All posts tagged featured

Multicultural Children's Book Day

How to Get Involved with Multicultural Children’s Book Day

Now more than ever…

Now more than ever, children need to see themselves reflected in the pages of the books they read.

Readers of all ages need to be able to “read their world” to both see themselves, and those are who different, whether by culture, religion, sexual orientation, special needs or ethnicity.

Multicultural Children’s Book Day is proud to offer an initiative and holiday that encourages discovery, hope, acceptance and exploration through the pages of diverse children’s literature.

As our fourth Multicultural Children’s Book Day holiday approaches on January 27, 2017, we are thrilled to have you as part of our amazing community of supporters!

With enthusiasm, optimism and hope, we are preparing for MCBD 2017 and hope you will, again, join our celebration of diversity through children’s books. Read more…

Our Art Gift Kits for Arty Kids

Our Art Gift Kits for Arty Kids

These are art kits that my daughter and I put together when I realized that our lists might be overwhelming: 45 Art Gifts for Seriously Arty Kids by my daughter, and 10 Inspirational Art Books for Arty Kids.

p.s. More art gift posts:

Art Activity Books

Gifts for Kids Who Hate Art and Reading

Art Kit To Encourage Creativity

 + = a book of fun art games plus washable markers makes a great art gift for on the go that the entire family can enjoy if you just add some blank paper. This DIY art kit is $17.

Tangle Art by Jeanette Nyberg Read more…

Multicultural Children's Book Day

FREE Diversity Book for Multicultural Children’s Book Day

Welcome to our upcoming Multicultural Children’s Book Day on January 27th, 2017! We are so excited for our fourth year that we are changing things up so that we can provide more diversity children’s books to parents, caregivers, guardians, librarians, and teachers.

Multicultural Children's Book Day

In years past, we asked for BLOGGERS to sign up to receive a free book in return for a review on their blog which they linked up on January 27th. This year, we are thrilled to expand our invitation for a FREE diversity book to parents, caregivers, guardians, librarians, teachers, and, of course, bloggers! Instead of limiting the book review and optional book extension activity to blog posts, we are expanding it to social media platforms: Instagram, Facebook and YouTube! Read more…

STEM Toy Gift Guide

STEM Toy Gift Guide

With my son as a guinea pig, we’ve been busy testing STEM toys to discover his favorites.

STEM Toy Gift Guide

DIY Electro Dough Kit

This is, hands down, our favorite kit. Note that the kit has everything that you need EXCEPT for the playdoh. Purchase that seperately — you don’t need much — or make your own. You can use this kit over and over again too. At $30, it’s well priced.

DIY Electro Dough Kit STEM toy for kids

Venus Fly Trap Plant

This kit includes everything you need to assemble a successful terrarium for your Venus Fly Trap. You get a 2 inch plant, a five inch globe terrarium, and the soil. The kit is $22. Pair with a book to learn more about the fascinating Venus Fly Trap!

Read more…

17 Great Books for Kids and Teens on the Arab World

What Do Muslims Really Want Anyway?! 17 Books on Muslim World for Kids

Please welcome my guest poster today, author Elsa Marston who is my resident Middle Eastern Children’s literature go to! She has a list of recommended books for kids and teens at the bottom of the post.

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Lately we’ve been reading about terrorist actions by Muslims in Europe and other places, events that have again raised anger and confusion. Are Muslims really committed to hostility toward other religions? Or do most Muslims want to find common ground and live together with non-Muslims, without fear or threats? Read more…

10 Perfect Read Alouds for 4th Grade

10 Perfect Read Alouds for 4th Grade

Fourth grade at my elementary school marks a really interesting immigration unit that introduced my kids to their first group project experience. They learned, the hard way, about freeloaders but the end result was a “Wax Museum” where each child played a wax statue that, when prompted by dropping in a fake coin in a bucket, recited a speech about life as a new immigrant. Each group chose a different country to emigrate from that included Poland, Ireland, Italy, China, Japan and more.  They also created a Wax Museum display bulletin board that talked about the immigrant experience from their country. What was most noticeable was how every, single group talked about the racism and prejudice they faced upon coming to America.

It seems that in fourth grade, kids are starting to really develop empathy skills so historical fiction about immigration or the mistreatment of dogs moves them deeply. I’ve included the books that my kids remember reading as part of a classroom assignment or as a read aloud in 4th grade and added a few of my favorites. My son just started 4th grade this year, so I will keep track of his classroom read alouds and will add them to this list all year.

Please share your ideas for 4th grade read alouds. Thank you! Read more…

10 Perfect Read Aloud Books for 2nd Grade

10 Perfect Read Aloud Books for 2nd Grade

I chose a collection of some of my favorite chapter books and picture books for second grade read alouds. Truth be told, I don’t really remember exactly what books my kids were read to in the classroom during 2nd grade. For some reason, it’s drawing a blank at our house.

Second grade at our elementary school is memorable for foreign country unit. The kids study China, Ghana and Mexico. I have the Red Envelope Crafts project (can also be used for Chinese New Year) that I presented for my son’s class, and the Mexican Crafts Party (can also be used for Cinco de Mayo). Read more…

Top 10 Life Skills Kids Need Before College,

Top 10 Life Skills Kids Need Before College

My book list of Top 10 Books to Teach Kids to Be More Responsible made me start to think about life skills that kids need before going off to college. That and the fact that my oldest, Grasshopper and Sensei, will be starting high school next fall so we have only 4 years to tackle this list!

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What are the life skills that you think kids need before leaving the nest? Do you remember struggling with any life skills while in college? Please share! Read more…

Getting Kids Reading 12 sure fire ways to get kids reading

Get Kids Reading Strategies: 12 Surefire Ways

I searched five years of digital photographs looking for photos of my kids reading and I only came up with the handful here. Why? It’s not easy getting kids reading, especially to love reading enough that they choose it over more exciting things like screens, playdates or sports!

I started my blog after my oldest had a bad year in first grade. She was a reluctant reader who hated the performance aspect of reading out loud. My second child who is academic preferred less “sitty” past times than reading. She never stops moving so it’s hard to pin her down to read. My son much prefers screens to anything else in life so it’s a challenge to get him to exchange a book for a screen.

Over the years, I have tried EVERYTHING to get my kids to love reading. And that might be the key to eventual success. There is no magic bullet but effort counts. And now, I’m happy to report that my oldest (Grasshopper and Sensei), now  in 8th grade, is a voracious reader. By 3rd grade we had turned the corner enough so that she started posting on her favorite chapter books. Read more…