This is one of the farm-based education lessons from my Ellison Family Farm curriculum of agriculture-based lessons.
The Waldorf method of education is gaining in popularity, but the tuition is expensive. Learn simple, easy ways to provide the benefits of this method to your child at home.
An article on the benefits of including children with special needs in mainstream schools, and things to consider when doing so.
For teachers, parents, and librarians, a thorough list of books for children ages 3-8 which exemplify everyday diversity. These books feature diverse characters in everyday contemporary life.
Snowballs by Lois Ehlert is a whimsical children's picture book containing a family of collage-art snowmen. Use the ideas in this article to augment your preschool curriculum.
As an early childhood educator, I've seen how gender inequality at preschool hurts girls as they become observers in the classroom, not doers. When teachers allow girls to wear princess dresses to class, praise their looks, and limit dramatic play to just a kitchen area, they're disempowering them.
History and Time Travel collide in this fantastic book by Alison Uttely. Penelope steps into the past and encounters Mary Queen of Scots and the Babington Plot! Pure magic!
Homeschoolers often, and I mean very often, hear the question "But what about socialization?" Here's why this question is completely cringe-worthy. Please stop asking us that!
Some practical tips for organizing a children's story time program including finding a host organization, planning a calendar, and other common-sense logistical considerations.
As a teacher and a mother of an autistic son, I get outraged when educators deceive parents with the inclusion lie. Kids with special needs require special help and inclusion is not enough. Yes, it saves us money in the short term, but it has a long-range negative impact on kids and our society.
Honest and candid insight from a real parent. Connections Academy is an online public school serving grades K-12. This guide will help you determine if this is the right fit for your family.
Fun hands-on art lesson for early elementary children on painting a Christmas tree card in 45 minutes for Kindergarten,1st, and 2nd grade-level children. Use this with your class, homeschool, after-school program, or co-op!
Chinese New Year marks the beginning of the Chinese calendar year and each year is named after an animal. This Chinese Zodiac is an animal story based on the great race and should be in your short bedtime stories for kids collection
The transition from elementary school to middle school can be overwhelming for many students. Here are specific organization strategies to help middle school students be successful.
Erupting volcanoes and bubbling test tubes are fun to watch and more fun to make. Creating strange mad scientist concoctions is simpler than you may think using stuff already in the kitchen.
A teacher explains what phonological awareness is, why it's important, and how parents can promote it, turning their children into strong readers, writers, and spellers.
These online tools and poetry collections provide guideposts and inspire children writing and reading poems in a broad range of styles.
The Chinese Tangram Game is a cool activity to do with kids that has great educational value and is loads of fun to play. Find out its history, how to make your own, and the fun you can have with it!
Full instructions for winning middle school science fair project using robot made from NXT Lego Mindstorms.
You may remember the perceptual-motor program at elementary school: walking on the balance beam, crawling through wooden shapes, and skipping around traffic cones. It combined physical and mental tasks designed to enhance balance, coordination, and gross motor skills. It's time to bring it back!
We're at a tragic point when preschools are seen as places to prepare students for kindergarten. Not only is this developmentally inappropriate and cruel, but it also has long-term negative consequences for our nation. It results in kids who are less creative, less curious, and less communicative.
Are we sufficiently preparing the next generation for the future? An examination of the realities our kids face following graduation.
Beginning home-schooling is a huge decision and can engender terror in the hearts of parents brave enough to undertake such a commitment. Fear not, it's not so scary after all. First comes 'deschooling'...
Uniforms can help prevent bullying and violence over appearance, and discourage the theft of shoes and clothing.
If we want preschoolers to express themselves through art and feel empowered while doing so, we're going about it all wrong. Open-ended art activities (painting, drawing, and sculpting) have been replaced by teacher-directed craft projects, much to the detriment of young children.
When choosing a preschool, it's easy for parents to get enthralled by all the bells and whistles: their child learning Mandarin, doing yoga poses, and studying the violin. Yet, a former preschool teacher tells moms and dads that developmentally appropriate practices and lots of play matter most.
The Bad Beginning by Lemony Snicket, as part of his Series of Unfortunate Events, is both entertaining and educational. Follow this study guide to learn about activities that can make your reading experience even better.
Music education is highly important for young children, increasing math skills, fine motor coordination, and helping children learn the benefits of perseverance and delayed gratification. Think your child is ready for music lessons? Consider the age of the child, developmental readiness, and time commitment before staring formal instrument lessons!
Need to do well on that AP literature exam in the Spring to get college credit? Check out these tips, tools and products to get the grade you want.
It's a sad state of affairs today when practices at America's preschools don't mirror the latest findings in brain research and the critical relationship between reading, literacy, and play. Preschools are misleading parents, making them believe academic rigor at an early age is best when it's not.
Want a science fair project using your pet? Full instructions for a quick and easy science experiment for elementary students.
School doesn't have to be a boring place! Learn how to enjoy school more, along with some tips of how to earn good grades, join a sport, or join a club.
