20 Best Tips
Teaching Textbooks

Insect Nature Study Printables – Learning About Bugs

Insect Nature Study Printables from Homeschool Creations

Spring is almost officially here – and that means lots of beautiful weather to enjoy nature walks and exploring of the various insects we come across. While bugs aren’t always a favorite of mine (I’d much rather be looking at birds, thank you very much), they all still have a purpose. Except for stinkbugs. I don’t know what there purpose is…   If you have kiddos in your house that are willing to search and discover different bugs and have some learning fun, head out doors and get up-close and personal while using these go-along printables!  

What insects do you see frequently in your area? Are there any that you get excited to see (or is it better to say scream over)?


The Insect Nature Study Printables set contains:

Insect Nature Study printables from Homeschool Creations

The Insect Nature Study Printables include the following:

  • Nature walk counting sheet – mark a tally every time you see one of the insects on the sheet
  • Backyard Insect counting – mark a tally when you see an insect in your yard
  • Insect scavenger hunt – for younger children, take this scavenger hunt sheet on a nature walk or when sitting outside
  • Blank insect observation sheet – record data and information on insects you find
  • Label the parts of an ant
  • Story writing prompt – write a short story using four of the words provided
  • Firefly poem and coloring page
  • Fact and coloring cards – color the image and write facts you know on the back

 Download the Insect Nature Study Printables HERE


Interested in the Extended Pack?

Interested in a larger set of the Insect Nature Study Printables? There is an extended pack with additional labeling sheets (for ant, dragonfly, and bee)  as well as individual observation sheets for the following insects: ant, bee, dragonfly, firefly, fly, grasshopper, ladybug, luna moth, monarch butterfly, mosquito, rhino beetle, scarab beetle, stinkbug, and tick.

Purchase the full set for $2.00 in my Teachers Pay Teachers shop.


Additional Learning Ideas and Inspiration


The inspiration for this pack initially came from Tyndale’s Faith That Sticks insect pack and my past Bird Nature Study Printables pack. The stickers feature nine different insects (several that are focused on in this nature study pack (along with a MANY others) and will be a fun addition to your nature study.

Here are a few things you can do with the stickers. There are six sticker sheets in the set, so plenty to use for a few of the following ideas including:

· Using two sheets to create a matching game. Simply cut 18 3×3 squares of cardstock and put a sticker on each piece. Then have fun matching them up.

· Use the stickers as a guide and have your child sketch their own image of the bird. These stickers have some great colors that are eye-catching!

· Write a story using the stickers. Have your child write their own story picking 2 or 3 of the stickers or have them dictate one to you.

· Make some fun spring cards using the beautiful birds and let your child create a ‘scene’ to put the birds into!

· For older children, put each of the 9 stickers onto a 3×3 cardstock square and let them practice alphabetizing the birds.

· Make popsicle stick puppets with each of the bird stickers.

· Create a simple windsock and use the stickers to decorate. The stickers are light enough that they won’t add extra weight to the windsock.

· Make a fun bracelet with a few of the stickers and wear it on a nature walk. See what birds you find as you walk along!


Learning About Insects: Further Resources

Don’t miss these additional printables and helps for your bird nature study!



Like this pack? Don’t miss the Bird Nature Study Printables found HERE.


The Very Hungry Caterpillar Word Cards – FREE Printable

Very Hungry Caterpillar word cards from Homeschool Creations

The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle is such a classic children’s book, and with my nieces and nephew working on Carle’s books together with their mom, I put together these Very Hungry Caterpillar Word Cards for them to use in the upcoming weeks – and thought you all might enjoy them as well!

 vocabulary cards for The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle

There are two different pages for the word cards – a total of 24 word cards in all for The Very Hungry Caterpillar. Words include: apple, pear, plum, strawberry, orange, cake, cone, pickle, cheese, salami, lollipop, pie, sausage, cupcake, watermelon, leaf, cocoon, butterfly, caterpillar, and sun.

You will need TWO downloads (both free!!) to use the word cards – both the word cards and the Read! Build! Write! Mats.

All downloads are in the green columns on the Read! Build! Write! page

The Read! Build! Write! Vocabulary Mats

Not familiar with the Read! Build! Write! mats? Basically, they are a fun way to work with your child on word identification and spelling.

Read, Build, Write collage

Here’s how the mats are used:

Read: Place one of the vocabulary cards in the top box and read the word together.

