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5 Tips for Selecting Preschool for Shy Kids

5 Tips for Selecting Preschool for Shy Kids

Your sweet adorable little one has reached the preschool age and I’m sure one thing that is on your mind is what is the best setting for my child.  Those of you attempting to help your child overcome shyness may find it especially challenging to find the perfect fit for your little one.  I thought these tips would be helpful for those of you in the process of selecting a preschool for shy kids. Check to see if the preschool has a flexible schedule.  Enrolling your child in a school with a flexible schedule may be easier so that one parent could be present for a portion of the day.  You may also want to have the ability to stop by at any given time to check on your child.   Have a school connected to family. If your child has a sibling who is older and attending school, try to get your child entering preschool to attend the same school.  Your preschooler may have some comfort knowing that they have an older sibling down the hall. Spend significant time in the classroom.  Some children need time to adjust to their new environment.  If its possible go there together with your child, and spend some time in the classroom, going on field trips, or helping out with classroom projects.   Start of slow and build up.  Initially it may be a difficult time for your child.  They may cry a lot, but with persistence, your child will adjust well. Some additional things to look for include: Flexibility in their agenda The ability of the parent to be nearby or...
Easy Tips for Science Fair Project Ideas

Easy Tips for Science Fair Project Ideas

Easy Tips for Science Fair Project Ideas Although it is the middle of winter and thinking of spring seems far from our minds, but it will be here before you know it.  Spring generally comes during science fairs for most schools.  When you are starting from scratch science fair projects can be daunting. However, with these easy tips for science fair project ideas, you and your child can come up with an engaging project in no time! Brainstorm Many Different Questions Talk with your child and have them ask questions that they want an answer to.  Here are some questions that would require some research to find an answer suitable for a science fair project. Why are rainbow colors always in the same order? Why is the electricity in the batteries of a toy harmless to us, but the electricity in the walls of your house or lightning in the sky harmful? Does water make a sound just before it boils?  If so what is it and what causes that sound? How does skin heal after it is burned? What causes it to blister? What is the best way for it to heal? How do bees know where their hive is located? What does a hair follicle look like? How does a hair grow out of it?  How long can hair grow if it is never cut? Children are highly inquisitive and will come up with questions that adults may not have thought about.  Allow your child to use their imagination.  Then you can shape it up with the research.  The most important part in having a successful science...
Do I Talk? -Tips for Teaching Your Child

Do I Talk? -Tips for Teaching Your Child

  Do I Talk? As soon as our bundle of joy enters the world, a million thoughts come across our mind.  We wonder will I be a good parent?  How will I manage with a full time job? Many, many more concerns float in and out our minds.  One common thought is how will I teach my child everything they need to know to make it in this world.  Regardless who we are when it comes to our children we want the best for them.   This is why I wanted to provide some tips for teaching your child. Begin reading to your child during pregnancy or shortly after your child is born.  You can start with nursery rhymes, or simple stories. Explain what things are and how they are used.  Although your child is not able to respond back rest assured they are indeed absorbing and listening. Although your child is a baby do your best to limit baby talk.  Talk to them as if you are talking to an adult.  This will model to them how language is spoken. Take your child on many “excursions.”  They don’t have to be fancy, it could be something like the grocery store.  There are many products and produce available to discuss.  You can discuss colors, types of vegetables and fruits.  Meats, fish and poultry, and even canned food can be looked at. It is also excellent for teaching numbers by saying, “I’m going to put 6 apples in the bag.”  Count them with your child. Cook meals or bake with your child.  This is not only excellent bonding time but a...
This Day in History-Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

This Day in History-Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

This Day in History-Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. is a day to celebrate being kind and respecting each other for our differences.  When the kids are out of school,  it is an excellent opportunity to remind them what this holiday means and the significance of this day in history.  The celebration of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. is delightfully explained in this video from Reading Rainbow Partners. LeVar Burton begins with an explanation of who Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. is with actual photos of Dr. King Jr.   Then he continues by leading you to Friendship Baptist Church, the actual church in Pasadena, California where Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was a pastor to share the story A Picture Book of Martin Luther King, Jr. (Picture Book Biography) (Picture Book Biographies) to listeners. What I liked about the video presented  by Reading Rainbow is the combination of a picture book along with excerpts from Dr. Martin Luther King Speeches.  I believe that it provides a perfect explanation for children to understand who Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was and what he stood for throughout the course of his life.   After watching this engaging video,  I’m sure you will find the book A Picture Book of Martin Luther King, Jr. (Picture Book Biography) (Picture Book Biographies) one that you will enjoy reading to your child throughout the year. All the Best, Tania Sims Smart and Snazzy Kids...
Happy New Year!  We’re Back!

Happy New Year! We’re Back!

Happy New Year!     I want to extend a sincere apology to those following my blog.  Recently, I experienced a family emergency which prevented me from writing about one of my favorite topics. KIDS!  However, now I am back and ready to start 2016 off with lots of fresh new content, that is useful to my many parents out there who often struggle to find new and engaging activities that extend beyond the classroom. My goal is to assist you and help provide strategies that will be beneficial to your child.  Again,  thank you for your patience, and I look forward to a long lasting relationship as we work together to teach and make your child very well rounded. Thanks again to my Snazzy Community who help to contribute to making learning successful and meaningful to the children in their lives. All the Best, Happy New Year! Tania Sims        ...
Tips for Developing Reading Fluency