Introverts such as myself may recall middle school as the worst time in their lives. Volunteering at my son's school, I see little has changed. If teachers and administrators, though, would consider introverts when planning lessons and extracurricular activities, they could make a huge difference.
Does your child hate going to preschool? Do they come home feeling drained and wanting to be left alone? Is their teacher worried they're not participating in all the day's activities? If any of this sounds familiar, your youngster is likely an introvert and the preschool isn't meeting their needs.
Music is a useful component when working with toddlers, preschoolers and kindergarten students, with proven benefits. This article offers some tips and advice for integrating music and simple preschool-friendly musical instruments into your teaching and library story hour.
The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats is a children's picture book about a child's day playing in the snow. This book won the Caldecott Medal in 1963 with its groundbreaking illustrations of Peter's explorations of the snow. This article includes a story summary and recommendations for use in a preschool circle time or as part of a snow-themed library storytime.
Children become fluent in reading with practice, and these free, engaging reading games hold their attention and keep them motivated.
Homework is counterproductive. It causes family stress and fails to help the child learn, teaching only resentment. This article explores why.
Complete, detailed instructions, links, and videos for easy and practical science fair project for 5th to 8th grade students.
Most people homeschool for religious reasons, concerns about school safety and education quality, or because they want to be their child's teacher. Here's a look at 13 reasons for homeschooling.
Public charter schools can be an excellent school choice for many, but there are pros and cons just like with any other school. Find out how charters differ from traditional public schools.
When looking for early education opportunities for their sons, moms often choose academic preschools. A teacher argues that dads should do the picking because they know how play, exploration, and hands-on learning mold a boy.
An early childhood educator details what parents should avoid when choosing a preschool including computers, workbooks, and long circle times.
We now see the effects less play has on children with higher rates of depression and anxiety. What can we learn from other countries so American kindergarten becomes developmentally appropriate, joyful, and creative once again?
If you hear something often enough, you're bound to believe it. Busy moms and dads, juggling family and career, are highly susceptible to hearing and believing incorrect information about parenting young children. Now it's time to set the record straight on important issues affecting their kids.
This article covers five significant reasons for the importance of preschool education written by an experienced early childhood educator. The preschool aged child is eager and ready to learn.
The Montessori method of education speaks to the curiosity within each child and allows each child to blossom. Learn simple ways of creating a Montessori home environment that will enable your child to soar to great heights.
Easy and fun snow and ice science experiments for kids. Includes making frost, snow, icicles, dry ice, exploding ice, and more cool experiments.
The problem of bullying in schools is widespread in many countries. Students who experience bullying fear going to school. One way to help them is to build their self-esteem and assertiveness skills.
Do you feel guilty for not paying for your child's education? Don't. Paying for college is hard in this economy. Kids learn responsibility for their actions and have ownership in their education when they have to pay for their own college tuition.
As an educator myself, I get frustrated by the teacher-directed art that rules at schools today. The projects look the same and do nothing to promote creativity, independence, and initiative. Fortunately, parents can encourage their kids to do collage at home—simple art that inspires originality!
As our education system grows more bureaucratic, elementary school teachers are under enormous pressure to assess students and meet Common Core standards. In the process, though, they can neglect the whole child (body, mind, and spirit) and that's when parents need to advocate for their kids.
Children build their knowledge through experiencing ordinary household objects and exploring nature at playtime. Here are some fun, educational things to do with kids that will expand their world.
Choosing a preschool can be an overwhelming task with so many choices. As a former preschool and kindergarten teacher, I urge parents to pick a place with a strong and distinct philosophy that attracts a community of like-minded moms and dads such as Montessori, Waldorf, and co-op.
In this article, you will find a bit of literary criticism, written with the teacher in mind. You will also find critical literacy lesson plans for this Frances Hodgson Burnett classic.
You can stimulate language skills, imagination, and creativity through simple activities with preschool age children. Learn more about how to do it here.
Some common misconceptions and myths about homeschooling from the socialization myth to the idea that we are all religious.
Homeschoolers rate better on standardized tests than public school students. Homeschool kids outperform other students in spelling bees and other academic contests.
My husband is a comic book illustrator and over the years he has introduced me to his world. With his help, I've put together a list of comic series and graphic novels that are great for new readers.
While teaching kindergarten, I had many students enter my classroom with weak hand muscles and poor fine motor skills. It was difficult for them to hold a pencil correctly, cut with scissors, and string beads. One of the easiest ways to prevent this is making play-dough with your children!
A former preschool teacher explains how hands-on learning turns children into active learners. Their teacher is not the source of knowledge but a facilitator who encourages them to explore. Unfortunately, hands-on learning is threatened as the government involves itself in early childhood education.
Teaching preschool at home can be a fun learning adventure for you and your child. Learn about some simple preschool activities you can do at home with your preschooler to help your child be ready for Kindergarten.
This slime changes color with the temperature, due to heat-sensitive pigment embedded in the recipe.
