Teaching Young Children About Race and Racism With Art

The first step in discussing race with young children is talking about the differences. What better way to have this conversation through art? 

When children ask about different colors of skin, take the opportunity to discuss what melanin is and how wonderful the world is with all different kinds of people. 

While it may seem touchy to some of us, children enjoy mixing and matching skin tone colors to match what they see in the world.

Here are some great art supplies to practice with and have conversations about!

Be a model for the attitude, behavior, and values you want to instill in your children!

Here are our favorites:

Multicultural Crayons

Pebble Crayons

Washable Markers

Skin Tone Tempera Paints

Multicultural Pencils

High-Quality Thick Pencils

People Cutouts

Skin Tone Construction Paper

 

 

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5 Things Moms Need During Quarantine!

 

WOW! These things have been life-changing over the past month! During quarantine, there are just some items that make life easier. Moms, I hope this list helps you!

First, here's the FREE Play Presents eBook Link - available for a limited time!

These are the things we need, Mamas!

Note: if you decide to view and purchase some of these items, I may get paid a small amount, but your price will not increase. Thank you for your support! I made this list without knowing if any of these had affiliate programs or links.

1. Dustbuster

2. Joggers

3. Monopoly - so many versions to choose from!

4. Recipe Book

5. Hair Lightener and Dry Shampoo

Bonus - Journaling each morning has done wonders for my mindset and for our family. I start by writing down my dream from the night before. Then, I reframe any negative thoughts on my mind.

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Easy Homeschooling During Coronavirus - Using Minecraft

 

Here's what we're doing to get in our "homeschooling" of reading, writing, and math skills during the quarantine for coronavirus. We even used Minecraft as inspiration to get our kids writing stories!

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How to Teach Growth Mindset to Kids at Home Using Journaling

How can we teach our kids the growth mindset when we've been raised only knowing about a fixed mindset?

It's a lot easier with tools!

That's why I created this video about my favorite journals to use with little kids.

It's not what you might think!

Reinforcing the growth mindset at home is important so kids can adopt it as their way of thinking. 

A growth mindset is a belief that our brain grows through practice and work, that we're not born with all of our talent and abilities.

 Are you teaching your kids to use a growth mindset? 

Here are the resources mentioned in the video for you!

These are Amazon links, so if you purchase through here, at no charge to you, you get to support me creating more info like this for you! 

Blank Journals

Unlined Blank Journals

Two Minute Morning Journal

3 Minute Journal

Wreck This Journal

Big Life Journal

 

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5 Ways to Make Healthy Snacks for Picky Eaters

Do you have a picky eater at home?

Get 5 tips for getting them to eat healthy snacks in this video version:



Or read on for the printed version!

Whenever I'm going anywhere for more than an hour, I make sure to take snacks along to keep their bellies full. Here in America, what's marketed as snack foods aren't exactly the healthiest. Healthy snacks should really be mini-meals made up of healthy fat, a protein, and a carbohydrate. Snacks like this slow digestion and help kids stay full longer. It also helps to avoid sugar highs and sugar crashes.

I look at snack time as a great time to get more nutrition into their little bodies. So I've got five tips for you to get your kids eating healthy snacks.

Use fun tools. 

We like to use little food picks, skewers, toothpicks, or mini forks. Edible candy google eyes make snacks super cute.

Use dips!

For protein, use Greek yogurt, nut butter, cheese sauce, or a cream cheese spread. Lots of kids like whipped cream or ketchup. Make...

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5 Healthy School Lunch Ideas for Your Preschooler, Kindergartener, or Elementary School Aged Child

Are you looking for inspiration on how to get your kids' lunches packed quickly and easily? Today I'm sharing five healthy school lunch ideas for kids in kindergarten and early elementary school. Check out the video to see it all in action - or scroll down for details on each lunch.



Our kids are now five, eight and nine. And up until two years ago, their lunches would come home and they would not be eaten. They'd be half eaten.

Our oldest always wanted to play instead of eat.

Our middle child sometimes had trouble finding everything in her lunch with all the different containers.

