Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Vidcasts from MIT - 150 Symposium Earth, Air, Ocean and Space: The Future of Exploration

MIT150 Symposium

Earth, Air, Ocean and Space: The Future of Exploration

A friend of mine from MIT posted on Facebook today about these video podcasts and I'm passing on some of the information so that you can view it.
Right now is a Spacevidcast with Astronauts including Buzz Aldrin here's the line up for the first one:

Here's the panel: 
* Buzz Aldrin ScD '63 - Gemini 12, Apollo 11
* Timothy J. (TJ) Creamer SM '92, Soyuz TMA-17, Expedition 22/23 
* Terry J. Hart SM '69 - STS 41-C
* Frederick H. (Rick) Hauck SM '66 - STS-7, STS-51-A, STS-26
* Byron Lichtenberg SM '75, ScD '79 - STS-9, STS-45
* Michael J. Massimino SM '88, ENG '90, ME '90, PhD '92 - STS-109, STS-125. 

Here's the link for watching it live right now http://www.spacevidcast.com/
I'll post the link once they have it up for watching after the live feed later, so be sure to check back. 

The next will be on "The Future of Nuclear Fuel". Timely indeed.....

The following link will take you to the information page and you can also check the "agenda" tab for the future podcasts. 

You might want to also check out MIT's 150th main site for lots more to use for homeschooling: 

And for history check this link: 

Remember to check back for the archived videos later.

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Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Very Hungry Caterpillar read online only in April

The Very Hungry Caterpillar is this month's read aloud (April 2011) at Barnes and Nobles online site.
Read by Eric Carle which is the extra special treat.

Here's the link...enjoy...

Monday, April 11, 2011

Free live science tele-class TODAY given by a real rocket scientist!

We did this last time and got hooked. Usually she gives away free science kits, DVD's and almost always gives you a month of access to the online science lessons for only $1 during the teleclass (normally it costs $37 a month). Once you try the classes out - online - you might just want to keep going with them for awhile. Its one of the things I just started splurging on for homeschooling. Nothing like a real rocket scientist giving your kid science lessons!

Tele-class starts at 3pm Eastern time USA....we'll be there!

Subject: In Case You Forgot,It Happens in 4 Hours
In case you forgot, Aurora’s live hands-on science video tele-class will be starting in just a few hours.
(Great science lesson for this week)
In this free video tele-class she’ll show us how  to make microscopes and telescopes.  Not to mention giving us the scoop on seeing this month’s meteor shower.
Pretty cool.
You can still register at:
I know that last time she did one of these the tele-class was maxxed out (over 3,700 people wanted to participate, but they only had 3000 spots available online). 
I don’t know how close they are to their limit right now, but if you want to be sure to avoid getting shut out, you can still register now with the link above.
See you in a few hours!
P.S. Grab a spot by registering at:

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Sunday, April 10, 2011

Two propellers and a gear-pulley....

We had an interesting packet delivered to us this weekend containing two plastic propellers and a gear-pulley.

Okay, this might seem strange to some but when you are a homeschooling family...well its like the Forrest Gump box of chocolates isn't it? You never know what you're gonna get!
I had previously posted how we had joined up with an online science program, we've just haven't had the time to really begin doing the lessons because of stress and life getting in the way. Seems like someone noticed and wanted to spark up some interest......so we get two propellers and a gear-pulley......

Encouragement received and looks like it time for some science experiments....it seems these items are sometimes hard to find but we need them for three different projects.
The Hovercraft project, the Jigglebot Robotics project (Yeah, I know....I can't wait to try that one either, Jigglebot!) and the Laser Light Show.
I'll be sure to post our experiments so you can see how much fun we have doing them. If you are interested in some of the free science lessons they offer you can read more about them in my previous posting.

So nice to get something in the mail that wasn't a bill!

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Saturday, April 9, 2011

Mini-books for preschool and kindergarten......

I was just wandering around reading a couple of blogs and saw a post on one (Confessions of a Homeschooler) about mini-books for pre-schoolers. I left info in the comments section and thought I would share today, since I haven't posted in weeks, the site that helped us when we suddenly became homeschoolers.

Before our son started kindergarten I had found online DLTK, a wonderful resource site for all things that I needed before he started school and then big time when we pulled him out of kindergarten. I used just about everything on the site and the sister sites, Kidzone ws , Coloring ws and the other sites related to DLTK (all of the links are on their site).
The Red Ranger(TRR) practiced writing his letters, numbers, shapes, etc. Once you expore the sites you'll see why I can't name everything but if you have preschoolers and/or kindergarten children you'll see lots to use.

Since the other blog (one of my go-to blogs by the way!) posted about the mini-books I thought I would share what we did when we used the mini-books off of DLTK'S site.
We started off with the AlphaBuddies books for each letter of the alphabet and The Red Ranger(TRR) loved them.
When you print the books you can either print in color or b&w, we always choose b&w so TRR could also practice his coloring skills. At first he cut the pages and we stapled them together, but we didn't like the unfinished look they had so TRR folded the pages in half, once they were printed out, put all the pages in order, stapled them down the middle and then we made the last page a pocket to hold another mini-mini-book (we'll get to that in a bit). We used each book every month as we did a letter a day with our other resources, each time doing something different and adding other activities as we progressed through phonics. Once he had mastered the reading portion and had finished the coloring we started doing sounds with the books. When we did the letter "A" one time he cut out pictures, used stamps or drew pictures of the beginning sound, which we then pasted (another skill!) into the inside front cover of his "A" book. Next time around it was ending sounds again pasting the pictures or stamping on the inside back cover. For middle sounds we used a separate piece of paper which then fit inside that back pocket we had made.

The back pocket also stored our brainstorming lists of other words around the house that began with the same letter, we would just walk around and he had to find other items to add to his list, many a day he had a list ready in head anyway even though he never knew which letter we would be working on ahead of time. Part of what we did first thing was pick out of a pile a letter and number for each day and then we built the day's learning around each one.
We also included in the pocket the mini-mini-book for all of the consonants which were called Itsy Bitsy Books , these I printed on blue paper (The Alphabuddies books were all on white paper for coloring) just to identify them in a pile of schoolwork to be done.

As for the other mini-books we used just about all of them - holidays and seasons came in very handy. Bible stories and riddles were popular as were the general ones. There is also a very cool option to make your own custom books with your child's name and other information printed out. This way they can have their very own book about themselves. You can even use some of the books for 1st and 2nd graders.

Every now and then when TRR gets a chance he pulls out some of the books just to read through again, he must have enjoyed them because he always tells me about the work 'we' put into them!!
I guess working on the books with mommy was a cherished time......one of the perks of homeschooling!