Archives for category: home school

how-to-catch-a-leprechaun

It has been said that if you’re lucky enough to catch a leprechaun, he not only grants wishes, but surrenders his pot of gold.  Holy Leap’n Leprechauns Batman! Did you ever think that you could really catch one?

The Suburban Mom will show you how you can, and if you want to catch a leprechaun, there’s no time to be a wasting.

Can you keep a little secret?  Good, then this is just between us. Jen, the creator of this terrific trap reveals, “of course, you can’t actually catch a leprechaun (they are too quick)”.  She says: “if you are lucky, he will leave behind a few gold coins (AKA shinny pennies, gold chocolate coins, etc) as evidence of his quick escape”.

Hurry on over to her blog for the leprechaun trap building plans that will thrill your kiddos and maybe start a new tradition at your house.

A Little Leprechaun History for Kids

We all know that leprechauns have played a central role in modern St. Patrick’s Day celebrations.

Leprechauns first appeared in medieval texts, and are a type of fairy native to Ireland. His small stature helps in evading capture; by the time humans realize something is amiss, he’s out the door! At some point in time, this little symbol of Ireland became a secular mascot for St, Patrick’s Day. Also, this legendary little green man has no connection to the Catholic saint.

Now that you know how to catch a Leprechaun, may the luck of the Irish be with you finding a leprechaun or not! A wish that every day for you will be happy from the start and may you always have good luck and a song in your heart. May good fortune be yours, may your joys never end.

skip-the-cleaning

Now this is my kind of holiday. Don’t clean or luck will run away. It’s a Chinese custom not to clean the house during the first few days of the Chinese New Year. It is  believed that cleaning wipes away all the good luck, fortune and money. They throw away all the brushes, brooms and dust collectors. Who else could handle this custom? Okay, I know what some of you in our office are thinking, “we should be very very lucky in this year of the rooster”.

cleaning-set

We’ve got what you need when you are ready get back to cleaning again. Start the little ones off with this life like child size cleaning set.

teaching-kids-chores

While we are on the subject, The Clean and Organized Family Home has 11 Rules for teaching kids household chores that you might find helpful. Like doing chores together, limiting chores to 30 minutes, don’t nit pick and focus on big picture goals.

You know what they say: “many hands make light work.” Even eager little hands.

 

happy-new-year

Happy Chinese New Year 2017! The Year of the Rooster.

 

 

An essential for back to school item we all know is the pencil and have them on our lists. Why not add  this cheesey pencil idea from Moneywise Moms to your list too? Hop on over and learn how to make these funky fun pencils.

Liz has done it again making back to school pencils a little sweeter. All that you need is right here, but for a beautiful how to pictorial hop over to Hoosier Homemade.

Back to School Candy Pencil Supplies

  • Rolo Candy
  • Hershey Chocolate Kisses
  • Yellow scrapbook paper
  • Pink scrapbook paper
  • Paper cutter {optional, but it’s really handy}
  • Black and Blue Marker
  • Aluminum Foil
  • Adhesive – we used tape, Elmer’s Extreme Glue Stick, Tape Runner
  • Scissors
  • Tags – string, paper and erasers

If any of you have great back to school surprise recipes, please send them our way.

 

ice-cube-painting

It’s a good day to melt some heat away.

There are many versions of ice cube painting. We’re going to try the Kool-Aid one but definitely outside today where it is very hot, not to mention MESSY. We’ll let you know how it goes and if it turns into semi-permanent body painting with colorful little fingers.

Share & Remember freezes liquid water colors by filling the trays with water first, then added watercolors & stirred which are left to freeze overnight.

ice-cube-painting-with-sticks

Keep the painting project less messy by freezing Popsicle sticks in the ice cubes.

Our approach will be to let the little Van Goghs cool off their hands as much as possible while creating their masterpieces hopefully on large sheets of paper.

Ice painted gift wrap!

Minieco put her 3 year old to work which resulted in brilliant and  most amazing gift wrap.

Our recipe was mixing 5 flavors of kool-aid with about 1/4 cup of water for each color, then freezing the colors into a few ice cubes. The less water you use, the more vibrant your colors will be.
We know that this will be super messy and must caution all that it will stain clothes and hands.

Give this Very Cool Recipe for Fun a try.

pink-and-friend-at-tea-party4

How will you be celebrating National Tea Day today?

Did you have pretend play tea parties as a child? I have fond memories of playing tea party with my sisters, our stuffed animals and dolls. We would put on fancy hats and white gloves as we sat at our child size table and chairs with our backs properly straight. Then, taking turns, we would carefully pour our pretend cups of tea. Some just had to have a dash of warmed milk. (little Becky’s tea cup)  Best of all, was always  passing the real biscuits.

