Posts tagged ‘summer activities’
Spring is in full throttle and summer is right around the corner! Now is the perfect time to get outdoors and explore your gardens! Finding little creepy crawlies with your little ones is not only a fun exercise, it instill an inherent curiosity in your child. That curiosity will push them to explore and learn about not only the great outdoors, but all aspects of the world. Education should inspire them to find out more, not stifle their natural wonder.
Take your little one(s) on a nature walk, strolling slowly in your back yard or community garden. Take 5 minutes in each area, observing things carefully, to see what you can find! Keep a look out for lovely little ladybugs. Here are 10 fun facts about ladybugs to teach your kiddos:
- Ladybugs are also called Lady beetles or Ladybirds.
- The male ladybug is usually smaller than the female.
- A ladybug beats its wings 85 times a second when it flies.
- The spots on a ladybug fade, as the ladybug gets older.
- In many countries, ladybugs are considered to be good luck.
- Aphids are a ladybug’s favorite food, making them good for your garden.
- There are over 5000 different kinds of ladybugs worldwide.
- A female ladybug will lay more than 1000 eggs in her lifetime.
- Ladybugs chew from side to side and not up and down like people do.
- Ladybugs are all around us! Ladybugs can be found in trees, shrubs, fields, beaches, and even houses!
What you Need:
- Egg carton or round cardboard piece
- black and red markers, paint or crayons
- scissors or whole puncher
- Pipe cleaners
- Optional: googly eyes
- Separate one cup from an egg carton or use any round cardboard pieces you have on hand.
- Using markers or paint to color the egg carton cup red. Then, using black paint/markers, color in the head, and make spots on the body.
- Using the point of a scissors or a hole puncher, an adult should make 6 small holes (3 on each side) at the base of the cup (these will be for the legs. Make 2 small holes (for antennae) where the top of the head will be.
- Insert a black pipe cleaner into each a side hole and out the other side for the legs. Use half a pipe cleaner for the antennae.
- Glue on googly eyes or paint on white eyes.
- Take your ladybug into the garden and try to spot some real ones!
This Simple Recipe is Tasty and Cute!
1-small red apple
2tsp.- strawberry cream cheese (low-fat)
1/8 cup- raisins or dried cranberries
1 or 2-red or black seedless grapes
Optional: lettuce leaves for garnish if desired.
Alternatives: peanut or almond butter instead of cream cheese. Round cereal instead of raisins, a small pinch of cinnamon. Use your imagination and what you have on hand in the kitchen.
Wash the apples and lettuce. Arrange a few lettuce leaves on each plate. Cut apples in half from stem to bottom. Remove seeds. Lay each half of apple cut side down on
cutting board and cut in half from stem to bottom. With skin side up place both halves of apple on top of lettuce. Put a small amount of cream cheese in-between the apple
halves to adhere the apple back together (enough to have a small amount squish out the top). Stick raisins to cream cheese down the middle of apple, then use a small dab of cream cheese to adhere the raisins (see picture below) on each wing. Cut a grape in half and use cream cheese to stick it to one end of your ladybug apple for the head.
This is a perfect recipe for adults and kids to make together. It’s fun, easy, cute, and so tasty. And did Chipper mention it’s healthy too? “Healthy before sweet, can’t be beat!”
Looking for some fun family “workouts” that feel more like play? Check out these simple outdoor activities that will get everyone in your family off the couch and help you bond while burning some calories. Getting active outdoors isn’t only good for your body but also you and your child’s social and emotional wellness. As Chipper likes to say, “Healthy Habits Grow Happy Hearts!” Try a few with mom (or with your kids) to celebrate Mother’s Day this week and have some fun while keeping fit!
1. Hula Hooping
Hula hoops became a hot toy in the late 1950s and are still a lot of fun for families. Hula hooping can burn more than 500 calories an hour — not bad for a $10 piece of plastic! Hoops come in a variety of sizes for children and adults, and weighted hoops for more advanced “hoopers” will give you even more of a workout. Try a little more variation than just the normal standing hula hooping with these 3 Great Hula Hoop Exercises for Kids.
2. Jump Roping
Jumping rope burns an estimated 600 calories an hour. Jump ropes are also cheap, starting under $10. Also, because jump ropes are so portable, parents can pack one in their suitcase for workouts while they travel. Who knows — maybe Dad is a future double dutch champion!
