Arizona Mama

Monday, July 28, 2014

Back to School Event: Speekee Spanish for Kids Online Review & Giveaway

     Knowing a second language is a wonderful advantage.  At the high school I teach at we have about 60 different languages that are represented on campus through students.  I think that is amazing how many languages can be in one school.  That also means all of those students have to also know English.  But what about the English speaking students?  How do they communicate with their peers?  I have worked with children and families that speak other languages then me, mainly Spanish, but a few others.  It is not always easy to communicate.  I always wished I knew more Spanish.  Sure I have taking some classes and I have had co-workers help me to learn some, but it is not fluent at all.  I have heard before that the best time to learn a new language is before the age of 8.  Something about the way a person produces different sounds are set by age 8.  So after age 8 it becomes more difficult to make the different sounds that may be in another language.  That is why I am happy that Jayden's school provides Spanish instruction daily.  He has an actual Spanish teacher that comes in his classroom daily and teaches, right now some basic Spanish.  He is enjoying learning a new language, but of course it is not easy.  When I saw that there is an online program for kids to help teach them Spanish I thought that would be a good addition to what he is already doing.

    Speekee is an online Spanish program for kids.  Speekee was developed in 2006 and has worked to build their reputation as a quality Spanish learning site ever since.  The Speekee Spanish Challenge is the most comprehensive Spanish learning program for children online.  Speekee is designed for children between the ages of 2 and 11.  Speekee has some free Spanish speaking videos, but if you sign up for the paid version you get access to many more videos.

     Once I got Jayden set up to use the program I sat with him as he logged in.  It was confusing at first to figure out what to do.  There is just a log in/ sign up box, but no other information on the home page.  Once we got in there were lots of videos that you can watch.  Across the top of the screen there is a list of others that are online "playing" also.  Jayden was turned off pretty quickly.  I asked him to give it a chance.  He tried watching another video.  He usually is one to jump in and try the words, but he really didn't seem excited.  It might have been because he really wanted to try another program or because it just was not something that he was very interested in.  The screen itself is overwhelming with the video in the middle along with a bunch of screen names where children have either given the video a thumbs up or a thumbs down.  Along the bottom there is a line of other videos that you can watch.  The videos are completely in Spanish, but I think they repeat the words so much you figure out what they are saying.  So that is good, although there are some words that are lost in there.  For children under 7 there is what is called a fasttrack learning guide.  It tells you which videos they should watch in what order.  It also has some suggested activities that you can do at home and flashcards you can print out.  But I wish they were things that could be used online instead of printed out.

     The next time I had Jayden try out the program he was a little more interested.  He sat and watched a few videos.  He even began repeating some of the words.  He was excited that he already knew a few words from his Spanish class.  Evan became interested too and kept going over to see what Jayden was watching.  At one point Jayden got up and Evan took over the chair.  He didn't really know what he was watching, but he cheered as the video ended.  In the help it says there are games to play we could not find them.  All we found was lots of videos.  Maybe we need to watch the videos and the game is at the end, I don't know, but none of the videos we watched had games at the end.  The first time we watched this Jayden was getting distracted and really didn't want to watch.  The next time it went a little better.  I really wanted Jayden to enjoy this site and boost his Spanish so when he returns to school in a couple weeks he is ready for Spanish class.  I will continue to encourage him to try watching the videos and possibly learn a little Spanish,  I am hoping as he warms up to it he will gain more knowledge of the Spanish language.  I think the site could be a little more user friendly.  I'd love to see games that can be played as they learn.  Maybe an actual icon on the home page to show the games.

Win it: One (1) Arizona Mama reader will win a 3 month membership to Speekee Online

Enter in the Giveaway Tools form below! This giveaway will be open until 8/5 at 11:59PM (MST).  Open to US.  

Thank you to Speekee for sponsoring the review & giveaway

 I was provided the above mentioned products in order to provide a review. I was not compensated in any way. All thoughts and opinions are my own and not influenced. disclosure

Sunday, July 27, 2014

The Beachin' Event #Giveaway #BeachinEvent Value: $800+

I did not receive any product for this post, nor was I compensated.  

It is Summer 

And It is time for The Beachin' Event!!

     Arizona MamaAndersons Angels, Joy Of Momma Joyner and The More The Merrier love the Summer Season! To celebrate, we have teamed up with an awesome group of bloggers and wonderful sponsors to bring you great products that anyone would need for a great beach trip or beach themed party! 
ONE WINNER will walk away with this whole prize package worth over $800!

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Urbini Omni 3 in 1 Travel System #Sponsored #MC

“I participated in a campaign on behalf of Mom Central Consulting (#MC) for Urbini. I received a product sample to facilitate my review and as a thank you for participating.”

