Showing posts with label Education. Show all posts

Raddish Kids Review + Coupon Code

 Raddish Kids is a subscription box service that sends monthly kits to your home to help your child learn basic food prep and cooking skills in the kitchen. Raddish Kids sent us a box for review, but all thoughts and opinions are my own. 


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With Kyle doing homeschool this year, I knew that it was going to be my responsibility to to provide any fun activities that he might participate in outside of our typical school books. Coming up with creative things on my own is not necessarily my strong suit, so awesome subscription boxes like Raddish Kids that deliver the fun and education right to my door are something I'll support 100%. 


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What is Raddish Kids?

Raddish Kids is a monthly subscription service that delivers a kit straight to your home for your child/children to learn beginner cooking skills, and other skills such as reading recipes, shopping for ingredients, and so much more. 

Each box comes with a cooking utensil for your child to add to their personal collection, a collectible badge that corresponds with each monthly theme, three recipes, and activities that build off of the monthly themes. Our kit that we were sent was "American Diner" themed and came with little conversation starter cards to use at the dinner table, a notepad to take orders with, and a whisk!

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Who is Raddish Kids Good for?

Raddish Kids is great for children ages 4-14. Younger kids can learn to cook and help along side their parents while older kids can take the lead and be more hands on. Kyle is 8-years-old so I let him take the lead on cutting all the vegetables, cracking all the eggs, and stirring things together, and basically everything that didn't involve him using the stove (building up to that one!) 

Raddish Kids is also great for children who need more help working on fine motor skills. While the kit we got was meant for Kyle, after using and preparing one of the recipes I can see how this would be really beneficial for children with disabilities like Kinsley. She could totally work alongside me in the kitchen whisking eggs, pouring ingredients, and I could even help her hand over hand to cut and chop ingredients. The entire process would be so great to help her work on her hand strength and other occupational therapy goals. 

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How Much Does Raddish Kids Cost + Coupon Code!

Raddish Kids kits are available starting at $24/mo for their month to month plans. However, the price decreases if you choose to purchase a six or twelve month subscription. At the time of writing this there is currently a $15 off coupon code when you purchase a six month subscription. Use promo code HARVEST at checkout to take advantage of this offer! 

Have you tried Raddish Kids yet? It is serisouly such a fun service, and it's something I'm really excited about rotating into our homeschool schedule with Kyle each month! 

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Be sure to follow along on Instagram @thehappyflammily to stay up-to-date on all the latest posts and projects!

Easy Peasy Homeschool Hacks

With so many people choosing alternative methods for their children's education this year, I thought I would share my tips and tricks on how we're simplifying homeschool in our home, how to make homeschooling easy on you and your family, and what some of my favorite inexpensive and easy homeschool curriculums are. There are a ton of free homeschool curriculums out there, but I'll be sharing which ones are my go-to favorites. 

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Easy Peasy Homeschool Mindset:

I'm more than happy to admit that I'm a bit of a lazy parent. I chose to homeschool Kyle this year because I did not want to deal with 1,000 zoom calls and a million different programs. I see a lot of first time homeschooling moms online right now sharing all the things they're trying to implement this year and it honestly makes me hot and sweaty just watching them talk about it all. 

If this is your first year homeschooling my number one tip is to stick with the basics and what absolutely needs to be taught. In our home we're doing math, science, language arts, history, and handwriting. End of story. Do your children absolutely need to be homeschooled in Spanish, typing, art history, music, and every other subject? My opinion is no. If your child likes those things and they are fun and interesting, sure add them in, but if you're adding them in because you're trying to fill a seven hour school day at home and you think you need to do those things? That seems like and easy recipe for burnout in my book. 

Stick to what needs to be done, and build from there. Don't go out guns blazing just to find out that it's not sustainable a month into the year. 

Homeschool Isn't Meant To Replicate Public School:

There is a reason why you chose to not send your child to public school this year, so don't try to make your home into a public school. Homeschool absolutely does not need to fill an entire school day. Kyle starts his schoolwork in the morning around 9am, and we're done for the day well before lunchtime. He gets a math and a language arts lesson taught by Derek or I, and then he does science, history, and handwriting independently. I would say most days it takes us 2 1/2 hours to get through all the work for the day, and when I talk to other homeschool families they all say they're around a similar timeframe, possibly even shorter. 