Tea parties are excellent learning opportunities offering a way to practice introductions, social talk, and general etiquette.

Other benefits of a tea party is that pretend play is strongly linked to language, narrative language and abstract thinking. Examples of pretend play are: playing dress up, playing store, playing house, pushing trucks and cars .

You can encourage children’s love of pretending by supplying story ideas and raw materials. Their rich imaginations are one of children’s greatest learning tools. The more you incorporate pretend play, the more they’ll learn.

Now wouldn’t this be an ideal day for setting up a pretend tea party?

Wicker Basket Tea Set

One of our favorites is this wicker basket with the essentials for a tea party at home or on the go.

Seed Hearts

Not too long ago we were thinking of the winter birds and seeds. Now, with Valentine’s Day fast approaching, seeds blended into heart shapes for friends and family will be a Science Saturday project for the kiddos. We will see if ours turn out as pretty as the inspirational hearts from Hill City Bride. She used them for wedding favors and has a beautiful tutorial.

Seed Bombs

Jamie from Dabbles and Babbles makes these Valentine Seed Bombs that we will attempt making one of these days. Our friends in southern states will be able to plant them weeks before the snow melts here in Minnesota. We will be forced to wait until May for our plantings. But until then, they will provide decoration in a glass vase reminding of future springtime days filled sunshine and summer flowers. Hop on over to Dabbles and Babbles and learn how to create your own Heart Shaped Seed Bombs.

Hope that you give these a try!

Jefferson Desk and Hutch

Designing Study Spaces for Scholarly Success

Summer has barely begun here in Minnesota. It is hard to believe that in some places around the country, school will be back in session in just a few weeks.

It is never too early to begin thinking about designing an effective study space for your kids. Parents play a key role in helping their children learn the organizational skills necessary for successful study.

Here are a few tips from Legacy Kids.

Routines are key. Pick a time of day to tackle homework (right after school, after dinner, right before bed) and stick with it. Plan on some breaks (for example young children don’t focus well for more than 20 minutes) as needed. End the routine with bags packed ready for the next day.

Make a work zone. Designate an area for homework and studying. The kitchen table might work, but not if traffic and distractions are high. A child’s bedroom is a great choice, as long as they have room to spread out materials and can concentrate. A table or desk to write on, place to stash supplies, and a memo board to post notes and a calendar are helpful. Good lighting, room for a laptop computer, and a comfortable chair are also considerations.

Post the goal. Setting a goal is easy. Remembering it as you work towards it is harder. Ask your student to make a sign about the goal. It could be a huge letter A or a drawing of your student doing something fun as a reward. Then post it where he will see it as he works.

Encourage organization. Give everything a place. Encouraging your student to pick supplies and get their study spot organized may help them keep it that way and put stuff back.

Be tough. No TV, email, devices (iPad or iPod) or calls during study time.

Consider Music. Don’t automatically ban music. Light background music may help your student work. Others may find music or radio commercials distracting. Earphones may help.

Handy resources for Homework Help:

http://www.math.com/homeworkhelp/EverydayMath.html

http://www.factmonster.com/

http://www.infoplease.com/homework/hwscience.htm

http://www.homeworkspot.com

White Study Desk

Totally Kids fun furniture & toys has functional desks from almost every furniture collection. Take a look then give us a call at 952-881-2425.

Easter Egg Memory Game

If you’re looking for a cute memory game, Mr. Printables has a colorful, you guessed it, “printable” game for you.

Children will need to recognize different colors, shapes and details while trying to concentrate on the 8 brightly colored Easter Eggs, like a spotty one, stripy one or checked one.

Colorful memory game

Remember how much fun memory games can be?

Playing memory games with your child teaches nonverbal skills such as attention to detail and concentration. They also stimulate children’s ability to notice, then think about the visual physical differences. Young children can learn the similarities between objects using their visual memory or attention to their environment.  Best of all, they offer great social interaction by allowing a positive no-tech time to spend with your children.

Thank you Mr. Printables!

Fossil CookiesHow about sending your budding paleontologist back to school with a batch of fossil cookies to share with the Science Class.

Just the Simple Simon act of pressing a plastic insect toy into the top of a sugar cookie transforms the cookie into something so much more interesting.

Another oh, Martha how do have so many great recipes? Recipe found at the Martha Stewart website.

