Kids Yoga Book: Review of Rachel’s Day in the Garden

Kids Yoga Book: Review of Rachel’s Day in the Garden

May 3, 2016

Books that include actions are wonderful for engaging busy little kids in reading activities, so I loved the new yoga book, Rachel’s Day in the Garden: A Kids Yoga Spring Colors Bookwhich combines gorgeous pictures with simple yoga poses just right for young children. 

Germinated seeds sensory activity

Germinated seeds sensory activity

Apr 25, 2016

Nature gives us our best sensory activities, without planning or cost. Exploring the garden, hunting for bugs or stones always turns up something. We’ve been away the past two weeks on holiday, but just before we left we had a fascinating surprise in the playground sandpit, when we discovered hundreds of seeds had sprouted tiny roots and leaves.

Teach your child to say ‘Mama’: Language skills targets for babies and toddlers

Teach your child to say ‘Mama’: Language skills targets for babies and toddlers

Apr 22, 2016

 

I realize that saying ‘Mama’ doesn’t sound like a major language skills goal, but let’s be honest, isn’t that what most mothers can’t wait to hear from their babies? And although I’m writing about ‘Mama’, the ideas in this post are just as relevant for ‘Dada’ or ‘Nana’ or whatever name you’re using, as a key figure in your little one’s life.

Language skills targets for babies and toddlers: 7. First Words

Language skills targets for babies and toddlers: 7. First Words

Apr 15, 2016

Our babies’ first words are undoubtedly one of the most exciting milestones of the early years. We get to hear about what interests our little ones, what they want and what they think, and start to connect in a whole new way. So how do we encourage babies and toddlers to speak? Here are some ideas and resources to get started!

How to make art with little kids – even when you’re not arty!

How to make art with little kids – even when you’re not arty!

Apr 15, 2016

As long as I can remember I’ve thought of myself as not arty. As a child I had friends who could transform paper into a thing of beauty, but not me. I always preferred words and stories. But art is incredibly important to young children, so I knew I wanted to include it in my sons’ days and help them to enjoy creativity. I’ve been discovering so much with them!

Imaginative play ideas for a town puzzle floor mat

Imaginative play ideas for a town puzzle floor mat

Apr 6, 2016

Imaginative play makes my three-year-old happy, and that’s enough of a reason for us to do it. It’s also amazing for learning, especially for building sophisticated language skills. One of our favorite ways to do pretend play together is to use the Orchard Toys Giant Town and Giant Road floor puzzles, because they set up an incredibly stimulating small world to explore. In today’s post I’m sharing some ideas for using the Giant Road puzzles in pretend play with toddlers and preschoolers.

Language skills targets for babies and toddlers: 6. Animal sounds

Language skills targets for babies and toddlers: 6. Animal sounds

Apr 3, 2016

A very common group of early ‘words’ for children are animal sounds: moo, baa, neigh, woof… It might seem silly to try to teach these words to your little one but it’s honestly a wonderful way to encourage talking! Find out why, and how in this post.

Inventing songs with toddlers

Inventing songs with toddlers

Mar 24, 2016

Singing songs is a great way to boost toddler language skills because it engages little children in a fun interaction and encourages them to listen out for and enjoy the sounds of words. Inventing new songs extends this. It helps fill your toddler’s day with words, and makes songs directly relevant to their experience. The language-learning potential from that is huge! This post gives quick tips for inventing songs your little one will love.

Language skills targets for babies and toddlers: 5. Play Sounds

Language skills targets for babies and toddlers: 5. Play Sounds

Mar 20, 2016

Before a baby says her first words, she will learn to use sounds in communication and to make particular noises on purpose. A great way to encourage this process is to introduce fun noises to your little one’s play. It may seem trivial, but in fact learning to imitate playful sounds is a big step towards learning to talk. This post is all about encouraging your baby or toddler to get noisy and verbal in play with easy to imitate sounds.

Flour tray: Simple sensory play for toddlers

Flour tray: Simple sensory play for toddlers

Mar 16, 2016

All you need to do this activity is a tray and a few spoonfuls of flour: it’s that simple. For a toddler, it’s a chance to explore the sense of touch, experiment and, of course, talk. I set this activity up after naptime expecting a few minutes of curious play, but my two-year-old was still playing with it an hour later!