You Don't Need to Teach to the Public School Standards:

In Utah homeschool is super flexible. We sign one legal document saying we're homeschooling and the state doesn't want any proof of hours or what we're teaching. My main reason for homeschooling this year was because I was sick of jumping through the public school system's hoops, and wanted to do my own thing. I know roughly that Kyle needs to learn multiplication and division this year, but other than that I'm doing my own thing and teaching what I want to be teaching for all the other subjects. If Kyle goes back into the public school system next year and didn't learn exactly what he should have for science and history but still got an enriching year out of it? I'll be happy. We're taking this year to learn and teach what we want to be learning about, and not letting standards or any outside influences impact our decisions.

The Best Free Homeschool Curriculums:

There are a lot of free and amazing resources for homeschool curriculum. The main curriculum we use is The Good and The Beautiful. While a lot of their curriculum is available for purchase, their entire language arts program for every grade is available for free as a PDF download (scroll down on that link and you'll see orange cricles you can click on to download for the grade you need). Their language arts is all encompassing with reading, writing, spelling, poetry memorization, and so much more. We're only a few weeks in but so far we've seen geography, history, and biblical studies all intertwined within the language arts curriculum. It's really well done, and we have no regrets so far. We downloaded the PDFs for free and then had them printed in black and white and spiral bound at our local Fedex. 

Another amazing resource for free homeschool curriculum is Miniature Masterminds. They have everything you would ever need to teach grades pk-2 available to print and download for absolutely free. Kyle is technically in third grade this year but we're using their US History and Health curriculums to fulfill Kyle's history and science for this year. They also have an entire cursive writing curriculum that we worked through over the summer.  

Their website is pretty well divided by grade level, so you can click on the grade you need, and then see all their subjects and full year curriculums listed from there. 

You Set The Pace for Your Child's Learning, Not A Book or Lesson Outline:

Just because a math book is divided into 180 preplanned lessons does not mean you absolutely need to do that entire lesson all in one day. If your child is struggling on a topic it's going to be a lot easier to break it down over several days than to plow through tears and frustration just because a book you're using said you need to get this entire lesson done today.

We noticed at one point that Kyle was struggling with learning to tell time on a clock. Instead of plowing through to the next lesson, or feeling like we had to keep digging and digging at the concept in one day until he got it right we just stopped mid lesson. We then went online and printed some more worksheets and resources that would help him learn the concept, and spent several days on it until he mastered it, and then moved onto the next lesson in the book. Let your child be the judge of how fast or slow you progress through your lessons, but don't let the books dictate what you should be doing. Be flexible, know when your child is at their limit, and stay focused on a topic until they're ready to move on. 

The Best Printer for Homeschooling:

With all of your free curriculum you're going to need a good printer to print it off. We purchased this Epsom Ecotank printer at the beginning of quarantine and it's been an amazing tool for us. For $200 you get the printer and enough ink to print 4,500 color pages and 7,000 black and white pages. It was well worth the investment and we made our money back in what we would have spent in ink cartridges in just a few months. Replacement ink when needed is also very inexpensive when you do get to the point of replacing. 

If you don't want to pay for printing at FedEx this is an awesome option. You can print at home, hole punch, and put in a binder to make them into organized books for your child. 

Outsource What You Can't/Don't Want to Teach:

If there is a subject that you know is just beyond your scope or mental/physical capacity, outsource to a tutor or online class through Out School. Outschool has a ton of classes you can sign your child up for in basically every subject you can imagine, taught by teachers. Having someone else teach your child multiplication, division, US History, Music Theory, Minecraft, sharks, baking etc... can help take a load off of your plate, and give your child a fun experience outside of working one-on-one with you each day.

If you want to try Outschool you can get $20 off your first class through my referral link.  

The cool thing about Outschool is that you can do a class that is once a week for 8 weeks, or even find teachers who are teaching all of third grade where they meet three times a week for the entire school year. There is literally something for everyone and it can be from anything as regimented as math all the way to something fun like baking. 

These are my best tips for making homeschool an easy experience for both my husband and I, and our son. While It's definitely something to be taken seriously, it doesn't need to be taken too seriously. If your child is in a loving environment and is being taught what they need to know, they're going to do great. Don't get caught up in all the things that people say you should be doing, or that you see online, and as always, do what works best for your home and family. 

If you like this post, Easy Peasy Homeschool Hacks, you might also like:

Be sure to follow along on Instagram @thehappyflammily to stay up-to-date on all the latest posts and projects.

