The App that helps kids with Spelling

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My 1st Grader comes home every Monday with a new list of words to learn.Then a test on these words is written on the Friday.

I try to make things fun because at this age they still learn when they play.So instead of rote learning or writing the word over and over I try my best to make it fun.

We’ve done bath (well shower really) time spelling.

Added Bonus: My shower doors get a real good clean

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We use really cheap shaving foam I found at Dischem for R16.00 and a little goes a loooooonnngggg way, we also used a ear bud(q-tip) but he decided his index finger was just a lot easier.

That easy – we was learning without even realizing it and the results proved it.

Then there’s spelling with Magnets.

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I found the magnets at Baby City and bought 2 packets straight away (If I recall they were R14.99).We use my baking tray to put them on.

However this began to stagnate after a while and I had to find something else.

We tried a few apps to use on our Ipad.

By far the best one we have come across  to date is a FREE app called Spellosaur…………………here’s why;

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Every week I get to punch in the words for the week plus the additional Dolch word.

We then go though the 4 stages and in the end he does the test.

Have a look:

Once you have punched in the words these are the 4 Levels you will have to finish

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LEVEL 1

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LEVEL 2

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LEVEL 3

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LEVEL 4

After all levels are achieved they then go onto the Test

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To find the app on iTunes this is the screen you looking for:

Itunes Preview

https://itunes.apple.com/gb/app/spellosaur/id461007342?mt=8

It is also available on Android

All snapshots are from the app itself and iTunes.

Hope this helps as much as its helped us.

Enjoy

My favourite Finds – 1

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Happy Spring!

I’m slowly coming out of this blogger hibernation.Actually our Telkom was down for most of the month (Torture) and has been on and off since May.

I thought Id take baby steps and ease myself back into my favourite hobby…..blogging.

I love sharing my special finds with you and this is a quickie:

Tupperware Wipes/Tissue Dispensers

We have had our two for a month now and I’m really impressed!

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WHY?

  • It has done exactly what it says it does – its airtight so the wipes stay moist for as long as they are in there, and I actually remove them from the original packaging the wipes come in.
  • Its pretty – I love pretty – Who doesn’t?
  • Its fits perfect the boys backpack and perfect when traveling lite (meaning when I throw 2 nappies and the wipes into my handbag).
  • We get asked all the time as to where we got it as everyone that sees it loves it.
  • The price isn’t scary.

Besides using the Wipes Dispenser along side nappies (diapers) I figured they ideal for the following:

  • The extra one I got will be attached with double-sided tape and will live close to the fridge or on the side of the fridge.Its use – it will house my old dry wipes that I will be reviving with tea tree oil and diluted with enough water to make the perfectly moist again.Perfect for wiping down any bottles and goodies that will be returning to the fridge after use.
  • Ideal to be kept close to your homework station or arts and crafts area for the kids to wipe their hands.
  • Leave one in the car for your tissues.

There are two sizes as you can see:

Where to get it from:

We all know a Tupperware lady – mine is Terry Roux (082 718 8206) residing in the South of Johannesburg.

If you need to find a Tupperware Consultant in your area – click on this link for contact details.

Let me know what you think.

Enjoy!!!

Ana

Battery Safety for Kids – Disposing of Lithium Batteries

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We’ve all heard and seen some horrid and at times graphic stories and photos of the dangers of LITHIUM Batteries.

AKA – Button Batteries or Pen Batteries or coin cell batteries

It’s scary how some many items in our home still require these dangerous batteries.

I’m super paranoid about having them in my home and even more so disposing of them – I don’t want any accidents before they leave  my home or on the way to the dump.

Follow the steps below and see how I dispose of these horrid little batteries:

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  1.  You going to need the following  : Packaging tape (I love how strong the new NEON Sellotape is) , good scissors and the batteries
  2. Cut a pretty good size amount of packaging tape and place the battery / batteries on one side of the tape,press them down onto the sticky part.
  3. Fold over and close all sides
  4. Cut another good size piece of tape
  5. Place the TAPED BATTERIES onto the new stripe and follow the same steps as above.
  6. When this is down you will have covered your batter / batteries twice and pretty well – then dispose at your nearest battery recycling centre (Our Builders Warehouse offers this at their entrance or if you can’t wait that long throw it away in your outdoor dustbin and not the kitchen bin)

 

Be Safe!!

Ana

xxx

 

Free Printables – Fathers Day

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I lost my dad 14 years ago and prior to having my little boys ,this day was hibernation day for me.

Then my little boys came along and they got the best dad any child could have.

(no kidding he is pretty awesome)

So lets celebrate!!

