Finding, tracking and winning scholarships

Finding, Tracking and Winning Scholarships

Episode 15: Finding, tracking and winning scholarships

1. Finding Scholarships

* Use Scholarship Search Engines
My favorite scholarship search engines:

Other scholarship search engines: Peterson’s, Fastweb, Cappex, Collegeboard, Scholarships.com

* Scholly App

* Local school websites

* Google search – “scholarship” + major / hobby / achievement etc

* Facebook – follow people like Monica Matthews

2. Tracking Scholarships

* put all scholarships and requirements and deadlines on Google sheets and share with your child
* child updates when it is submitted
* create a dedicated email for scholarships

3. Winning Scholarships

* Use Google sheets to track volunteer hours, workshops attended etc so you have all the info at hand
* Parent should research see what the chance is of their child winning anything – look for previous winners, read winning essays, watch winning videos
* Keeping it all organized on Google sheets means you shouldn’t miss deadlines, leave anything out.
* Use spell checkers / Grammarly (also human eyes!)

—> Check out our sponsor, FundaFunda Academy‘s summer challenge for high schoolers. Part of the challenge helps students figure out what they need to do to win scholarships, and where to find them. And students can win money in the challenge to put towards their college tuition!

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

Finding, Tracking and Winning Scholarships

Digital Breakouts

Digital Breakouts

Episode 14: Digital Breakouts

—> Check out our sponsor, FundaFunda Academy‘s classes and web-based unit studies for Spring 2019.

What are Digital Breakouts?

They are similar to Escape Rooms – just all online!

  • Instead of physical locks, the locks are virtual and you enter the solutions via Google forms.
  • The puzzles are online: videos, jigsaw puzzles, google maps etc might all be utilized
  • There are minimal directions – click around and think what can fit
  • The solutions can be – dates, words/phrases, numbers

Some hints to get you started

  • Dates might not be an exact date given – other info given might be needed to calculate a date.
  • Numbers – what can be counted? Are there items you could add together?
  • Look for words that are underlined / different color
  • Click around looking for hotspots that link to another web page

Why they are great

They teach critical thinking, problem solving and teamwork. And they add an element of fun to the material you are studying.

Where can you find them

* Breakout Edu
* Teachers Pay Teachers and search for them
* Google “digital breakout” + topic
* FundaFunda Academy has their own one – Mosby’s Treasure. Listen to the podcast for a coupon that will allow you to get it free until the end of January.

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 Breakouts

Techie Family Fun

Techie Family Fun


Episode 13: Techie Family Fun

—> Check out our sponsor, FundaFunda Academy’s web-based unit studies and online high school classes. They all utilize technology to enhance the lessons and also include techie projects.

These games allow your kids to be on their devices – but still participating in family games.

“Guess the song”

Use Alexa or any smart speaker and ask her to play a certain genre of music or music from a time period. The whole family tries to guess the song title – and perhaps the artist too. Whoever gets it first scores a point. Use Shazam to verify the answer is correct, or to find out what the song is if no one knows.

Sporcle quizzes

Sporcle has thousands of quizzes on every topic imaginable. The quizzes also have different styles so you can play for a long time without getting bored. Although these are designed to play alone, we turn it into a family game.

We take it in turns to select a quiz and then text everyone else the link and yell “Go”. Everyone tries to complete the quiz as fast as possible and when time runs out we see who did the best.

Kahoot

Kahoot is used in co-ops and schools as it is a fun way to do review. But you can also use it for family fun. One adult needs to sign up at Kahoot.com. Then find a ready-created quiz on a topic your family will enjoy. There are plenty of Christmas-themed ones. Once you select it and start it, everyone will be able to join the game using an access code that will be displayed on your laptop. If you can project it on a TV it makes it a bit easier for everyone to see.

Multiple choice questions appear one at a time and everyone answers on their own devices (phones, laptops etc all work). The faster you answer the more points you get. A leaderboard keeps track of how everyone is doing.

Quizizz

Quizizz is very similar to Kahoot. Try out both and see which your family prefers.

Headsup

Heads-up is a phone app available on iTunes and Google Play. The basic version is free but you pay if you add more packs or want to create your own.

