Tag Archives: app

Hurray! 100 Day Duolingo Streak

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Hurray! 100 Day Duolingo Streak

Hello! One of my favorite hobbies is learning new languages and I practice French, Italian, Spanish, German, and Czech on Duolingo. Pre-pandemic, I was lucky if I could get a four or five day streak of practice going with a busy work and social schedule. Now, I am proud to say that I am on an over ONE HUNDRED day streak of practicing all five languages and I am honestly blown away by it. I also don’t plan on stopping any time soon!

For the past one hundred plus days, I have been dedicated to doing one to two lessons per language daily with Duo and it’s exciting for me because I can definitely tell that I have made great improvements. I consider myself to be quite fluent in French (I took it throughout high school and college) and I think I have made huge gains, as I can understand a majority of the French shows and movies I watch without subtitles now. I have found that my Spanish and Italian is much smoother and my vocabulary in both German and Czech has made good progress too.

I know people have talked about their hobbies to NO END during the COVID-19 pandemic but it is just so cool to me to notice substantial gains from just one hundred days of practicing for a half hour. Everything from work to social lives seems to be on a stand still right now with not much to look forward to. However, I look forward to working on my languages every day now so my skill set can continue to blossom.

Learning a different language opens up a whole new world. New friendships, new skills, new entertainment, new dream locations to travel to. Duolingo is a free app and if you find yourself overwhelmed by all of the free time we now have, then I highly recommend giving it a download. You can even treat yourself to Duolingo Plus, which will give you unlimited hearts! Learning something new is exhilarating and incorporating Duolingo into your life could be just what you need to shake some blahs away until things get back to normal. ❤

Do you know a different language? How do you practice? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

4 Steps To More Success: Helping Your Children Learn From Home

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4 Steps To More Success: Helping Your Children Learn From Home

As a parent, tutoring is automatically an additional responsibility once your kids are school age. Whether you are helping with homework or teaching them how to do basic research, you are engaging in some form of tutoring. With the COVID-19 pandemic still a real threat, many parents have taken on tutoring their kids full-time to keep up with the schoolwork they may be missing. Other parents have decided to co-tutor with teachers online using the various available technologies. This is the best time for you to step up your game as a tutor so keep on reading for our tips to help you improve:

Incorporate technology:

Technology is driving education, and you must find ways to incorporate it into your teaching. Students of all ages now have access to at least a mobile phone or a laptop – even if it belongs to their parents. There are tons of apps out there that can help you to deliver any conceivable topic from history, science, math, and English tutoring, the choice is yours. You can use these apps for your professional development or you may be able to introduce these apps to your kids as a fun way to learn and explore the subject area.

Be adaptable:

No two students are the same, so you must be adaptable and quick to realize your child’s learning style. Find a method that he or she identifies with and use that to teach them to increase their participation. Some students prefer to know the subject matter and prepare before the actual class. Others learn best when the teaching is interlaced with some activities that improve their retention. Another thing to improve upon is speaking in terms that will be understood and always encouraging questions when things aren’t clear.

Be patient:

Patience is key to understanding your child and finding ways to make learning easier and more fun for them. While some students are quick to understand certain concepts, others are not. Do not get flustered or impatient. Instead, take your time to explain and break down the idea so that they can grasp it. Other students have problems with retention, and this is quite common. If you do have a student that struggles with information retention, employ the use of memory retention techniques such as mind maps and acronyms, which can be helpful in such a situation.

Seek your child’s feedback:

If your child is struggling, ask for their feedback on what you can do to make things easier. It could be that he or she is not learning in a style that best suits them. Ask them how they feel about your teaching style or approach to a topic when you are helping with homework. You can also ask them how you can make the lessons more exciting or beneficial to them. This will help you improve your teaching methods while giving your kids the opportunity to voice their feelings and have a hands on experience with their education.

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Pixabay Image

2020 has brought parents directly into the classroom with at home learning. Help them be successful with the tips above!

