Free Printable Preschool Games, Hands-on Activities, Lesson Plans

Hands-on preschool games and activities help build developmental skills in early childhood. There's no need to spend money on lessons for preschoolers. You can find free printable games and interactive educational materials online. Many preschool printables are also cut and paste crafts that kids can make themselves. Here are free printable alphabet activities, reading and letter games, math worksheets and shapes lessons. Read more

Free Printable Advent Christmas Countdown Coloring Book

Advent is the Christian season of preparation before Christmas. Advent is the equivalent of lent before Easter. Here is a free printable Advent countdown to Christmas book with coloring and Bible activities for each day. Celebrate the nativity, or birth of Jesus with this daily devotional booklet. Dl-TK Bible (click here) has assembled this 24 page Advent nativity booklet. There are pictures and Bible readings about every aspect of the Christmas story from the Bible and the joyful mysteries of the rosary: the annunciation, the visit to Elizabeth, St. Joseph's dream, the messenger angel Gabriel, the shepherds, the birth in a stable, King Herod, the wise men, the guiding star, the flight into Egypt and more. read more

Free Printable Chanukah Games, Puzzles,Activities

Hanukkah or Chanukah, the Jewish Festival of Lights, begins at sundown Dec. 8, 2012. On the Hebrew calendar Hanukkah always falls on the 25th of Kislev on the Hebrew calendar. Here are free printable crafts and activities to celebrate Hanukkah.  read more

Free Printable Native American Indian Totem Pole Designs to Color

Thanksgiving is the time when my literary interests naturally turn to books on Native American Indians. Schools typically teach native American lore in fall. There are several excellent books on American Indians: Sign of the Beaver (Elizabeth George Speare), The Indian in the Cupboard series (Lynne Reid Banks) and A Light in the Forest (Conrad Richter) are three favorites. If you've not read these, do it now! I've got a special connection to Pacific Northwest natives . When I was six my family moved to Haines, Alaska. We lived with a clan of the Tlinget Native American Indians. I was adopted into the tribe. Totem poles are an important part of Native American Indian culture, particularly in the Pacific Northwest Indian tribes like the Tlinget, Chilkat, Kwakiutl, Haida and Tsimshian. I've seen many lovely examples. Here are free Printable Totem Pole Patterns to enjoy.

Free Printable Star Charts, Constellation Maps for Literature Study

Astronomy is one of the most fascinating sciences to share with kids. Stars are only visible at night, but kids can enjoy star-gazing each night mostly anywhere and it costs nothing. Looking for free printable star charts and constellation patterns to teach kids about space science? Here's a galaxy of printables that are free for educators, homeschoolers and families to use. Ancients relied on the stars for every part of their lives. Medieval navigators, physcians and scientists used astrology to guide them in their endeavors. Link these to literature study on astrology, ancient history, medieval studies, Roman mythology and Greek Mythology. Free Night Sky Maps

Free Printable Stone Soup Games, Activities and Lesson Plans

The legend of "Stone Soup" is timeless. It's been retold many times, by such great authors as Marcia Brown, Ann McGovern and Jon J. Muth. Stone Soup is sacred text in preschool and elementary classrooms. If you are teaching a unit on "Stone Soup," here are free printable activities. As an educator and homeschooler, I've used "Stone Soup" over the years.  Read on

Free Printable Doctor Who Coloring Pages, Halloween Masks, Games, Activities

BBC's sci-fi show "Doctor Who" celebrates its 50th birthday in 2013. My youngest daughter discovered Doctor Who in 2005 when she was seven. The Time Lord was the Ninth Doctor, played by Christopher Eccleston. The current Eleventh Doctor is Matt Smith. If you love galaxy hopping in the TARDIS, and battling Cybermen and Daleks here are free printable Doctor Who coloring pages to extend your adventures. You'll find free printable Doctor Who villain masks too, including the infamous Weeping Angels, Smiler, Silence, Doppelganger twins and Peg (a freaky-creepy doll that makes Chucky look like Raggedy Ann in comparison). There are coloring pages from "Torchwood" the Doctor Who companion show and from the Doctor Who books. Read on Free Printable Doctor Who Coloring Pages, Crafts, Games, Activities

Free Online study aids, Homework Help apps

Back to school--three words kids hate and parents (let's admit it) look forward to. Too much unstructured summer vacation gets old. But no parent looks forward to school homework battles. And no kid does either. Here are free online study aids and calendar apps to motivate students. The penny pincher in me loves that these apps cost nothing and save money on school supplies. Students, you're going to love these apps--they're helpful, they make sense and they don't treat you like a little kid.  Read more Read on

Free Native American Lesson Plans, Free Printable Activities from The Indian in the Cupboard Books

If you're an educator and or parent and you're discouraged from battling with kids to read instead of stare at a screen, don't give up. Here's a fantasy genre book list sure to attract, nay delight 3th to 6th grade children, especially boys. I've detailed the books and created a literature discussion guide to use. "The Indian in the Cupboard" series (including also The Secret of the Indian, The Return of the Indian, The Mystery of the Cupboard and The Key to the Indian) blends Native American culture, history, adventure and fantasy.  Use this Native American Literature Lesson Planner--The Indian in the Cupboard unit. Free printable activities included.

