Mar 18

Rhyme to Read app review

The following is a review of the Rhyme to Read learning app written by a mother of preschool-age home schooled children:

Rhyme to Read is an app designed to help children learn to read using rhyming words. I downloaded this app for my 4-year-old daughter who is currently homeschooled. The app includes one book of words free and subsequent books may be purchased. Strong knowledge of the alphabet is required. Each book contains a series of short vowel words that rhyme (pat rat cat).

My daughter enjoys using Rhyme to Read. She used the app for three days for about 20 minutes each day and recognized all of the words in book one. We agreed that she had to know all of the words in the first book before we purchased book two. This became a very big incentive for her. She was very excited to move on to the next book. While using Rhyme to Read, she learned how to sound out words. The voices in the app sound the words out as the child touches the part of the word. I feel this is a very important early reading skill for her to gain. It is a skill we are now able to use in other areas of learning.

Pros: Very user intuitive. She opened the app and after very quick instruction, she was able to use on her own.

The incentive to learn new words by opening new books was a big plus. We have used other apps that give a “sticker” or similar reward. This app made her excited to learn.

The design and graphics used in the books was minimal and simple. This was a good thing for me as I prefer my children to not require constant bells and whistles to learn.

Cons: The only con I had was the size of the text. At times, I had a hard time touching the correct part of the word. My daughter seemed to do fine with her little fingers.

Overall, I recommend this app. It is a free download that includes one book. Other books come with a cost per book. This app and learning tool appeals to young learners of the iGeneration.


Mar 04

My Story. A Guest post

I guest posted my story in the Danger Days series. Click here to read my story and how God has never let go and His love never fails.

Feb 26

What do a can opener, a pencil sharpener, and a lock have to do with Jesus?







Where do we go when things get too tough and get to be too much for us? How do we relax and keep our focus on Jesus?

Use this object lesson to teach how Jesus got away and knew how to keep his focus on His Heavenly Father.

Materials: a can opener, a can, a pencil sharpener, an unsharpened pencil, a key, a lock, a bottle, and a bottle opener

Choose 4 children to each hold on to one of the following items: the can opener, the pencil sharpener, the lock, and the bottle opener.

Choose 4 more children to choose one of the remaining items in the bag: the can, the unsharpened pencil, the key, or the bottle.

When each child chooses an item, ask him to choose which of the other objects his item goes with, which object the item works, opens, or operates.

Once the children decide the correct item and object, talk about how appropriately each item matches the correct objects. It would be silly to try to sharpen the pencil with a bottle opener or unlock the can opener with the key.

Each object was made for a purpose and has a direct job to perform. Say that the children knew which item goes with which object without much help at all. But sometimes we all need help. Where do we go for help? Where did Jesus go for help?

Luke 5:16 explains that Jesus decided to go away to a quiet place and talk to His Father. Jesus knew where to go to ask for help. He knew He needed time away to listen and pray.

As often as possible Jesus withdrew to out-of-the-way places for prayer.We all must learn where we can go for quiet time and learning.

Feb 25

The Power Bible Review

powerbibleIf you are looking for a way to get children interested in reading and the Bible, the Power Bible is a different choice for them. This Bible story book is written like a comic book with colorful pictures and images.

The chapters are divided into sections to cover individual Bible stories. There are creative characters in each story drawn as cartoon characters.

Many of the characters are drawn to look like children themselves so children can place themselves in the stories and feel a personal life application as they read.


Published by Green Egg Media, the Bible story book is written on a younger elementary reading level with easy-to-read words and language.


Nov 04

Appreciative Inquiry Competencies

Think positive, do not negative

Important competencies in framing Appreciative Inquiry evaluations are Professional Practices and Project Management. In thinking about evaluations, educators must strive for ethics, integrity, and honesty in all approaches towards clients and stakeholders. Any breach in honest interactions causes disruptions and invalid evaluation results. Evaluators must obtain consent from all stakeholders and participants prior to beginning any study. Consent leads to constant communication with clients to ensure a collaborative teamwork approach. Appreciative Inquiry evaluations are not meant to fix problems but are meant to work and improve situations and interactions. Positive communication is a great benefit for all stakeholders to build professional relationships within organizations.

Preskill, H. & Catsambas, T. (2006) Reframing Evaluation Through Appreciative Inquiry. Thousand Oaks, California: Sage Publications, Inc.

Nov 03

Appreciative Inquiry: The Poetic Principle

A continuation in the posts describing the Core Principles of Appreciative Inquiry:

Appreciative Inquiry is an evaluation process that develops and creates a better future in organizations. It is not a means to fix organization issues but is a means of addressing and changing challenging issues to make organizations better and more successful. It works to discover what is working well and then envisions what the organization would look like if the best occurred.




People and organizations are stories. They learn through stories. They are inspired through stories. In a classroom with young children, pull out a book for story time and most students will join in to listen and learn. Children love stories. People want to be a part of stories.

People can choose what they want to study in an organization which influences the direction of the organization (Preskill & Catsambas, 2006, 10). The stories in an organization are subject to interpretation and inspiration and the perspectives of the individuals. The direction of the interpretations determines the direction of the organization.


Preskill, H. & Catsambas, T. (2006) Reframing Evaluation through Appreciative Inquiry. Thousand Oaks, California: Sage Publications, Inc.

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