Free Online Vocabulary Games

Free Online Vocabulary Game

70: Free Online Vocabulary Games

 

Here are the free online vocabulary games mentioned in this episode. Listen to the episode to learn about each one.

1. Vocabulary Spelling City

Vocabulary Spelling City is for students up to middle school and includes games like Hangmouse, a version of Hangman.

2. Knoword

Knoword is for teens and older and even the ‘easy’ level is challenging as you don’t get choices but must give the term with only the first letter as a hint. Stats and gamification make this fun.

3. Vocabulary.com

Vocabulary.com is available as a website or an app (the app does have a small cost). Students can either just play on their own, or you can create a teacher account and assign specific packs of word.

4. Freerice

Freerice is also available as a website or an app, and this app is free too. You can choose from 5 levels and you earn rice that is sent to countries where there is extreme hunger. You can also earn badges.

Show sponsor FundaFunda Academy incorporates some of these games in their Writing Mechanics online class.

Be sure to join our Facebook group where we can talk about this together.

If you enjoyed this episode, please subscribe to the show and give a rating and maybe even a review!

Contact Meryl via email on meryl@mediaangels.com or connect with her on Pinterest, Instagram, and Facebook

Free Online Vocabulary Games for all ages

Digital Portfolios

Digital Portfolios for homeschoolers

69: Digital Portfolios

 

These are the tools to create digital portfolios discussed in this episode.

1. Padlet

Padlet is like a giant pinboard and makes it easy to pin graphics, videos, and text.

2. Google slides

Google Slides allows one to scroll through slides to view students’ work.

3. Seesaw

Seesaw is an website designed specifically for digital portfolios. It is suitable for younger students as it has very tight privacy features.

4. Pathbrite

Pathbrite offers similar options to seesaw but without the privacy features, so better for older students who might want to send the link as part of a scholarship application or when applying for a job.

5. Build a website

Students could use free website building tools, or build a website from scratch to showcase their work. Here is an example of one my son created – Jason’s portfolio.

If your children don’t have the techie skills to create a digital portfolio, consider enrolling them in show sponsor FundaFunda Academy’s Computer Applications online class.

Be sure to join our Facebook group where we can talk about this together.

If you enjoyed this episode, please subscribe to the show and give a rating and maybe even a review!

Contact Meryl via email on meryl@mediaangels.com or connect with her on Pinterest, Instagram, and Facebook

Digital Portfolios #homeschooling #technology

Homeschool Moms Can Be Gamers

Homeschool Moms can be Gamers

68: Homeschool Moms Can Be Gamers

 

Don’t imagine gamers as teen boys who play first-person shooter games and one has to drag away from the computer. That’s a stereotype – homeschool moms can be gamers!

Merriam-Webster defines a gamer as ” a person who plays games especially : a person who regularly plays computer or video games”.

There are some many different types of games that there is really something for everyone!

Why should homeschool moms be gamers?

 
1. Way to keep up your techie skills and learn new ones

2. Good for your brain – practice problem-solving

3. Stress reliever

4. Something you can do WITH your kids. Create shared experiences trying to beat a game. Let your children be the teacher and show you how to play. Discuss Video Games as an art form.

** FundaFunda Academy, our sponsor, has a Visual Literacy class and as part of that class students study video games!

5. Something to do with your husband

Games mentioned in this episode:

  1. Framed iPad app
  2. FIFA soccer
  3. Wii Sports
  4. EA Sports
  5. Escape from Pompeii
  6. West of Loathing (Switch)
  7. Lemmings
  8. Angry Birds

Be sure to join our Facebook group where we can talk about this together.

If you enjoyed this episode, please subscribe to the show and give a rating and maybe even a review!

Contact Meryl via email on meryl@mediaangels.com or connect with her on Pinterest, Instagram, and Facebook

Homeschool moms can be gamers #homeschoolgaming #homeschoolmoms

Apps and websites to help students access reading materials and educational videos

Apps and Websites to Help Students Access Reading Materials and Educational Videos

67: Apps and websites to help students access reading materials and educational videos with Dr. Monica Burns

 

Dr Monica Burns

In this episode, we welcome Dr. Monica Burns to share her favorite apps and websites to help students access reading materials.

Dr. Monica Burns is an EdTech and Curriculum consultant, author and former New York City public school teacher. She visits schools across the country to support PreK-20 teachers to make technology integration meaningful and sustainable. Monica’s website ClassTechTips.com helps educators place “tasks before apps” by promoting deeper learning with technology.

Dr Burns’ favorite websites for reading materials

  • Epic: Currently $7.99 a month and there is a free 30-day trial
  • Newsela: free
  • ReadingIQ: Currently $7.99 a month and there is a free 30-day trial

Find more ideas from Dr. Burns here.