Why We Chose to Homeschool Kyle This School Year

I honestly don't even know how to start this blog post, and definitely don't have a fancy literary way to start this off, so I'll lead with this: 2020 is the worst. Now that we got that out of the way, I wanted to talk about what went into us making the hard decision to homeschool Kyle this upcoming school year, even though we're still planning on sending Kinsley to public school. 


Backing up to a few months ago Kyle was at a private school during the pandemic, did remote learning which wasn't awful, but also not ideal. It took 2+ hours of very hands on course work from me each day, while also having several zoom meetings throughout the week that we had to stay on top of and juggle with all of life's demands. I will say that I loved his school, and after hearing what other kids got in the remote learning deal, I think we fared a lot better than most to be honest. I think Kyle got everything he could of out of second grade academically, despite finishing the last half of the year at home. 

That being said, when we originally thought he was going back to the private school for third grade, I was relieved to hear from the principal that the kids were going to return to school no matter what (unless Utah went back to the red which so far it has not). Then we bought our new home and part of that whole situation was we were buying here for Kyle to go back to the school he went to for Kindergarten and First Grade. He was so excited about that, and at the time I was super jazzed because we'd gotten an email during the summer from the district saying school would be starting full time in the fall. 

Last week we got the rug ripped out from underneath us and were told that our district was going to be doing 1/2 virtual learning and 1/2 in person learning. How it shook out was that kids with a last name in the first half of the alphabet would go to school M/W and remote learn T/TH/F and kids with a last name in the second half of the alphabet would go to school T/TH and remote learn M/W/F. This was strike one for me. 

Strike two through a million were the following: kids that went to school M/W would not be able to make up their in person school day on Fridays if there was a holiday or something that would prevent them from going to school on a Monday. Meaning the kids with a last name in the second half of the alphabet simply get more in person days than the kids in the other half  because of where their last name fell. This meant most weeks I'd be doing all the work at home three days a week, and some weeks would be four days a week. That in and of itself made the entire thing seem useless. 

Other things the school sent out were: Kids would be doing most of their remote work on a screen, and would also be heavily utilizing technology in the classrooms (I didn't want Kyle staring at a screen all day long to complete his work), kids would only be given 15 minutes to eat their lunch in the cafeteria (I've never seen Kyle eat a meal in 15 minutes in my life), kids would be instructed in games at recess where they could play with friends 6 feet a part (I get it but it sounds awful). They would also only get PE and their other specials once per month. 

For me it was just a lot of things that were stacking against each other that made me feel like I wasn't willing to jump through all of the hoops with the school district until things went back to normal. I feel like my mental health has really been struggling through all of this and I realize that my highs and lows are almost entirely based off what the school district is and is not doing. I decided that cutting ties and making decisions for my child on where, when, and how he receives his education puts me in the driver seat. 

If I'm going to be remote learning 3-4 days, I might as well do it five days a week, pick my own curriculum, and not have to jump through a million hoops and zoom meetings to get work done each day. We've homeschooled in the past, and knowing I can get through a day's work in 1-2 hours, report to no one but myself (and the state at some point?), and do it with pen and paper and minimal screens works best for us, although I know and respect that it's not for everyone. 

There are a few obstacles in all of this because we are going to be keeping Kinsley in public school right now. Kinsley simply does not participate in learning at home. She's good for maybe a week and then she's over it and doesn't really want anything to do with it anymore. We need the support of her school team and anything they're willing to help her with. She also gets PT/OT/ and speech services at school which are an amazing blessing in her life. School in general is an amazing blessing in her life and I have so much respect for everyone in education in general, but especially special education. 

Her school did send out a notice saying that if your child has a valid reason for switching from the M/W track to the T/TH track you could apply to have your days switched, which I did, and am crossing my fingers it gets accepted. I am teaching PE at Kyle's old private school two days a week this upcoming school year, and the days I teach are the exact days that Kinsley and Kyle would both be home for remote learning. It's one thing for Kyle to be doing his work at home without me and Derek loosely monitoring while Derek himself is working, but it's really just not practical for Derek to be able to watch/entertain Kinsley and monitor Kyle's school work while he is also trying to do his job. So we're praying hard that they throw us a bone and approve our switch. 

How the plan will logistically all work out is that I will homeschool Kyle in the mornings on Monday, Wednesday, Friday, while also trying to keep up with some semblance of school for Kinsley. On Tuesday's and Thursday's I'll have to use the time between getting home from teaching and making dinner to do Kyle's school work if he hasn't been able to get it done before I get home. We might be able to get into a routine where he does some of it while I'm gone for things that are self guided like handwriting, and reading passages and answering questions, but for things that need instruction like math and English, they'll have to wait until I get home. Also hoping that Kinsley won't be home on Tuesdays and Thursdays otherwise that's going to turn our house into a real-life wild west situation. 