Going against decades of research in early childhood education, preschools today have become more academic than ever. Youngsters are now guinea pigs in an experiment that may prove highly detrimental to their futures and ours.
A fun science experiment. Grow your own salt crystal garden. It's easy, and uses items you have around the house.
Is your child gifted or just bright for their age? Is there even a difference? This guide goes over signs of giftedness vs. signs of slightly higher intelligence in small children.
Same-sex or single-gender education has advantages and disadvantages, so why aren't more schools implementing this way of teaching? I discuss the advantages and disadvantages.
This article features activities in a lesson to help students with vision loss and others manage and organize money.
Reading to preschoolers can enhance their imaginations and promote dramatic play. Discover 13 classic children's books that are ideal for doing just that.
Questionnaire to help parents determine if home schooling is right for their children and their family.
Find the best books and resources for elementary school-aged kids to learn more about the human body, cells, and genetics.
Is your child ready for kindergarten? Important things to consider before starting kindergarten, a quiz to make sure, and the argument for waiting a year.
How to teach children/preschoolers/toddlers about zoo animals before and while attending zoos and aquariums.
This article features a card game developed for children with various disabilities, including vision loss and mild autism.
Calendar, craft projects, teacher-directed lessons, worksheets, and "letter of the week" are part of the daily routine at preschool but are they supported by research? A former teacher explains why they're not only a waste of time but even detrimental.
Obsession or ally? How Lego contributes to a homeschool education by developing problem-solving and fine motor skills.
Looking for a great science fair project? Love to chew gum? Here you'll find complete instructions for gum science fair projects, with photos and videos. Sample project too!
Whether you are just starting out on the homeschooling journey or are a well-seasoned homeschool parent, here's the real scoop about what matters and what you need to know.
Are you worried that your child's preschool isn't living up to expectations? Is the owner adding more students? Is she making a lot of unfulfilled promises about accelerated learning? Do you feel like your kid's creativity is getting squelched? These are red flags that need your immediate attention!
Want a fun and easy way to teach children the scientific process? Use these mini display boards to teach children this important process early.
Teaching kids about the stock market can be enjoyable and relevant when you follow kid-friendly companies that sell well-known consumer goods and products during a stock market simulation experiment.
Do you know what high stakes standardized testing is? Is your child a victim of "teaching to the test" or never-ending test prep? How is your child's education affected by test-based accountability?
One of the best things about Christmastime is all of the great books you get to read about the snow, snowmen, Santa, and hibernation, etc. You'll want to check out these 10 great books to read with your kids in December for some beautiful picks, great authors, and creatively funny stories.
This article is about why I chose to homeschool my daughter instead of giving her a traditional education in a brick and mortar school setting.
Alphabet recognition is an important prerequisite to reading and writing. Here are some fun ways to work on learning the alphabet, such as alphabet puzzles, books, iPad/iPhone games, and Android alphabet games.
Four simple activities for fourth-grade students to explore science, technology, engineering, and math concepts.
Numbers, shapes, and other mathematical concepts pop up in many of our daily activities. Share these opportunities with your children as a foundation for later learning.
Are you driving your child's preschool teacher crazy? You probably are if you send your kid to class in fancy duds, expect special treatment for your precious tyke, fret about her being bullied, and pick her up late with no apology or explanation. Find out if you're being the pain at preschool!
Recess was once an accepted part of a child's school day. With increasing pressures for academic success, many schools are cutting or eliminating play time in favor of rigorous academic pursuits. Many schools are built without playgrounds in cities like Chicago and Atlanta. Research shows recess actually boosts test scores and increases a child's attention span: some parent led initiatives are striving to bring recess back to American schools.
Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader is a T.V. show quiz game that can be integrated into your lesson plan at school or even played at home? Children of elementary and even middle school ages can learn a lot of general knowledge topics, helping them turn into well-rounded, educated world citizens.
Almost every preschool in the United States has circle time as part of its daily routine. Research, though, shows kids learn more with small group activities, kinesthetic learning, and hands-on exploration.
The Magician’s Nephew is an inspiriting magic adventure about the ancient battle of good and evil, and a protest against slavery and the unkind treatment of others (and animals), especially those under our power or authority. It is also the prequel to The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe.
Our country's obsession with an "earlier is better" philosophy is cruel to children in kindergarten. A teacher points out how homogeneous reading groups, too many standards and assessments, and the elimination of imaginative play are evidence of this.
Tips to running a toddler classroom while keeping structure and order in a room full of one year olds.
It is vital for parents and guardians of special needs children to understand the importance of having an individual education plan. An IEP ensures your special needs child will get an appropriate education in the public school system.
How do you explain space to kids? Here are some facts about space for kids, and fun activities for the whole family!
When looking for a preschool, parents get impressed by an "escalated curriculum" with foreign languages, STEM activities, music lessons, sculpture, and yoga. What really matters is a school with a strong philosophy that emphasizes a learn by doing approach: playing, socializing, and exploring.