Dr. Burns’ favorites websites for educational videos

All these resources are free

One of Dr. Burns’ favorite tools is Adobe Spark because it allows students to easily create graphics, videos and web pages. Read more about it in her guide.

Dr. Monica Burns’ Blog & Podcast
Blog – ClassTechTips.com/blog
Podcast – ClassTechTips.com/podcast

Follow Dr. Burns on Social Media
Twitter
Facebook
Pinterest
Instagram

Books by Dr. Monica Burns

Tasks Before Apps: Designing Rigorous Learning in a Tech-Rich Classroom

40 Ways to Inject Creativity into Your Classroom with Adobe Spark

 

Don’t forget to Subscribe to the podcast so you don’t miss future episodes and tell your friends about it.

And be sure to join our Facebook group where we can talk about this together.

If you enjoyed this episode, please subscribe to the show and give a rating and maybe even a review!

Contact Meryl via email on meryl@mediaangels.com or connect with her on Pinterest, Instagram, and Facebook

 

Apps and Websites to Help Students Access Reading Materials and Educational Videos

Digital to-do lists for you and your children

Digital To-Do Lists for you and your children

66: Digital to-do lists for you and your children

 

Although there is nothing wrong with using paper “to-do” lists, digital to-do lists can be so much more convenient and flexible. Using them can help you and your children organize your lives.

Here are 3 different options to consider using:

1. Notes on your phone

When you are on the move, using the notes app on an iPhone (and something similar on other phones) is an easy way to see what you need to do. On the iPhone, you can even turn your list into a check list. Other options would be to delete items as you complete them.

2. Todoist

Todoist is available both as a website and an app.

Here are some features I really like about it:

  • Set up projects with tasks – and even sub-tasks (80 projects)
  • See the calendar view
  • Can prioritize tasks
  • Can set recurring tasks
  • Collaborate with up to 5 people
  • Extension to set up tasks right from your email(outlook/gmail) or to turn a webpage into a task (Chrome/Firefox)

3. Trello

Trello is the tool I use to organize my life and we also use it to set assignments for our Science Olympiad team. Listen to the episode for more details but here are some highlights:

  • Available os a website or an app
  • Unlimted personal boards and 10 team boards
  • Boards are divided into lists (ie ways of grouping tasks) and then lists are divided into cards. An example, you could have lists for each day of the week and then cards detailing tasks for each of those days.
  • Set up checklists on cards to keep tabs on when things are completed by your children
  • 1 free power-up per board – recurring tasks is the one I usually choose
  • You get a unique email that lets you add cards to boards when you send an email to them ie you can easily forward something that needs action straight from your inbox to your Trello board.
  • As long as your kids have access to your computer they can use it – even if they don’t have their own emails

You can find examples of Trello boards used for to-do lists on the show notes for our episode 5 Ways Homeschool Parents Can Use Trello.

Subscribe to the podcast so you don’t miss future episodes.

And be sure to join our Facebook group where we can talk about this together.

If you enjoyed this episode, please subscribe to the show and give a rating and maybe even a review!

Contact Meryl via email on meryl@mediaangels.com or connect with her on Pinterest, Instagram, and Facebook

Digital To Do Lists for you and your children

Free Online Anatomy Games

Free Online Anatomy Games

65: Free Online Anatomy Games

 

Here are the online anatomy games mentioned in the podcast.These games were shared with me by the authors of 3 of FundaFunda Academy’s anatomy unit studies. And right now until 15th January, you can get 50% off all their regular-priced web-based unit studies with code JAN2020

Golden Hour Game
Be part of a medical response team to someone with a head injury and learn about the brain.

Code Fred: Survival Mode This is a game that teaches about the endocrine system and how our bodies react to danger.

Time Zone X: Immune System – Put in the correct order various historical events related to the immune system

Whack a Bone – players first progress through 3 levels which get progressively harder to identify and “whack” the bones.
Poke a Muscle – this is similar to Whack a Bone but relates to muscles.

Not quite as fun as these last two, but the game at Realbodywork covers the organs of the body – It is basically just a “match up” game. Similarly Purpose games has a number of games where you get a list of items and must click on the correct location in the body.

Digestix – this is a cool game about the digestive system

Solve the Outbreak – this is a game created by the CDC about diseases and epidemics.

Subscribe to the podcast so you don’t miss future episodes.

And be sure to join our Facebook group where we can talk about this together.

If you enjoyed this episode, please subscribe to the show and give a rating and maybe even a review!

Contact Meryl via email on meryl@mediaangels.com or connect with her on Pinterest, Instagram, and Facebook

New Years Resolutions for Digital Habits

New Years Resolutions for Digital Habits

64: New Years Resolutions for digital habits

 

The beginning of a new year is a good time to reflect on our lives – including our digital habits. Here are some ideas for New Years Resolutions for Digital Habits.