Free Printable Rainbow Magic Fairy Crafts

 "Rainbow Magic" is a series of books from the UK, about fairies, created by a collection of authors writing under the pseudonym "Daisy Meadows." Rainbow Magic is illustrated by Georgie Ripper. There are several dozens stories. Here are free printable fairy crafts from Rainbow Magic. Use with lesson plans and to encourage reading. Read more

Dystopian Books, Utopian Literature like "The Hunger Games"

 You read "The Hunger Games","Catching Fire" and "Mockingjay." You saw "The Hunger Games" movie--six times. Until Suzanne Collins writes another book or the "Catching Fire" movie comes out, how will you satisfy your lust for dystopian literature? You'll take this handy list of best futuristic dystopian/utopian books to your local library and get busy reading. Not all of these are kids books, but most could be read by mature 8th graders (barring "A Clockwork Orange"--it has obligatorily graphic descriptions and should not be read by kids) Books like "The Hunger Games"

Free Printable Diary of a Wimpy Kid Activities

 Jeff Kinney is a very popular guy. Author of the wildly popular kids book series Diary of a Wimpy Kid. The series follows Greg Heffley's personal journal of life as a middle school kid. What makes these books so oft-read? The series is a sort of graphic novel. The pictures are simple and poke fun at everyone in Greg Heffley's life, including himself. We can all identify with Greg's harried mother and easily-annoyed father. We can laugh at Greg's tuned-out teenage brother Roderick and his lisping, ever-innocent younger brother Manny. Kids love the all-too-realistic situations Greg finds himself in. Greg is the perfect protagonist because he is not perfect and neither is his family. Happily, Kinney just came out with another book, Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Third Wheel. This book joins DOAWK Cabin Fever, The Last Straw, The Ugly Truth, Dog Days, Roderick Rules and the original. The third Wimpy Kid movie came out on Aug. 3, 2012. Here are free printable activities from the books and movies. Free Diary of a Wimpy Kid Printables 

Free Printable Literature Activities, Reading Games, Writing Prompts

Looking for inspiring back-to-school activities to get kids excited about learning? Or maybe you need to supplement homeschool or classroom curriculum? Look no further. Scholastic is your one-stop source for free printable hands-on lessons and activities. Use these activities during the summer to keep kids reading through vacation.  Free Summer Learning Enrichment Activities

Best books, authors to ignite a passion for reading in tween boys - Yahoo! Shine

As a teacher and homeschool parent, reading for research and pleasure is elemental. Each person in my family, male and female is a passionate bibliophile. I'm surprised when parents say that their kids, especially the boys, don't like to read. I suggest that this is less a distaste for reading and more that they haven't found books that engage them. To remedy that, I've created a list of favorite books and authors, in several genres, geared to boys ages 10-14. Most of these books have some mature content and that's one reason boys love them so much. They feel respected and not talked down to. I recommend reading these stories with kids.  Literature for preteen boys

Help, my child hates to read! Tips to inspire the reluctant reader

Habits, both good and bad, are generational. Children absorb, by osmosis, the vices and virtues of their parents. I'm a reader, as were my parents before me. My husband's family were bibliophiles. Our children grew up reading and being read to. Now in middle school and adulthood, our kids have continued the reading habit. Are you struggling to find ways to spark a love of reading in your kids? Here are some tips and tricks to help. Books for kids who hate to read

Book to Movie Educational films for American History

In education, we are moving toward connection and continuity across the curriculum. We are incorporating literature and response writing into subjects that are normally not literature based classes, such as social studies, math and science. Teaching American history and need some great literature based movies for your class? Here is a timeline of book-to-movie combinations to read and watch with your class. Most of these films are based on books.

Only a few of these are documentaries, because let's face it most documentaries are pretty dull. But I've listed movies that are not too 'Hollyweird' also. I've listed the book title separately if it has a different title. I've also listed the author and leading actor of the movie for reference. I've noted the movie rating and scenes to watch for also. Read more at Literature-Based Movies for an American History Curriculum.

Note: When I wrote this article, I wrongly listed "The Crucible" as being rated R when it is, in fact, rated PG-13. Also, I incorrectly stated that "Patriot" is PG-13 when it's R. My apologies.

For elementary and middle school or special needs high school students, I also recommend the book "Sign of the Beaver." "My America" and "Dear America" are both good history series, too.

