Tuesday, December 31, 2013

PEOPLE'S CHOICE



Happy New Year! We look forward to watching the glow grow brighter in 2014 with all the new (and old) stories we can share together. Feel free to share them with your loved ones, friends, second cousins twice removed and anybody else you can think of at the moment. They can find us here on the blog, on our Facebook page, on Twitter, on our Pinterest board, and on iTunes.

Each member of the Night Light Stories household chose a 
favorite story for your listening pleasure. 

Enjoy!  


TUCKER'S CHOICE (age 8): 

Sled Ride: (6:06)
A little boy tells of his exciting sled ride down 
the hill while tryingto avoid a collision.
Free audio download: Sled Ride
Blog with activities: Sled Ride

MAGGIE'S CHOICE (age 6)

Lulu and Her Lavender Lion: (12:31)
A girl's journey through her memories with her imaginary friend.
Free audio download: Lulu and Her Lavender Lion
Blog with activities: Lulu and Her Lavender Lion

MR. CHRIS' CHOICE (age 39)

Agent Tissue Has an Issue: (14:21)
Agent Tissue is hot on the trail of a runaway nose that is hiding on the playground. Can his two new recruits help him catch the slippery culprit?
Free audio download: Agent Tissue Has an Issue
Blog with activities: Agent Tissue Has an Issue

MS. MEL'S CHOICE (age 36)

The Watermelon Seed: (10:18)
A little boy and his grandmother exchange letters describing the different changes he is seeing in his mom after she swallows a watermelon seed.
Free audio download: The Watermelon Seed
Blog with activities: The Watermelon Seed


If you had to choose a story, which one would it be? 
Share with us in the comments below or over at our Facebook page.

BRING ON 2014!

Sunday, December 29, 2013

LIGHTING THE WAY WITH WORDS

Click here to listen to: An Interview with a Zombie
A talk show host interviews a popular guest 
about his latest viral video.


It's that time of year when you often hear…"I'm not feeling very well." Viruses are spreading like wild fire. I know our house has been hit hard this winter break. All of us have had a turn dealing with the stomach bug. Many sleepless nights and sick bellies have left us wandering around the house feeling like zombiesHow do you keep your house healthy? Share with us in the comments below. 

As always, we look forward to watching the glow grow 
brighter with the many words we can share together.


Sunday, December 22, 2013

Christmas Tree I Spy


Look at the Christmas tree behind us in the picture below. 


























See if you can find the following items hidden in the tree:


1. Hulk action figure
2. Wolverine action figure
3. Superman
4. Minion
5. Four Voodoo Dolls
6. Buffalo Bills brick
7. Ironman
8. A Queen
9. Wonder Woman
10. Furby
11. Cadbury Mini eggs
12. Sock Monkey
13. Storm Trooper
14. T Rex
15. Bearded Dragon

We hope you all have a magical holiday season!

Warm Wishes,

Mr. Chris and Ms. Mel

Sunday, December 15, 2013

SPREADING HOLIDAY CHEER...AND STORIES


Hi All,

Grab the hot chocolate, marshmallows, paper, scissors and stapler! Join us in creating some 3D snowflakes to kick off the start of winter! Just follow the link below to the step-by-step video tutorial. Feel free to post your creations on our Facebook Page or send your very own flurry to us at nightlightstories@gmail.com

* * * * * * * * * * * * * *

How to Make a 3D Snowflake
* * * * * * * * * * * * * *

And while you're crafting a snowflake, enjoy listening to our collection of holiday stories! Below, you can find all the links to the audio as well as the blog posts with activities. Enjoy and Happy Holidays!


