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Raising Mindfulness – Diverse Reading Challenge

Summer is upon us. This means we are all looking for books to help our kids raise their level of mindfulness via books. This diverse reading challenge around mindfulness provides you not just with ONE book but each book is a part of a series of books that all empower children to be mindful, empathetic, kind, confident and build a strong value system while providing a global view.

Buy them via the links provided or find them at your local library. You can even make a request to your local librarian or add a book request on your library’s website.

Read through the books and track the books via this handy pdf to keep track of all your summer reading. Make sure to download our Holiday Activity guide for reading comprehension activities that go along with ANY book list.

You can download our reading tracker here – CLICK HERE

Dancing in Thatha’s Footsteps

by Srividhya Venkat

On Sundays, Varun has his karate lesson, and his sister Varsha heads to dance school with their grandfather. One weekend, Varun reluctantly accompanies his sister to her lesson. Bored of waiting, he peeks into the classroom, and almost immediately, he is fascinated by the rhythm and grace of bharatanatyam, a dance from India that Varsha is learning to perfect. Varun tries a few moves at home in secret because…well, boys don’t dance, do they? His grandfather is not so sure. Will Thatha be able to convince Varun to dance in his footsteps?

Find ALL books by Yali Books here.

 

I Can Handle It

Kids learn well through repetition, and simple easy to ‘get’ language. Your children will incorporate the mindful mantra I Can HandleIt almost immediately after reading this book!

Positive self-talk is incredibly important for improving and maintaining mental health and the mindful mantra books are a way to plant that positivity right into a child’s head! Help your child learn to handle difficult emotions along with Sebastien, and provide a tool for lifelong confidence.

Check out the MINDFUL MANTRA SERIES

 

Bentley the hippo has a dream to go to the moon. As his journey begins, he runs into a silly monkey, Jaxon, who thinks throwing bananas is sharing. Bentley’s goal is to inspire children to do better, be kinder, accept and respect each other regardless of size, color, shape, gender or religion; and to help those that face other difficulties and challenges. Without “preaching” Bentley teaches children valuable lessons. Bentley’s bubbly personality inspires children to be curious as to what will happen next in this 5-book series. Get ready to fall in love with Bentley.

Check out all the Hippo Books

 

 

Cami and Wyatt Have Too Much Screen Time

by Stacy C. Bauer

Cami and Wyatt love their screen time. Watching movies and playing games on their tablets is so much fun! But are they missing out on other things? And are their family and friends feeling ignored? Screen time addicts of ALL AGES will find this book relatable and funny. Parents in particular will appreciate the gentle suggestions that inspire and empower kids to power down. Join Cami and Wyatt in the third book of the Cami Kangaroo and Wyatt Too series, as they try to break this bad habit and find their way back to the real world.

Check out all the Cami and Wyatt Too Books

 

 

Do you wish your child could be more responsible with money?

Kass budgets her money carefully and expects her brother Joey to do the same. But Joey spends every dollar he earns. When he realizes he hasn’t saved enough money to pay for something he’s been dreaming about, Joey must either learn to budget or risk giving up his dream.

A Boy, A Budget, and a Dream helps teach financial literacy and money management to children ages 4-8 in a fun and easy to comprehend way!

Hanuman Chalisa was composed by Sage Tulsidas in the 16th century in Awadhi language. (that’s over 400 years ago). Hanuman is a devotee of Lord Rama and one of the well-known characters in the Hindu epic “Ramayana”. Hanuman is Hindu’s original super hero, the monkey god. Hanuman Chalisa holds a special place and importance in the Hindu religion as it highlights Hanuman’s unique qualities. There are forty verses praising Hanuman, each line has been translated by The Jai Jais for children to easily understand. Chanting the Chalisa creates positive energy and vibrations. Children who recite the Chalisa, will be filled with wisdom and strength. Sometimes children try to do things that can be challenging or tricky, and can cause them to become sad or frustrated. Praying to Hanuman can help children accomplish difficult tasks. He can bring peace and happiness to their minds, and achieve well being.

From the seriesThe Jai Jais Legend Series

I Love BOBA!

by Katrina Liu

“I love BOBA!” is a colorful rhyming picture book inspired by the author, Katrina Liu’s, love of boba. With the bubble tea craze happening worldwide, it’s hard to believe that there isn’t a children’s book out there that celebrates this spectacular drink! This 36 page picture book features whimsical and fun illustrations that include so many amazing reasons why boba is so great! As if you need a book to convince you!

Cousins Forever

Cousins Forever is a beautifully written and illustrated book that captures the special relationship that cousins share. When one of the two families moves abroad, the two cousins do not let the distance come between them. They talk often about their friends, animals, different seasons, and outdoor activities, via video chat. With new words and languages being part of their everyday life, the two girls come up with a fun, painting game, the “Word Swap”.

A lovely tribute to the unique friendship of cousins. Parents, aunts, uncles and grandparents can share this book with little ones who are just beginning the lifelong journey as cousins together. Close friends are family also, so if you don’t have an extended family, your child’s best friend may also be referred to as a cousin. Available in 18 languages.

Check out all the Other multilingual books by Elisavet

Little Cat Feels Left Out

by Dori Durbin

What is so special about Mr. Fuzzby? He can’t possibly be a better best friend than Little Cat… right? Is Little Cat being LEFT OUT?

Little Cat sets out on a mission to learn what makes Mr. Fuzzby tick. But what she discovers about true friendship will surprise children and parents alike!

Friendships can be tricky, help your child see them in a new way! If your child has ever struggled with disappointing friendships or feeling LEFT OUT, then this book is for you both! Help your child identify behaviors of good friends, ways they can be even better friends, and that no one ever has to FEEL LEFT OUT!

With relatable, child-like animal characters and comical illustrations, “Little Cat Feels Left Out” will engage and elate even the youngest of readers. Be prepared to read it again… and again!

Check out the The Little Cat Feelings Series

My Sister’s Super Skills

by Lauren Mosback

David is having a rough day…but his emotions are no match for his older sister Lily, who swoops in to save the day with some super skills! When Lily observes her brother feeling frustrated, sad, and irritable, she quickly shows him some helpful tips and tricks to help him feel better. And though David might not feel like jumping up and down for joy at that very minute, he soon learns that an improved mood is just a few actions away. Will Lily’s super skills be enough to save the day?

Fred the Super Saves the Mangroves

by Pina Bird

Fred’s new adventure takes you on a trip deep into the mangrove forests of Australia. While taking in all the beauty of this new habitat, Fred discovers that the forest is at risk and needs immediate help. How will Fred and his friends save the mangroves? Join the adventure and find out what they learn about the mangrove forests.

From the series – Fred the Super Series

A Curious Boy Named Jeff: Based on Jeff Bezos’s Life

by Kay B

Jeff is a very successful person. He runs his own company called Amazon. Amazon helps people buy and sell anything using the computer and internet. So, how did Jeff become successful? What is one value that has helped him? BEING CURIOUS!

Jeff likes to read, ask questions and observe the world around him. He discovers new things every day and every day he works to help makes peoples’ lives easier. We always teach children about remarkable people of the past. But what about those in the present? What can children learn from them?

Little Kids’ Big Lessons series focuses on successful, inspirational people of today, and highlights a key value that has helped each one of them achieve their success. The first book of the series is about Jeffrey P. Bezos, founder of Amazon.

From the series – Little Kids’ Big Lessons Series

I Love Masala Me

by Nikita Gupta

Joselyn and Amit are children that belong to two worlds, and two different but beautiful cultures. Growing up, they could choose to assimilate into American culture completely, or they could choose to embrace their multicultural heritage. They both decide to celebrate the richness of their multicultural (Indian and American) identities. This book is a celebration of culture and multicultural identity through food from chicken nuggets and chicken pakora, to cheese curds and paneer tikka, etc. Find yourself immersed in a delightful children’s book that explores the gift of being a masala or a multicultural child, all while you enjoy learning some Hindi and English too. I love masala me is a simple story that encourages children not to shun being different but to love it. In today’s diverse and divisive climate, self-love, acceptance, and inclusion are of the utmost importance, and what better way to convey this message than through food.