3. Skating and Scooting
Have some old Rollerblades or Razor Scooters hanging out in the garage? You probably forgot how fun some quality time on wheels can be! Dust them off and cruise around the neighborhood or a nearby park with your kids. Kicking along on a scooter is sure to get your heart rate up. And in-line skating burns at least 300 calories an hour for adults. Consider doing a scavenger hunt to keep you moving.
4. Boogying Down
Your family loves singing along with the radio in the car. Why not dance along to the music when you’re at home? Having a family dance party lets parents and kids get silly while also getting some good cardio exercise. Hip hop dancing can burn about 400 calories an hour, so turn up the beats indoors or outside!
5. Playing Frisbee
Frisbee has a cult following, with hundreds of colleges now offering “ultimate Frisbee” (a Frisbee game similar to soccer) as a school sport. Your family could be full of Frisbee champs! With plastic discs starting at $5, it’s worth a try. Frisbee golf is another fun disc game.
6. Walking — or Hiking — with the Dog
What has fur, four legs, and is dying to be your exercise pal? That’s right: the family dog. Studies have shown that owning a dog can make you healthier, in part because you’re likely to take more walks. But if your daily walks have become more like a chore, infuse some fun as well as fitness. Go as a family, pick different routes each night, and throw in some jogging.
7. Playground Playtime
Just as kids love rec time during the school day, they’ll enjoy romping around the playground when school is out of session. When is the last time Dad tried his hand at crossing the monkey bars or doing some pull-ups? And when was Mom last on the swings, pumping her legs to get sky-high? Playgrounds offer fun physical activity for everyone — even if you’re just chasing the kids around.
8. Tag, You’re It, and Other Outdoor Games
Tag, kickball, wiffle ball, kickball… you name it! Neighborhood games may be waning in the digital age, but they’re as fun as ever and hopefully due for a comeback. Challenge your family members to some friendly competition, and enjoy the great outdoors like it’s the good ol’ days. Here are some great ideas from Chipper!
It’s just about time when the kids are going back to school at last! According to the National Association of School Psychologists, getting a new school year off to a good start can influence children’s attitude, confidence, and performance both socially and academically. The transition from August to September can be difficult for both children and parents after a long summer of broken routines and various trips. Even children who are eager to return to class must adjust to the greater levels of activity, structure, and, for some, pressures associated with school life.
The degree of adjustment depends on the child, but parents and family can help their children manage the increased pace of life by starting early, being realistic, and staying Chipper! Re-establish your regular bedtime and eating schedules early so it won’t be as hard to set once school actually starts. Have your children do some scholastic activities to prepare them mentally to start stuffing their little brains! Restart their memorization skills with Chipper’s fun Matching Game App.
Your child will benefit most from one or two activities that are fun, reinforce social development, and teach new skills! Chipper’s coloring pages App are easy, no-mess activities for your kids to play while on-the-go, shopping for back-to-school. For those of you with preschoolers, Chipper’s Pillow Backpack is the perfect item for your little one’s to hold a few necessities while having something to rest their little heads on during nap time! Sing-a-long songs with all of Chipper’s friends are a fun way for them to shape up their reading skills and dance moves. Check out Chipper’s brand new Amazon Webstore to see all our great school items, including reusable totes, fun backpacks with matching lunch bags, and much more! Get Chipper with your kids this school year!
Recycled crafts not only make great gift for friends and family. Making and buying recycle crafts benefit our environment and reduce waste! Recycle crafts also help promote traditional crafts that are fading as people opt for cheap mass produced items. By buying or making handcrafted gifts, you can help keep those skills alive! All crafts, not just those that are made from recycled material, also encourages originality and creativity. Whether you are starting with the materials and find a suitable product to create from them, or you start with the product and have to figure out what recycled items can be used to create it, it requires ingenuity. This can only benefit art and crafts in general!
Instead of tossing out bottle caps, which are not recycled and go strait to a land fill or the ocean, create cute magnets with your kids! All you need are some caps, some magazines and a pair or scissors, magnet tape (very easy to find and inexpensive), and glue!
Cut out cute images or letters to spell your little one’s name or initials to fit inside the bottle caps then glue in. Then attach a small piece of magnetic tape to the back and stick to the fridge or other metal surfaces. These custom mini magnets are great for hanging your young artists’ drawings and paintings. They can be used for spelling out messages (or spelling practice!) and also make a great gift! There’s no better gift than one made with your own to hands for someone you love. Get Chipper today and get crafty!
