10 Charming Christmas Tales for Kids

Themed books can help the holidays come alive for kids!  Of course there are the classics – Twas The Night Before Christmas, How the Grinch Stole Christmas, The Polar Express – but if you’re looking for a few fresh Christmas Stories to update your holiday library, here are 10 ideas you may not know about yet.

Themed books can help the holidays come alive for kids!  Of course there are the classics - Twas The Night Before Christmas, How the Grinch Stole Christmas, The Polar Express - but if you're looking for a few fresh Christmas Stories to update your holiday library, here are 10 Christmas Stories via @tipsaholic #christmas #kids #story #stories

10 Charming Christmas Tales for kids

 

1. Olive, The Other Reindeer by Vivian Walsh – Olive always thought she was a dog, until she realizes the Christmas song is talking about her, “Olive, the other reindeer!”  So she hops on the Polar Express and heads to the North Pole.  Can she offer anything useful to the regular reindeer team?  It’s a hilarious read with fun, graphic illustrations that will make your Christmas merry.

 

2. Christmas Alphabet Deluxe Anniversary Edition by Robert Clarke Sabuda – This beautiful pop-up version of Sabuda’s Christmas book celebrates the sights and symbols of Christmas.  Kids can learn about the alphabet and Christmas, as well as artistic elements of form, color, space and composition with the elegant and imaginative paper pop-ups.

 

3. When Jesus Was Born in Bethlehem by Joseph Brickey – This is a beautiful way to share the story of the first Christmas with your kids.  Gorgeous paintings tell the story of Christ’s birth in a moving way.

 

4. The Spirit of Christmas by Nancy Tillman – A beautifully illustrated picture book that will help your child understand the spirit of Christmas.  Sleds, jingle bells, Christmas trees, candy canes and presents are all fun parts of the holiday, but the true magic of the season comes when you spend Christmas with those you love.

 

5. Snowmen at Christmas by Caralyn Buehner – The snowmen from Buehner’s “Snowmen at Night” are back to share how they celebrate Christmas!  The fun, rhyming text and silly snowmen pictures make this an entertaining read for kids.

 

6. Mr. Willowby’s Christmas Tree by Robert Barry – Mr. Willowby excitedly sets up his Christmas tree which was sent by special delivery!  But he didn’t realize it would be much too tall… He trims the top, which ends up as a Christmas tree for his maid, but it’s too tall for her.  When she trims the top, it ends up as a Christmas tree for the gardner.  And on it goes… each person’s trimmings ending up as a tree for someone else.

 

7. Dream Snow by Eric Carle – It’s Christmas Eve and the Farmer settles in for the night wondering how Christmas will come with no snow.  In his dream, he imagines a snowstorm covering him and his animals, but when he wakes up he discovers the dream has come true!  Then he remembers he has a wonderful Christmas surprise in store.  Told in classic Eric Carle style, the lively collage-like illustrations and a simple, endearing story will make this book a favorite.

 

8. A Wish To Be a Christmas Tree by Colleen Monroe – A poor, overgrown pine is passed by Christmas after Christmas.  What can his woodland friends do to help?  Follow the enchanting text and delightful illustrations to see if this tree’s wish will come true.

 

9. Follow The Star by Andy Mansfield- This pop-up book features intricate, graphic paper pop-ups and cut-outs.  The beautiful spreads are accompanied by a delightful story about the Christmas star. Follow the Christmas star on magical journey, including its first night in the sky above Bethlehem, lighting up a giant Christmas tree and shining high above Santa’s flying sleigh; this book ties all the magic of the season together.

 

10. Drummer Boy by Loren Long – The classic Christmas song, “The Little Drummer Boy” is brought to life through amazing illustrations and charming text.  Kids will get a taste of true magic as they follow the Drummer Boy in the story on an accidental adventure after he is knocked into the trash.

Featured Image via Amazon.