Build: Use letter tiles or magnets to build the word in the second box.

Write: Finally, practice writing the word in the bottom box.

Print the mats onto cardstock and then laminate them so that you can use Vis-à-vis markers or dry erase markers on the mats.

Read, Build, Write collage 2

Check out the Read! Build! Write! page to find additional themed vocabulary cards to go along with all of the Early Learning Printable Packs that I’ve put together so far.

All downloads are in the green columns on the Read! Build! Write! page


Hope these help you all out! Feel free to ‘pin’ the printables and share them with others! If there are some other vocabulary cards that you would like to see me put together, leave a comment and let me know!


FREE Preschool Chore Charts – Subscriber Freebie

free Preschool Chore Charts

Younger children can have a hard time reading from a chore list. Picture cards can be a huge help at the preschool age so kids can see what needs to be done each day – and actually work on their daily chores (grins).

Our kids have learned personal and financial responsibility in the process as they are taught how to save, give, and put money in their wallet for spending too!

While I’ve shared a version of our preschool chore charts in the past, I recently found some wonderful clip art that included a few bonus chores and was also cute – a win-win!

These charts have been some of the most popular downloads here and I’ve received many emails with requests for extra chores, so I put together a FREE Preschool Chore Chart printable especially for my email subscribers – yay!!

Are you already an email subscriber? Please go to this private page and enter the NEW password. You can find the password in your most current email at the very bottom. Become a subscriber HERE and receive instant access. 


Preschool chore charts with pictures-1

When Kaleb was younger, this is the chore chart that we used for him and it worked wonderfully. (And to tell you the truth – he still prefers this visual chore chart over our chore charts for the older kids!) We broke his chore chart into three parts: morning chores, afternoon chores, and chores that he could earn money on.

He earned minimal money, but our point in paying for a few chores is to help our kids understand the concept of giving, saving, and spending. Pennies were excitement to our kids at that age (they think they are rich!), so it was a great way to learn.

The chore charts and chore cards can be printed off on to cardstock and laminated to make them sturdier. Place velcro dots in the center of each square and on the back of each chore cards to make them stick to the chore chart. (See below for additional ways to use the printables).

Using the Chore Charts

Each morning I added chore cards to his chart. When a chore was completed, he would remove it and put it in a little box nearby. Chores he completed to earn money were tracked on the back of the chart by writing with a  Sharpie (the Sharpie comes off easily with nail polish remover or you can use a vis-à-vis marker as well).

Preschool chore charts with pictures-4


The cards are the same size as my workbox activity cards, so if you want to mix and match those cards with this grid, they will work together.

Daily Chores for Preschool

Preschool chore charts with pictures-2

We kept it pretty simple for our preschool chores. Above is a peek at some of the things that we had on Kaleb’s chore chart. Many of the chores rotated throughout the week, but there were several that were consistent on a daily basis.

  • Daily chores: make bed, clean room, brush teeth, pick-up clothes, pick up shoes/hang up jacket, set table, wash table, devotions.
  • Extra {paid} chores: trash, vacuum, laundry, wash windows, dust, sweep, water plants, weed garden.

If you need help coming up with chore ideas, here is a great list from Money Saving Mom to help you out.


Tips for an Effective Chore System

    1. Make sure chores are age appropriate. Children can be taught to complete household tasks, but there are some things that are definitely more difficult for younger children to work on vs. older children. Be sure that the chores you are asking your very young children are appropriate for their age. Younger children can help sweep, push a vacuum cleaner, pick up toys, match socks, etc… but may not be ready for other chores. Just because a chore card is listed, doesn’t mean it has to be used. (grins)
    2. Keep the chore charts handy – and where they can be seen. Hang your charts somewhere where they will be seen daily – the front of the fridge, near the bedroom door. Where ever they are, be sure to keep them handy so both you and your child remember to work on them.
    3. Walk through how the charts work with your kids. Be sure to show your kids how the chore chart will work each day. Do they need to check in with you when they are done and have you go over their work? Have the system in place
    4. Know what works best as incentives for your kids. Some children may work for treats from the Dollar Tree, while others may work for small monetary prizes. The incentives are up to you – and you know what works best for your children!
    5. Be consistent in payout of incentives. It is so easy to let things slide, but if you are working with your kids in understanding that no work = no pay, remember that it goes the same the other way too. When you work, your boss pays you, so pick a ‘payday’ and take care of it each week or whenever you set up your payday.