“Climb the mountains and get their good tidings. Nature’s peace will flow into you as sunshine into trees.”
We are definitely Chipper for Parks! Parks are places for us to clear our minds and enjoy our surrounding. They are places for our kids to free their imaginations and explore nature! Stretching over 1,200 square miles (761,268 acres) of central California, Yosemite National Park is one the largest and oldest parks in America. With almost 4 million visitors each year, it is also one of the most frequented parks in the country. It’s no wonder why so many people travel from far and wide to visit if you have ever been lucky enough to visit before. The park’s forests of Redwoods and Sequoias and it’s huge valley’s filled with waterfalls and gigantic rock formations are awe-inspiring indeed.
When famous conservationist, John Muir, arrived to Yosemite in 1868 from his beautiful home land of Scotland, he was changed for life and inspired others to visit this magical place, leading the area’s way towards being a National Park. He also spurred scientific interest and was one of the first to theorize that the major landforms in Yosemite Valley were created by large alpine glaciers. After President Theodore Roosevelt visited Yosemite in 1903 to visit John Muir, he said, “”It was like lying in a great solemn cathedral, far vaster and more beautiful than any built by the hand of man.”
Yosemite is full of opportunities for fun activities in the great outdoors! Explore Yosemite by hiking or biking. Spend some time with a park ranger learning about Yosemite or get a broad overview by taking a bus tour. You can teach your children to give back to the planet and help Yosemite by volunteering for a few hours (Memorial Day to Labor Day).
Your kids will love becoming apart of the historical Junior Ranger or Little Cub! The Junior Rangers reach back to the Yosemite Junior Nature School, organized in June 1930 and lasting until 1954. In 2010, more than 24,000 children became Yosemite Junior Rangers (up from 6,000 in 2007). Learn more about Junior Rangers with these links. Consider visiting the Nature Center at Happy Isles (summer only) or the Yosemite Valley Visitor Center for interactive exhibits.
Don’t forget to earn your FREE Chipper for Parks Badge on your next park visit by posting a picture of you and your tot in nature on Chipper’s Facebook Page, or give back to a park of your choice– in your name– when you purchase a badge here!
The Yosemite Guide has information about all scheduled activities and hours of operation for services.
Visit here for more information on this national treasure.
Some parents and educators lament that technology is taking away from their kid’s natural and organic childhoods. Yes, hours upon hours of watching TV or playing video games is not a good thing for young, developing minds but various studies have shown that interactive games or apps and sing along DVDs and music are excellent educational tools. One study, organized by the Education Development Center, Center for Children and Technology in 2001 for the Labor, HHS, and Education Appropriations Subcommittee (United States Senate), found that using educational technology improved test scores and early literary skills.
Not only are apps a great way to excite kids to learn and immerse themselves in various subjects, apps can be specially designed to different kinds of children with different learning needs. Whether they are dyslexic, autistic, or need more help with their math, there are apps that were specifically innovated to benefits various individuals! More and more, educators and parents are turning to iPads and apps to help inform and prepare our future generations. What better way to prepare your kids or students for the newest technology in the workplace, than by giving it to them as a part of their education? Apps are inexpensive, easy to use, and your kids/students will love you!
Chipper’s iPhone app was created to excite kids of all ages and needs to get outdoors and teach them about our diverse environment. Help your child develop their analytical skills and have some fun on your next road trip or flight! Apps are great for on-the-go entertainment and are also a wonderful tool to avoid the summer learning slump. Check out this article about Chipper’s app to learn more and see a user review!
Please enter COUPON CODE “40ipads” and 50% of your purchase will go to purchasing iPads for Children with Special Needs through the non-profit Growing Up For Good, and in support of A4CWSN, Apps for Children with Special Needs. Shop now through August 15, 2012. Each purchase includes a special Chipper For Parks badge. Download Chipper’s iPhone app for on-the-go fun! Like Chipper’s Facebook Page for special deals and free downloads!Here is a list of other Apps designed for kids with special needs: http://www.mainecite.org/attachments/article/146/24470331-iPhone-iPad-and-iPod-touch-Apps-for-Special-Education.pdf Here is a list of sites devoted to giving teachers and educators the best ways to use the iPad and Apps in the classroom: http://www.techlearning.com/default.aspx?tabid=67&entryid=513
Are you Chipper For Parks? If so, join us in raising awareness and necessary funds to support programs – from local playgrounds
to our national park systems. Due to continued government cutbacks funds are being diverted and parks and playgrounds are being closed. Chipper and friends are on a mission to connect and celebrate with families and communities across the country.
