Category Archives: education

A Month in Tests!



Sorry I have been quiet this week. Not only have we been updating things but I have been mentally drained. See- it is that time of year again for State Standardize Testing for grades 3-5 and from googling- it is a nation wide topic! Lovely times let me tell you (enter sarcasm here) !

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Marking it right with Sharpie and @shoplet

Being a para educator I grade a ton of papers. But the old fashion Red pen sometimes just doesn’t do it. I like having fun with my students!

Recently Shoplet (sponsor) asked if I would like to try some of Sharpie’s newest colors. I just couldn’t pass this up, something new for correcting math is always a plus.

I love the colors! Lets start at the top:

The Sharpie Premium Pen. This pen has a stainless outside. It writes nice and smooth and is now my favorite pen to use on everything from my checkbook, to my calendar.

Next up are the lovely Neon Permanent Markers. Oh how fun these are to check with! They are bright and fun colors. They are suppose to glow under a black light but I do not own one to test that theory out. But they are still fun to use!

Last two colors you see are the Metallic Permanent Marker. They are in gold and silver. They are equally fun to check with!

My students loved seeing all these colors. They liked trying to figure out what color I was going to bring in next and they now have their favorite colors. This makes it a lot more fun to check Math papers with!

You can find these on for a very reasonable price along with all your other office supply needs.

Have fun shopping!

~I received the above products in order to facilitate a review. No other form of compensation was exchanged. Regardless the above thoughts are my own and honest opinions.~

Fun with Learning and EducationalToysPlanet! #Review #HolidayGiftGuide

Around this time last year I introduced you to Education Toys Planet (sponsor). My kids received a really cool marble run and are still really into it.

This year I would like to introduce another product that they have. With my kids getting older it is important to me to have something that is not only fun but helps them with their school as well. I honestly do not like electronics much. But this item I am completely ok with them having.

The Math Wiz Electronic Learning Handheld Game is a fun gaming system that acts kind of like flashcards. It will quiz your student on addition, subtract, multiplication, and division. It has the sounds, the graphics, and can even act as a calculator! It is fast pace and has 8 skill levels for your child to try to pass.

My son is having a blast with this. To him everything is a race so the quick pace is a plus! I really like how he is having fun while learning. This is also perfect because in his class he is practicing his math facts and he has to have them memorized for addition by middle of December! Great way to keep him on top of things and going!

I really love this company and their products. I highly recommend them for part of your Christmas shopping! You can find this game and other travel games on Educational Toys Planet website! You can also find them on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest

~I received the above item in order to facilitate a review. No other form of compensation was exchanged. Regardless the above thoughts are my own and honest opinions. ~

Around the World Game Review

My kids love to play games. On rainy days they can play games for hours! They even like to play the ones that are more for adults (like battleship and monopoly) and make up their own rules. Lately though, they have been playing games that are educational as well.

Around the World Board Game was created by Stacy George. Stacy has traveled the world and has embrassed cultural differences. She has taken her love for travel and teaching others about the different cultures and turned it into a fun game. Around The World will take 1-20 players on an adventure. They game has World Wonder Cards, Gems, Tokens, and over 200 trivia questions on People/Places, Language/Geography, and Cultures/Customs.

This game is for ages 8 and up. I think the way it is played is very easy to understand. It gives even adults a chance to learn something they may have not known. My son really enjoyed this and my daughter can not wait to play it. Right now she sits on a “team” with me so it gives even younger kids a chance to start learning.

You can learn more about Around the World by visiting their website where you can receive 10% off. Also check out their FacebookPinterest, and Twitter pages where amazing photos take you on a mini vacation with out leaving your home! If you follow on facebook they award one person a month a free game! They also encourage you to share your photos and each month the choose some fan photos to be featured on their blog!

~I received the above product in order to facilitate a review. No other form of compensation was exchanged. Regardless the above thoughts are my own and honest opinions!~

GeoDice World Game

Our family loves a board game! We often try to have a game night but with hubby working most nights that has been a bit difficult. But we were finally able to sit down and try a new game- GeoDice World Game.

GeoDice is a product of GeoToys. They bring you educational puzzles, board games and more for kids of all ages! This particular game is for Ages 6+

Geodice comes with a double sided board. One side has all the countries labeled while the other side has all the capital cities of those countries labeled. There are a total of 7 dice- 2 with images of continents and 5 dice have letters on it. One player rolls the dice then using the letters provided they are to list as many countries or the cities in the continents showing on those dice with in 1 minute.

In the back of the instruction book you can find a listing of all countries and cities to use as cheat sheets and to verify answers.