Featured Image By: Pixabay

5 Top Learning Apps For Kindergarten & Pre-School

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5 Top Learning Apps For Kindergarten & Pre-School

As a parent, you’ll want to help your kids with their education as much as you can. When you’re teaching them at home, it can be hard to know which resources are the best. There are many educational apps which can be used as learning aids at home. To get you started with a few of the best, try these five:

1. Teach Your Monster To Read

This fun-filled app is the perfect tool to teach your kids to read. It’s both simple to use and engaging. Teach Your Monster To Read was created based on the early phonics curriculum, so you can be sure that they are learning everything they need. It’s an award-winning game which takes your children on an exciting journey (with plenty of monster friends)! Kids get to match letters and sounds, blend, segment, master tricky words, and work towards making full sentences. The app is the perfect after school activity for a little extra learning!

2. Moose Math:

With the Moose Math app, your kids can learn all about geometry, sorting, subtraction, addition, and counting to 100. The activities make sure that learning about math is super fun! Your kids get to run their own juice shop, search the lost and found box, and meet plenty of cute and kooky characters. Your kids will just love the ‘pet bingo’ game and ‘paint pet’. Here they’ll learn plenty of skills, including:

  • Using algebraic thinking to solve word puzzles
  • Practice their pattern recognition skills
  • Recognize and identify shapes
  • Compare different lengths

3. Busy Shapes & Colors:

With the Busy Shapes & Colors app, learning colors and shapes has never been more fun. Here you’ll find plenty of cute penguin characters to entertain your children through the process! It’s a simple app to help little ones improve their fine motor skills. Each level brings a new challenge so your kids will never get bored! Further features of the app include four different play modes; the choice of fifteen languages; color and shape ‘makers’; multi-touch play and more!

4. Hungry Caterpillar Pre-School:

Based on the famous book by Eric Carle, this app is the perfect tool for preschoolers. The activities guide kids through math concepts, language, and literature too. Here your kids will learn about phonics and build their confidence over time. There are science topics, puzzles and reasoning, and plenty of fun songs!

5. ABCmouse:

ABCmouse is a fantastic learning program which covers music, art, reading and more. The app was designed for 2-8-year-olds, and is based on the pre-school and school curriculum. With so many fun activities your kids will have tons of options! Using the app, you’ll boost your child’s development across all their subjects, giving them a great head start.

All of these apps follow a pre-school and kindergarten curriculum. Choosing the right kindergarten is an important part of your child’s learning journey. If you’re looking for a top-quality kindergarten, be sure to check out jennys kindergarten and early learning. Ready, get set, and learn!

Featured Image By: Pexels

Duolingo Update

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Duolingo Update

Yo! It has been a while since I gave an update on my language learning festivities, so here we are. This past month, I have added Czech to my trifecta of languages that I have been working on with French, Spanish, and Italian. And, let me tell you, it has been about a bitch. I decided to start Czech because of my halfsies heritage with my mom being one hundred percent Czechoslovakian. And, I plan on starting German in another month or so as my dad is almost one hundred percent in his nationality.

Being fluent in French made Spanish and Italian fairly easy to work on, since the Romance languages are pretty similar. I also took Spanish from kindergarten to eighth grade and some of that (But not much!) is definitely coming back. Italian has proven to be more challenging than I thought it would be, but I finally think I am getting a better grip on it after over three months of working on it.

The real difficulty lies in Czech because it sounds SO different than any of the other languages that I am familiar with. None of the words in Czech sound anything like English, which is so helpful in my Romance languages because you can make an educated guess even if it sounds vaguely like something you have heard before. I went into Czech blind or, deaf, I should say because aside from a few random words I’ve heard from my mom and grandma, I’ve never even heard it spoken before.

But, Lil Red never backs down from a challenge and I plan to continue working hard on Czech as well as the other three languages in my arsenal. In the meantime, does anyone have any tips on learning a new language? Czech in specific? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Duolingo Progress

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Duolingo Progress

Hi! For those of you who don’t know, one of my favorite hobbies is learning new languages. I would say that I am fluent in French and, thanks to Duolingo, I have spent the past few months working on Spanish. I was going to just focus on those two languages for the time being but, then, I watched a fantastic film over the weekend called The Green Book and it was absolutely impossible to not start learning Italian afterwards!

Every day, I try to practice for at least thirty minutes between the three languages and it makes me feel so good. I love to learn and it feels awesome to gain a new skill as well as do something that makes me genuinely happy. I really do stand by the phrase that I loosely toss around on here that “knowledge is power”. Learning a new phrase in a language or a fact per day is empowering. You don’t have to be in school to continue your education and it makes it even better when you are teaching yourself.

