The Importance of Fun – MBFLP 224

Who said school can’t be fun? This episode, we sit down with our friends Roger and Jan Smith, long-time homeschool parents and leaders in Louisiana. The topic is simply, “Fun” – what it can do to create memories, bond family members, and make learning a lot more enjoyable for parents and students alike!

Recently we visited with Roger and Jan Smith, leaders in the Louisiana homeschool community and dear friends of ours. One evening our family and our friends were playing a fast-paced game together, laughing hysterically, and thinking about what an important, bonding thing that is.

We were noticing how well our teenagers interacted with the adults in the room, and the obvious respect going in both directions, and we were talking later about how the shared experiences build that sort of relationship. They’re more and more important as we all become more individualized and isolated, focusing on our work and entertainment through private screens—even when we’re in the same room, we’re not interacting.

That’s one reason we love audiobooks when we’re driving or working together, because the whole family can share that experience and have a basis for conversations later. It’s a good reason for reading aloud together, even when the children are reading well on their own. We try and make intentional choices to do things together so in later years, our adult children will have memories that draw them back to their family home.

Another thing we do is make a big deal over family holidays. Birthdays are an example. In our home, the one we’re celebrating gets to choose the family menu for the day. At supper, we center the conversation on memories of the birthday person. Afterward, we take turns sharing things we love or admire about them. It’s really touching – everyone loves being appreciated, and it’s very easy to overlook the chances to communicate that respect.

A Sense of Humor

Shared humor is another thing we look for. A study of newlywed couples noticed how they interacted, especially the moments of humor in the midst of a problem. It defuses situations and reduces tension if we can refer to a shared joke or inside story. It’s a sign of a healthy relationship if you can still smile, if you can still laugh, if you can lighten up in the midst of your stress. That applies to your kids as well as your mate!

In fact, that study really pointed out that our relationships are formed from the moments we share. Little things count. It’s not like you have to learn a new language to really score points with your kids. Instead, you just need to  hear when they speak, make eye contact, and come back with a positive response.

And that’s something you get a dozen times a day to do. If you miss one, just determine to catch the next. It’s something you can build up without feeling like you have to make a huge investment before you see any benefit.

(Listen in for more great ideas about building memories and relationships with your family!)

Gameschooling with Hannah Kartagener

Gameschooling with HannahGameschooling with Hannah Kartagener

Podcast #71

Gameschooling.. what? Learning with games. Since the beginning of time, children have learned through play. This was a fun topic to cover, because who doesn’t like games?   We are joined with Hannah Kartagener, who we consider to be a “game expert” and she talks with us about “Gameschooling”

While many electronic games and apps can be a good addition to your homeschooling experience, today we are talking about traditional board games and cards.

 

A great resource for reviews and instructions for play is YouTube. There are many channels dedicated to the review of board games. Have a hard time with reading instructions for play? You are not alone – YouTube is a great place to find instructions on how to play a game.

Games mentioned on show:

Traditional Games:

  • Aggravation
  • Yahtzee
  • Rummikub
  • Clue
  • Monopoly
  • Life
  • Trivial Pursuit

Modern Games:

  • Trash Panda
  • Azul
  • Forbidden Island
  • Everdell
  • Indian Summer
  • Tiki Topple
  • Cottage Garden
  • Potion Explosion
  • Blue Lagoon
  • Outfoxed
  • Sushi Go

Educational Games

  • Use Your Manners
  • Pizza Fractions
  • Scrabble
  • Jr. Scrabble
  • Ticket to Ride
  • Various math games on the market
  • Puzzles

The FPEA Homeschool Convention is a great place to find games for learning and fun – or BOTH! Register to join us and peruse our huge exhibit hall to stock your game shelf!

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

MBFLP – Christ Centered Sports

MBFLP Christ Centered SportsThis is the biggest sports season of the year–the weeks leading to the Super Bowl. Even non-fans get excited about the spectacle to come. But some Christians say that believers shouldn’t be involved in competitive sports at all. This week we look at the Biblical view of sports–yes, there is one!–and talk with Earl Pendleton, founder and director of a massive homeschool football program which truly puts CHRIST at the center.