Archives for June 2013

Tot School Gathering Place ~ Week 25

Gather together here, gather ideas from other blogs, share your own ideas on your own blog. Browse around at the other posts linked up, leave a few comments if you have time, and be sure to check back to see if your blog was featured!


Head over to Learners in Bloom to see how she keeps this 21 month old cutie entertained!

Learners in Bloom


Outdoor dish washing station from The Mama Years ~ So fun!

The Mama Years


Fun V is for Volcano week from Natural Beach Living!

Natural Beach Living


Were you featured?

You are welcome to a button but you certainly don’t have to use it! Totally optional!

Tot School Feature

<center><a href="" target="_blank"><img alt="I was featured for Tot School!" src=""/ ></a></center>

Please read this carefully before linking up! This may no longer be the linky for you, so please glance through this list to be sure you want to stick around and link up with us!
By linking up you agree to the following:
  1. A photo and a link to your post may appear in a future Tot School post. You give me permission to choose a photo from the post you link up, and give me permission to use your ideas in my post. I will link back to you, mention your blog, and give you full credit for any ideas choose to share form your post. If you don’t want me sharing photos, your blog, or ideas, please don’t link up.
  2. Your post is a post written specifically for Tot School and not just an idea for tots. It features your own child{ren} in action. This is a community for moms to come together and share their journey with Tot School virtually.
  3. Provide a link back to Tot School within your blog post {you can use this link: or a direct link to the weekly post you link up to} if you link up. If you do not link back to Tot School, your link will be deleted. Link backs on the sidebar, or in a massive “I link up here” page don’t count ~ they are too difficult for me to find and the first thing I look for when verifying links is the link back.
  4. Link up your exact Tot School post {not your blog homepage} if you are unsure how to do that read this!
    Each week I will feature photo{s} and ideas from blogs who link up. Sometimes it may be one simple idea, sometimes it may be a collection based around a concept .

Do you have your FREE

Where to Begin with Tot School eBook?


See the Tot School webpage here!

New to linking up here? Read this first! Basics: write a specific post about what you did with your tot, link up the permalink from your post, link back to Tot School within that post, put your tot’s age in months in ( ) like this: (43 months).

Raising Rock Stars Preschool ~ Letter Jj – Jack and the Beanstalk

Home Preschool Letter J

Raising Rock Stars Preschool Our letter this week ~ Jj our verse: Jj See RRSP Letter Jj with Krash here!   Not familiar with RRSP? Read the intro post here!   {disclosure: there are affiliate links in this post} She does about 2 RRSP activities per day plus the PowerPoint on most days. Cutting her verse…Home Preschool Letter Jj -4046 She loves to tape it together…Home Preschool Letter Jj -4049   She insisted on Ziggy {from All About Reading} helping her color…Home Preschool Letter Jj -4019 The entire printable unit {everything you see pictured above} is available for FREE! You can download the entire letter Ii unit for FREE here.   Want the RRSP Bundle?  

  ~ More Letter Jj Work ~   See how we organize our weekly home preschool activities…   Preschool-Work-Trays62   She continues to LOVE her ABC Basket!  The moment she saw this one she asked to sit right down and investigate!Home Preschool Letter Jj -3938   She did every puzzle and activity all at once!Home Preschool Letter Jj -3956   Our ABC Find It activities continue to be a favorite. We are using the printables 3 different ways, the first day I let her do a sensory bin search to find all of the little cards and match them to the poster.   Home Preschool Letter Jj -3990 Home Preschool Letter Jj -3992   She loves using the ABC Apps we have during the week.  I love that my cards help me remember to use them!   Home Preschool Letter Jj -4001 Home Preschool Letter Jj -4020 Home Preschool Letter Jj -4060 Porcupine painting {got them from Oriental Trading} the jeans and jam…Home Preschool Letter Jj -4599   Home Preschool Letter Jj -4601   She came up with the idea to drop our mini magnets {from Target} onto the letter printable and yell out the letters she landed on!Home Preschool Letter Jj -4615 Animal ABC lowercase j… Home Preschool Letter Jj -4031 Home Preschool Letter Jj -4051   Q Tip Painting Letter JjQ Tip Painting ABC Printables -3970

We are in the second half of All About Reading Pre Level 1, which goes through the lowercase letters. She enjoyed the dot to dot… Home Preschool Letter Jj -4015 Fun with tape again!Home Preschool Letter Jj -4017  

  Jack and the Beanstalk Preschool

We had tons of fun exploring the Jack and the Beanstalk story too! We mainly used my printables, but also enjoyed a few form other sites which I will link below.

