Tag: resources

5 Ways to Keep Poppies Busy During Winter

It’s officially winter here, which means that energies are still high even though it’s too cold to go outside and run off this steam. We’re barely into our hibernation, and I’m already exhausted! Having three high energy, intelligent children will do that. Or so I’m told. 😉 Here are some ways that I keep my kiddos entertained and not-as-destructive during the winter.

Cosmic Kids Yoga

My oldest (6) especially loves the stories on this YouTube channel. The method is more about having fun with the poses and the story than about the woo that freaks me out. It gets my daughters moving in fun ways, too. We’ll be using them a good bit this winter.

Dance Parties

These have always been a hit here. On the really hard days, sometimes it’s just easier to start over with music and dancing. And it’s so much easier with Amazon Prime’s music app (probably my favorite app find this year!) We can add all sorts of music and jam out to whatever! So fun!

Separate Play Areas

When things get too crazy, sometimes it’s just easier to send them each to separate areas to either play or nap. If there’s fighting or one sister is being too annoying, one goes to their room. Yes, they all share one room. Because of this, they are separated into the bedroom, playroom, and living room. (Sometimes I’ll even separate one into the bath tub. Because sanity.)

Lots of School Work

It would be awesome to take weeks off from school. However, when I do, my three become even more creative (and destructive.) I’m talking about paper drawn on, painted on, and scattered everywhere. Things that are just. not. okay. Now, we don’t do a ton of school work. We have plenty of days where we can have open play. But some days, when it’s been too long between lessons, they need the mental stimulation. Desperately. And so do I.

Organized Chaos

The reality is that many days, there’s just organized chaos around here. I cannot keep up with them, and most days, I don’t even try. Yes, we do work on cooperation and learning how to keep our home clean. Yes, we play outside when we can. Yes, they have responsibilities. But even on our best days, it’s mostly organized chaos.

There’s always love and understanding. But I’m just one Mama with three little girls, all ages 3-6. And I’m already more of a Type B personality, so keeping clutter at bay is always a challenge. So, some days, I smile, say it’s good enough, and turn on the TV until their daddy gets home.

How do you keep busy on these cold winter days? Let me know in the comments below! And don’t forget to sign up for emails and follow me on Instagram!

Logic of English Review

The links in this post include affiliate links. If you click on them and purchase something from the site, I will earn a small commission. It’s like your buying me a coffee. Mmm…coffee… As far as the review goes, this post is not sponsored by Logic of English, and all of my opinions are my own.

When I started looking at reading programs for my oldest, I searched Facebook groups for answers. One program kept coming up: Logic of English. Not only was it highly recommended, but those who mentioned it almost always talked about how much they absolutely loved it. After hearing so much about it, I started looking through other reviews. I was not disappointed.

After some research, I tried out the first 5 lessons with my daughter. She absolutely loved them! We flew through two in a day because she didn’t want to stop! That settled it: we had to get our hands on the Logic of English: Foundations program! And we did!

Now, I do not live in a delusion. The Foundations program is one of the more expensive programs out there, especially for homeschooling. However, the only consumables are workbooks, and those are $15 a piece. With only four needed per child, it’s not much more than other programs that require many more consumables. I have also found them on eBay and homeschool curriculum pages on Facebook, but those usually go pretty quickly. You really have to keep an eye out!

Why would I be willing to spend a pretty penny on a phonics program? Because it works.

1. Phonemic Awareness

The first half of the first level mostly deals with phonemic awareness: hearing the sounds, understanding the phonograms, and differentiating between similar sounds. There are exercises that focus on segmenting words and exercises that focus on blending them together. Before she even read one word in a lesson, my daughter was practicing blending sounds together!

2. Spell to Read

At first, I was skeptical. Would spelling to read really help her read? Is it really better than reading to spell (a method I still employ)? Simply put: yes! My daughter was struggling to sound out words at all, always guessing them instead, but having taken the time to practice phonemic awareness and then spelling to read, she is already well on her way to reading and spelling well! We have had 5 whole lessons with spelling to read, and she was more than ready to tackle the first reader when the time came.

3. Readers Without Pictures

I was so excited to see that Logic of English uses this method! The children in Foundations A read the reader and then glue each picture in its correct place. And then they can read it over and over after that! My daughter enjoyed this activity and was so proud that she could actually read it! We were proud, too!

4. All. The. Phonograms.

Not only do you learn the first sound that each letter makes, you also learn any other possible sound. Like when s says /s/ and /z/. While the first level does not get into why or when to use them, later levels go into depth. (In case you’re wondering, the first level just uses the first sounds. Easy peasy!)

5. Games and Activities!

These are optional, but they are so much fun! From matching to a game of Dragon or Slap It!, there are plenty of fun games for kids to practice their phonograms! The activities are also fun. My daughter thinks she’s getting to play games, but really? She’s learning the building blocks of the English language. She looks forward to the workbook exercises, too! Our reading time is one of the highlights of our school day!

There are other reasons why Logic of English rocks. Did I mention that it’s based on the Orton-Gillingham method and works great for dyslexics as well as those struggling with dysgraphia? Yeah. There’s that, too.

Because it works well for any kind of learner, I know I will be using this program for my other two daughters. And when my oldest is finished with it, we’ll be moving on to Essentials. It’s just that good!

You’ll notice that there are no pictures in this post. There’s just too much to share! So instead, click on the link below to watch me vlog all about it!

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