If you like me(I’m sure there are a lot of us around) – you don’t like wasting money on cards that wont really be appreciated much after the presents are open .

Only the ones the kids special hand make are kept.

So its easy and cheap to just get a free printable as long as you have paper or cardboard and colour in your printer.

Here you go enjoy!!!

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Double Click on the word “Fathers Day” below and print – easy as that.

Fathers Day

For all the dads out there – Hope you get spoiled rotten

Support Tekkie Tax Day – 29.05.2015

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This is such an awesome initiative.

The kids at the school will all be sporting their “Tekkie Tax” laces.

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Who will benefit?

Running a fundraising campaign is expensive, labour intensive and holds a lot of risk factors for the organisation organising it. In Tekkie Tax, a mix of the most accountable welfare organisations joined forces to do one very big campaign where you can choose whom YOU want to benefit from your donation. This is saving a lot of money and create a platform for organisations that normally do not have the infrastructure to engage in this model of fundraising.

Donating some of your hard-earned cash to a worthy cause can be a road full of potholes. Not all welfare organisations render an accountable service, and you need to make sure that you are supporting a trustworthy campaign!

By supporting the beneficiaries of Tekkie Tax, you can rest assure that they have been hand-picked, personally visited and all their credentials from shoe size to preferred toothbrush have been verified. So, in short – your donations will be treated with the highest respect and will be used to make life a better place: for people, animals and the environment! Whichever one you choose.

 

Yes, there are overlapping in the services that our organisations render. Like disability organisations, which are most often also involved in education and do extensive work with children. However, we have taken the main focus of the organisation and categorised them as such.

All our beneficiary organisations render a service in South Africa.

Do not feel that you should (or have to) support only one of these sectors. You can choose to get a sticker for each one that touches your heart.

Head to your nearest Toys R Us and purchase a sticker.

Content from the Tekkie Tax website.

http://www.tekkietax.co.za/

Check out the Instagram account to view how we sported our Laces this morning

 

Project Hope – Saving Abandoned Babies (caution graphic Pics)

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It’s a scary notation to think of a baby, a new born baby left out in the cold wrapped in a plastic bag left to die next to or in a dustbin, or left on the floor of a public restroom after being born. Just left there abandoned, cold and ready to take their last tiny little breath.
If you are a mom – just reading the above has made your skin crawl right?This is the horrid reality for many newborn babies.
The moms’ aren’t mental, many of these cases are young moms (older woman would have the gumption to know to cut the umbilical cord or financially stable enough to at least get themselves and baby to the nearest police station or clinic etc). It is a sad reality that many teens are sexually active. It is also a sad reality as to how many parents are in denial that their child, their angel is sexually active.
I while back I asked the teens in my family if they knew where the closest Free Clinic was…I heard crickets! There was silence. We are an average middle class family who reside in good suburbs in Johannesburg.
The girls didn’t know where to go for free contraceptive or condoms.
I looked back at my own teen years. I knew where the free clinic was (I was lucky enough to live a block away from it)but with crime being the way it is – we were never allowed to walk anywhere, when we wanted to go to movies our parents took us and dropped us of. When we wanted to go to a friend’s house, our parents took us and dropped us off. I believe that this is still the reality today…it has to be!
So even if these girls know where the free clinic is how do they get there?
Next, you will say – this only happens in townships or in poorer areas.
Sorry dears – nope it happens right here in our own streets.
There was a baby girl with her umbilical cord still attached wrapped in plastic, that was found by a lady walking her dog in Bassonia (there are no shacks in Bassonia, generally speaking the kids that reside in this areas attend private schools or one the good government schools in the area).I cried for days , this baby was brought into the world to leave it in such a horrid way. I was heartbroken. This baby was white – just clarifying this for those still in denial that this happens just outside their front doors.
The next Winter (in fact I recall it to be the coldest day that winter) a little baby boy estimated to be hours old was found dead in a park dustbin by a hobo in Linmeyer – I was done I had to do something. This baby was either white or coloured it was undetermined.
The race doesn’t matter, a baby is a little angel and none deserves this, nobody deserves to be born and died like this – there is no need for them to die.There are so many couples who are not able to conceive and have children of their own.
What infuriated me most was the fact that there is a home for abandoned babies in our area (THE DOOR OF HOPE) there are two actually in Glenvista.
I made a promise that I would never have to read these terrible stories again.I wouldn’t allow another baby to lose its life this way. I met with the Ladies from the Door Of Hope that very week.It got me thinking as to why then were the children still left to die this way.
How will a teen mom who has just given birth find a way to get to Glenvista or any home for abandoned abuse with a new born in her arms?What would she do? Call a friend and ask if the friends older brother would just give her a lift somewhere?She has kept this secret for all these months.Doubt and shame gets me to think that nobody not even her bff will know that she is or ever was pregnant.
Now for those who are moms – imagine going through the process of birth without anything – I’m talking from the start no prenatal care,then the day arrives – those contractions come, you stuck in your room – your parents asleep in the very next room, you muffle the sounds of the pain with your cute heart shaped pillow as you sit on the floor panting. It’s time to push, the pain is excruciating you are all alone.Your Algebra homework lies open on your bed above you.
There’s that push the baby is on the floor eyes open – fear creeps in what if the baby cry’s what if mom and dad hear. Your after birth comes out and you able to get up and go into the bathroom to clean yourself off and get a towel.