Kimberly Mueller is the “me” over at bugaboo, mini, mr & me, a blog that highlights her creative endeavors. She especially likes to share kid crafts, sewing attempts, recipes, upcycled projects, photography and free printable gift tags/cards. When she’s not enjoying being married to her best friend, chasing after the natives (AKA her three kids) and attempting to keep the house in one piece, you can find her with a glue gun in one hand and spray paint in the other. Aside from DIY pursuits, she also enjoys writing, reading, music, singing (mostly in the shower) and the color yellow. Kimberly recently published a craft book entitled Modern Mod Podge. You can also find her on FacebookPinterest,Bloglovin’ and Instagram. Email her at: bugabooblog(at)yahoo.com

Here is more inspiration:

gift boxes         Elf on the shelf        Christmas Wreath

Adult Gift Ideas                     Elf on the Shelf Ideas           DIY Christmas Wreaths

polka dot         8 Cranberry Dessert Recipes - Tipsaholic.com        13 Easy Side Dishes for Winter Gatherings - Tipsaholic.com

DIY Stockings                        Cranberry Desserts                Winter Side Dishes

10 Art Education Books 3-6 Year Olds Will Love

Learning with your child can be fun. Teach them in a variety of ways. Teach about art and reading with these 10 Art Education Books 3-6 Year Olds Will Love - Tipsaholic, #art, #education, #kids, #books, #read, #kidsbooks, #artbooks, #preschool

 

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Art is an important and vastly under-appreciated element of education.  Fortunately, there are a myriad of ways you can supplement art education in your home.  Reading books to your child is one valuable tool for learning.  Children will become better readers and writers while having fun with you and learning about art.  There are so many different aspects of art education you could focus on – history, masters, colors, hues, composition, to name just a few – that it’s hard to know what your focus should be.  Here are 10 art education books geared to preschoolers that your 3-6 year olds will love!

Learning with your child can be fun. Teach them in a variety of ways. Teach about art and reading with these 10 Art Education Books 3-6 Year Olds Will Love - Tipsaholic, #art, #education, #kids, #books, #read, #kidsbooks, #artbooks, #preschool

1. Art by Patrick McDonnell –

This cute picture book tells the story of Art and his art.  Art is a budding young artist – like so many children.  Follow along and watch as Art creates His fun masterpieces all over the pages of the book.  With rhyming verse and messy, colorful illustrations, this is sure to be a hit with young kids.

 

2. Mini Masters Board Book Series by Julie Merberg and Suzanne Bober –

(Dancing with Degas, A Picnic with Monet, A Magical Day with MatisseIn the Garden with Van Gogh)

These books combine rhyming text, short and simple phrasing and beautiful works from master artists.  Young kids will learn about Degas, Monet, Matisse and Van Gogh in a fun, engaging and positive way.  The artwork is vivid and beautiful and sure to delight even older readers.

 

3. The Dot by Peter H. Reynolds –

“Just make a mark and see where it takes you.” The art teacher says, but Vashti is not convinced.  She is not an artist and instead, she jabs angrily at the paper leaving an unremarkable dot.  That dot, however, leads her on a completely unforeseen adventure through self-discovery and creativity.  Children can learn right along with her as they recognize the value of each person’s unique, creative spirit.

 

4. Perfect Square by Michael Hall –

One perfect square.  But oh!  What a square CAN be!  This adventurous story shows kids how a simple square of construction paper can transform into unlimited possibilities.  Kids will be excited not only for the next page and the coming surprised, but will love applying this in their own creative lives.

 

5. Press Here by Herve Tullet –

This is no mere book about dots and colors, oh no!  Press the dot and the book comes to life, bringing with it a magical, tactile adventure!  Young kids will love following the instructions in this interactive book.  They’ll press, shake, blow, tilt and jab their way through the pages and find delight in the shapes and vibrant colors.

