Cinco de Mayo Fun at Home

Come 5th May every year and it’s time for a gala celebration for Cinco de Mayo. Why should this year be any different? Here are a couple of ways to have a good time at home and also instill some learning into your little ones regarding the significance of the festive occasion.
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Cinco de Mayo” by uroesch is licensed under CC by 2.0

Make Paper Bag Pinatas: Definitely one of the best parts of the celebration, homemade paper bag pinatas (especially those that burst open by breaking it open with a stick) are a treat to behold. All the more fun to involve your kids in stuffing them up with confetti and candy.

Whip Up Some Margaritas: Kiddie non-alcoholic ones, of course, with a dash of lime! Just holding the much coveted glass and taking a sip like adults is sure to be exciting for the children.

Adorn Walls in Red & Green: The colors of the Mexican flag should be all around you to get you in the true spirit of Cinco de Mayo.

Here’s wishing a ton of pinatas, margaritas and laughter to all you folks out there!

Eggs-citing Easter Egg Activities for Kids

Think Easter and the first thing that comes to mind is delectable and gaily colored Easter eggs (with a chocolatey center!). Hence, on the occasion of Easter, here are three eggs-citing Easter egg activities your kids will love doing.

Easter Eggs with Missing Halves

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Easter Egg Yellow” by skarg is licensed under CC by 2.0

This is a number learning activity that is suitable for younger kids. Begin by asking your child to draw 10 eggs on construction paper or cardboard. It does not matter if the eggs aren’t exactly identical in shape. Next, ask her to cut them out using a blunt pair of scissors. Now divide each egg into two halves by drawing a zig-zag line through their middles. Assign each egg with a number in the top halves from 1 to 10.

In the bottom halves, use a marker to draw small stars to correspond with the number on each egg. Finally, cut out each egg across the zig-zag line such that the numbers get separated from the bottom halves containing the stars. Now you’ll have half cracked eggs, some with numbers and the others with stars. Ask your little ones to match the corresponding cracked missing halves with each other.

Easter Egg Bunny

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Easter Egg Bunny” by hextrust is licensed under CC by 2.0

What could be a better craft for Easter than an Easter egg and an Easter bunny rolled into one? Take a hardboiled egg and allow your little one to draw a bunny’s face on to it with a black marker – two eyes, a round nose, and a toothy smile. Now draw out two ears on construction paper or cardboard with a pencil, color them pink and stick them to the back side of the face. Use a pink marker to color the bunny’s nose for a more cheerful looking guy. Finally, take some cotton and make two round balls to stick on to the opposite end of the ears, at the bottom of the egg. After all, a bunny needs to hop, skip and jump on his own little feet, doesn’t he? Prop up the grinning guy on your mantelpiece or dining table or study table and spread some Easter cheer all around!

Easter Egg Maze

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Easter Egg Maze” by mvolz is licensed under CC by 2.0

This worksheet activity is a tried and tested fun maze printable that can be downloaded and printed from various sources. It can assume different storylines – a hen trying to find her way to her chick which is stuck at the center of the maze and can’t find its way out, an Easter bunny trying to reach carrots or simply your child being stuck in a maze herself and needing to find a way out. The common factor amongst all these is that the maze is in the shape of an Easter egg and has a back story with a hint of Easter to it. This is just one of the many Easter activities for kids that are available online.

May your Easter be as colorful as the eggs you find in your basket!



3 Ways to Make Math Learning Fun for Kids

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Kids Learn Math” by j4p4n is licensed under CC by 2.0

Start young. A parent is the first teacher a child knows before she goes to school. Starting young would mean encouraging the kids to look at numbers in a fun, playful manner. For instance, counting the plates set on the dining table at mealtimes, counting the number of cookies in the baking tray, counting out the small change at the supermarket. Kids will not realize they are learning while going about these small everyday tasks.
Practice every day. A little bit of math every single day should be made a part of your child’s routine so that she doesn’t take it as a headache or an arduous task to be completed. The key here is to get kids into the habit of playing with numbers regularly – be it through simple worksheets, online games or tutorials.
Introduce math into play. It could be anything – counting out money in a game of monopoly, exploring and segregating geometric shapes of different types into separate piles, playing hopscotch or dice games – the list is endless.

Kids don’t really hate math when they say they do; it’s more often than not a case of being afraid of it because they do not understand it well enough. A healthy amalgamation of the above three factors could go a long way in getting rid of the math phobia in kids.

About Kids & Santa Claus

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Santa Claus” by Isacvale is licensed under CC by 2.0

Literally speaking, Santa Claus(es) are quite omnipresent as Christmas and New Year draw near. You find a whole lot of them everywhere, albeit in similar red outfits and white beards and twinkling eyes. As a kid, for a considerable number of years I was of the firm conviction that Santa actually exists. I remember it was fascinating to imagine the magical man descending to our warm homes all the way from North Pole, bearing gifts that we found under the Xmas tree. And then one fine day, I ended up asking my grandmother if Santa is for real; much to my mother’s chagrin, her mother decided to spill the beans as I was ‘a big girl’ by then.

The other day I chanced upon an article which talked about Santa-related research and the science (yes, science) of why kids have such firmly rooted beliefs which wane with time about Saint Nicholas. Apparently, there is some psychology behind it. To quote from the study:
‘The influential child psychologist Jean Piaget proposed that around age 8 children enter the “concrete operational stage” of thinking- a critical, observant phase of questioning impossible things. Is the North Pole cold? How do you fit inside a chimney?”

Surprisingly enough, researchers observed that it was parents who ended up being more woebegone than their kids, once their kids knew the sad truth about Santa. I can pretty much imagine myself feeling the same, which seems to be evident in the near future. No wonder my mother felt the way she did back then!

2 Spooky Halloween Crafts for Kids

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Bat” by Schmidsi is licensed under CC by 2.0

Hanging Bats: Though bats are quite spooky in real life, the handmade crafty ones that hang upside down can look quite cool too. There are many different and simple ways to make them. For instance, you could ask your little one to paint the outside of an old toilet paper roll black (the body of the bat), stick two pieces of black elastic onto one end (for the legs), add webbed cardboard wings to the sides of the black-painted roll (just glue or staple them on), stick on google eyes on the end opposite to where you’ve tied up the black elastic and simply tie it up using the two elastic pieces to resemble an upside-down bat on your tree in the backyard.

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Cute” by OpenClipart-Vectors is licensed under CC by 2.0

Mummies: The same toilet paper rolls or old discarded cans can be used to make mummies. Get hold of either one of them and use cheap toilet paper or tissue paper or even white stick-on tape to wrap around it round and round in a haphazard manner, such that the entire roll or can is covered on its curved surface. Stick on google eyes and add a lopsided evil grin with a black marker and your mummies are ready to occupy pride of place on the mantelpiece, on your front porch or even as accompaniments to each plate on the Halloween dinner table.




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brionnasimpson

Author:brionnasimpson
I am an assistant teacher and my aim is to curate unique learning tips and techniques customized towards kids.

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