Once the school doors close for the summer, a lot of what kids have spent their school year learning falls to the wayside, making the transition back to class much harder since many lessons must be re-learned. But with some insight from the tutors at Sylvan Learning Center, there are easy steps you can take the make sure that your children continue to use what they have learned and to make sure they are prepared for the fall.Read More
Summer does not officially begin until June 21st. However, your kids are either out of school or your little one’s new summer schedule is beginning. Every family has these seasonal new schedules, and we thought we would share a few tips to survive the summer break!Read More
School days are winding down, but education does not stop over the summer. These 3 tips can help you get the most out of the end of the current school year and prepare for the next.Read More
Summertime is a fun time for new adventures and bonding more with your children, but the heat and “I’m bored” can cause any parents nerves to be a bit on edge. We have 3 easy parenting tips to help keep your summer fun and not frustrating.
- Focus on Fun – Summer is a time for memories and doing things a bit off schedule. While you will want to stay on routine (children work best with routine), you can be flexible for fun. Take some time at the beginning of the week to plan at least one fun activity every day. It can be as simple as running through the sprinkler for 30 minutes, making a simple craft or taking a nature walk.
- Set Rules – Just because it’s fun time doesn’t mean the regular rules don’t apply. Be consistent with your parenting rules of sharing, kindness, cleaning up, etc. Kids need consistency, not chaos.
- Be aware – Are you planning too many activities that your kids are constantly exhausted or too little so they are bored? Taking a few minutes to be aware of how your kids are responding to your summer activities can help you adjust accordingly.
What summer parenting tips do you have?
School is out for the summer, but that doesn’t mean your child’s reading should stop. You can make summer reading fun with this summer reading tree. For every book your child reads, his or her reading tree receives a leaf. Make a game of it by trying to have the tree full of leaves by summer’s end!
What you need:
- White paper
- Non-toxic glue or tape
- Brown marker
- Scissors (adult use only)
- Different colors of construction paper for the leaves
What to do:
- Have your child draw the trunk of a tree on the white construction paper.
- Label the tree with your child’s name to personalize it.
- Cut out leaves for the tree so your child sees them which will encourage him or her to want to fill the tree up with leaves.
- For every book that your child reads write the name of the book and author on the leaf and glue or tape it to the tree.
- Hang the tree in a prominent place to encourage your child to read.
Be sure to keep the tree as a memento. It will be fun to pull out at a graduation to show the seeds of learning that were planted early on.
Summertime is the perfect time to get outside with your kids and go to the fair! Just google county fairs in your area and plan for a day of fun. A few tips for making your time at the fair safe and fun!
- Plan ahead – You will be outside so dress comfortably & sensibly! Don’t forget to wear sunscreen and a hat.
- Be smart – Be sure your child has your phone number, understands stranger danger and knows a designated spot to meet you in case you get separated.
- Riding rides – Respect height & weight requirements for rides. If a ride looks unstable or unsafe, skip it.
- Keep clean – There are lots of cute animals at state fairs. Be sure your child is gentle with the animals and if the animals lick your child wash their hands or apply hand sanitizer.
- Limit Candy – Cotton candy, rock candy and limitless candy choices can be a child’s delight, but be sure to limit candy intake so your time at the fair isn’t cut short by a tummy ache!
Summer means more time outside with your kids. Being outdoors has many benefits, but a few hidden summer dangers to be aware of while enjoying the nice weather.
- Sunburn can make a child severely ill. See our safe sun tips here.
- Heat stroke is a reality for babies and children on a hot day. Keep them hydrated and take breaks when they are playing outside.
- Hot cars cause many deaths during the summer. Be sure your children know cars are not toys and they should not play in them. Keep your car locked when it is in your driveway so that your children cannot crawl in and get locked inside. Never leave your child in a hot car even if you are running a quick errand.
- Metal playground equipment can burn children. On hot days, stay away from metal playground equipment.
- Open windows present fall risks. Be sure to have window guards on any windows accessible to children.
These 5 easy, safety tips can help you have a worry-free summer you and your kids will enjoy.
Sunburn can happen so easily during these nice-weather months when our kids are constantly outside. A few preventative tips can help your child avoid sunburn so she can enjoy playing outside without pain.
- Stay out of direct sun as much as possible during peak times (10am -4pm).
- Wear a wide brimmed hat. If possible get one that also covers the neck. This is especially important for babies.
- Always put on sunblock even on cloudy days! Talk to your physician about what SPF is best for your child.
- Have child wear UV blocking sunglasses when outdoors.
- Be sure to have child wear loose fitting clothes so sweat can evaporate. Try to have as much of child covered as possible. We know those little swimsuits look so cute on your child, but opt for ones that cover more and have sun protection.
Summertime is a time to be outdoors and have fun, but sunburn can have serious consequences. Follow these easy 5 tips for healthy, summer skin! Check back next week for more summer tips!
Looking to get fit this summer? Kolcraft is teaming up with Chicago’s Active Moms’ Club for their very first summer Fitness Challenge.
The Active Moms’ Club offers exercise classes for both pre-natal and post-natal moms in the Chicago area. The classes are a great chance to work out and mingle with other moms, plus, you can bring your baby to all classes!
As part of our Fitness Challenge, moms will be rewarded each time they attend an Active Moms’ Club class with an entry into a raffle to win great Kolcraft prizes including:
- Sealy Crib Mattresses
- Sesame Street Elmo Adventure Potty Chairs
- Jeep Sport 2-in-1 Baby Carriers
Moms who attend a total of at least 12 classes during the summer will automatically be entered to win our Grand Prize of a brand new 2012 Jeep Jogging Stroller! Join on us on Thursday, May 3rd in Lincoln Park’s Oz Park as we kick off the Fitness Challenge with a Biceps, Babies & Buggies stroller fitness class followed by a fun get-together in the park! A special snack will be provided! To learn more about the Active Moms’ Club and to register for class, visit www.activemomsclub.com. Moms who attend the classes will also have a sneak-peek at the jogger before it’s in stores, and the opportunity to try it out themselves!
Planning to come to class? Be sure to watch the video and mention it to a Kolcraft representative for an extra entry into our raffle. Looking for even more ways to win? Answer the following question at Thursday’s picnic for another entry into our monthly raffle:
What are your fitness goals for the summer?
Even if you aren’t in the Chicago area, you can still get fit with us! Check out the video below for more information on our Fitness Challenge, as well as some helpful tips you can use when walking with your stroller.
There is nothing like a yummy popsicle treat to cool off you and your children on a hot summer day. We recently came across this Frosty Tropical Pops recipe from Kraft. We love that it’s easy to make and uses real fruit!
What you need:
- 4 cups of strawberries
- 1 tsp Kool-AID Sugar Free Tropical Punch Flavor Low Calorie Soft Drink (For a healthier alternative use real fruit juice instead)
What to do:
- Blend ingredients in blender until smooth; pour into 6 paper cups or reusable popsicle molds.
- Insert wooden pop stick into center of each cup. Freeze 3 hours or until firm.
- Remove pops from cups just before serving.
What is your favorite summertime treat?