     There are so many great stroller systems for moms and babies.  I know when I was first shopping when I had Jayden there was a lot to look through, but to be honest they were all the same.  Then I had Evan and there was so much more out there.  I love all the great selections that are available for parents now.  It can be very overwhelming to look at everything and figure out what options are best for you.  Recently I was able to try out the Urbini Omni 3 in 1 Travel System.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Rest In Peace Wallace

     If you grew up in Arizona anywhere between 1954 to 1989 you know who Wallace and Ladmo are.  The Wallace and Ladmo show was one of my favorite shows growing up.  The show was only here in Arizona, well there were a few boarder cities that were able to get the show and I guess they did try it out in other cities, but mostly just here.  It was a fun show with silly skits between the cartoons.  And one of my favorite things they handed out Ladmo bags.  I wanted one of those bags so bad.  The funny thing is my mom actually got to be on the show a few times when she was a kid and once even got a Ladmo bag.  Her girl scout troop leader worked on the show or her husband did or something.  So her girl scout troop was invited a few times. 

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Back to School Immunizations at Walgreens Get a Shot, Give a Shot #GiveaShot #CollectiveBias

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone.

     I don't really think there are very many, if any kids that like to get shots.  I know when I was a kid I hated them.  Not only did I need the typical immunizations, but I had to get weekly allergy shots.  I had no choice but to get these shots for months.  I found different ways to cope with getting shots.  The way I best dealt with them was by counting.  I would try to count really fast and race the nurse.  This helped me to fear the shots less.  I know that often it is hard for children to understand why anyone would need to poke them and make them hurt.  I have used this story and method to help with my own boys and even children in my preschool classes previously.  Recently I took my boys into their doctor for their check ups and immunizations.  My oldest tried to use my trick, it helped a little until he felt the needle.  But maybe next time.  Lucky for him he doesn't need many more immunizations.  But at least now I know he is ready to start 1st grade with up to date vaccines.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

{Never} Wordless Wednesday ~ Brothers

     I still can not believe that my baby is almost 2 years old.  My mom told me the other day that I need to stop calling him baby, but I can't help it.  He is my baby.  Anyway, he is almost 2 and my big baby is already 6 and starting 1st grade soon.  Where does the time go.  This is an old picture that I had on my phone.  I love the way they are looking at each other.  Evan still looks at Jayden like this.  He wants to be just like Jayden and do everything he does.  The admiration is so adorable, even is Jayden doesn't think so all the time!

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Little Tikes Sort 'n Store Primary Colors Toy Chest Review & Giveaway

     Toys in our house seem to multiple like crazy.  The boys have so much stuff.  As I have tried to go through and organize their things I realized that Evan really needed something to hold his toys in.  He had this small bin with everything flowing out.  No wonder his things were everywhere.  When Little Tikes offered the Sort 'n Store Primary Colors Toy Chest I of course said yes and was excited to finally have a place for Evan's toys.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Planes: Fire & Resuce in Theaters TODAY!!

I was provided the opportunity to see the below mentioned movie duirng a special screening to provide a review

     Jayden and I were recently invited to a 3D screening of Disney's newest movie Planes: Fire & Rescue.  This movie is the excited sequel to the Disney Planes.  We were both excited to see what happens to Dusty in this show.  And it was great to have a date night with my oldest boy.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Learning Resources Magnetic Letter Construction Review & Giveaway

 I was provided the below mentioned products in order to provide a review
Magnetic Letter Construction
     During the summer it is a little more difficult to keep up with education and learning.  I know from my experience this year with Jayden he keeps telling me its summer and he doesn't have any homework.  But I worry about him losing some of his learning from Kindergarten this year.  I don't want him to start back to school and be behind.  So I try to find ways to integrate learning in many activities.  His teacher sent me some activity sheets for math and Spanish.  She also sent some books and a list of books that he can read.  I love that she gave me some things to start with.  Unfortunately Jayden is not one to jump on the idea of doing Homework and especially reading.  He just does not feel successful when he reads.  He is doing well, but being the perfectionist he can be means that if it is not perfect he just doesn't want to do it.  So I am trying to find fun and interesting ways to continue the learning.  As always I look to one of my favorite stores Learning Resources for some ideas.  Since Jayden had a little trouble with completing his 70 phonograms by the end of the year I figured something around letters and sounds would be great to work on.  I received the Magnetic Letter Construction to review.

For Nursing Mamas: Milky 6 Day Supply #Giveaway

Need Brands and Mommy By Nurture
Want you to win a 6 day supply of Milky
     Are you a nursing mama?  Breastfeeding is natural, but its not always easy.  Every nursing mama can use some help and supply is often a common concern.  Check out Milky!  this is a lactation enhancement supplement that can help with your supply.