These pages show all the Ambleside Online Booklist books that have been recorded as audiobooks by Librivox, with links to all their respective download pages. These are unabridged audio book readings, done by volunteer readers, so their quality varies but is mostly quite good. Only the public domain titles from their list are included here… Hundreds of audios, from grades 1 – 8. This is a wonderful index & collection, even if you aren’t doing Ambleside Online or Charlotte Mason-style learning.
From the HowDoesShe? blog comes these way fun printables that do wonders to promote some fun family discussion around the table: “Here are questions that encourage family talk! We believe in families and we know the power of getting to know each other better. So what we’ve created for you are 30 questions that you put in a jar. It doesn’t need to be a fancy jar. Each night at dinner time pull out one question and read it to the family. Some are silly and some are serious. Get to know each other better and smile as you create memories with your loved ones!”
These are delightful, and great fun! We had a similar “store bought” thing like this that we used for years around our table and it never failed to provoke some interesting discussions — even if it was just to laugh at the sometimes crazy questions. Print out these PDF masters, cut ’em up and put ’em in a nice jar on your table and you are guaranteed to have some memorable supper discussion times with your kids over the months to come. There are FIVE sets of 30 questions on this blog, so there are 150+ in all. Just follow the links to all five sets. Collect ’em all.
CLICK HERE to go to the website. Links to all five sets of printable questions are on this page.
Let’s continue our weekly roundup of past freebie resources, shall we?
Amazing Adventures in S-L-O-W Motion
Sometimes the most common, everyday things around us can take on a breathtaking beauty and grace when viewed in a different way than we normally see them. Today, let us direct your attention to a wonderful page of slow motion videos on the neoK12 site, where you will find animals, surfers, car crashes, bursting water balloons, matches catching fire, drops of water, and dozens more everyday subjects made most EXTRA-ordinary when viewed in super s-l-o-w motion.
Click here, then click on the different videos on their page.
This is ME Writing Challenge
You are the only one who knows your story. This well-done site for teen and adult writers helps you tell it your way with help and ideas from the “This Is Me Challenge!” Here you’ll find dozens of wonderful writing prompts and ideas to help your older students tell their own story and learn to write better in the process.
Click here to see all the writing challenges posted to date. Each of these links to a more detailed version w/ extra challenges. A unique, revealing and memorable approach to creative writing lessons!
Sound Uncovered: An Interactive Book for the iPad
Explore the surprising side of sound with Sound Uncovered, an interactive collection from the Exploratorium featuring auditory illusions, acoustic phenomena, and other things that go bump, beep, boom, and vroom.
Hear with your eyes, see with your ears, test your hearing, make and modify recordings—this app puts you at the center of the experiment.
How do you make a saxophone growl? Are there secret messages in music played backward? Can you talk and listen at the same time? Why does the sound of gum chewing drive some people mad? Listen up and find answers to these questions and more as you take an auditory trip to the place where sound gets truly interesting: the space between your ears.
Click here for info on downloading this iPad app
Color Uncovered: An Interactive Book for the iPad
When is yellow yellower than yellow? What color is a whisper? What’s missing from the palette of Renaissance painters?
Explore the surprising side of color with Color Uncovered, an interactive book for the iPad, featuring fascinating illusions, articles, and videos developed by the Exploratorium.
There’s a broad spectrum of colorful surprises in store that focus on the art, physics, and psychology of color. In keeping with our hands-on spirit, there are also a few color activities you can conduct yourself using your iPad and simple items you have at home: a CD case, a drop of water, and a piece of paper. You’ll never look at color the same way again.
Click here for info on downloading this iPad app
Here’s an amazing site that offers downloadable PDF worksheets in all sorts of categories, customized to your specifications. There are hundreds of worksheets here, with millions of possible configurations. Highly recommended! (Be sure to check out the puzzles category if your kids are maze or brain-teaser lovers!)
“You can make and print out worksheets of topics including math, handwriting, geography and english language and more. Good to use for extra practice or to supplement what you are teaching.” – Submitted by Adriane White
Click here to go to the site!
PLANNED SPONTANEITY (PDF ebook)
So, you have read everything you can about planning a homeschool schedule. You have tried some planners – but they take too long and don’t seem to work for you. What now? It is time to try a planner with a difference, courtesy of Julie Gilbert at homeschooling-ideas.com.
