**New version of My Parent Plan coming out May 30 2013 while I will be at the Book Expo of America in New York City. Please check back May 30 for info on the UPDATED VERSION!
While I’m known today as “TechMam ...
On Nov. 7, I was thrilled to speak at a KidTech Meetup organized and moderated by Chandini Ammineni , Co-Founder of Activity Hero, to discuss how Kid Tech startups can get in front of their target audience. Speakers included @iRewardChart, ...
On Nov 27, I was excited to participate in the Palo Alto Tech Using Educators (PATUE) weekly edtech conference series. The organizer of this discussion was Sam Patterson (@LearningsLiving). His website, “Paperless Classroom”, is ...
At the recent launch of Office 365 Home Premium in New York City’s Bryant Park, I had the opportunity to experience the new features of Office while talking to some very exciting people (keep reading to find out who!). The Microsoft ...
I was one of the lucky ones. As a Senior Manager at a top consulting firm with a 4 year-old son and twins on the way, I was offered options. The firm was very serious about providing a family friendly workplace, so I could have taken mater ...
This has been a busy time for the Women’s Movement. Today happens to be International Women’s Day 2013 which has “thousands of events are held throughout the world to inspire women and celebrate achievements“. The d ...
I was lucky to be invited many years ago on a magic bus ride to CES, which was the first time I had a fun adventure with the team from Parnassus Group (Steve Broback, Jason Preston and more). Over the years they always had the pulse of soci ...
**I have doing research on educational environments for my own kids and found out about Six Seconds.org. Their about page explained “Through 15 years of global experience and extensive research, we’ve found that the scientifically-bas ...
With my busy life as a working mom, I am always on the move. This requires my technology to be flexible, fit my lifestyle and be available for the kids especially when it’s homework time. Finding the right technology tools c ...
Our busy family of five keeps organized as long as our schedule is managed and under control. A messy schedule results in a messy family life. I use technology to create a workflow and make sure everyone understands their res ...
As my 9 year olds become more interested in sharing media with family and friends, I have started to look into family friendly social platforms that are appropriate for 9 year olds. Just recently I received a brief demo of the family centric social platform called Kazaana (was called PixyKids). I appreciated the beautiful graphics and the ability for everyone to create their own space – and then share with family and friends. But most of all, I appreciated that the parental controls would allow me to approve every friend (or family) that my 9 year olds would invite into their space. Now that the Beta is live I can’t wait to take a test drive with my 9 year olds to learn more about Kazaana.
Below is the press release I received with more info:
Join Sarah Auerswald of Sarah & Sons / MomsLA and me (Beth Blecherman of TechMamas.com) as we discuss kids’ online habits with PixyKids, the soon to launch interactive and engaging social media platform where kids 6-12 can create, share, learn, and have fun through their personalized digital space. We’ll be on Twitter Thursday, April 26, 2012 at 10am PST with Hashtag #PixyKids – and we’ll also be live at the Digital Kids conference taking place in Pasadena.
I always enjoy when I get to blog about something that is already popular in my house. A few weeks ago, I took my son to the bookstore to see if Book 10 of the 39 Clues series was out yet. He had already read all the other books in the series. The good news is he goes through books quickly. The bad news I am constantly looking for new series for my son to read. I was excited when my son started reading 39 Clues because it was published by Scholastic. I did not see Book 10 at the bookstore so I checked online for the release date (August 31, 2010).
The day after a trip to our local bookstore with my son, I received an email about the 39 Clues Blog Tour, asking if I wanted to join in the fun. Of course I said YES! The Blog Tour is a 39 Day Countdown to book #10 and I am the first stop (see a full listing of Blog Tour stops below).
My stop is for 39 Clues Book 1. Here is an exclusive video from Book #1 Author, Rick Riordan:
Sadly, my son will still have to wait for Book 10 to come out. But – the good news is that I am doing a giveaway to my readers to share the adventure love:
GIVEAWAY: One winner will receive the (one) complete 39 Clues book series (PLUS book #1 will be autographed by Rick Riordan).
Today I received this press release that announced Disney is going Digital in yet another away with Disney Digital Books. I will be finding out more details and will add them to this post:
“Disney Digital Books (www.disneydigitalbooks.com) officially launched this morning. This vast library is Disney’s first-ever collection of digital children’s books – and the browser-based service is PC- and Mac-compatible, and does not require a download.
The new portal is the brainchild of a team of young, tech-savvy, creative folks at Disney Publishing Worldwide (the world’s largest publisher of children’s books and magazines), which has been around since 1930.
Over 500 Disney picture and storybooks will come to life with animated illustrations and authentic character voices. Classics include more than 60 Winnie the Pooh books and such popular titles as Mickey Mouse, Toy Story, Disney Princess, Cars, and Hannah Montana.
