5 Everyday Tips for Building Your Kids’ Emotional Intelligence

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Happy Columbus Day! It’s been over 500 years now since Christopher Columbus landed on American shores, “discovering” the New World and laying the groundwork for another October school holiday. Whichever side of the story you’re celebrating today, we wish you lots of happy family playtime! In the spirit of discovery, this week’s blog posts will [...]

Best Toys Guide Names “Suspend” a Top Toy for Christmas 2012!

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Recently, Best Toys Guide unveiled its “30 Hot Toys for Christmas 2012.” We were so pleased see their announcement of Melissa & Doug’s Suspend game as a featured toy! Since its release, Suspend has made waves – receiving lots of praise for its innovative approach to family fun night. Best Toys Guide calls it “THE new game to [...]

Let Your Kids’ Personalities Shine!

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Join us in celebrating this week’s play theme: personality! All week, we’ll talk about ways to nurture individualism, show off personal style, and honor our kids’ unique ways of learning. We’ll post special activity ideas designed to boost self-confidence, build communication skills, and customize learning. We’re so excited to share our ideas with you—check in [...]

This Week on the Melissa & Doug Blog: Dance to the Music!

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Admit it: we’ve all had fabulous dance parties with our little ones. Ones where we bang on tabletops, clank on instruments, or just turn the radio up and stomp around the living room. But did you know that all this boogie-down fun also has wonderful educational benefits for your child? The power of music in your child’s [...]

5 New Ways To Use : Geometric Stacker

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This educational idea is brought to you by Melissa & Doug , written by our Blog Ambassador Allison McDonald. “Everyday play is what childhood should be about.” Geometric Stackers were always classroom favorites while I was teaching preschool. They offer so many ways to teach children in one simple toy. Now that I am a [...]

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 [...]

Melissa & Doug Unit Blocks Week: Mixing It Up with Pretend Play

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Previously during our special “We Love Unit Blocks” week posts, we have shared a bit about the history of Unit Blocks, as well as some ways your little builders can play (and learn!) using various “Blueprint” activities.  Now, let’s have a little fun with pretend play! Blocks come in all shapes and sizes, all colors [...]

Melissa & Doug Unit Blocks Week: Blueprint for Block Fun

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If your little builders are ready to take their block play to another level, try creating a set of “plans” for them to follow.  Here are a few “blueprint” activities we especially like: 1. FLOORPLAN: Trace a building (or wall, shape, or pattern) on a piece of extra-large construction paper and ask the child to [...]