Mega List of Free Resource to Teach Kids to Read

Reading is probably the most important homeschool activity, but it can also be one of the hardest. Thankfully teaching reading doesn’t have to cost a lot of money.  Here is a list of free resources I have found helpful for teaching kids to read.

Note: Not all are iPad/tablet friendly.  (ie flash player for games and videos)

First: The best free comprehensive program:

Sound city reading is by far one of the best and most comprehensive phonics based reading program that is free! There are many pdf documents you can print off. I love the idea of a reading road with houses that contain all the different sounds.

Free eBooks or iBooks:

Don Potter education pages has many old spelling books to download. He also has some excellent Phonics reading resources. Don also has excellent information also on how Webster’s blue back speller was used to teach reading.

McGuffey reader – a classic of the one room schoolhouse.

New England primer – another good classic.

Dog on a log books has many printable phonics games.

Primary concepts ebook that uses letter tiles.

Free Online games or apps:

Blastoff to reading online games

Teach your monster to read

Free videos:

schoolhouse us free phonics lessons and videos(videos not for iPad but lots of good lessons that can be printed)

Ron Paul curriculum reading program – first 40 video lessons free with worksheets.

First step reading has free video lessons

Full Phonics Curriculum:
Old fashion education – simple

Sound city reading – the best free curriculum.

Reading Bear – some good interactive activities.

Progressive phonics books have you read the hard words, and your child reads the easy words.

The Easy Peasy full curriculum is more than just reading.

The Canadian site for the society for quality education has a free reading program with many resources.

Free worksheets:

Tinas Dynamic homeschool plus has many printables.

Spelling worksheets and activities.

If you are adventurous you can make your own copywork and worksheets with special tracing fonts and MS word or Pages by following instructions on the link below:

Free Blog/Podcasts:

IEW – many excellent resources especially on learning disabilities and the podcast is one of the best ones out there.

All About Learning Press has wonderful free resources and a great blog about reading and spelling.

This reading momma is a highly recommended blog.

The measured mom blog also has many free resources.

Other miscellaneous resources

You can search through goverment documents/papers on teaching at Education Resources Information Center

Eye can learn is not technically phonics but there are several resources for eye tracking if you child is having problems reading. (also apps for the iPad.)

Please leave a comment below if you have found some other free resource useful.

Review of Ultimate PreK-12 Annual Membership

Disclaimer: I received a FREE copy of this product through the HOMESCHOOL REVIEW CREW in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way.

My family is so excited to be reviewing the Ultimate PreK-12 Annual Membership from  I have subscribed several times in the past to and I am always amazed at the variety of courses available. is the perfect companion for our homeschool. There is something for each of my kids from Preschool all the way to High school.

For this review I decided to see if could be used to homeschool all of my children all the way to high school.

You can easily search for resources based on your childs grade or based on the subject.  I first started with my 4 year old boy.


I have a very active 4 year old boy, so I definitely need something to keep him busy. Searching under the preschool grade level I found Preschool in a Box. Most of the resources are downloadable and printable. There are many coloring sheets I could print out and have him work on while I worked with the older kids. I found a firetruck for him to color and a worksheet for him to cut out and count the number of firemen.

Grade School:

For my boys learning to read, there are many wonderful resources at  There is a whole section of resources under something called the Literary center.  Some of my favorite resources are the Phonics Reviews and the Quick Reading Intervention, Grade 2+ ebook reading remedies.  You can print out many worksheets to help work on some week areas they need work.  I especially love the ebook Fourteen Steps To Teach Dyslexics to Read and Write which is available as a pdf download with your membership.

For my older boys I was interested in the science classes that had videos.  I found multiple science videos with cool experiments.

My boys and I enjoyed watching the Hooked on science videos and trying the experiments ourselves.  The experiments used objects we could easily find around the house.  The only problem I encountered was using the iPad for the videos.  (Everything else seems to work fine on the iPad) For some reason the videos did not play on the iPad.  I think it might be due to the internet filter we use.  I will definitely research this this and find out if videos will work on the iPad. It would really be nice to watch the experiments on an iPad.

High School:

For my daughter who is a sophomore in high school I needed some resources for her upcoming apologetics debate class.  We found many great videos on Appologetics.  The Addressing Cultural Issues class has several videos and a worksheet that goes along with each video.  I am also hoping to utilize the Biology class videos for my daughter.  The Biology class is a full year High school class with videos and outlines for each lesson.  There are also worksheets to fill out while you watch the lessons and tests you can print out.

If you homeschool children of any age, I highly recommend you checkout!

Be sure to visit the Homeschool Review Crew blog to read more reviews of SchoolhouseTeachers. My family loved Other families used this product too so be sure to check out their reviews by clicking on the banner below.

Online Homeschooling For the Whole Family { Reviews}

Circle parent control wifi internet filter review

The Circle is a device that recognizes and filters every internet device on your home WiFi.

What I like about the circle internet filter:

  • Simple to setup
  • Phone App to control and monitor
  • It’s a hardware filter not software
  • Can pause and adjust the filter the internet while away from home

What I don’t like about the circle internet filter:

  • Only one wifi channel Update: now both WIFI channels are monitored.
  • May provide false sense of security since it won’t filter all apps.
  • May take some customization.

What is the circle?

