Home School Help

What should your child be learning?

Whether your child is in Early Years Education or preparing for their Leaving certificate exams, you will find a complete breakdown of their Curriculum as the National Council for Curriculum and Assessment (NCCA) website www.curriculumonline.ie

 

Reading – Phonics, Literacy fun & more

We know there wasn’t much time to stock up on books when the school & library closures were announced but there are ebook options available online. Whilst we have our own ebook collection through Borrowbox, many of the educational publishers are offering free access to ebooks, both fiction & non-fiction. Don’t forget that audiobooks can also be a great way to expose children to new vocabulary. Likewise, they can help children learn about reading pace & expression, foster imagination & encourage visualization – skills linked to improved comprehension.

Borrowbox is the eBook & eAudiobook service provided by Monaghan County Libraries & Libraries Ireland. There are thousands of titles available in both formats and they are classified into Adult, young Adult & Children’s titles. the Borrowbox App can be downloaded to any Apple or Android device. The Apple version offers a specific Dyslexia friendly font. Borrowbox can also be used on a Desktop/Laptop however you will be prompted to download ‘Adobe Digital editions’ software in order to read the ebooks on your Desktop/Laptop. We have created a step by step video to guide you through this process. Audiobooks can be downloaded as MP3 files.
You may already be familiar with the Oxford reading tree series of books (Biff, Chip & Kipper). The Oxford Owl Website is a very useful resource offering free access to graded eBooks, both fiction and non-fiction as well as activity sheets for Maths and English. It has a simple to navigate layout based on age ranges and offers lots of simple tips for Parents. They also have a great You Tube channel full of authors reading stories, ideas for teaching Math etc. You will need to register your details in order to have access to the ebook content but there is no other cost unless you decide to purchase some of the printed books for delivery. This is one of the best websites overall for Primary school children.
CJ Fallon, one of Ireland’s longest established and most respected educational publishers, has been leading the way in Primary and Post Primary publishing since 1895. They are committed to providing Irish teachers with the highest quality teaching resources in print and digital. In light of the School Closures they have made ebook versions of their complete collection for both Primary & post Primary available free of charge.
Scoilnet have made World Book Online available for use by everyone in the Republic of Ireland. You will find a range of activities, games & lessons on this site but be sure to click in to view the collection of ebooks including fiction, Non-Fiction and early Readers.
Scholastic is a well known educational publisher. They have created a 20 day Home school programme which includes Fiction & Non-Fiction reading and associated tasks such as Art & Crafts, virtual tours etc. This is primarily based on the American Curriculum but a lot of the content is quite general and can be studied by children across the globe.
Teach Your Monster to Read is an award-winning phonics and reading game that’s helped millions of children learn to read. Children learn through play as they create a monster and take it on a magical journey over three extensive games – meeting a host of colorful characters along the way and improving their reading skills as they progress. The Children play with Phonics and Tricky Words to progress through levels. The desktop version of this game is free however there may be a charge if using the App version.
TTRS Touch-Type Read and Spell is a multi-sensory self-paced course that teaches Typing, reading and Spelling.  It is particularly useful for those with Dyslexia, DCD/Dyspraxia, ASD, ADHD, or working memory and processing weaknesses. This is because it uses repetition and real words right from the start. There are no “finger-muddling” key combinations and it has an easy-to-use settings panel.  However it can be used by anyone as a Touch-Type course.   TTRS is a subscription based service however Monaghan County Libraries have taken out a subscription on behalf of our users and are providing free access to the course.  Each user needs a unique log-in so please contact kmccague@monaghancoco.ie or your local branch of Monaghan County Libraries to register for the TTRS course.
Resource Packs
Twinkl are offering free School closure packs to everybody. Each pack contains English, maths, Gaeilge, history, geography, science, arts and STEM activities to keep all your children busy during the schools’ closure. Packs have been designed for Early Years learning as well as each Primary School class. ***Please note that Twinkl is usually a Subscription based website so many of the other resources aren’t available to those visiting for the school closure packs.
Special Education Resources
The National Council for Special Education is providing online resources for children with Special Educational Needs who are at home as a result of the schools’ closure.
They have collated a range of activities which have been developed by Occupational Therapists and Speech and Language Therapists. They are continually adding to the website so it’s worth checking in on this website regularly.