I am so thankful for Duolingo, 1) because it’s completely free and 2) because it allows my skills to flourish. And, did I mention that it’s fun?! So much fun, that I think I will go practice my trifecta of languages now. 😀

Who else uses the Duolingo app? What languages are you learning? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

These Are My Confessions…

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These Are My Confessions…

Hiiiii everyone! I have to confess… after close to two months post break up with my most recent ex, I made a Tinder… and a Bumble, too. Lol, *Facepalm Emoji* But, damnit, I just couldn’t help it. All of my single lady friends encouraged me to make one, as they have one, as well, so I figured “why not”?

In a social media world, it can be difficult and even damn near impossible to meet someone the old fashioned way. And, for me, it feels even harder considering I am self employed. I have no coworkers and the people who I do work with have special needs so getting my flirt on while on the job is a NO, as I’m responsible for someone else at the time. It’s just not a good look.

At twenty-four, I’m over the going to the bar stage of my life. And, because my working week keeps me so busy, my weekends are normally spent recouping from that. So, how in the HECK do I meet someone?! Hence, I downloaded Tinder… and Bumble. -___-

I haven’t had a Tinder since I was nineteen and, I have to say, it is exactly what I remember it being. AKA, swiping through a bunch of pictures of guys holding up fish. Lolol, seriously! I’ve never seen so many fish pictures in my life. And, because I am anti-fishing, it’s always a no, no, no.

AND, if it’s not fish pictures, it’s pictures of a huge group of people. How am I supposed to figure out who you are if your profile picture is of your entire graduating college class?! No, no, no siree BOB. I thought that maybe Bumble would be a little different and I liked the idea that the girl had to contact the person who you matched with. But, it’s literally the exact same as Tinder.

In fact, I have seen so many of the same fish pictures on Bumble as I have on Tinder and I just can’t take it! Does anyone else notice this?! I feel like I’m taking crazy pills!! I’ll admit, that I have absolutely NO idea where I was going with this post, but I really felt like I needed to get all of that off of my chest, so thanks for listening! Lololol WOOF.

How do my single friends meet people? Who has had some success on any of the dating apps? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Featured Image By: Week Adjourned

Meditation Recommendations

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Meditation Recommendations

Hi everyone! Something that I really enjoy doing is going to a meditation class offered by my local library. The woman who runs it, Joann Xi, is the founder of the Center for Health, Happiness, and Chan. This organization promotes a mindful and contemplative lifestyle and teaches the art of meditation to those in the greater Akron area. During class this week, Joann gave us a paper listing some helpful books, apps, podcasts, and websites that she recommends and I thought that I would share it with all of you. And, if you are interested in seeing Joann in action, check out my blog post which features her YouTube videos. She’s amazing!

From Eastern Traditions:

Books:

  1. The Art of Living: Vipassana Meditation as Taught by S.N. Goenka by William Hart
  2. Peace is Every Step by Thich Nhat Hanh
  3. True Love by Thich Nhat Hanh
  4. Cutting Through Spiritual Materialism by Chogyam Trungpa
  5. Bringing Home the Dharma by Jack Kornfield
  6. The Wisdom of No Escape by Pema Chodron

Podcasts:

  1. Insight Hour Podcast with Joseph Goldstein
  2. Ram Dass Hear and Now
  3. Heart Wisdom Podcast with Jack Kornfield

Websites:

  1. https://www.secularbuddhism.org/
  2. https://www.lionsroar.com/

From Western Traditions:

Books:

  1. Invitation to Love by Thomas Keating
  2. Intimacy with God by Thomas Keating
  3. Contemplative Prayer by Thomas Merton
  4. The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz
  5. Fully Present by Susan L Smalley and Diana Winston
  6. Mindful Work by David Gelles

Audio Books:

  1. Going on Being by Mark Epstein
  2. Going to Pieces without Falling Apart by Mark Epstein

Podcasts:

  1. 10% Happier with Dan Harris

Apps:

  1. Headspace (Westernized version of eastern meditation practices)

YouTube:

  1. Zen Den
  2. Cosmic Kids

Websites:

  1. https://www.cac.org/
  2. https://www.couragerenewal.org

Integration of East/West:

Books:

  1. Living Zen Loving God by Ruben L.F. Habito
  2. The Mystic Heart by Wayne Teasdale
  3. The Wisdom of Insecurity by Alan Watts

I hope that some of these wonderful options to help introduce you to meditation or further your practices prove to be beneficial to those who need it. Once a skeptic, I truly believe in the power of meditation and the amazing work that Joann is doing, so please enjoy!

