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Patriotic Ice Pops

Patriotic Ice Pops

Nothing quite cools during hot summer days like an ice pop. We love our Tovolo Star Ice Pop Molds and wanted to try to make red, white, and blue patriotic Popsicles. The challenge is a natural, non-toxic blue food dye and, after much experimenting, came up with this recipe: Ingredients one ripe banana 6-8 large strawberries a quarter cup of blueberries (optional) chilled lemonade 4 oz cup of banana or vanilla yogurt honey or sugar (just for the blue layer) red cabbage Directions: 1. Red … Read entire article »

Filed under: Featured, Home Arts, Summer, Taste

Glue Batik Father’s Day Banner Craft

Glue Batik Father’s Day Banner Craft

We’ve been eager to try out this kid-friendly glue batik craft technique that I saw a few years ago at  That Artist Woman. Essentially, you create a glue-resist on fabric with the blue glue gel (we used Elmer’s) and then paint over with acrylic paints or fabric paint. We decided to make Father’s Day garden banners to celebrate Daddy and Papa. Materials: fabric (we used canvas bags from Michael’s but almost any white fabric would work) glue gel (we … Read entire article »

Filed under: 5-6 (Kindergarten), 5-6 (Kindergarten), 6-8 (Early Elementary), 6-8 (Early Elementary), 9-11 (Elementary), 9-11 (Elementary), Art, Featured, Home Arts

Live Chat with Jessie Hartland, author of Bon Appetit! The Delicious Life of Julia Child.

Live Chat with Jessie Hartland, author of Bon Appetit! The Delicious Life of Julia Child.

I hope you will join the Random House Children’s Books Read and Play Community tonight (June 4, 9pm EST) for a Live Chat with Jessie Hartland, author of Bon Appetit! The Delicious Life of Julia Child. My daughter loves this book and I cannot wait to hear more about the author’s process! If you cannot make the chat, feel free to leave a question below and we’ll make sure to ask it during the discussion! . … Read entire article »

Filed under: 6-8 (Early Elementary), Home Arts

DIY Microwave Pressed Flowers: For Your Flower Pressing Emergencies

DIY Microwave Pressed Flowers: For Your Flower Pressing Emergencies

Did you know you could press flowers in the microwave when you have a pressed flower emergency? What? You do not have pressed flower emergencies? It is only me? Most of us know how to press flowers for crafts and studying and preserving memories. You place the flowers in between two sheets of newsprint and then place that in between two pieces of cardboard. Then you stick the entire cardboard, newsprint, flower sandwich under a pile … Read entire article »

Filed under: Featured, Home Arts, Spring

Picture Books about Maple Sugaring and Syrup

Picture Books about Maple Sugaring and Syrup

If you live in the northern latitudes, I hope you have had an opportunity to go maple sugaring. If you are too far south, try turning maple syrup into maple sugar candy to explore the science of this delicious treat! While you are waiting for your pancakes with fresh maple syrup, try these lovely picture books about maple sugaring and maple syrup! The Sugaring Off Party, by Jonathan London; paintings by Gilles Pelletier: A French-Canadian grandmother recounts … Read entire article »

Filed under: 3-5 (Preschool), 5-6 (Kindergartners), 6-8 (Early Elementary), Featured, Home Arts, Science, Spring, Weather

A Seusstastic Snack

A Seusstastic Snack

We’re gearing up to celebrate Dr. Seuss’s birthday with this healthy Cat in the Hat snack! Ingredients: Raisins Pretzel sticks Banana Strawberries Wheat Bread Directions: 1. Cut a slice of wheat bread in half. 2. Slice a banana into coins. Place two coins as eyes. 3. Use raisins to create pupils, a nose, and a smile. 4. Use two pretzel on each side as whiskers. 5. Use rows of slices of strawberries and bananas to create the hat. Enjoy! Ask your kids if they can make other Seuss … Read entire article »

Filed under: 1-2 (Toddlers), 3-5 (Preschool), 5-6 (Kindergarten), 6-8 (Early Elementary), 9-11 (Elementary), All Ages, Featured, Home Arts, Taste

How Sweet it Is: Maple Sugaring

How Sweet it Is: Maple Sugaring

Each year we visit a local family farm for their Maple Sugaring demonstration. What a hands-on (and tasty) way to learn about Native American and Colonial culture and history, chemistry, the weather, and ecology! We followed the maple sugaring process from start to finish. First, we learned a bit about the sugar maple (which is so important that New York, Vermont, Wisconsin, and West Virginia share it as their state tree). Farmer Bob gave a talk on how … Read entire article »

Filed under: 3-5 (Preschool), 5-6 (Kindergarten), 6-8 (Early Elementary), 9-11 (Elementary), All Ages, Bodily-kinesthetic, Ecology, Featured, History and Culture, Home Arts, Logical-Mathematical, Science, Spring, Taste, Weather, Winter

Bee My Valentine Pencil Topper and Magnet

Bee My Valentine Pencil Topper and Magnet

I love Valentine’s Day for little kids–everyone gets a little token of affection and extra hugs! In a few years when the holiday is fraught with emotional angst, I’m sure I will change my tune. Until then, we really enjoy this day when my daughter gets to indulge her love of all things glittery and pink and my little boy has an excuse to kiss everyone he loves–not that he needs one! “Bee My Valentine” was … Read entire article »

Filed under: 3-5 (Preschool), 3-5 (Preschool), 5-6 (Kindergarten), 5-6 (Kindergarten), 6-8 (Early Elementary), 6-8 (Early Elementary), Featured, History and Culture, Home Arts, Interpersonal, Literacy

How to Make Cinnamon Applesauce Ornaments

How to Make Cinnamon Applesauce Ornaments

My daughter first made cinnamon applesauce ornaments in her preschool class and I was just so fascinated by them! I couldn’t believe that cinnamon and applesauce together would dry solid and sturdy enough and that the applesauce would not attract pests. Spices are natural preservatives and pest repellents, as I know from our apple pomanders and the dough does indeed dry solid but you need to give it time. Materials: Applesauce Cinnamon Cookie Cutters Embellishments Directions 1. Mix equal parts applesauce and cinnamon. … Read entire article »

Filed under: 3-5 (Preschool), 3-5 (Preschool), 5-6 (Kindergarten), 5-6 (Kindergarten), 6-8 (Early Elementary), 6-8 (Early Elementary), 9-11 (Elementary), 9-11 (Elementary), Featured, History and Culture, Home Arts, Smell, Touch, Winter

Native American Indian Medicine Bag for Kids

Native American Indian Medicine Bag for Kids

My daughter noticed the medicine bags when we were looking at pictures online of traditional Native American dress. So, we decided to make a simple one from felt. You can buy Medicine Bag Craft Kits that come with real leather. We made this inexpensive, young-kid-friendly version from felt and other materials we had around the house. While it may not be as accurate a recreation as an older child might make, making the Native American Indian … Read entire article »

Filed under: 6-8 (Early Elementary), 6-8 (Early Elementary), 9-11 (Elementary), 9-12 (Middle Grades), Featured, History and Culture, Home Arts