Posts Tagged ‘writing’

Word Games! & An Incredible Dragon-Themed Writing Activity

June 6th, 2018

 

It’s Wednesday, June 6, 2018, and time for Language Arts at ClickSchooling!

 

Recommended Website:

Kids on the Net

(www.kidsonthenet.com/)

Age Range: 5-11 (Grades 1-6, with parental supervision)

 

This website offers all kinds of tips, techniques, and activities to help kids learn to write well.

When you get to the site you will see menu icons in the center of your screen and a menu bar at the top of the screen.

If you’d like to just have some fun, click on “Word Games” on the menu at the top. A new page opens with interactive games that include a crossword, a metaphor and simile quiz, hangman and more. You can also try your hand at virtual magnetic poetry and much more.

For tips and techniques on learning to write well, from the main menu click on “Writing with a Difference” or “Creative Writing.” You will find activities and many examples of children’s stories and poems. There is also an “Authors & Reading” section at this site containing book reviews and advice from authors of children’s books.

This site has provided a forum for children to share their written work and is looking for volunteers to help this service continue. Meanwhile, children are encouraged to keep a notebook for the stories and poems they are inspired to write, and are welcomed to illustrate them using pictures from this site.

At the bottom of the page you will see “Monster Motel,” “Kids’ Castle,” and “Adventure Island” – where you can explore islands created by other kids. All of these are activities meant to get the creative juices flowing.

We’ve saved the BEST part for last! From the main page, click on the waving dragon at the bottom of your screen and enter “Dragonsville.” This is an online writing project with 6 segments that include various kinds of writing activities all designed to inspire kids and make the learning fun! Kids can choose to name a dragon, design a poster, write a biography, complete a story about a dragon, read other kids’ stories about dragons, write to a dragon named “Greentoes” and read his replies. It will inspire the creative storywriter in most kids.

Discover the Ancient Americas

May 24th, 2018

 

It’s Thursday, May 24, 2018, and time for Social Sciences at ClickSchooling!

 

Recommended Website:

Odyssey Online: Ancient Americas

(carlos.emory.edu/ODYSSEY/AA/aaflashfront.htm)

Age Range: 9-18 (Grades 4-12, with parental supervision)

 

Explore the cultures of ancient Central and South America with this interactive presentation from the Michael C. Carlos Museum at Emory University and the Memorial Art Gallery of the University of Rochester.

After the content on the home page loads select your topic of interest: 

  • What are the Ancient Americas? – Learn what this term means and explore an interactive timeline.
  • Who were the first Americans? – Discover the ancient civilizations of the American continents.
  • Why should I look at ancient things? – Understand why it is important to examine artifacts.
  • Mummies – Learn about the world’s first mummies made by the Chinchorros of Chile.
  • Extreme Geography – Explore the world’s driest coastal desert, longest mountain chain, and biggest rain forest.
  • Favorite Foods – Discover which of your favorite foods first came from the ancient Americas.
  • Jaguars – See why the people of the ancient Americas were in awe of the jaguar and learn about other animals they would depict artistically.
  • Camel Cousins – Learn about the camelid family and its importance to ancient America.
  • Before Columbus – Who were the people of pre-Columbian America?
  • Writing in String – What is khipu and how was it used?
  • The Ballgame – Examine the roots of modern day ball games.
  • Piercing and Painting – What did body painting and piercing represent?

Each topic sets out to explain a “Did you know?” question with text, interactive images, maps, and activities. Be sure to check out the link, “For Your Teacher,” at the bottom right of the home screen for lesson plans, teacher guides, and more.

Add this website to your list of resources for your ancient civilization and world history studies.

Explore Ancient Civilizations

May 10th, 2018

 

It’s Thursday, May 10, 2018, and time for Social Sciences at ClickSchooling!

 

Recommended Website:

The British Museum – Ancient Civilizations

(www.ancientegypt.co.uk/)

Age Range: 8-11 (Grades 3-6, with parental supervision)

 

This extraordinary set of websites from the British Museum allows you to explore three ancient civilizations.

When you get to the first site, you can learn about ancient Egyptian life, Gods & Goddesses, Mummification, Pharaohs, Pyramids, Temples, and Trade.

The two other sites are:

  • Ancient India – Learn about Early Hinduism, Buddha, and the Geography of the Indus Valley. There is a fascinating exploration of ancient timelines in India, as well as an in-depth look at the various writing systems used for recording the history of India through the ages.
  • Ancient China –  Learn about Crafts and Artisans, Geography, Tombs and Ancestors, and there is a section on timelines and dynasties as well as a look at various Chinese writing and recording systems.

At each website use the menu to click on a selected topic. A new screen opens with a picture of artwork. Click on the artwork, and a new page opens with an introduction and a menu of three choices: Story, Explore, or Challenge.