Julie’s new ebook, “Planned Spontaneity”, helps you do just that – plan for spontaneity in your homeschool. With a simple, yet very effective approach, this planner is a great way to make your homeschooling time a lot more fun and creative. Loaded with great tips and ideas that you can put to use right away. Check it out!
Click here to go to the download page for this resource.
LESSONS FOR THE YOUNG ECONOMIST – Textbook & Teacher’s Guide
Wonder of wonders, this great textbook by Robert P. Murphy, is neither excruciatingly boring nor patronizing to young students. Instead, it is a fascinating and informative text for junior high & up students (we love the chapter on Robinson Crusoe economics), covering both pure economic theory and also how markets work. If you want your students to understand honest-to-goodness conservative, Austrian theory economics, this is the resource you need. Highly recommended!
Mises Institute has both the complete textbook AND the teacher’s guide available in digital format for free (they also have a hard copy book version for sale).
The textbook (in online html format, or .epub format) is available HERE.
The teacher’s guide (in PDF format) is available HERE.
Pianist Aaron Tomberlin put together a great “Introduction to Piano” course that is freely available on YouTube. Each of the 14 video lessons runs about 20 minutes, and is appropriate for students ages 10 and up. You can start with the course overview video we have linked to here. These are very well done.
Aaron also has lots of other music “how to” videos, so if you like these, be sure to subscribe to his YouTube channel.
In the bestselling manual The Kitchen Primer, your young helpers will learn:
The fundamentals of kitchen safety, cleanliness, and manners
How to read and follow recipes
How a cook should properly measure ingredients
How to decorate and set the table
How to wash the dishes so they will really get clean
How to make delicious snacks and meals …and much more.
It’s the perfect “hands on” cookbook, textbook, & learning guide for any students (boys or girls) ages 8 – up who can act responsibly in a kitchen environment and can follow step-by-step recipe directions, written by Martha (Marmee) Greene. (158 pages, PDF)
Sign up now to get your copy of The Kitchen Primer – 100% FREE. This offer will expire in just a few days – Grab it now!
Here are more freebie resource links for you, brought back from our archives!
String Figures for All Ages!
Can your kids have fun, improve their dexterity and learn about design and geometry from just a simple loop of string?
Check out this great collection of tutorials and cool designs for making all sorts of great string figures that have been collected from cultures around the world. From simple “cat’s cradles” to “Jacob’s Ladders” and beyond, there are many fascinating designs and projects here that will keep some kids busy for hours.
This is old fashioned “digital” fun that incorporates all sorts of thinking skills that generations of kids used to enjoy. Why not give it a try?
Click here to go to today’s resource site.
IRASSHAI – LEARN TO SPEAK JAPANESE
Irasshai, a video course from Georgia Public Broadcasting, teaches Japanese language and culture skills to high school and college students and adult learners and professionals.
The 138 video lessons in this well done series get up close and intimate with viewer learners. Dr. Tim Cook, an Emmy award-winning instructor, takes students on a personal journey to where Japanese is spoken. Sometimes it’s predictable – inside a Japanese home or a Tokyo office building. Sometimes it’s less so – a sushi bar in Atlanta, a fishing hole in the Appalachians.
This is an award winning, excellent way to learn basic Japanese language skills & be introduced to many fascinating aspects of Japanese culture and society. Good for jr. high through adult learners!
Click here to go to the site!
Wow! This has to be the motherlode of nature stories for kids! You will definitely want to check this out.
Minnesota Conservation Volunteer magazine’s “Young Naturalists” series is designed to engage elementary and middle school students with a wide variety of nonfiction topics on natural science and outdoor life. Each full color, illustrated story is accompanied by a Young Naturalists teachers guide that includes ready-made classroom activities. Bookmark this impressive library of over 100 stories and refer to it as you study outdoor and nature topics. Highly recommended!
Click here to go to the site!
EARLY SETTLERS AND THE FOREST
Here’s a great educational picture book/coloring book by Debbie Sluggett and Larry Fox from the Canadian site, Learn Forestry.com on early settlers and their relationship with forestry and wood products in both Canadian and US pioneer days. It is great for primary grades!
To download this PDF ebook, RIGHT CLICK HERE and “save link” to your computer. Mac users, press the “control” key and click the link and save to your mac.
FLEXAGONS & OTHER COOL GEOMETRIC TOYS
In these hands-on tutorials, you’ll learn how to make a flexagon, a most fascinating geometric toy! It looks like an ordinary paper hexagon with a front and a back, but hidden inside is a third side (or face) that can be brought to the outside by flexing the paper.