Basically you divide into teams and then one person puts the phone on their forehead. A word/phrase appears and the rest of the team have to describe it to the person. Once they get it correct – or give up – they flip the phone to get a new word and you see how many a team can get correct in the time given.

Do read the review on Common Sense Media before playing as the app does encourage social sharing of videos of players and you probably won’t want your kids doing that!! But if the app is on your phone and you are controlling play, you can have a lot of fun together!

Phrase Party

Phrase Party is also a phone app that you can find on iTunes or the Google Play store. The lite version is free. This game plays like “Catchphrase”. You pass the phone around and each person has to describe the word/phrase they are given. Once someone gets it correct, they pass it to the next person. The person who ends up with the phone when the timer ends, is the loser!

All these games are great because everyone plays together and there are free versions of all of them.

If you enjoyed these ideas, 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
Techie Family Fun

Tech Toys and Games

Tech Toys and Games


Episode 12: Tech Toys and Games

—> Check out our sponsor, FundaFunda Academy’s Scratch Christmas Coding Contest. This contest is for those who can’t program in Scratch yet, as well as for those who can. There are 2 different divisions, and new programmers can learn along with video tutorials as part of their entrance fee of $5. The winners will earn themselves gift cards. Registration closes 23 December 2018.

Here are some ideas of STEM toys and games that are likely to be played with for a long time after they are opened.

If you found this useful, 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

Tech Toys and Game

How to introduce your kids to programming

How to Introduce your Children to Programming


Episode 11: How to introduce your kids to programming

Why is it necessary for children to learn to code?

1. This is where the future lies. “Career track” jobs which need coding skills pay $22,000 per year more than jobs that don’t. Half of the jobs in the top income quartile (>$57,000 per year) are in occupations that need coding skills. And, programming jobs are growing 50% faster than the market overall.
Source: Burning Glass Technologies. http://www.burning-glass.com. 2018.

2. Programming teaches logic, problem-solving, learning how to think – and it stimulates creativity. All skills students need.

How can you introduce your children to coding?

1. Hour of Code – one-hour coding activities for all ages levels of experience

2. Offline / unplugged games – Code.org has a number of lesson plans. And here is an offline game where you choreograph a robot dance.

3. Board games – Thinkfun has a number for all ages – RobotTurtles young children, Codemaster and Robot Repair for older)

4. Robotics – WonderWorkshop Dash and Dot, Lego Mindstorms, First Lego League

5. Apps – Daisy the Dinosaur, Lightbot (2.99), Kodable

6. Scratch Jr (iPad) and Scratch are easy drag-and-drop languages.

7. FundaFunda Academy (the sponsor of this podcast) has classes for all levels – Intro to Game Programming, Scratch and Python

Until 23rd December 2018 students from grades 4 through 12 can compete in a Scratch Christmas Coding Contest offered by FundaFunda Academy. There are 2 divisions – one for those who have never coded in Scratch before (instruction will be provided) and one for those who have.

If you found this useful, 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

How to Introduce your Children to Programming

Christmas Shopping the Techie Way

Christmas Shopping the Techie Way


Episode 10: Christmas Shopping the Techie Way

1. Throughout the year collect ideas in Evernote

2. Get your family to create wishlists (Pinterest, Amazon, Google docs/sheets)

3. If you need more ideas

4. Use Google sheets to keep track of what you want to buy, where you have bought it, how much you have spent and if it has arrived.

5. Read reviews before you buy – Amazon is a good place to start)

6. Be sure to compare prices at various online stores

7. Read email newsletters for free shipping and specials

8. Shop through portals to save money

9. Buy gifts that can be delivered electronically as last-minute gifts

  • e-gift cards
  • video games from Steam
  • App games from iTunes
  • ebooks
  • subscriptions – magazines, Spotify, software (eg Adobe), Kiwi crate, snack boxes, Birchbox etc

10. Use tech to “take” oversized gifts with you if you are traveling – either print out a picture or create a QR code from the picture (first save the picture on a Google doc and then use the url to create the QR code.)

If you found this useful, 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

Christmas Shopping the Techie Way

10 Techie Tools I Am Grateful For

10 Techie Tools I am Grateful For


Episode 9: 10 Techie Tools I Am Grateful For

1. Offline maps

I usually use Google maps, select the area and download.