Sparkles of Joy

by Aditi Wardhan Singh

Empathy comes from knowledge.

Caleb, a new neighbor, joins a Diwali themed play date. Will Riya and her friends be able to make Caleb feel comfortable?

Explore Diwali, Christmas Hanukkah , similarities and differences. Find out how cultures around the world sparkle in different ways. Enjoy this fun story that takes you around the world, written by multi-award winning Author Aditi Wardhan Children.

The Sparkling Me Series books are ideal for elementary aged kids, preschoolers and teachers. Conversation starters, a Diya making activity and a resource guide come with this book.

Check out all the books in the Sparkling Me Series

Download our FREE ACTIVITY GUIDE to make the most of THE holidays.

Includes Reading comprehension exercises, boredom busters and creative thinking work sheets.

CLICK HERE TO GRAB IT NOW

References:-
www.goodreads.com
www.amazon.com
www.googlebooks.com

 

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Simple Tips to Make Traveling with Family Easier

Are‌ ‌you‌ ‌planning‌ ‌on ‌travel‌ing ‌with‌ ‌your‌ ‌family‌ ‌this‌ ‌summer?‌ ‌Do you need easy tips for the same? There‌ ‌are‌ ‌a‌ ‌number‌ ‌of‌ ‌things‌ ‌you‌ ‌will‌ need‌ ‌to‌ ‌do‌ ‌in‌ ‌order‌ ‌to‌ ‌make‌ ‌the‌ ‌trip‌ ‌a‌ ‌safe‌ ‌and‌ ‌easy‌ ‌one.‌ ‌These‌ ‌handy‌ ‌tips‌ ‌will‌ ‌keep‌ ‌you‌ ‌fully‌ ‌up‌ ‌to‌ ‌speed‌ ‌so‌ ‌that‌ ‌you‌ ‌can‌ ‌get‌ ‌there‌ ‌in‌ ‌a‌ ‌hurry.‌ ‌Keep‌ ‌them‌ ‌in‌ ‌mind‌ ‌as‌ ‌you plan‌ ‌your‌ ‌next‌ ‌fun-filled‌ ‌family‌ ‌summer‌ ‌vacation‌ ‌trip.‌ Here are easy tips to traveling with family.

Easy Tips to Make Traveling with Family Easier

 

Make‌ ‌Sure‌ ‌to‌ ‌Plan‌ ‌Everything‌ ‌in‌ ‌Advance‌ 

Are‌ ‌you‌ ‌planning‌ ‌to‌ ‌go‌ ‌to‌ ‌a‌ ‌special‌ ‌destination‌ ‌this‌ ‌summer?‌ ‌You‌ ‌may‌ ‌be‌ ‌looking‌ ‌forward‌ ‌to‌ ‌a‌ fun‌ ‌week‌ ‌or‌ ‌two‌ ‌of‌ ‌outdoor‌‌ ‌‌tent‌ ‌camping‌.‌ ‌If‌ ‌this‌ ‌is‌ ‌the‌ ‌case,‌ ‌it’s‌ ‌a‌ ‌good‌ ‌idea‌ ‌to‌ ‌get‌ ‌all‌ ‌of‌ ‌the‌ ‌details planned‌ ‌out‌ ‌well‌ ‌in‌ ‌advance.‌ ‌This‌ ‌is‌ ‌a‌ ‌move‌ ‌that‌ ‌will‌ ‌save‌ ‌you‌ ‌a‌ ‌great‌ ‌deal‌ ‌of‌ ‌time,‌ ‌effort,‌ ‌and‌ ‌money‌ ‌in‌ ‌the‌ ‌long‌ ‌run.‌ 
For‌ ‌example,‌ ‌you‌ ‌may‌ ‌be‌ ‌traveling‌ ‌during‌ ‌a‌ ‌time‌ ‌of‌ ‌urgent‌ ‌pandemic‌ ‌restrictions.‌ ‌Since‌ ‌these‌ are‌ ‌apt‌ ‌to‌ ‌recur‌ ‌at‌ ‌unknown‌ ‌intervals,‌ ‌it’s‌ ‌a‌ ‌good‌ ‌idea‌ ‌to‌ ‌keep‌ ‌up‌ ‌to‌ ‌date‌ ‌with‌ ‌current‌ ‌travel‌ ‌conditions.‌ ‌You‌ ‌should‌ ‌also‌ ‌check‌ ‌daily‌ ‌to‌ ‌see‌ ‌if‌ ‌the‌ ‌destination‌ ‌that‌ ‌you‌ ‌and‌ ‌your‌ ‌family‌ ‌wish‌ ‌to‌ ‌travel‌ ‌to‌ ‌will‌ ‌be‌ ‌open‌ ‌during‌ ‌this‌ ‌particular‌ ‌period.‌ 
You‌ ‌should‌ ‌also‌ ‌be‌ ‌sure‌ ‌to‌ ‌stock‌ ‌up‌ ‌on‌ ‌all‌ ‌of‌ ‌the‌ ‌various‌ ‌items‌ ‌that‌ ‌you‌ ‌will‌ ‌need‌ ‌in‌ ‌order‌ ‌to‌ make‌ ‌your‌ ‌trip‌ ‌a‌ ‌pleasant‌ ‌one.‌ ‌This‌ ‌means‌ ‌getting‌ ‌plenty‌ ‌of‌ ‌snacks,‌ ‌first‌ ‌aid‌ ‌supplies,‌ sunscreen,‌ ‌bug‌ ‌repellent,‌ ‌drinks,‌ ‌and‌ ‌anything‌ ‌else‌ ‌you‌ ‌may‌ ‌need.‌ ‌The‌ ‌time‌ ‌to‌ ‌gather‌ ‌up‌ ‌all‌ ‌of‌ ‌these‌ ‌items‌ ‌is‌ ‌in‌ ‌the‌ ‌weeks‌ ‌before‌ ‌you‌ ‌plan‌ ‌to‌ ‌make‌ ‌your‌ ‌trip.‌ 

Use‌ ‌Apps‌ ‌to‌ ‌Make‌ ‌Reservations‌ ‌Easier‌ 

Another‌ ‌crucial‌ ‌way‌ ‌that‌ ‌you‌ ‌can‌ ‌make‌ ‌your‌ ‌trip‌ ‌a‌ ‌much‌ ‌easier‌ ‌experience‌ ‌will‌ ‌be‌ ‌for‌ ‌you‌ ‌to‌ make‌ ‌the‌ ‌maximum‌ ‌use‌ ‌of‌ ‌a‌ ‌whole‌ ‌slew‌ ‌of‌ ‌handy‌‌ ‌‌travel‌ ‌apps‌.‌ ‌These‌ ‌apps‌ ‌have‌ ‌been‌ ‌specially‌ designed‌ ‌in‌ ‌order‌ ‌to‌ ‌make‌ ‌all‌ ‌of‌ ‌your‌ ‌arrangements,‌ ‌such‌ ‌as‌ ‌motel‌ ‌or‌ ‌flight‌ ‌reservations,‌ ‌easier‌ ‌to‌ ‌finalize‌ ‌and‌ ‌keep‌ ‌track‌ ‌of.‌ 
You‌ ‌can‌ ‌use‌ ‌apps‌ ‌in‌ ‌order‌ ‌to‌ ‌shop‌ ‌around‌ ‌for‌ ‌the‌ ‌best‌ ‌prices‌ ‌on‌ ‌motels,‌ ‌airline‌ ‌fares,‌ ‌gas,‌ ‌food,‌ ‌and‌ ‌a‌ ‌thousand‌ ‌other‌ ‌conveniences.‌ ‌You‌ ‌can‌ ‌also‌ ‌use apps‌ ‌to‌ ‌book‌ ‌your‌ ‌stay‌ ‌at‌ ‌your‌ ‌destination‌ ‌of‌ ‌choice.‌ ‌Using‌ ‌these‌ ‌handy‌ ‌apps‌ ‌helps‌ ‌you‌ ‌plan‌ ‌out‌ ‌the‌ ‌best‌ ‌time‌ ‌to‌ ‌make‌ ‌a ‌trip‌ ‌with ‌your‌ ‌family.‌ ‌They‌ ‌are‌ ‌great‌ ‌at‌ ‌helping‌ ‌you‌ ‌save‌ ‌money too.‌ 
Above‌ ‌all,‌ ‌these‌ ‌apps‌ ‌are‌ ‌here‌ ‌to‌ ‌help‌ ‌you‌ ‌plan‌ ‌your‌ ‌trip‌ ‌down‌ ‌to‌ ‌the‌ ‌last‌ ‌detail.‌ ‌You‌ ‌may‌ ‌wish‌ ‌to‌ use‌ ‌a‌ ‌particular‌ ‌site’s‌ ‌camping‌ ‌facilities.‌ ‌However,‌ ‌you‌ ‌may‌ ‌also‌ ‌wish‌ ‌to‌ ‌customize‌ ‌your‌ ‌particular‌ ‌vacation‌ ‌package‌ ‌so‌ ‌that‌ ‌you‌ ‌aren’t‌ ‌charged‌ ‌for‌ ‌hunting‌ ‌or‌ ‌fishing‌ ‌facilities‌ ‌that‌ ‌you‌ don’t‌ ‌care‌ ‌to‌ ‌use.‌ ‌Apps‌ ‌let‌ ‌you‌ ‌customize‌ ‌your‌ ‌experience.‌ 

