The History of Christmas Hymns and Carols

December 18th, 2014 by admin No comments »

 

It’s Thursday, December 18, 2014, and time for Social Sciences at ClickSchooling!

 

Recommended Website:

 

The Hymns and Carols of Christmas

 

Age Range: All (All grades, children with parental supervision)

 

This website provides the history behind Christmas music along with an extensive index of Christmas carols and hymns.
When you get to the site you will see a brief introduction. Below it is a way to search for a song alphabetically by title.

Below the alphabetical search box is a link to the “Full Index” of songs archived at this site. Use either method to find a song of interest, click on it, and the whole story behind the song – it’s history, tradition, who wrote the words and music, etc., is displayed.

Note: If you use the “Full Index” to search for a song, you will be surprised to see that the site includes not only the original song, but any subsequent versions or parodies of it as well. If you click on a song title – and it doesn’t look like the one you remember, go back to the index and search again for the original version of the song.

Once you are through exploring the history of individual songs, click on “History of Carols” on the menu at the top of the screen. There, you will find the history of the tradition of singing carols at Christmas from the Middle Ages through the Victorian era right up to 20th Century compositions.

Latin/Greek Root Word Holiday Puzzles!

December 17th, 2014 by admin No comments »

 

It’s Wednesday, December 17, 2014, and time for Language Arts at ClickSchooling!

 

Recommended Website:

 

MyVocabulary.com: Holiday Tradition Puzzles

 

Age Range: 6 and up (Grades 1-12, approximately, with adult supervision)

 

This website offers a variety of language arts activities for elementary, middle, and high school students to improve vocabulary, writing, and conversation including holiday-themed Latin/Greek root-word puzzles, trivia, crosswords, and scavenger hunts.
When you get to the site, you’ll see the first vocabulary puzzle for “Christmas/Holiday Traditions” that you must solve using the Latin/Greek root words and vocabulary words. Full instructions are included. Then, scroll down the page to find similar puzzles for Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, and Ramadan.

Don’t miss these other holiday vocabulary activities:

Christmas Trivia Lists – There are 9 fun trivia lists that you can print out and play offline. (Great for long holiday road trips too!) Topics include naming: 
  • 14 objects that the Grinch stole at Christmas
  • Holiday Songs with the word “Christmas” in the title
  • Songs that were #1 on the Billboard Charts on Christmas Day
  • Santa’s 8 reindeer from the poem, “A Visit from St. Nicholas”
  • 12 gifts of Christmas (from the Christmas carol)
Christmas Traditions – 24 Scavenger Hunt Ideas – On this page you’ll find a Christmas/Holiday word list from A to Z. Scroll down the page to find a list of 24 objects you might look for on a Scavenger Hunt using the vocabulary from the word list.

Winter Solstice Science

December 16th, 2014 by admin No comments »

 

It’s Tuesday, December 16, 2014, and time for Science at ClickSchooling!

 

Recommended Website:

 

SciJinks: What’s a Solstice

 

Age Range: 8-13 (Grades 3-8, with parental supervision)

 

The Winter Solstice will soon be here (for those in the Northern Hemisphere of planet Earth). It marks the shortest day and the longest night of the year. The winter solstice is celebrated by various cultures and religions worldwide. But what exactly is a solstice?
At this NASA-sponsored website, scientists provide an easy-to-understand explanation of the solstice complete with illustrations and photographs. This presentation includes information about: 
  • The Equator
  • Earth’s Axis of Rotation
  • Arctic Circle
  • Tropic of Cancer
  • Tropic of Capricorn
  • Antarctic Circle
  • Spring and Autumnal Equinox
When you’re through exploring the solstice page, use the menu to access mini-lessons and games that teach about: 
  • Weather
  • Hurricanes
  • Clouds, Water, and Ice
  • Tides and Oceans
  • Atmosphere
  • Satellites and Technology
  • And More!

