Life at Warp Speed

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

WeDo 2.0 Curriculum Pack – One cent sale! (regular $289.95) February 13, 2016

Filed under: STEM,Upper Elementary — lifeatwarpspeed @ 6:43 pm
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Built on Next Generation Science Standards, the WeDo 2.0 Curriculum Pack aids second through fourth grade educators in delivering key science content.

If you have the Lego WeDo kits which introduce robotics to 2nd to 4th graders…this upgrade kit (targeted to teachers) is only ONE PENNY right now.  Quick jump on this here:  WeDo 2.0. It’s legit…I just got this for my Jr. First Lego League team. We will now be able to get to interface with our iPads. Learn more about WeDo here: WeDo

L@WS

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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 abcjesusloveme.com (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.

http://homeschoolbelle.blogspot.com/2013/08/free-science-plans-using-magic-school.html

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.

http://www.spellingcity.com/

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.

http://www.theonlineengineeringacademy.com/ 

L@WS

 

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.

L@WS

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.

 

Karel the Robot App free for a limited time. Light-bot App always free. April 20, 2014

 

Karel the Robot on the App Store on iTunes.

I haven’t had a chance to test out this app fully, but I wanted to bring it to your attention while it is still free. This app is normally $1.99. This is based on Karel educational programming language created in 1981 by Richard Pattis, a Stanford University professor. His vision was to create gentle and fun introduction to programming for beginners and children.

This is a game based app that focuses on helping children learn logic and  problem solving skills while being engaged in an easy and fun game format. This is quite similar to the approach of the Light-Bot app, The Hour of Code version is always free and can be found here: Light-bot Hour of Code on the App Store on iTunes.

Recommended for children 7 and up. It can be used with younger children who may need some parental assistance.

L@WS

P.S. If you try out Light-Bot and your child enjoys that app, try out Light-Bot for younger children which offers more lower challenge puzzles to a(ages 4 to 8) here: Lightbot Jr 4+ Coding Puzzles on the App Store on iTunes. You can also purchase this Light-Bot app for older children that have mastered the Hour of Code version. Lightbot – Programming Puzzles on the App Store on iTunes.

 

 

Youth Spark Summer Camps from Microsoft – Free July 5, 2013

Filed under: Kids,Things to Do with Kids — lifeatwarpspeed @ 10:06 pm
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Summer Camps

Summer Camp

Since Apple has summer camps, it looks like Microsoft is rolling out their own set of free camps for movie making and game development. Register early as space if limited. Unlike Apple, it looks like Microsoft has online registration and a calendar.

For kids 8 to 12.

L@WS

 

Apple Movie Camp – free! June 21, 2013

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.

L@WS

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Apple Movie Camp – free! June 15, 2013

Filed under: Homeschooling,Middle School,Upper Elementary — lifeatwarpspeed @ 11:46 pm
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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.

L@WS

 

 
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