 

6. Beautiful Oops by Barney Saltzberg –

With endearing drawings, vibrant colors and beautiful text, this book gives kids a lovely life lesson.  Mistakes are ok.  In fact, mistakes are great!  They can help you learn and grow, lead to discoveries, and cultivate creativity.  A spill on your masterpiece doesn’t have to ruin it.  Look for a way to turn mistakes into art – when you’re drawing or in life.

 

7. Seen Art? by Jon Scieszka –

This hilarious romp through New York City’s Museum of Modern Art will have your kids begging for more!  When the main character loses track of his friend, Art, he is directed to MoMA instead.  He continues through the museum, looking for his friend, and in the process learns much about famous artists – Matisse, Van Gogh, Picasso and others.  Your kids can learn right alongside him with these playful illustrations and clever, comical text.

 

8. Touch the Art: Count Monet’s Lilies by Julie Appel and Amy Guglielmo –

This is a wonderful introduction to impressionism for very young budding artists with paintings by Monet, Renoir, Cézanne, and Degas to name a few.  This book is a wonderful take on the average “touch and feel” genre and is a tactile experience for young kids who will love feeling bumpy bark on trees, patting fancy hats and counting fruit.  They’ll increase fine motor skills and learn about famous artists at the same time!  (See the other “Touch the Art” books in the series as well)

 

9. The Most Magnificent Thing by Ashley Spires –

In this creative tale with vibrant, quirky pictures, the unnamed heroine sets out to create the most magnificent thing.  She has a plan and knows just what she needs to do.  After trying and failing time after time, she decides to give up.  What will happen to her creative vision?  Is it lost for good?  Kids will learn just as much vocabulary from the witty text with fun and functional action words and trilogies of verbs as they will about perseverance, negative emotions and creation.

 

10. The Museum by Susan Verde –

This whimsical look at art is told through charming illustrations and simple, lighthearted text.  Follow the main character on an adventure through an art museum, where each piece speaks to her in a different way.  This playful tale captures the emotion and experience of art, and children will better understand how artwork communicates to others and how they can feel energized to create and express themselves.

Kimberly Mueller is the “me” over at bugaboo, mini, mr & me, a blog that highlights her creative endeavors. She especially likes to share kid crafts, sewing attempts, recipes, upcycled projects, photography and free printable gift tags/cards. When she’s not enjoying being married to her best friend, chasing after the natives (AKA her three kids) and attempting to keep the house in one piece, you can find her with a glue gun in one hand and spray paint in the other. Aside from DIY pursuits, she also enjoys writing, reading, music, singing (mostly in the shower) and the color yellow. Kimberly recently published a craft book entitled Modern Mod Podge. You can also find her on FacebookPinterest,Bloglovin’ and Instagram. Email her at: bugabooblog(at)yahoo.com

For more educational ideas try these:

10 Hands-On Math Activities - Tipsaholic.com               tipsaholic-10-math-books-3-6-year-olds-will-love-pinterest-pic              hands on science

Math for 3-6 Year Olds              Math Books 3-6 Year Olds        Science for 3-6 Year Olds

10 Math Books 9-11 Year Olds Will Love

math books your 9-11 year old will love

Math isn’t all worksheets and flashcards.  It can be a lot of fun, too!  Reading is a great way to learn together and reinforce concepts.  The following 10 books are a perfect place to start when you’re looking for math books for your 9-11 year old.

10 math books 9-11 years old will love

1. The Grapes of Math by Greg Tang

A book of riddles with tried and true, creative methods for solving math problems by the author.  The vibrant illustrations and fun games will be a hit with kids.  Using effective and simple methods to solve the riddles will give your child confidence.

2. A Very Improbable Story by Edward Einhorn

One morning, Ethan awakes to find an unusual cat – Odds, stuck on his head.  To get rid of the cat, Ethan must win a game of probability, such as pick out two matching socks from his drawer or pull a dime from his coin collection, or some other equally improbable feat.  If he can’t beat the odds, Odds won’t budge, and there’s a 100% chance that Ethan will miss his soccer game!  With this fun plot, entertaining characters and engaging illustrations, this is book is a surefire hit with kids.  It teaches a difficult to grasp concept in a fun way.