This weeks Recipe for Fun is an ideal creepy crawly cook together for even the youngest little ones.

Stella Loft at Totally Kids fun furniture and toys

Every school year parents and students dutifully trudge through the malls in search of the perfect sneaker or the cool new outfit for the coming school year.  However, it’s unlikely that the new shoe or shirt will benefit them as much as a new design in the bedroom.  That’s because a bedroom makeover will create new interest and energy – what feng shui calls “chi” – in the bedroom that will benefit a child.

According to feng shui, the Chinese technique for design and arrangement, rooms that have good energy, or “chi”, create happier, well-adjusted children.  Feng shui theories suggest that for a child’s room to have good “chi,” the room must follow certain guidelines such as that they must be restful, promote good relationships others and generate good self-esteem.  Perhaps most importantly, harmonious children’s bedrooms encourage good study habits and promote greater success in school.

What does it take to promote greater success in school?  According to feng shui, the following seven tips are key to creating rooms that inspire kids to study.

1. The room must have a desk.

It sounds obvious, but many kids’ only workspace is either a bed, the bedroom floor, or the family dining table.  Every child needs a suitable study area in the bedroom that includes a desk, chair, and a lamp.  Children with study areas are more likely to study.  Better still, having a study area keeps all the school books and papers confined to the child’s room.  Feng shui also believes it’s best for children to study facing the northeast, the direction of wisdom and learning.

2.  Ground your kids.

Buy your kids a globe to promote interest in geography and to help “ground” them and encourage them to study.  Add a globe in the Northeast corner of the bedroom, if possible.

3.  Create an achievement corner.

Every child needs to have recognition for a job well done.  A perfect way to gain this is to create an achievement corner on the South wall of the bedroom.  According to feng shui, this is the recognition area and is a good place to pin up awards, papers with good grades, letters of recommendation, ribbons or trophies.

4.  Hang a crystal in the Northeast corner of the room.

Crystals are used to make computer chips faster.  Hang a crystal in the study location to create more “study” chi and to help sharpen the child’s ability to “process” or think!

5.  Put your child in the command position.

Avoid having children face a wall when studying because this represents an obstacle.  They should be able to see the door when someone enters.

6.  Display maps and other educational artwork.

Maps are another way to ground educational pursuits.  They encourage “worldly” interest and curiosity and they make suitable images for a child’s room. Avoid scary creatures, pictures depicting violence, or sad or dark subjects.

7.  Eliminate TV from the bedroom.

Sadly many of today’s children have TVs in their bedrooms.  This is a feng shui no-no because it can make children much less likely to study and rest fully.  If your child doesn’t study as much as you would like and has a TV in the bedroom, ask yourself what is more important:  television or school?

8.  Shells and fish are symbols of education.

Conch shells and koi or goldfish are excellent symbols of educational success.  Place the conch shell in the Northeast corner of the bedroom.  Or, hang a picture of koi or goldfish in the Northeast corner.  It is not recommended to keep live fish in the bedroom as water in the bedroom is associated with loss.

9.  Make a space for books and school materials.

When kids come home from school they should have a place to put their backpacks and books.  There should also be a place for them to hang coats and hats and take off shoes.  If your kids put their books on the stairs this is especially important because anyone using the stairs will be stepping over the books.  This symbollically puts education “under your feet.”  Make sure books are not put on the stairs but have a regular “home” when the kids come in the door.

10.  Activate the wisdom direction.

The Northeast sector should be activated appropriately with a globe, a lamp, and/or a quartz crystal or geode.  Other objects would include anything made of porcelain or earth, such as a vase.  A rock collection is another excellent way to energize this sector.

11.  Careful about what you place under the stairs.

If you have stairs in your home, you will want to make sure there is nothing there that can be harmful to your family.  In particular, water located under stairs poses a threat to children in the home — and to their education.  If the space under your stairs is open, try to close it up.  If you can’t, then place a heavy object such as a statue here.  If there is a closet located here, make sure it is filled with family possessions, such as holiday decorations, suitcases, or other household items.  Avoid placing books in here, however, as this can cause studies to falter.

Thank you so much Kathryn for these helpful tips for school success!

Kathryn Weber is the publisher of the Red Lotus Letter Feng Shui E-zine and certified feng shui consultant in authentic Chinese feng shui. Kathryn helps her readers improve their lives and generate more wealth with feng shui. For more information and to receive her FREE  E-book “Easy Money – 3 Steps to Building Massive Wealth with Feng Shui” visit www.redlotusletter.com and learn the fast and fun way how feng shui can make your life more prosperous and abundant!