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Education and Schools

SCIENCE

Sciencebuddies.org is a nonprofit site that helps kids with science projects, including the ability to ask scientists questions and advice, as well as a super-cool questionaire that helps each child find a science project that aligns with their personal interests.

READING

How to Raise a Reader
The joy of sharing books is a gift you can give children from the time they are born. Chanting nursery rhymes, singing songs, and reading stories can comfort and entertain even the youngest child. Here is a list of some of the best with easy-to-do tips developed by members of the Association for Library Service to Children, a division of the American Library Association. This information is also available in Spanish.
http://www.ala.org/alsc/raise_a_reader.html

Between the Lions
This early literacy site, for children ages 4 – 7, is a tie-in for the award-winning television program. Appealing characters, terrific songs and fun games combine to offer great on-line experiences.
http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/lions/

SPANISH

PBS has a new animated website called Noah comprende featuring videos and games to introduce Spanish to children.  I think most kids will find it pretty appealing.  Check it out with your kids at  http://pbskids.org/noah

NUTRITION

Some handy snack and holiday activity and recipe suggestions (and recipes) for healthy and fun classroom celebrations (including birthdays):

http://cspinet.org/new/pdf/healthy_school_celebrations.pdf

Interesting article that challenges common perceptions about homework:

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/09/07/health/views/07mind.html?_r=1&src=me&ref=general

PARENTING

KidsHealth
Child health, illnesses, behavior, nutrition, and fitness
http://kidshealth.org/

National Network for Child Care
A large site offering information from curriculum and programming to nutrition. For teachers and parents.
http://www.nncc.org

NPIN – National Parenting Information Network
Information and materials for parents and caregivers.
http://npin.org

The Parents At Home Page
Information and materials targeted at at-home parents.
http://iquest.com/~jsm/moms/index.html

Common Sense Media: Age-gauged reviews and ratings for movies, television, video games, music CDs, books, and web sites. Common Sense Media shares insight on plot and dialog to helps parents choose what’s best for their kids. http://www.commonsensemedia.org/

VARIOUS EDUCATIONAL

American Library Association’s Great Sites for Kids: Great Web Sites for Kids (GWS) features links to Web sites of interest to children 14 years of age and younger, organized into diverse subject headings from astronomy and space to zoos and aquariums, from games and entertainment to geography and maps. There is also a special section with sites of interest to parents, caregivers and teachers. (www.ala.org/greatsites). Updates for 2009: http://www.ala.org/ala/newspresscenter/news/pressreleases2009/august2009/gws_alsc.cfm

The Busy Teachers’ Web site K-12. This Site is designed to provide teachers with direct source materials, lesson plans / classroom activities with a minimum of site-to-site linking, and to provide an enjoyable and rewarding experience for the teacher who is learning to use the Internet. Teachers may want to direct students toward certain sites as part of their lesson plan. I designed the site with the view in mind that teachers were very busy people. They needed rapid access to quality source materials which were organized in a familiar way. By Carolyn Cole at the Center for Education: Integrating Science, Mathematics and Technology at the Georgia Institute of Technology.
http://www.ceismc.gatech.edu/busyt/

Helping Your Child With Homework Page
Help for the parent struggling with a child’s homework problems.
http://www.kidsource.com/kidsource/content/
homework.html

California’s Untold Stories Gold Rush
Presented by the Oakland Museum of California, this site offers an interactive learning experience for elementary level children through adults to experience and educate themselves about this important period in American History.
http://www.museumca.org/goldrush

Good Night Mr. Snoozleberg
This entertaining, interactive game requires problem-solving skills and a sense of humor. It’s just lots of fun.
http://sarbakan.com/snooz

Library of Congress presents America’s Story from America’s Library
The Library of Congress puts the story back in history through images of primary source documents, prints, photographs, maps, recordings and other materials from the past. Along with the fascinating information about people, places and things of interest to kids of all ages, there are songs to listen to, a Krazy Kat cartoon to watch, a scavenger hunt and other fun things to do.
http://www.americaslibrary.gov

EDUCATION POLICY

EdSource
As an independent, impartial, not-for-profit organization, its sole mission is to clarify complex education issues and to promote thoughtful decisions about public school improvement in California.
http://www.edsource.org


TRANSITION TO MIDDLE SCHOOL

Easing the Transition: The director of the National Association of Elementary School Principals talks about a new effort to help kids succeed in the transition to middle school.
http://www.naesp.org/misc/edweek_article_4-03-02.htm

Transition to Middle School: How Parents Can Help. The National Parent Information Network interviews Trevor Kampfl, a school counselor at Edison Middle School in Champaign, Illinois.
http://npin.org/pnews/2001/pnew901/int901c.html

Middle School Malaise. The switch from elementary to junior high school coincides with several major changes for young adolescents. Most are in the throes of puberty; they’re becoming more self-aware and self-conscious, and their thinking is growing more critical and more complex. At the same time, adolescents are often “in a slump” when it comes to academic motivation and performance. What parents can do to make the transition as easy as possible. From the American Psychological Association.
http://helping.apa.org/family/malaise.html

The Transition to Middle School. ERIC Digest. This Digest presents a brief overview of some of the issues involved in the transition from elementary to middle school and provides suggestions for transition programs and activities. The term “middle level schools” includes all middle grade and junior high school configurations.

http://www.ed.gov/databases/ERIC_Digests/ed422119.html

Middle School Survival Guide, published by the Jefferson County Schools in Kentucky. This is a PDF file and requires Adobe Acrobat to view when downloaded.
http://www.jefferson.k12.ky.us/Pubs/MS_Survival_book.pdf

Caught in the Middle is a 28-minute video project and comprehensive web site that encourages parents to stay involved in their children’s lives during the often-tumultuous middle school years. Middle school presents a span of years when parents often seem to lose touch with their children. Many parents don’t feel the need to be involved as much in their children’s school life at this juncture because they seem so “grown up” when, in fact, just the opposite is true. The middle school years are a critical period of development in an adolescent’s life and, despite the protests of the students, parental guidance is required! Includes tips section and links to other resources, including books and other web sites.
http://www.caughtinthemiddle.org/

Just for Middle School kids. Links to the best web sites for middle school kids, chosen by middle school kids.
http://www.westnet.com/~rickd/Kids.html

BACKPACK SAFETY

Our Children: Who Is Designing for Them?
An article about ergonomics for children, including information about the proper weight for a school backpack. From the National Safety Council.
http://www.nsc.org/resources/factsheets/hl/backpack_safety.aspx

Backpack Safety
A general backpack safety article from KidsHealth for Parents.
http://kidshealth.org/parent/firstaid_safe/travel/backpack.html