Stages Learning specialize in learning support material and are offering a sampling of lessons from Stages Learning Materials’ Language Builder ARIS curriculum. The lessons and supporting materials are 100% free to families. They recognize that these are unsettling times, and even more difficult for families whose children have special learning needs and hope by opening access to the ARIS curriculum, we can help alleviate some anxieties in the short term.  When you open the webpage, lessons are listed down the right hand side of the page and can be viewed and downloaded individually as required.
Explore the world’s Museums & Galleries from your Kitchen table
Discover artworks, collections and stories from all around the world in a new way. Explore cultural treasures in extraordinary detail!
Google Arts & Culture is an online platform through which the public can virtually visit international museums, including the Tate Gallery, London; the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York City; and the Uffizi, Florence.The digital platform utilizes high-resolution image technology and enables users to virtually tour partner museums’ galleries, explore physical and contextual information about artworks, and compile their own virtual collection. The “walk-through” feature of the project uses Google’s Street View technology.It’s a wonderful resource for both adults & children!  We particularly like the Harry Potter exhibition….
Science & Nature
Science Foundation Ireland have  a range of classroom activities which have been divided into the various sub headings of Energy & Forces, Environmental Awareness, Living Things, Materials & Space.  Whilst they have been devised as classroom activities you will probably find that you have most of the resources required at home.  The activities are very detailed and the science is explained in very simple terms.
National Geographic Kids is a treasure trove of educational information. Parents can use the games, videos, and other resources to teach kids about animals, other countries, science, and related topics. You will be asked to register an email address before being allowed to download PDF activities but apart from that from that there is a huge amount of high quality content in bitesize chunks for children with the shortest of attention spans!
STEM.org has a simple mission – to improve lives through a world-leading science, technology, engineering and mathematics education.
Subject experts have put together a selection of comprehensive resources for both Primary and Secondary- all of which are completely free for everyone to access. Each resource contains teachers notes and the activity sheets to complete the excercise. Subject experts are also available from 8.30am to 4.30pm on weekdays via webchat if you need some additional guidance. They are working on creating ready made lesson ideas as result of the school closures with a promise to add new content and ideas every week.
Maths
Maths is Fun LogoWhilst Mathisfun.com may not be the flashiest around, it explains Maths in simple steps with visual aids.  It covers a wide range of areas from the basic addition, subtraction, multiplication and division of numbers to the more difficult concepts of Algebra and Geometry.  You can also play Maths based games & complete puzzles or download worksheets.  There is no subscription or requirement to create a free account.  Simply click in to the subject areas and explore!
Top Marks has a range of Maths Learning games based on your child’s age.  We have linked directly to the Maths Learning Zone but you may want to explore some of the other resources on the site which cover a whole range of subjects.   A word of caution though…. there are lots of colourful adverts at the top and sides of the webpage which will lead you to subscription based sites.
Geography
If you want to know about what the EU does, how it all started and how it works, or if you want to debate EU policies more in details, you’ll find plenty of inspiration here. Take a trip back in time to discover important moments in history, inventions, major events in sport and society and more… many of which made the EU what it is today. Each of the 27 EU countries has its own flag. See if you can match the pairs by turning over the cards. Learn what the colours in each flag mean. Try these fun interactive games and explore Europe together! If you would like additional information be sure to check out the EDIC Centre in Clones
Digital creativity
Coding can be a great way for children to learn Problem Solving Skills, Computational thinking and Maths in a creative way. Scratch Coding was developed by MIT and is available to use FREE of charge. There is an online version or an offiline version which can be downloaded to your device. Check out these simple tutorials to get started.
Tinkercad is a free, online 3D modeling program that runs in a web browser, known for its simplicity and ease of use. Since it became available in 2011 it has become a popular platform for creating models for 3D printing. In order to use Tinkercad you will have to create a free account. We would recommend that an adult creates the account for use. Each design is saved to the account and they can be altered and tweaked at any stage. Once the Libraries are back open to the public you will be able to print their design using on eof our 3D Printers in Clones, Monaghan or Carrickamcross Libraries.