Washing dishes is always fun….


And making beds…


Additional Ways to Use the Chore Charts

Rather than using a large chart, there are a few alternate ways that the chore charts can be used.

Preschool chore charts with pictures-3

    • Use a jump ring: The cards can be printed off on cardstock, laminated, and then put onto a jump ring so children can carry them around while working. The printable includes a few alternative cards that can be placed on the jump ring as well: morning chores, afternoon chores, paid, chores, etc…
    • Use magnetic sheets: If you have a magnetic refrigerator, consider printing the chore cards off onto magnetic sheets, cutting them out, and placing chores on your fridge. Store finished or extra chores in a magnetic pencil bin nearby. We have friends that do this and it is so handy!

Download the Preschool Chore Charts

Preschool Chore Chart example


The chore chart file has five different colored charts: blue, green, pink, purple and white {so you can print on colored cardstock if you would like} and also includes chore cards. If you have any questions, feel free to ask. :)

If you aren’t on the paid chore bandwagon, there is a white chart with an alternate text of morning, afternoon, and evening.

This is a FREE download for subscribers – and it is really easy to subscribe by simply clicking HEREor by entering your email in the box at the bottom of this post. 

Subscribe button

After you subscribe by email, you will receive a confirmation. Once you confirm your subscription, you will be redirected to a page with a link, password, and directions to get your FREEBIE!! You can always email me if you have any questions and I’d be happy to help you out. 

In case you missed them before, you can also download a copy of our Chore Chart Printables for our older kids and see how we’re implementing that system in our house. There may also be extra cards for you to use in the workbox activity cards.

Hope this helps you out and feel free to ask any questions below!


Chore Chart Supplies

The following products are ones that we use and recommend for putting your chore charts together – the Scotch laminator ROCKS!! I’ve had mine for years and it is still going!





Updated Calendar Notebook Binder Printables

A few of you asked for more weather options on the Calendar Notebook Binder – and they are uploaded and ready! Everything else is the same, but there is also a non-seasonal version for those of you in the Southern Hemisphere!

Calendar Notebook Printables free


The Calendar Notebook has been a fun addition to our learning each morning and a chance to work on math skills, a little bit of science, and also handwriting. We use these daily along with our Morning Calendar Board.

Below you can download three different versions of the Calendar Notebook Binder printables: one for early handwriting and manuscript, one for cursive, and another for the Southern Hemisphere folks (no seasonal clip art so the seasons aren’t confusing!).



Both the manuscript and cursive version now include the following seven weather choices: sunny, partly sunny, cloudy, rainy, stormy, windy, and snowy.

How to Use the Calendar Notebook

Here’s a peek at how we’re using ours with the kids, and because some of you may not want to read, here is a video tour our our calendar notebook. You can also read this post for more detailed explanations on the pages.


{feed readers may need to visit the blog to view the video clip}

We’ve laminated the first few pages and use a vis’-a-vis marker {it wipes off easily with a damp cloth each day} to work in the notebook. You can otherwise slide the pages into page protectors and use dry erase markers.

The calendar notebook printables also include the following:


    • 12 undated monthly calendars {you can use them year after year}
    • monthly weather tracking graphs
    • Today is, number word identification, telling time and temperature
    • Breaking down numbers by 1’s, 10’s, and 100’s
    • Practicing tally marks
    • Yearly weather tracking
    • Handwriting practice
    • Pattern practice {part of the monthly calendar pages}
    • Identification of seasons
    • 100 Days of School chart

Supplies for the Calendar Notebook Binder

These are the supplies that we use for our calendar notebooks…



Download the Free Calendar Notebook!!

Ready to download the files? Choose one or both of the files below! They are FREE to download {and feel free to pin, tweet or share this post with others!}.

Download the Calendar Notebook Printables – manuscript version

Download the Calendar Notebook Printables – cursive version

Download the Southern Hemisphere Calendar Notebook Printables


Other Calendar Notebooks

These ladies also have some great printables to use during calendar time and each offer something a little different – so there may be something you can use as well or something you like even better than mine!

Get a peek at our Morning Calendar Board and grab even more free printables here.

