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Parents like the board game Scrabble and it’s many variations.  The games are fun and help build spelling skills. 

For the younger kids, there is Scrabble Jr.  For those who prefer a fast pace game, there is Scrabble Slam.  For the older kids, the Scrabble iPhone app is all the rage.

Scrabble Jr. has colorful pictures to keep your little one attention and has tiles that are just the right size for little hands.  The kids match the tiles to words spelled out on the board and collect chips when a word is spelled.  The winner is the person with the most chips at the end.  As your child gets older you flip the board over and they spell out there own words.  This game will grow with your child. 

Scrabble Slam is the fast paced version.  Beat the other players by using your cards to change four letter words.  You might change same to fame, but hurry because the first one to get rid of their cards is the winner. 

Visit http://www.hasbro.com/scrabble/en_US/shop/browse.cfm to see all the Scrabble options available.

This is an uncompensated review of the Scrabble products

World World


Word World is a show that is both entertaining and educational for preschoolers.  A federal study showed that this show boosts early reading skills.  See http://www.wordworld.com/02_25_09_EducationWeek.pdf for more details.

Mimi’s Cafe

It’s difficult to find a restaurant that provides a good balance between the needs of parents and the needs of children.  While it will never replace Chuck-E-Cheese or McDonalds as your kids favorite, Mimi’s Cafe offers great food for folks of all ages. 

When you are seated the kids will receive paper and crayons to keep their little hands and minds out of trouble.   The kids will be able to choose from playful menu items like “Mimi Mouse Pancakes”, “PB & J Soldiers”, or the all time favorite “Kraft Macaroni and Cheese”.    

The parents menu will also have lots of great choices.  My personal favorite is the “Chipotle Breakfast Burrito”. 

Visit http://mimiscafe.com/ for more information.

State Benchmark Tests

Parents are often curious about the standardized tests given to students.  The websites below will allow you to download a limited number of sample questions for your state’s benchmark exams.

Arkansas: Augmented Benchmark Assessment/SAT 10 MAT8 

Arizona:  AIMS Sample Tests

California:   Colorado Student Assessment Program (CSAP) Released Items

Florida:  FCAT Released Tests & Questions

OCSD Interactive Games


This website lets you build your own games or select for a large number of “pre-built” games.  The “pre-made” games include addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, telling time and more.



Multiplication.com has fun online games to help students learn their multiplication facts.

SpellingCity.com Provides Online Games and Spelling Tests


This is a great way for kids to prepare for a spelling test or to practice spelling.  It is free to create a log in ID.  After you create an ID, you can maintain your own lists of spelling words.  The lists can then be used in the online games and tests.