July 11, 2011

Search Engines! and a little update

I have my first three graduate courses under my belt. Yay! I loved them all. Since I am no longer homeschooling but still immersed in the world of education, I think I will continue to write in this blog. As I learn little things here and there, I'll pass them on. For example, I have discovered a treasure trove of search engines.

I remember the days when I had to go to the library and thumb through the card catalog to find resources. Now I can access "libraries" through my computer. But the Internet is so BIG! So here are some search engines that are safe for kids and direct you to the good stuff:

TekMom  This is a well-organized page with all sorts of search engines to choose from.

KidsClick! describes itself as "a web search site designed for kids by librarians - with kid-friendly results!" Search by topic, word, Dewey Decimal range, media. Yes, very nice.

Ivy's Search Engine  Lots of search engines and specialize links.

Kids Search Tools Combines several kid-friendly search engines onto one page.

Awesome Library  Thousands of sites organized for students and educators. Click on who you are!

Browse the Dewey Decimal System  Pick a topic and find amazing online resources

My most amazing personal favorite:

Database of Award Winning Children's Literature   A librarian organized award winning children's literature in all genres. You can chose the reader's age, the historical period, the gender of the protagonist, the book format, etc. All I can say is "wow." Narrow down your child's preferences and a list of books will appear. Magic.

Update on my kids: (thank you Sarah Joy for reminding me)

Peter will be a senior in college this fall. Yikes! He is staying in Chicago in a house rented with friends, working on an academic project and participating in a reading group with a professor in his field. He's still not sure what he wants to do after graduation. Stay tuned. :)

Meg will be a college sophomore this fall. She finished her first year at a state university with all A's and B's. I add that because you may know that she was a struggling reader until she was 10. Hang in there and have hope! This summer she took two classes and is working half days. The big news for me is that she moved out of the house. She and a couple friends rent a house near campus. When I was taking classes I got to see her everyday because she works just down the hall from my classrooms. I even got to introduce her to my professors and classmates. She is very proud of me and even thinks we should try to take a class together.

A tree branch thwacked her across
the face during a night hike.
Missa will be a high school senior and will be applying to colleges this fall. She just got back from a two-week hiking trip in the Rocky Mountains where she climbed Pikes Peak and learned how to survive in the wilderness! I'm amazed at what she can do.

Now that I have about a month before my classes begin again, I plan to organize all my homeschooling materials. Since part of my graduate course work is writing lesson plans, I would love to be able to locate books that I know I have somewhere! I also have household projects calling my name, so I'll be plenty busy the next few weeks.

As always, please feel free to send me questions!


D-Carlton said...

Please continue to blog about your graduate school experiences. I have been thinking a lot about this lately. Graduate school seems like a reasonable thing to do when I am done homeschooling. I am homeschooling high school with my oldest. When she is done, I see being done with homeschooling. I have a degree in biology but I don't see myself continuing with that field. Love you blog and read through a lot of the archives. Thank you.

Anne Dye said...

Glad you are going to keep writing! You have a lot to offer all of us who are still learning at home;-)

Sarah_Joy said...

Thanks for sharing these resources! I'm especially excited to try out the award winning books one!

I'm glad you're going to keep writing! Updates on the kids from time to time would be great too, if they don't mind : )

Penny said...

Thanks Jena, these are very helpful!

I'm so glad you had a great graduate experience, and I wish you the best in your future endeavors :)

I also want to thank you for keeping your blog up - I read it so often for encouragement and inspiration. Thank you so much!

Traci said...

Wow! How the time flies! Peter is a senior?! Keep writing, we will keep reading!

G.Dowell said...

Hi Jenna! My how the kids have grown and are moving on in their lives. Great success stories they are! Just stopped in to take a peek at what you've been up to. I myself am thinking of going back to school. Kayla will graduate from homeschool this year and I'm looking to fill my extra time. No better way than with more school!

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