Who else participates in meditation? What are some ways that help you to relax? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Pacer Update (Finally!)

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Pacer Update (Finally!)

Hello everyone! It’s been a while since I updated you guys on my Pacer pedometer app progress and, honestly, that’s because there wasn’t much. This past month and a half has been a total doozy. I was so mentally and physically drained, and the last thing that I wanted to do was commit to walking 10,000 steps per day when I could have been laying on my sorry behind watching TV!!

But, that wasn’t really getting me anywhere and, as soon as the events that were taking place in my life that caused me a lot of anguish turned around, I was excited to pick up the Pacer again. This past week, I have been really dedicated to getting my 10K steps in at least four days of the week and I have blown that goal out of the water. It feels good to get myself moving again and although a lot of progress hasn’t been made, I’m back on the horse and I’m proud of that. Take a look at my stats:

  • Steps Taken: 1,364,282
  • Calories Burned: 33,311
  • Miles Walked: 445
  • Hours Active: 211
  • Days As A Pacer User: 177

I was also really pleased to see that I’ve been more active than sixty percent of the users on Pacer because, the last time I did an update, I was at a measly thirty percent. I doubled that! Things are looking up, and my exercise regimen is back in full swing, which makes things seem like they’re looking up even more! I feel really happy, and I can’t wait to get my 10,000 steps in today! 😀

Who else uses a pedometer app? How do you get back on the horse after a hiatus from working out? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Duolingo Progress (Finally!)

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Duolingo Progress (Finally!)

Hello!! So for a solid month I felt like I was completely slacking not only on Pacer, but on Duolingo, too. I was feeling super unmotivated and depressed and, damnit, I just didn’t feel like doing anything. But, now that I’m back to my normal, chipper, go getter self, it was time to get back on the horse and start making some progress again.

I’ve recently began working on my advanced French and beginner Spanish again and, I’ve got to tell you, it feels great. The mental exercise that I get from spending time with my languages daily makes me wonder why I ever stopped practicing in the first place, because I feel so good afterwards. In fact, it has motivated me to start practicing sign language again, which I took a hiatus from after having difficulty finding folks to practice with. Regardless of regular use or not, knowing a plethora of languages is an amazing skill to have, and I want to keep sharpening those skills on the daily.

I was halfway nervous to start practicing my languages again after a depression break, because I was worried that I had lost all of my knowledge in one short month. But, like riding a bike, I was able to pick up right where I left off and have since been enjoying every second of it. I’m proud that I didn’t let my anxiety about forgetting my skills get the best of me in regards to whether I should bother practicing again or not. And, even if I did forget anything, the worst that could happen is that I relearn something – and what’s the harm in that?

I’m getting back to feeling great mentally and physically after a rough past month and I am ready to continue making daily progress again just like in the good old days! 😀

Are you learning a new language right now? Who else utilizes Duolingo? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Pacer Progress (Or Lack Thereof)

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Pacer Progress (Or Lack Thereof)

Hello everyone and happy Thursday! This past month has been a total and complete shit show and, needless to say, my activity level has been pretty low. All of my motivation to make big gains on my pedometer app has essentially flown out the window, and I’ve been having a hard time peeling my depressed self off of the couch. So, my stats for the month are definitely not the best. 😦

  • Total Steps: 959,262
  • Calories Burned: 23,591
  • Hours Walked: 148
  • Miles Walked: 315

And, to make matters worse, my activity level dropped from being ninety percent more active than the people using Pacer to a whopping forty-three percent. Whomp freaking whomp.

Now that I realize how low I let my movement get during my depression stupor, I am SO ready to get back on the horse and keep going until I start making good progress again. It’s going to be difficult, because I’ve been feeling so sluggish lately. But, once I get started, it will go back to being easier to get my 10,000 steps in no time. So, here we go!

How do you get yourself back on the horse after a stint with depression? What motivates you? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah