Six apps, two free activities for Halloween learning fun

Six apps, two free activities for Halloween learning fun

‘Tis the season for ghouls and gremlins, glowing jack-o’-lanterns, creepy-crawlies, and things that go bump in the night. Fill it with teachable moments! Help the mummy find his way home in Halloween Mummy Maze. Unscramble words and match them to the correct pumpkin face, or find the missing costume hat in Halloween Fun. Pop them open, print them out! Or buy one of the charming, seasonal eBooks below for mobile devices, starting at 99 cents!

Making sure that app time is quality time

Making sure that app time is quality time

Admit it. Even if you once vowed never to let TV be a babysitter, there probably came a day, maybe in the middle of fixing dinner, maybe when multiple members of the family were sick, maybe when the incessant refrain of “I’m bored” became too much, when you either channel-surfed or popped in a DVD and said, “Here. Watch this.” And you bought a half hour or even an hour of time to focus.

Toddlers, preschoolers and tablets: touchscreen technology begins early

Toddlers, preschoolers and tablets: touchscreen technology begins early

The first few years of a child’s life move so fast, marked by so many milestones. First words. First steps. First touchscreen device. First touchscreen device? Yes, and that first tablet or smartphone is falling into little hands earlier and earlier.
 

Cursive: irrelevant, obsolete, or super smart?

Cursive: irrelevant, obsolete, or super smart?

Cursive writing, also sometimes called script or in the U.K., joined-up writing, is at the heart of heated debate. The Common Core Standards, adopted by 45 states, focus on testable, measurable skills and leave it up to individual states to decide about including cursive in the curriculum. In 2011, Indiana became one of the first states to eliminate cursive from the curriculum; however, early this year a bill approved by the Indiana state Senate would require schools to teach it.

Study calls out flash cards for enhancing active recall

Study calls out flash cards for enhancing active recall

Flash cards, a favored and familiar learning tool for decades, continue to deliver big value at a small price. Yes, they encourage memorization, but they also develop the important skill of active recall. A January Time Magazine column highlighted findings from a report released early this year by the Association for Psychological Science. Its authors examined 10 learning tactics and rated each from high to low utility on the basis of the evidence they gathered.

17 great reading strategies from a first-grade teacher

17 great reading strategies from a first-grade teacher

Sue Leary, first-grade teacher at Peach Plains Elementary School in Grand Haven, Michigan, offers 17 reading strategies to help you help your child become a strong reader. Summer is made for being outside and soaking up sunshine and fresh air. We sometimes forget that it also opens up time for reading. Grown-ups hear about good “beach reads,” and it’s important to keep kids reading, too.