Great for learning handwriting
The Magnatab is fun to use. Yes, I’m an adult and yes, I can write letters. But, there is just something about those little balls popping up when you trace the letters.
from Defiance, OH
Ok, I really purchased this along with the lowercase and numbers Magnatab for my son with Down syndrome. He also likes watching the little balls make the letter or number when he traces it.
These are great for special needs children or stress relief for mom.
I saw this (Kid-O A to Z Magnatab Magnetic Writing Tablet) and got it thinking it could be a total flop. My four year old hasn’t put it down. There’s something therapeutic about watching each ball pop up… the adults in our house are even found playing with it. My *only* two criticisms are that the pen is not attached with a string (like torture if you’re type A like me) and some of the pen stroke recommendations are ridiculous (e.g. letters G, M, N, W). They actually suggest drawing the vertical lines in the M first and then the middle (???). But that’s it. Otherwise it is a really well constructed, well designed product and I’m thrilled we purchased it. I hope they come out with a lower case version.
Smencils Gourmet Scented Pencils 10 Pack
I bought these because I hate teaching handwriting and I thought they would make the tedious subject a little more fun. The kids have loved smelling them. They often disappear and I find the kids gathered around the case with all the Smencils on the floor smelling them. The erasers work well. A claw pencil grip fits. The lead quality is good. They are strongly scented, so if you have scent allergies they might make you sneeze or give you a slight headache. They are also high maintenance pencils in that you have to keep them in the little cases. Do not put one in a peppermint Smencil case or it will absorb the pepperment smell. They’ve been a fun addition to our homeschool year. (Update:I have had some trouble with the metal part with the eraser slipping off, it does go back on though)
This is our first year using this writing program. We’ve homeschooled many, many years, something around 15 now! Anyway, a huge struggle has been finding a good writing curriculum. I’ve found some that are good in one way, but tedious in another, go too fast or too slow, seem to think that writing is first and foremost at all times (it’s not for us), etc., etc. So often it seems that actually breaking down the process to better, or truly, learn the skills is difficult. It is difficult in general, but also difficult to find one that is interesting in the process. I feel this conquers all fronts! It’s marvelously incremental and precise. I, as teacher, don’t have to guess or try to interpret what the writer’s point is; it’s clear! It’s also concise and last, but not least, it’s even interesting in the process. All of our kids have been reluctant writers, though we do have some that actually write for a living! We love this workbook that is small in time requirement, but develops writing skill so well!
This series (Daily 6-Trait Writing) has offered me a solution for boys that hate writing. It covers fundamental writing skills in a manner that has been manageable for my boys. Four days a week, there is a practice worksheet that requires relatively small amounts of writing. For the fifth day’s assignment, the child is asked to bring together the work done earlier in the week. Much of the writing will have already accomplished, and will simply need to be added to and polished a bit. This series is a good way to develop strong writing skills in the elementary/early middle school years. I expect to be able to smoothly transition into a more advanced writing program when the time comes.
Mother of 4 boys (including 1 special needs child)
Curious Case of the Misplaced Modifier
This book was a pleasant surprise! It was an impulse decision to buy because it was offered at a significant discount. I honestly wondered if I had just wasted my money, but The Curious Case of the Misplaced Modifier is a gem and worth the full price! The book focuses on seven of the weakest areas of most writing: Passive voice, nominalization, vague -ing words, weak verbs, misplaced modifiers, super-long sentences, and wordy writing. Each of the seven chapters begins with a mystery that contains several sentences that use the weak writing that will be focused on for that chapter, then it goes on to explain the problem and how to detect and fix it. There are lots of examples, each showing a sentence with the weakness and then how it could be written better. The Curious Case of the Misplaced Modifier would be great to go with a junior or high school level creative writing class. Matter of fact, that is what my sister-in-law is doing with it. I plan on incorporating the ideas into my 5th grader’s writing. I’d highly recommend it to all homeschooling families who are concerned with their students’ writing or who would like to focus on specific writing issues.
Daily 6-Trait Writing Grade 5
My mother teaches English at the university level and she loves the Daily 6-Trait Writing. She laughed and said the perhaps her college freshmen would benefit from it.
Los Alamos, NM
Learn to Write the Novel Way
I recommend Learn to Write the Novel Way for anyone who has a writer in their family. My daughter would write “stories” in her spare time. When she got into high school and wanted to seriously write a book and didn’t know how to start, I ordered this product. She worked through it and started writing some awesome books. She hopes to get one published soon. I have already recommended Learn to Write the Novel Way to several people.
The greatest weakness in our homeschool is writing. But we love Wordsmith Apprentice. The assignments are fun and interesting enough to keep us going!
Daily 6-Trait Writing Grade 1
I absolutely love the content in Daily 6-Trait Writing Grades 1 and 2. It is easily managed in bite-sized portions. If I wasn’t homeschooling, I might use the second half of the workbook which is filled with transparencies for use with each lesson. For us, that is not useful. My only complaint is that I thought the book would be best if it didn’t have all the student and teacher pages together. If I’m going to use a workbook, I want to be able to keep the pages together and manageable. You cannot really do that in these books as the teacher plans and key are right by the pages your child will use. If you don’t want to tear the pages out of your workbooks, you may be disappointed with Daily 6-Trait Writing Grades 1 and 2.