Choose‌ ‌the‌ ‌Best‌ ‌Route‌ ‌to‌ ‌Travel‌ 

One‌ ‌of‌ ‌the‌ ‌most‌ ‌important‌ ‌things‌ ‌that‌ ‌you‌ ‌will‌ ‌need‌ ‌to‌ ‌keep‌ ‌in‌ ‌mind‌ ‌during‌ ‌the‌ ‌course‌ ‌of‌ ‌your‌‌trip‌ ‌is‌ ‌the‌ ‌route‌ ‌that‌ ‌you‌ ‌will‌ ‌take.‌ ‌This‌ ‌is‌ ‌extra‌ ‌important‌ ‌because‌ ‌you‌ ‌may‌ ‌be‌ ‌traveling‌ ‌during‌ ‌a‌‌time‌ ‌of‌ ‌pandemic‌ ‌crisis.‌ ‌You‌ ‌want‌ ‌to‌ ‌be‌ ‌sure‌ ‌that‌ ‌the‌ ‌path‌ ‌that‌ ‌you‌ ‌take‌ ‌to‌ ‌your‌ ‌vacation‌ ‌spot‌ ‌is‌‌primed‌ ‌to‌ ‌keep‌ ‌you‌ ‌free‌ ‌of‌ ‌any‌ ‌infection‌ ‌hot‌ ‌spots.‌
This‌ ‌is‌ ‌all‌ ‌the‌ ‌more‌ ‌important‌ ‌if‌ ‌you‌ ‌are‌ ‌going‌ ‌to‌ ‌be‌ ‌making‌ ‌the‌ ‌journey‌ ‌by‌ ‌car.‌ ‌You‌ ‌want‌ ‌to‌ ‌be‌‌sure‌ ‌that‌ ‌the‌ ‌route‌ ‌you‌ ‌take‌ ‌keeps‌ ‌you‌ ‌well‌ ‌clear‌ ‌of‌ ‌dangerous‌ ‌areas.‌ ‌You‌ ‌don’t‌ ‌want‌ ‌to‌ ‌have‌ ‌to‌‌pull‌ ‌over‌ ‌to‌ ‌use‌ ‌the‌ ‌restroom‌ ‌in‌ ‌an‌ ‌area‌ ‌where‌ ‌a‌ ‌curfew‌ ‌has‌ ‌been,‌ ‌or‌ ‌is‌ ‌about‌ ‌to‌ ‌be,‌ ‌imposed.‌‌This‌ ‌will‌ ‌put‌ ‌unnecessary‌ ‌stress‌ ‌on‌ ‌your‌ ‌family.‌
If‌ ‌you‌ ‌are‌ ‌flying,‌ ‌be‌ ‌aware‌ ‌of‌ ‌any‌ ‌restrictions‌ ‌that‌ ‌may‌ ‌be‌ ‌in‌ ‌place‌ ‌regarding‌ ‌the‌ ‌area‌ ‌you‌ ‌will‌ ‌be‌‌arriving‌ ‌in.‌ ‌Make‌ ‌sure‌ ‌to‌ ‌know‌ ‌all‌ ‌of‌ ‌these‌ ‌rules‌ ‌in‌ ‌advance‌ ‌so‌ ‌that‌ ‌your‌ ‌safety‌ ‌is‌ ‌not‌‌compromised.‌

Keep‌ ‌Safety‌ ‌First‌ ‌in‌ ‌Your‌ ‌Mind‌‌

Traveling‌ ‌with‌ ‌your‌ ‌family‌ ‌during‌ ‌the‌ ‌summer‌ ‌can‌ ‌be‌ ‌a‌ ‌great‌ ‌experience.‌ ‌But‌ ‌you‌ ‌will‌ ‌need‌ ‌to‌‌keep‌ ‌safety‌ ‌first‌ ‌on‌ ‌your‌ ‌mind‌ ‌at‌ ‌all‌ ‌times.‌ ‌Make‌ ‌sure‌ ‌to‌ ‌carry‌ ‌your‌ ‌masks, sanitizer, first‌ ‌aid‌ ‌kit‌ ‌and‌ ‌phone‌ ‌with‌‌you‌ ‌in‌ ‌case‌ ‌of‌ ‌trouble.‌ ‌Take‌ ‌all‌ ‌of‌ ‌the‌ ‌routine‌ ‌and‌ ‌special‌ ‌precautions‌ ‌that‌ ‌the‌ ‌situation‌ demands. This will keep you safe on your summer trip.
easy tips traveling family
Taste of the World

Explore These Popular Snacks Around the World

The world loves to snack, so what better way is there to celebrate diversity than food? From European chocolate goodies to spicy nuts or savory meat snacks, here are 10 popular snacks around the world, from 10 different countries.

 

Here are 10 Different Snacks from Around the World

South Africa

South African’s love to munch on J&M Biltong, a type of beef jerky but different. It’s made from a variety of meats including beef, ostrich, and wildebeest. The centuries-old method of massaging the meat cuts with vinegar and spices, then drying it naturally makes for a tasty snack.

The Netherlands

The Dutch are fond of Stroopwafels, a cookie version of the breakfast waffle. They were first made and sold only by bakers in the South Hollan city of Gouda during the 1800s. You’ll find them everywhere in the Netherlands today. They’re made by pressing two thin layers of dough in a waffle iron and then filled with a caramel syrup sandwich style.

Switzerland

The tiny country of Switzerland is famous worldwide for more than its chocolate, but one snack you’ll only find inside Swiss borders is the Migros Appenzeller Biberli, a soft-baked gingerbread cookie filled with marzipan (alone filling). Once only baked for holidays, they can be bought at Migros, the nation’s largest supermarket chain all year long. Best of all, since the chain is a co-op, they’re baked by locals.

Australia

Arnott’s Tim Tams are recognized all across the planet, but they were first made by the Huntington bakery in Sydney, Australia, and the Aussies consume 45 million of them every year. Tim Tams are made of two chocolate malt biscuits with a cream filling and covered in more chocolate. Get them in dark chocolate, white chocolate, mint, and caramel.

Scotland

The Scots relish their teatime, and all across Scotland, you’ll find Tunnock’s Teacakes – tiny cookies topped with a dollop of meringue and dipped in chocolate. The teacakes are the invention of the company’s CFO, Boyd Tunnuck who first made them in 1960. However, the Tunnock Bakery has been a Scottish legend since 1890.

India

You may have noticed that Cashew Nuts are often used in Indian cuisine either as a garnish or made into a paste to use in curries. But for snacking, the nuts are coated with a mix of Indian chili and other spices. You can get them from roadside stands or in markets packaged as Hot & Spicy Cashews by the Laxmi company.

