We are a proud partner of Read Aloud 15 to help remind parents of the importance of daily reading aloud starting at birth. For just 15 minutes a day, you can make a difference. According to Read Aloud, research shows that reading aloud the single most important thing you can do to help a child prepare for reading and learning. Birth to age 3 are critical years in the development of language skills. You help grow vocabulary and knowledge for your child. You can start reading aloud with the Read Aloud’s 21 Day Challenge. With that said, I’ll introduce you to an interactive read aloud Readatron-15 activity from Read Aloud and this can be part of your ‘read aloud’ curriculum.
What is Readatron-15
Readatron-15’s role is to show you how important reading skills are for child’s success in school. It is to help remind you that how beneficial reading is for child’s mind. It shows important it can be for subjects such as art and music as well. You’re building readiness that comes all together. Be consistent and make it fun. And reading doesn’t have to be a book, it can be anything. Remember that you are your child’s first and most important teacher.
Assembling The Paper Robot
Download the Readatron-15 Paper Robot Activity From Read Aloud Here
You can also find more Read Aloud’s activities at their site as well.
The goal in early childhood education should be to strengthen cognitive and social development. In early childhood, playful learning includes exploration and engagement. Engagement is especially import because by participating in your child’s play will help build strong family bonds. Moreover, play based learning helps develop curiosity, language, and social emotional skills in children. New York State Education Development has a tip sheet how as a parent you can explore and engage in play with your child. Click here to learn more about benefits of play based learning.
Type of Play and Highlighted Benefits Of Play Based Learning
To sum it up, play has physical, cognitive, and social benefits. Active playing helps develop fine and gross motor skills. Also, play helps cognitive thinking; problem solving, independent thinking, hand-eye coordination, and more. Children are constantly exploring, observing and processing new information in their play. Social benefits from playful activities such as hide and seek help build skills like communication, negotiation, and self awareness. You’re also forming strong family bond together.
How to Strengthen Play Experience
- Plan activities that encourage participation and maximize children’s interests and skills. (How Learnings Kits Helped Me Teach My Preschooler)
- By participating in play and following children’s lead.
- Engage in conversations that deepen children’s understanding of content knowledge .
- Rotate and provide new materials, play ideas, and task-based explorations.
- Balance out the curriculum and schedule to include play experiences. (Enroll in our Free Preschool Curriculum)
Choosing the right early childhood program is a critical, but unguided process. The NAEYC has set 10 program standards for early childhood education. The standard acts as a guide to help families choose the right child care center, preschool, or kindergarten.
The NAEYC stands for National Association for the Education of Young Children. It promotes high-quality early learning for all children, birth through age 8, by connecting practice, policy, and research.
In developing their ECE program standards, the NAEYC received input from experts and educators from around the country. Today, the standards and criteria serve as the foundation of the NAEYC Accreditation system for early childhood programs. To earn accreditation, programs must meet all 10 standards.
Below, we’ve summarized the 10 program standards set forth by NAEYC. Despite whether or not the early childhood program you’re exploring is NAEYC accredited, use this as a guide to asking the right questions.
Overview of the NAEYC Early Childhood Program Standards
- Relationships: Promotes positive relationships among all children and adults. It encourages each child’s sense of individual worth and belonging as part of a community and fosters each child’s ability to contribute as a responsible community member.
- Curriculum: Implements a curriculum that is consistent with its goals for children and promotes learning and development in each of the following areas: social, emotional, physical, language, and cognitive.
- Teaching: Uses developmentally, culturally, and linguistically appropriate and effective teaching approaches that enhance each child’s learning and development in the context of the curriculum goals.
- Assessment of Child Progress: The program is informed by ongoing systematic, formal, and informal assessment approaches to provide information on children’s learning and development.
- Health: Promotes the nutrition and health of children and protects children and staff from illness and injury. Programs must be healthy and safe to support children’s healthy development.
- Staff Competencies, Preparation, and Support: Employs and supports a teaching staff with the educational qualifications, knowledge, and professional commitment necessary to promote children’s learning and development and to support families’ diverse needs and interests.
- Families: Establishes and maintains collaborative relationships with each child’s family to foster children’s development in all settings
- Community Relationships: establishes relationships with and uses the resources of the children’s communities to support the achievement of program goals.
- Physical Environment: safe and healthful environment that provides appropriate and well-maintained indoor and outdoor physical environments.
- Leadership and Management: Program effectively implements policies, procedures, and systems that support stable staff and strong personnel, and fiscal, and program management so all children, families, and staff have high-quality experiences.
