Posts Tagged ‘
family activities ’
Monday, August 6th, 2012
LaLa Lunchbox can be just what your picky eater needs to develop a healthy lifestyle. The app, developed by mom and health-care professional Gillian Fein, is a fun way to guarantee your child’s lunch will end up in their tummy.
“As a mom of two young kids, I know that getting children to eat balanced meals is invariably a struggle for all of us at some point,” Fein says. “But when kids have a say in their meals, they feel empowered and less food is wasted and unwanted.”
LaLa Lunchbox comes with an easy-to-use functionality. The app lets each child create a lunchbox that is personalized by a cute monster avatar; he or she then drags the icon of their preferred food item in each of four categories—fruits, veggies, proteins, and snacks—into their avatar’s mouth. While the app comes with a predetermined set of food options, families can add or remove their own choices to and from the appropriate categories. Each lunchbox, or list, is complete once it contains a variety of four to six items.
Additionally, a calendar function allows the parent to designate each lunchbox to specific weeks, as there’s no doubt your kid will want to switch it up often. A task list feature even lets you check off each item after you drop it into the cart at the grocery store.
Make eating fun for your family today—the app is available for $1.99 on iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad.
For more information, visit www.lalalunchbox.com or follow @LaLaLunchbox on Twitter.
Image: Young girl holding packed lunch in living room smiling, via Shutterstock
Thursday, July 26th, 2012
Editor’s Note: In the first post for an ongoing series, Dr. Harley A. Rotbart, a Parents advisor, will be guest blogging once a month. He will be offering different advice, tips, and personal stories on how parents can “savor the moment” and maximize the time they spend with kids. Read more posts by Harley Rotbart from this series.
Children’s brains go to sleep as soon as school ends for summer vacation, and they can hibernate until after school starts again in the fall. While kids need rest and rejuvenation, structured and unstructured play, physically active and tranquil days, and homework-free evenings, the summer “brain freeze” (a.k.a. “summer meltdown” or “summer slide”) can last too long. When resting brains slip into vegetative states defined by TV, video games, Facebook, text messaging marathons, and MP3 hypnosis, it’s time for an intervention.
Fortunately, there is a cure: enrollment at Family Summer University (FSU)! At FSU, there is no tuition and no homework, but there are tests (more like friendly and funny family competitions) every night.
As Dean of FSU, it’s your job to set aside a little time each day to write the quiz questions. Tailor them to the ages and learning levels of your kids, but don’t be limited to school subjects. Instead, include a wide range of topics: celebrities, cartoon characters, favorite storybooks, sports teams, movies and TV shows, or any other topics that each family member will enjoy. Fun trivia about Justin Bieber and Jeremy Lin can help camouflage the educational lessons about hypotenuses, homonyms, and Hamlet. Mix and match questions every night from different subject areas or dedicate different nights of the week to certain subjects.
Look to brain teaser games, flash card sets, home versions of TV quiz shows, the library, the internet, and yes, your kids’ school books, to write your questions. But don’t overdo it — set a maximum of 20 questions per child per day, 10 questions if you have more than three kids! Remember, if you’re asking your 6 year old a tough question for his age, you should also be asking your 12 year old a tough one for her age.
Once your questions are written, gather the kids on the designated FSU campus (it can be the porch, patio, or another comfortable venue that’s preferably outdoors) and let the games begin! A great time for FSU to gather is after dinner because everyone is already together. Play every night or play a few days a week. Add bonus questions, musical prompts, and picture clues to make the game more interesting. Watch as scarce minutes with your kids turn into special moments.
After the answers are given, discuss them with your kids. Gently explain the questions they missed and have them explain ones they got right. Tally the correct number of answers for each contestant each dayk. At the end of each week, give a prize to the child with the highest score, and then start scoring from scratch the next week. This way, no one falls so far behind that they have no chance of catching up. Good “prizes” can be letting the winner choose the DVD on family movie night or the theme for a special dinner night. At the end of the summer, have an FSU “graduation” ceremony with cardboard caps, bed sheet gowns, and colorful paper diplomas. Then, make sure to go for ice cream!
Dr. Harley A. Rotbart is Professor and Vice Chairman of Pediatrics at the University of Colorado School of Medicine and Children’s Hospital Colorado. He is the author of three books for parents and families, including the recent No Regrets Parenting, a Parents advisor, and a contributor to The New York Times Motherlode blog. Visit his blog at noregretsparenting.com and follow him on Facebook and Twitter (@NoRegretsParent).