Now this game actualy is a really good game. It is a great way to learn some basic Geography. However, I honesty would not recommend it for age 6. At that age they are learning to write and improve their writing skills, so it takes them a bit longer to find a country or city and copy it on a sheet of paper. My son who is 7.5 also had a hard time with this although he did better at it. The other thing we had problems with were the instructions- they were not very clear on a few things. For example the turning over of the board- I took it as you turn the board to the side you are doing, my hubby took it as turn the board over so you can not see the names for what you are doing.

Over all though- I am glad we got this! My kids still had fun playing even though we just kind of winged it. I ended up turning the book to the listings of countries for my daughter to try to find that way instead of searching around a board. I think that gave her better practice of looking at the spelling of something and then writing it down. I am sure we will be playing this again!

You can order you GeoDice game from the following sources:
Rainbow Resource Center

I really do recommend adding this to your classroom or if you homeschool adding it to your curriculum. It is also great for just some extra practice at home!

~I received the above product in order to facilitate a review. No other form of compensation was exchanged. Regardess the above thoughts are my own and honest opinions~

Helping Kids Read

For those of you who are new I recently started subbing at the school for the para’s that are there. I mostly assist teachers with reading lessons and once in awhile do additional one on one reading lessons with kiddos who are starting to show signs of struggling.

Over the past few months I have learned a lot of tricks from the teachers at my kids school. At my kid’s school they learn a total of 60 phonogram sounds before they are done with kindergarten. That is their base of reading education. When we first moved to the community my son couldn’t tell them any of them because his prior school did not teach them! They worked quickly with him and now he is almost to a second grade reading level. But a lot of that has to do with having parents who are involved to. I am a firm believer that the teachers are not the only one there to teach your child. Each parent should be involved in their education some how. Be active in the class room, communicate with the teacher, help with home work, read extra and maybe do some extra studies.

Today I wanted to share one thing we are starting to do in our house.  If your child’s school does not do phonograms you may want to just work on it by yourself. Otherwise this would just be great extra practice.

First you can print off free flash cards at  You will have to cut them and glue the fronts and backs together. But it is worth it. Some of these phonograms have some cute little sayings that you can use to help your child remember them. Here are a few video clips of my daughter demonstrating the motions:

Now here are the sayings (you can write these on the back of your note cards to help you)

m = have your child rub their belly while saying “mmmm”
qu = have your child say “The letter q is always written with a u and we say “qu” the letter u is not a vowel here”
x- “ks” have your child put their arms together in an “x” fashion
y- has 4 sounds- the child could also say “y is a spy keep it away from the i “
er – “er the er of her” point back and forth to each ear
ir- “ir the ir of first”  when your child says first have them hold up their point finger like they are saying they are number 1
ur- “ur the ur of nurse” move your hand like you are tracing a necklace on your neck line
wor- “wor the wor of works” cross your arms like an x on the ks part
ear – “ear the ear of early”  stretch your arms up like you are stretching or yawning
sh- “shhh” have your child hold their finger up to their mouth like they are shushing someone
ee- “ee double ee always says e(draw a line about the e)”
ay- “ay 2 letter a that we do use at the end of english words”
ai- “ai 2 letter a that we do not use at the end of english words why? english words do not end with i “
oy- “oy that we do use at the end of english words”
oi- “oi that we do not use at the end of english words why? english words do not end with i”
aw- “aw that we do use at the end of english words”
au- “au that we do not use at the end of english words why? english words do not end with u”
ew- “oo u that we do use at the end of english words”  wave your hand in front of your face while saying it
ui – “(say the 3 sounds) that we do not use at the end of english words why? english words do not end with i
ch- for the “ch” make a drumming motion for the “k” put hand up to the throat for the “sh” put finger up to mouth
ar- “ar the ar of car”
ck- “two letter ck used only after a single vowel which say a e i o u”
ed- “ed, d, t, past tense ending”
wh- have your child put their hand under their mouth and say it as if they are blowing a feather off their hand
oa- “o the o of boat”
ey- “a e that we do use at the end of english words”
igh- “igh 3 letter i “
eigh- “eigh 4 letter a”
kn- “n two letter n used only at the beginning of a base word”

These are all really simple and really helpful. Another site I have been told to look into is  My daughter brings home a lot of extra reading from that sight to work on. So I will be looking into registering myself to have access to this. 

I hope this help you guys as much as it has helped me!

~I am not a certified teacher. These are tips that have been passed onto me by the teachers at my kid’s school. I was not compensated for this posting~