2. Portable Charger

Here’s the one I use: EasyAcc Slim 10000 mAh Power Bank

3. Podcasts

One of my favorites is Planet Money.
If you are listening to this online and don’t know how to get podcasts on your phone, scroll to the bottom of this article to show you what to do.

4. Automatic Pet Feeder

This is the one we have: Petsafe 5 meal Pet Feeder

5. Google Drive

Google Drive is an online filing system. Listen to episodes 2, 3 and 4 for more detail on how to use it to organize your homeschool

Our sponsor, FundaFunda Academy offers 2 classes that teach about Google Drive and the associated apps.

They have a 4 module Intro to Google Drive web-based unit study on all the Google drive apps as well as a full year (1 credit) Computer Applications class.

6. Scannable App

Scannable is only available for the iPhone but it integrates with Evernote and allows you to easily scan and send documents. You can save them as pdfs or pngs. Adobe Scan is similar but for Android and iOS.

7. Padlet

Padlet is like a virtual version of a corkboard you would find in a classroom to pin children’s work.

8. Zamzar

If you have a file in a format you can no longer read, Zamzar will rescue you. It does conversions from and to most file types in seconds.

9. On-demand video streaming

If you have Netflix, don’t miss Churchill’s Secret Agents: The New Recruits

10. Online Shopping

Our next episode will be “Christmas shopping the techie way” so be sure to tune in for that.

And to say thanks for being a listener, you can go online shopping now in FundaFunda Academy’s store. You can get all their teaching resources (printable games and interactive activities) free until the end of November, with the coupon code I give on the show. Yes! You have to actually listen to get it. You can find the audio below the show notes if you aren’t already listening via a podcast player.

If you found this useful, 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

10 Techie Tools I am Grateful For

5 Techie Ways to Organize Your Homeschool

Techie Ways to Organize your Homeschool


Episode 8: 5 Techie Ways to Organize your Homeschool

1. Google Drive

Google Drive is an online filing system. Listen to episodes 2, 3 and 4 for more detail on how to use it to organize your homeschool

Our sponsor, FundaFunda Academy offers 2 classes that teach about Google Drive and the associated apps.

They have a 4 module Intro to Google Drive web-based unit study on all the Google drive apps as well as a full year (1 credit) Computer Applications class.

2. Toby – organize your tabs

Toby allows you to save your tabs to collections so you can close them – but still access them later.
Toby has extensions for Chrome, Firefox and Opera browsers to make the process even easier.

3. Evernote – Bookmark links and more

Once you go through links on Toby and find ones you want to keep, you need Evernote

It is basically a big filing system. You create notebooks related to specific topics (eg curriculum ideas, interesting websites, books to read). Then every time you find something related you save it as a note in the relevant notebook.

The Evernote web Clipper (available for Chrome, Safari, Internet Explorer (IE) 7+, Firefox, Opera, and Microsoft Edge) makes it even easier to use.

4. Trello – Organize your children’s assignments / chores

Trello is a project management system that works really well as a way to organize your own to do list and to organize what your children have to do (assignments and chores).

You create a Trello board and then within the board you create lists. For my personal board, I have lists titled: Month, week, day, doing, done. Under each list are cards containing tasks and as I complete a task I drag that card to the ‘Done’ list. Each Monday I can see what I achieved the previous week – and then I archive the cards in the Done list, create new ones for the “Day” and “Week” and drag over anything from the “Month” I plan to do.

Amy from HSP Mom.com uses Trello in a different way. She has a board with different lists for each month and plans about two weeks out at a time. She has one card that has easily “checklistable” items, such as math, and any workbooks. (Trello lets you add checkboxes to cards).

Trello for homeschoolers

Then each subject has its own card where she jots down what they do and she snaps occasional pictures of things to keep as a record of what they have done.

Trello for homeschoolers

Trello is ideal to list all a child’s assignments and/or chores and that way they can easily see what they still have to do, and if they check them off as they go, you can see what they have done.

5. Doodle – organize your social life

Trying to plan an event and find a time that works? Stop emailing back and forth to the people involved. Instead use Doodle.

I just use the free version, enter all the options I want to offer the recipients and then send it to them. It is easy to find the time that will work for everyone.

If you found this useful, please subscribe to the show wherever you get your podcasts.

