The Creative Mama » inspiring art, encouraging women

Cabin Fever and all that good stuff….

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It’s that time of the year… The time when Winter is just draggggggiiiiiiinnnnngggg. Feels like it may never come to an end. This year in Virginia we have had a lovely El Nino year which means crazy amounts of snow. Did I mention Virginia has zero idea what to do with snow? If a snowflake falls I swear this whole town shuts down. For a week! So every weekend for like the last few weeks we have had these freak snowstorms and the schools shut down. I have read post after post from my mom friends on Facebook losing their minds with the kids at home all day for these weeks.

I figured maybe a little post with some sanity links may be in order.

You see homeschooling mom’s never really get a day off. We have to figure out how to survive and mold our work life and home life around our kiddos being home everyday. Without losing our minds. No easy task. Lucky for my family we have learned to make lots of adjustments. The kids of course have their regular school work each day but there are a handful of sites they beg to go on. Sites that keep them learning but they have zero clue they are learning.  With the kids in our area missing so much school right now it is really hard for them to just jump back in when school starts back up. Often this time of year elementary kids are getting ready for testing and keeping facts etc… fresh in the mind is imperative. So why not allow them some time on the computer playing “games” that teach? This will buy you a coffee break, a moment to breath and the kiddos a chance to stay fresh and maybe even improve on some of the areas they are stumped on and could use a “little extra”.

Our absolute hands down favorite site

  • Time 4 Learning – It costs a bit but this site has really caught the kids attention and they are learning basically a whole curriculum. I love how you can take each individual subject up and down a level according to where your child’s needs are.

For spelling we love

  • Spell City – If you register and then scroll down you can chose from Sight Words etc… and they can build spelling tests and games that go with that list. Another big hit around here!
  • I have heard great things about Click N Spell as well. We haven’t personally tried this one though.

Can you ever really have enough math games?

Additional sites

  • I even love Primary games…. I have been known to test my self on the states (out of sheer “can I do this?”)
  • Another good one is Teacher Vision . Seems to have a bit of something for all grade levels.
  • Language Arts games….I love this one too. I admit I am a stickler on the grammar with my kids. Nothing sounds worse than horrid grammar.

Keep in mind that learning doesn’t have to be boring and zero fun. If you can capture a child’s attention then you will see them “getting it”. I must have worked with Haley for over a year on phonics, and sounding words out etc… After a month on Time 4 Learning she finally started reading chapter books on her own. That was HUGE! Amazing how making something fun really helps them get over a learning block! Hope this helps kill a few hours for some of you with the kids.

Come on Spring! Hope everyone is staying warm and sane!

About Tisha


Tisha often refers to herself as the most Un-traditional Traditionalist she knows. A homeschooling, gardening, color-loving, photographer - Tisha currently resides in Virginia with her husband and two children. Her fabulous work can be viewed on her website, Tisha McCuiston Photography.

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  • http://www.tishamccuiston.com tisha

    I am going to have to check out Starfall! I am always looking for fun new sites for them!
    I heard rumor Northern Va kids are STILL out of school today…oh my!

  • http://paulanix.com Paula

    Ditto on starfall.com – it\’s a great site! Used it as a classroom teacher and now use it to teach my own at home (most appropriate for ages 4-7 or so). My kids also love pbskids.org and I love the fact that the games are educational and they can\’t easily leave the site to go somewhere \"unintended\". Oh, and if you think Virginia freaks out, you should see us here in GA!

  • http://www.overcomingbusy.com Marci@OvercomingBusy

    Thanks for the links! We love Spelling City and Cool Math Games. Most of the other sites are new to me. Can’t wait to check them out. My kids think it is such a treat when they earn some computer time. (So do I!!!) They usually don’t even realizing they are learning – but they are!

  • Diana

    Another great link is starfall.com. As a teacher, I tell all my parents about it because it has multiple levels (my kindergarten kids loved to tell their younger sibs about it). Stay warm! As a teacher (in northern VA), I’m itching to go back Monday (we’ve already closed tomorrow).

  • http://www.landesinokinawa.blogspot.com Karen

    Thanks for the links- we def. need them around here!

  • http://www.emmymom2.blogspot.com Emily

    Thanks for the great links!!

  • http://www.machcphotography.com Chelsey

    Great links! And lots of smiles on the LOTS of snow and ‘the whole town’ being shut down in some areas – I’ve lived that before! :) (Of course, not here in the great white North ;) more in places where they are not accustomed to a few flakes ;) )