Because I know it will be asked, we did keep Kyle very heavily involved in all of the decision making process. We explained to him what school was going to look like, and the real possibility that kids could go back to school, just for things to get bad again and there be a full closure. We even asked him if he'd want to go back to his private school which would be five full days of school and he verbally told me that he didn't want to go back to any school public or private until things were back to normal, and that when they were normal he wanted to go to public school where he'd be with all his friends from church and the neighborhood. So while this was mostly a mutually agreed conversation between Derek and I, Kyle was also 100% onboard with no backlash at all. 

For anyone who is curious and still reading, we are using curriculum entirely from The Good and The Beautiful. My main reason for going this route was because it was highly rated by all my homeschool friends, they claim to be a touch more rigorous than public school so I hopefully won't have to worry about Kyle being behind when he does go back to school, and it was much cheaper than most other curriculums we researched. We bought everything he needed for math, science, english, social studies, and handwriting for $130. When we tried to piece everything together with companies we've used in the past, the totals were $400+. I love that TGATB has everything for the student and teacher bundled together whereas other places have packs you have to purchase for the student, and packs you have to buy for the parents. So it turns into you paying double for all the things. I just loved that TGATB was all inclusive with everything, and it was generally more affordable than other places and highly rated by my mama friends! 

I think that is everything you'd ever want to know about our homeschool situation for next year. We'll be sure to keep you updated with how this all shakes out in practice over the coming months. The district has said school won't go back to normal until January at the earliest, so we know we'll be doing this for at least the next 4-5 months. Wish us luck!

9 Fine Motor Skills Activities

Working on fine motor skills with your child will help increase their brain development dramatically. Here are nine fine motor skills activities we like to do at home!

Right before the plague happened we took Kinsley to occupational therapy in the clinic for the first time in her entire life. The only time she'd had OT outside of what she got at school was the last six months that she was eligible for early intervention services when we lived in Georgia. Because money had been tight it felt like we needed to pick and choose which therapies were most important. We always picked PT over OT, but now that Kinsley is on medicaid, we felt like we should really hone in on all the therapies available to her. 

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We've seen our therapist three times now and are finally in a routine with implementing these things at home. A lot of what Kinsley is working on right now is building simple hand strength. For the most part she does really well and is certainly functional with her hands, but if we want to see some real progression with handwriting (as opposed to just tracing), cutting, and being able to do a lot more things independently, that basic hand strength and coordination is really what we need to hone in on.

Fine Motor Skills Activities:

Here are nine occupational therapy exercises we're currently working on in our house, and hopefully they can help you in your home! Most of the "supplies" we have you can get at Dollar Tree. I'll note where I got everything below, and will leave links for things when possible. 

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Threading Beads on Pipe Cleaners

This activity is really great because you can get beads and pipe cleaners at dollar tree. I like using pipe cleaners because the beads don't fall off them as easily as they would with a piece of string and it helps to keep the activity going in the right direction when things aren't falling apart. We love to make these into bracelets and it's pretty much always a hit! 

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Cutting a Straight Line

Kinsley has gotten really good at cutting this last year and now we're working on cutting straight lines. Her OT recommended drawing lines on index cards or card stock because of how sturdy they are, and because they won't flop around all over the place like a normal piece of paper. Her OT also recommended the paint strip samples from Home Depot since they're colorful, already have lines on them, and they're free!

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Snapping Math Cubes Together: 

We got these math cubes from the Target Dollar Spot ages ago, but they're really great for working on hand-eye-coordination and putting things together, and are also great for hand strength for pushing them together and then pulling them apart. If you can't find these locally, here are some on amazon for $12. (They're likely a lot better quality than the ones we have anyways).

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Picking Things Up With Tweezers

We found these same kid tweezers that her OT  uses at Dollar Tree, although they are available on Amazon as well, but they're $8 for literally the same thing. Tweezers are really great for hand-eye-coordination and hand strength and you can use them to pick up beads, learning cubes, connect four pieces, really anything. This is pretty hard for Kinsley and becomes frustrating fast, but I'm holding out that it will pay off dividends later. 

