Sympathy RosesIt’s easy to write review posts about inconsequential things because those posts require no feeling. Maybe a little thinking, mostly just retelling. No feeling.

2014 has been a hard year and I’ve discovered this about myself: While I don’t mind oversharing with the world at large about our propensity towards all things that simplify our lives or how I talk to myself in the grocery story, or how I often look for my phone around the house…while I’m talking on it…I don’t necessarily just jump right in and share when I’m feeling like crap because it’s been a crappy year.

I did go ahead and share some feelings over here at our church blog a few weeks ago.

And that’s about all I’ve got for now. I keep trying to make myself come here and write something, but there just doesn’t seem to be anything worth saying that doesn’t cause me to cry.

Maybe later.

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I am a member of the TOS Homeschool Review Crew. The focus of this post is to highlight an educational resource that my family received for free for the purpose of review. No other compensation was received and all thoughts contained in the post are my own. I keep a proper disclosure statement here.

Talking Fingers Review

Sometimes I can be a sucker for good educational apps. And when we had two preschool aged boys living with us, I jumped at the chance to review this fun one from Talking Fingers, Inc. called Talking Shapes. This interactive app is designed to help younger learners grasp the concept of the alphabet. It includes stories and games to teach kids that words are not just one whole thing, but are made up of parts – sounds, and how the different letters represent the different sounds and when put together they form different words! Watch this helpful video that explains how they teach this:

More than a colorful educational game, Talking Shapes is the product of grant-funded research and was developed by neuropsychologise, Dr. Jeannine Herron. The app introduces all 40 phonemes (English speech sounds) by helping children understand there is a relationship between the shape of a letter and the sound(s) of a letter.

Talking Fingers ReviewYou are likely familiar with simple short sentence books to help children learn to read. This is similar in that respect. The story is read to the student and then the app teaches the child which sounds go with with group of letters.

Talking Fingers Review

The whole lesson is followed up with games.

Talking Fingers Review

By the end of the lesson, the kids are reading the words!

In short, I think this app is a nice supplement to what you might be using to teach your child to read, but not a replacement for it. It makes sense for a phonics based program of reading instruction and would be a good educational activity for a child to reinforce what you are already teaching them, but don’t make the mistake of handing your child this app on an iPad and assuming that next week he will be reading. You still need to be involved. You still need a course of action not tied to technology.

Talking Shapes is available from the iTunes App Store for $5.99. It is compatible with the iPad and requires iOS 6.0 or later.

Be sure to check out what the rest of the TOS Homeschool Crew had to say about Talking Shapes!

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Brush-a, Brush-a, Brush-a…

February 13, 2014

Do you have a set oral care routine you follow each day? Listerine wants to make sure everyone does. As part of a sponsored post for The Motherhood, I headed to Target and picked up a few supplies so I can share the Listerine 21-Day Challenge with you. Check it out below.Okay, so, were you […]

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Ad: Start (or end) your day with the Wright Breakfast

January 29, 2014

Breakfast for Eight? I’m on it. Sometimes in the morning and sometimes at night. I  wanted to do both of these things recently, so as part of a sponsored post for Collective Bias®, I headed to Walmart to snag some Wright Sausages to have on hand. Check below to see what we did with them […]

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A dark and broken place

January 28, 2014

There’s a McDonalds I come to on Tuesday nights. I spend $1.08 and get a drink, sometimes tea, sometimes Coke. Sometimes I just get water. Once I ordered nothing at all. I sit here for 75 minutes while the girls are nearby attending choir. There is free wifi here and lots of fodder for the […]

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Get Your Game Time on with DiGiorno

January 25, 2014

Okay. So I don’t personally spend a lot of time sitting around watching football on TV. But my husband likes a good game every once in a while and he’s particularly interested in playoff games and such. We all enjoy watching commercials for these events and like to have a fun party food table available […]

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January 25: Upward Basketball

January 25, 2014

Today marked week 2 of Upward Basketball games for A5 and R4 and also the day we started thinking that perhaps R4 is better suited for the cheerleading squad than the basketball team… *ahem* 25/365

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On a Quest for a More Balanced Lifestyle

January 20, 2014

A family on-the-go can be tempted to make some not-so-great food choices while on-the-run. As a family we’ve decided to take fast food off the table for now, but that doesn’t mean we don’t still need some meal options that are, ahem, fast, from time to time. As part of a sponsored post for Collective […]

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January 10: Happy Birthday, Mom

January 10, 2014

My mom turned 67 today and we celebrated by invading her space with 8 additional people and being present with her for the evening. I’m thankful to be able to celebrate with her today. I made French Mousse for her birthday because she really can’t handle breads and cakes anymore. I’m here to tell you, […]

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January 9: My Katie

January 9, 2014

We needed a photo of Katie for a school project and discovered an appalling lack of single shots of Katie in my iPhoto. I must remedy this at once. 9/365

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