 Chilly's Christmas: (20:08)
An ornament is accidentally placed on the back of the Christmas
 tree and must learn to experience his favorite season using his 
other senses with a little help from his friends!
Free audio download: Chilly's Christmas 
Blog with activities: Chilly's Christmas


       Inky's Christmas: (21:24)
Inky, a nervous octopus, has to figure out a way to control his inking 
so he can attend all of his friends' holiday festivities.
Free audio download: Inky's Christmas
Blog with activities: Inky's Christmas


Red vs. Green: (22:21)
When a team of Christmas elves goes against a team of
St. Patrick's Day in the Holiday Hockey Winter Classic, who will win?
Free audio download: Red vs. Green
Blog with activities: Red vs. Green


Candy Cane Catastrophe (14:56)
Tragedy befalls a boy and his candy cane on a long car 
drive to Grandma's for the holidays.
Free audio download: Candy Cane Catastrophe
Blog with activities: Candy Cane Catastrophe


Sled Ride: (6:06)
A little boy tells of his exciting sled ride down the hill while 
trying to avoid a collision.
Free audio download: Sled Ride
Blog with activities: Sled Ride


Click here to listen to: Ohwhatfunitis (13:33)
Carol is way behind with her Christmas preparations when 
she starts to experience some strange symptoms. 
Can her family step up to help her out?




Saturday, December 7, 2013

A.T.TIPSCAST is a Finalist


Guess what?!?

Mr. Chris' solo podcast, A.T.TIPSCAST
was nominated for: 


Any votes you could give would 
be much appreciated!


Click on the VOTE button to vote!





Thursday, November 21, 2013

2013 EDUBLOG AWARDS


Hi All!
This is not our typical type of post on Night Light Stories, but it's an important one just the same. This post outlines my nominations for the 2013 Edublog Awards. As many of you know, Mr. Chris hosts his own podcast called the A.T.TIPSCAST. Just like other podcasters and educators, I watch his passion flow through the microphone when he is sharing educational tips and strategies. Through our podcasting, we've been lucky enough to meet other admirable educators sharing their own passions for their craft. 
The Edublog Awards provide a way to recognize these enormous efforts. Here are my nominations for the 2013 Edublog Awards:

Best educational use of audio / video / visual / podcast-

The A.T.TIPSCAST by Chris Bugaj- (www.attipscast.com) 
Winner of the 2012 Best Podcast Series, Chris continues to share practical technology tips while entertaining his audience. Each of his well produced episodes include current strategies that are being used in the educational field. Chris focuses on finding strategies and resources that are free or commonly found. 


Best Individual Blog -

Teaching All Students by Patrick Black – (www.teachingall.blogspot.com) Fresh ideas, multiple resources, and practical solutions for making instruction accessible to EVERY student. Recent blog posts include apps people should be checking out and how/why to use them. When it comes to implementing technology for every student, this blog is a MUST read.

Best Teacher Blog -

Speech Techie by Sean Sweeney - (www.speechtechie.com- The winner of the 2010 Best New Blog Edublog award has maintained its status as the premiere blog focusing on the topic of using technology in the practice of speech-language pathology. The beauty of the blog is that the strategies shared are for every educator, not just for those working as speech-language pathologists.

Best Group Blog -

Microsoft Partners-in-Learning Network Hot Topic Accessibility Blog by Dr. Cindy Feist and Dr. Tara Jeffs (http://www.pil-network.com/HotTopics/accessibility) - It’s sort of a simple concept. If you make your product accessible to everyone, anyone can use it. Likewise, if you make your lessons accessible to everyone, in benefits every learner. Weekly blog posts every Sunday from respected guest bloggers in the field of education present useful and practical perspectives on how to become more inclusive and to propagate learner variability.

Best New Blog -

Heck Awesome by Carrie Baughcum (http://carriebaughcum.com) – Although Heck Awesome wasn’t Carrie Baughcum’s first foray in to the world of blogging, it may be her best. Recently, Carrie, a middle school special education teacher, combined all of her various projects into on central hub called “Heck Awesome” where she blogs about the tools she is using, her “tech ninjas”, how she is growing professionally, and much, much more. It’s technology implementation with a “this is good for everyone” flavor, which of course, is awesome!

Best Ed Tech / Resource Sharing Blog -

Design Make Teach by Josh Ajima (http://designmaketeach.com) - Inspiring students to use their innate creativity to generate useful solutions is the future of education.  The Design Make Teach blog provides a philosophy, process, strategies and examples to spark the creator in any student. Josh shares practical, easy-to-replicate, activities spanning creations using low-tech, household items to fabricating materials using 3D printers. Make something! 

