Sunday, March 21, 2021

How Egg-citing!!

Photo Source

Easter will be here before we know it. I have a horror Easter story to share with my readers! I made a mistake and ordered a glitter Easter egg. I thought it would be cool to put some cash in and hide on Easter and make my teen find. Or put in his basket. Yes, he is 16 but so help me he is getting a basket until he is 18.

 Well, I did not KNOW it was a giant egg like a dinosaur egg. I never pay attention to dimensions. I opened the box and pretty much glitter-bombed myself! All the other candy and stuff was covered in glitter. Glitter was leaking out of the sealed egg bag. I even know how it did that. And it kept doing that when I was trying to clean it with disinfectant wipes.

The "Monster"

 Y'all, the glitter egg from another dimension is now in time out in a corner in my bedroom. It is sitting in the box still until I get a large Ziploc to stick it in, and I have been finding glitter EVERYWHERE 4 days later. Now, this is coming from a lady who has an actual glitter wall in her house. I feel like this is some kind of karma because when I was younger I would put metallic confetti in all my mail correspondence. I no longer know what to do with this egg. Just don't order a glitter egg if you are thinking about it. Especially a giant one.

With eggs on the mind...let's get to sharing some fun Easter ideas (as spotted on the web)!

This is a genius idea that is not only fun but really helps your child practice fine motor skills by scooping. If you are a librarian or teacher, this would be a fun center activity or activity during sensory play time programs. Children "rescue" the eggs by scooping and trying to avoid the tape barriers. You can read all about it at Happy Toddler Playtime!

Sprouting Wild Ones blog has this cool idea of using found nature objects to make egg art. They are so pretty!

Photo Source~Sprouting Wild Ones

Photo Source~Teaching Mama

Want to do some egg science? There are over 15 egg science activities at Teaching Mama!

Ooooh! A magnetic easter egg hunt sounds like so much fun! Now because it involves magnets the mom in me would like to add make sure this is done with adult supervision and that the eggs are taped or glued together firmly shut. Then have fun! Details can be found at Happy Toddler Playtime!

 I love this. When I was in 5th grade our teacher showed us how to take our pencil erasers to use tissue paper squares to mold them to make tree leaves. I have had an odd affinity for tissue paper crafts ever since! This one is too cute. Little chicks in a basket! This idea can be found on Crafty Morning!

I hope you enjoyed this post and stay safe from glitter eggs!

Tina@ TwinkleTeaches

Tuesday, March 16, 2021

9 Ways to Help Your Child Develop Better Study Habits

9 Ways to Help Your Child Develop Better Study Habits

Photo Source: Pexels

School is a big deal for kids. They are setting out to conquer something that can be a huge challenge for many learners. With lessons and homework piling up, developing good study habits is important to help your child succeed. Habits are difficult to establish and even more difficult to adopt, which is why it's so important to start now. Whether it's throwing a baseball, tying laces, or slipping on socks, children naturally imitate the actions around them.

Not only does having good study habits allow your child to concentrate more, but they also may have a lower chance of becoming stressed and anxious. Without good study habits, it can be difficult to make the most of each school day.

What are these methods? How do you help your child develop them? Let’s take a closer look.

The 9 Ways to Help Your Child Develop Better Study Habits: 

1. Regular Scheduling

It is important to stick with a daily routine to keep your child's studying regular. Studies show that the more consistent the study habits are, the easier it is for students to take in the information they are taught. The most productive time for most learners is first thing in the morning when they are fresh. This is when they should be getting their studying done. Don't give them the option to put it off or to cram it all in at the last minute.

Regardless of whether your child is a morning learner or not, laying out a schedule that has a first thing in the morning blocked out for school work will help them stick with it. If they can't get their studying done first thing in the morning, then you should find a time that works best for them.

2. Good Time Management

After laying out the schedule that works best for your child, it is important that they stick with it. Kids can have a hard time sticking to something when there are too many options on what to do, or when something else seems more interesting. Also, when they are starting to get bored with school, they need to push through and finish their studies before they give in to temptation. 

Studying habits, after all, are not easy to change. Being on task seems like a habit and they need to develop. The same applies to their school work. There are so many distractions going on at school that they need to take control and decide what they should do first. Decide whether or not studying is more interesting than playing video games, making friends, doing sports, or hanging out with friends. There will be times that they need to decide which one is more important.

Aside from that, having good study habits also includes having a good workspace. When they are doing their homework, they should do so in a quiet environment. A quiet environment helps them focus on what they are doing, while also allowing them to concentrate better. It keeps them from being distracted by all the things going on around them.

3. Prioritizing Learning Tasks

Sometimes, getting started on their studies can be hard for children. Make it easier by having them focus on completing the most important tasks first. They will feel more motivated to push through and finish the rest of their schoolwork when they could see that they finished something big in a short amount of time. By providing them with a list of to-do items that they can easily check off as they complete them, your children will feel more organized and will feel that they have accomplished something by the end of the day.