3. Math for all Seasons by Greg Tang

More fun riddles and problems to solve in mind-stretching ways.  Great for building Math vocabulary, creativity, and confidence.

4. Math Curse by Jon Scieszka

Do you ever have one of those days where everything is a problem??  This book follows a girl throughout a day filled with “problems” – MATH problems!  A fun look at everyday math.  Charming illustrations with a fun and engaging plot line will have kids begging you to read it.

5. Full House: An Invitation to Fractions by Dayle Ann Dods

Whimsical illustrations and a cast of hilarious characters flow through this book of rhyming text.  Miss Bloom runs the Strawberry Inn and loves to have visitors.  One night, she finds herself with a full house.  Sensing something is amiss, she discovers her guests hungry for a midnight snack.  Will there be enough cake for everyone?  A very inviting read for kids.

6. Mummy Math: An Adventure in Geometry by Cindy Neuschwander

The Zills family is summoned to Egypt to aid in finding the burial chamber of an ancient pharaoh.  When the kids get trapped in a hidden tomb, they must use the geometric hieroglyphics and their knowledge of math to find the burial chamber and escape the tomb.  Will they make it out?  Do they know their stuff?  With a riddle, a mystery and plenty of opportunity for flexing math muscles, kids are sure to find this adventure fun, time and time again.

7. A Remainder of One by Elinor J. Pinczes

When a queen demands that her bugs march in even lines, it’s up to Private Joe to divide and conquer.  Can he split the ants into lines evenly, so he will not be left out?  How many lines will it take?  Fun little drawings will invite young readers in, while the story line engages and teaches a valuable lesson in division.

8. How Big is a Foot? by Rolf Myller

The king wants to give the queen something special for her birthday — not easy when the queen has EVERYTHING.  Except…a bed.  You see, beds hadn’t yet been invented.  The king must figure out “how big is a bed?” – but no one knows!  A cute, fun story with quirky illustrations that will have kids guessing and estimating in measurements.

9. Multiplying Menace: The Revenge of Rumpelstiltskin by Pam Calvert

Follow Peter as he tries to stop Rumpelstiltskin and his multiplying stick.  Can he unlock the secret and rescue the kingdom from Rumpelstiltskin and his mischief?  A fun look at multiplication using familiar characters that kids are sure to love.

10. The Best of Times by Greg Tang

A fun take on the times table.  The author teaches innovative ways to derive solutions to multiplication problems without rote memorization.  The rhyming patterns are easy to remember and the cute illustrations are delightful.

(all photos and links via Amazon)

 

Kimberly Mueller is the “me” over at bugaboo, mini, mr & me, a blog that highlights her creative endeavors. She especially likes to share kid crafts, sewing attempts, recipes, upcycled projects, photography and free printable gift tags/cards. When she’s not enjoying being married to her best friend, chasing after the natives (AKA her three kids) and attempting to keep the house in one piece, you can find her with a glue gun in one hand and spray paint in the other. Aside from DIY pursuits, she also enjoys writing, reading, music, singing (mostly in the shower) and the color yellow. Kimberly recently published a craft book entitled Modern Mod Podge. You can also find her on FacebookPinterest, Bloglovin’ and Instagram. Email her at: bugabooblog(at)yahoo.com

Loving Literacy: 6 Tips for Supplementing Your Child’s Literacy Education (ages 6-9)

6 Tips for supplementing your child's literacy education (ages 6-9) ~ Tipsaholic.com #education #literacy #kids

 

literacy6-9years

Your child can learn to love literacy with a little help from you!  No matter what stage your child is at in their education, using techniques to supplement their schooling while at home is a key component in their educational success.  By building on their language and literacy education, you are equipping your children with the skills they will need not only for their education, but also in social situations, higher educational opportunities, future workplace and community involvement.  Literacy education is essential for personal growth and success, and the building blocks you lay while they’re in elementary school are crucial.  Ages 6-9 are critical when setting solid habits and foundations.  Here are 6 tips for supplementing your child’s literacy education at home.

