Category Archives: Games

Alphabet Monster

Alphabet Monster GraphicYou may not know this, but my home is over run by monsters.

I don’t know why so many games I make up seems to have monsters in them, but the kids love them, so why quit? (See Garbage Monster for an example.)

Alphabet Monster is one of our favorite monster games. It’s been around since Pepper (11) was just two years old, and I started playing around with teaching her to read. That means that Alphabet Monster is older than my decision to homeschool–wow! Now I’m playing it with my youngest, Bok Choy (5), and it’s still as fun as ever . . . although it has gone through a few variations through the years.

It’s a great game when you’re just teaching the sounds that go with each letter. I’ve played it with just one kid or with all four kids at the same time. And it’s fabulous for the kid who just can’t seem to sit still.

Here’s how you play: Continue reading

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Going Fishing

We’ve been catching a lot of fish at my house over the last few days . . . and they taste a lot like chocolate!

Bok Choy (5) has been asking to play our fishing math game every day for the last week. It’s easy to pull together, quick to play, and easy to clean up–so it’s also one of MY favorite games to play.

Here’s how you can fish in your house: Continue reading

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Tickets, Please!

So many times, what you CALL an activity determines how FUN the activity is. (Remember Garbage Monster?)

So it is with “ticket math,” another little gem of a game that we pull out from time to time to review facts (mostly math).

Here’s how you play: Continue reading

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Garbage Monster

What do you get when you combine overflowing garbages, a large empty white garbage sack, a black sharpie, and two boys who aren’t thrilled about working with the family in the morning?

Garbage Monster! Continue reading

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Pathway Math

I have always been intrigued by pathways. I love wandering pathways in the woods. I love stone paths in manicured gardens. I love fallen logs across bubbling brooks. Each offers a sense of mystery and excitement–a chance to explore areas unknown.

Sadly, there are no such pathways in my house, where I find myself spending most of time. So I suppose it’s only natural that I’ve found ways to incorporate pathways into our homeschool. I call it “Pathway Math.” Continue reading

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Obstacles to Learning ARE the Goal

Spring can be a beautiful time of year . . .

Unless someone forgets to tell the rain clouds and they don’t ever let the sunshine through. Then spring can be long and wet. Spring can be dark and dreary. Spring can be longer, wetter, and drearier when you have kids running around (and around and around and around!) the house all day. So I’m always on the look out for ways to learn a few facts AND get out a few wiggles.

When I realized that I could accomplish both by setting up an obstacle course in my living room, I nearly jumped off the couch for joy! Continue reading

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Puzzling a Sentence

When Pepper was younger, helping her learn to read was a real challenge. She didn’t take to the idea of letters becoming words at all. And because it was hard, she was easily overwhelmed and had no intrinsic desire to try.

But reading was important to me . . . and I knew that it would be important to her. So I devised all sorts of games to help her enjoy what was, for her, a difficult process.

One of the games that she enjoyed playing was “sentence puzzles.” Here’s how you play: Continue reading

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