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

Techie Ways to Organize your Homeschool

Homeschooling with Google Slides

Homeschooling with Google Slides


Episode 7: Homeschooling with Google Slides

Google Slides offers all benefits of Google Drive apps like easy collaboration and access anywhere you have wifi. Listen to episode 2 on Google Drive for more info on all the Google Drive apps.

Some features of Google Slides

Google Drive does have fewer features than many of the slideshow programs available, but it should be able to do everything you and your children need it to do. Here are some features I often use:

  • Import from other slideshow programs like Powerpoint and Keynote
  • Download in powerpoint format or as a pdf
  • Create animations
  • Insert videos
  • Instert shapes and lines
  • Create transitions from one slide to the next

    Start teaching your children to use it in a simple way when they are in elementary school.

    It is easy to figure out how to use Google Slides, but if you would rather your children learn it as part of a course, FundaFunda Academy (the sponsors of this podcast) offers 2 classes that include a module on Google Slides.

    They have a 4 module unit study web-based unit study on all the Google drive apps as well as a full year (1 credit) Computer Applications class, both which include a module on Google Slides.

    When your children are ready to go further with Google Slides, here are some more ideas.

    1. Turn the slides into a video

    To do this add the voiceover extension and when you are done choose to “publish on the web”. Now you will have a video to share with others

    2. Create graphic-heavy documents

    Google Slides is ideal to make simple flyers and posters. First, change the document size (Go to “File” – “Page Setup” – “Custom” and then enter 8.5 X 11 or whatever size you need). When you are done, download the slide as a png, jpg, or vector file.

    3. Produce Timelines

    Select “Insert diagram” and then “Timeline”

    4. Create comic strips

    Make a table with the number of rows and columns you want. Then use callout shapes to make your comic strip.

    5. Make Infographics

    Find icons from places like the Noun Project

    6. Write “Choose your own adventure stories”

    You can do this really easily by creating links that go from one slide to another. And of course, it is easy to add graphics and videos so all students will enjoy a creative writing project like this. You can also use it instead of a more typical written project in any subject.

     
    If you found this useful, please subscribe to the show wherever you get your podcasts.

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

    Homeschooling with Google Slides

Homeschooling with Google Forms

Homeschooling with Google Forms


Episode 6: Homeschooling with Google Forms

Google Forms is great for moms (and dads) to use it to create self-graded quizzes and for surveys. You could use it to collect responses to questions like “what field trip your homeschool group might most want to go on”, and “which date works best”.

But it is even more useful for your children to use.

It is easy to figure out how to use Google Forms, but if you would rather your children learn it as part of a course, FundaFunda Academy (the sponsors of this podcast) offers 2 classes that include a module on Google Forms.

They have a 4 module unit study web-based unit study on all the Google drive apps as well as a full year (1 credit) Computer Applications class, both which include a module on Google Forms.

How your children can use Google Forms


Google Forms are great for students to use for research projects. They allow students to learn how to

  • design good questions without bias
  • do data collection and analysis
  • validate the data people enter
  • decide on the population sample they will send it to

Although you want your high school students to be able to do all these things, you can start introducing your younger children to Google Forms and just use some of the features. Sit with your elementary age children and together create a simple survey to send to family and friends. This will help them learn what to do and as a result, they will be ready to do it on their own by high school.

Some of the features of Google Forms they should learn to use

  • Design the form – There are some basic selections of colors, fonts etc
  • Question type – What type of question will be most appropriate (multiple choice, checkbox, sliding scales, choose from a list, text or grid)
  • Validation – Must the field be required? Is there a range that respondents should be limited to? A specific format of the answer should take?
  • Branching dependent on previous answers – Google Forms allows one to specify different paths dependent on what has already been entered
  • Summary of response – this provides all the answers to each question including graphs where appropriate
  • Export to Google Sheets (click on green button on the response page) – In Google Sheets they can now manipulate the data to obtain statistics, more graphs and charts etc.

Be sure to incorporate Google Forms into your homeschool so that your children learn how to conduct online surveys. Help them send it out to an appropriate sample of people. And teach them how to interpret and manipulate the data they collect.

 
If you found this useful, please subscribe to the show wherever you get your podcasts.

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

Homeschooling with Google Forms