Teach Mama Talks: Learn and Play with Big Rig Building Truck

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This educational idea is brought to you by Melissa & Doug, written by our Blog Ambassador Amy Mascott. “When learning is disguised as play, everyone’s a winner.”  -Amy Fantastic learning opportunities can be found in almost any part of the day, whether it’s morning, noon, or night.  All you have to do is be ready [...]

Creating a Custom Gift Bundle: Puzzles

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What’s the perfect fit for clever kids? Puzzles! This classic gift option comes in a huge variety of levels and themes, so it’s easy (and lots of fun!) to customize a collection especially for your child. Check out some of our favorite puzzle-gifting ideas below and get inspired to put together a gift bundle of [...]

Teach Mama Talks: The Voting Process for Kids– Using Puzzles for Better Understanding

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This educational idea is brought to you by Melissa & Doug , written by our Blog Ambassador Amy Mascott. “Election time is an ideal opportunity to sneak in a little learning, no matter which candidate gets your vote.”  -Amy The voting process is so hard for kids–and even adults!–to understand, so what better way to [...]

Val’s Crafty Corner: Painted Puzzle Magnets

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This idea for crafty fun is brought to you by Melissa & Doug, written by our Blog Ambassador Valerie Deneen. Enjoy crafting with your kids! -Valerie Are your puzzles missing a few pieces? Have they been loved to death? Do you want to give them some new life as a gift for a special friend [...]

Melissa & Doug and the 2012 Toys “R” Us Toy Guide for Differently-Abled Kids

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Melissa & Doug products have been selected as part of the 2012 Toys “R” Us Toy Guide for Differently-Abled Kids. This annual publication, a free resource for parents and caregivers, features toys that encourage developmental growth for kids of all abilities. Selection is rigorous, and we’re thrilled to have three Melissa & Doug favorites included: [...]

Which Kind of Puzzle Is Right for My Child?

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For building fine motor skills, hand-eye coordination, and problem-solving skills, puzzles can’t be beat! But to many parents, trying to make sense of the huge variety of formats and styles can feel like a puzzle in itself. Feel like you’re missing a piece? Check out our puzzle primer to find the perfect fit for your [...]

Puzzles – At Any Age! Video Round-Up from Melissa

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Last week on the blog, we covered the many different reasons why we LOVE Unit Block activities and projects. This week, we’ll cover another favorite: puzzles. As one of the first toys a child plays with, and one of the most educational, these pieces can help your child sharpen a number of important skills over [...]

Teach Mama Talks: 5 Ideas for All-Ages Playdates

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This creative play idea is brought to you by Melissa & Doug, written by our Blog Ambassador Amy Mascott. It’s very common to have children of mixed ages during playdates, especially when siblings, cousins and neighbors join in on the fun.  The more (ages), the merrier, in my opinion!  –Amy Summer’s almost here, which often [...]

5 Pre-Writing Skill-Builders

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Build hand, arm and shoulder strength. Encourage your child to draw, paint and create on a vertical surfaces–like an upright easel, the walls of the bathtub (try watercolors or bath crayons!), or a refrigerator or magnetic board. This position helps strengthen hand, wrist and shoulder strength, all of which are needed for writing. Strengthen fine motor [...]