Like most home educators, I spend a lot of time looking for educational resources on the internet, and I’m always interested in finding out about websites that others use.
I have been given a subscription to a new (newish? new to me anyway….) educational website to try out and review, and I have enjoyed exploring the resources. I have had a few technical problems, as my rather elderly laptop does not seem to be able to print anything at all from the website, and I have had to rely on Suburban Dad’s superior laptop when he is around, which is not much at the moment. Anyway, he has printed a few resources which we have tried and enjoyed, so I thought I should get on and write this instead of hoping we will have time to explore it further. I think the problems may possibly be because the files are unusually large (according to Suburban Dad) and I have passed on this helpful (?) information to them, so maybe they will be able to change the format.
Initially I found the website a little confusing to navigate, but I have got used to it and I really like the resources. The thing we have used most is very simple. I have printed some number tracks for Rabbit and she stuck them on strips of card and enjoys using them to practise counting forwards and backwards. I also use them to ask her questions like “What is one more than 5?”, “What is one less than 9?” and so on.
I have tried out some worksheets on homophones with Owl and Monkey. They are clear and simple, and the children did the first one very happily which involved filling in missing words in sentences. They struggled with the second one as they were supposed to write two sentences on two short lines for each of the words and they just couldn’t fit them in so they had to make their interesting sentences shorter which was a shame. However, one of the great features of Twinkl is that users can suggest changes to resources and also add their own. Below each one, there is a message which reads “Have you got some new ideas for this resource? Or is there a problem that you’ve spotted?” (I love this – it’s so polite!) and a button which says “Suggest a change.”
Today I was planning to use a game about telling the time but I thought I would laminate it first. My problems with technology continued as one of the pages jammed in the laminator and of course I couldn’t just go and print another one out. Sigh. Anyway, IT support (otherwise known as Suburban Dad) is on the case, and I should be able to play it with them tomorrow. We have also printed out clock fans (similar to number fans, where you ask a question and the children have to hold up the fan with the right answer) and I’ve found a lovely character description worksheet as well.
The website also has book lists for a variety of topics and users can add to those as well. I think that is a very good way of sharing ideas, and I have enjoyed browsing and looking for inspiration. The section on displays is a good place to look for ideas for Art, and I will certainly be trying some of them out.
Overall, I would say that despite my technical difficulties (which won’t affect you if you have a decent laptop) twinkl is a really useful website to add to the range of resources that is available on the net for teachers and home educators, and I would certainly recommend it.