Posts Tagged ‘character’

Free Literature Study Guides & More!

June 25th, 2014

 

It’s Wednesday, June 25, 2014, and time for Language Arts at ClickSchooling!

 

Recommended Website:

 

SparkNotes

 

Age Range: 11 and up (Grades 6-adult; children, with parental supervision)

 

This ad-supported website, created by SparkNotes whose mission is “to help you make sense of confusing schoolwork”, looks much like ‘Cliff Notes’ but it’s free!

When you get to the site you will see a menu of free online study guides in a variety of subject categories. You can read most of the Study Guides for free online. They are punctuated with advertisements (some are distracting), but it’s a small price to pay for the free resource. To give you an idea of what you can expect in the field of Language Arts, you’ll find: 

  • Literature – A stunning array of free study guides for book titles spanning from “Across Five Aprils” to “Walden.” Pick a title, click, and a new page opens that contains the plot overview, character list, a chapter by chapter summary and analysis, study questions and essay topics, a quiz, and suggestions for further reading.
  • Shakespeare – The works of The Bard are summarized and analyzed by act and scene, and includes study questions, a quiz, and more.
  • Drama – Find summaries and analysis of plays by Edward Albee, Euripides, Tennessee Williams, Arthur Miller, Eugene O’Neill, and more. Explore the suggestions for further study.
  • Poetry – From Chaucer to Yeats read the summaries and analyses of the work of great poets and try the suggested activities.
  • Writing – A remarkable grammar glossary with easy-to-find answers on everything from proper usage of commas and semicolons to superlatives and more.

But there’s MUCH MORE beyond Language Arts! In the History category you’ll find study guides on important eras in American and European history along with biographies of people of historical importance. In Math and Science you’ll find guides to Algebra, Precalculus, Chemistry, Physics, Astronomy, and more. Other subject areas include Film, Health, Philosophy, Psychology, and Economics.

Bookmark this website to keep for easy reference.

EPA Virtual Tour of a Water Treatment Plant

June 6th, 2014

 

It’s Friday, June 6, 2014, and time for a Virtual Field Trip at ClickSchooling!

 

Recommended Website:

 

EPA Virtual Tour of Water Treatment Plant

 

Age Range: 8-18 (Grades 3-12, with parental supervision)

 

Visitors will quench their thirst with the knowledge of how a water treatment plant works with this virtual tour from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). When arriving at the website, select the text link “Virtual Tour of a Drinking Water Treatment Plant” beside the drop of water image to start your tour. Then you may choose whether to view the interactive presentation in English or Spanish. After a brief introduction by “Thirsten”, a fun character who shows up throughout the presentation providing additional fun facts, the presentation begins. Following the easy instructions you can follow water from the river and through the treatment process. When arriving at the “Control Panel” you can select:
* Tour the Plant – Through the use of colorful images and audio narration, tour a typical water treatment plant covering:
o Source Water and Intake
o Pretreatment and Screening
o Coagulation and Flocculation
o Filtration
o Sedimentation
o Disinfection
o Distribution and Storage
* Classroom Exercises – Games and activities include:
o Thirsten’s Word Scramble Game
o Build Your Own AquifierAquifer
o Matching Fun Facts Game
o Thirsten’s Question and Answer Game
o The Water Cycle
o Water Filtration
o Water Tower Gallery
* Web Resources – Includes links to outside related websites

In the heat of the summer, this interesting virtual tour is sure to wet your whistle for learning.

Tell Stories with Wildlife Art

March 8th, 2014

 

It’s Saturday, March 8, 2014, and time for Art at ClickSchooling!

 

Recommended Website:

 

Art Tales: Telling Stories with Wildlife Art

 

Age Range: All (with parental supervision)

 

This is really an amazing site that is as much about learning to write a story, as it is about art. This is an activity-based site, so you must allow at least 30 minutes (probably more) to fully engage in the project. You won’t regret the time invested here. The results are worth it.

 

After arriving at the site, choose “Who will you be?”

  • Frontier Explorer
  • Field Guide Writer
  • Museum Curator

 

Once making your selection, a new page opens that presents you with a selection of wildlife art from the National Museum of Wildlife Art. Choose the pictures that you like or that inspire you. Each of your choices will be featured, one-by-one on your screen, and you are prompted with questions that cause you to think about what is being depicted by the artist. Then, you type your thoughts about that picture into a journal on the screen keeping in mind that you are creating a story based on the character you originally chose. You also get to select music to set the mood for your story! When finished, you can submit your story to be featured on the site.

 

If you prefer, you can read the story entries that were created by other visitors to the site – before you try your hand at the activity.

 

This is a great way to blend art and literature, really integrating language arts with art history and appreciation.

World Read Aloud Day!

March 5th, 2014

 

It’s Wednesday, March 5, 2014, and time for Language Arts at ClickSchooling!

  

Recommended Website:

 

BooksInTheClassroom.com

 

Age Range: 4-14 (Grades PreK-9, with parental supervision)

 

Today is World Read Aloud Day! Developing a love for reading within your children could be as easy as reading aloud to them regularly!
When you read aloud you show your children that YOU feel that reading is an important part of your life. Taking the time to discuss the text or problem solve the character’s current dilemma or even guessing the end to a good book can help to strengthen their ability to concentrate for a period of time, to solve problems logically, and to express themselves clearly. When we continue the practice of reading aloud past the early years to our children we see their vocabulary, language, grammar and writing skills prosper. Children can become aware of other places and other lives through the books we read to them. The benefits are enormous – reading aloud creates life-long readers.

We located a wonderful list of recommended titles for reading aloud. It should be noted that even though there is a lot of good information here the purpose of this website is to sell books, though you are not required to purchase any. You can check out these titles at any library and still use them in the ways suggested.

When you get to this ad supported website, you’ll find an interesting article about reading aloud with older children. The article is written to classroom teachers and discusses the beginning of the school year but all of the information contained here is easily adapted to homeschoolers. Once you get past the article you’ll see a list of read aloud titles in order of age. Each title comes with a short synopsis of the book and springboard ideas to other reading selections. Some titles also have a list of more classroom activities – these are typically listed by age group. One of the things we like best about this list is that the author takes time to help the “instructor” (in this case, we, parents) to understand how and when to progress to more complex books.

Don’t stop on the Read Aloud page though. Book mark this site and come back often to use the many free resources for teaching children, preschool through middle school, across the curriculum.

Social Studies – Truth in Advertising Game!

October 31st, 2013

Hi!  It’s Thursday, October 31, 2013 and time for Social Sciences at ClickSchooling!

Recommended Website:

Admongo

Age Range: 8-12 (with parental supervision)

This website is part of a literacy campaign by the Federal Trade Commission (the nation’s consumer protection agency) to educate “tweens” about advertising including unfair and deceptive marketing practices.

The website defines a “tween” as a child between 8-12 years old. It also points out that kids this age have money to spend and they play an important part of family buying decisions, which is why they need to become discerning consumers.

The site offers a free arcade-type game with lesson plans (developed with Scholastic) to help kids understand advertising and become smart consumers through exercising critical thinking skills. The game is called “Admongo.”

When you get to the site, I recommend that you read the “Parents” and “Teachers” sections on the menu to better understand how to fully utilize the activities and lessons offered. Then, play the game to improve your “ad-ucation.”

There are a series of levels to explore that touch upon concepts such as truth-in-advertising and marketing to children, etc. In each level you collect points as you analyze ads and move through the course. By selecting a password at the beginning of the game, you can save your game and return to the section where you left off at any time.

Kids who are used to playing video games will understand how this works immediately. Novices will have to experiment with the keypad to discover how to move their character and “jump” to collect points.  

The most benefit will come from playing this game with your children, so you can talk about the concepts of ad literacy as they are unfolded throughout the game. The free lessons and worksheets that you can access through the “Parents” or “Teacher’s” sections on the menu will enhance learning.

As the website explains, “By applying the information they learn through this campaign, your kids will be able to recognize ads, understand them, and make smarter decisions as they navigate the commercial world.”

Writing Games & Interactives!

August 14th, 2013

Hi!  It’s Wednesday, August 14, 2013, and time for Language Arts at ClickSchooling!

Recommended Website:

Scholastic: The Stacks

Age Range: 8-14 (grades 3-8, approximately, with parental supervision)

The huge publishing house, Scholastic, provides this blog called “The Stacks” (as in book stacks at the library) with free information about children’s books and authors including video interviews and more. It also provides a free online arcade of interactive games to encourage kids’ interest in reading and writing. The multimedia site is extensive and full of bells and whistles. For this ClickSchooling review, I’m focusing on the “Writing Games.”

When you get to the website, you’ll land on the Games page. Scroll down the page slightly and look for the menu of Games. Click on the fifth item on the menu titled, “Writing Games.” A new page opens with a featured game, and below it you’ll find a menu of “All Writing Games.”

The games are based on popular children’s books (for ages 8 and up) that Scholastic publishes, and includes activities that guide kids through writing activities such as:

  • Creating a Tale
  • Being a Reporter
  • Writing a Diary
  • Building a Story
  • Writing a Story
  • Creating Character
  • Writing Captions for Pictures
  • Writing Prompts
  • Making Comics
  • Writing a Journal

Some of the books that inspired the games include:

Note: The books above are linked to Amazon.com. I am an Amazon affiliate and they reward me with a small commission for books I help sell. Should you decide to purchase a book, thanks for your support. :)

If your kids are already fans of these books, they will enjoy the games. The games may also motivate children to read the books that inspired the games.

Once you explore the “Writing Games,” explore the rest of the site to meet authors and illustrators of children’s books, and find more fun activities based on children’s literature.

 

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