baby-dumped-566x400- Project HopeBaby_in_field What do you do? You remember the dustbin you have driven past so many times on your way home just a block or two away. You open the door take mom’s remote control and walk out the gate. Rushing down the road to that dustbin, blood trickling down your legs as tears run down your face. You there, standing in front of that dustbin and you place that baby on top and run back home as fast as you can, get into the shower and was it all away.
Days later, your mom asks if you’ve seen that missing towel. You shrug your shoulders why would you know????
(The above is fictional – but paints a pretty scary scene – and I’m sure that I’m not too far off the mark)

WHATS THE FACTS
1)Kids know that they shouldn’t be having sex but they are, they should be having safe sex but they not.
2)They getting pregnant and keeping this a terrible secret
3)They killing their babies because they don’t know that there are these homes they can drop them off at (they don’t even hand then to people there’s a box in the wall, a blanket inside for the awaiting baby- you place the baby in there and inside the home a little light alerts a person that there is a baby in the box ready for collection.BUT theres no way to get there no matter how close to theses home you may live)

WHATS THE SOLUTION
1)An sms line (anonymous) a line where these girls simply sms when and where they have dropped of the baby be it on the side of the pavement or in a dustbin or park or side of the highway.
2)A team of volunteers will receive the coordinates and whoever is closer fetches and attends to the baby.
3)1st Aid – all volunteers will receive Paediatric 1st aid as well as a kit that they carry in their vehicles at all times
4)A Infant car seat – all volunteers will receive a baby carrier to be kept in their vehicle at all times.
5)Once the volunteer has the baby they will then take the baby to the nearest ER and child services takes it from there.

HOW CAN YOU HELP
1)Teach each teen girl you know the sms number, especially the girls from Grade 10-12 as they will be leaving school soon and encountering other girls they will befriend from different walks of life. Help them be a good friend to another girl who might have gotten herself in this poor situation.
2) Donation of clean Infant Carrier chairs
3) Volunteers
4) Preemie Nappies and New Born Nappies
5) Paediatric 1st aid kits
6) A new laptop – at this stage I will be receiving all smses to my email but my goal is to get a stand-alone laptop with its own email so that I can rotate to volunteers on call.

SMS Number : 33903

If you would like further details please contact me via email on: mygiftsfromabove@gmail.com

 

Load Shedding – Helpful Apps

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The last time there was load shedding I had just become a new mom , it was crazy.Dealing with a new born and the darkness.Gas stoves were bought , long lasting and rechargeable batteries for torches were purchased.The list went on and on.

The wait – the guessing behind load shedding was perhaps the worst part of it all.With a new born baby never knowing when next you would be sitting in darkness was rather stressful.

Its great to forward a few years (sadly a few years later and having to still deal with Load Shedding is troublesome – but thats discussion is for another sort of blogger) and have tools available that aid you to prepare for when next you will be without electricity is a great one.

The app idea is  great and there will be one that suits your needs:

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My local community forum on fb mentioned the “LOAD SHEDDING ALERT” app seems to be the winner when it comes to reliability and accuracy in this area – however I personally haven’t tried it as its for Android users only.If you an android user and know of any other Load Shedding apps please do share them with us.

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Ive downloaded the free apps and am currently waiting to see which works most accurately for my area.Let me know which ones you have tested and what your opinion is.

All the best.

Enjoy

xxx

Ana

 

The Slantboard – Our New Favourite Item

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I always seek the advice from the wonderful team (as in Occupational Therapist, Physiotherapist ,Speech Therapist and at times even our Paed) that surrounds my child when it comes to birthday/Christmas gifts etc.Like most parents I prefer to get him something that can better his therapies or where its at right now in terms of his development.An added bonus is when both boys benefit from said aid.

This applies for our new item……. a Slant board.

What is a Slant board?

It’s a 22 Degree Angle Board designed to Facilitate reading and writing development The Slant Board is designed to provide the ideal working surface.

