I just ran into a website called Bedtime Math with absolutely fun daily ideas to incorporate a fun math puzzle into your evening. Each puzzle has options for various age levels so that you can work on the idea with all your kids at once. The ideas look really fun. Yesterday’s puzzle was called the Mad Dog Dash and asked questions about the Iditarod dog sledding race. You can also sign up for emails to be sent to you with the puzzles daily, free. We will give it a go at our house starting tonight! The link is: http://bedtimemath.org/Read More →

A lot of focus is placed on science eduction today, however most of it is really just scientific method practice. Speaking from personal experience, the scientific method is an incredibly simple process with definable steps that is not necessary for children to practice. The result of forcing the incorrect concept that the most important part of science is the scientific process creates children who are bored out of their minds and develop a lifelong distaste for the subject. The fundamental key to enjoying science is gaining practice with the creative spark part of science. That is the fundamental piece that makes a scientist truly great.Read More →

Yeah! A total eclipse of the sun will happen today. We are celebrating in our house and will be watching the eclipse live! The bad news is that it is only visible in the southern hemisphere near Australia. The good news is a group called SLOOH. They own space cameras that you can control yourself and take pictures of space, for a fee. As part of the service you can store your pictures online and also use the image filtering tools the professionals use to create those wonderful pictures of celestial bodies that you find in books. Participating in the program with your child opensRead More →

Sometimes getting out yet another piece of binder paper to write a page summarizing a history lesson is not nearly as valuable to your child than to use the visual display of information to not only summarize what they learned but discover connections between multiple lessons that create the key to remembering and learning. The master of displaying visual information is Edward Tufte, a man with an incredible sense for how to communicate information and ideas. He has written many wonderful books and gives talks around the country at universities and museums. Here is a link to Edward Tufte (www.edwardtufte.com) presenting the display of informationRead More →

Marcus Du Sautoy has done more for my kids’ understanding and love for math (or maths as he puts it in England) than I thought possible. Throughout my educational career, I spent many, many hours studying math. I thought that I really understood all of it. But then I sat down with my kids to listen to a math podcast with Mr. Du Sautoy. Wow. He is able to explain the reasons behind all of mathematics, even the really advanced stuff in a way that makes the concept “sticky” for even the little ones. Beyond his BBC podcasts, Mr. Du Sautoy has a series calledRead More →

Taking your kids to a renaissance fair can be a great way to spend the day – especially if they have spent time learning about Renaissance Europe and Tutor England. Only downside is if your kids are like mine, they may spend time pointing out the historical inconsistencies at the fair. Either way, they will have a really fun day and feel as if they have been transported back in time. The look of awe on their face as two knights come to blows in a joust is well worth the entrance fee.Read More →

It is so important for kids to realize that math is not a dreary, dull subject. There are a few mathematicians who stand out as truly loving mathematics and providing engaging explanations that make math understandable and fun for all ages. Vi Hart is one such mathematician. A young woman with a wonderful sense of humor and a wickedly smart sense of math, Vi graduated from Harvard and joined the Khan Academy. She also has a tremendous volume of youtube videos and additional information on her web site at http://vihart.com/everything/ Using Vi Hart’s material is a great activity to enhance math lessons on a Friday afternoon,Read More →

Last week I took the kids to an annual Farm Days event for homeschoolers at the Hidden Villa Farm in the SF Bay Area. This is a regular activity for us and even though the kids are getting older, they still love spending the day in the fields picking food, preparing lunch, and visiting with the animals. This year they even learned to spin wool and now they cannot wait for our poodle to grow out his hair so they can try to create a poodle-wool sweater. On a serious note, learning about farm life and how farmers lived in the 19th century in theRead More →

This site is dedicated to sharing our adventure through curriculum I tweak or develop myself. These include math and history enrichment, home classroom setup, curriculum organization, and motivational strategies, but there are many others in store. I also will post posters and diagrams and tools that the Doodle Bugs have enjoyed. The Bugs and I hope that you find lots of useful materials for your own adventure.Read More →