The above list is an overview of NAEYC’s program standards. For more detail about each standard and specific directive for what to look for in a program, learn more here. For a printable version of the NAEYC standards in PDF, download it here.
Source: NAEYC.org: The 10 NAEYC Program Standards.
Are you looking for the best fun and easy apple crafts for preschoolers or toddlers? Look no further! I’ve curated some of the best apple crafts out there that your child will get excited about without the stress!
Fall reminds me of pumpkin spiced lattes and apple picking! It’s the perfect season to engage your preschooler in apple crafts. If you take your little one apple picking, more than likely, you’ll come back with more apples than you know what to do with!
I love to do a combination of crafts using real apples and paper crafts centered around the apple theme. Also, if your child is in daycare or preschool, I guarantee the center will be doing some form of apple theme crafts for preschoolers. This is because school starts in September, it’s apple season, and apple begins with the letter A! The best way to support your child’s learning is to engage in similar activities when they’re home too.
I’ve scoured the web for the best apple crafts that are fun, easy, and utilize items you have around the house for preschoolers. Not only are they easy, the list of apple crafts have a mix of both process and product activities. This is to give your child a mix of different experiences when embarking on their creative journey.
Fun and Easy Apple Crafts for Preschoolers
- Conduct an apple investigation using real apples by TigerKubz
- Use popsicle sticks to learn that A is for Apple craft by Glues to My Craft Blog
- Make your own homemade apple spiced playdough by Kitchen Floor Crafts
- Develop fine motor skills by tearing paper to create an apple by Simply Today Life
- Learn about seasons and the life cycle of an apple tree by TigerKubz
- Make caramel apples using paint and sprinkles by Raising Whasians
How many books should I read to my toddler a day? I get this question a lot from parents. The rule of thumb is to read for at least 15 minutes a day. Because books vary in length, there isn’t a magic number for the number of books you need to read to your toddler.
You know the saying, quality over quantity? That applies to reading too! Going by how many minutes to read a day instead of how many books is a better gauge. The quality of the reading time matters. Quality of reading does not mean choosing the perfect book, but the engagement during reading. Are you pointing out things in the picture, making predictions, talking about the story, or relating it back to your toddler’s experiences? Engagement during reading helps toddlers build vocabulary, comprehension, and expands their world to new ideas.
I mentioned before that a quality book doesn’t mean the best book – because every person has their own preference, including our toddlers! The best books to read to your toddler are about topics they are interested in (e.g., dinosaurs, cars, trains). If you are looking for new books to add to your collection, you can never go wrong with classics that have stood the test of time. You’ll know they are interested in the book when they ask to read books over and over again. If you read their favorite book repeatedly every day for at least 15 minutes a day, you are already on a roll!
For a starter list of popular children’s classics, look for these books in your local library or at the book store:
- Brown Bear, Brown Bear by Eric Carle
- The Hungry, Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle
- Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown
- The Runaway Bunny by Margaret Wise Brown (click here for free book-based activity ideas)
- Harold and the Purple Crayon by Crockett Johnson
- Caps for Sale by Esphyr Slobodkina
- Pete’s a Pizza by William Steig (click here for free book-based activity ideas)
- Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown
- If You Give a Mouse a Cookie by Laura Numeroff
Sure, reading the same book can get repetitive for parents, but with every reading, children may be picking up on new themes and ideas. This is how we build reading comprehension!
Next time, don’t worry about how many books you should be reading to your toddler each day. Instead, focus more on the quality of your reading time and aim to read for at least 15 minutes.
The Mid-Autumn Moon Festival is to celebrate the end of a successful rice harvesting season and to hope for another successful season next year. The festival is celebrated in many countries in Asia such as China, Japan, Vietnam, and more. In Japan, it’s called Tsukimi (Moon-Viewing). In Korea, it’s Chuseok (Autumn Eve).
As part of the mid-autumn festivities, families typically eat mooncakes and light up lanterns. The lanterns come in a variety of colors, shapes, and sizes. You can decorate lanterns with anything, from traditional to fun designs. Likewise, you can do the same with mooncakes and decorate colorfully. Above all else, make Mid Autumn Festival for kids fun so everyone in the family enjoys it.
Below, you will find ideas to celebrate the mid-autumn festival that is great for both kids and the whole family!
Make Decorative Mid-Autumn Festival Paper Lantern Crafts for Kids
You’ll first need to get some paper lanterns and you can easily find those at amazon. After you get the paper lanterns, let your kids decorate freely. And for that, I gathered some designs you can look for inspiration.
