Learning

Should you sign your child up for a research study at Dalhousie University?

Should you sign your child up for a research study at Dalhousie University?

Ever consider participating in one of those research studies for kids at the Early Social Development Lab​ but hesitated because you weren't sure what it was REALLY all about?

I've got the scoop on everything you could ever want to know about how it works, the commitment required, privacy questions, and if they REALLY hook your kid up to machines (spoiler alert, NO!!! 😂😂😂). Also another spoiler alert, my kids always have a wonderful time and walk away with a fun prize.

Valentine Literacy Scavenger Hunt

Valentine Literacy Scavenger Hunt

Holidays are always a wonderful time to take a simple learning activity and turn it into a fun, themed game. We made this literacy game a few years ago and it still gets pulled out with our Valentines decorations each year and ignites new enthusiasm every time. Plus, as is my way, it's super simple to create and play (and cheap!).

7 Ways To Celebrate Family Literacy Day in Halifax

7 Ways To Celebrate Family Literacy Day in Halifax

Family Literacy Day is Saturday, January 27 and we are getting ready to party like only bookworms can! There aren't a lot of "official" celebrations in the city but we have come up with seven very Haligonian ways to encourage family literacy.

How To Teach Kids To Use Scissors With a Cutting Tray

How To Teach Kids To Use Scissors With a Cutting Tray

Watching my four year old struggle to use scissors takes every ounce of my self-control not to take the scissors from him and do it myself. He holds them awkwardly, the scissors often don't make it all the way through the paper, and cutting along the lines? Not a chance. It's so ragged and so crooked it makes my teeth hurt.

This activity is a super simple, supervised, activity that will go miles towards increasing your child's comfort level with scissors. Another bonus is that it turns learning how to use scissors from a chore into something fun.

The Flying Squirrel Stowaways: From Nova Scotia to Boston

The Flying Squirrel Stowaways: From Nova Scotia to Boston

*BOOK GIVEAWAY*

Thanks to Nimbus Publishing who sponsored this post (and provided a book for a giveaway) so that we can help cultivate little readers who love local books! As always, all opinions are our own.

Most Haligonians know the story of how the people of Boston came to our aid after the catastrophic disaster of the Halifax Explosion; and, in turn, we send them a Christmas tree each year as a thank you. To help children learn about this story and tradition, Marijke Simons has written and illustrated a book called The Flying Squirrel Stowaways: From Nova Scotia to Boston. This book is our featured book for the Itsy Bitsy Nimbus Book Club this month.

If You Could Wear My Sneakers: Itsy Bitsy Nimbus Book Club

If You Could Wear My Sneakers: Itsy Bitsy Nimbus Book Club

*BOOK GIVEAWAY!*

If You Could Wear My Sneakers (the 20th anniversary edition) by Sheree Fitch, with artwork by Darcia Labrosse, is a collection of poetry in that classic Fitch silly rhyming style that is adored by children and adults alike. Each poem deals with a serious topic though as the book teaches children about the 1989 United Nations Conventions on the Rights of the Child.

This is the August pick for the Itsy Bitsy Nimbus Book Club and we've created a couple reading extension activities for this book to connect children even further with understanding their rights, and learning about poetry.

All Hail Loose Parts: Guest Post by Alex Smith of Playgroundology

All Hail Loose Parts: Guest Post by Alex Smith of Playgroundology

Our guest blogger today is Alex Smith, the founder of the CanadaPlays Association and the award winning blog PlayGroundology. Alex has been working with a small team of volunteers over the last 3 months to prepare Pop-Up Adventure Play’s visit to Halifax.

‘Loose parts’ skirt the edges of nirvana. Ask any kid. Now they probably won’t call them ‘loose parts’. They’re more likely to use the generic and all encompassing ‘stuff’ prefaced by cool, awesome, or great. It might even go the way of ‘this stuff is epic’.

Wood, rope, tarps, tires, milk crates, cardboard boxes, fabrics. PVC pipes, pallets and all manner of scrap materials can make up a loose parts inventory. Kids take them and create. They build up and pull down. They improvise, they move, groove and PLAY!

KidloLand App Review

KidloLand App Review

*CONTEST!* Kids and technology. Whatever your thoughts on it are, it's part of our world today. I've just started introducing my kids to apps and had a chance to review this KidloLand app recently. Here is my review, and I've got a three month subscription to their service to give away this week too!