Iceland

Skyr, a low-fat dairy product is proof that Icelanders like to snack healthy. Similar to Greek yogurt, it has probiotic milk cultures native to Iceland. It comes in cups and in yogurt-familiar flavors like strawberry, blueberry, and vanilla.

Japan

In Japan, Onigiri Rice Balls are stuffed with different fillings and wrapped in seaweed. These treats are sold at 7-Elevens across Japan and are as common as the U.S. Slurpee. The fillings include salmon, chicken, turnip wasabi, and grilled beef kalbi. Store managers manage the inventory so that the snacks all always fresh. Go on for more snacks around the world.


Korea

A snack called Honey Butter Chips became wildly popular on the Korean Peninsula in 2014, so much so they became hard to find. Competitors jumped on the bandwagon for the sweet and salty snack market and came up with honey mustard flavored Nongshim Sumi Chips. The tangy and sweet wavy potato chips quickly outsold Honey Butter Chips. They’re sold in Korean convenience stores.

Mexico

Those who are fans of Flaming Hot Cheetos will love Takis, their Mexican cousin. Takis are even hotter and crunchier and come in varieties such as Lime and Salsa Brava and Hot Chili Pepper. They’re sold in convenience stores and supermarkets all around Mexico and are super cheap at only five pesos which is equal to about 28 cents.

Jamaica

When traveling in the Caribbean you will be sure to make a stop in Jamaica and this wonderful island country has a great deal to offer as far as cuisine. The most popular Jamaican snacks are Chanchitas Banana Chips and jerk seasoning. This take on a traditional snack can be great for the waist line as the bananas and plantains they come from are all natural.

Of course, the best way to enjoy these tastes of the world is by traveling to the country they’re native to. But thanks to the Internet and worldwide shipping, some of these popular snacks can be enjoyed right at home.

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Milo the Albino Dino – Real Friendship Begins with Acceptance

I am so glad I was lucky enough to grab an ARC copy from the author. What a treat! Milo the Albino Dino is a MUST read for EVERY SINGLE CHILD who may think they are different, which is, let’s face it, us all. It is so important for kids to learn early how to be kind and empathetic. To stand with those who may need us, just because they may be alone. Also, that every single kid has their own unique qualities. This is such a heart warming tale, my kids had me read and re-read it to them multiple times. Thank you to the author for sharing this with us.

With colorful illustrations and vivid story telling, this book is a beautiful addition to any library.

At RaisingWorldChildren.com, we believe in building diversity and inclusion early and we are proud to support the message of this book to reach as far and wide as we can.

No child should ever feel that they are different just because of how they look. It is so essential that every kid knows that they have unique qualities that make them stand out from the crowd by their character and not how they look. Our favorite part of the book HAS to be when Milo uses his best quality to help his friends in the simplest way possible.

Every person can be helpful to others, no matter the age, or stage. A truly remarkable story for every kid!

It would be ideal for any elementary aged kid 3-10.

Book Description

Milo is having a tough time at school. The other kids won’t play with him because he’s an Albino. The longer this goes on, the sadder and lonelier he feels.

When he tells his mom what’s going on at school, she suggests he find a new friend like him. Soon, Milo is on an adventure of a lifetime searching for another Albino dinosaur. After learning about his journey, a few friends join him and discover what genuine friendship, kindness, and acceptance means.

Milo the Albino Dino teaches young children about awareness and acceptance. This book teaches children how a first impression doesn’t represent who a person is on the inside and how to form friendships without bias.
*The book includes a bonus interactive section at the end.

**It’s perfect for children between the ages of 3 and 8 years and recommended by teachers for home-schooling.

Grab the book now – Amazon       /        Author’s Website

About the Author

Tech Marketer by day and writer and musician by night, Dolev has written many short stories. After his first child was born, he started focusing on children’s books, as he gets regular inspiration from his kids. Their imagination takes him back to when he was a kid, connecting between unrelated things and blending them into a story. As a parent, he tries to use that same method and reply it back to kids, each time with a different message that will help them overcome the obstacles of life they have to cope with.
Dolev resides in North Carolina and has a wife and two kids. Read a review for his first book, Far Beyond the Sun, on our book section :
His next three books are in production now:
Painting on a Weasel
Even Monsters Need to Go Potty
My Neighbor Has it All! – About materialism and joy of life
milo the albino dino
Image : via pexels

Get Your Kids Involved With Volunteering

Getting kids involved with volunteering can be easy. You just need to show them how they can make a difference.
Below are four tips to get your kids into it.

Help Your Kids See Other People’s Needs

Get your kids to start volunteering by showing them how many needs others have. Tell them about the homeless and those who don’t have food on their tables. Share stories about children their ages who don’t have the same kinds of advantages as they do, or tell them about the elderly who are lonely in nursing homes. The more you help your kids understand the needs of others, the more willing they will be to volunteer.

Volunteer Together as a Family

The best way to get your kids involved in volunteering is to do it together as a family. Go to the nursing home to visit those who are sad and lonely or pack up bags of food for those in need. Do yard work at someone’s house or find another project that you can tackle as a family. It will feel nice to do something good together.

Find Ways for Your Kids to Use Their Talents

When you want to get your kids interested in volunteering, you need to find a way for them to feel useful doing it. If your kids enjoy writing or drawing, then get them to volunteer by sending cards or letters to those who are lonely. Check out various charities to see what kind of help they need. Figure out what your kids can do best and get them involved with the right charity so that they will feel good about their contribution.


Make Volunteering a Regular Thing and Make It Fun

Make volunteering as a family a regular thing. You can set a good example to your kids by being willing to give some of your time. Find the right charity to give to, such as Give 2 Kids, and work with it as often as possible. Get your whole family involved and have some fun volunteering. Make it a tradition to go out for ice cream afterward or do something else fun together, so that volunteer days will be a good time with your family.

Get your kids involved in volunteering, and they will feel good about themselves. Your whole family can make a difference for those in need. Find the right charity and start giving back.

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Understanding Colourism Better to Deface it’s Hold on our Future

Colourism, it’s complicated. There are blurred lines, or perhaps blurred shades would be more appropriate.  So, allow me to start with its dictionary definition.

colourism

(US colorism)

Pronunciation /ˈkʌlərɪz(ə)m/

NOUN

abstract noun

“Prejudice or discrimination against individuals with a dark skin tone, typically among people of the same ethnic or racial group”

Added to the Oxford Dictionary in June 2015

Those with darker skin experience prejudice or discrimination, while the fair skinned individuals enjoy a form of ‘white supremacy’. Colonialism and white supremacy are long gone but they left behind a dark obsession – the obsession for fairer skin, which plagues the minds of millions daily. In the non-white world, ‘fair skin equals beautiful’ is the widespread belief. The two terms in the Indian community are, in fact, interchangeably used.

One question that is often asked: what gave birth to colourism? Can we really just put the entire blame on colonialism? I don’t believe so. I believe colourism planted its seed from the time when the Aryan race (fair skinned & light eyed ) invaded India a few thousand years ago, pushing the Dravidians down south. Fair skin then became associated with power and wealth. Add to this the Indian caste and class system, and then colonialism and you get a notion so deeply embedded in the mindset generation after generation that only a mass revolution can reverse it.

It’s now become an omnipresent notion and this is how it still prevails:

  • Within the Indian community, without your knowledge, your colour is discussed by family members even before you are born. Expectant mothers are bombarded with tips on the foods to eat to have a ‘fair’ baby, a classic tip being a daily dose of milk with a pinch of saffron. Imagine, even the food being fed to you in your mother’s womb screams colourism. And when you are out, while your curious little mind is observing everything around you, feasting on colours, your family members are busy expressing their relief (or concern) on your colour. Such is the grip colourism has on everyone. Colour is so casually and overtly discussed in the Indian community, it may as well be on your birth certificate.
  • Then, as you start to grow up, you encounter the following comments on a daily basis. You find yourself either growing immune to them or succumbing, tirelessly finding ways to ‘fix’ your colour.

‘Don’t go out in the sun, you’ll turn kaali (black).’

