Val’s Crafty Corner: Recycled Bead Tray Art Gallery

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This recycled-art project idea is brought to you by Melissa & Doug, written by our Blog Ambassador Valerie Deneen. Have fun exploring art with your kids!   -Val We love our wooden bead sets from Melissa & Doug! The beads are high quality, and the girls enjoy making bracelets and necklaces. Once the beads are all used [...]

Camp Sunny Patch Session 2: Spray Bottle Freeze Tag

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CAMP SUNNY PATCH SESSION 2 is brought to you by Melissa & Doug, written by Camp Counselor (and Melissa & Doug Blog Ambassador!) Amy Mascott. Session 2 of Camp Sunny Patch is here! This week, we’re adding a blast of summer fun to an old favorite by adding spray bottles to the mix. Required Supplies: [...]

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 [...]

Product Sneak Peek: Box Girls Family Road Trip

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Are we there yet? Who cares! We’ve got Box Girls to keep us laughing all the way! The Box Girls Box of QuestionsSets are filled with head-scratching, soul-searching, funny bone–tickling questions to make quality time with family and friends even better. The very latest from The Box Girls—Family Road Trip Box of Questions—helps the miles [...]

5 Ways for Kids to Celebrate Cinco de Mayo

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Learn to count to cinco. Today’s the perfect day to learn some Spanish numbers! Help make a Mexican meal. Burritos, tacos, cornbread . . .  olé! Tonight’s dinner can be a delicious Mexican feast. (Even toddlers can help with a sprinkling of queso.) Make your own piñata. A simple version can be just a paper [...]

(More!) Tricks for Developing Language through Play

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This educational activity is brought to you by Melissa & Doug, written by our Blog Ambassador Amy Mascott. Playtime should be full of fun, but it’s also a super time to sneak in some language learning! Did you totally dig the last Language & Play post? Sure you did! Here are two more tricks for [...]

Skill Building Through Sand Play

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Large Motor Skills Large motor skills develop and strengthen as children dig, scoop, sift, and pour. The whole body can get involved in sand play! Hand-eye Coordination Children develop better control over their small muscles as they practice manipulating sand play toys like funnels, mills, shovels, scoops, and sifters. Social & Emotional Playing together in [...]

Val’s Crafty Corner — Sand Play Bakery!

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This springtime recipe for creative play is brought to you by Melissa & Doug, and is written by our Blog Ambassador Valerie Deneen. Enjoy taking your kids’ creativity outdoors! One of the activities my kids look forward to the most every spring is playing outdoors in the sandbox! They can spend hours happily playing together, engaged in [...]

Read & Play with Allie: Trucks

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Playing with puzzles is a teacher and parent favorite for quiet time, when kids need to calm down. When I taught preschool, after lunch but before nap was always a good time for puzzles because it calmed my students before rest time. But that’s not the only way you can use puzzles; they can be [...]