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Showing posts with label Website Review. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Website Review. Show all posts

Wednesday, February 02, 2011

Boo Math! NO... Yay Math (sample video)

 If you are like me, ever since your kids finished Algebra, you have been at a loss of how to help them.  You have hired tutors, purchased video based curriculum, and prayed.  Well, that's what I have done anyway. 

My youngest is currently doing Algebra 2 and every now and then she presents me with a problem I don't understand... I don't want to understand it either.  It put us both in very boo-math moods.

But in my quest to find new ways to explain old problems to her, I turned to YouTube and therefore discovered Yay Math.  Ahhh...  It's awesome.

Math videos are recorded in an actual classroom by a full time math teacher.  There is interaction between the teacher and student and important questions are asked and answered. They videos do get kind of silly, but I like that...  If you need dryer material, there's Khan Academy which I also like... but Yay Math is my new favorite for free math help online.

Here's a sample of a Yay math video:


Friday, January 15, 2010

Educational Website Review:

I recently had the opportunity to review, both the free program and the paid Verbalearn Plus program.  I will start by telling  you I like it.   is a website that helps students improve their vocabulary by focusing on words they don't know.  In it's simplest version Verbalearn allows you to insert your vocabulary words into the website, or
it can recommend words for you.  It will then test you on the words using multiple choice sentences.  The program will take words you already know of of the list so you can concentrate on the words you don't know.  Depending upon the level of membership you choose, you can download words on an MP3 player, use the words in crossword puzzles, or review flashcards.

Sure, there are other programs that allow you to play with your words online and in downloads, but Verbalearn is superior as it will help a student study words according to grade level, standardized tests, or ESL needs.

There are three levels of membership available.  The first level is free, and allows students to build word lists and review them in context (fill in the blank multiple choice sentences.) The second level Verbalearn Plus which is only $19.99 (one time fee) In addition to the other features, it includes MP3 studylists, advanced review, video flashcards, crossword puzzles, and the ability to print flashcards.  In the third version, for only $40.00 one time fee, students can also have the chance to earn their money back as they learn their vocabulary words.

I highly recommend this program for homeschoolers and others too.

See the Press Release of the program here:    Vocabulary Site Guarantees Higher SAT, GRE and ACT Test Scores

(I was not paid for this website review)


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Monday, October 19, 2009

When you can't teach it all yourself

As my son and I drove home from church yesterday (we had the rare opportunity to be alone) I got a chance to question him about what math direction he wanted to go in in math and science so I could map out his courses for the next two years. Based on his answers, it became abundantly clear to me that he has reached the end of my level of understanding and that I can't help him with the courses he needs to cover over the next two years. He is currently doing Algebra two in math. I went as far as Trignometry and then Finite Math in college, so I am currently stretching my self when he needs help. Next on his list is Pre-Calculus and Calculus so you can see that he is definitely going to need some math homework help in the form of tutoring.

In the science, physics is next on his list. This is another course I have not touched. My level of experience goes as far as AP Chemistry, much if what I promptly forgot the second I passed the class.

As homeschoolers, we are often confronted with people who ask us how we are going to tech subjects we don't know. They point to situations just like the one I am currently in and accuse us of handicapping our kids. They don't however complain about teachers who are teaching subjects they did not cover in school or parents who are helping them with homework. Fortunately, we all have access to websites that offer online homework help. is one such website that helps students learn math and science subjects from Kindergarten through college. If you want to try them out before you buy, you can consider taking advantage of their free online homework help sessions.

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Friday, September 18, 2009

Website Curriculum Review: Guaranteach

I was recently introduced to a new online math website called It is a math website that provides online math help through the use of video. It is value priced at only $9.95 a month.

I have seen this done by other websites and feel that it is truly the way math should be taught (through video), but gauranteach goes one step further customizes the program by letting students and parents create settings that fit the students learning style.

I have used different video based lessons over the years to homeschool my kids. The reasons we have stopped using one site or another is because they would complain that it was too fast, or too dry, or too silly, or too fast. The customization feature of this site solves that problem. You can adjust the settings for something more or less serious. To be more verbal or less, more real world, or to have more or fewer pictures.

The student will also have a hard time getting bored because there are numerous teachers to help them throuhg the different lessons. There are over 20,000 in the different styles that will work your student through all levels of math from Basic math through Calculus, statistics, and advanced statistics. Yes, there are AP lessons available through this site.

I haven't used this website much as I don't want to bounce my kids around every time I find something new, but if is sounds like something you might want to try. Whether you are a homeschooler or someone looking for Online Tutoring, you will want to check out the free fraction vidoes and free trial.

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Homeschool Resource Review: Course Hero

What do you get when you combine Facebook type networking and College academics? You get Coursehero is a website that was built for students by students as a means to communicate with each other and with professors to increase a students understanding in a subject and to excell.

For example, as a student in a college math course, if you find that you need can't figure out a math homework solution, you can go to the site and pull of answers other students have given instead of waiting for the teacher to review it in the classroom. You can also get a professor to explain it and have other students explain how they came their answer. is also aligned with severat textbooks so you can work with actual examples and solutions that are taught in your textbook. It is also valuable should you miss a class you can go online and ask fellow students for Math Lecture notes that you didn't get in class.

Homeschoolers can also find this site useful as many homeschooled high school students work at the college level. Even if they are not taking an actual class, the ability to communicate regularly with college students to ask questions, and get answers, and even give answers in an online study group is incredibly valuable. This is definately on my list of websites to introduce to my kids as they get closer to college.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Homeschool Resource Review: Knowledge Adventure

I have always said that the best way to teach children is to not even let them know they are learning. Of course this is easier to do with elementary aged kids than middle and high school kids are there is not as much educational software available for older kids as there is for younger kids.

When we first started homeschooling, we took full advantage of software such as Math Blaster, Reading Blaster, and similar titles. These games are as much fun as they are educational, and it sure made me happy when my kids came to me asking if they could "play" their educational games.

These games I mentioned and more are available through a company called Knowledge Adventure who creates many award winning multimedia educational software that is used in both homes and schools.

I haven't used their product much in the last few years since my kids are getting older, but Say it in Spanish looks good for my Christmas list. I wonder if they plan do make one for Mandarin Chinese... my daughter would love it.

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Friday, March 28, 2008

Keeping in Touch?

While my high school career was far from perfect, it had its fun and educational moments. Still, I have maintained little connections since then. In fact, I have not spoken with anyone I went to college with in 10 years. I only have a handful of acquaintances from high school. Fortunately, I do have ways to get in touch with people I have not seen in years.

There are high school reunion sites like and the new that can put me in touch with schools alumni from my previous high schools and colleges. It does not matter if a person goes to school in Eugene Oregon Schools or if a person goes to Arizona schools, this web site helps you keep in tough with old classmates and friends. While is a relatively brand new website, I like the features it ads to the business of keeping in touch. This new online alumni and school reunion community allows blogs, alumni planning, and more. It also gives users the ability to meet new friends. promises to give a run for its money.

I wonder if it is the conveniences of knowing we can get in touch if we need to, is what actually keeps us from staying in touch. As of right now, homeschoolers do not have access to such services that will help they stay in touch with kids they attended homeschool co-op and drama club with. It would help homeschoolers if such sites would add a homeschool category by city so that homeschoolers can locate friends and family from the homeschooling community. Or… perhaps homeschooling kids will keep closer contact with relationships they made especially since they are not forced into classrooms with people their own age and are therefore able to make more natural friendships that will last longer.

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