‘You shouldn’t wear black if you have dark skin.’

‘You’re pretty for a ‘dark’ girl.’

‘You should apply my homemade body scrub to help ‘improve’ your colour.’

‘Have you tried the fairness cream? It’s really good!’

  • Finally, it is the fairness creams that give colourism wings. Feasting on people’s complexes is a multibillion dollar industry focused on selling ‘fairness’ in a tube. And thanks to Bollywood (the Indian film industry), celebrities endorsing fairness creams make selling them a piece of cake. There’s also something to be said about Bollywood not having a single A-list actress who is anything less than gori (fair).

Following George Floyd’s death in 2020 and global protests against racism and colourism, big brands such as Unilever acknowledged their social responsibility and changed the name of their iconic ‘Fair & Lovely’ cream to ‘Glow & Lovely’. Prior to that, for nearly 4 decades, advertisements of various fairness creams went as far as to say ‘use the cream to attract the man of your dreams’. May I add, Glow & Lovely is still endorsed by a very fair Bollywood actress, as though dark skin is incapable of glowing. So, the name change is really just a terrible attempt at fulfilling their social responsibility.

Dreaming of fairer skin is out in the open. No more a secret! No more shameful. In fact, dark skin is seen as undesirable. The way society sees it, if there are so many remedies to attain fairer skin, why wouldn’t you take advantage of them? Result: the cream ends up as an essential item in the shopping basket of millions.

Make no mistake, though. It is predominantly females who are expected to strive for fairness. Tall, dark and handsome. These traits make men highly desirable. The equivalent for women is ‘fair and lovely’. Ironically, it’s the tall, ‘dark’ and handsome men who settle for nothing less than ‘fair’ female partners.

This dichotomy has given birth to sexism in colourism, to engrained complexes en masse in women. Yes, fairness creams exist for men too. However, for the vast majority of them, ‘improving’ their colour is mostly a cosmetic desire. For women, it becomes implicitly necessary. Because if they don’t, they will ‘struggle to find suitable partners’ is what millions are told every year.

Having lived in Japan for nearly a decade, I discovered that the concept of skin whitening through creams and lotions is prevalent there too. Mostly for females, of course. ‘White skin covers seven flaws’ is a popular proverb every Japanese woman is familiar with. This proverb is passed down from one generation to the next in a hushed manner. Colour is not discussed as brusquely, as it is in India, however skin whitening products from a company called Bihaku were available extensively (until recently). In fact, it didn’t just stop at face creams. Whitening body lotions and soap bars were sold with the face cream.

In 2016, I came across a similar Snail Extract Whitening Cream in Thailand, readily available in every corner shop. Again, for women.

What’s important now is not when and where colourism started, but how and why did the notion become sexist, for pretty much the entire non-white world? Women go through immense pressure to strive for fair skin. Sexism in colourism is a double whammy for women.

Did I mention colourism is complicated? Turns out, it is…only for women in most communities where colourism is prevalent.  Yet another ‘ism’ for women to fight as though other ‘isms’ weren’t enough.

Is that fair? Pun very much intended!

A computer science engineer by way of background, my passion is writing. This passion emerged a few years ago, when I noticed the lack of representation in children’s books, driving me to launch the Dev and Ollie series of picture books. The books have been very well received in schools and libraries all over the world. I was awarded the Asian Women of achievement award for Arts & Culture in 2016, and invited by Her Majesty to Buckingham Palace for the UK-India Year of Culture in 2017. Last year, triggered by the BLM movement, I started writing my memoir based on my journey through colourism from the age of six. I have just completed the 1st draft of The Black Rose, and am immersed in the laborious task of editing. To instigate change, I am prepared to take the risk of exposing myself to the world. You can connect with me – Insta: @theblackrose.book |FB: @theblackrosebook

 

 


 

Are You Ready to Adopt 5 Questions You Need to Ask Yourself First

Questions to Ponder Before You Adopt a Child

Starting a family or expanding one is a big decision. If you’re choosing to adopt a child, though, you may find that the decision requires even more thought than you had imagined. If you’re wondering if you’re ready to adopt, you’ll want to ask yourself the five questions below.

What Is Your Timetable?

The first thing you need to understand is that adoption is typically a lengthy process. It’s entirely possible that your adoption could be finalized in just a few months, but it’s just as likely that you may spend years working on this process. You need to know how soon you are willing to adopt and how long you’re willing to wait before you get started.

What Type of Adoption Do You Want?

You also need to ask yourself what kind of adoption you want. Are you looking at a domestic private adoption? If so, you’ll need to look at the financial impacts and wait times. Does an international adoption make more sense? If so, look into the requirements from various countries. You may even want to think about adopting from foster care, which tends to require a serious training commitment as well as the ability to comply with specific state standards.

What Are You Looking for in Child Adoption?

Think about what you’re looking for in child adoption. Are you looking to adopt your first child? Are you looking to bring another child into your family? What are your feelings about adopting a child with disabilities? What about a sibling group? These are all questions you’ll eventually need to answer, so it’s good to start formulating your response now. The more open you are to different types of children, the faster your adoption process is likely to go.

What Can You Afford?

Adoption can be expensive, especially if you choose a private adoption. How much money are you willing to put into this process? It’s not just a matter of agency fees that you’ll need to think about. The cost of legal fees, preparing your home for a child, and even potentially supporting a birth mother can all play a role in your adoption. As such, you need to think about what you can realistically afford to do.

What Changes Are You Willing to Make?

Finally, take a look at your life today. What are you willing to change? Are you willing to give up your free time? Are you willing to give up a room in your home? Can you change your work schedule? What are you willing to do to put the child first and what are the things you can’t change? These are tough questions, but they must be answered. You can’t wait until you’ve invited a child into your home to figure out the specifics.

Are You Willing to Educate Yourself and Your Child?

When you adopt a child from another culture into your home, you need to remember that you will need to unlearn and relearn many concepts around life. Cultural background and heritage has a HUGE impact on the growth of a child. Will you take the time to learn and make exceptions to the child’s needs? Will you take the time to diversify your outlook and help your child understand themselves better? Will you expose them to the culture they came from and the one they are in, equally?

Adopting is rewarding, but it is never simple. Be prepared to answer some tough questions and to think a great deal about what adoption means to you. Only after you can come up with honest answers will you know whether or not you are ready to adopt.

4 Simple Ways to Keep Your Family Healthy

Keep Your Family Healthy Post Sickness

Keeping your family healthy and free from germs is a crucial thing to consider, especially when cold and flu season hits. When flu bites one member of the family, all the other family members also get affected. Even after the flu has vacated from the room, there are always other germs they leave behind that you should worry of. Some of the bacteria that lurk in uncooked meats can easily cause severe illness, especially to vulnerable babies. Therefore, you should ensure to follow these tips to keep your family healthy post a sickness and head off the virus and bacteria for long:

Get Vaccinated

Every time you pay a visit to your paediatrician, they will always remind you of your child’s vaccine. To keep your family healthy, you and your partner also need to be vaccinated. This is because there are some diseases, when contracted by one member of the family, it ends up affecting the whole family. Therefore, apart from giving your children a vaccine, you and your partner need it too. For example, you may be getting the flu every year, but you have not yet reached a Tdap vaccine. This vaccine usually protects against diseases such as diphtheria and tetanus. This vaccine is essential because sometimes whooping cough is not a severe illness for adults, but it can be dangerous for babies who get seriously sick.

Wash Your Hands

Regular hand washing is usually one of the best ways to stop germs from spreading. Therefore, you should ensure that you get your child up to the sink, especially at critical times like when there is an outbreak of a particular disease. Also, before eating or going to the playroom, which is a faster way of spreading germs through kids because they share their food and toys. After coming from the playroom, after sneezing or using a potty, you should ensure they wash their hands properly. Even a baby can get used to hand-washing basics by watching you regularly washing your hands and wiping them off. This will enable the child to follow these simple steps when they grow up and instruct his/her younger siblings to follow the same direction. As an adult, you should not forget to wash your hands too because it is as important as cleaning the baby’s hand.

