Homemade Monday: This is Not a Box

How many times have you purchased an expensive new toy for your child only to find them playing with the box  with great enthusiasm leaving the new toy tossed to the side? Why do they do that? What is it about that box that makes it so much more fascinating than the fancy new toy? I think I may have found the answer:

this-is-not-a-boxGraphic Source: http://www.somethingofthatilk.com/

While the toy is really just a toy (unless it’s a set of blocks or Legos or something that could serve more than one purpose), the box is so much more than just a box. It can be a car at the “drive-in” movie theater (your living room); it can be a Jeep on Safari; it can be a secret clubhouse; it can be a super special reading nook. Remember, the simpler the toy the more complex the learning; the more complex the toy, the simpler the learning.

So don’t throw away those boxes from Christmas just yet! Here are a sixty other ideas for cardboard boxes in all sizes from Red Ted Art; just click HERE!

Don’t forget to stop by the library and pick up a book about the fun in a cardboard box.

boxes

Play Provides…

If you have been following this blog the last four months, then you know play is so important in the life of a child, especially in the first three years. Play is learning. Play is exploring. Play is experimenting. Play is fun. I could say more about play, but I found this great graphic that summarizes everything I need to say:

play

An infographic from First Things First.

 

Homemade Monday: Write a Letter

Looking for something creative to do while on Winter Break? Why not write a letter? There’s nothing like running to the mailbox to find a letter from a friend or relative!

letterwritingbooks

Stop by the library and pick up a couple books to inspire your writing. Sitting down at a table, on a couch, or on the floor with your child to write a letter to someone special is a great way to give him or her attention, bond and communicate: the three most important things a child needs.

 

On the Road with Literacy

roadtrippackIt’s that time of year again: time for road trips and family car rides! If you have a long ride in your near future with young children, here is a fun activity for you to do: Read and Write on the Road. Click the link and it will take you to a fantastic pack of cards you can print for free!

In this pack, creator Erin Ring gives parents a selection of ideas to help make the car ride seem a little shorter with games. It requires little more than a printer (to make the cards) and a bag of small goodies: a variety of books, a notepad, pencil, clipboard (or lapboard), and crayons.

Skills in the pack include letter and sound recognition, storytelling and retelling skills, speaking, categorizing, drawing conclusions, and more. This is great for children preschool through third grade.

Did you download it and use it on a roadtrip? Which activity was your favorite?

Wondering what to do today?

What city has the longest name? Do you know? It’s not Cleveland. It’s not Tuscarawas. In fact, it’s not even in the United States. According to the Guinness Book of World Records, the official name for the city of Bangkok in Thailand holds the record for the world’s longest name of a place: Krung Thep Mahanakhon Amon Rattanakosin Mahinthara Yuthaya Mahadilok Phop Noppharat Ratchathani Burirom Udomratchaniwet Mahasathan Amon Piman Awatan Sathit Sakkathattiya Witsanukam Prasit. And this information comes from a neat little corner of the Internet: a place called Wonderopolis.

wonderopolis

Every day the website offers a “Wonder of the Day,” where you and your child can read about a specific topic (today it’s exotic places) and then answers questions about the topic. There are more links to explore after reading the story: links to maps, photographs, words, and more research. But that’s just the Wonder of the Day.

Click on the “Explore Wonders” tab and you’ll find all sorts of questions and topics to explore. Topics on health, social studies, language arts, science, art, music, breakfast, careers, foreign languages, math, vegetables, and more. You can even suggest and vote on what others are wondering. These topics can be sorted by grade level (Pre-Kindergarten through 12th grade) and matched to state Common Core standards.

This is the perfect site to visit while you are stuck indoors due to the cold, snowy weather!

So what do you wonder about? Comment below!