Calendar Board Printables from Homeschool Creations

July Pocket Chart Calendar Pieces – Freebie Printable

July pocket chart calendar pieces from homeschoolcreations.net


Ready for some free calendar pieces for the month of July? Maybe you aren’t doing ‘school’ during the summer months, but these are a fun way to keep the math learning going in a simple way.

The July pocket chart calendar pieces have three different colored number cards and pictures. Use the different colored number cards to try different pattern sequences: an ABC pattern, ABAB pattern, AABB pattern and other patterns you can make up together. Here’s an example of different patterns using the cards from a past set to give you a few ideas.

pattern example The set includes a calendar header for the month of July as well. Time to get your pocket charts and laminators ready and start printing the June pocket chart calendar pieces. {Psst —> Here are some cheaper laminating pouches we use and LOVE!}.

July header


Additional Calendar Helps

Here are a few additional printables and helps for you all, including the pocket chart that we use, laminating tips, and additional printables you may like:


Yearly pocket chart calendar numbers from Homeschool Creations copy Pocket chart holiday and special occasion cards


Keep up with the newest posts and subscribe by RSS or e-mail to be the first to know of other free printables!

Coupon Codes and Companies to Thank

We really appreciate the following companies – be sure to stop by their sites and check them out.

Find out more about the 2014 Homeschool Conventions

Our family is looking forward to the 2015 Teach Them Diligently Conventions – we so enjoyed the one we attended in D.C. and the kids are looking forward to the one in Ohio next year! Speakers are being lined up now and it is promising to be another great year! Stay tuned for more information on the 2015 locations and speakers (I’ll definitely be joining them again!).

Homeschool High School Science Tutorials

Red Wagon Tutorials offers upper level science help for homeschool families worldwide. They specialize in downloadable, online live-feed, and online recorded science classes as well as digital e-Notebooks and Flash Drive presentations. Learn more about their 2014-2015 programs.


ConLitHistoryNeverKnew450x450_zps8288a06d BTS RE 2014 Homeschool Creations Squilt Music Appreciation


Apologia has a brand new Constitutional Literacy DVD class for high school – and truthfully it is one that adults will benefit from as well. The class is taught by Michael Farris of HSLDA and is a full high school credit! Visit their site to find out more!

No More Lemonade – Most teachers’ view of entrepreneurship can be summed up in a few short sentences. If it’s difficult, make it impossible. If it’s complex, pretend it’s not. And if you think you understand it, you probably don’t. Learn entrepreneurship the right way – experience it.

SQUILT (Super Quiet Uninterrupted Listening Time) is a music appreciation curriculum for preschool through middle school that is easy to teach and implement for the parent with limited or NO musical knowledge. Use code HSCREATIONS at checkout to receive 25% off any volume and get your fine arts classes ready for the upcoming year!

Get your child reading with a FREE 4 week trial of Reading Eggs, the multi award-winning online reading program for 3 to 7 year olds. Sign up here: www.readingeggs.com/hsc/.



Reader’s Favorite Posts from June 2014

Curious to see what others have been reading this past month? Below is a list of the ten most visited posts for the month of June 2014:

  1. Three Letter Word Card Printables
  2. Used Homeschool Curriculum Sale
  3. Organizing School Paperwork
  4. Alphabet Flashcards and Wall Posters
  5. Daily Calendar Notebook Printables
  6. Our Workbox System: Weekly Workbox Grid
  7. Book Report Form and Reading Log Printables

  PDF Printing Problems

Having trouble downloading or printing this file? Be sure to check out the post on PDF Download Problems for tips and tricks on getting the files to download properly. The solution is usually something simple and quick!

Pirate Theme Early Learning Printables – updated and expanded!

Pirate theme printables for preschool and kindergarten

A few years ago I shared a pirate theme lapbook that we used with our oldest son and it was recently updated to include more printables! Of course, I figured you all might enjoy the chance to use it too!

Rather than a lapbook style, the Pirate Theme Early Learning Printables pack includes some of the familiar favorites: vocabulary cards, a story sheet, verses, beginning letter sounds as well as a few ‘new’ printables that don’t fit in pockets: mazes, tracer pages, and more.

Download the Pirate Early Learning Printables HERE!

Fun Pirate Reading Adventures


Pirate Lapbook

The original Pirate Lapbook is still available to download as well, and includes a few extra printables that are not a part of the expanded Pirate Pack.