Teach Your Kids Not to Share

As a parent, you always work hard to teach your kid the importance of sharing and taking turns on the playgrounds. However, there are a few exceptions to consider when it comes to germ prevention. Therefore, you should explain to the kids that there are certain things they should keep to themselves. It would help if you told your child that something like toothbrushes and combs is not to be shared but are only for personal use. These will allow them to stop spreading germs.

Keep the Kitchen Clean

Diseases such as foodborne diseases are usually an unpleasant disease, though generally not dangerous. It can be hazardous for babies whose immune systems are not fully developed to fight back the disease. This is why you should always pay attention to food safety when you are in the kitchen. Ensure you wash your hands thoroughly before preparing any food in the kitchen, especially when handling foods like fish, eggs, and raw meat. Also, keep multiple cutting boards in the kitchen. An important part of kitchen cleanliness is making sure you use clean water in your home. You can buy a reverse osmosis water filter to help give you peace of mind that your family is using clean water every time.

Get Outdoors

Needless to say sunshine and exercise are cornerstones of healthy living. Make sure you get lots of Vitamin D and supplement your life with good food and exercise.

Health is the first thing one should always consider in a family; therefore, follow the above steps to keep your family healthy.

 

 

Sierra Powell graduated from the University of Oklahoma with a major in Mass Communications and a minor in Writing. When she’s not writing, she loves to cook, sew, and go hiking with her dogs.

 

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Toys for Toddlers : Healthy Brain Development

During those first few years of life, toddlers learn important skills such as language, cognition, motor skills, social skills, and imagination. With the right toys, parents can help their youngsters have tons of fun, while they learn those valuable skills. Here are a few toys to help your toddler have a healthy brain development.

Sesame Street Learning Case Bundle

Packed in simple carrying cases, this bundle is full of learning fun. While one case is filled with the letters of the alphabet, the other includes numbers 1-10 along with 10 cookies to encourage counting. Toddlers will learn numbers, letters, and spelling with these cases.

Big Building Blocks

Children’s big building blocks are a great way for toddlers to learn several skills while having tons of fun. These big, soft blocks give children a safe toy that will allow them to use their imagination to create anything they can think up. Big building blocks teach imagination, problem-solving, motor skills, and self-expression.

VTech Touch and Learn Activity Desk

This activity desk is full of learning opportunities for kids between the ages of 3-6 years old. With over 160 vocabulary words, more than 20 songs, and over 30 activities, children are sure to learn a lot from this educational toy. This desk teaches animals, numbers, people, letters, and so much more. There are four different learning modes including an easel and drawing board.

Learning Resources Farmer’s Market Color Sorting Set

With 25 different food items ranging in five different colors, this is the perfect toy to teach toddlers about colors. Youngsters will enjoy learning to sort the correct colors into different baskets while learning the name for each food item.

LeapFrog Number Lovin’ Oven

The LeapFrog Number Lovin’ Oven includes an interactive oven, skillet, spatula, plates, a baking tray, and an assortment of play food. This oven teaches children sharing, numbers, songs, and counting. Children from ages 2-5 years old can enjoy imaginative cooking play with a clicking timer and real sizzling sounds on the stove.

Toddlers are endlessly curious and constantly ready to learn something new, which makes educational toys a great way to aid in healthy brain development. According to Playground Professionals, there are six main benefits to educational toys including better concentration, higher IQ’s, better creativity, social skills, heightened senses, and the development of problem-solving skills. Every moment is a learning opportunity for a toddler. Go on and incorporate these toys to your child’s play time and help toddlers have a healthy brain development.

Meaningful Books for Holi(1)

Children’s Books to Make Holi Meaningful

Holi, the ‘Festival of Colors’ is coming soon, marking the arrival of Spring! A world of colors and life lessons can be found in this two-day celebration. Making this celebration of Holi more meaningful with children’s books, is a great way to help kids build on self growth.

Holi in Northern India is celebrated to mark the advent of spring, when the flowers beginning to bloom. The many colors in the air reflect the bloom around you too.

The meaning of Holi has it’s origins in two stories. And both carry a lot of meaning for most Hindu families, specially to strengthen the bond between couples. One is of the love of Radhna Krishna, whose love is eternal and renowned for being full of naughtiness. The other is the story of Prahlad, whose demon father time and again forced him to renounce his love for Lord Vishnu and pray to him as God.

Here are some books that can make this celebration of Holi meaningful with books :

Let’s Celebrate Holi by Ajanta Chakraborty

Go on an adventure with Maya, Neel and their cute little partner, Chintu the squirrel, as they learn all about this famous Indian festival of colors including the story behind Holi, the colorful Holi markets, the incredible fun of playing Holi, the delicious Holi food and drinks and even about some unique ways of celebrating throughout the country.

Let's Celebrate Holi Ajanta Chakraborty

Holi Activity Book by Ajanta and Vivek

How do you explore the concepts of Holi with your kids in a fun & engaging way? In our latest book, we provide you easy ways for you to do just this!

Other than the usual RECIPES, GAMES, PUZZLES, etc., this book also explores these 6 sub-concepts of Holi:

Holi Activity Book Ajanta Chakraborty

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Celebrate Holi with Me by Shoumi Sen

This book is part of the series From The Toddler Diaries, a series of illustrated books which celebrates the spectrum of Indian festivals as experienced by a toddler. Presented in poetry and color, ‘From The Toddler Diaries’ is designed to drape parents and children in vivid hues of India’s cultural fabric. The inspiration behind this collection comes from an appreciation of a child’s clarity in perception, which is magical in its simplicity.

Holi Book by Sunita Shah from Jai Jais

The Jai Jais bring the ancient tale to life with magical and modern illustrations which engage children around ages 5-8 years and beyond. This is a great story for all children to learn about the Hindu festival, and a great teaching resource for schools.

Sunita Shah Jai Jais

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10 Gulab Jamuns by Sandhya Acharya

Idu and Adu are eager to try the soft, sugar soaked Gulab Jamuns that Mama has made for guests, but they have strict instructions wait. But of course, it is really hard to stay away from such deliciousness and soon the Gulab Jamuns are all gone. What will they serve the guests? This light-hearted, fun story will have kids laughing, reading, counting and yes, asking for Gulab Jamuns to cook or devour.

10 Gulab Jamuns Sandhya Acharya

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Festival of Colors

Siblings Mintoo and Chintoo are busy gathering flowers to make into colorful powders to toss during the festival. And when at last the big day comes, they gather with their friends, family, and neighbors for a vibrant celebration of fresh starts, friendship, forgiveness, and, of course, fun!

Festival of Colors Kabir Sehgal Surishtha

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How Our Skin Sparkles by Aditi Wardhan Singh

The beautiful story of Krishna asking his mother why he looks different is a wonderful metaphor of understanding the how important the many colors of the world in rainbows, flowers and people are essential to accept for children. A must read to teach kids about kindness and confidence.

How Our Skin Sparkles Aditi

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Powerful Life Lessons Holi Celebrations Teach Every Child

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Keeping Kids Connected to Nature

Today’s world is a very different place from the one in which many people of a certain age grew up in. In the past, it was very common for children to spend most of their free time outdoors, playing games in the backyard, visiting the local park with their families, constructing tree forts with their friends, and so on.

These days, however, studies show that kids are spending more time than ever before sitting indoors, usually in front of a screen. Some reports go as far as suggesting that the average American child spends several hours per day watching screens, and just a few minutes, on average, playing games outside and connecting with nature.

While screen-based activities can have their advantages, video games and TV shows cannot be considered the epitome of entertainment for our children. Kids need to get outside and enjoy a diverse range of activities, and many studies show that connecting with nature is key for a child’s development, so here are some ways you can help to make that happen.

Outdoor Attractions

One of the best ways to get the kids connected to nature and amazed by the world around them is to visit open-air, nature-based attractions, such as zoos, nature trails, national parks, and so on. Depending on where you live, you can find all kinds of great attractions like these nearby.

