Among the many benefits of doing jigsaw puzzles, these three points stand out.

jigsaw puzzle at teacherjulie.com
1. Physical Skills: as the child manipulates the puzzle pieces to fit together, eye-hand coordination as well as fine-motor skills are developed.

2. Cognitive Skills: memory enhancement, problem-solving, shape and color recognition are just a few learning skills enhanced during jigsaw puzzle activities.

3. Emotional Development: for those who are having difficulty putting the puzzle pieces together, patience is slowly being developed as the child puts the pieces together.

Jigsaw puzzle activities can also be given as a goal setting objective that progresses from a few pieces to multiple pieces as the child becomes more adept with the activity.

51 Talk : Teach. Learn. Earn.

51 Talk is one of the fastest growing online English Language Teaching or ELT platforms in the Philippines. Established in China in 2011, 51 Talk began its Philippine operations in 2012. There are now more than 4,000 home-based teachers all over the country and 51 Talk continues to provide career opportunities to Filipinos who have a good command of the English language.

Click here 51Talk.com/ph to know more about becoming a home-based e-Educator.

51 Talk Teacher Story Contest

51 Talk recently held “51 Talk Teacher Story” Contest, aimed to encourage their e-Educators to share their experience as online teachers. Three winners were chosen out of 250 entries based on uniqueness, inspirational appeal and over-all impact.

The winners were the following:

1st place : Teacher Moyee, who helped her student overcome his nervousness. They talked about topics he is interested in and comfortable with to make conversing in English easier. The student moved to Australia to pursue postgrad studies after a month of online lessons.

2nd place : Teacher Lilydale, a single mom who works from home. She gets to work from home and at the same time be able to take care of her son too.

3rd place : Teacher Amorlove from Cebu who manages her time to be a 51Talk teacher and an Architecture student. She understands the passion her students have for learning, being a student herself.

Michele Gumabao as 51Talk Ambassador

Michele Gumabao is an athlete, health and wellness advocate, entrepreneur and inspirational speaker who motivates young people to do more at their age. When she joined 51Talk, Michele conducted an online class to different learners. She has then spent time interacting with the students, teaching them the language and learning more about their culture.

Michele said that “From my experience, I’ve learned that patience and understanding are very important so that each session will be fulfilling and successful. Students have different learning curves, so I have to adjust and adapt to them so I can teach effectively.”

Visit 51Talk.com/ph for more info.

Being the world’s largest publisher and distributor of more than 600 original titles annually, Scholastic continues to pursue different initiatives because it is committed in helping build a nation of readers. In its effort to create a new generation of successful readers, Scholastic, with its two latest projects will harness the power of the Internet.

Scholastic Literary Pro

Scholastic Asia President Frank Wong says, “Scholastic Asia knows the importance of reading in nation-building. Much has been said about how technology has become a challenge for raising a new generation of readers. At Scholastic, we view challenges as opportunities, and have developed two key literacy programs which utilize the benefits of internet technology. These are Literacy Pro and Literacy Pro Library.”

Scholastic Literacy Pro is an online monitoring program which provides teachers the following features: accurate and timely reports on their students’ progress and performance. These information give the teachers research-based insights for them to make informed teaching and learning decisions. It promotes the student’s growth in reading by developing an individualized reading plan, with corresponding teacher reports.

Literacy Pro has a three-pronged plan to creat successful readers involves the following action points:

• ASSESS : a student’s reading progress is measured on a regular basis through a LitPro Test. The results give the teacher a fast and accurate assessment tool for evaluating his performance.

• INFORM : LitPro enables the teacher to have access to data and reports which also includes Lexile Reading Proficiency, to better understand a student’s learning needs. This paves the way for the facilitating further reading skills development. Scholastic developed the Lexile Framework for Singapore schools which allows the teacher to determine the reading level of the students.

• DEVELOP : A student is encouraged to read more when he or she is given the right books according to his or her individualized reading plan. Depending on the student’s reading level and proficiency, the Lexile Framework if able to find the right books to read.

The Scholastic Literacy Pro Library is an ebook library which gives readers of different proficiency levels unlimited access to more than 650 fiction and nonfiction ebooks.

The benefits of the Scholastic Literacy Pro Library are as follows:

• There are 150 new titles every three months and LitPro quizzes for all titles.
• Readers will surely have a great time browsing ebooks of different genres with complementing photos and illustrations.
• A word-by-word read aloud feature help younger readers master pronunciation while promoting listening comprehension.
• A glossary feature instantly links readers to the definition of difficult words.
• Audio recorder which lets students practice fluency and a note pad which promotes writing skills. Students may also receive instant feedback from their teachers through the audio recorder.
• The Scholastic Literacy Pro Library also has a search and assign feature that helps teachers find the right books for each and every student.

This one-of-a-kind library may be accessed by students at home, in school, or anywhere with Internet access.

The following schools are among the first educational institutions that implemented this groundbreaking programs from Scholastic: MGC New Life Academy in Bonifacio Global City, De La Salle – Zobel in Alabang, Muntinlupa City and Makati Hope Christian School in Makati City.