Free Printable 'Where the Wild Things Are' Coloring and Activities

Maurice Sendak said of himself that he wasn't a children's author. He just portrayed childhood honestly. Nevertheless, Sendak holds a place as a favorite kids' author and illustrator. He passed away on May 8 and as we bid farewell to author Sendak, let's remember him by his books. The Where the Wild Things Are movie premiered October 16, 2009. Based on Sendak's beloved childrens' book, the movie is 'wildly' popular, too. Need free printable coloring, games, activities and lesson plans from WTWTA? Then you have come to the right place. Read on for links to free printable coloring pages, word search, crossword puzzle, lesson plans and activities. Let's start with the free printable "Where the Wild Things Are"coloring pages, because that's typically what people want most. Read more

Free Printable 'Hunger Games' Book, Movie Activities

It's an understatement to say that "The Hunger Games" book trilogy, by Suzanne Collins, has taken the world by storm. It's lit a fire, pardon the pun! "The Hunger Games" is the first fiction book my non-fiction reader husband has read since Steinbeck's "In Dubious Battle." "The Hunger Games" movie blasted to top spot when it came out in March. The saga continues in "Catching Fire" and "Mockingjay" which don't stay long on book shelves. Planning to teach a unit on "The Hunger Games" books or movie? Here are free printable lesson plans and activities for several different content areas. As for age level, the movie is acceptable for most ages, but the books are a bit graphic. I recommend using "The Hunger Games" series with kids over 12. Read on

Free Printable Preschool Felt Board Stories, Patterns, Templates, Stencils

Felt boards are a teaching tool used in preschool classes to teach lessons and tell stories by illustrating with felt pieces. When I ws a kid, Sunday School teachers used a similar tool called Flannel-Graph. Here are free printable felt board patterns, templates and stencils. These templates can be used to trace and cut out shapes for a felt board. These patterns can also be used to cut shapes from fabric for Halloween costumes, appliques for craft projects, templates to make stencils for painting and even to make patterns for cookie cutters for play dough or sugar cookie dough. Read more at Preschool theme pattern to print

Free Printable Disney Easter Activities

Celebrate the joy of Easter with these free printable Disney Easter activities. Need some free printable greeting cards? Here are links for ten different Disney character Easter cards. Print Winnie the Pooh, Tigger, Eyeore, Rabbit, Roo and all your friends from the Hundred Acre Woods. How about some free printable Looney Tunes Easter cards? Bugs Bunny, Daffy Duck, Wile E. Coyote and other Looney Tunes friends. For Easter letters, why not print some stationery, decorated with Disney's Winnie the Pooh? Write an Easter message to grandma and grandpa, teachers and friends.  Free Looney Tunes printables

Dr. Seuss a Polymath? I Vote "Yes!"

Oh, the places Theodor Seuss Geisel, better known as Dr. Seuss, has gone in 108 years. From the Jungle of Nool to the top of Mt. Crumpet to the best-seller list and On Beyond Zebra, the good doctor is loved in all lands, tongues and, I suspect, genera and species. As the Washington Post reminds us, March 2 is the birthday of this patron saint of fun. I propose that, in honor of Seuss Day we elect Geisel our newest polymath, our next Renaissance Man. After all, says Assessment Psychology, it's been some time since the last, Rabindranath Tragore was added to the list. And the U.S. only has one polymath so far. I won't tell you who--see if you can find out. Take a moment the check the other Renaissance Men. And yes, we're overdue for a Renaissance Woman category.  Who better than Seuss for homo universalis? Read more on Dr. Seuss Should Be Next Renaissance Man

Free Printable Presidents Day Lesson Plans, Activities--Read Around the World with Nobel Prize Laureates

Several American presidents have become Nobel Prize winners. Since President Barack Obama won the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize, Americans have become more focused on the Nobel prizes. Here are lesson plans for reading 'around the world' with Nobel Prize for Literature Laureates. In middle school and especially in high school, use these lessons for world literature, history, world religions and world cultures classes. These lessons are perfect for President's Day. Read more at Read Around the World with Nobel Prize for Literature Laureates

Free Printable Chronicles of Narnia Coloring Pages and Activities

C.S. Lewis wrote the seven Chronicles of Narnia during WWII. I read the books first at about ten years old. They are fascinating stories. I particularly loved the names for characters and the solemnity and grandeur of Cair Paravel and the honor of Aslan. The Chronicles of Narnia's first book to movie The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe was wildly successful and the second Prince Caspian enjoys equal success. If you loved the Narnia books and movies, here are links for coloring pages to continue your Narnia fantasy and adventure. I've included some other coloring pages featuring nicely drawn images of the mythical creatures featured in The Chronicles of Narnia and also in Harry Potter. Read more at: read more

Literature for Chinese New Year, Asian Culture

Best Books for Chinese New Year, Oriental Culture -- Upper Elementary, Middle School High School Students Chinese New Year celebrates the culture of the Orient. This year CNY is the Year of the Dragon and is celebrated on Jan. 23. What better way to explore oriental culture in your classroom than with literature? Here is a collection of childrens' books of Asian and Chinese culture, traditions, history and wisdom for parents, teachers and homeschoolers. Recommended ages are 10 and up. Read on for free printable CNY lesson plans and here's the Chinese New Year list of children's literature books. 

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Freelance writer, Top 100 Yahoo! Voices, Yahoo! News, Shine, Michigan, Detroit), blogger, teacher, mom of 4, happily married 25 years. Graduated GVSU 1986, psychology/general education and special education. continuing ed up to present. Certified MI teacher. Writing Michigan history mystery, children's Gothic fantasy. Areas of expertise: education, relationships, mental health, nutrition, history, world cultures. Passions: faith, Catholic church, sustainable living, interfaith initiatives, living simply that others might simply live. Working on MA in EI education. 

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