Jack and the Beanstalk Free Printables

We only had one paper book copy of the story and she read it SO much by herself, she loved it!Home Preschool Letter Jj -4011


We used the story printables from Pre K Pages and they were a BIG hit!Home Preschool Letter Jj -4013


Home Preschool Letter Jj -4627


I made her a notebook of all of the printables that could be used with a dry erase marker, here she was finding the difference…Home Preschool Letter Jj -3997


Matching 3-part cards…Home Preschool Letter Jj -4005


She LOVED this fun project from Fantastic Fun & Learning, you can visit her blog for the instructions!


Home Preschool Letter Jj -4034 Home Preschool Letter Jj -4038

Home Preschool Letter Jj -4040   Coloring Jack…Home Preschool Letter Jj -4045 Home Preschool Letter Jj -4693   Cutting and gluing…Home Preschool Letter Jj -4066   The Q Tip painting printables were a BIG favorite!Home Preschool Letter Jj -4026

Home Preschool Letter Jj -4594 Home Preschool Letter Jj -4596


Roll and Graph…Home Preschool Letter Jj -4607


Home Preschool Letter Jj -4612

Ordering 1-10 puzzle…Home Preschool Letter Jj -4626   Most of her Jack work when we were finished!Home Preschool Letter Jj -5102

Her work all hung up at the end of the week… Home Preschool Letter Jj -5106 Find all letter I activities on my J is for… Pinterest board, or on my general ABC Ideas board! Find more theme printable packs to go along with Letter J here!

image Theme-Printables-F-through-J522 image212



More Preschool Fun!

Not everything we do revolves around our letter of the week, I just often forget to take pictures of the rest! She loves our Family Counters and plays with them often…Home Preschool Letter Jj -3961   Another favorite is Straws and Connectors.  Each of her brothers got a set for their birthdays which means WIN for her!  She spends so much time creating with these!Home Preschool Letter Jj -4695 Home Preschool Letter Jj -4698


Learning Tools We Used…


Visit Preschool Corner to see more home preschool families!

Apple App Freebies

If you are already subscribed to my email newsletter, you can ignore this post, since you already got an email about it!

Not subscribed to my email newsletter? Subscribe here so you don’t miss out, the newsletter often has information that isn’t on the blog itself or in the blog rss email {the one that emails you my blog posts}. Confused?  Read this for more info on subscribing options.


Apple App Freebies Emails

* if you don’t have an i device yet but plan to get one, you can create an iTunes account now and begin stocking up the freebies.

I am introducing a new email only subscription for my readers who are interested in grabbing the temporarily reduced Apple Apps I normally share on my Facebook page. Facebook doesn’t cooperate nicely and many of you never see those posts, or miss the time frame to grab the freebies. In order to solve this issue, I am setting up an email subscription so you can subscribe to receive these notices via email!

An email may have a list, or may be just for one app, I created the format of the newsletter so it is easy for me to insert links quickly and send it out so you have a better chance of grabbing it while it is free. Most freebies are for 24 hours, some for a few weeks, and some are for just a few hours!

Use this link to sign up to receive the Apple App Freebie Emails

In the newsletter you will see 3 categories to help you find what you are looking for…

We Own

Trying these

not free

Note ~ I only share Apple apps, not Android! Why? It’s simple…I only own iPads and iPhones. We chose to go the Apple route when we bought them because the educational app market for Apple is way better. Hopefully Android will catch up, but I want you Android users to know, it’s not personal ~ I just don’t have an Android device in my home!

Notes about our iPads…

We own iPad 2s and got them refurbished {cheaper} straight from Apple and have had no trouble at all. We have 16G but I wish they were 64G, we have to delete things a lot to add all of our books and things. I barely spend any $ at all on apps and our account is FILLED with quality educational apps.

{disclaimer: affiliate links below}

We have the Trident Kraken case on our kids’ iPad and my husband has the Otterbox Defender on his. BOTH are fabulous if you have kids. The Otterbox has a removable stand and front cover, the Tridents do not. Both keep the device very safely protected.

Our iPad 2 Case for Kids

Other Helpful Posts…

 Alphabet Apps Free-Apps 

Apple App Freebies

Celebrating Independence Day

4th of July Homeschool Fun

The 4th of July is approaching and many of us will be teaching our children about the history of America.  In case you are a new blog reader, I wanted to remind you of a  few resources I have on my site and others I have used in the past to explore this time of year with my own kids!

4th of July Calendar Connections CardsIndependence Day Calendar Connections


Let’s Explore Independence Day eBook {goes with CC cards shown above, $1 in Teacher’s Notebook Shop}Independence Day eBook Cover


Independence Day Printables4th of july printables


4th of July Sensory BinIMG_7228_thumb[1]


Red, White, & Blue Tot SchoolIMG_7919_thumb[1]


Independence Day Pinterest Boardimage

Please leave links to your 4th of July printables or blog posts in the comment section to share with others!