More schools are scheduled to join their ranks as early reports have produced positive results among young readers in the aforementioned schools.

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For more info on Scholastic products and programs, email educteam@scholastic.com.ph, you may also contact (02) 944READ (7323) or visit http://scholastic.asia/en today.

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve seen these almost everywhere: at the bookstores, on Social Media posts, on your officemate’s desk and maybe even in your sister’s room. If you guessed that what “these” are being referred to as coloring books, then yes, you are right. Coloring books are what people are going crazy about these days.

To be precise, these coloring books are called adult coloring books. The designs of these adult coloring books vary, from botanicals, flower gardens, under-the-sea creatures, and even cities all over the world. Unlike when you were still in school and there were “right and wrong” ways to color things, this time, you can let your imagination run wild and you get to choose the colors you fancy.

Materials: coloring books or pages, colored pencils, colored pens.

Bloom Where You Are Planted

There are other activities we can indulge in to bring out the artist in us.

Doodling
Doodling seems like a mindless task but it isn’t so. To doodle is to draw while doing another task like listening to a lecture or music. Although doodles are usually simpler versions of objects, they may be as creative as other artistic pursuits. Doodle designs are used as wall paper and gift wrap designs among others. Doodle books are also popular as coloring books.

Materials: sketch pad or sheets of paper, pens or pencils.

Hand-drawing
Artists who draw are content providers for those who love to color. Drawing by hand gives the artist a purpose, a vision and an outlet for creative energy. Hand-drawing requires concentration, creativity and imagination to be able to present ideas in images that will be understood by others.

Materials: sketch pad, a variety of pens for different strokes, colored pencils or pens

Zentangling
Zentangling is not like doodling because it has specific styles and structured patterns. Zentangles are easy-to-learn, fun and relaxing. This art form was founded by Rick Roberts and Maria Thomas.

Materials: sketch pad, pens, Zentangle book for reference

Paper-cutting
Paper cutting is one of the more difficult art forms to master because it needs precision and control especially when using the sharp blades of cutters and scalpels. This art, though a bit difficult, can be rewarding too. The wonderful images and messages being cut are awesome to behold.

Materials: Cutting mat, metal ruler, pencil, scalpel, blades, tracing paper, backing material

Painting
Painting is an artistic pursuit that may be difficult for some. This entails a considerable amount of concentration, planning and organization of ideas. It is worth the time and effort, however, when one is able to execute a masterpiece or two.

Materials: easel, chair, canvas, brushes, oil paints, acrylic, watercolor, mixing disn

Chalk art
Chalk art is writing on dark surfaces or at times, on streets and outdoors. These days, newer restaurants and cafes have their special menu for the day written on a small blackboard that the clients can easily see.

Materials: blackboard, different colors of chalk

Mandala
A mandala is a word derived from the classical Indian language of Sanskrit. Translated to mean “circle,” this is more than a simple shape with intricate designs stemming out from one focal point.

Mandalas represent wholeness and is illustrated as a model for the organizational structure of life itself showing our relation to the infinite beyond our bodies and minds. In various religious beliefs a mandala symbolizes different things: timekeeping, visions, beliefs and religious expressions as well as meditation.

There are several coloring books featuring the mandalas which are deemed therapeutic to draw and color. Many attest it relaxes the mind.

Materials: sketch pad, pencils, pens, ruler, pencil compass

Art stamping
Stamps are fun because these have already been crafted and ready to be put together to create a vision. Stamps can be made up of letters, words and things. There are artists who make their own stamps using rubbers erasers where they carve their designs. These can be incorporated in different art forms like calligraphy, journaling,and drawing.

Materials: pre-made rubber stamps, ink, paper, colored pens, pens.

Calligraphy
Calligraphy is the art of decorative handwriting. Mostly used to write quotations, these can be interspersed with drawings. Hand-written invitations are usually made using calligraphy.

Materials: calligraphy pens, ink, papers or sketch pad, pencils, erasers, ruler, calligraphy books as reference.

Journaling or journal-writing
Journaling is akin to diary writing, only better. Journaling is like a visual board where dreams and goals can be put in written perspective. One doesn’t have to write in these journals daily, but regularly updating is a must.

Materials: a good journal notebook, stamps, colored pens, fabric tapes, colored papers, stickers

It is apparent that people these days want a break from digital stimulation and would rather work using their hands while at the same time honing their imagination and creativity. They are also able to relax and meditate while doing so.

Benefits of Relaxation and a few words of caution…

Exploreum’s 3-Day Summer Camp 2015 is a learn-through-play experience which aims to stimulate children’s curiosity through memorable activities while encouraging camaraderie through interactions with other explorers in the summer camp program, and exposing the children to the wonderful world of Science particularly Marine Biology.

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For this year’s Exploreum Summer Camp, the children participants got the privilege to be Marine Explorers by earning badges for each quest that they accomplish. For three afternoons, the children learned,, through different activities, concepts about the ocean and everything related to it. They were able to utilize the different SM Lifestyle venues like the IMAX, XD:4D cinema, and the skating rink. They did a lot of exciting activities to enhance their learning experiences: painting, playing, skating, watching movies, solving puzzles and catching fish, all these geared towards learning the foundations of Marine Biology.

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Some of the Exploreum’s jam packed activities were the following:

1. Deep Dark Sea Painting – painting posters using glow in the dark paints
2. Away From Home – fishing fishes stuck in slime-o-mania and putting them back to where they should be
3. Feed the Marine Creature – getting to know the food web and apply your knowledge by feeing the sea creatures
4. Aquarium Secret Message – looking for hidden messages in the aquarium and putting these together to find out what it says by using a spy camera
5. Into the Deep Treasure Hunt – completing the time list by searching in the dark room with minimum light
6. Water World Obstacle Course – jump, climb, reach,many crawl to find “EXPLOREUM” letters around the course
7. Save the Whale – fill the pool with balls so the whale can roll back into the ocean

The Different Sea Creatures: the Exploreum Summer Camp 2015 is divided to three different groups, depending on the children’s needs and learning capabilities:

1. The Dolphins – ages 4 – 6 years old
2. The Orcas – 7 – 9 years old
3. The Sharks – ages 10 – 12 years old

The Marine Explorer’s Kit

Marine explorers get to take home the following:

1. Amazing Race Passes
2. Take-home Experiment Kits
3. An Exploreum Summer Camp Shirt
4. Microscope for 7-12 years old
5. Marine Explorer Badge
6. SpongeBob Poster

 

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Upcoming Activities for Exploreum
The Exploreum Quiz Bee is a nationwide competition engaging about 90 schools per level in a test of wit, intellect and speed. The Exploreum’s National Quiz Bee will run from July 2015 to February 2016. The winning school gets Php 1 million to fund and encourage varied school programs.

Please don’t get me wrong, I am not judging how the kids these days behave. This article will merely point out the things we do, in my opinion as a parent and as a teacher, that may hinder the way our children grow up the way we want them to. This will not try to compare one generation to the other in terms of which is better and will not indict “bad” parents and extol “good” ones.

Having said that, let me just write down my thoughts and those of some other adults I know when the topic “Kids these days” come up.

Kids these days need to look up and look around more. You don’t need statistics or testimonials to know that most of today’s young people have their heads down on the glaring and moving graphics of their electronic gadgets. Sometimes it makes us wonder if they know what is going on around them at all.

Kids these days are easily bored. Whether waiting for their turn at the doctor’s clinic, waiting for the food orders to arrive or waiting for the school service to come pick them up, they are bored. Parents see to it that they manage their time wisely by providing them with things that will entertain them: electronic gadgets.

Kids these days rely heavily and put emphasis on fast: Fast food and fast internet connection among others. Delayed gratification is something they need to learn because the truth is the truly good things in life are earned the long and hard way, with much patience and perseverance.

Kids these days are emotionally involved because of the technological advances including how fast and how graphically the news are delivered. Should children know in detail things that are happening elsewhere whereas they know nothing about what is happening in their own immediate environment? Should they be exposed to the violence happening around the world without understanding the impact of these things in their lives? Should we allow our children to read and watch things beyond their understanding?

Kids these days should learn how to form, think of and write their own opinions and not rely on what they read online. Everything is available in the internet. At the click of a button or a tap of a finger, they are able to copy and paste research work painstakingly done by others without reading and understanding the contents, oftentimes without acknowledging the author. There are a lot of cases too where they just copy and paste unverified work without checking other sources.

Kids these days want to work with computers. Nothing wrong with setting the mind to work using computers in the future. The question is, are there children who would want to work in the agricultural and fisheries sector, the human aspects of running a business, the face-to-face management or utilization of the hands and creativity in work-related tasks?

Kids these days feel empowered because they know they can get what they want easily. Parents feel they have to give the best to their children, beyond what they need. They do not want to see their children having less than their peers, as though this would make their children mediocre or deprived.

Kids these days feel entitled, that is, that that the world owes them what they want and when they want it. This sense of entitlement can prove to be a fatal disappointment when things don’t go the way the children expect. At this point, even when the children have grown to be adults, they will be having difficulties dealing with rejection, being denied the things they want to have and do because of the realization that they need to work hard and wait for the results.

Kids these days feel that they can handle all the challenges thrown at them because Mom and/or Dad are there for them at all times. We cannot always “clear the path” and face the adversities for the children to merrily make their way to their goals (which more often the parents have set and not the children themselves).

Kids these days are so dependent on the yaya to do simple tasks for them like getting them a drink of water, carrying their lunch boxes or even getting their clothes from the cabinet.

Parents should think about the long-term effects of their parenting style. Parents should guide the children to make their own decisions and choose what steps they should take to realize their dreams. Remember that you parents can’t be with them 24/7. There are a lot of life lessons and life-changing decisions that children have to make on their own in due time but if they know what to do and have been guided properly, then there is not much to fear. Parents should not be in competition with other parents or families because all children are unique in their own way.

How should we deal with the kids then?

READ MORE HERE.

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