Picture Books in English for Preschoolers Celebrating Mid-Autumn Festival
Round is a Mooncake
By Rosemary Thong, Illustrated by Grace Lin
A little girl’s urban neighborhood becomes a discovery ground for all things round, square, and rectangular in this lyrical picture book. Most items are Asian in origin, others universal: round rice bowls and a found pebble, square dim sum and the boxes that the pizzas come in, rectangular Chinese lace, and a very special pencil case.
Perfect for read-aloud or one-on-one sharing. Lesson Plans can be found here.
By Kae Nishimura
Bunny Lune gets a letter from his Japanese friend, Pyonko, about her Otsukimi celebrations and how rabbits are an important part of the lunar holiday. Soon, Lune becomes obsessed with going to the Moon himself. Does he achieve his dream?
Korean Celebrations: Festivals, Holidays and Traditions
By Tina Cho, Illustrated By Farida Zahman
This book allows children to experience Korean culture firsthand by involving them in games, crafts, stories, foods and other activities including preparing and enjoying delicious Songpyeon—sweet dumplings that everyone loves to eat on Chuseok.
It’s back to school once again in a pandemic. And like last August, we went shopping for school supplies, shoes (why do their feet grow so fast?!), and masks.
After spending many hours and dollars trying every kind of mask imaginable last school year, we learned many things and hope these tips will help other families have a successful school year.
Four Tips To Make Masks Comfortable, Safer and Habitable
- Quality – Buy from a company that specializes in face masks and not from a well meaning local seamstress (that said, please support your local businesses). There are so many masks available now to fit every budget. Look for breathable fabrics that offer built in filtration like ones made with nano fibers when possible. Look for nose clips and adjustable ear loops. Avoid vents and gaiters (many schools don’t accept them). And if looking at disposables, look for ones that are individually wrapped (makes it easy to send extra masks to school in backpacks), and triple or more layered. Do take a moment to check the durability of the ear loops. Some disposable masks have ear loops that snap very easily.
- Fit and Shape – Can you understand your child’s speech with a mask on? We found that cone shaped or 3D/folding masks that create a pocket away from the mouth not only made breathing easier but also reduced the muffling of our son’s speech. Is the mask often soaking wet with saliva? Most young kids are mouth breathers and we found many soft shapeless fabric masks got sucked into our son’s mouth. Pay close attention to the sizing chart for each mask because no two are the same. Test to see if the mask rides up and down when speaking. A proper fitting mask should have as little of a gap as possible around the nose, sides, hug the chin and stay on the nose even when speaking.
- Comfort – Like shoes, if it isn’t comfortable, the child won’t wear it. Proper fit and lightweight breathable material will make the mask more comfortable to keep on during the school day. Practice until the child is comfortable putting it on and off by themselves. We also found that using a lanyard with breakaway connectors helped our son not lose his mask and kept it off the ground/dirty surfaces when he was eating or drinking.
- Attitude – We all started wearing our masks as a family before our son went back to school last year. And even after we got vaccinated, we kept ours on when going to public indoor places because he was not. We discussed why we are wearing masks. We made it part of our routine for leaving the house like putting on shoes. We made wearing a mask no big deal and so he doesn’t think it is a big deal.
What our rising Kindergartener is wearing to school this year
Happy Masks, has implemented a regular restocking schedule and waitlist. Follow them on Instagram for updates. (s/ preschool and primary school age kids, m/older kids).
Pros: Built in nano fiber filter. The cone shape keeps the mask away from the mouth. It also has a built-in nose clip and adjustable ears.
Cons: Cleaning process (hand wash and air dry). Relatively high initial cost ($25 each), but each one lasts about 50 washes (only $0.50 per wear).
Individually wrapped disposables masks for kids:
- G-Box Children’s 5-Layer Disposable Particulate Respirator (25-pcs, Individually Wrapped & Sealed)
- Dr.Puri New Micro-Dust Protection Face Premium Mask (KF94) White Small
- Kids Face Mask Boys (50 Pack, Individually Wrapped) – 3-Ply Non-Medical Face Masks for Kids
From our family to yours, good luck and have a fun safe school year!
~ W Family
More At TigerKubz
- Interactive Read Aloud Is Important For Kids and Preschoolers
- What Standards to Look For In An Early Childhood Preschool Program
- How Many Books Should I Read to My Toddler a Day?
- How to Choose Preschool Homeschool Curriculum Kits for Parents
- Tips On Making Masks For Kids At School Comfortable
- How Learnings Kits Helped Me Teach My Preschooler