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Super-Easy DIY Phonogram Game for Pre-Readers

Super-Easy DIY Phonogram Game for Pre-Readers

I’m not sure why this simple, homemade game has been such a hit with all of my kids. Maybe it’s the shaking. Maybe it’s the dumping. Whatever the reason, they’ve all loved it!

I wish I could recall where I heard about this game first. I’ve seen variations of it floating around, but I’m not sure who came up with the original idea for Phonogram Sound Shake. Whoever you are, thank you! 

Our Homeschool Summer Break Strewing Experience

Our Homeschool Summer Break Strewing Experience title with cardboard tubes

This past summer, I was looking for ways to keep the kids involved in something productive but not too formal (that is, no 24/7 Minecraft allowed… but nothing that would require too much work on my part, either).

Among other things, my plan included intentionally setting out interesting activities for my kids to find and explore if they wanted to (aka “strewing”). If you haven’t yet, check out the original post – Our Homeschool Summer Break – Year 5 – for a little more context and my original summer plan. In that post, I promised you an update on how it went and here it is!

How to Homeschool Successfully During a Home Renovation

How To Homeschool Successfully During a Home Renovation title on gray wood background with tools

Anyone who has homeschooled for more than one hour knows that interruptions are part of the job description.

On my good days, I try and embrace the interruptions – the many opportunities for real life training and modeling grace and patience. I totally agree with the writer of this post who said, “Interruptions are not obstacles to our plan; they are opportunities for us to embrace God’s plan.” So true.

But some seasons bring so many interruptions – so much chaos – it just seems impossible to maintain any semblance of order or sanity, much less get any meaningful homeschooling done. 

Over the past four years, we’ve renovated nearly our entire home, room by room. Home renovations are definitely one of those chaos-inflicting seasons – but there ARE things you can do to make it through.

DIY or Buy? How to Teach Your Kids Without Going Broke

DIY or Buy? How to teach your kids without going broke on kid's cash register gradient background

No room in the budget for fancy school learning tools? 

No problem!

(Even if there IS money available for the latest and greatest educational gizmos, buying more stuff just because you can generally isn’t wise.)

Please don’t feel like you have to OWN every cool-looking manipulative, learning center set and educational toy that exists in order to provide a high-quality education! 

Whether you know it or not, you already own countless items you can repurpose to teach many – if not most – concepts. Or often, a DIY option will get the job done just as well as expensive classroom tools. And, by the time you’re done repurposing and DIY’ing, you’ll have saved enough money to splurge on a few really cool items that you just can’t duplicate at home.

How to Make a History Timeline

how to make a history timeline fold-out pages

(There may be affiliate links in this post. Click here for more information.)

Well, it’s about time!

After years of historical knowledge going in one ear and out the other, I’ve finally found a system for learning and retaining history that works for me (and my kids, too)!

One of the key elements of this system is making timelines. (The other elements that work for us, notebooking and using chronological curricula, I hope to talk about in future posts).

I believe one of the main reasons I disliked and couldn’t retain history was because I’m an “overall picture” kind of gal. But in school, I had never been given the big picture of history – only out-of-order chunks. I memorized names and dates for tests and filled in the blanks on my worksheets and even did fun projects. But, to my frustration (as a child) and embarrassment (as an adult), I retained very little information about the history of our world.

I don’t even like playing Trivial Pursuit for fear that my historical ignorance will be exposed! 

(oops… the truth is out now)

Thankfully, the history curricula that we’ve used so far (Tapestry of Grace Primer and Story of the World) have both suggested creating timelines to keep track of historical people and events. 

Homeschooling with… Aluminum Foil?

It’s been noted by some that I act a little like Dory from Finding Nemo and Finding Dory fame. I guess they think I’m a little forgetful and kind of distractible at times but I don’t really thi….

LOOK! Something shiny!!!

It’s… aluminum foil!!

I knew foil could keep my casseroles covered, among other household uses. And once I had kids and started scouring the interwebs for craft ideas, I came across a lot of foil-related art projects for the littles.

But, as it turns out, aluminum foil has been a surprisingly versatile supply for our homeschool studies, too!