Sneaking Therapy into Your Playtime

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Integrating therapy practice into your everyday home activities is a great way to keep your child motivated and on task. Simply following the lead and interests of your child can open up exciting possibilities for reaching countless therapy goals. Pretending to grocery shop is one way that Anchel Krishna and her husband Dilip work on [...]

Baking with Kids: 3 Themed Learning Activities

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These “Baking with Kids” activities are from our special guest blogger Genny Upton (In Lieu of Preschool and Parent Teach Play.) My kids love helping in the kitchen, and it is such a great way to incorporate learning into everyday life! This week we baked blueberry banana muffins. Then we took the learning further with some extension activities: [...]

3 Simple Tips to Develop Your Child’s Oral Motor Skills

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Practicing oral motor skills might sound like “work,” but you can easily do it during everyday activities you already do with your child. Here’s 3 simple tips to practice oral motor skills during meal time and play time: Drinking through a straw: Have your child use a straw when drinking to strengthen oral motor muscles. [...]

A Springtime Sensory Walk for Kids

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Written for Melissa & Doug by special Guest Blogger Julie Kieras from HappyStongHome. This season, why not embark on a springtime sensory walk with your kids? You don’t have to look far for signs of spring. Warmer temps, a bit of green. The return of the birds. And rain showers, of course! We couldn’t help but get the hop on [...]

2 Play-Based Tools for Oral Motor Success!

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Children need to build their oral motor skills to eat, swallow, speak, and make facial expressions (to say the least!)  To do all of these properly, children must first develop awareness, strength, and control of the muscles in their face and mouth. Activities that require children to use pursed lips — such as playing certain wind [...]

4 Early Literacy Activities

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Preschoolers need to master a variety of skills to become fluent readers. The literacy activities listed below are so enjoyable; children do not even know that they are practicing several important early literacy skills: vocabulary development, print motivation, print awareness, narrative skills, phonological awareness, and letter knowledge. (By special guest blogger Melissa Lennig.) 1. Memory games [...]

Rainbow Rice Sensory Activity

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Sensory projects are the perfect activity to focus and calm children. In addition to creating sensory bins, an activity using a variety of materials that children can manipulate with their hands is also a fun after-school or weekend craft. This rainbow rice sensory activity is a quick and easy project, plus you can use the rice in a [...]

Why Do Babies Love Mirror Toys?

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As any parent knows, babies just LOVE to see themselves in their mirror toys. What could be more interesting and relatable to babies than another baby reflected back at them — who looks, feels, and moves just as they do? Sure, babies are attracted to mirrors because they are shiny and bright. But mirrors are [...]

Rainbow Beads Scavenger Hunt

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This post was written by our special guest blogger Adrienne (TheIowaFarmersWife). To celebrate St. Patrick’s Day (and rainbows in general), I created a Rainbow Beads Scavenger Hunt for my kids using Melissa & Doug Primary Lacing Beads. Both of my kids, who are 3 and 17 months, had fun with this activity while working on the [...]