Tag Archives: education

Pluto the Dwarf Planet

Regular readers of my blog may remember that I recently reviewed the fabulous WonderKid Space Bumper Pack and ran a very popular giveaway for one.

Wonderkid Space subscription box

I am delighted to say that Anneka is the lucky winner. She correctly answered the following question.

In 2006 the International Astronomical Union (IAU) decided that Pluto could no longer be classified as a planet. What is Pluto now classified as?

And the answer is that Pluto is now classified as a Dwarf Planet.

And here are some facts provided by WonderKid about Pluto, the Dwarf Planet.

Pluto was considered a planet for 76 years. First discovered in 1930 at the Lowell Observatory in Flagstaff Arizona, the planet is named after the Roman God of the underworld. Wait a minute! Isn’t that Hades? No; Hades was the Greek God of the underworld. The name Pluto was proposed by an eleven year old schoolgirl from Oxford, England called Venetia Burney.

“I think Pluto would be a good name for it.” said the young Venetia at the breakfast table after her grandfather had read out the news of the planet’s discovery from The London Times on 14 March 1930. Venetia was familiar with Greek and Roman mythology and the name was apt as Pluto (the Roman God of the underworld) could make himself invisible and dwelt in a cold dark place where the sunlight did not reach.

The former planet Pluto orbits our Sun far out in an icy region of the Solar System called the Kuiper Belt. In the 1990s scientists began to find many similar sized objects in the Kuiper Belt. Some of the newly discovered objects were even bigger than Pluto. One such object, called Eris, was discovered in 2005. Astronomers had to make a decision on whether all of the newly discovered objects would become planets or whether they would have to create a new, narrower definition of a planet. They went with the latter.

In 2006 the International Astronomical Union (IAU) got together to decide what the definition of a planet should be. The IAU came up with a new three step test for whether an object could be classified as a planet in our Solar System:

1. Does it orbit our Sun?
2. Does it have enough mass to make it (almost) round?
3. Has it removed other small objects from around its orbit? (unlike asteroids)

Only if an object (which is not a satellite to a planet e.g. a moon) meets all three of these criteria can it be called a planet. Unfortunately for Pluto, and its fans, it only passed the first two criteria of the test and was no longer classified as a planet! However, in a way the Solar System became a more interesting place; now there was yet another type of object discovered spinning around the Sun – which astronomers called ‘dwarf planets’!

Let me remind you that I have a special offer to share with my readers. 20% off your first WonderKid box when you use the code BLOGGINGMUMMY20 at checkout. The code is valid for the first 10 people who take up the offer and is limited to one per person.

I’d love to hear about your favourite space facts or your ideas for themes to feature in future boxes.

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Disclosure. This post mentions products I was sent for free. All opinions are my own.

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WonderKid subscription boxes and giveaway

When WonderKid approached me and asked if I would like to review one of their kids educational subscription boxes, the boys and I took a look at their website. The current theme was dinosaurs but son2 immediately spotted that the previous box had been on space, which is one of his favourites interests. So we asked if it would be possible to review that one instead.

Son2 kept asking when it would arrive, as it took longer than usual, since WonderKid had to go back to the manufacturer to source the old edition. So he was delighted when we got back from holiday to find not one, but two large boxes waiting next-door for us.

Wonderkid Space subscription box

We had been sent both the WonderKid Space Bumper Pack and the WonderKid Junior Space version for free. They were very well packed.

I was very pleased to see that all items included were of high quality including the WonderKid magazine, books, games and activities. The boys have dipped into the contents but all this is going to keep them happy and occupied for many hours.

Wonderkid Space subscription box

Son2 shares all the contents with you in this video.

There are two ways to subscribe. You can either pay for just one box or you can subscribe for a year at a discounted rate. Boxes are sent out quarterly. Current pricing is £43.97 per quarter or £34.99 for the junior version for younger children. Please note that pricing does fluctuate in GBP sterling, as it is based in Euros.

The previous editions can still be purchased via the WonderKid website. The WonderKid Space Bumper Pack is currently retailing at £70.88 and is targeted at children age 7-12. Meanwhile the WonderKid Junior Space is currently retailing at £34.99 and is targeted at children age 3-6.