And our youngest, this has been a long journey, but he's been in food therapy for a number of years. 

Our youngest used to eat only five to six foods and that was it, and so it's been a long struggle getting him on track. But one of the easiest ways to get him on track was to give him foods that he liked in his lunch, but then also add one or two things that he was kind of okay with, and...

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Frozen Butterbeer From Harry Potter - So Easy Your Kids Can Make It!

We have a Harry Potter fan in this house!

For her 8th birthday, we took our little one to Universal Studios to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. We all fell in love with the delicious frozen butterbeer served there.

We got home and tested a few different recipes, and settled on this lower-sugar version that the kids ask to make constantly!

Check out the video to see how to make it! The recipe is below.

 

Harry Potter Frozen Butterbeer Recipe (serves 3-4)

1/2 cup vanilla ice cream

3/4 - 1 cup whipped cream

2 cups cream soda (for lower calorie/sugar use Zevia or similar)

1 tbsp butterscotch or caramel syrup

 

1. Freeze 1/2 cup cream soda in an ice cube tray.

2. Add all ingredients to high-speed blender, reserving 3/4 cup whipped cream for topping.

3. Blend on ice crush/milkshake setting.

4. Pour in chilled mugs, top with 1/4 cup whipped cream, and enjoy!

 

It's been a fun treat for the family all summer! 

What's your favorite summer treat?

 

 

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A Better Toy for Travel Than LEGO: Plus Plus Blocks Ideas

Do you wish your kids would play with something other than LEGO? Mix it up with this building toy, perfect for ages 3-10 years! This toy is great for creative thinking and it's wonderful for travel, for playing at a siblings practice, or for playing at home.

In this video, you'll learn what Plus Plus Blocks are, why you should try them out, and the favorite things our kids build with them:



What are Plus-Plus Blocks?

They are little plus signs that allow kids to build in all directions.

Why do we love them?

1. Perfect for grabbing on the go, the tube packaging is easy to stuff into a bag or large purse and run out the door. It's no big deal if a few are lost because they are all the same! I've spent hours looking in the grass for a dropped LEGO!

2. Great for all ages - they have larger pieces for young kids, and the regular sets are even fun for adults!

3. They don't hurt if you accidentally step on one!

What do we build?

People, robots, humans, dogs, eagles, babies, animals,...

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3 Easy Ways to Foster A Love of Reading in Your Preschooler

We just got back from a trip to visit my brother and his family in Minnesota.

Their 5-year-old and 7-year-old wake up in the morning and read chapter books. They ride in the car and read chapter books. They bring books along everywhere and literally read for fun often throughout the day.

Our daughter also loves to read, but our 9-year-old son just started liking books and our 5-year-old rarely pick up books for fun. Here are three tools we've used to foster reading when we can't read aloud. 

Here's the video, with all the details!

For easy reference, here are the tools mentioned:

1. LeapReader Pen and Books

2. meReader Book Packs

3. Starfall app

4. Fun With Dick & Jane Books

These tools are great, but the most important thing you can do for a pre-reader is READ ALOUD often. This book is a handy resource to have available for reference on which books work for which ages. 

It states the commonalities early readers have are:

1. Was often read to.

2....

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The Secret Building Toy Our Oldest Likes Better Than LEGO!

There's more to building toys than basic blocks and LEGO. Our oldest child started with this toy at age four and is still building with it five years later!

What in the world could it be? It's called: ZOOBs. I found them on super sale a few years ago and I kind of bought them on a whim. But what was surprising to me was how much our son absolutely loved them. He would lie in bed for hours and build.

What makes them unique is the pieces that you use to build. They have five different pieces that join together in different ways, a few with round balls on one end. What you can do is join these pieces together in different ways to make toys that can move and swing and have a rotation in all sorts of directions.

ZOOBs are perfect for preschool to early elementary kids. So ages four to ten. If you have a child who's under the age of four, it's not that they can't use them because as you can see the pieces are pretty big, but it takes a lot of small motor skills and strength...

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