So, I admit it – I LOVE FREE 30 day trials (7 day trials just aren’t long enough, are they?). So when I had the chance to do a School Tools TV Review, I signed up for the free trial in a quick second! I’ve heard great things about them, and have always wanted to try their character education and anti-bullying resources.
These resources are daily, one minute social skills videos that help kids become their better selves. They are designed for a classroom setting, but work well in a homeschool setting. In a homeschool setting, they open a dialogue between parent and child. With my kids, a one minute video turned into 5-10 minute discussions. The videos provided teaching/bonding time – and we did it first thing in the morning – so it was a great way to start our day.
When we began the School Tools TV Review, we quickly started looking through all three sets of daily videos they have to choose from.
- School Tools TV Review of the K-2 videos – These videos focus on rules, teamwork, healthy behavior, feelings and how to make friends. Each video ends with a thought-provoking question and with an anti-bullying message. I think we equate bullying with the public schools – I’d like to believe my kids never bully anyone – but let’s face it, kids can be mean. So, it’s important to me to teach my kids to be as kind as possible. This product helps in teaching kids these concepts but it also opens up a dialogue that isn’t always easy to start.
Rusty, the gentleman in each video, calls kids Little Diamonds. He wears a diamond t-shirt in the videos, and there are inexpensive rubber bracelets you can purchase that have the diamond theme/message. I have to say, I like the Diamond theme. Our kids are our treasure – we should let them know it. It’s a positive way for a child to start his/her day – to know they are a Diamond. (Rusty’s reasons for calling kids Diamonds – each Diamond/child is individual/unique, Diamonds take a long time to grow, and Diamonds have to deal with pressure).
You can see a screen shot of some of the videos below –
- School Tools TV Review of the Grades 3-7 videos – These videos focus on motivation, team work, healthy choices, thoughts and feelings and friendship. Again, Rusty poses a question at the end of each video, and gives an anti-bullying message. Again, he refers to kids as Little Diamonds.
I’ve included a screenshot of some of the video offerings below. FYI – shows are updated every week throughout the school year (school year, not homeschool year – for this program, the school year starts in August (one new show per day, Mon-Fri for K-2 and Grades 3-7). During the first week of school, you have access to one week of videos. The second week, two weeks of shows and so forth – and old shows can be shared by request.
If you have multiple children in the elementary grades, you can view separate videos with different age groups, or you can view one or more videos together, and gear your conversation to the ages of your children. We did the latter. We also guessed each day, what color shirt Rusty would be wearing (my kids initiated that – and it was fun.)
- School Tools TV Review of the Grades 8 -12 videos – the topics become more complex. Topics include Cooperation, Self-Control, Dating, Anger, and more. Group Discussion Questions are included at the end of each video.
Here is an example of a positive messages contained in the high school videos – “Say yes more. Saying yes is where new learning and experiences come from. Saying yes is what self-discovery and being a lifelong learner is all about.” Wow – that’s a message that can benefit just about everyone! Honestly, I’ve already started to incorporate this into my own life and it’s already been life-changing. This might sound crazy but it truly has made life these last few weeks, better. I’ve learned a lot about myself and what I used to say “no” to.
A screen shot of some of the high school videos follows –
School Tools TV Review – What I like about ALL the videos (all age groups):