Saturday, October 12, 2013

A Cool New Keyboard for Preschoolers and Awesome Websites to Try!

Over the summer I've been working on meeting requirements to open a licensed family childcare program in my home.  I'm so excited to begin this new venture, called Teacher's Pet Pre-K!  If you get a chance, visit my Facebook page and check it out!  I just posted about my new keyboard, and wanted to share it here as well. 

It's called the FunkeyBoard, and I purchased it from Amazon for $39.  I love it!  It's a color-coded computer keyboard geared towards helping children distinguish between vowels, consonants, numbers, function keys, and punctuation/symbols.  Even the little mouse is color-coded to help children learn how to right/left click and scroll!

My only pet peeve about having computers available for young children in schools is that they are often just plunked down in front of the screen with a game loaded up to play by themselves.  Are they learning anything?  Maybe, but not usually. 

The specific sites listed below will require minimum instruction for youngsters, yet will allow them true independence once they know what to do and how to use the tools (keyboard and mouse).  Best of all, these activities are easy and actually educational!  They reinforce valuable Pre-K and K literacy, language, and writing skills.  Everyone wins!

My favorite of all time is Storyline Online.  Children can watch, listen, and read along (if they have a copy) to classic books read by Betty White, Elijah Wood, James Earl Jones, and other members of the Screen Actor's Guild.

Next, children can practice writing the alphabet on an online writing pad and watch demonstrations by a cute spider on how to form the letters at: MeddyBemps.

Two other favorites (although there are many more) are found at the same site, ABCya:

Upper and Lowercase Letter Matching  

Alphabet Bingo

I hope you and your little one enjoy these activities! 

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