Wonderkid Space junior subscription box

The  mission of WonderKid is to inspire and encourage children to actively explore their curiosity, so that they engage in learning and discovery at an early age. They believe that introducing children to a broad range of ideas and concepts, through science, history, philosophy and literature, allows them to grow and learn as people, and in turn form and cultivate their own ideas, and their intellectual and creative genius; to become WonderKids! And I myself wholeheartedly support this ethos.

Wonderkid Space subscription box

Other previous topics have included Dinosaurs, Robots, Ancient Greece, Insects, Bugs and Creepy Crawlies. The next edition will be on Oceans.

We even had 2 packets of Astronaut’s neapolitan ice-cream (one in each box). Not a patch on real ice-cream but still a tasty little treat. Must be very strange having all their food freeze-dried like that.

Astronaut's freeze-dried neapolitan ice-cream

My boys are having so much fun. This is the best educational kids subscription box I have come across in my opinion. I highly recommend WonderKid.

The only small negative point I have to make is that I couldn’t get any of the FAQ answers to display on their website. Possibly a browser issue, but hopefully something that gets resolved asap.

And I’m hosting a rafflecopter competition to giveaway a WonderKid Space box to one lucky winner. What a fabulous prize. The winner will be able to choose between the Space Bumper pack and the Junior Space pack, according to which is more appropriate to the age of the child who it is intended for.
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a Rafflecopter giveaway – Please click on the link to enter.

And you may see my other giveaways here.

Plus I have a special offer to share with my readers. 20% off your first box when you use the code BLOGGINGMUMMY20 at checkout. The code is valid for the first 10 people who take up the offer and is limited to one per person.

I’d love to hear about your ideas for themes to feature in future boxes.

Visit Yet Another Blogging Mummy on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Instagram

Disclosure. This post is a review of products I was sent for free. All opinions are my own.

Learning Success plus giveaway

Son1 has had memory and concentration issues and is very slow with his schoolwork since undergoing chemotherapy, but is very bright at maths. He also has to attend an extra handwriting lesson weekly, plus use an ergonomic pen and occasionally has one-to-one sessions with the special needs teacher. Meanwhile son2 seems to take everything absolutely literally and have some social difficulties. So I was quite interested to find out more when Learning Success approached me to test out their Learning System for free.

Learning Success System

When I read their blog, I found out that the Learning Success System is a simple method parents can use to help children overcome learning difficulties. It simplifies the process and enables a parent to work at home with their child.

They say that the Learning Success System is:
• Convenient for both children and parents
• Minimizes high costs of learning centres
• Uses cutting edge neuroscience research

Their learning strategy is divided into three parts.

Strategy 1 – Calm the emotions
Strategy 2 – Incorporate the Body
Strategy 3 – Build up the Fundamental Skills of Learning

Statistics show that at least 20% of children suffer with some sort of learning difficulty. This could be with reading, writing or maths. Learning Success offer analysis of what symptoms your child exhibits.

Once I signed up, I received daily emails with exercise suggestions. I also had access to the Learning Success System portal where I can find the full range of exercises and can sort by type. There are member forums where I can seek expert advice or interact with other parents. It also focusses on what you need to do as a parent, such as praising your child for effort.

The boys were quite engrossed in some of the on-screen exercises like tapping where each smiley appeared or shouting out what a picture would be when it starts as a dotted outline and gradually more appears. Some of the other exercises do additionally require you to source the materials, so I adapted a letters memory game to be based on numbers and used playing cards. You start with 2 pairs face down and see how many turns it takes to find the matching pairs. Then you gradually add an extra pair every round. The boys loved taking turns at this and we went upto 13 pairs.

Memory number game

Memory number game

It is too early for me to identify any difference in my sons but I shall continue doing some of the exercises with them. I haven’t managed to get into a routine with this yet.

The Learning System is currently available for either a one-off payment of $297 or 12 monthly payments of $49 with a 90 day money back guarantee. The monthly payment option can be cancelled at any time. I’ve checked the exchange rate and these figures equate to about £230 or £38 at present, so quite expensive in my opinion. But for some, it may be a well worth while investment and really make a difference to a member of your family.

And I’m hosting a rafflecopter competition to giveaway access to the Learning Success System portal to one lucky winner. Open worldwide.
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a Rafflecopter giveaway – Please click on the link to enter.

And you may see my other giveaways here.

I’d love to hear your top learning tips.

Visit Yet Another Blogging Mummy on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Instagram

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Disclosure.  This post is a review of a product I received for free.  All opinions are my own.