Tips for Developing Reading Fluency

Tips for Developing Reading Fluency Learning to read is the most important skill for kids to master.  Reading is in all subjects.  Reading fluency is being able to read correctly, with speed,  and with proper expression. During the early years, children learn to read with fluency so that they can read to learn later.  Reading fluency is extremely important for understanding what they are reading. Here are some tips for developing reading fluency for your child. Have your child use materials which interest them. Use short stories or articles from magazines, or picture books.  Find materials that will interest your child and that is at their developmental level.  Read a variety of material like, museum descriptions, news magazines, fashion or technical magazines. This will help them be a flexible reader as well as exposure to several different concepts. Writing letters to family and friends develops reading fluency.  (Remember reading and writing go hand in hand.) Help your child understand the purpose for writing so they can make a connection between writer’s style and the material in front of them.  That helps your child read more critically and predict what they read.   Select books with rhyming words, alliteration and repetition of the most common high-frequency words in order to aid recognition of the common words. Read short stories and talk about them. Then have your child reread the story and talk about the story. Finally, have your child reread the story silently and share their fluency by sharing a passage or page aloud. This is an excellent way to solidify skills in reading (fluency, decoding, vocabulary) and comprehension of...
Essay Writing Software- Grammarly Review

Essay Writing Software- Grammarly Review

Essay Writing Software-Grammarly Review Now that school has resumed, the assignments start.  One area of instruction is writing.  Once your child has entered the upper grades more detailed writing is expected.  Recently, I discovered an essay writing software, Grammarly, that promises to have your child’s papers, essays, reviewed and edited.  Your child will personally feel confident because they will have taken an extra step to ensure high-quality writing material. Features  Corrects basic & advanced errors for complete confidence in your writing 250+ points of grammar Sentence structure Style checks Vocabulary enhancement The World’s Best Grammar Checker Document type checker There is a support system who returns responses very quickly. Review After subscribing and using Grammarly, I found it to be extremely helpful in detecting grammar and spelling mistakes.  One feature that I found especially helpful is the online editor.  It lets you store all of your documents and access them anytime you need. The Grammarly online tool assists in punctuation, sentence structure, and style.  Grammarly can be used not just to correct your child’s mistakes, but it can be used as a learning tool to reinforce why that sentence structure and style may not have worked. Although, I believe that Grammarly is highly effective in detecting many mistakes in writing, it is best to use it as a final step prior to submitting any academic paper.  Prior to using Grammarly, I would suggest having your child proofread their work.  It will allow them to learn more about their writing style and the adjustments needed for improvements.   One disadvantage of Grammarly Premium is it is not supported on Mac.  However,...
Career Day on Labor Day!

Career Day on Labor Day!

Career Day on Labor Day! Let’s have a career day on Labor Day!  This day is devoted to workers in the United States.  It is also the last official day of summer.  Many kids have already started the school year, and some are starting right after the holiday.  So while you are at home relaxing, why not slip in an extra activity before heading back? Use Labor Day as an opportunity to learn about jobs, careers, and entrepreneurship.  Give your child a head start by taking a tour through your neighborhood, and talking about the different jobs that people do.  Locate someone who is an entrepreneur.  Talk to them and learn how they were able to start their own business.  Discuss this with your child so they can learn about their journey.  Then have your child illustrate a book about all the careers they discovered. Steps to Arouse your Child’s Interest Tell your child that Labor Day is a day to honor working Americans. Walk or drive around in your neighborhood and take note of the variety of jobs they notice. Conduct an interview with an entrepreneur. Ask your child questions about the kind of business, what kind of work they do there, and what kind of equipment or tools the employees use to do their job. Tell your child about your job and the jobs of people in your family.  Help your child understand that all of these different businesses help people by giving items that they use or by helping people in the neighborhood, city, or around the world. When you get home make a “job book”...
Learning to Add with Cards

Learning to Add with Cards

Learning to Add with Cards Now that the kids are in school, its time to think of ways to keep them motivated to learn.  For some children adding can be a challenge, Learning to add with cards is excellent for reinforcing addition with your kids.  Its a great activity to do on the weekends or during some spare time during the week.  Learning to add with cards using an idea from the well known War game.  War is a great way to help your child learn addition.  This activity is that it’s fun, it can be played just about anywhere, and best of all, it’ll help your child master his addition skills.     What You Need: Deck of cards with the face card removed 2 or more players   What You Do: Tell the players that for the purposes of the game aces= 1. Then, have your child shuffle the deck of cards. Have her deal the entire deck out evenly between both her and her friend. The rules of the game are pretty much like the card game War (both kids flip over a card at the same time), but instead of the player with highest card winning, the first player to say the sum of the two cards aloud wins the two cards. The first child to accumulate all of the cards is the winner.   Over the summer I had an opportunity to play this game with a group of kids going into the third grade, and kids going into the second grade.  They LOVED it!  It was so much fun to see their excitement as they were playing. ...
Benefits of Homeschooling

Benefits of Homeschooling

 Benefits of Homeschooling Have you ever wondered if homeschooling would be a good fit for you and your family? If you are interested in finding out more, you might want to start by asking parents why they made the decision to home school their children. Here are some benefits of homeschooling. Home schooled children receive a well-rounded education that is suited to their own unique needs, and to individual learning styles. Some children learn better when they are allowed to do it their own way. Homeschooling allows parents to develop a curriculum that meets their child’s individual needs. Families that home school tend to be close-knit. They enjoy being with each other day in and day out learning together as a family. If you are finding that your children are spending more time away from you than with you, homeschooling might be a way to bring your family close together again. Because homeschooling doesn’t have the mechanical feel of an outside school, some children enjoy learning more in this more fluid atmosphere. Learning at home, away from the confines of a large classroom, may have advantages for  children who are more artistic .Imagine a school year with less sickness. Your children will not be around other kids all week who are sneezing and coughing and spreading germs. You can monitor hand-washing and good hygiene. Whereas other schools teach children a set curriculum, home school allows for individual study in areas that the students are most interested in. Many home-schoolers have learned that adding the basics of math, reading, and science into their child’s unique interests, makes learning a little...