Guest Post: Classic Toys & Simplistic Play

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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 [...]

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

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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?

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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 [...]

Work It: 3 Labor Day Activities for Kids

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Each September, we celebrate the contributions of America’s workforce. Use Labor Day as an opportunity for your kids to learn from the adults around them about different occupations and the meaning of good work. 1) Take your child to work Introduce your child to your own workplace in the days surrounding Labor Day. Expose them [...]

61 “Summer Fun” Activities, Crafts, and Games for Kids!

61 Summer Fun Activities

To help your family end the summer with a BANG, we’ve rounded up 61 activities from our Summer Fun Calendar full of ideas for Creative Play — Every Day. Why 61? We’re sharing 30 game, craft, and activity ideas from our June Calendar and 31 ideas from our July Calendar to give you 61 “Summer [...]

6 Ways to Have Fun with Literacy in the Kitchen

6 Ways to Have Fun with Literacy in the Kitchen

This learning activity is provided by Guest Blogger Kim Vij of The Educators’ Spin On It. Let’s step into the kitchen for hands-on fun & learning with your child. Cooking with your child can be a memorable experience but you can also be encouraging your child to read at the same time! Here are a few [...]

4 Activities to Help Prepare Your Child for Kindergarten

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From guest blogger Katie Heap of Live Craft Eat. Summertime is coming to a close and that means only one thing – Back to School! For your child entering kindergarten this can be both an exciting experience and one that can make him feel a little hesitant. It is, after all, his first opportunity to put his budding [...]

Fine Motor Activities to Encourage Good Pencil Grip

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These play-based fine motor activities are provided for the Melissa & Doug blog by Cindy Utzinger,  pediatric Occupational Therapist. Holding a pencil correctly- why does something that looks so easy seem so hard to teach our kids?  Using a mature pencil grasp (one that involves just the thumb and index finger or thumb, index, and middle [...]

Quick Tips: Making Friends With Food

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Remind kids (and yourself) why good food is good. Here are some tips for helping kids know…that Food is Good! Tie food to things your child cares about. Explain that protein in lean meats builds muscle and strength for sports. Whole grains and the vitamins in fruits and vegetables help our brains focus in school. [...]