Perhaps you live near a big city and want to check out the local zoo, for example, where your kids can have an amazing time seeing animals from all over the world. Or maybe you have a great park nearby, in which case you can pack up a picnic and set off together, as a family, to have a lovely day in the sun, enjoying the sights and sounds of nature all around you.

Get Them into Gardening

If you’re lucky enough to have your own backyard space with a vegetable or flower garden, you’ve already got all you need to have a lot of fun with your little ones outdoors. You can buy special, safe gardening tools just for kids and step outside on a warm day, introducing your children to all the wonders of nature.

You’ll be able to show them how plants grow, teaching them the responsibility of caring for other living beings, explaining the science of ecosystems, and so on. Children of all ages can have fun gardening and learn a lot in the process too, and many will especially enjoy the idea of growing and eating their own foods.

Camping and Hiking

Another amazing way to have fun and keep kids of all ages connected to nature is to plan some kind of camping trip or hike through the wilderness near you. Some of the happiest memories of a young person’s life can be made while camping, and it’s an incredible way to get in touch with the natural world and develop a genuine appreciation of the gifts that Mother Nature herself has provided.

Studies from scholarship essay writing service have shown that kids love to camp, and even those who spend a lot of time sitting behind screens can really open up and have a ton of fun enjoying activities like sleeping beneath the stars, roasting marshmallows on an open fire, and walking through the woods in search of wildlife.

Yard Work

It might sound like a chore at first, but yard work can actually be a lot of fun, especially when you take it on as a family. Grab some tools and gardening supplies and set aside a couple of hours on a summer day for you and your children to get outside and have some fun together, while also improving the look of your outdoor spaces.

You can cover the basics, like digging up weeds and clearing away leaves, or you and your child can come up with your very own backyard project, like painting your fence a new color or building an outdoor structure of some kind. Children can have a lot of fun building and creating, especially when they feel like a part of the process, so make sure to ask them for ideas and allow them to choose key aspects like colors and paints.

Get Creative

So far, we’ve looked at just a few ways to keep the kids connected to nature and have a great time in the process, but there are countless other options out there, and you can create many more! It doesn’t matter what your day job happens to be, whether you’re an office worker, an essay writer, an accountant, or something else, you can always use your imagination to create fun, inspiring ideas.

Why not encourage your child to start their own bug collection? Or create your very own ‘Backyard Olympics’ for the whole family to participate in? Or download a treasure hunt app and head out into nature in search of hidden prizes? The options are limitless, and together with your children, you can surely create some wonderful ideas.

Justin Osborne is a essay writer, he loves to share his thoughts and opinions about education, writing and blogging with other people on different blogs and forums. Currently, he is working as a content marketer at scholarship essay writing service.

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Teaching Kids the Art of Film Making

Your child is interested in film making, but you aren’t sure how to help. Nurturing a child’s creativity and desires is a good thing, and the following are a few ways you can nurture this passion. Teaching kids the art of film making is not that difficult.

Education

One thing you can do is encourage your kid to learn about filmmaking. The best way to do this is to send your kid to a film class or camp. You can also have your child take a few classes online that will delve into this art form. Your kid is going to learn how to use some of the equipment and how to properly tell a story.

The passion and the eye is inside your kid. What education will do is refine things a bit. It may be a good idea to use free resources first, like library resources to see if your kid is willing to continue his or her education. You don’t want to pay money for a class and find out your child doesn’t want to put much work into this.

Invest in the Equipment

Helping your kid learn how to film is just one step. The next thing you can do is invest in the equipment. Your kid is going to need all sorts of tools to tell stories through this medium. You don’t have to spend thousands of dollars on this. Have your kid start with older cameras and recording devices.

Some of the common equipment can be bought used online at reasonable prices. You’ll be allowing your child to get familiar with the equipment. Accidents happen when you’re learning how to handle a camera, and it’s better to have those accidents with items that didn’t cost too much.

Get the Software

You also want to invest in the software you’re kid is going to need as he or she films. For example, your kid is going to need a good editing program if he or she wants to learn how to speed up a video or how to add transitions between scenes.

Depending on how complex the editing software is, it could take your kid a long time to get the hang of it. Talk to your kid about this before you introduce the software. You want him or her to understand that patience is key when it comes to mastering these types of software systems. The school you send your kid to might teach some of these programs to add finishing touches to your kid’s movies.

Get Involved in the Storytelling

Okay, your kids won’t have a crew of workers and actors to work with. Some of the lucky ones will be able to enlist friends to help them tell stories, but the chances are you’ll have to jump in from time to time. Allow your kids to direct the story and run the shoot.

It might be a good idea to consider talking to family members or friends who can lend a hand from time to time. If you are asked to be an actor, learn the lines your kid gives you, and be the best actor you can. As strange as this might be at the beginning, it’s good to participate in your child’s dream like this. You can bond with your kid if you join him or her with this passion.

Start Showcasing the Projects

Letting your child tell a few stories on film is one thing, but now you’ve got to show them their work on the big screen. You could rent a screen from your local theater, but that’s a bit expensive. You can do the next best thing, which is to show these movies at home. Consider purchasing a real home theater system complete with a projector and a screen.

These systems allow you to create the theater experience at home. Depending on the placement of your projector, you could make the image look quite large, which is going to be cool for everyone. Ask your family members and friends to come to the screening of your kid’s movies. Make this screening as special as possible. Bring the popcorn, and ask folks to dress up. Do everything you can to show your kid how special the stories are.

Now, you know what to do for your young filmmaker. Talk to your kids to find out what they want from you as they work on their passion.

What would you add to this to add to teaching kids the art of film making?

teaching kids film making

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Empower Your Child with Self Growth This Valentines

Romance from Indian movies is way more cheesy than any Valentines celebration can ever be. But Valentines day is very much a western/commercial influence in most multicultural homes. What can this celebration of love actually teach children, you ask? Specially during Covid, when it’s hard enough to do things outside.
If we don’t fall into the materialistic trap, what is Valentine’s Day but another excuse to spend time with those we care the most about. And recognize the love we are surrounded by.Love that celebrates the tantrums, growing pains, and sick days when cooking was forgotten and messy house and hair ruled! What we are doing is marking this day with more memories of time together that make us laugh and our eyes well up with tears.This love is more pure than any other. It takes hard work. Every. Single. Day!In my book Strong Roots Have No Fear, I talk about how important it is for children to see that love is so much more about respect and nurturing. And I wish my kids can see that kind of love, in the people they eventually look towards for support through a lifetime of struggles and triumphs. How will they learn unless we as parents show them that it matters.

So makes this valentines special in these simple ways –

Creative Writing Exercises

Use this time to help your kids build a conversation around growth mindset. Download our free journal for valentines day. Prompts like help build writing skills and conversations around love and self empowerment.

Download our exclusive creative writing printables for promoting a growth mindset .

 

Handmade Keepsakes Help Practice Creativity and Reading Skills

Fancy gifts have been replaced by keepsakes. Handprints. Footprints. You name it, we have it. Pinterest is full of simple crafts to do with your little ones no matter how old they are.

Simple heart cut out of papers, with loving messages written on them is a great way too. You could also choose to

Make adorable Monster Pom poms
Easy Valentines Pop Up Cards

This year I’m gifting both the kids books I got from the local library sale as they both enjoy reading. Also, I did the thing where I posted a note of what I love about them on their door. We are going to read them all on V-day. It is paramount kids learn early that gifts/acts of care are not about BIG gifts.

Really See Ourselves as Parents

To love another, we need to know ourselves better.

If we want to improve on ourselves, we can only ask our children and they will be happy to tell us.

And who better to give you a real perspective that the little ones who have no filter. Every year I ask my kids questions. I record their answers in a journal or a fancy card that later goes into the journal. Their answers are super cute and so heartwarming to go back to and read. It’s fascinating to see the world as they see it.

  • What does dad like to do?
  • What’s something mom should do less of?
  • What’s something dad should do more of?
  • What do you love to do with mom?

As the kids get older, I can make the questions help me see myself in a better light. It helps the kids learn how to self evaluate as well.