 

1. Be aware of critical milestones.

Not only can a missed milestone or two be a sign of issues you don’t want to ignore, but they’re also a great guide for you as a parent.  It’s impossible to understand how to approach education with your child when you have no idea of age and developmental norms.  Read up, study, do some research.  You’ll feel more comfortable, and it’ll take any unnecessary pressure off of you and your child.  For instance, by 6-9 your child generally has increased attention and comprehension, is more comfortable with longer texts, becomes more fluent in common words and sounds, mimics reading habits, has greater phonemic awareness, an expanded vocabulary, and has developed visual literacy skills.  They can also usually begin to monitor themselves while reading.

2. Give them time. 

While reading with your child, make sure to allow them to set the pace.  Give them the time they need to work through words on their own.  If they are struggling, offer clues, but do not read for them.  Clues can be key phrases such as: “What’s the first sound?” “Go through each sound in order.” “What happens when you put [insert letters here] together?” “Look at the words around this one.”  Help them put the unfamiliar words in context by guiding them to skip the word and fill it in by looking at other words or pictures.  Don’t hurry them through a book or tell them to move faster.  Comprehension is just as important as making the sounds, and comprehension takes time.

3. Heap on the praise.

At every step along the way, make sure you are congratulating your child for their hard work.  Correctly identifying sounds that letters make together, figuring out an unfamiliar word, successfully reading a phrase, sentence or book are all reasons to praise your child.  You don’t need to go overboard, but a simple, “I knew you could do it!  Great job!”  Or “You worked so hard on that, that was awesome!” is enough to make your 6-9 year old continue on.  It’s a simple and easy thing to do that will build the kind of confidence in your child that they need.

4. Be consistent.

Make literacy practice a daily thing.  Read to your child, have your child read favorite books to you, point out signs while you drive and have your child read them, play rhyming games by picking a word and taking turns coming up with rhymes, sing songs with rhyming words, talk about alliteration/symbolism/metaphors/synonyms/antonyms/opposites/etc while you’re together on a bike ride, during dinner come up with word families together, on a walk have your child point out everything they see that starts with a certain letter, make games out of the parts of speech that you can play while waiting in lines, etc.  All of these things reinforce learning, make it a common and expected activity, turn it into games and fun and require nothing special from you at all except for your own brain.

5. Use variety.

Don’t stick to only one game or toy to reinforce concepts.  Children can grow bored easily.  If you switch up the games, flash cards, activities, songs and discussions and tweak them to pertain to your child’s specific interests, they’ll retain more information and continue to find the fun in literacy.

6. Model good habits.

Especially at this age, children are learning by mimicking.  That means that what you do is often much more important than what you say.  So make sure your child sees you reading.  Make sure they know you enjoy reading to them.  Keep a public, shared bookcase easily accessible to all members of the family.  Make it something they see, expect and understand so you can pass your good habits on by example.

 

Looking for more great ideas to encourage your child’s literacy skills? Try this list of 10 Language and Literacy Books 6-9 Year Olds Will Love!

 

Kimberly Mueller is the “me” over at bugaboo, mini, mr & me, a blog that highlights her creative endeavors. She especially likes to share kid crafts, sewing attempts, recipes, upcycled projects, photography and free printable gift tags/cards. When she’s not enjoying being married to her best friend, chasing after the natives (AKA her three kids) and attempting to keep the house in one piece, you can find her with a glue gun in one hand and spray paint in the other. Aside from DIY pursuits, she also enjoys writing, reading, music, singing (mostly in the shower) and the color yellow. Kimberly recently published a craft book entitled Modern Mod Podge. You can also find her on FacebookPinterest,Bloglovin’ and Instagram. Email her at: bugabooblog(at)yahoo.com

10 Language and Literacy Books 6-9 Year Olds Will Love

literacy books 6-9

 