Pascal’s Triangle & The 12 Days of Christmas!

December 15th, 2014 by admin No comments »

 

It’s Monday, December 15, 2014, and time for Math at ClickSchooling!

 

Recommended Website:

 

DIMACS: 12 Days of Christmas

 

Age Range: 5-13 (Grades K-8, with parental supervision)

 

This website, sponsored by Rutgers University, offers an interesting exploration of Pascal’s Triangle (used in algebra and probability) through the lyrics of the song, The Twelve Days of Christmas. Click here to just listen to the tune and see the printed lyrics of the song.)
When you get to the site, you’ll find the lesson plan and instructions for leading your students through this fun math exercise.

If you like working with triangles, the site offers another interesting lesson plan using The Star of David.

Students can also have fun calculating the cost of purchasing the 12 items mentioned in The Twelve Days of Christmas. Click here for the Lesson Plan.

Holiday Bonus! Watch a video of homeschool moms singing a humorous version of this Christmas carol retitled, The 14 Days of Homeschool.

Learn Spanish: A Free Tutorial Online

December 13th, 2014 by admin No comments »

 

It’s Saturday, December 13, 2014, and time for Foreign Languages at ClickSchooling!

 

Recommended Website:

 

StudySpanish.com

 

Age Range: 11-Adult (Grades 6-12, children with parental supervision)

 

At this website you will find free Spanish lessons and tutorials. There is so much available here for free without any sort of obligation – and even more if you are willing to become a member of the site by providing your email address. Of course, if you do that, you may get email promoting the audio course that is available for a fee. Frankly, we think the occasional spam is worth the price of admission (your email address) for full access to the free tutorials offered here. This site uses text, audio, interactive games and activities and more to help you learn Spanish. When you get to the site you will see a menu that includes:
  • Pronunciation Tutor – learn how to pronounce vowels, consonants, words, phrases and more by listening to a native speaker and repeating what they say.
  • Grammar Tutorial – learn parts of speech and how to conjugate verbs. Learn the days of the week, numbers, and more. This section is presented through text lessons, and interactive quizzes.
  • Vocabulary Tutorial – learn a series of words based on a theme – for example, restaurants, bathroom, plants, clothing, emergency services, etc. Lessons are taught through text, oral exercises, online flashcards, match games, word searches, concentration games, and quizzes!
  • Verb Drills – learn present and past tenses, as well as regular and irregular verbs through text lessons and interactive quizzes.
  • Word-A-Day – log on to the site each day to learn a new Spanish word. Access the archives too.
  • Travel Helper – learn important words, phrases and sentences that will help you when traveling. Themes include airport, hotel, restaurant, beach, downtown, meeting people, shopping, and medical care. Lessons accomplished through text, audio tutorial, and interactive games and quizzes.
  • Cultural Notes – learn about Spanish history, art, architecture, food, dance, customs and more! This is really an incredible social studies lesson – you see a photograph, information in Spanish and English, and links to websites with more info.

Other free topics include idiom generators, links to other sites, an online translator, and a list of full immersion Spanish language schools throughout the world.

This is one of the BEST SPANISH TUTORIAL sites we have seen on the web. Don’t miss it!

Christmas – 360° Virtual Tour Panoramas

December 12th, 2014 by admin No comments »

 

It’s Friday, December 12, 2014, and time for a Virtual Field Trip at ClickSchooling!

 

Recommended Website:

 

Panoramic Earth – Christmas

 

Age Range: All (All grades, children with parental supervision)

 

If the beauty of Christmas lights makes you smile, then you will enjoy this week’s virtual tour. Part of the larger Panoramic Earth website, this page offers visitors the opportunity to visit locations in Canada and England and their past light displays.
  • Locations available include: 
  • Butchart Gardens – Vancouver, Canada, 2012
  • Regent Street – London, England, 2011
  • Oxford Circus – London, England, 2011
  • South Molton Street – London, England, 2009
  • Hyde Park – London – England, 2009
  • Oxford Street – London, England, 2009
Select the panorama you would like to see by either clicking the image or the name. When the page loads, there is information from the photographer about the image and other information about location. Click the play button on the image. When the image loads you can navigate the smaller image using the tool icons in the image. Select the icon with the 4-arrows pointing in all directions to open the image to full screen. You may use your mouse to move around the image or the tool icons in the image. Click your escape button on your keyboard to return to page. Use your back arrow to return to the list of tours.