Best Open PD, Unconference, or Webinar Series -

VSTELive! Webinar Series (http://www.vste.org/index/learn/webinar) – VSTELive! webinars (Virginia Society for Technology in Education) are always engaging, informative, and cutting edge which gather insights from experts on contemporary topics in the world of educational technology. When you participate in a live VSTE webinar you are certain to have an enjoyable experience while learning new ways of thinking, learning, and doing. Keep ‘em coming VSTE!

Best Free Web Tool -

Read&Write for Google by Texthelp (http://www.texthelp.com/north-america/readwriteforgoogle) – Entering into the high school world of teaching this year, I cannot think of a better tool. My students have come to use R&W on a daily basis. Access to text-to-speech is crucial for students growing up using digital tools. Although the toolbar has lots of great features if you purchase it, the text-to-speech feature remains functional even after the 30 free trial runs out. If your students are using Google Docs, there’s no reason (or excuse) not to have it. If you’re not convinced yet, Chris did an entire A.T.TIPSCAST episode on how to use the tool that you can listen to for more information.
I hope you check out these fantastic resources and, if you agree with my choices, consider voting for these creations, projects, and initiatives to recognize the dedication of these individuals.
My nomination alone does not guarantee that these inspiring educators will be officially nominated. If you agree with my nominations, consider writing a blog post of your own featuring these terrific educational resources. They deserve your time! Find out more information about how to participate over at The Edublog Awards

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Episode 59 (Flashlight): An Interview with a Zombie



Click here to listen to: An Interview with a Zombie
A talk show host interviews a popular guest 
about his latest viral video.
Hi All,

We're back! And it feels so good. We've missed you all terribly! Summer flew by and the Fall, well, it felt like someone hit the fast forward button. Our daughter started Kindergarten this school year and I started back to work full-time. I'm teaching...wait for it...Conceptual Physics in a high school. We're just finding our groove with this new schedule. We hope you are finding the groove with yours. 

Our new story, An Interview With a Zombie, is just in time for Halloween. If you really like Halloween-ish stories, we have a few more. Funny, sweet, silly, spooky, or mysterious, we have all different genres just for you to try out. 


We'd also like to send out a special thanks to SodaStream for 
sponsoring this episode. "Set the bubbles free!"


VORACIOUS VOCABULARY
What did you say? A word of the day! 
In our story there are many juicy words that are fun to use and say.

gnaw: to bite or chew on
infectious: tending to spread from one to another
ravenous: extremely hungry
shamble: to walk or go awkwardly, shuffle

JUST ADD IMAGINATION!
Try these activities to keep your imagination glowing
after hearing the story.

1. The story features many 'plays on words' such as, "The alarm was so loud it could wake the dead." Make a list of all the other word play about zombies you heard in the story.  

2. With an adult, 'Zombify' yourself using the link or from an app. 'Make a Zombie' is a free iPhone and iPad app. Send your zombie-self to us at nightlightstories@gmail.com or post it on our Facebook Page. We'd love to see how you zombie it up for Halloween!

3. Interview members of your family about their lives. What do they do for a living? What are their favorite hobbies? Which food do they find the yummiest? If they could be a monster, which famous monster would they be?

4. We want to here you speak like a zombie. Record yourself speaking like a zombie using http://recordmp3.org or a similar voice recorder. Send us the link or the audio file so we can hear your creepy voices.


5. Listen to our three other stories that have a Fall-ish theme! Halloween is right around the corner! 

The Patchwork Pumpkin: Part 1 (17:12) and Part 2 (12:14)
A little girl living on a farm longs to carve the Halloween pumpkin with her father but his chores seem to keep them apart. Can she find a different way to spent time with her father?
Free audio download: The Patchwork Pumpkin (Part 1)
Blog with activities: The Patchwork Pumpkin (Part 1)
Free audio download: The Patchwork Pumpkin (Part 2)
Blog with activities: The Patchwork Pumpkin (Part 2)

The Heebie Jeebies: (6:57)
What goes bump in the night? How do you keep the Heebie Jeebies 
away, especially on Halloween?
Free audio download: The Heebie Jeebies

Blog with activities: The Heebie Jeebies

A Glummy, Gloomy Halloween (11:17)
A goblin named Glum wants to have a surprise birthday party for his brother Gloom, but every monster he invites already has plans for the evening.
Free audio download: A Glummy, Gloomy Halloween
Blog with activities: A Glummy, Gloomy Halloween


COMPREHENSION CHALLENGE
After listening to the story, can you recall the
details to answer these questions?

