Word Clouds

Pebble loves sharing what she’s been learning at school. Lucky for us she has a super awesome teacher who also writes a blog! So we get to read about what’s happening at school, as well as hear it from Pebble. Recently Miss H shared that they had been making word clouds (sometimes called a wordle), and Pebble was keen to make some at home. Pebble used weather words because they’re learning about weather at school.

Weather Word Cloud

You’ll notice that Pebble used her ‘internet’ name, not her real name, in her word cloud. We’ve had lots of discussions about sharing information on the internet and she knows to be careful. She also thinks that her internet name is hilarious!

You can make a word cloud on ABCya! There are lots of features, including layout, colours and fonts, which are all super easy for kids young and old to use.

Why make a word cloud? You can use them to reflecting on learning, as creative writing prompts, for making gifts and much more! I made one for Octavia and Vicky using just the web address. Many word cloud creators let you do this, I used Tagul. How cool is this? I love that ‘Play’ stands out loud and clear.

Octavia and Vicky Wordle

You might have noticed that I’m not writing on Octavia and Vicky as often. I have something to tell you … I’ve been cheating on you! I’ve been writing a class blog, a research blog, a maths blog and have just agreed to contribute to a digital citizenship blog. I’m also still doing the odd contribution to some of my other favourite blogs. Phew! Never fear, I will still be here! Just not as often as you’re used to. You can still follow me on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook for the latest updates.

Have fun making word clouds! 

Awesome Apps for Preschoolers

Cool Apps for Preschoolers

Book Creator

Cool Apps for Preschoolers

This app is a powerful and simple tool for creating iBooks on the iPad and is just amazing for practising literacy skills. There are so many things you can create with it – it’s not just for little kids, older children and adults can use it too. Pebble loves creating her own stories by taking photos of her toys and recording her voice.  It took about five minutes for her to learn how to use it independently. I love using this in the classroom too.

Play School Play Time

Cool Apps for Preschoolers

This is one of Pebble’s favourite games to play, especially in the late arvo as I’m cooking dinner. If she’s not in the mood to help in the kitchen she sits at the kitchen bench and plays this instead. It’s fantastic for teaching children about time and patterns throughout the day with lots of interactive games. There is a game for every hour of the day on the Play School clock with each game teaching new skills. Children can also watch Play School through the app.

Bo’s Bed Time

Cool Apps for Preschoolers

This app teaches kids about bed time routine with the help of a cute giraffe named Bo. They help Bo to tidy her room, take a bath, brush her teeth, put on her PJs, find her teddy bear, read a book and give kisses goodnight. It’s super easy for kids to follow and play along, and some parts of the game change each time you play, which helps to keep it interesting. It includes concepts such as colour, sorting, matching and counting. Bo has a bunch of other games available too.

Bugsy Kindergarten Reading School

Cool Apps for Preschoolers

Go into outer space with Bugsy and learn about letters, sounds and words. When Pebble first started playing this game she didn’t know many of the letters, but now she is getting much more accurate. The game allows for mistakes, giving you as many tries as you need to get the answer right, which is perfect for preschoolers who would get too frustrated with a three-strikes-and-you’re-out style. Parents can choose which subjects the game covers, so if you’re child isn’t ready for spelling or reading yet you can choose to turn that off.

Bug Builder

Cool Apps for Preschoolers

Bug Builder allows kids to create their own cute bugs using coloured paints, dress them, feed them, wash them and take a photo of them. Once each bug has had his turn it pops out a little egg, which sees the arrival of a new bug to be coloured, dressed, washed, fed and photographed. Just for fun :) I love hearing Pebble laugh hysterically at her creations. This app is also great fun for toddlers.

Pocket Phonics

Family Holiday Planning: Toys, Games and Gear to Pack for Kids

Another app that I love to use at school and home. this app teaches children letter sounds and formation and simple words. I love how quickly Pebble has been able to make words on her own, and so does she! She almost exploded with excitement as she read new words. You can add different profiles for each user, so that they can continue their learning from the last time they played.

Which apps do your preschoolers love to play? 

Learning About Numbers – Subitising and Number Recognition

Learning about numbers - subitising and number recognition | Octavia and Vicky

I haven’t shared any of our favourite kids apps for a while – mostly because we haven’t been using them. Interests have been elsewhere! However, in the last week Pebble has been asking to play a game again, and it’s always the same one. She really loves Baby Bus – Baby Learns Numbers (not sponsored – just love it!). Baby Bus has LOTS of different apps available, but this is the one that has taken Pebble’s fancy. Perhaps the interest in number comes from her recent birthday and talking about being three, not two?

The game is played by looking at a group of objects – different types of fish – in a row. The child needs to try to count how many objects there are and match it to the correct bucket below.

Technology for Kids: Baby Bus App - Numbers | Octavia and Vicky

This game is just the right level for Pebble at the moment, and might be fun for your child if they:

  • enjoy counting or are interested in numbers
  • can subitise and/or count up to 10 objects
  • can recognise some or all of the numerals from 1 to 10

So, um… what’s the subitising business? That’s teacher-talk for being able to recognise the number of objects in a small group, without counting. At the moment Pebble can subitise up to 3 with accuracy, sometimes 4.

Pebble can recite the numbers 1 – 12 accurately. Reciting numbers in order is different from being able to count a group of objects correctly. Pebble can count a group of up to six objects correctly, often getting confused when the number gets higher than that. The app is very forgiving – if the child chooses the wrong answer the first time they can just choose another answer until they get it right.

