Home Learning help with Learning Resources
Like millions of families across the globe, we have been plunged into home learning with our children. We have tried to approach this new routine with positivity (even though this has not always been easy). Just as the lockdown was announced I was offered the chance to choose a couple of products from Learning Resources to review. Having had a look on the site, I knew there were two areas of learning which I wanted to focus on with the boys during the lockdown and these have been extremely helpful.
One area which the schools have been keen to focus on over the last couple of years has been Times Tables. The school split the learning into Bronze, Silver, Gold and Platinum sets which encourage the children to work their way up to earning their ‘badges’ as they progress through school.
For Albie, this hasn’t come as naturally as it has for Lillie and Ollie so I really wanted to help him to make progress, whilst also ensuring that Lillie and Ollie keep on top of their Times Tables knowledge away from school.
Tackling Tables – Student Set
The Tackling Tables student set contains three packs of cards split down into three colours;
- Blue for the 1, 2, 5 and 10 times tables
- Green for the 3, 4 and 6 times tables
- Red for the 6, 7, 9, 11 and 12 times tables
This is a fun way of learning the times tables and when used for just 10 minutes a day really helps to cement and speed up their times table recall.
How to Play
To play the game you lift a card from the pack and cover one of the 3 numbers on the card. The player then has to tell you the missing number within 3 seconds to ‘win’ the card.
With Albie, we have only been using the Blue pack as these are the times tables which he needs to focus on for Year 2. When we first started playing Tackling Times Tables with him he would win around half of the pack but after playing for just 10 minutes a day since the start of the lockdown he is now able to recall all of the cards within 3 seconds. Not only has this helped his confidence it has also improved his mental arithmetic which has helped with other areas of his maths.
Money Activity Set
One other area the teachers have asked us to focus on is money so I thought this could be a useful set for homeschooling. I was right, this set has been invaluable in helping Albie and Ollie with their home learning.
The money activity set includes:
- 70 plastic coins
- 12 play notes
- Eight double-sided price tags
- 12 double-sided money puzzle cards
- Wipe-clean piggy bank card
- Double-sided spinner
Albie had been set a few tasks involving money. Rather than just working his way through the worksheets we decided that we would play ‘shops’ with Lillie and Ollie.
Albie used the cards to show what was for sale, Lillie and Ollie would then come to buy something with their money and Albie had to work out their change. He would create a number line starting with the item and ending with the money he had been given. His task was then to use the coins to get from one end of the number line to the other using as fewer coins as possible.
Not only has this helped with his money learning but it has also helped him with his mental maths in general. There are various games which can be played with the money activity set and I have been really pleased to see that the Beans have brought the set out when not in ‘school mode’ to play together. Ollie and Albie have both used the double-sided puzzles to find the correct coins to match with the item on sale.
Home Learning during the lockdown
So how are you coping with home learning during the lockdown? Like most people, we have had good days and bad. I am slowly learning to let the bad days go and realise that I am NOT a teacher. When the children really don’t get it or find things too much we put the pencils down and head outdoors to get some air. Often this is all that is needed to help them to refocus but there have been a handful of times where I have also said “enough school for one day” and we have packed up early.
It’s a difficult situation for us all to be in. I firmly believe that learning should be fun so where possible I have tried to help the children to find the fun in their lessons or to learn the same topic but perhaps using different tools and methods such as these learning sets.
What have you found has helped you with home learning? If you’re looking for free learning resources there are some really helpful sites online.
If you pop over to Mighty Mama Bear she has been reviewing Sight Word Bingo which is another great game from Learning Resources.