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Free Online Math Games from PBS

23 Apr

Here is a collection of free online math games from PBS. Most games are for elementary kids.

free online math games from PBS

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Free online books for kids

8 Apr

Since I have been working with my son on writing, and it is impossible to separate reading with writing.  I have found some great resources of free reading materials for kids.

The first one is Free Kids Books.  It offers children’s books for purchase.  Some books are free, but all books are available for free in PDF format.  You can print out the PDF and put them in binders.  The benefit of that is you can have your child draw or write on these pages, and it become the child’s creation too.

Read to Me is a website where kids can listen to books read by the authors.  A nice feature is for some books they have lesson plans that provide talking point and activity ideas.  It is a great help for parents.

Storyline Online is another site offers free books.  It is run by Screen Actors Guild Foundation, all books are read aloud by some very famous actors and actresses.  In addition to books, they also offer book related activities, which is always a welcoming feature for the busy parents who have no time to come up fun activity ideas for the kids.

Update: Now I find some more resources, and some are from comments.

Wegivebooks: is another great site for free children’s books.  Seems they have a very large selections.

Memetales: not completely free, but when you sign up, you get 15 books for free, and each week you get a new free book.  You can read it online, or on your iPhone/iPAD, or Android tablets, including Kindle.

Gutenberg project: it is a site with more than 30,000 free eBooks, either via Kindle or iBook.  Although they are not all for kids, but there are a lot kids books, including picture books.

Do you use any online resources for reading?  Would mind sharing with everyone?

How to help child in writing

26 Mar

I have been trying to have my son to write more. I think it is a critical skill for kids to have, no matter what they decide to do when they grow up.

I found this wonderful article series on ThisReadingMama. It shares some very good thoughts and tips on helping kids to write. Now thinking back, I realized I have done something wrong before.

Here is what I learned:
1. We should make the kids feel they are the author, meaning they decide what they want to write. It doesn’t mean we cannot offer ideas, but we should respect kids being the author.
2. A good way to help kids coming up ideas and structure their thoughts is to model the writing process. We work with the kids, think aloud, so they can hear our thinking process, and know how do we structure our thoughts.  Kids need know it is not a linear process, and it is ok to change from your original plan.
3. A good tip I learned is, when reading books together, discuss how other authors put together their stories. How did they start the story? How did they make the transitions between chapters, so the readers stay hooked? How did they end the stories? Before, when we talk about books, we mostly just talk about the story itself, now I know we should also talk about the writing.

I have only finished two articles in the series. If you are trying to help your child in writing, I highly recommend reading the whole series. I’d love to hear what do you think about her articles and what is your tip of helping kids to write more.

Great online resource for Pi Day

16 Mar

It was Pi Day two days ago.  I was able to find some very interesting websites that are math related.

First, is this great infographic http://ow.ly/j3yWb It is very big, probably not reasonable to print out at home.  But I was able to print just part of it for my son.

Next, I found this article with 22 free websites for Math teachers, all are Pi day related, such as Pi day activities, challenges, fun facts.  While it is for math teachers, parents can also find it very helpful.  http://ow.ly/j3zt6.

Lastly, here is a picture for everyone.  I did not create it.  I found it http://ow.ly/j3zIt.  Have fun with math!

Wife of Pi

Decide blog focus

26 Feb

Thank everyone for the great inputs. I am really touched by the support from the community. Like several comments mentioned, it is hard to maintain two blogs, but I will try. I think for this Game4Learning, I will go broad, everything is playful learning can be included here.

With that, I discovered a new website is very cool – http://www.seussville.com/. It is everything Dr.Seuss related, books and games. Kids get to play and learn at the same time. Since Dr.Seuss birthday is coming up (March 2), this could be a good site to visit after reading couple Dr.Seuss books.

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