Montessori at Home! Giveaway & Discount

Montessori at Home!

{disclaimer ~ this is a giveaway post, I was given a copy of the eBook to review and there are affiliate links in this post.}

If you have read my blog for awhile you know my passion for Montessori and have probably read posts from John Bowman, who writes the Montessori Minute for us every couple of months. Years ago he contacted me about his first edition of Montessori at Home! and we have been working together ever since.  John has recently released the 3rd edition of his already amazing book {if you already have an earlier edition, you get the update for free}.

I can’t believe he was able to make it even better, it was already amazing. If you are interested in home preschool at all, I HIGHLY recommend this resource.  There isn’t anything else out there like this, I truly wish I would have had it 7 years ago when I began! Even if you don’t want to implement a full Montessori experience {which we do not} this book is the best resource I have seen to pull everything in one place. I honestly can’t say enough about how wonderful it is. It is filled with pictures, ideas, links, and clear concise explanations.

If you are like me, you LOVE photographs in a book. The thing I love the most about this book is the outstanding use of examples through photographs.  Here are 4 of my favorite pages in the book, both filled with photos, and all of the blue writing you see links to awesome resources on the web!

Montessori at Home Sample Pages

Need more details? 

See many sample pages offered by John here.  He is so generous to offer this sample pack, it is truly amazing. Definitely gives you a great taste of what the book is! Keep in mind these pages are directly from the 512 page eBook, so it’s just a small portion. Be sure to notice the cute girl on page 10!

This is written by John to share more of what is included in this amazing resource…

The Montessori At Home! Third Edition eBook

The Third Edition of Montessori At Home! is a unique resource – a 512 page pdf eBook with a totally updated, complete Montessori program parents can do at home with their 3-6 year old children.

Highlights include:

  • A Quick Start Guide and recommendations for first activities so parents can start the same day they download the book
  • Clear, well organized early chapters to prepare parents to be successful, including: Maria Montessori & Early Childhood Education, Using Montessori Principles in Parenting, A Parent’s Guide to Using Learning Materials at Home.
  • Clear, easy to follow descriptions of over 300 activities and materials in the areas of Practical Life, Sensorial, Art & Music, Digital Life, Science, Mathematics, Reading, and Writing. You will not find such a complete collection of early learning activities anywhere else.
  •  Links to sites, blogs, and videos are found everywhere throughout the eBook to expand on the information in the book, help parents clearly see what to do, and give parents new ideas. Many videos are for children to watch as educational activities in themselves.
  • Recommendations are given throughout the eBook for over 225 digital tablet apps that reinforce and expand on the hands-on materials. The Digital Life chapter and app recommendations give parents the most clear, up to date guide available on safely using digital devices with preschoolers in developmentally appropriate ways.
  •  A greatly expanded Science chapter, with activities about Plants, Animals, the Human Body, Geography, Physical Science, Outer Space, and the Earth.
  • Clear, easy to follow sequences for teaching Math, Reading, and Writing, from a child’s first experiences through mastering advanced skills.
  •  76 pages of free printables to use with many activities in the book.
  • A copy of the eBook, Mom Bloggers Talk Montessori: Favorite Activities and Ideas, comes with every download. This great book will take you inside the homes of Moms who are doing Montessori at home. See what they are doing, learn from their tips, get activity ideas, and join the large and growing community of Moms working with their children at home.

Montessori At Home! is a pdf eBook, easily read on all computers, and especially optimized for viewing on the iPad. The book is full of high quality photographs, illustrations, quotes, clear explanations, and practical information on every page.

Montessori early learning materials help young children develop excellent brain architecture, a positive, confident self-image, a true love of learning, and early skills in math and reading that provide a great head start for school. Children love doing Montessori activities, because these materials provide real food for brain development.


Great News!

We are giving away a copy of the new Montessori at Home! eBook and the Montessori Print Shop Printable Bundle! The print bundle is from another company we love and compliments many of the activities in the eBook, the bundle sells for $24.95, learn more here.

Cover image  MAH-Bundle-Layout-700


AND ~ John is offering my readers a $2 discount on the eBook, making it only 8.95 ~ for 512 pages!  Amazing! You have to use this checkout page to get the book for $2 off, so be sure to use this link if you want to purchase! There’s no code, just a buy now button on that page that gives you the lower price!

Enter to win below using the Rafflecopter form {if you don’t see it, be sure you are reading on the actual blog and not via email or RSS}.

Giveaway is open worldwide and ends 7/2/13

a Rafflecopter giveaway