It is interesting to see how other places decorate for the holidays and these tours give visitors an idea how Canada and England decorate.

History Channel – Christmas

December 11th, 2014 by admin No comments »

 

It’s December 11, 2014, and time for Social Sciences at ClickSchooling!

 

Recommended Website:

 

History Channel – Christmas

 

Age Range: 10-18 (Grades 5-12, with parental supervision)

 

The Christmas holiday is steeped in traditions and customs. This page from the History Channel provides videos and texts relating to the history of many of the traditions practiced today. When arriving at the link you will find two sections, “Christmas Videos” and “Christmas in Depth”.
In the “Christmas Videos” section you will find short videos (usually 2-4 minutes long) covering such topics as Christmas history, food, traditions, decorations, and even a 3-minute video about strange Christmas Traditions.
In the “Christmas in Depth” section, not only are there a few more short videos but there is also informative text to further build upon what is presented in the videos. Topics covered include:
  • History of Christmas (includes video)
  • History of Christmas Trees (includes video)
  • Christmas Traditions Worldwide (includes video)
  • Santa Claus (includes video)
  • Christmas Traditions, Past and Present
  • 7 Historical Events that Took Place on Christmas
  • Why do we kiss under the mistletoe?
  • Why is Christmas celebrated on December 25?
  • Christmas by the Numbers Infographic
  • Oyster Stew on Christmas Eve: An American Tradition
  • Mincemeat: It’s What’s for (Christmas) Dinner

As always, parents will want to preview videos and material prior to allow their student to use the material to be sure that the information presented aligns with their family beliefs and standards. If you can get over the commercials embedded into the videos, there is still a lot of interesting and educational value to this website.

The Polar Express

December 10th, 2014 by admin No comments »

 

It’s Wednesday, December 10, 2014, and time for Language Arts at ClickSchooling!

 

Recommended Website:

 

The Polar Express

 

Age Range: 4-10 (Grades K-5, with parental supervision)

 

One of the best-loved holiday books is The Polar Express by Chris Van Allsburg. The timeless story captures the imagination of children everywhere. We thought it would be fun to explore learning language arts through this magical tale of a boy who takes a night-time train ride to the North Pole.

The author’s website offers an overview of the book and samples of the outstanding illustrations that earned a Caldecott Medal. You can also read the author’s bio, see a timeline of his work, and access resources and interactives themed around his books.

When you get to the site you’ll find a picture of each book cover/title. If you click on them – you will be directed to purchase the book. There is no requirement to purchase anything in order to use the free resources. Scroll past those covers to the bottom of the page to find a link titled “Teachers: Discussion Guides for all of Chris Van Allsburg books.” When you click you’ll find additional curriculum connections for the Polar Express.

Creative Writing/Language Arts:

* Brainstorm winter words.
* Ask children to imagine their own magical midnight train ride and write about what they see on their journey and what their final destination looks like.
* Go through the book together and pick out all of the adjectives and list them on a large sheet of paper. Do the same for the verbs and nouns.

Read-Aloud:

* As a way to begin using the book as the basis for a unit or simply as a treat for the children, host a Polar Express Party. Click the link to download a complete party kit.
Science/Geography:

* Have children locate the North Pole on a globe or map. They can research and write a short report on the landscape, climate, and other characteristics of the North Pole
* Topics for Further Research
o Polar ice cap
o Northern lights
o Reindeer
o Weather and climate – what are the average high and low temps?