A Themed Dinner Builds Cultural Awareness & Cooking Skills

Restaurants everywhere, ANYWAY used to be a hassle. So, every year our meal is home cooked and made fancy for us. Something to a theme, that we can cook together. Discuss different cultural foods and add a twist to dishes you already know. We have been doing a lot of baking: brownies, cakes, cupcakes.  Decorating together. Cooking together. Setting the table as a family, are all fun things to do. The kids do whatever they can. We have a blast creating memories while learning kitchen skills.

Plus cooking is a great way to build on math and learning many related skills.

Decorating the Home Helps Organization Skills

I always do a little something to make the home feel a bit more festive. My son is older now, and my daughter has a lot of opinions. So what do we do? We head to the dollar store and brainstorm a few items appropriate for Valentine’s Day. Then we go home and decorate together. Nothing too lavish ever mind you, but I personally enjoy shopping with my little ones. Getting inventive with little is certainly a must have talent.

Games to Bond and Build Sportsman Spirit

We make it a super special night with games. I love playing games with the kiddos. The laughter, hugs, and memories we create as we cheat, lie, and run around are truly priceless. You never feel as young as when you play with little ones and relearn the lessons of life with them. If you like, you can grab our free ebook for games, that can actually be played with anyone in the family.

Games are the best way to bond and build sportsman spirit.

Beats to Your Feet get the Body Moving

We make sure to spend a part of the evening dancing our hearts out. It is so therapeutic. and the kids love getting their wiggles out. When we put on some slow songs, the kids get into the fun and slow dance with mom and dad too. Seeing moms and dads enjoying so with the kids, shows how important activity is to mark the occasion. Equality in genders and how to treat someone you care about is something that comes across in the small things.

Talk About the Four Pillars of Love

Kindness, Actions, Appreciation & Respect

Our celebrations may be a few of these things, or all of these, but sometime during the festivities, we make sure to discuss the four pillars on which all love stands. We converse about what are the different ways we can be kind and show our appreciation for someone. We discuss about the importance of respect and how we can care for our family members and friends. This conversation for sure lasts all year long.

Our creative writing printables help with that for sure.

Wishing you all a wonderful Valentine’s Day as you shower your endearment on those who matter the most.

Share in the comments below how your celebrate this special day.

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Sparkling me Series

A Glimpse of Our Creative Writing Printables

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Be Sure to Address the Positive Things Your Child Does

As a parent, you probably put a lot of focus on telling your child what not to do. It’s easy to get into the habit of “catching” them doing something negative so you can correct the problem. While there isn’t anything wrong with that and it’s an effective way to teach them what they should and shouldn’t be doing, your child also needs reinforcement when they do something positive.

Criticism and compliments should be equally given to children, no matter their age. Think of your boss at work constantly pointing out the things you do wrong, but never offering up words of encouragement or telling you that you’re doing a good job. Chances are, it would start to affect your mood, your thought process, and even how well you function at work.

Children need encouragement and praise, too. It can help with their overall growth and development and allow them to become confident and self-assured as they grow. It’s a parenting style that could make a big difference in how your child sees themselves.

Let’s look closely at why it’s important to address the positive things your child does and how you can do it more often.

The Problem With the Negative

Pointing out things your child is doing wrong provides an opportunity to address and correct those things. But, only focusing on those negative things can end up doing more harm than good. When you are constantly correcting your child’s actions or behaviors, you could be causing them extra stress. This can lead to both short and long-term issues, including:

  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Changes in appetite
  • Fatigue
  • Tension
  • Headaches

Too much stress can even lead to mental health issues like anxiety or depression. Having no positive reinforcement might also make your child feel like they don’t do anything right, which can be a huge blow to their confidence and self-esteem. They might also start to look at the world through a negative, pessimistic lens, which can hold them back from opportunities.

When you create a healthy balance between pointing out negative and positive things, you can teach your child to accentuate the positive, and they will learn how to build themselves up and be more confident in everything they do.

Understanding Your Child’s Behaviors

It’s easy to get frustrated with your child when you feel they’re doing something they aren’t supposed to. But, you have to remember that almost everything in a young child’s life is a learning experience. As a parent, you have the unique opportunity to guide that experience for them, one way or another. While you might jump to conclusions about why they do certain things or exhibit certain behaviors, one of the best things you can do is to work toward a better understanding of those actions and behaviors.

For example, your child may be acting out in certain ways due to a bigger issue, like a physical problem. Do they seem to have trouble focusing on one thing for too long? Are they doing poorly in school? Instead of punishing them for such things right away, talk to them about it. You might learn more about the underlying cause, which may even be something like a vision problem that is making life a bit more difficult for them.

It’s also important to consider any other life changes your child may be going through, including:

  • A divorce or separation
  • Moving
  • Changing schools
  • The death of a loved one

By having a better understanding of why your child might be acting a certain way, you can teach them how to change those behaviors into positive actions and work through things in healthy, effective ways.

How to Focus On the Positive Things

Strangely enough, it can often feel easier to address negative behaviors than positive ones. But, you can be positive with your child and still enforce a lesson with positive punishment. Positive punishments:

  • Have meaning
  • Are black and white
  • Solve problems
  • Hold your child accountable for their behavior

But, it’s important to not only focus on punishment and behavioral changes. How can you, instead, pay more attention and address the positive things your child does?

First, again, remember that everything is a learning experience. One of the best things you can do is to teach your child to ask for help in situations where they might be struggling. Kids want to be independent, but encouraging them to ask for help gives them a better opportunity to learn. It also allows you to reinforce positivity in the way you help and guide them.

Focusing on the positive also means encouraging your children to explore and dive deeper into the things that naturally seem to interest them. When your child has more confidence and self-esteem due to positive reinforcement, they may have an easier time learning something new, like a musical instrument or a sport. In turn, that gives you more opportunities to focus on the positive things they’re doing.

So, the next time you’re tempted to scold your child or call them out on negative behavior, make sure you follow it up by addressing some positive things your child does, as well. It’s a small change in your parenting style that can make a big difference.

 

Tools That Help You Protect Your Home and Your Family During a Crisis (002)

Tools to Protect Your Family During a Crisis

Is your family prepared if a natural disaster should hit your area? Any type of community crisis or a major problem that affects your home could cause significant problems. The professionals that would usually help may be impacted as well or may be busy helping other families ahead of yours. Here are several tools you need to protect your family and home when disaster strikes.

Power Supply

Homes that are at risk for losing power during a storm or a blackout should be equipped with generators for emergency use. A generator is easy to operate and can be safely stored out of the way until it is needed. Solar generator models with a backup battery are a great way to protect your house and your family when the power goes out. Creating on average between 10,000 and 20,000 watts, a small home generator can cover a portion of your home whereas a larger one can be used for the entire structure.

Light

Keep batteries on hand for flashlights and fuel on hand for lanterns as your fill-in light sources. Store the batteries as recommended by the manufacturer to preserve their use as long as possible. Check your flashlights every few months to make sure they still work, and replace worn-out ones as needed. Keep your lantern fuel locked up until needed to protect children and pets. You may want to install solar lights along the porch, patio, and garage for night-time outdoor light if needed.

Medical Kit

Fill a pill container for seven days with all the tablets you need for each day. Keep it handy in an accessible cupboard for emergencies. Replace the pills if they expire before being used, and replace them with fresh ones. Stock your medical kit with first aid items like bandages and over-the-counter pain relievers as well as topical antibiotic cream. A thermometer and a blood pressure cuff would be a good idea as well. Don’t forget to stash a week’s supply of your pet’s medicines, too.

Communication

Smart phones may not work during a local or regional disaster if the cell tower is damaged or inoperable. But keep your phone charged and the charger cord within reach in the event you are able to make calls. Do the same for your computer or iPad to ensure they can be used to contact others if an emergency occurs.

You can also look into investing in a satellite phone or radio. If cell towers or the internet are down, you may need other ways to communicate with people in your family and with authorities. Walkie talkies can be useful if your group might have to split up.

While it is stressful to think about disasters that could upend your life, planning ahead will help to mitigate the problems that could arise. Prepare now so you and your family will be ready later if necessary.

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