Key features include:
* An age-appropriate dictionary that lets children click on any word to hear it read aloud;
* Reading certificates to encourage readers;
* A “Story-Builder” feature so kids can create their own stories;
* Books are separated into three reading levels: (1) for beginner readers and a companion, (2) for independent readers, and (3) for readers ready for chapter books;
Monthly subscriptions are only $8.95 – and annual and gift subscriptions are available as well. A free trial of the service is available today.”
This is a great time to teach kids about the election process. Even better – TAKE THEM WITH YOU TO VOTE!
Moms will be getting their news from multiple news sources. But here are some interesting sites:
The Motherhood has a circle where moms call in the vote if you want to share your story.
I will be following the election online and on Twitter (CBS News will be providing breaking news, news updates and state-by-state results on Twitter at http://twitter.com/cbsnews throughout Election Day and into the night) and their online website. On the CBS News with Katie Couric website, I found a video called "Campaign ’08 Inspires Kids".
When I received the Imagination Mover’s press kit (including the fact sheet and bios for Scott Durbin, Rich Collins, Dave Poche and Scott ‘Smitty’ Smith) in the mail from Disney, I decided to wait until all my kids (6 year old twins boys and a 9 year old boy) were home at the same time to play the music.
Well, they all liked it – and that is not easy!
What’s In The Fridge pretty much sums up what it is like having three Hungary boys – they are always heading to the fridge. Clean My Room (pick it up, pick it up NOW) is the song I decided to play to remind my boys that their rooms need a’cleanin. I think that will be a more effective way then screaming "clean your room" like I usually do. The medicine song can be used when the kids are sick.
"Mover Music" may be one of my favorites and inspired me to exercise also (I secretly played that over and over again while the kids were at school)!
"Are competent with technology, but notexpert searchers"
"They like to cut-and-paste" (plagiarism is a serious issue)
"They prefer visual information over text"
"They multitask all the time"
"Teachers, relatives, and textbooks are consistently valued above the Internet"
While I do agree with some of the points above, what is all this fuss about kids not being expert searches? So I decided to put my 9 year old to the test…
I asked him to pretend he was doing a report on a specific type of lizard, where would he search online?
He went to Google then typed "lizard". Next he looked at the links – the first was Wikipedia and he went past it to the link called "Kids Konnect – Lizards". He asked me what type of lizard and I said a "horned lizard". Then he choose the section on "horned lizards" which had a page full of information. From the url, it seemed to have come from the University of Texas. But that made me wonder, forget about being a good searcher – how do we know if the websites have correct information? From my unscientific test of one, it seems my 9 year was fine at using a search engine – but the information at the other end that seems to be the issue (instead of the information skills of children)…
So I decided to perform the same test on the Scholastic Children’s Encyclopedia to see if just using a text book can be quicker then some online searches… We tried to search for "Lizard" under "L", but it was not there. So we went to the index and found "Lizard" under "R" for "reptile". In the reptile section, there was great information on lizards – but nothing on "horned" lizards. I know that this encyclopedia is focused for children of a specific age – and is only one book. Maybe a set of encyclopedias would of had that information…. But – it was still faster to use a search engine and my son did just fine..
There are some websites that offer a safer or more direct experience for children to use a search engine:
Glubble states they offer "trusted surfing for children under 12 years of age enables
families to be sure they only see the best of the web they choose to
Kid Konnect states that they are a "safe internet gateway for kids".
Yahoo Kids is a great gateway for kids to not only perform searches but find links to jokes, movies, music and make ecards.
And it was in the Yahoo Kids site that we had the best search engine result. When we typed "horned lizard" in the search bar of the Yahoo Kids site, it had many relevant link results. One was a dictionary, that when clicked through provided us with one paragraph with all the info we needed on the horned lizard… All of this is something my son did while on the site.
So, in the end it seems kids can be expert searchers if they start at the right website. Maybe alittle help from mom and dad to get them there is not a bad idea…
Enter email for TechMamas.com & My Parent Plan offers and eNews
SUBSCRIBE : Have blog posts sent to your email box
Beth Blecherman left her position as a Senior Manager at Deloitte for Family Management then decided to blog as a career 2.0. Her personal blog is TechMamas.com (@TechMama ), a platform to discuss technology, social media and her obsession with consumer electronics.
She is the Chief Technologist of Cool Mom Tech, the intersection between tech, parenting and style.
Beth Blecherman (a.k.a TechMama) has been choosen as one of the Nielson Power Mom 50 influencers, TIME.com 140 Best Twitter Feeds, Working Mother.com List of Most Powerful Moms in Social Media , PCMag twitter top 100 and Forbes Top 100 Website for Women.