Flexagons are folded paper polygons that have the neat feature of changing faces as they are flexed. There are many types of flexagons. The names of flexagons tell the type of polygon and the number of faces.
Click here to go to the Flexagon introductory page with instructions on how to make a basic Flexagon.
Then to make a Hexa-hexaflexagon, go here.
Then to make a Tri-tretraflexagon, go here.
And THEN, to make a way cool FLEXTANGLE, go here!
Jennifer Flanders at flandersfamily.info created this fun and flexible “Reading Challenge” printable. Here’s what she says about it:
“I love reading. I love making lists. I love challenging myself (and my children) to reach new goals. And I love pretty vintage artwork. So this summer, I decided to combine all those likes and create a Reading Challenge that can be easily adapted for any age: You should be able to find many of these titles at your local library, but if you are given to re-reading your favorites as often as we are, you may want to add a few to your own collection.”
This is a fun way to get your children to read a wide variety of books in categories you might not otherwise think of.
CLICK HERE to go to the download page!
CIVILITY COSTS YOU NOTHING: Great Quotes on Manners (PDF ebook)
Many writers, observers and philosophers have written about the value of good manners throughout the ages. Their comments contain a wealth of insight, humor and wisdom, and have application for our kids even today.
This unique little compilation of great quotations can be used for penmanship and copywork practice, memorization, or to print out and stick some choice quotes on your refrigerator door! Check it out!
To download this PDF, RIGHT CLICK HERE then “save link” to your computer. Mac users, press the “control” key then click the link and save to your Mac.
Here are over 180 different visual, performing and literary Arts related lesson plans from the ArtsEdge program at the Kennedy Center. These downloadable lessons cover a huge range of arts topics – from writing haiku to Irish Dance to creating comic strips.
You can search the lessons by keyword, arts subject, and grade level. Use the blue “Lesson Finder” box and fill in the specifics to find what you’re looking for!
CLICK HERE to go to the download page!
OUTDOOR BIOLOGY INSTRUCTIONAL STRATEGIES
Outdoor Biology Instructional Strategies (OBIS) is an outdoor program that offers young people fun and challenging opportunities to investigate ecological relationships in their local environment.
OBIS was developed in the 1970s at the Lawrence Hall of Science to help adults (teachers, parents, community leaders) take young people outdoors to experience ecological principles in their local area.
The 97 OBIS activities in this PDF collection are meant to increase environmental awareness, and can be used individually or in combination. These simple experiences then act as a gateway for children and adults to explore and understand their local environment.
Click Here to go to the download site
MATH PUZZLES, COMPETITIONS & BRAINTEASERS!
The Centre for Innovation in Mathematics Teaching over in the UK has put together this GREAT collection of brain-stretching mathematical problems and shape related teasers (including printable tangram puzzles, sliding blocks, pentominoes, and dissection puzzles). There are dozens of them on this page, all designed to get your students thinking mathematically and using their problem-solving skills!
Click here to go to their math challenges page!
LEARN GREEK FREE
Learn Greek Free.com offers a complete 13 lesson video course (along with dozens of free downloadable handouts & review sheets) to enable students to read the New Testament in the original language. No other resources or books are required.
As explained by instructor D. Eric Williams:
“The method of instruction employed at LearnGreekFree.com is designed to begin the learning process as quickly as possible. The lesson plan will enable you to read the New Testament Greek after a few hours of study. Rather than burden students with morphological technicalities right off the bat, the pupil will learn Greek grammar in the same way he learned his mother tongue; in context and as the need arises. In this fashion the learner is able to make quick progress and the learning of the Greek becomes a joy, not a burden.”
Click here to check it out!
THE BASIC COZY SPELLING COURSE
Here’s a complete 30 lesson spelling course especially designed for students grades 6 to 8, with a complete course outline, lesson plans, dictation, answer key, and more. Good stuff!
Says the author, Marie Rackham:
“Spelling, like grammar and punctuation, is a technique of English. Spelling is an important communication skill. In my opinion, since the advent of the Internet, it is even more important because words on a web page may determine what people think of you and your abilities. Spelling, grammar, and punctuation errors will make you appear less credible to your audience. Good luck and have fun with the course!”
Click here to go to the site! (There are other courses available for sale on the site, but the Spelling course is free!)