As a parent I like this app because:

  • it has clear sound, pictures and numbers
  • it is repetitive – it counts the objects out loud each time
  • the music is optional! (thank goodness for the mute button)
  • it does not increase in difficulty as it goes along – that would be too tricky for Pebble’s age
  • it can be played in a few minutes – that’s enough screen time

If your child is still learning to recognise the numerals 1 – 10 you can talk about the shapes of the numerals to help them find the correct answer. Pebble can point and count to each object to find out how many objects there are, but sometimes doesn’t know which bucket to choose. I might suggest that the numeral she is looking for is ‘pointy’, ‘curly’.

Taking it further – Play Time!

I love a good app, but I also love taking a child’s interest to the next level and into the real world. So your child is interested in learning about numbers? Try these fun, hands on games for learning to subitise and recognise numerals.

Learning About Numbers - Subitising and Number Recognition | Octavia and Vicky
Dice Bingo and Numerals Card Game – both from Lessons Learnt Journal

Learning About Numbers - Subitising and Number Recognition | Octavia and Vicky

Sorting and Subitising with Egg Cartons – from Learn with Play at Home

Pebble ~ Three years old (36 months)

Kylie @ Octavia and Vicky

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Octavia and Vicky: Best of 2012

Happy New Year! I’m playing along with a fabulous group of bloggers who are all sharing their best activities for kids from 2012. Here’s my list of favourites from Octavia and Vicky:

Most Popular

Christmas Crazy! You guys loved these Christmas games.

 

 

Most Comments

The crowd went wild for I Heart My Body 2012!

 

 

My Favourite Arty-Crafty Kids Post

This was so much fun to create and write. It makes my heart sing.

 

 

My Favourite Kids Play Post

The Play Dough Cup Cake Party!

 

 

My Favourite Parenting Post

A lesson that Pebble and I are still learning with each stage of her development!

 

 

My Favourite Food Post

A recipe from my childhood :)

 

 

My Favourite Geek Post

One of the geek-techery things I use the most – podcasts! Plenty to choose from for kids and adults.

 

 

Please visit the Best of 2012 Co-Hosts:

bestof2012badge

52 Brand New ~ Adventures in Mommydom ~ angeliquefelix.com – The Magic Of Play ~ At home with Ali
B-Inspired Mama ~ Blog Me Mom ~Boy Mama Teacher Mama ~ Busy Kids = Happy Mom
Carrots Are Orange ~ Caution! Twins at Play ~ Coffee Cups and Crayons ~ Confessions of a Montessori Mom
Craft To Art ~ Creative Family Fun ~ Creative Kid Snacks ~ Creative Learning Fun ~ Creative Playhouse
Creative with Kids ~ Cute and Peculiar ~ De tout et de rien: Activités pour le Préscolaire ~ Dirt And Boogers
Edventures with Kids ~ Enchanted Homeschooling Mom ~ The Good Long Road ~ Frogs and snails and puppy dog tails
Glittering Muffins ~ Go Kid Yourself ~ Growing A Jeweled Rose ~ hands on : as we grow ~ Here Come the Girls
Home Learning Journey ~ Housing A Forest ~ Mama Smiles ~ In Lieu of Preschool ~ Inspiration Laboratories
Inspired by Family ~ It’s A Long Story ~ JDaniel4’s Mom ~ Kids Creative Chaos ~ Kid World Citizen
Kindergarten & Preschool for Parents & Teachers ~ Kitchen Counter Chronicles ~ Laughing Kids Learn ~ Learn with Play at home
Lessons Learnt Journal ~ Life At The Zoo ~ Little Artists ~ Living Life Intentionally ~ Living Montessori Now ~ Love, Play, Learn
Loving My Nest ~ Mama Pea Pod ~ mama miss ~ Mamas Like Me ~ Mess For Less ~ Mom to 2 Posh Lil Divas ~ Momma’s Fun World
Montessori Tidbits ~ My Buddies and I ~ My Little Bookcase ~ My Nearest and Dearest ~ No Twiddle Twaddle ~ Nurturestore
Octavia and Vicky ~ One Perfect Day ~ ourfeminist{play}school ~ Picklebums ~ Play Activities ~ Playdough to Plato
PlayDrMom ~ playful learners ~ playing with words 365 ~ PragmaticMom ~ Putti’sWorld ~ RainbowsWithinReach
Rainy Day Mum ~ Raising Playful Tots ~ Reading Confetti ~ Red Ted Art ~ Royal Baloo ~ Science Sparks ~ Scribble Doodle and Draw
Small Potatoes ~ Smiling like Sunshine ~ Sun Hats & Wellie Boots ~ Sun Scholars ~ Teach Preschool ~ The Educators’ Spin On It
The Fairy and The Frog ~ The Freckled Homeschooler ~ The Golden Gleam ~ The Imagination Tree ~ The Iowa Farmer’s Wife
The Outlaw Mom Blog ~ The Pleasantest Thing ~ This Reading Mama ~ Toddler Approved ~ Train Up a Child ~ True Aim
Two Big Two Little ~ What Do We Do All Day? ~ Connecting Family and Seoul



Free Christmas Movies for Kids Online

It’s a very busy time of year, right? Everyone is rushing around and getting stressed out. Pebble and I have been enjoying some much needed down time with some of these Christmas movies on You Tube. We thought you might like them too.

The Bears Who Saved Christmas

The Berenstain Bears Christmas Tree

The Snow Man

Rudolf the Red Nosed Reindeer

What’s your favourite Christmas movie?

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