Art:

* Have children draw what they would see out the window of the Polar Express on its way to the North Pole.

Music:
* Give each child a bell. Play holiday songs to which they can ring the bells.
* At your party, break the kids into groups of four. Give each group a song and have them come up with a way to accompany it with their bells.

When you think you’ve done everything you can, find the link to “More Games & Fun” to discover activity sheets, games, recipes, and more AND discussion guides for all of Chris Van Allsburg’s other books!
Return to this site often!

Weekly ‘Bring Science Home’ Activities!

December 9th, 2014 by admin No comments »

 

It’s Tuesday, December 9, 2014, and time for Science at ClickSchooling!

 

Recommended Website:

 

Scientific American

 

Age Range: 6-12 (Grades 1-8, with parental supervision, and fun for the whole family)

 

Scientific American sponsors this website that “features a fun, new, science-related activity every Thursday that parents and their six- to 12-year-olds can do together. Adults will find easy-to-follow instructions and simple materials lists as well as additional background to help them explain the key concepts.” All of the activities are archived at the website for on-going access, with a new activity posted each week.
When you get to the site, you’ll see a menu that includes:
*Activities – Get instructions and explanations for a bunch of interesting experiments that cover a variety of scientific topics with intriguing titles such as:
* Sonorous Science: Have a Cricket Tell You the Temperature!
* Sculpted Science: Turn Milk into Plastic!
* Staining Science: Capillary Action of Dyed Water in Plants
* Spinning Science: Centripetal Force Using Marbles in Jell-O
* Spurting Science: Erupting Diet Coke with Mentos
*Video – Watch entertaining videos that demonstrate fun scientific experiments such as:
* How to Make A Homemade Compass
* How to Make Mini-Craters with Mini-Meteors
* How to Make Oobleck
*Blog – Read a selection of blog posts that encourage learning science at home.
When you’re through checking out what’s available in the “Bring Science Home” section, be sure to explore the rest of the massive Scientific American site. Click on the “Education” and “Citizen Science” tabs on the horizontal menu at the top of the page for more incredible science activities and volunteer research opportunities for budding scientists of all ages.

Hot Math!

December 8th, 2014 by admin No comments »

 

It’s Monday, December 8, 2014, and time for Math at ClickSchooling!

 

Recommended Website:

 

Hotmath.com

 

Age Range: 10-18 (Grades 7-11, with parental supervision)

 

This website offers free math activities and games for middle and high school students to learn graphing, factoring, and divisibility in a fun way, all online!

When you get to the site you will see the following choices:

I. HANDS ON MATH LEARNING – This area includes:
*Pre-Algebra Activities – Algebra Tiles, Acrobat Number Line, Circle Area Approximation, Data Representation, Area Decomposer, Fraction Tech Tool, and other titles
*Algebra I Activities – Exponential Functions, Exponential and Log Functions, Quadratic Equations in Factored Form, Diamond Problem Flash Cards, etc.
*Algebra II and Trigonometry Activities – Function Grapher, Conic Sections – General Form, Hyperbolas, Ellipses and more.
*Geometry Activities – Angle Sum Theorem, Exterior Angles of a Polygon, Conics, Conics – Parabola, Area of a Triangle and many more activities.
II. MATH GAMES
Click on the words “Math Games” to enter the game page. You will find the following games:
*Catch the Fly – Give Mr. Frog the x,y coordinates so he can dine!
*Number Cop – Speed through divisible numbers and try not to crash into the wrong numbers!
*Algebra vs. the Cockroaches – What axis are the cockroaches running through? Game can be played with or without sound.
*Factortris – Similar to “Tetris” but with a new dimension. You build the dimensions needed by solving the equation and place them where you want them. If you let the time run out, the game builds the piece and you will not have a choice on placement.
These online games and activities are a great way to learn math concepts at any age!
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