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The Slant Board puts your reading surface at the optimal 22 degree angle while its two collapsible legs make it portable and discrete. The folding legs will lock in the extended position making it very stable then fold flat for compact storage. The Visual Edge Slant Board measures 44cm x 30cm and weighs only 950 grams. A convenient book catch at the bottom holds any size book or electrical device, while a clip at the top holds individual papers securely.

The Slant Board is simply the best reading and writing aid on the market. It is multifunctional, lightweight, easy to store and affordable. Research has shown that by placing your reading and writing at the proper angle you will increase your reading and writing performance. School desks of the past used a slanted surface for this very reason.

My little 6 year old has taken some time to adjust to school and lets face it they dead tired when they come back from school.We have the perfect height desk for homework so that the legs are fixed to the floor and not dangling on the ground.He is at perfect sitting height to the desk, however that head is constantly being supported by his one hand while the other is working.I find myself channeling my mother….”your head is not going to fall off – sit up straight”

We started using the Slant Board over the holidays while we did our Holiday Homework and wow did I notice a difference.No holding up the head.Posture was nice and straight and overall we seemed to get the work done with a lot more ease.

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Has this changed since we have been back at school?

Not at all (in case you were thinking the improvement was attributed to the relaxation of our holiday time),we do all our workbook homework 1st using our slant board and then I test him on the test words for the week.He loves this part as he gets to use the whiteboard function on the slant board.

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The Slant Board is light weight and can be taken everywhere.Its even perfect for car travel in my opinion as ours goes everywhere with us.I love ours we do homework on it, we read on it, we play with our play doh on it, we have even done shaving foam therapy on it.Its ideal for any family and any age and I’ve seen the results.

They come in awesome colours and in my opinion reasonable priced.

Remember The Slant Board the next time you stuck on what to get your child, niece or nephew or anyone you know – its an Ideal gift……a fun,sensible,useful and helpful gift.

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Visit their website for prices and a selection of other Slant boards.

http://www.slantboards.co.za/

Online store : http://www.slantboards.co.za/index.php/online-shop

Like their Facebook Page : https://www.facebook.com/slantboards?fref=ts

 

Stilnox – The Conclusion

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I while back after the Carte Blanche report on Stilnox (http://carteblanche.dstv.com/player/755474) we decided to put our little one on it.

Let me give you the background on our little one beforehand:
Luc’s was born at 38 weeks.Was perfect in utero.The day he was born was a catastrophe and the one who was affected most was him.He wasnt suctioned or properly cleaned..actually overall neglected by staff as soon as he left my body,He went purple and lost oxygen.Anyway who was given the blame….Me.I was told that he had a genetic abnormality that was definitely passed down from the mom.For two years I carried this terrible burden until we decided to change Pediatricians and thanks to the Late Dr Heitner we went and had Genetic testing done.The outcome ……NO GENETIC ABNORMALITIES.
So my amazing little boy has epilepsy,poor muscle tone and neurological delays thanks to the lack of oxygen at birth.

So when the so called Lazarus Pill was mentioned we contacted our trusted medical advisers (Paed,OT,Physio,S.T the list is endless) and we decided to go on a two week trial with Stilnox.
Read the previous post – http://mygiftsfromabove.com/2015/02/02/going-on-stilnox-our-2-week-trial/

So the trial is done and dusted.

Did we see any changes?
Yes – we did minimal ones but we did

The Stilnox pill is minute and I had to divide this very very tiny pill in 3.This was not an easy task and many times crushed most of the pill anyway.
meaning that many times he during the trial he either got very little or no Stilnox (usually the weekends I didn’t give it to him as all I would have left were crumbs)

Would I try it again and Why?
Yes – I would like to give it another try.
Why?Two reasons
When we started the trial he had also just started school,meaning that many of the little things were were seeing I wasn’t sure were due to the Stilnox or the additional stimulation and learning at school.
the other – I would ask Paed to at least give him 1/2 a Stilnox a day as opposed to 1/3 because if anything the days we did see more activity and reaction were an the days where my 1/3 looked more like a 1/2 a tablet.
I know you asking why didn’t you just do 1/2 then? Im so by the book and because we don’t like giving him any sort of medication unnecessarily I wasn’t going to risk it without our Paed’s consent.

I’d like to try Stilnox again with Luc’s.Preferably later this year around about September.He has settled in nicely at school,is trying harder to communicate so yes…later looks like a viable idea.Ill keeo you posted.

If you are a parent or a patient or know of anyone else who has been on Stilnox i would love to hear from you.
Leave a comment below or email me mygiftsfromabove@gmail.com