My Top 10 Favorite Instagramers

My Top 10 Favorite Instagramers

I’m fairly new to Instagram — about two years now — and it’s becoming one of my favorite social media platforms to meet and really get to know bloggers, authors, illustrators, and moms. I like how quickly an image can convey a message and how easy it is to comment and follow the commentary.

Here’s a small sampling of who I love. It’s pretty impossible to pick just 10 but that’s what I did today. I could probably keep this kind of post up weekly for months! How about you? Who do you recommend?


My Top 10 Favorite Instagramers

You might recognize these illustrators from children’s books but follow them for their amazing doodles.

1. Lori Nichols. I love her hyperlapse drawing videos. She’s a fun illustrator to watch in action!

Lori Nichols

2. Inky Girl. Debbie Ridpath Ohi plays with her food, making for whimsical drawings.

inky girl debbie ohi

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Top 10: Best Native American Books for Kids

Top 10: Best Native American Books for Kids (newly improved!)

I, along with Jump Into a Book, Franticmommy, am working on a Multicultural Children’s Book Day eBook of diversity, multicultural, and inclusive books lists from bloggers and authors including: All Done Monkey, Books My Kids Read, Crafty Moms Share, Colours of Us, The Educators’ Spin On It, Growing Book by Book, Imagination Soup, InCulture Parent, The Jenny Evolution, Kid World Citizen, The Logonauts, Mama SmilesMarie Pastiche, The Measured Mom, Randomly Reading, What Do We Do All Day?,Youth Literature Reviews, author Elsa Marson, and author Uma Krishnaswami.

I’ll be contributing a few book lists to contribute and I’m updating them to reflect nuances that I’ve learned through my journey of blogging. In the case of Native American books for children, I wanted to emphasize contemporary stories as some kids including my own, think that American Indians are a relic from the past.

 

10. Thunder Boy Jr. by Sherman Alexie, illustrated by Yuyi Morales

Sherman Alexie’s first picture book reflects on his Spokane Native American tradition of getting a new name to mark the transition to adulthood. There are 500 federally recognized tribal nations in the United States, each with its own diversity of language, ceremonies, and naming. To respect the deeper meaning of the naming, classroom activities where kids pick their own Indian names are not recommended as it is not culturally sensitive. This is a delightful and funny picture book sure to engage kids. The vibrant illustrations by Caldecott illustrator Yuyi Morales perfectly match the story. [picture book, ages 4 and up]

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Four Cookbook giveaway

4 Cookbook GIVEAWAY!

I’m cleaning out my office and giving away these four brand new cookbooks (I have two copies of Katie Chin’s Everyday Chinese Cookbook). These cookbooks address a specific audience: kids who want to learn to cook, anyone jumpstarting a diet and exercise plan, and those wanting to cook Chinese food. If any of these cookbooks speak to you, please fill out the Rafflecopter to win and specific your first, second and third choice.

 

The Help Yourself Cookbook for Kids by Ruby Roth

This cook has 60 easy plant-based recipes that kids can make to stay healthy and save the world! Big promises? Perhaps. But getting your kids to cook for themselves is a gift that keeps giving. Ruby Roth makes kid friendly food in this appealing cookbook. Some recipes just require assembly while others will need the stove turned on. Whether you cook these recipes with your kids, or have older kids try on their own, everyone when kids learn a valuable life skill. [cookbook for kids, ages 6 and up]

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100 Fun & Easy Learning Games for Kids GIVEAWAY

100 Fun & Easy Learning Games for Kids GIVEAWAY

Have you met Kim Vij and Amanda Boyarshinov of The Educators’ Spin On It? They are teachers, moms, bloggers (a duo in fact!), and also co-hosts for Multicultural Children’s Book Day.

im Vij and Amanda Boyarshinov of The Educators' Spin On It

I’m proud to know them. They are both wonderfully generous with their time and knowledge. I learned how to improve my Pinterest account from Kim when she did a Google+ Hangout for Multicultural Kid Blogs meet up. I still have my notes from her session.

100 Fun & Easy Learning Games for Kids GIVEAWAYRead more…

Learn About London for Kids

A Fun Way to Learn About London!

This cut paper animation video of the history of London amazed me … and prompted this list. I’ve been to London for a short trip before I had kids, but it’s on my list to visit again! How about you? Have your kids been to London? If so, would they like these books?

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Kid Lit Blog Hop Now MONTHLY!

Kid Lit Blog Hop

Welcome to the Kid Lit Blog Hop! I have been busy making very short videos on picture books. Here’s one picture book discovery:

Excellent Ed by Stacy McAnulty, illustrated by Julia Sarcone-Roach

The Ellis kids are excellent at something: soccer, math, ballet, and baking. Ed the dog tries to figure out his special skill: breaking stuff, losing stuff, forgetting stuff. But the kids are better at that too! Is this why he doesn’t get to eat at the table, ride in the van, or sit on the coach? Or are his skills related to that? [picture book, ages 4 and up]

If you like this video and want to see more, please subscribe to my YouTube channel. Thanks! Read more…

how to set up a blog or website

How to Set Up a Blog (or Website)

If you are thinking of setting up a blog or even a simple website, it’s becoming the same thing. You can set up a blog to use as a website for your small business. Here’s how in three easy steps:

Step 1: Choose Your Blogging Platform. Spoiler alert: Use Self Hosted WordPress.

Step 2: Secure Your Name and Host. Spoiler alert: Make sure your name is available on Twitter and other social media platforms. Use BlueHost.

Step 3: Configure and Design Your Site. Spoiler alert: Make sure your blog/website theme is Responsive.

Ready? Let’s go! Read more…

5th Grade Book Recommendations from My 5th Grader

5th Grade Book Recommendations from My 5th Grader

My son has picked up the pace reading books this year in 5th grade. His book lists are now in three parts.

5th Grade Books from a 5th Grade Boy has books that he read as a rising 5th grader as well as book he read in the early part of the school year. You’ll notice his reluctance to read by all the graphic novels he read. This was also the turning point for novels in verse for him when he discovered The Crossover which lead to more novels in verse.

Best 5th Grade Books from My 5th Grade Son is part 2 of 3. You’ll notice that he likes FUNNY and ACTION ADVENTURE, preferably combined á la Rick Riordan. His 5th grade teacher has him reading historical fiction for the first time which he’s really enjoying. This set us up for more historical fiction and even historical fiction as a novel in verse!

How about you? What do you think he should add to his reading list? I am planning on having him read at least five books this summer.

5th Grade Chapter Books from a 5th Grade Boy

Brooklyn Bat Boy: the Story of the 1947 Season That Changed Baseball Forever by Geoff Griffin

I really liked learning about Jackie Robinson through the perspective of a Irish American bat boy.

Jackie Robinson’s first season with the Brooklyn Dodgers told from the point of view of the new batboy. My son and I loved this historical fiction early chapter book, complete with authentic slang. Pair it with a biography on Jackie Robinson if you  want to learn about this extraordinary man. [early chapter book, ages 8 and up]

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Summer Learning Ideas to Halt Summer Slide

Summer Learning Ideas to Halt Summer Slide

Our school year won’t end until June 23rd which makes my kids and I think that we are the last to finish school this year. Hence, my summer learning plans are a little late in the making this year.

My two teen girls are away most of the summer. Grasshopper and Sensei will do a six-week Pre-College summer session at Rhode Island School of Design. She has some assigned books to read for AP English next fall where she will be a Junior in high school, and she will enter some art competitions.

PickyKidPix did not read enough this past school year while in 8th grade. She’s going to try to read five books this summer. Read more…