Thursday is here, which seems odd as Mr. O had Monday off. For those not in the US, this past Monday was Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. Schools tend to be closed and employees of the Federal government get it as a holiday. So, to us it feels like Wednesday. Poor R was so confused on Tuesday that he kept saying he was done with schoolwork because his checklist had nothing listed for the day. Had it been Monday it would have been correct, but as it was Tuesday he got directed to what he needed to do.
When thinking about what I could write this week for the Helpful Homeschool Hints meme, I received a few messages about free reading resources for a limited time. I’ll share those first and then mention one that I love.
Funnix is offering its product FREE to homeschoolers this month. You can only download it once for this offer, which is incredibly generous ($249 value.) So, I have been trying to decide which computer should get the download. There’s the old desktop that could decide to croak in the near future (or maybe not), there’s the laptop we inherited from my MIL that has been working with occasional flake-outs, and there’s the school laptop we are leasing through our charter school. Tough choice, but one that will be made by the weekend. Not that my boys are truly struggling in their reading. However, I think D could use a little reinforcement with me by his side.
The second site offering access to homeschoolers for FREE is Mighty Books Jr. Another Catholic homeschooling mama shared about it and D is enjoying the site so far. You need a coupon code (learntoread) to get the subscription for free through the year. These are animated books as well as reinforcement materials (puzzle, games, songs.) Some books are even in Spanish! I am looking forward to using this with D and possibly R to provide more opportunities to read. Some of the books even have online quizzes so I can check on their comprehension without hovering while they read.
Now…the resource I wanted to share about:
This might be something you can access for free through your local library. We were introduced to the site while living in Ohio. (The Stow Munroe Falls library had it on their website.) And, seeing it in the resources for the base library had me get reacquainted with them. They have picture books on up (including ones for middle and high school) depending on what subscription your library has purchased.
You can request a 30 day trial as an educator (instructions here.) Anyone with a generic email or living outside the US has alternate instructions listed on that page. Or, see if your local library has it on their page as a resource. (I won’t list them here, but will say that multiple libraries popped up when I did a Swagbucks search on Tumblebooks.)
Like Mighty Books Jr., these are storybooks come to life. Picture books can be read aloud to your child or they can opt to read off the screen. You can find some ‘language’ books…stories in French, Spanish, Italian, Chinese, or Russian. Some of the books have puzzle or games to complement learning. All in all, it is a neat site we like to visit in moderation.
I am sure there are other online resources for reading you can access (Raz Kids is another one that is subscription based, but they offer short trial periods for educators.) So, why not check out a few and help encourage your little readers (struggling or not.) I even use Tumblebooks on occasion for Little J to have storytime while I work with an older brother.