Bad tech habits we can change

  • Track your online time for a week to see where you are wasting time online
  • Sign up for the Infomagical challenge to take a close look at your habits.

Consider signing your teens up for FundaFunda Academy’s Computer Applications class next year as it includes a module on Digital Habits and has them do the Infomagical Challenge.

Good tech habits

You need to make sure you are keeping up with tech. Try to learn something new each month – make a plan now. Here are some ideas:

  • Create digital birthday invitations
  • Use an online tool to select a meeting time
  • Do online coaching with a tool like Zoom
  • Try out educational games to use in your homeschool
  • Learn to code
  • Learn to use Google Drive apps or if you already use them, find ways to use them for projects in your homeschool
  • Create online quizzes for your kids (episode on this topic coming up soon)
  • Learn to use Trello

Bonus idea for a New Years’s Resolution

Use tech to connect intentionally with people. Once a month review a podcast, leave a comment of a blog post, message someone to thank them for what they do, reach out to someone you haven’t seen for a long time etc.

I would love to know what your plans are and how they turn out this year so be sure to join our Facebook group where we can share with each other.

If you enjoyed this episode, please subscribe to the show and give a rating and maybe even a review!

Contact Meryl via email on meryl@mediaangels.com or connect with her on Pinterest, Instagram, and Facebook

New Years Resolutions for Digital Habits #digitalhabits #homeschoolingpodcast #newyearsresolutions

Replay: Techie Family Fun

Techie Family Fun

This is a replay of episode 13. You can find the show notes here

Techie Family Fun

Replay: Tech Toys and Games

Tech Toys and Games

This is a replay of episode 12. You can find the show notes here

Tech Toys and Game

It’s Not Too Late To Send Christmas Cards

It’s Not Too Late – Send Digital Christmas Cards

A group of colorful christmas cards laid out on a table.The holidays are a season to spend time with family and friends. But there will inevitably be people you don’t get to spend time with. This provides a perfect opportunity for you to encourage your children to create digital Christmas cards. A card is always a great way to let others know that you are thinking of them at Christmas. Online cards can be sent at any time during the holidays so it is never too late to add someone to your digital Christmas card list!  

Life Skills

Not only are your homeschoolers using their creativity online to make the digital cards, but they are practicing what they have learned. They are also learning about new tools and life skills. When children and teens make digital holiday cards they will use the following valuable skills:

  • Writing: a holiday card needs at least a short message on it. This gives your children the opportunity to practice writing using good grammar and correct spelling.
  • Creativity: the act of creating the digital card will allow them to express their own personalities and make something unique.
  • Techie skills: using online tools to create digital holiday cards is a great way to help your children hone their computer skills. 

Types of Digital Cards

There are at least three types of digital cards they can create: e-cards, printed cards that they design online and interactive digital cards.

E-cards

There are many online websites that offer the ability to create and send e-cards for free. Typically there will be a limited choice of the type of card and the graphics for the card. But you do still have input in the final product and your children should be able to add their own message. 

This type of card can be created by younger children with some help from an older sibling or a parent. Even if children can’t write, they can dictate their message. Websites like Smilebox even allow you to add some fun music!

The website at Hallmark ecards has lots of cute animated cards to choose from. You can add your own message and select a font and style for the message to be written in.

Printed Cards Designed Online

Everyone enjoys getting snail mail – and your children might want to create a card that can be displayed on a mantlepiece. If they aren’t talented enough to hand draw their cards, being able to create digital cards will be a big help. Tools like Canva and Adobe Spark make designing cards easy, even for those with little artistic ability. 

You don’t need to pay to use the basic versions of these tools, and your children will really be able to be very creative in what they produce. Your only cost will be printing the card and mailing it.

Interactive Digital Cards

Challenge your children to take their holiday cards to a whole new level by coding them as an interactive card! The easiest programming language to do this with is Scratch. You can learn more about the Scratch programming language in episode 37 of the Homeschooling with Technology podcast. 

It is really easy for children and teens to learn, but if they need a little help, consider enrolling them in FundaFunda Academy’s Scratch Christmas Coding contest. Not only will they learn the basics of Scratch for just $5, but they will also be eligible to win a gift card. And of course, they will gain the knowledge of how to create a very cool interactive card that will wow family and friends. You can find all the details of the contest HERE.

Practical and Fun

As you can see, online and digital cards can be done quickly and sent out right away so it really is never too late to send them. Plus, creating digital holiday cards is simple enough for children of all ages! This project gives them an opportunity to use and learn valuable skills.  And of course, the recipients will feel loved and remembered when they receive them. So put the kids in charge of the holiday cards this year and check that task off your to-do list, mom! 

Scattered colorful christmas cards and a digital image overlay with title Go digital-its-not-too-late-to-send-christmas-cards