1. Who was the host interviewing?
2. What does the host refer to that is "so loud it could wake the dead?"
3. Where was the guest on the show from in the United States?
4. Why does the interviewer ask about her guest's video?
5. How does the zombie answer when she asks him any question?

Griffin  
Olivia
Andrew
Isabella
Tricia
Lauren
Ryan
Cate 
Kelly
Riley
Noah
Zadie
Zachary
Junior
Pam
Tucker 
Brayden

Did you know...our fully illustrated version of Dragonfly, Dragonfly
Show Us The Way is now available in English and Spanish as an in-app purchase from the Flying Books appIt is available for download 
on your iPhone or iPad. 

Illustration by Reg Silva

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

LIGHTING THE WAY WITH WORDS

The Patchwork Pumpkin: Part 1 (17:12) and Part 2 (12:14)

A little girl living on a farm longs to carve the Halloween 
pumpkin with her father but his chores seem to keep them apart. 
Can she find a different way to spent time with her father?


Free audio download: The Patchwork Pumpkin (Part 1)
Blog with activities: The Patchwork Pumpkin (Part 1)
Free audio download: The Patchwork Pumpkin (Part 2)
Blog with activities: The Patchwork Pumpkin (Part 2)


Whether it's a hike, a run, a bike ride, a walk or a fun wrestling match while getting your pajamas on, it's important to get your body moving
throughout the day. What's your favorite type of exercise?
Share it with us in the comments, on our Facebook page or Twitter.

As always, we look forward to watching the glow grow brighter
with the many words we can share together.

Friday, September 13, 2013

LIGHTING THE WAY WITH WORDS


Bird Seeds (21:10)

When Agnes, an old woman who lives alone in the woods, discovers a mysterious packet of seeds she finds more than just 
vegetables can grow in her garden. 
Free audio download: Bird Seeds
Blog with activities: Bird Seeds


Have you seen our other words that begin with X?

Xanthous
Xenagogue
Xeric
Xiphosuran
Xylophone

Thursday, September 5, 2013

LIGHTING THE WAY WITH WORDS


Bus Stop Bravery: (7:28)
Getting ready for the very first bus ride on 
the very first day of school can be a nerve-racking experience!

Free audio download: Bus Stop Bravery

Blog with activities: Bus Stop Bravery




When I taught elementary school, I remember how small the desks and chairs were. It never failed that I would end up in a situation where I needed to sit in one of the seats at one of the desks to speak to a student. The combination of the small desk and even smaller chair would form a wedge. I'd always be stuck, trying to figure out how to maneuver my way out of it. 

Look around you right now. Make a list of all the things that could form a wedge. Can you create your own wedge? Send us a picture of your creation at nightlightstories@gmail.com or post it on our Facebook Page

As always, we look forward to watching the glow grow brighter with the many words 
we can share together. 

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

LIGHTING THE WAY WITH WORDS

A Place for Everyone: (13:58)
As a teacher approaches her first day of school, she is overwhelmed with all the possibilities for themes in her classroom. 
How will she choose?

Free audio download: A Place for Everyone
Blog with activities: A Place for Everyone


Sled Ride: (6:06)
A little boy tells of his exciting sled ride down the 
hill while trying to avoid a collision.

Free audio download: Sled Ride
Blog with activities: Sled Ride




You should have heard Mr. Chris and our daughter laughing as the boat pulled the tube across the lake.  As the velocity increased, so did the volume of their screams of delight. Our summer is coming to a close as more kids and teachers are going back to school. We want to take a moment to wish everyone a year full of learning, creativity and FUN! 

As always, we look forward to watching the glow grow brighter with the many stories and words we can share together! 

Saturday, August 10, 2013

LIGHTING THE WAY WITH WORDS

The Walk: (11:46)

A description from a little boy of all the sights he sees 
on a walk with his family.
Free audio download: The Walk
Blog with activities: The Walk

The Hike: (13:26)
The sequel to "The Walk" describes the boy's adventures 
he has on a hike with his family.

Free audio download: The Hike
Blog with activities: The Hike