Help kids earn their badge by stepping onto a new path! A path that connects and provides everyone with an opportunity to play, explore, and learn about our parks and environment.
By purchasing the Chipper For Parks badge you are helping raise funds which will directly support:
- Educational programs for schools and communities, underserved children and all families
- Conservation and revitalization programs – from clearing trails to planting flowers and trees, to the repair and maintenance
- Sustainability programs – keep the parks open!
Chipper For Parks Badge: $5
Includes Chipper Kit filled with play-based ideas to help educate and connect in your schools and communities.
Click Here to purchase one today and start supporting our parks!
The Chipper For Parks badge is a colorful, embroidered, iron on patch made in the USA. Wear your badge proudly and encourage other kids to join Chipper’s path to the great outdoors.
Proceeds will directly benefit educational and community programs, trail maintenance and keeping our parks open. You can leave a park name and we will contribute directly in your name. Up to $2.50 of each purchase will directly support programs.
Your Chipper For Parks badge also includes a kit of ideas and activities you can launch in your classroom or community. Come together to help our park systems.
Stay connected and learn how we are all making a difference through our daily updates and blogs. If you would like to become a true Chipper Ambassador, let us know at your time of purchase and we will get you ready to go into the great outdoors – leading a new generation of children and families onto a path to happiness and health.
Let’s Go Chipper!
“Giving is the secret of abundance.” — Sivananda
All of us want our children to grow up to be responsible and generous. Giving them the opportunities to help out around the house with chores or simple tasks, such as cooking dinner or folding laundry, plants these seeds of independence and reliability. Making opportunities for your kids to play and interact with their peers and siblings help them learn to communicate and hone their interpersonal skills for years to come, important skills for whatever they do in life.
Let’s Go Chipper is an Eco-educational series of apps, books, and community programs that encourage your little one’s to get outside and play, learning about the environment and growing in nature! Our newest book, “Helping Hands,” is a great way to inspire your little one’s to help out their family, friends, and community! A portion of the proceeds from the sale of this book support programs that benefit the positive physical and emotional well being of underserved children. To learn more, please visit www.letsgochipper.com. Bellow are 5 ways to encourage habits of kindness and service in your children on a daily basis.
1. Make service to others a family affair
You hear it time and again: Parents are the most influential role models and the best teachers for children. Children watch what adults do. Preaching to them to volunteer/feed others/help out at the local food pantry will likely fall on deaf ears if they don’t see the moms and dads doing it, too. Get involved in a local community service project at your local park! There are tons of opportunities and if you share your park service story with us on our Facebook page here, we will send you a FREE Chipper for Parks badge! Or purchase your own badge here and we will donate a portion of the proceeds in YOUR name to a park of YOUR choice!
2. Talk about it
Emphasize that not everyone has hot meals to eat and lots of clothes to wear. Children don’t typically recognize this, and it’s up to parents to teach them. Let them know about the project, and how they can offer a helping hand to those in need. Have them go through their clothes that no longer fit them and take a little trip together to drop off old clothes and toys at your nearest Good Will.
3. Involve children in a regular or semi-regular basis
When participating in community volunteer work, find something that can be done at least a few times each year. This doesn’t mean you have to fill backpacks with school supplies at the local community center or serve meals at the local food pantry every week. A consistent volunteer activity will stick in a child’s mind if they participate once a month, or even once every few months.
“It’s important to consider the basic logistics of any volunteer opportunity. If the opportunity is close by, a commitment to help out on a weekly basis may be fine. If it’s farther away, you may need to commit to helping on a monthly basis instead.”
4. Make sure your child can be actively involved in the service or project
Don’t expect to take children — especially young ones — to an activity where they have to sit and watch. They won’t want to keep going, and it entirely misses the point of including them in the first place. Compassionate Kids also advises parents to consider both their abilities and their children’s abilities when deciding on the kinds of community projects to participate in. Don’t overwhelm you or your kids–helping out should be a fun learning experience.
5. Use everyday opportunities to teach kindness
Teach children that some of the best ways to volunteer and help others is to simply do it as opportunities are available. In other words, kindness to others doesn’t have to be a structured event or community-planned charity work. The whole family can get involved in:
- Giving water to and offering help to a family whose car is broken-down on the road.