Ask your child to look over their task list and find one or two things that they could finish quickly. Have them jump right into it and have them use their earlier energy to push through. If they are not ready to finish something, have them put it off until later during a break or after an enjoyable activity. Then, have them write down the next item on their list that they will have time to finish.

4. Learning From Notes and Homework Assignments

Photo Source: Pexels

Your child needs to take notes while they are at school. These notes will help them to better remember what they learned. Also, if their teacher gives out an assignment, they must get it done right away so they can review their notes to make sure that they understand the material. 

If they leave it to the last minute, there is a higher possibility that they will not get an excellent grade on their assignment. Many times, children try to copy their friend's homework assignments. While this can be a good way for them to learn something new, it also allows them to cheat. Thus, they should learn from their notes and assignments.

5. A study place that’s clear of distractions

Working in a quiet place is important for a child to focus and not be distracted by noise. The best place to sit and complete schoolwork is in your child's bedroom or at the kitchen table. If they need to do homework after school, it is important that they either study in their bedroom or in the car on their way home. 

6. Establishing Good Work Space Habits

After finding a place to study where there are no distractions, your child must make good habits of how to set up their space to work best. A good habit is to have everything they need for their homework assignment on their desk or table. This includes a pencil, a notebook with the assignment written on it, and any materials that they will need to finish as a calculator or textbook.

7. Keeping Distractions in Check

 The biggest distractions are going to be your child's peers. To help lessen the distraction of friends wanting your child's attention, it is best to get them involved in activities that do not require them to be right in the middle of the action. This may mean that they need to have their own space to work where they can listen and still focus.

8. Practicing Good Concentration Skills

Photo Source: Pexels

Good concentration skills mean that your child wants to finish one task before starting on another. When they have done this, it means that the task was completed right the first time because there is nothing else they need to take care of. It also shows that they understood what was being taught in class and were able to apply it rather than slowly learning it through repetition over several days.

9. Don't think of studying as a chore 

The best way to develop your child's study habits is to avoid the goals of studying and focus on what you want your kid to gain from their effort. You can help them understand that learning is an enjoyable activity, not a chore.

If you can get your child to see studying as a long-term solution rather than a short-term fix, then they're more likely to want to learn. Here are few tips on how to it:

  • Get them excited by telling them that you're going to do a big project together.

  • Teaching them the value of an effort. You need not spend hours studying but if you work hard for five minutes, it can pay off later on. 

  • Reward systems and incentives work well to encourage your child to study more. 

  • Helping your child understand how their choices will affect their future and by doing so, they'll be more motivated to put forth the effort needed for success. 

  • Giving them control over their own time has a powerful effect on motivation.

  • When they are engaged in learning they feel good about themselves and therefore will want to continue. 

  • Providing your child with opportunities to succeed so that they begin to build confidence and can get a sense of achievement which will make them feel more motivated to learn. 

  • When your child learns how to study effectively, they'll be more likely to do it on their own without the prompting of parents.

Your child must be able to complete their schoolwork while they are still young. You are there to help them overcome any issues they may have, but if you can't help them with their studies you will be part of the reason why they won't be able to become successful in the future. By setting up a good schedule for your morning that has dedicated time set aside for schoolwork, you will be helping your child stay on track and focused when they have a lot going on in their day. 

This guest post about learning something new was made in collaboration with NY Baby Steps and Twinkle Teaches.


Monday, March 15, 2021

Recycled Cardboard Crafts!

Like most moms and educators, ever since the pandemic started I have been trying to find creative ways to keep kids busy. I came across a fun craft you can make with cardboard boxes. Since many of us are ordering online more, this is a great solution for some creative art fun and a way to recycle those boxes!

You can find cool craft ideas and more at the Quill.Com Blog!


Thursday, March 11, 2021

Learning the 44 Sounds and 26 Letters of English for Beginning Students


Grateful. What are you grateful for? We are living in history-making times.
It is easy to feel stressed and sad. I try to think of one thing every day that I am thankful for. It can be something small, too. I can be grateful that my laptop battery lasted longer than I thought. I can be grateful for the library because I check out books for free. And I can be grateful that my dog greets me at the door each time that I come home.

I found a wonderful post about gratitude, self-care and how fragrance plays into that. There are some great free downloads like gratitude cards and a lunchbox note for your child. Go to FragranceX to read more about gratitude and to download your free printables!

Show yourself some self-love by taking the self-gratitude challenge HERE!


Wednesday, March 10, 2021

Learning Disabilities

I came across this infographic on Facebook and went to
SER stands for Special Education Resources. It looks like they have some free resources for reading and for special education.

I will add another learning disability that has been recently discovered-
Dysnomia is a learning disability that is marked by difficulty in recalling words, names, numbers, etc. from memory. The real problem stems from the fact that the words that they can not remember are essential, as they are needed for oral or written expressive language.


Tuesday, March 9, 2021

Green Scene

Green is on its way!
Spring is coming and so is St. Patrick's Day!

