Archive for January, 2012

Visiting the Nutritionist Deja Vu

Nutritionist Advice for Healthy Kids

Is it me or is it weird to visit two different nutritionists for the same child — at age 2 because she is underweight and then at age 8 because she is overweight?  The first visit to the nutritionist, we were skeptical parents:  show me a growth chart for an Asian girl and THEN tell me she’s underweight.  We could be a little haughty … “she’s not underweight and we’re NOT adding oil back to her food!”   Instead, we  fed her more pasta.  She always well when it was spaghetti. Read more…

book club for kids, creating book club for kids, setting up book club for kids, easy book club for kids

How To: Create a Great Kids’ Book Club (Activity and Book Suggestions)

I  run two book clubs for my kids and participates in a book club for my last kid.  My kids say that our book club is their very favorite activity in the entire world.  I notice that there seem to be two schools of thought when creating a book club.  One version is a parent/child book club that tends to be a little more structured and literary.  My book clubs are more along the lines of an organized play group centered around creating interest in reading.

In today’s post I’ll go over:

  • Ideas for Books, Activities and Snack
  • Easy Kids Book Club Idea
  • Over 20 Great Activities from Successful Book Club Meetings built around the book’s theme

Book Club for Kids: Ideas for Books, Activities and Snack

If you are thinking of creating a book club for your child, some advice:

  • Defining the group will help alleviate hurt feelings later on.  For example, my two book clubs are centered around a group of kids who are all friends from a particular class .  My preschooler’s book club is defined by all the kids who will attend the same elementary school one day.
  • 4-7 seems to be a good size for a book club.  Start smaller if the kids are younger.  You can go bigger if you require an adult in attendance for all book clubs.
  • Choose a group of compatible kids AND moms (or adults) even if it’s a kids-only book club.
  • Length of book club is as short as one hour to as long as a sleepover, but 2 hours is a good general timeframe as book clubs are kind of like a small birthday party.
  • For my book clubs, the hosting family chooses the book and supplies it for all the members. For other book clubs, the host mom might buy copies of the book for everyone, but each parent pays her back.  If a book club kid already owns the book, it’s one less the host needs to buy.  Sometimes the kid chooses the book, sometimes there are suggestions from the organizer to choose from, and sometimes the parent picks the book — it’s all good!

Read more…

Penderwicks, Chapter book, Dark Matter,

The Penderwicks and Science of Dark Matter

Science in Chapter Books Like Penderwicks

I am a HUGE fan of The Penderwicks series by Jeanne  Birdsall. I love them all, but the second book, The Penderwicks on Gardam Street,  is my favorite. In this book, Mr. Penderwick goes on the dating circuit, much to his (and his daughters’) chagrin. The Penderwicks are back at home after the summer at Arudel (first book) in Western Massachusetts on Gardam Street. It  sounds like the perfect neighborhood full of pseudo big brother type neighbors. Not the kind that are spying on you but there IS spying going on in the book … I mean the big-brother-that-you-wished-you-always-had kind. Their neighbor Nick fits the bill as coach-t0-all. Read more…

books that teach compassion, books for kids that teach compassion, teaching kids empathy

Top 10: Books That Teach Kids Compassion (ages 2-14)

Books That Teach Kids Compassion

Learning about our differences can be a powerful way for children to see from another person’s point of view.  I encourage all parents to introduce some of these chapter books or others like these to their children and use these stories as a reference when children bring up differences in school, particularly with special needs classmates.  Because how great would it be if it were OUR child who can reach out with compassion like MacKenzie in The Friendship Puzzle?! Read more…

Doug Copp, Triangle of Life, earthquake safety, earthquake safety fraud

How to: Survive an Earthquake – Doug Copp Triangle of Life FRAUD

Triangle of Life Earthquake Survival a Fraud

My sister who lives in Southern California sent me this but now I found out that  DOUG COPP’S TRIANGLE OF LIFE THEORY IS A FRAUD!!!  Sorry to post incorrect information previously! Read more…

First Art, Sarah Dimmeo, pragmatic mom

Top 10: Children’s Art Books

Best Art Books for Kids

Please welcome guest author, Sarah Pinneo.  She is the author of Julia’s Child which will be released in January of 2012 by Penguin Books.  She is also the author of The Ski House Cookbook which has delectable cold weather food.  I am personally really excited for this post because my oldest is a budding artist and Sarah’s book recommendations are fabulous.  I will be purchasing Ed Emberley’s Drawing Book of Faces and Rosie Dickens’ Art Treasury for her!  Thank you, Sarah, for sharing this! Read more…

Nerd Camp, chapter books

6th Grade Girl Reviews Middle Grade Chapter Books

6th Grade Book Reviews by a 6th Grader

Please welcome my Mom Friend and yoga teacher‘s daughter Ajani who is a voracious reader, reading secretly in bed with a flashlight under the covers, way past her bedtime. She reviews four books that she borrowed from me this past summer and returns them to me along with her book reviews. She thinks these are great chapter books for 4th grade through 6th grade. Thanks Ajani! Read more…

Cosmic, books like Roald Dahl,

Chapter Books like Charlie and the Chocolate Factory

Books Like Charlie and the Chocolate Factory

My middle child, and her entire third grade class it seems, loves Roald Dahl. She worked her way through most of his chapter books before moving on to new authors. There is something about quirky characters, children who are single parented or orphaned, and a seemingly impossible challenge that are central themes to any Dahl book. Read more…