Playing With Thera Putty
Thera Putty is essentially glorified silly putty. It comes in a bunch of different consistencies from really loose to really firm. The firmer the putty, the harder it is to manipulate. Kinsley's OT gave us some to take home with mini beads in it, and Kinsley loves playing with it and digging out all the letters. Thera Putty is actually really affordable. You can purchase one pack for less than $5 on Amazon, or all of the different levels of firmness in a multipack for $12!

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Sticking Coins In A Tennis Ball: 

This is super cheap and easy to do! I bought a pack of tennis balls on Amazon for $2 (yes I was as shocked as you are that something on amazon was actually $2 shipped!). Then I used a knife to cut a hole in the tennis ball, and drew a face on it. When Kinsley squeezes the sides of the ball, it opens up the mouth and she can stick coins inside. This is an awesome hand strengthener, and is another activity that tends to lead to frustration quickly, but I know it's doing good things for her!

Squigz: 

You can get a pack of these on Amazon for $9. They're little rubber pieces that suction to each other so you can build random structures and and stuff. They also stick well to walls and windows. If you have your child stick them to a surface, and then pull them back off, it takes quite a bit of strength to get them apart/off of things, which makes them really great for building those hand muscles. 

Button Art Game: 

Kinsley's OT introduced this to us in the clinic and I think I'm going to grab it for Kinsley's birthday coming up. You put different pictures down on a board, and then you have to put the corresponding color peg into the picture to fill it in all the way. It's really fun and helps with hand-eye-coordination and also cognitive skills such as seeing which color you need, finding the correct color, and then getting it where it needs to go. 

Cupcake Party Game: 

This was another game that got introduced to us in the clinic that might go on the birthday list. Each cupcake is coordinated in color to match a Disney Princess. You get a card, and then it tells you which color piece you need for the top, middle, and bottom of the cupcake, and then you find the pieces and put them together to match the card. It's a really great multi-sensory learning activity! 

I hope this list of activities was helpful for you! I want to do better at sharing OT/PT things on the blog in hopes of it helping other mamas! Be sure to follow along on instagram @thahappyflammily where I share therapy activities and other things a lot more frequently!

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Free June 2020 Coloring Pages

I'm back with another coloring page bundle for the month of June. I've been having so much fun creating these pages each month, and it's been so fun to see hundreds of you downloading the images and sharing them with your children! There are so many fun and wonderful occasions to celebrate in the month of June, and I wanted to make sure that I included them all in this bundle! 

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What's Included in this month's free coloring bundle?
This month's free coloring bundle includes six PDF pages of everything you need to celebrate the month of June. I've included a coloring page for Father's Day, National Donut Day, Flag Day, and a coloring page for the first day of summer. There is also a super fun baseball coloring page for the sports fans in your house. 

In light of the recent events in our country, I also made an "all you need is love" coloring page. I know my voice is small here on the internet, but I felt like this was a small way that I could incorporate inclusion. I hope your children color those people every color of the rainbow and make each and everyone as unique as they should be. 



How to Print the Coloring Pages:
To download this month's coloring pages, scroll down to the bottom of this post where you can click a link to take you to the free downloads. It will take you to a google drive where you can download the files onto your computer, or print them directly from the drive. 


My Favorite Printer:
If you're in the market for a new printer, we just bought the Epson Super Tank printer from Target and it's been the best purchase ever! With the ink that comes in the box, you can print 4,500 color pages and 7,000 black and white pages before having to buy more ink! For our family this printer will pay for itself in less than six months! We have zero regrets about this printer!


I want to see your pictures!
My favorite thing is when you tag me in your photos (I'm on instagram @thehappyflammily) of your little ones enjoying the coloring pages, so be sure to tag me in your pictures on your instagram stories or in your feed so I can share your pictures too!

Click Here to Download this Month's Coloring Pages!


Be sure to stay up-to-date on all of the latest things in our lives by following along in instagram @thehappyflammily!

Social Distance Summer Schedule

Two years ago, almost exactly to the day, I wrote a post about our weekly summer schedule. That post is the most popular post written on my blog with over 42,000 page views. That post gets high traffic this time of year, but since things are looking a little different this summer, I decided to adapt the post a bit for you, and give you some ideas on how you can make the most of this summer for your children, even with the current climate in the world. 

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I want to preface all of this with the fact that I don't think you need to do one of these things every single day. If you find yourself bored and want to do something, use this as a guide. I honestly don't believe in over structuring summer. How many of us look back on our own childhood and think, "I'm so glad my mom used a block schedule the summer of 1999 and that I learned about the Spanish Inquisition and long division..."  (Not throwing shade at people who LOVE doing this kind of thing, I'm just not that kind of mom, and know I don't have the energy to keep up with anything like that!)

