Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Not to Sound Like an Advertisement, But...

One of my biggest challenges right now is (and probably always will be) finding resources and ideas for activities for Scientist and I that are educational but still on his level. There are lots and lots of things out there for preschool aged kids, but Scientist is not quite there yet. What I usually end up doing is using my imagination to adapt the preschool material to fit a two year old. Sometimes it works well, and sometimes not.

Recently, I have found two recources that I really like, and I thought I would share them, in case anyone out there is looking.

#1 Highlights High Five Magazine

For Christmas, my mom subscribed Scientist to the Highlights High Five magazine (which is similar to the regular Highlights magazine, but for the younger age range of 2-6). Our first issue came today. I remember loving the Highlights magazine as a kid, and was really excited to share it with Scientist. We weren't disappointed either. They have fun little stories, games, and puzzles, that are entertaining as well as educational.

Probably my favorite story/activity in this month's issue was one about space men called Add Them Up! I took a picture of the page to give you an idea. If you click on it, I think it will get big enough that you can read the words on the side. What I liked about it is that it was clever, and pretty versatile. For the younger kids you can work on counting up the space men. Which is what Scientist and I did. But for older kids, you can use the same paragraphs to do simple addition. And if you wanted to add some of your own ideas, you could turn everything around without too much trouble and do simple subtraction. But the best part is that it's fun, so you hardly realize you're "doing math". :)

Anyways, I'm thrilled with the magazine. And I think Scientist enjoyed it enough that we could read it multiple times. Also, for anyone interested they have a website that has a lot of the same kinds of ideas and it's all free. Go to http://www.highlightskids.com/ and see if you can find anything to tickle your fancy. I think the age range is 2-12, so you can probably find something. Or, if you want to check out High Five (the one geared just to 2-6 year olds) go to www.highlights.com/highfive , on the bottom of the page in the center is a blue box called About High Five, and under that if you click on Preview a Sample issue, you'll be able to print out one issue for free. It's at least worth going and getting the free one. You can also check out your local library and see if they carry it.

#2 ABC Stuff

ABC Stuff is a blog put together by a mom with a toddler who wanted something more for him to do than play the computer and watch TV. Every week they focus on a different letter and she posts the activities that they do together. There a lots of art projects and simple math activities, and they are all centered around a specific letter of the alphabet. She is detailed enough that if you wanted to follow her weekly routine, you could. Or, if you are like us and just looking for an activity here and there, it works really well for that too. http://howethoughtsabcstuff.blogspot.com/

She also gives the links to where she finds her ideas on the web, which is another great list of resources.

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