Thanksgiving Fun!

The holidays are approaching and they’re bringing along tons of family fun, excitement, and To Do lists for packing and chores. With all the hubbub, kids can have trouble settling down — just when parents and teachers have extra holiday preparations on their hands.

Here are three suggestions for ways students can learn and play in the lead-up to Thanksgiving.

Play Word Search

Play Speedy Speller

1)     Learn about North America before the settlers arrived. The European settlers brought farm animals with them, but what animals were here before they arrived? Try our North American Animal Games to find out! Interactive online games make for fun at home, and there’s even a printable activity to keep kids busy for the long car ride to Grandma’s house!

Play Jigsaw Game

2)     Complete the North America Jigsaw. Notice the shapes of the continent of North America and the oceans that surround it as you construct this jigsaw puzzle map.


3)     Play games with Thanksgiving-themed spelling lists. Our sister site, VocabularySpellingCity, has three lists to help students practice Thanksgiving-themed words: Harvest, Thanksgiving, and Thanksgiving Feast. Pick a list, and then choose from our games, quizzes, and writing activities. Fourteen of the games and activities offer printable versions, too! They’re great for car or plane rides or post-feast to give out to the kiddos while the grown-ups take a nap!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Posted under Games for Kids, Grown-Up Notes

This post was written by admin on November 17, 2014

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3 Great Paragraph Writing Tools You May Be Missing

It’s November, and schools and home schools across the United States are focused on writing. Students are writing reports, doing large-scale projects, and readying themselves for standardized tests. For many students these writing tasks cause anxiety, procrastination, and stress. They don’t have to! Here are three great tools that can help your child or students write great paragraphs, the building blocks of successful writing.



The Paragraph Burger is a graphic organizer shaped like a burger. Each section: bun, tomato, lettuce, burger, is labeled to help students remember the sections of a successful paragraph: topic sentence, 3 supporting details, concluding sentence. This fun and friendly format helps students write one sentence at a time, and when they’re finished one paragraph for their project will be complete. Find this and other helpful graphic organizers at


Paragraph Writing Practice

Writing a paragraph can be a great way to practice vocabulary or spelling words. Beginning with a list of words rather than a blank screen may also help students develop creative content. VocabularySpellingCity’s paragraph writing activity helps students practice paragraph writing, vocabulary, and spelling! Students choose a list and type a paragraph using those words. Premium membership allows students or teachers to create custom lists. Once the paragraph is complete, students click the speaker, have it read aloud, and then return to edit their work. Students submit or print their completed paragraphs.


Time4Writing is an online writing course site. With a strong slate of free resources, it’s the site for you if you need to get into the nitty gritty of paragraph writing. Paragraph Writing in the Free Resources section includes five subtopics. Each one includes lessons in video and slide formats, printable activities, and online games. It’s a great place to go to focus on each of the elements of the paragraph as well as on putting together a paragraph that flows well and suits its purpose.

So if you need some writing help, don’t stress! Use these great resources for quick tricks, creative spurs, and even in-depth lessons. They’ll help your students get their paragraphs up to snuff!


Posted under Grown-Up Notes, learning activities

This post was written by admin on November 3, 2014

The Third “R”

Throughout my school career one small problem often tripped me up on math tests. It wasn’t word problems, logic, or even geometry. What was it? Arithmetic! I’d think my way through complex problems and formulas but make a simple arithmetic mistake and get the problem wrong!

Play Flash Cards Plus Game

One way to solve this frustrating problem is practice. Automaticity can be achieved through practice of addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division facts. Math Flash Cards help students at any level practice their arithmetic. Online flash cards correct and give feedback as you go. It only takes a few minutes a day to improve your memory and your speed!

Play Math Man Game

Need a little incentive to practice? Math Man is an arcade-style math practice game that’s a great reward for your hard work.

You can find Flash Cards and Math Man at Before you know it, you’ll have nailed your arithmetic and you’ll be acing all your tests!


Posted under Games for Kids, Grown-Up Notes, learning activities

This post was written by admin on November 1, 2014

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Halloween-y Fun!

I know kids who start planning for Halloween on November 1. Do you? It’s such fun to plan the costume and anticipate the candy, not to mention the excitement of visiting all the neighbors in the dark. One school district I know plans the teacher’s yearly in-service day on November 1. This allows the kids to stay up a little late on Halloween and spares the teachers a class full of students with been-up-too-late-eating-too-much-candy syndrome.

For kids who just can’t get enough of Halloween fun before or after Halloween, has some great online games.

Play Match Three with Body Parts Game

Some kids relish the ghoulish parts of Halloween. For kids who love skulls and bones and body parts, try Match Three Body Parts. Players swap body parts until they have three matches lined up. Then, the parts disappear and the game continues.

Myths About Superheros

Other kids love the idea of being a superhero. Find out whether or not a spidey sense can tingle with Superhero Myths, a short Mythbusters Video that explores whether superpowers really could exist. There’s one truly gigantic real spider in this video, so beware if you’re an aracnophobe!

Play Arachnid Falls      Play Typing of the Ghosts

And for the kids who love the creepy crawlies and scary ghosts? There are two great keyboarding games for you! Arachnid Falls is a typing game that’s just full of our web-building friends. The only way to keep ahead of them is by typing –fast! The Typing of the Ghosts challenges you to enter the creepy castle and type the word on each ghost before it gets to you. When you finish the word, the ghost disappears.

So if your kids can’t get Halloween off their minds, send them to to have fun with Halloween while improving their matching, science, or keyboarding skills!


Posted under Games for Kids