Monday, November 22, 2010

Sharing the Wealth Giveaway - Second Winner and New Contest

Congratulations to Prairiemaid, our randomly* selected winner of the second Sharing the Wealth Giveaway here at Best Family Adventures. Her family wins a three-book set of paperbacks that includes Camping Out, Level 1 (Little Critter First Readers) by Mercer Mayer, Wake Up, Sun! (Step-Into-Reading, Step 2) by David Harrison and Dolphins! (Step into Reading, Step 3)by Sharon Bokoske and Margaret Davidson. Thank you for stopping by, Prairiemaid, and for your comments. We also heard great comments from other homeschoolers as well as parents of emerging readers. If you missed it and you're interested in language arts links, click back over to the giveaway blog entry for loads of online activities for emerging as well as advanced readers. (Even games for playful grownups.)

Turkeys at Lopez Lake, CA courtesy Hey Paul under Creative Commons License
This week, in honor of the grand opening of the holiday season, I'm giving away a copy of Tammy Takahashi's new book, "Zenschooling: Living a Fabulous & Fulfilling Life Without School." With so many festivities, activities and obligations in the coming weeks, who doesn't need a little Zen in her life? I won my copy over at Secular Homeschool and thought I'd share the wealth here.The book offers moral support and words of hope and support for parents who have chosen to educate their children at home as well as those who are considering the leap.

To enter to win this week's drawing, leave a comment below. How do you balance your needs as an adult and the time required to educate your children at home? How do you find time for your children and yourself? What do you do when you find yourself overwhelmed by the stresses of daily life? One winner will be randomly selected from those who leave a comment to this blog post by 8 p.m. Sunday, November 28, 2010.

And if  you're looking for some curriculum ideas to celebrate throughout these winter holidays, here are a few leads. We've found these sites useful over the years for planning, playing and online discovery.

Voyage on the Mayflower - Interactive games, videos and text regarding the voyage and the first year on North America. It follows the traditional Thanksgiving lore.
Fowl Science: Talking Turkey - the Exploratorium's webcast of turkey science.
Thanksgiving Village - lots of printable activities and decorating ideas kids can complete to dress up the holiday
Everyday mysteries- What's the difference between sweet potatoes and yams?
Sleep Turkey - What's in a turkey that induces Grandpa's nap after Thanksgiving dinner?
Thanksgiving Feast - an arcade-style game focused on teaching about nutrition
NYPL Recommended Reading - A Thanksgiving-themed list from the New York Public Library
Writing Prompts - Want the kids to write but can't think of a subject? Here are some grade-specific writing prompts.
Thanksgiving poems
Picture-Perfect Turkey Day - A fill-in-the-blank story generator with a silly Thanksgiving theme
Mr. Turkey & Mr. Duck - a song to the tune of Yankee Doodle for the holiday season. Words, sheet music and mp3 all available free. explore the site for more kid-friendly music by Nancy Stewart.

History Channel Chanukah - Here are the basics of the holiday, with links to key figures, themes, events and other information related to the festival.
Jewish Virtual Library - Further information, including writings and practices
Torah Tots Chanukah - the story simply told, music and games all designed for the youngest set
Chanukah Games - quiz, word search, dreidel spin and more games online

Carol online - A pretty healthy list of traditional Christmas carols, including links to lyrics and sound files.
Christmas Tree Curriculum - This Canadian tree farm has created a six-lesson plan for tree-focused learning.
Christmas Bells, by Longfellow -  Librivox recording of Longfellow's holiday. (Here's a quick look at the 38 other stories related to Christmas available at Librivox.) Peruse Librivox year round for an expansive list of recorded writings in the public domain.
Christmas Carol, by Dickens - a Librivox recording of the classic tale
Christmas Quiz - How much do you know about Christmas history, mythology, lore and music?
History Channel Christmas - the basics of the holiday with links to more info about folks, figures and places
Christmas around the World - Listen to how "Merry Christmas" is spoken around the world. This site also has HOURS of reading and activities related to Christmas.
Online Advent Calendar - Updated daily with links to Christmas-season related facts and activities
Chudleigh's Matching game - an electronic version of concentration with a Christmas theme
The History of Gingerbread - a lengthy article with some links
Gingerbread & Smut - did you know gingerbread was actually created to mask a wheat disease known as smut?
And more gingerbread science

Leavenworth Nutcracker Museum - of particular interest to the young ballerina and others interested in the classical Nutcracker Ballet.
Crafts and Gifts - One of many online resources for crafting and gift-making ideas with a kid focus
Christmas-themed Language Arts Activities - More ideas for the writers in your life
Christmas card online - Click about this village scene to give it a warm holiday feel.

Folktales, Fairytales, Myths & Legends - including Thanksgiving, Christmas, Chanukah, Kwanzaa and New Years
Learning through the days of the year - Another November calendar
Homefires' November Learning Calendar - day by day historical moments with links to DVDs or stories. Perhaps a little late this year, but maybe next year?
Web holidays - dates and info about a variety of holidays and pseudo holidays

1 comment:

  1. Oh, my! Thanks for compiling all these. I plan on taking a leisurely look later!


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