I'm all for routine, and finding a natural rhythm and pattern in our days, but I think the second we start telling ourselves life has to be done one way, and it needs to be that way every single time, it's when we find ourselves burnt out, stressed out, and disappointed by false expectations. I hope this post can serve as a great guide to help you with ideas of things you can do with your children, but in no way make you feel pressured to do any of these things. 

Make it Monday:
Monday's are a great time to get our crafting on! We're fresh from the weekend and feeling fun and motivated right? I love getting little paint kits from the Target Dollar Spot, or Dollar Tree. I also love just getting a bunch of random crafts supplies like paper, paint, beads, string, glue, popsicle sticks, and letting their imaginations run wild! 

Learning Tuesday: 
I am not a workbook/school work every day of the summer kind of mom. However, you could take a day a week to do a fun story time or music class with your kids. Let them pick a topic that they want to learn more about and make a mini lesson on it. If your child struggles with a certain subject, you could take 20 minutes a week to work on that with them. In our house it would be numbers with Kinsley and writing with Kyle. I don't want them to lose a lot of ground in those subjects over the summer, so those might be the things I decide to work on IF we are feeling up to it. 

Water Wednesday:
One of my very favorite things to do with my kids is fill up a kiddie pool with water, throw them and their plastic toys inside of it, and let them have a ball for hours in the backyard. I plan on doing this weekly when we move. Other fun things could be water blobs, water balloons, squirt guns, running through the sprinklers, slip-n-slides, and any other water game your children love!  

Adventure Thursday:
Adventures are harder this summer with splash pads likely staying closed. Things I hope to do are hikes, nature walks, nature scavenger hunts, scenic drives, and any other thing that gets us outdoors and exploring!

Foodie Friday:
I really want to get Kyle cooking more in the kitchen this summer. We bought him a kid's cookbook, and are working our way through it currently. You can cook with your kids, go out for ice cream or shaved ice, or do a family date night and eat somewhere new you've never been. 

Super Saturday:
This is a great day to do something as a family since the work week is over. Go on a camping trip, to the drive-ins, have a BBQ, game night, or sleepover in the backyard. The sky is really the limit. Whatever you do, do it together as a family!

Sundays: 
I did not include this on my graphic, but Sundays are a day where we go to church (depending on when they open again), or we do church at home with our kids. Then we just relax and spend most of the day at home laying pretty low. It's a reset day for us where we just take time to be together as a family with no real agenda. 

What are your plans this summer? Do you like doing small things with your kids each day, or stick to a more structured schedule? I'd love to hear what works for you in the comments!

Be sure to follow along on Instagram @thehappyflammily to stay up to date on all of the latest from us!

Free May Printable Coloring Pages

Right before Easter I launched coloring pages for the first time and they were a huge hit! I decided that I would try and attempt to launch some new coloring pages each month for you to download! I'm really excited about how this month's coloring pages turned out and tried to his all the wonderful holidays coming up in May! 

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What's Included in the Pack:
This month's coloring pack contains seven coloring pages to help you celebrate all of May's best moments from May Day, to Cinco De Mayo, Mother's Day, and ending the month with Memorial day! There are also a couple fun coloring pages like hiking and mountains, fun trucks, and a color by number!

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How to Print the Coloring Pages:
To download this month's coloring pages, scroll down to the bottom of this post where you can click a link to take you to the free downloads. It will take you to a google drive where you can download the files onto your computer, or print them directly from the drive. 

My Favorite Printer:
If you're in the market for a new printer, we just bought the Epson Super Tank printer from Target and it's been the best purchase ever! With the ink that comes in the box, you can print 4,500 color pages and 7,000 black and white pages before having to buy more ink! For our family this printer will pay for itself in less than six months! We have zero regrets about this printer! 

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I want to see your pictures!
My favorite thing is when you tag me in your photos of your little ones enjoying the coloring pages, so be sure to tag me in your pictures on your stories or in your feed so I can share your pictures too!

Click Here to Download this Month's Coloring Pages!

Be sure to stay up-to-date on all of the latest things in our lives by following along in instagram @thehappyflammily!

Church at Home During Quarantine + Giveaway

We have done church at home with our kids since the very first week of quarantine. My family and I are members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, so what we do might look different than what you do in your home, depending on which church you attend. My hope is that I'm able to point you in a few good directions, regardless of your denomination.

