Posts Tagged ‘
getting your kids to do stuff ’
Wednesday, February 18th, 2009
One of the most rewarding aspects of our job in magazines is reading happy, positive reader mail. As the crafts editor, I'm lucky enough to get a visual of the success story, like this sweet photo from Parents reader Megan Grebowiec from Plainville, Kansas. Megan and her 3 year old daughter Kaydence crafted the Pom-Pom Pals from our January 2009 issue (and they did so very well, I might add).
If you have photos of your craft accomplishments, please send them to us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We love to see our ideas (and your creativity) in action!
Thursday, January 22nd, 2009
I am signed up for so many newsletters that sometimes, I hit delete before I read them. But today I happened to open one that I get periodically, and I was reminded why I signed up for it in the first place. It's called Yummy Fun—it's all about kids and cooking. Besides the fact that the website is amazingly fun and clever, Yummyclare, the creator, has developed a magical, interactive cooking (or as she spells it, kooking) show for kids. You can watch the trailer on her site or here. It's like Willy Wonka meets Mr. Magorium meets The Barefoot Contessa (sort of).
Her show is not on TV (yet) but you can buy DVD's. Check out her site with your kids—they will be mesmorized!
(PS…look out for the March issue of Parents magazine, where we have a great article called America's Tot Chef!)
Monday, January 5th, 2009
I completely heart this kids' thank you idea from the fabulous Amy at doobleh-vay. Her picture says it all, really, but in case you want a play-by-play, she's got instructions. What a perfect way to help your kids say thanks for their holiday presents and send some immediate gratification Grandma's way.
Tuesday, December 30th, 2008
We are well into the second week of winter break, and I'd be willing to bet that many of you are trying to keep the kids from swinging from the chandelier. Don't worry…it's okay to admit that they're driving you a little batty. If you are in need of some fun, inexpensive home activities, check out this list from Destroydebt.com of 20 boredom busters; here are some of my faves…
- Soda bottle bowling: Raid the recycling bin for empty plastic
soda bottles. Set them up like bowling pins and roll a ball at them like you're
bowling. Make the game more challenging by adding some water to
the bottom of the soda bottles (if you still have the caps!) or by
- Bottle cap Shuffleboard: Create a triangle on the end of the
kitchen table out of painter's tape, and divide into 3 sections:
the tip of the triangle is worth 30 points, the center is worth 20
points, and the larger base of the triangle is worth 10 points. On the
other end of the kitchen table, place a piece of tape to create the
push-off line. Use bottle caps and push them so they slide
from the push-off line toward the triangle. Players can push another
player's cap off the triangle and the winner
is the person who reaches 200 points first.
- Animate a stick figure: Find a pad of paper or a post-it pack.
Start in one corner of the page and draw a stick figure. Lift up the
page and draw the same figure on the next page, but move an arm or leg
just slightly, and continue on each page of the pack. On each page,
you'll draw your stick figure just positioned a little differently.
When you flip the pages with your thumb, you'll have an animated stick
- Build an indoor “snow” fort: For some reason, kids love to
build forts. Give them some blankets to hang on the back of chairs,
couches and other items to hide underneath. Give each child a box or
bag of crumpled up newspaper “snow balls” and let them have an indoor
snow fight. Forts are great for playing house, or any number of
activities active imaginations can drum up.
- Find it in print: Gather some books, magazines and newspapers.
Have the kids go on a “Where's Waldo” type adventure, finding various
things in print that you call out, try: things that move, things that bark, animals that eat meat, something you find in a kitchen, things that breathe.
If you have any boredom cures you'd like to share, please do! I'm sure your fellow parents would appreciate any help they can get!
Tuesday, September 30th, 2008
Today is Fun! Could there be a more fun blog name than that? The site features one great thing to do with your kids every day. Tip-toeing, magnifying glass exploration, DIY parachutes, sticky note treasure hunts… Hello, jackpot! Kudos to Design Mom for this seriously good find. It’s a must-bookmark for those "I’m bored, Mom!" days.
Thursday, September 11th, 2008
I’ve posted before about schools rewarding top of the class students with Happy Meals, and here’s another get-good-grades tactic I’d love you all to weigh in on: paying kids for As. This USAToday article discusses how many CEOs use financial incentives (and we’re not talking a buck or two) to motivate their kids to get high GPAs. Granted, these families have larger than average piggy banks to dig into, but what do you think? Is cash the cure for poor report cards, or do you think equating money with grades takes away from the real purpose of learning?
Wednesday, September 3rd, 2008
When people hear the words pasta crafts, they immediately think of retro macaroni necklaces that most moms wear with an bit of pride and a bit of, well, fashion hesitation.
Check out the September issue of Parents mag where we took pasta crafts to a new level. I mean, look at this train set—have you ever? These 6 ideas are great birthday party activities or simple, accessible rainy day crafts.
PS…For these projects we painted the noodles in the old-school way with tempera paint and a brush, but if you are mass producing pasta fashions, you may want to try dying your pasta in large batches, as seen on The Crafty Crow.
Tuesday, July 1st, 2008
Our little Emily was wide awake last night after her "nighty night feeding." Mommy and Daddy, however, were ready to drop like a sack of lead bricks. So, I figured I’d try something that helped Daddy sleep during his caffeine-addled college years: Brian Eno’s Ambient 1: Music for Airports. Within minutes, Emily drifted into a sleepy baby coma.
Once we had her in the bassinet, I loaded Music for Airports into an iPod and brought it into the bedroom along with our iPod boombox. In order to test out my hypothesis, I’d leave it off and shortly afterward Emily got fussy. I turned it on, sweet blissful rest.
I don’t know if this will work for everyone—and it may not work long for us—but it seems to work now. Besides, if you’re into electronic music, this album is a pivotal one in the development of the genre. And even if you’re not into electronica, it’s nice to listen to when you need to chill out and you want something gentle in the background.