Y Is for Yo-yo Craft

child adds piece to her lowercase y craft

Your preschoolers will yell “Yippee!” when they see the playful toy in this entertaining ABC Craft! Though a real yo-yo requires some practice (and a few tangled strings), your child will have this letter Y craft mastered in minutes!

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Pirate Picture Books

kids playing in a cardboard pirate ship

Our pirate crew took to the high seas to hunt down the very best pirate picture books they could lay their hands on. Lots of children’s books had to walk the plank in the process, but we found the best of the best. No shark chum fer ya here, me hearties!

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Z Is for Zucchini Craft

child works on her lowercase z craft

While zucchini might not be everyone’s favorite veggie, this might be your preschooler’s favorite ABC Craft! So if you’re ready for the last craft in our lowercase letter series, get out the paper and paste and start growing your letter Z craft.

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The “Pronounce for Spelling” Technique

emu spelling the word probably wrong

A great technique for preventing spelling errors is called “Pronounce for Spelling.”

When you pronounce for spelling, you exaggerate the pronunciation of a word to make it easier to spell. For example, in casual speech we often pronounce the word different as difrent, leaving out the second syllable. When we pronounce for spelling, we carefully enunciate each syllable (dif-fer-ent), making it much easier to spell. Continue reading…


Mercy Watson Chapter Books

Mercy Watson Takes A Ride

Welcome to Deckawoo Drive, home of Mr. and Mrs. Watson and their dear, their darling … Mercy the pig! The Mercy Watson series will take you on one “oink-citing” adventure after another as you follow the wild and wonky escapades of one very special pig.

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The Floss Rule for Spelling

a tooth looking at words with double consonants f, l, and s

Have you ever wondered why some words have a double consonant at the end (such as sniff), while other words do not (such as dog and bat)?

The answer is easy–and we call it The Floss Rule. The Floss Rule is a really simple spelling rule that helps kids remember when to use a double consonant at the end of a word.

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Sail into a Summer of Reading with Flat Ziggy

Summer is a time for fun. It’s a time for swimming, biking, vacations, picnics—and adventure! But summer shouldn’t be a time to stop reading, and Ziggy is here to help make sure your kids remember to add reading to their summer fun list.

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How to Handle Spelling Rule Breakers

a spelling rule breaker in jail

Learning how to spell words that don’t follow the rules can be…well…a bit boring. And we can’t have that! So the All About Spelling program has a fun and motivating way to teach these Rule Breakers.

We throw them in jail, of course!

That’s right, we put these words behind bars. Words like said, who, and once—they don’t follow the spelling rules, so they deserve to be locked in the slammer.

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How to Avoid the “Curse of Knowledge” as You Teach

a scientist suffering from the curse of knowledge

Have you ever noticed that when you know a lot about a subject, it can actually be harder to teach someone else about it?

This is a common problem, and it’s called the curse of knowledge. The curse refers to the idea that the more you know about a subject, the harder it can be to transfer that knowledge to someone who has limited knowledge of the subject.1

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4 Great Ways to Build Listening Comprehension

What Is Listening Comprehension?

Listening comprehension is the precursor to reading comprehension, so it’s an important skill to develop. Listening comprehension isn’t just hearing what is said—it is the ability to understand the words and relate to them in some way.

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“Mashed Potatoes” – A Silly Listening Game

a big bowl of mashed potatoes

Did you know that listening comprehension is directly related to reading comprehension? It’s true! But helping your child build listening comprehension skills doesn’t have to be boring.

Here is a fun—and sort of silly—way to work on listening skills with your children.

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The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place Chapter Books

the incorrigible children open a secret door

Of especially naughty children, it is sometimes said, ‘they must have been raised by wolves’… these rascals actually were!

If you love the thrill of a mystery, the elegance of the English countryside, and the fun of intriguing and quirky characters, you’ll find it all at Ashton Place, an estate with more secrets than a squirrel has whiskers.

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