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>>See the bottom of this post for information on how you can win one of these felt Atonement kits for your family. 

My favorite part about doing church at home is that there is no right or wrong way to do it, and our church has not come out and said that you need to do X, Y, and Z each week in your home. You get to choose what works for you, and I think that's amazing. This post is not intended to say you need to do church like us, but to simply give ideas if what you're currently doing is not working for you. 

Have The Sacrament: I really don't know what this looks like for people in other churches, but I've seen people from a variety of christian churches having the sacrament in their homes, so I'm assuming this is a widely practiced thing right now. Obviously check with your church leaders to see how they would like this done in the home, but it's honestly been the perfect thing to get my week going in the right direction, and I'm grateful we're able to do this each week. 

Come Follow Me FHE Weekly Lessons: First of all, Angie from Come Follow Me FHE is a delight. We've been online friends for about six months now, and her Come Follow Me FHE lessons have saved our bacon this entire quarantine. 

Our church comes out with specific lessons and scriptures for our world wide church to read each week, and Angie sends out weekly lesson plans geared towards kids that are based off of those church assigned lessons. Angie creates lesson plans, coloring pages, object lessons, and so much more, all for $7/month. 

Each Sunday we print off the Come Follow Me FHE lessons, and work through as much of it as we can before we lose the kid's attention. Whatever we don't get to, we leave out in the living room, and work on it throughout the week.

If you're not LDS:
Angie has another shop, The Christian Cottage, where she provides biblically based lessons for Christians of any denomination! 

Singing Time For Kids:
After we do our weekly lesson we move onto singing time for the kids. Angie has also been putting out singing time resources as part of your subscription during this time, and we've been using her fun activities with the kids while we sing songs that are either included in her lesson, or that the kids personally pick. 

If you want to do your own thing, pick some hymns/songs that your kids love and... 


  • Make little instruments for them to use while you sing, like rice in plastic eggs as a shaker, or a box to use as a drum. 
  • You could do a hang-man game where you add a body part to your hang-man after each song.
  • Cut out a circle for the middle of a flower, and some flower pedals, and add a pedal to the flower after each song.
The sky is the limit! Your kids will love engaging in whatever fun activities you come up with, these were just some I thought of off the top of my head. 

For Personal Study: Right now the only thing I'm doing each day is reading a chapter in the scriptures. But one thing I want to get in the habit of doing is reading/listening to a conference talk at least every Sunday. Our family time on Sunday is mostly focused on teaching the kids, so I want to carve out some time before bed to make some extra spiritual time for myself on Sundays. 

Some talks from the April 2020 General Conference that I can't wait to go back and read again:
If you attend a different church, this could look like listening or reading a sermon from either a member of your church, or a non-denominational speaker you enjoy. 


Felt Atonement Kit GIVEAWAY: My friends over at J.M Porium sent me this fun felt atonement kit that the kids have been loving playing with each day. It's an easy way to teach about Christ to a young audience, and can be enjoyed by all Christian denominations. 

They're hosting a giveaway on my instagram right now, so be sure to head on over to enter!


Be sure to stay up-to-date on all of the latest things in our lives by following along in instagram @thehappyflammily! 

How to Make Oobleck

Oobleck is a fun STEM project you can do at home with your children. If you're wondering how to make oobleck with minimal ingredients, look no further. 

I love doing messy activities with my kids. I know I'm probably not in the norm with that statement, but I love it because it entertains them for hours! Things like slime, finger paints, glitter, glue, etc... I lay it out for the kids and they let their imaginations run wild and take over the rest. 

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We were having one of those Sundays that seem to go on and on with no chance of bedtime in sight, and decided to try making this Oobleck with the kids a few weeks ago. It was super fun, kept them busy right up until bedtime, and they both had a blast. 

How to Make Oobleck:

There are a lot of different recipes I've seen for how to make Oobleck going around on the internet, but the best Oobleck recipe we've used it to simply use equal parts water and cornstarch. Once our mixture was done, we stirred in some food coloring to make it a little more fun for the kids, and then let them have a blast with it. 

If you pick up a big handful of it, it feels like a solid, only for it to completely turn runny and melt through the cracks in your fingers. 

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What is Oobleck?

Essentially it's a mixture of cornstarch and water. It isn't quite a liquid, and it isn't quite a solid. When you stick your hands in it, it feels wet, but your hands don't penetrate all the way through to the bottom of the bowl right away. They kind of sit on the surface, and then slowly sink in after a few seconds. 

