Thursday, February 11, 2010

Summer Learning Article

My article on summer learning just went online this week. Thanks again to everybody who helped me out on this one, including a first-grade teacher and lots of homeschool moms.

The article was written for ParentMap, a Northwest publication, but it has ideas that will work for everybody. If you have a Barnes and Noble near you, or a Half-Price Books (my favorite store!), your children can earn free books through summer reading. I also collected great ideas on fun math games, taking kids on outings, and looking for free days at museums.

Here are some ideas I couldn't fit in the article:
--Have a calendar corner and count down days
--Guess how many items are in a jar, then count them by 2s, 3s, or 4s
--Give two players 15 identical legos. Have the players sit back-to-back and take turns giving instructions on what to build.

Summer is also a good time to try the Diet Coke and Mentos experiment, dropping Mentos from a tube into a 2 liter bottle of Diet Coke. The eruption can go over 15 feet in the air, so wear grubby clothes and get out of the way!

Read the whole article at
"Keep Summer Learning Fun--and Free!"

Monday, February 1, 2010

Creative Parents

My friend Becca recently linked to this article about creative parents raising children: "Mum, will you ever finish that novel?"

It made me think about how I involve my children in my writing. In some cases, we're creative partners. We go visit zoos and other family destinations together, and my daughter even takes notes. We also collaborate on candy experiments, coming up with new ideas. Lately I've been asking their advice as to what we should exhibit at the USA Science and Engineering Festival.

Even when my children aren't directly involved with my projects, I tell them about any good news so they can celebrate too. Sometimes they'll even do the good-news "Writer's Dance" with me.

Thank you

Thanks to A. J. Dub who noticed that some of my links weren't working. I've fixed them (I hope), but if you see any other problems, let me know! I appreciate the help.