy (M reads at early 1st grade level and just turned 3 two weeks ago.) I have read his books and adapted many of his techniques that worked for our family (language, math, crawling track, and bits of knowledge). The key take-away that I got and try to integrate every day is to do your teaching/your child’s learning joyously. Enjoy it, be passionate and enthusiastic. Do it only if you are both enjoying the learning activity. Be brief and quick in your learning (about 5 minutes tops). Stop before your child wants to stop. Leave your child wanting to do more and eager for the next time you do that learning activity together. If you do so, you will blur the lines between play and learning and learning will become play.

 

Lil Sub app – Free limited time September 16, 2011

Filed under: Kids — lifeatwarpspeed @ 11:03 pm
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Lil Sub for iPad on the iTunes App Store.

Another app shout out today for Lil Sub app for the iPad (normally $1.99). This very cute little app simulates a submarine exploring the underwater world. You come across all sorts of interesting sea creatures in your exploration. The app is designed to engage babies and toddlers in cause and effect play with cute graphics and a variety of songs. Normally a paid app, this is available for a limited time for free download.

Recommended for babies and toddlers.

L@WS

Update: Lil Sub has been updated since I posted this review. They have introduced a lot more interactivity and control over the objects you explore with more sounds and effects. Also, there are a lot more objects to discover. They have also added a learn to spell feature which introduces words and ocean themed objects. You pop the letters of the words of the objects that appear to hear the word spelled.

 

 
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