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How to make Oobleck more fun:

If you want to add a little flair to your play, you can add some marbles or toys into it that you don't mind getting messy. You can then let your children look for the objects inside the Oobleck to make it more of a little scavenger hunt instead of a messy free for all (we went for the free for all but if you need structure this is a good option!)



How to Make Oobleck

Print
How to Make Oobleck
Yield: 1
Author: Paige Flamm
Prep time: 5 MinTotal time: 5 Min
Oobleck is a fun STEM project you can do at home with your children. If you're wondering how to make oobleck with minimal ingredients, look no further.

Ingredients

How to Make Oobleck
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 cups cornstarch
  • food coloring

Instructions

  1. Combine all your ingredients together in a bowl, and enjoy your playtime!

Have you made Oobleck with your kids? It would be a fun sensory game while we're all at home right now!

If you liked this post, How to Make Oobleck, you might also like:


Be sure to stay up-to-date on all of the latest things in our lives by following along in instagram @thehappyflammily!

Special Needs Homeschool Teaching Resources

Yesterday on my Instagram I went through and showed everyone what Kinsley's teacher had sent home for her to work on, and I said I'd do my best to compile a list of resources for any parents out there still navigating these dark waters without much instruction from your schools. 

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I do want to start off with the fact that special education is literally so subjective and individual. That's why these kiddos have IEPs or Individual Education Plans. It's right in the name, individual. What Kinsley is working on could very well be different than what the nine other kids in her class are working on, and could be completely different than what your child is working on as well. 

The resources I'm linking you to in this post are to for activities similar to what Kinsley is working on since that's all I really have to go off of. You know your child best though, so out of these things, take what works for you, and adapt it to what will work best for your child. 

Kinsley has been working on this same name tracing worksheet since preschool. Luckily after three years she's gotten really good at it. To make your own worksheet, CLICK THIS LINK, scroll down and on the portrait option side, type the name you want, traditional font, and then generate worksheet. It will spit you out a sheet that looks like this with your child's name. 

If you can laminate it, I would. Kinsley does this every single day, so it will save you ink and paper if you only need to do it once. 

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If you want to make some flashcards at home, the ones LINKED HERE are the ones I would do. There are flashcards at the Target Dollar Spot, and at Dollar Tree, but I find the ones at the store that you buy have extra pictures and words on them (like A is for apple and a picture of an apple), and that can be distracting, at least it is for Kinsley. These printable ones are just the letter without other distractions.

To print these, click the options for upper-case only, all letters of the alphabet, US Letter for paper size, and I personally like the 8 cards per page option best. 

Then repeat this process for the lower case letters too. 

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Kinsley is currently learning her upper and lower case letters, but it's easier to have them on separate cards so that it's not distracting. I put the card down, and she tells me what the letter is. Before she could do this though, I'd lay four cards in front of her (such as A, B, C, and D), and ask her "which one is A?" and then she would give me the card. 

Once we identify all the letters, we go through one last time and I have her tell me the sound each letter makes. 

The same website for letters also makes number flash cards too. To make these, simply put in the number range you want (we have 1-20), and then select 8 per page, and print. 

To work through these, I put the card down and Kinsley tells me which number it is. Once we go through them once,  we put them away and just move onto the next task. 

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Shapes is another task that Kinsley works on each day. We go through this worksheet one time and have her name her shapes, and correct her where she makes mistakes, and then have her identify the colors. I like this sheet since it has the shapes colored in, meaning you can use one sheet for both tasks without having to print something else. You can also cut this into flashcards too, but we have ours as just one full sheet, and just point to each one we're talking about. 

Also Kinsley's sheet calls a diamond a rhombus, and I feel like that's just not setting her up for success. She's a diamond ;) 

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Alphabet Tracing Worksheets:
We work through tracing one specific letter of the alphabet per day. She does a mixture of sheets where she traces each letter, and other ones where she traces 1-2 times and then she independently writes the letter.  I've linked you to both options above, and you can see what the sheets look like below! 

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In addition to these worksheets we also count out loud to 20, and then count 20 objects. We also read before bed each night, and work on some educational Ipad apps (Lexia and Imagine Math) for 10 minutes per app. Once those things are done, we're done with work for the day! 

I hope this post was helpful! I know how stressful this whole coronavirus/homeschool thing is, but it's even more stressful when you have a special needs child and their learning style isn't like your typical child. I'm happy to answer any questions when possible! 


Be sure to stay up-to-date on all of the latest things in our lives by following along in instagram @thehappyflammily!