Categories: GoodyBlog, Time for Fun, Your Child | Tags: Family, family activities, family fun, family time, Harley Rotbart, harley rotbart series, No Regrets Parenting, parenting, parenting skills, parenting style, parents, summer, summer activities, summer brain drain, summer brain freeze, summer fun, summer slide
Tuesday, July 3rd, 2012
Have some red, white and blue fun as we celebrate our nation’s independence. Indulge in some patriotic pastimes like catching a baseball game or eating a tri-color parfait. Or put together your own mini parade or wave homemade parade batons at your neighborhood celebration.
Check out more Fourth of July activities, crafts, and recipes below.
Fourth of July Activities
Fourth of July Crafts
Fourth of July Recipes
Monday, June 4th, 2012
Is your preschooler starting kindergarten this year? Just in time for summer, prepare your little one for class with the fun learning activities contained in a Wonder Box. Created by Education.com, which provides helpful content about preparing for kindergarten through college, Wonder Box is a subscription-based monthly service designed to enrich and entertain children ages 3 to 6. (A monthly subscription starts at $19.99.)
Each month, a box with a different theme (science, crafts, etc.), 3 projects, and other extras (coloring pages, sticker books, etc.) are hand-picked by Education.com experts with the goal of developing your child. The boxes are sent to homes with provided instructions and information about accessing an exclusive website for more activity ideas.
Recently, I got a sneak peek at the first available Wonder Box, which has a “Once Upon a Time” theme. The 3 projects includes a cape to enhance gross motor skills, a puppet to help with shape and pattern recognition, and a pack of story cards to increase reading skills. A story book of “Stone Soup” is included with crayons for coloring.
For busy, on-the-go parents, Wonder Box provides easy, convenient access to a variety of activities and crafts. Families can have quality time together and kids will satisfy their curiosity about the world around them.
Categories: Crafts, GoodyBlog, Time for Fun | Tags: activities, education, education.com, educational activities, family activities, kindergarten, learning activities, preparing for kindergarten, wonder box
Wednesday, May 25th, 2011
With summer vacation just around the corner, it’s time to start thinking up fun activities to fend off the inevitable “I’m bored” whining. Enter Kids Bowl Free, a bowling program in which hundred of alleys across the US (and Canada) allow children to play two games a day—gratis—all summer long. Better still, the program is already up and running for the season in some locations. To register for a pass and find a participating bowling center near you (as well as get program dates, times, and age requirements, which vary by location), visit kidsbowlfree.com.
Monday, November 30th, 2009
This Week’s Big-Screen Goody:
Vampires, werewolves, and aliens, oh my! It’s getting a little freaky at the box office this weekend. Your kids might beg to see the uber-hyped–and unintentionally funny–Twilight: New Moon (rated PG 13). Some moms might even consider it–you know who you are (I’m Team Jacob, BTW). But the animated alien adventure, Planet 51 (rated PG), is probably the safer supernatural bet for families with younger kids.
This Week’s DVD Goodies:
Ben 10: Alien Force, Vol. 5
Dragon Ball Z: Dragon Box One
Pahappahooey Island: Do It Afraid!
The Smurfs: World of Wonders
The Spectacular Spider-Man, Vol. 5
The Put-Your-Kids-to-Bed-First Picks of the Week:
(Serious Drama Pick)
My Sister’s Keeper
(Seriously Cool Pick)
Monday, November 30th, 2009
This Week’s Birthday Goody:
This post is brought to you by the letters H and S and the numbers 4 and 0 for Happy 40th, Sesame Street!!! That’s right–everyone’s favorite preschool TV program has hit middle age, which means most of you reading this also watched the show growing up. And to celebrate this awesome anniversary, you can share some of the greatest moments with your kids, thanks to Sesame Street: 40 Years of Sunny Days.
This Week’s Big-Screen Goody:
Fantastic Mr. Fox (rated PG, limited release until Nov. 25th)
This Week’s DVD Goodies:
The Christmas Clause
Dragon Ball: Season Two
Franklin: Franklin’s Magic Christmas
Justice League: The Complete Series
Naruto: Shippuden The Movie
The Sarah Jane Adventures: The Complete Second Season
Sesame Street: 40 Years of Sunny Days
SpongeBob SquarePants: Truth or Square
The Put-Your-Kids-to-Bed-First Pick of the Week:
Watchmen: The Ultimate Cut