10+ Painting Crafts for Kids

If you’re more of a Neat Nancy than a Messy Mary, then now is the perfect time to try a painting project — You can use the still-warm weather to speed up your dry time and take advantage of a natural grass “drop cloth” and a garden hose to make clean-up quick and easy. Check […]

6 Easy Activity Bags for Instant Entertainment (and Learning!)

This arts & crafts tip is provided by special Guest Blogger Julie Kieras from HappyStrongHome.com. I’m going to be teaching home preschool with my son this fall. With our baby being one year old, I know there will be lots of interruptions. So I’ve already got my back pocket full with these colorful activity bag ideas. […]

Guest Post: Classic Toys & Simplistic Play

From our special guest blogger Marnie (Carrots are Orange): “I have a challenge for you: Choose one of these classic items – activity cones, blocks, drawing pad or pattern blocks. Leave it in a room where your child may discover the materials on his own. Remove any distraction (e.g. other toys, tv, books, etc) and simply observe. See what happens when your child […]

Playtime Tips for Building Self Awareness

These fine motor activities are provided for the Melissa & Doug blog by Cindy Utzinger, pediatric Occupational Therapist. “Where am I in space?”  “What is my body doing right now?” Those are probably not questions that you ask yourself very often. It is very important, however, that all of us have an awareness of where our […]

6 Grandparents Day Activities for Kids (Plus 2 Printables!)

For today’s multi-generational families, Grandparents Day can mean more than a card or a phone call. So if your children’s grandparents are nearby – maybe even under the same roof – the ideas below can help strengthen their special bond. Or, if you’re looking for a special craft, we have some ideas for that as […]

Which BLOCKS Are Best for Your Child?

Our “puzzle guide” article was so well received by our readers that we’ve put together a similar guide to help you choose the right BLOCKS for your child. Whether you have a baby, toddler, or school-age son or daughter, we’ll explain the different features you should look for in block-related toys, games, and activities for […]

Back-to-School “Writing Readiness” Tips

Looking for activities to prepare your little one for school success? Then you’ve come to the “WRITE” place! Today, we’re sharing ideas for strengthening your child’s emerging writing skills using crafts, activities, and toys specially designed to enhance and promote dexterity, hand strength, hand-eye coordination, and fine-motor development. So what are you waiting for? Let’s […]

It’s MAGIC! Teaching Presentation Skills & Building Confidence in Kids

Provided by guest blogger Genny Upton (In Lieu of Preschool and Parent Teach Play). I’ve read that public speaking ranks as the number one fear in the minds of a majority of people in America, even over the fear of death and disease. With so many classes and careers in life that require public speaking, I aim […]

From Melissa: Do YOUR Kids Play with Neighborhood Friends?

Melissa shares her thoughts on the importance of outside play for kids: “Some of my fondest childhood memories are of lazy, carefree summer days spent playing outside with neighborhood friends. No one in my neighborhood had a nanny. Sending the kids outside to play was Mom’s FREE babysitter — and the only way she could […]