Creating Open-Ended Play Spaces: First Steps

When I decided to create more open-ended play spaces in our home, I wasn’t sure where to start. Even though I’ve attempted to be thoughtful about toy purchases and arts and craft supplies over the years, I’m afraid we’ve accumulated way too much stuff. And usually, I’m so busy trying to keep said stuff from literally covering our floors that I rarely pause to take a closer look. READ MORE

Planting Seeds with Kids

Planting seeds with kids is an easy and inexpensive opportunity to spend time together and teach at the same time. My children are in awe of the sprouts that emerge from what look like dry little specks. All it takes is a little soil, some seeds, simple containers, water, and a little warmth and light.

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Playing in the Snow

It’s been a mild winter here in the Pacific Northwest so we’ve ventured into the Cascade Mountains for snow play this year. We’re lucky that we don’t have to travel far to find a winter wonderland.

We’re also lucky to have a library nearby because when my kids asked, “Where does snow come from, Mommy?” my vague explanation about moisture, clouds, and temperature didn’t seem sufficient. The Story of Snow took our understanding of those lovely frozen flakes to a whole new level. READ MORE

Gardening with Kids

Dig in (literally)! Gardening is the perfect opportunity to connect with your kids and nature, and experience some teachable fun.

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Science Experiments: Nurturing Curiosity

Kids love science experiments and it’s a great way to nurture their curiosity. Whether it’s slowing down to admire ice crystals on sparkling winter leaves or watching an airplane leave contrails across the sky, I never want my young scientists to lose their sense of awe and wonder.

There are many ways to encourage curiosity but science experiments (a la Steve Spangler’s books) are a favorite with us these days.  READ MORE