- Donating money, clothing, or toys to a family in need of assistance.
- Preparing and taking meals to those who have recently lost loved ones, had babies, or have family members in the hospital.
If showing kindness to others is a part of their upbringing, it’s easier for children to make it a consistent habit in adulthood. Make it the norm, not the exception, for you and your family. Get Chipper and get helping today!
Here are more community service ideas for children and resources for parents:
- Raising Children Who Care: Volunteering Ideas for Kids by Silvana Clark
- Community Service: A Family’s Guide to Getting Involved by KidsHealth.org
The craft possibilities are endless when you go through your recycling bin! Recycle crafts help kids learn to trust their own ideas, build creative confidence, and envision new purposes fro common objects. For example, an ordinary egg carton can become the perfect home for your little one’s rock collection! And if they don’t have a rock collection already, this craft will encourage them to explore outside, whether in your yard or your local park. Searching for colorful
First, choose your egg carton! Use acrylic paint with a paint brush on foam egg cartons or markers and crayons if you have cardboard egg cartons.
If using paint, plastic lid containers make the perfect artist palette!
Or you can put paint directly on the carton and spread it around. Let your child get messy and let them paint outside. Don’t forget to paint the back!
Once you paint the inside too, let it dry in the summer sun!
Now it’s time to collect some rocks! Have an adventure with you’re little one or let them loose to explore the great outdoors. Remind them to, “Play but don’t stray” while searching for the perfect dozen of cool-looking rocks for their egg carton home! Get Chipper and have fun!
Late spring and early summer means it’s gardening season! While gardener parents are probably already allowing their children to help out with the tasks, many don’t consider giving their child his own personal garden area to maintain. However, if your child is old enough and the space is available, Chipper suggests setting up a personal garden for your little one. Below are five reasons why giving your child a garden is beneficial.
1. Encourages responsibility without extreme losses:
Every parent wants to raise a responsible child with the skills to care for another living being. However, it isn’t always easy to assess your child’s capabilities if she has never been given such a task before. Instead of using small animals like goldfish or gerbils as “starter pets,” let your child manage a garden first. Plants require just enough care to teach important lessons about meeting the needs of another creature; but if something goes wrong, and they die, it’s not as devastating.
2. Teaches planning and organizational skills:
Maintaining a garden isn’t as easy as putting plants in the ground at random. A knowledgeable gardener considers the conditions wherein the chosen plants will thrive. Your child will have to plan his garden while thinking about which plants grow best in direct sunlight versus partial shade, how far apart each plant should be from the others, whether or not certain plants affect the health of others, and other concerns. Although he doesn’t have to get everything perfect the first time, introducing such ideas early on will encourage him to improve his garden every year. Making labels for each plant is another great activity they can do!
Now is the best time to encourage independence with 4th of July tomorrow! Most kids love the feeling of control they get when working on something of their own–like a garden. They gets to pick out the plants, decide when to water and weed the beds, and after all the flowers have bloomed and the veggies have grown, they decide what to do with them. This means that, instead of asking us to buy gifts for your kids to give to friends and family, they have something to give them that is more meaningful since they grew it through her own hard work with her own two hands. Or, if your chooses, they may simply keep everything to herself for a tasty dinner or snack. That kind of freedom is something children don’t enjoy too often!
4. Emphasizes the importance of plants in everyday life:
Many people and their kids these days don’t know where their food comes from!Sustainable, local food sources are becoming more popular, according to this New York Time article. You’ll know for sure that your child knows what farming entails if you let him try his hand at gardening. Not only will he know that carrots grow underground and tomatoes bush up, but he’ll have a deep understanding of the life cycle plants and how a seed, if given enough love and care, can grow into something that can nourish his body. This cycle and understanding is not only educational, it is a deeper knowledge of life that will benefit your child for the rest of their life.
5. It’s a chance to get messy and have fun:
Gardening is a chance for digging in dirt, playing with worms, picking ripe veggies, and cooling down with the hose. If that doesn’t sound like an exciting day for a child, then Chipper isn’t a squirrel! Getting outdoors is vital to children’s health and
development and caring for a garden will get them out that door more often! If you are lacking space in your backyard, check out this short video on easy indoor gardens here. Need some kids sized gardening gear? Check out this Junior Gardening Set from Let’s Go Chipper!