Resources for Teaching

Teachers and Parents,

Looking for educational material, but you don’t have an educational store near your vicinity? Allow me to share with you the manufacturers who market all those exciting trimmers, bulletin board sets, and hands on learning materials.

Rock n Learn                                                                                                                                                       Rock n Learn specializes in DVD’s and CD’s that contain concepts which have been put to music. The concepts range from preschool through fourth grade, covering many subjects such as Alphabet, Languages, Reading , and Math. You can check out their materials online at rocknlearn.com.

Top Notch Teacher                                                                                                                                                 Top Notch Teacher carries all those classroom essentials. Their materials range from Library Pockets, File Folders, Passes, Sentence Strips, Name Plates, Large Chart Tablets, and Inspirational Posters (Including Spiritual Bible Based Posters) to name a few items.  You can check out their materials online at k12schoolsupplies.net.

Remedia                                                                                                                                                                            Remedia carries books and supplemental materials to teach and assist children

Comparing Text Books

When comparing Text Books there are several elements to review before making your final selection. First of all, you must decide whether you are wanting material to supplement, allowing more practice in a particular area, such as addition, multiplication, writing, reading etc. Otherwise you can choose material which will be more inclusive of what is being taught in a particular subject such as math, english (covering both reading, writing, and spelling), etc. Once you know which type of material you are desiring, the next step is to pick the most effective publisher for your child.

Instructions:                                                            Does the book give step by step instructions, or does it say something such as, “Fill in the blank with the correct answer” leaving the child to try and decipher what is being expected of them. Also make sure you flip through the book, as the instructions should not only be clearly explained at the beginning of the book, but throughout as well. The more the procedures are clearly defined, the better they will remain in the memory, and eventually as is the goal, move from the short term memory to the long term memory. For information on how we obtain and store memory visit this website: Faculty Bucks Education . Also the more clearly the instructions are defined, the more likely a child will be able to sit down and accomplish the task with minimal assistance. Otherwise the child is going to require that a parental figure be available to explain each new procedure.

Examples:                                                                 Not only should the material be clearly explained, but the examples should clearly be shown in a step by step process, that the child can examine the example and be able to figure out what is going on. In math each number should be shown in a carrying problem. If the child is expected to do it, then the book should show it. Sixty-five percent of learners are visual learners. Therefore it’s essential not only that things are clearly explained, but also clearly shown. The more senses which are used in learning, the better the material will be remembered and understood.

Appearance:                                                           This is all the more important if it’s an elementary child, especially about fourth grade and younger. However it also depends on each child. Those who have autism can be overwhelmed by too much  color, and pictures, and it may be more of a distraction than a help. The same goes for children who have variations of color blindness. In this instance it’s better to have stark contrast between black and white, with a good amount of empty space, making clear the order of sequence . If your child doesn’t fit in those categories, then it’s key that the page look appealing and inviting.

The goal is not only to teach the child, but that they enjoy learning. There should be a decent amount of pictures, and be colorful. If the book contains puzzles to solve using the material being taught, all the better. If the book doesn’t contain a decent amount of color, think about purchasing some stickers as a reward for problems well done. The more a child enjoys learning at an early age, the less likely they will become burned out as they get older. Play off their excitement. Have the child who loves playing school, teach you the parent what they have learned. Not only are you reinforcing what they are learning, but causing them to understand the step by step process of the material by teaching it to you. Play along and ask questions. One of the best ways to learn something is to teach it to someone else.

Fidgets

 Fidgets are a wonderful self directed tool that improves attention by stimulating focus through creating an outlet for anxieties. Also fidgets stimulate mental activity by encouraging both sides of the brain to work together, through the movement of both hands. For a more thorough explanation on how fidgets work visit: http://www.friendshipcircle.org/blog/2011/10/31/fidgets-what-are-they-and-how-can-they-help/

Wooden Fidget Puzzle made by ToysmithThis is an excellent item, because it’s quite, making it perfect for in the classroom.  Check your local teacher supply store for availability.

 Aaron’s Crazy Puttywww.puttyworld.com This item is similar to Silly Putty, however it’s oil based, which keeps it from drying out, and each package has it’s own properties: glow in the dark, magnetic, hyper color…etc.It’s made by Americans with Disabilities, and has become extremely popular in the last few  years. I would not recommend using it over carpet, as the putty is nearly impossible to remove once embedded. This however is another great fidget that doesn’t produce much noise. Check with your students teacher before purchasing, as teachers seem to be divided on whether they allow this particular item to be permitted in their classroom. Aaron’s Putty has been carried by Learning Palace, and Craft Warehouse.

Tangleswww.tanglecreations.comTangles are a great fidget. There is no noise involved, and the pieces stay together really well. Once in a while they may snap apart, but they easily snap back together.Highly recommend.

Twiddlewww.twiddlenow.comTwiddles are another fidget, which come in many colors and glow in the dark. Twiddles are made up of many interlocking facets, which allow this fidget to be manipulated in many different forms. They were also created to snap apart to aide with anger management. Since the pieces can be removed, it’s possible to turn one twiddle into two, which can be helpful when purchasing for multiple people to  use. I highly recommend reading testimonials concerning this product.

 Geo TwisterCreated by DaMert Company-Produced by Toysmith- I believe this particular fidget would be excellent for kids with dyslexia, as most children with dyslexia see in three dimensional forms. The Geo Twister is made up of geometrical shapes, which are all connected, allowing the child to manipulate the fidget into different three dimensional shapes.

Iso FlexAn Iso Flex is a stress ball filled with micro beads, creating more of a sensory feel. Not only is an Iso Flex useful as a fidget, but it’s also effective in strengthening hand muscles, which can be beneficial in improving penmanship.