When my son Harrison was little, we would build a leprechaun trap from a shoe box. The leprechaun would visit us and leave chocolate coins along with his tiny shoe prints, tiny boots and teeny-tiny hat with mug. I usually bought the small stuff from the dollar store in the St. Patrick's section.

You can see the handprint rainbow with a pot of gold at the end that Harrison made from home school. And his shamrock.

This was a close-up of our trap. We used a shoe box and lots of creativity!

Here are some fun St. Patrick's Day finds I have made from the web to share with you~

Painting is always messy, but it is so necessary to help develop fine motor skills.
You can use an empty bottle and some paint to stamp shamrocks.

Use a marshmallow and some paint to make shamrocks.

You can do SO much with construction paper strips. 

Like...make a clover!

I love these easy paper strip 3D rainbows!
Source: Crafty Morning

Source: Twitchetts
Click the name for the link, they have 14 easy rainbow crafts!

Have fun creating and keep your eye out for leprechauns!!


Saturday, March 6, 2021

Things I Collect!

Hello Kitty
I remember being about 4 years old. I had a Hello Kitty colored pencil set like this:

  I was at the mall one day with my mom and I took my little pencil pouch with me because it reminded me of a little purse. I also had a tiny red Hello Kitty comb. Welp, while on the escalator, there was a gap on the sides of the steps. I dropped my pouch and comb and sure enough, the escalator ate them! 
I remember feeling so sad.
Thus, began my fear of escalators (and elevators). This lasted for a few years. Just enough to traumatize little Tina. 
That was long story to tell you that I currently collect Hello Kitty stuff. I even had a Hello Kitty cake for my 40th birthday!

Rainbow Brite

 I also had a Rainbow Brite doll as a kid. I believe I had just Rainbow, but I could have had some additional ones. Anyone who knows me IRL knows that I LOVE COLOR!!! And rainbows and unicorns. I try not to be a "too girly" girl, but I am and I love that about myself.
(Yes, my favorite color is PINK!)
I have four colorful shelves with my Rainbow Brite collection on it.

Mexican/Hispanic Barbies

 When I was young, I had a Hispanic Barbie. I took her swimming with me one day, left her floating in the pool, and my german shepard dog, King, retrieved her at some point and chewed on her limbs. I probably cried. But adult me has looked back and see that I probably should have took better care of my toys!!
She was the only Hispanic Barbie at the time. Representation is so important. I was amazed to see a Barbie that looked like me. She had tan skin and beautiful black hair. 
As an adult, I collected her and some others...

This is the latest one I received as a gift.

I also have one that represents my Native American heritage.

Thankfully, now there are many Hispanic and Native American Barbies to collect now.
These are on my wishlist!!

This is the Navajo one that represents my tribe.

You can read more about the history of Hispanic Barbies at Latinitas Magazine.

Old Photos

I have not done this in a while because I have not been antiquing or thrifting since Covid came along. I do buy stuff from Etsy from time to time.
I collect old photos of people who are not related to me. I guess I "adopt" them.
I feel bad that they have been left somewhere, are not lovingly placed in a photo album and often have no names written on the back. I keep
their photos with my own family photos. Now they have a family!

Sailor Moon

In the 90s, my little brother Aaron and I got into watching the Sailor Moon cartoon. I believe it came out on our local Fox channel once a week. At the time, I was in high school and I was working at Target as a cashier. I always looked at the clearance aisles on my break and often found stuff to buy. I saw her and got her.

At the time, she was not well-know. I think I paid $5-7 for her. I still have her!
 I also have some vintage Sailor Moon jewelry. My collection is not big by any means, but I always love that she represents strength and that girls really could do anything. Plus, that show was hilarious.


Someone suggested I put this here lol.
Through the years I have had pets that were spoiled and lived long lives. It is always hard when they go. Like losing a family member. I love my pets!

This was my first dog I got when I bought my home twenty years ago.

This is Chinche with his mini-me, his toy cat.

This is my dog, Chinche.
His name means Bedbug in Spanish.
He is adorable but does not like anyone but us, his family. He is also very funny with his stuffed animal collection, and his quirks. He says "I wuv you, mama."

Sparkly Stuff

Anyone who knows me well knows that I love anything sparkly. I have been compared to a bird in the past! I like jewelry, glitter, and to go rock-hounding. Shiny shoes? Yes. Coat that resembles a garbage bag? Also, yes. I even have a pink glitter wall in my bedroom. And I love it so much!

Before I go for today, I found a FREE resource that has decodable books! Decodable books are great for kids learning to read or for those that need help strengthening their reading skills. You can get them HERE. 

I also wanted to share a cool idea. It is from Kindergarten Smorgasboard/Mr. Greg. Take your student or child on a letter hunt! Write the letter on a piece of paper. Have them use magazines or anything else like cereal boxes, recyclables, etc. And have them cut the letters out, match them and glue them onto the paper.
If you want to use a large paper and you don't have any, you can always use the backside of wrapping paper.

Have fun!