Sick week…

Carma over at Winging-it is encouraging fellow relaxed/unschoolers to blog about 7 Snippets from Unschooling.  Our first thought was that we’d love to participate, but Boy has been sick…and WAIT!  We don’t stop learning when someone is home sick.  In fact, it’s actually been a nice change from a heavy schedule of Field Trips and Scout activities.  Obviously, we’d prefer he not have come down with pneumonia ~ but the world does not grind to a halt.  So, true to our blog, we’ve chosen 4 times that the iPad has helped during recovery (plus 4 “unplugged” activities) ~ yes, we’re aware that’s 8.

1.  In the middle of the night, Mom took Boy to the Emergency Room.  Mom grabbed her purse and, of course, our iPads.  It allowed Boy to play games, Message Dad (including a picture he took of his hospital room), and watch a little Netflix in between procedures.  It’s nice to be distracted.  Whenever anyone did a procedure or mentioned something technical, Boy wanted to look it up on the net.   When Boy became too tired to play, Mom read downloaded books to him from her Kindle app.  (We enjoy the books on Ambleside Online & use NLHome’s site to find them all quickly)

2. For the worst days of the pneumonia, Boy spent a lot of time laying around doing very little.  Girl tried to cheer him up & they played quite a bit of Minecraft on their iPads.  (there’s a post in the works detailing Minecraft, but it’s a lot to cover, they keep releasing updates, and…well…Boy has been sick)  The picture above shows them camped out on the sleeper sofa in the living room.

3. Boy finally convinced Girl to use Draw Something.  Another game in our blog queue that helps with reading and hand-eye coordination ~ not to mention to artistic skills and imagination.  Girl may be an emerging reader, but her drawing skills are impressive.

4. Chicktionary was another favorite this week.  It allows Boy to work on his spelling while stretching his vocabulary.  Plus, the chickens make a really fun noise when you select a letter.

Okay now for a little “unplugged” fun…

5. Girl helped Dad rotate the tires on the Green Schoolbus.

6.  Dad tilled the compost pile and found A LOT!  Potatoes growing, worms digging, and a few other bugs that needed to be identified.

7. Sewing.  Girl asked me to repair a few stuffed animal.  Boy was interested in a few pointers in order to repair one of his favorite shirts.  He selected his color, threaded his needle, and did an excellent job.

8. Okay, this is half unplugged, half iPad.  Dominos.  Not only did they create various domino courses, they filmed them using the iPad and e-mailed them to friends who weren’t allowed over during the quarantine.

Check out what other relaxed & unschoolers are doing…

Unschooling Blog Hop | Homeschool Blog Hop

In the beginning…

…well, God took care of that part already.  🙂

3 iPads

We’re a homeschooling family embracing the iPad as part of our adventures.  Dad & Mom have iPhones.  Parents, Boy, & Girl each have an iPad. 

Unfortunately, the information we’ve found on apps has either been from a “here’s a list to keep the kids busy” or a “I just got this for free and it’s awesome!” point of view.   Descriptions don’t contain more than what can be found at the App Store (they’ve usually just a quick copy/paste).  A list doesn’t do us much good (especially if we’re going to be shelling out a hard-earned 99 cents!) to determine whether an app is age/skill appropriate.  A review of an app that’s only been in someone’s hands for a day or two doesn’t answer long-term usefulness and fails to flesh out issues that can frustrate parents & children.

So, here’s the plan: 

  • We’ll only review apps we’ve all used and spent several weeks or months actively using (or couldn’t if that’s an issue).*
  • Dad, Mom, Boy, & Girl will review ~ though each of them may not have something to say for every app.
  • Our reviews are based on our own thoughts and we’ve purchased most of the apps from our own money (or an iTunes giftcard from the grandparents!).  
  • Since beginning the blog, we have been offered apps for free in exchange for reviews.  If this is the case, we clearly state it in the post.
  • We’re not going to rate them ~ because it’s up to YOU to decide what you want from an app. 
  • We’ll share what educational value we’ve found.
  • We *might* even talk about other iPad features as we discover how to use them.  😉
  • If we provide a link it’s not because we make money off it.  It’s genuine hospitality!
  • We encourage your questions, thoughts, suggestions, & reviews.  Keep it nice and respectful please!
*From time to time, creators give their apps or in-app purchases for free on iTunes.  We will post these announcements, but not as reviews ~ it’s just a friendly FYI.