  • Story – Learn about the topic you selected through a story illustrated by pieces of art in the collection of the British Museum. For example, in the section on Buddha, the story begins, “There was once a king named Suddhodana…” These are well-written and engaging and the photograph-illustrations of artwork provide the perfect accompaniment! Highlighted words throughout the story link to brief definitions in small new pop-up windows.
  • Explore – Get a closer look at some of the artifacts and a better sense of the ancient times portrayed. This varies greatly depending on the culture and topic you select.
  • Challenge – Find an activity or game that challenges your memory of what you have learned while exploring the website.

Each topic also features a Staff Room. Don’t miss it! This is where you can get a brief synopsis of what is to be learned regarding that topic and print out worksheets corresponding to the Story, Explore, and Challenge sections.

These sites are truly worth the visit! Bookmark them so that you can return to explore each one as time permits.

Free Reading Lessons & Activities for K-3

April 25th, 2018

 

It’s Wednesday, April 25, 2018, and time for Language Arts at ClickSchooling!

 

Recommended Website:

FreeReading

(www.freereading.net/wiki/Find_Activities.html)

Age Range: 5-8 (Grades K-3, with parental supervision)

 

This website offers a free, multi-media, open-source instructional reading program that helps educators teach early literacy.

It contains a 40-week series of reading lessons covering phonological awareness and phonics activities designed for a typical kindergarten or first grade core reading program. This program is also used as an “intervention program” for kindergarten, first grade students and above who need additional help with learning to read.

That said, (and the early emphasis on learning to read at too young an age by schools aside) the resources here can easily be used for children of all ages when they are developmentally ready to learn to read.

FreeReading provides scope and sequence activities in the following categories: 

  • Phonological Awareness: Students learn to blend and segment the sounds in spoken words.
  • Letter Sounds: Students learn to say the most common sounds for printed letters.
  • Sounding Out: Students learn to produce and blend the letter-sound patterns in written words. For the first time, they read.
  • Word Recognition: Students learn to read written words without sounding them out. (Some educators refer to these words as “sight words.”)
  • Irregular Words: Students learn to read high-frequency irregular words such as the and was by sight.
  • Letter Writing: Students learn the correct way to write letters.
  • Advanced Phonics: Students learn to read words with features such as inflected endings, silent letters, and multiple syllables.
  • Letter Combinations: Students learn to say the most common sounds for letter combinations such as sh and oa.
  • Comprehension: Students learn to read their first stories.
  • And more!

All of this is accomplished with free, downloadable and printable lessons and materials such as picture cards, word cards, flashcards, decodable passages, word list generators, and much more. You’ll find audio and video aids too.

This site provides a wide variety of early literacy tools covering phonological awareness, reading and spelling fluency, and writing comprehension!

Help Reluctant Readers with Cartoons

April 4th, 2018

 

It’s Wednesday, April 4, 2018, and time for Language Arts at ClickSchooling!

 

Recommended Website:

Rudiments of Wisdom Encyclopedia

(www.rudimentsofwisdom.com/)

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

 

Many have found comics and cartoons a great motivator for reluctant readers. This website contains researched, comic-style illustrated facts about “almost everything there is to know!”

When you get to the site, you’ll see a menu with topics that include: 

  • animals
  • art & architecture
  • biology
  • geography & geology
  • language
  • medicine
  • music
  • plants
  • psychology
  • science
  • and more!

Click on any one, and a new page opens with an index of choices in that category. For example, the “Language” section includes cartoons about grammar, nursery rhymes, phrases, slang, surnames, and writing. Your kids will find gems such as: 

  • When to use “I” or “me”
  • The stories behind familiar nursery rhymes such as “Little Jack Horner” and “Sing a Song of Sixpence”
  • The origin of phrases such as “pig in a poke” and “mad as a hatter.”

Kids relish learning things their parents don’t know and this website features odd tidbits and obscure facts in every category. There is no correct sequence for browsing this site. You (or your child) simply pick topics of interest to browse, rather like an encyclopedia.

One gratifying result of having your child visit this site is the number of times he or she will call out, “Mom, did you know this?” or “Look at this one!”

And don’t be surprised if many of the facts learned on this site pop up in later conversation as well. (Some folks refer to this as “retention,” a phenomenon that seems to occur more frequently when the material is interesting and fun.)

Free story starters for writing

March 21st, 2018

 

It’s Wednesday, March 21, 2018, and time for Language Arts at ClickSchooling!

 

Recommended Website:

Chateau Meddybemps – Young Writers Workshop

(www.meddybemps.com/9.700.html)

Age Range: 3-12 (Grades PreK-7, with parental supervision)

 

You can enter your budding author’s writing to be published on the Chateau Meddybemps website and win a free t-shirt!

To whet your appetite, when you get to the website, take a look at what other children have published. These stories, found in the menu on the right side of the screen, are fun to read and will give you the confidence that your child has a good chance of seeing his or her own writing online!

To inspire your child to write a story for submission, select one or more of the “Story Starters” on the menu in the middle of the screen. These are prompts (suggestions for a story) that are formatted on a printable lined sheet of paper that includes a simple illustration. Just open the .pdf file, print it out, review it with your child, and encourage him or her to draw and write to their heart’s content! Winning entries have been as short as one sentence or as long as ten pages, and they often even include original illustrations!

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