Val’s Crafty Corner: Patriotic Note Cards

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This crafty activity with Melissa & Doug art supplies is brought to you by Melissa & Doug, written by our Blog Ambassador Valerie Deneen. Put your stamp on a thoughtful thank you!  -Val With Memorial Day soon upon us, I thought it would be the perfect time to invite my daughter to create some handmade patriotic [...]

Creative Play Quick Tip: Sandbox Full of Dinos!

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Turn your sandbox into a dinosaur hunter’s dream! Bury toy dinos under the sand and invite your little paleontologists to the big dig. You can make a map depicting where the dinosaurs are hidden, leave a trail of dinosaur “footprints” to follow, or just let your kids dig, dig, dig to their hearts’ delight! If [...]

Teach Mama Talks: Beachy Learning

Play & Learn at the BEACH!

This creative play idea is brought to you by Melissa & Doug, written by our Blog Ambassador Amy Mascott. Learning at the beach? You better believe it! Disguised as play, beach time is a perfect time for sneaking in some learning!  –Amy There’s no better time than those long and lazy days at the beach [...]

Parent Watercooler: 5 Tips for an Unforgettable Day at the Beach

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These creative play tips for beach-time fun are brought to you by Melissa & Doug, written by our Blog Ambassador Zina Harrington. Keep the light of curiosity alive!   -Zina Grab the sunscreen, let’s roll! Playing in the sandbox is a blast, but going to the beach opens the door to a world of possibilities. Here [...]

Val’s Crafty Corner: Welcome to Trunki Town!

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This creative play activity is  brought to you by Melissa & Doug, written by our Blog Ambassador Valerie Deneen. Come roll with us!  –Valerie Looking for a simple idea to get the kids outside this summer? This recipe for summer fun could not be any easier, yet it inspires imagination, creativity, and plenty of active [...]

Val’s Crafty Corner: Beaded Necklaces for Mom

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This creative play craft and activity for Mother’s Day is  brought to you by Melissa & Doug, written by our Blog Ambassador Valerie Deneen. Make a beautiful bracelet or necklace for Mom with this pretty bead “bouquet!”   – Valerie These beaded necklaces are so much fun to make, and they would be such a special [...]

Val’s Crafty Corner: DIY Letter-Writing Kit

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This educational activity is brought to you by Melissa & Doug, written by our Blog Ambassador Valerie Deneen. Get your letter-writing supplies organized and let your kids enjoy some old-school fun! Do you love getting letters in the mail? Do you want to send off a quick note to a friend, but tend to lose [...]

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 [...]

Rainy Day Fun: Number Hunt

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Easter is over, but my kids are still eager to hunt for things. When the weather is nice we head outside and hunt for bugs and worms and heart-shaped rocks but when it’s raining we hunt for numbers! A number hunt is a great learning-and-playing rainy-day activity. Melissa & Doug Chunky Number Puzzle is the [...]