The circle is a piece of hardware you can use to apply an internet filter to any device connected to the internet in your house. The circle filter acts as a bridge between your internet devices and your wifi router/modem. The filter uses an app to control the level of filtering and the devices that are filtered. Every device that connects to your wifi router is filtered with the default settings. You can then add a custome filter for each device. Circle can now filter both routers frequency ranges, 2.4 and 5 Ghz.


Setting up the Circle filter was easy.  First you downloaded the app and then you plug in the circle to power with the cable provided.  You do have to set up a circle account.  You are sent a special code to your phone that you plan on using to manage the filters.  Circle will automaticallyrecognize internet devices connected to your wifi network.  Some devices may take a day to recognize if you do not use them all the time.  Any device connected to the wifi network uses the default filter settings.  If you want to customize a filter for a specific device you create a new profile.

You can assign one or all of your internet devices to the profile you setup.

The app allows you to see how much time each device is using the internet and what the device is using.

  • Software Requirements: iOS 9 or later or Android Jelly Bean or later
  • Set Time Limits: Create daily time limits on apps and popular sites like Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and YouTube.
  • Filter Content: Set individual filter levels by age (Pre-K, Kid, Teen, and Adult) for each member of your family.
  • Usage at a Glance: See where your kids spend the most time online by app and category.
  • Pause the Internet: Pause the Internet for a single family member or the whole family with a single tap.

Circle with Disney – Parental Controls and Filters for your Family’s Wireless Device

Note:  This post may contain affiliate links. This Post is my opinion.  I didn’t get paid to review this device.  I bought the circle with my own money.
What do you think? Have you used Circle before? Let me know what you think in the comment section below.

Best iOS 11 Feature for Educators

The iPad/iPhone screen capture feature is one of my favorites.  Its easy to take take a screen shot on the iPhone or iPad by pressing the home and power buttons at the same time. (Screen capture on the iPhoneX is a little differentOn the iphoneX you press Volume Up button and Power button together at the same time to screen capture.)

What the new iOS 11 screen capture lets you do:

Now with iOS11 you can actually do something more than just save the screen capture to your photos.  You can:

  • Draw on the captured image: You can use different types of markers and different colors to draw.  You can even use shapes, text or add a custom signature. Just start drawing on the screen image. To add a signature touch the + sign at the bottom right.
  • Crop the image: This allows you to cut off parts of the screen you don’t want. I sometimes do this before I txt a screen capture so it doesn’t take up as much memory. To crop the image just drag any of the blue frame corners to the size you want.
  • You can also magnifying a section of screen capture.

  • Send captured image to other apps: You can send the screen capture or edited screen capture to other apps or other people via txt or email. When you are ready just tap on the up arrow in a box at the bottom left.

Screen capture is not the only place you can use the new iOS 11 markup tools. You can also do the same mark ups on pdf files in iBooks. Just click on the picture that looks like a pencil at the top of the screen.

What are your favorite uses of the screen capture tool?

How to create great video memories on the iPhone and iPad

While I’d like to think someday I’ll be a great videographer that probably won’t happen anytime soon. Thankfully the memories section in the iOS photos app has you covered. Apart from a few quirks, the memories app will help you quickly put together your favorite memories into a nice video.  You can quickly create awesome movies to preserve your memories using just the iOS photos app. Here is a quick guide on using the photos app to make a video memory.

How to get to the memories app

  1. Open the photos app
  2. At the bottom select the second icon labeled memories
  3. There will be several memory videos already created.

How to customize

You have to play the memory video first before you can customize or edit the Memories movie.  If the video looks exactly like you want and the music is to your liking, then you can go on to the steps below to preserve this Memories video.  Otherwise you can edit the the video by selecting the “Edit” link in the upper right hand corner.

(in iOS 10 it will be a small icon with lines on the bottom right) .The easiest edits are to change the Mood of the music and change the length of the video as shown above.  You can set the movie length to short, medium, or long.  You can also change the music to dreamy, sentimental, gentle, chill, happy, uplifting, epic, club, or extreme.  The photos Memories app will automatically update the movie with your new choice.

Choose more pictures or videos

The app does a pretty good job choosing pictures, but what happens if you have a picture in your Memory video that you don’t want? You can choose not to include some of the pictures or videos in the memories video.  You can also add more pictures and videos to your Memories movie. 

Select the Photos & Videos to edit what pictures are used in the Memories video.  You can scroll along the bottom to see all the pictures included in your Memories video.  Tap on the picture or video you want to edit.  You can change the length of the video clip or you can remove the picture or video by putting it in the trash.  (It does not delete the picture on your iPhone or iPad)


You can also add more pictures by pressing the + sign at the bottom left.

Edit title and song choice

Now that you have the pictures you want you can edit the title and song.  You can either choose from Apples song Soundtracks or music you have saved from iTunes on your iPhone or iPad.

How to save and export video memories

Since the Memories movies are always changing you need to preserve your favorite memories so they won’t get changed or removed.  To preserve the memory movie scroll to the bottom of all the pictures and then select “Add to Memories”.


Having finalized the memories video I highly recommend you export and save your video. Ideally you would think the logical export option would be iMovie but alas I was dearly disappointed. You can indeed export to iMovie but there is little you can do since the whole memory is exported as a video. To save your Memories movie file press the box with the up arrow at the bottom of the screen where you edit the Memories movie.

You now have several options on how you want to export your Memories video.

P.S. Memory movies only work on your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Apple TV. You won’t see Memory movies on your Mac (for now).