7 Ways to Spend More Time as a Family…Unplugged

Family game night ideas from guest blogger Katie Heap of Live Craft Eat. With summer behind us and school in full swing, practices, recitals, and everything else happening in our day-to-day lives can make it challenging to spend time together as a family. It is especially difficult with all the TV’s, tablets, smart phones, and other electronics that […]

5+ Ways to Practice Storytelling (with Puppets!)

 This post is provided by guest contributor Sara McFall of My Merry Messy Life.  As we have begun homeschooling our children this year, I have learned in my research of the importance of storytelling. Until the days of “Beowulf” and the “Odyssey,” stories weren’t written down like they are in modern times. Storytelling was used to communicate, […]

Tell A Story With Toys

This pretend play idea is brought to you by Melissa & Doug, written by our Blog Ambassador Allison McDonald. “Everyday play is what childhood should be about.” -Allison     Early literacy isn’t only about reading books and learning letter sounds. Many of the foundations for good reading and writing include things you can do […]

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. […]

TOP TIPS for Camping with Kids

Nothing delivers “family togetherness” quite like camping. Whether you’re creating some INDOOR camping fun, or you’re doin’ the Real Deal and roughing it OUTDOORS, we’ve got loads of family-tested ideas to help you create a memorable camping adventure for you and your family — in ANY season. So get out your tents and sleeping bags […]

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 […]

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 […]

Work It: 3 Labor Day Activities for Kids

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 […]