What better way to help your children learn about language and supplement their literacy education than by reading to them?  Kids love bold, colorful picture books which makes them the perfect educational tool.  They’re easily accessible, engaging, and can help create life-long readers.  There are many entertaining and clever books that introduce several beginning building blocks of language, including alphabet identification, parts of speech, rhyming and poetry, storytelling and imagination, idioms and more!  Here is our list of top 10 language and literacy books 6-9 year olds will love.

tipsaholic title divider - 10 literacy books

1. Ox, House, Stick: The History of Our Alphabet by Don Robb

Do you know how our current alphabet was developed?  This picture book traces the origins of the Roman Alphabet from the proto-Sinaitic peoples, through the Phoenicians, Greeks and Romans.  It also includes information about punctuation, writing materials, technology of printing and more!  This non-fiction book is engaging, with its clear prose and bold illustrations using collage.

2. Aunt Isabel Tells a Good One by Kate Duke

In this endearing tale, a little mouse named Penelope and her Aunt Isabel make up an exciting bedtime story all about Prince Augustine and Lady Penelope.  An adorably attractive story for children, this book will emphasize the importance of imagination and introduce kids to storytelling.

3. My Dog Is As Smelly As Dirty Socks: And Other Funny Family Portraits by Hanoch Piven

This book is one creative alternative to your average family portrait!  Piven uses everyday objects which represent personality traits to create fun portraits of each member in one girl’s family.  The dog, for instance, is created from socks, a clothespin, garlic bulbs, a can of tuna… and each object tells a fun, metaphorical story.  For instance, dad is “as jumpy as a spring, as playful as a top, as fun as a party favor…”  combine each object and the metaphors and you get one ingenious portrait!  Introduce your kids to metaphors through art and text with this clever, quirky story.

4. Poem-Mobiles: Crazy Car Poems by  J. Patrick Lewis and Douglas Florian

This amazing picture book about cars is told in poem-form.  These cars aren’t your average automobiles though, they’re crazy, kooky, inventive little machines; like the “Sloppy-Floppy-Nonstop-Jalopy.”  The quirky poetry and fun-filled illustrations will delight young readers while introducing them to rhyming schemes and poetic elements.

5. The Dangerous Alphabet by Neil Gaiman

This entertaining alphabet book is like no other!  Each letter is part of a grand, adventurous tale all about two kids, their pet gazelle, and a treasure map who sneak out of their house past their father and embark on a fantastical journey.  There are monsters, pirates, and all manner of alphabetical dangers.  Will the children make it out alive?

6. A Zeal of Zebras: An Alphabet of Collective Nouns by Woop Studios

Is it a gaggle of geese or a galaxy?  A galaxy of starfish or a pod?  In this book, readers discover the world of collective nouns while learning the alphabet.  The colorful graphics and fun language is accessible to kids.  But parents will love the clever word play and design-styled, gorgeous pictures.  It can be a centerpiece of your coffee table AND your playroom!

7. A Mink, a Fink, a Skating Rink: What is a Noun?  (and the entire Words Are Categorical series) by Brian P. Cleary

This fun picture book explores elements of English grammar in a very accessible and engaging way.  The playful and clever rhymes throughout the series will help children understand and remember different parts of language.  In What is a Noun? kids are introduced to one of the main building blocks of literacy.  With quirky, colorful pictures and fun text, this book (and the rest of the series) is a fun way to learn.

8.  Many Luscious Lollipops by Ruth Heller

Kids will be drawn into this boldly illustrated book all about adjectives and how to use them.  The brilliant, colorful photos and illustrations grab attention and help give punch to the more technical elements of this book.  The descriptions are a perfect introduction for young kids that will help them understand and explore language.

9. More Parts by Tedd Arnold

This laugh out loud sequel to the book Parts combines catchy, rhyming text with silly, intriguing illustrations to explore the world of idioms.  Introduce an abstract literary element to your kids through this clever, funny book about how to survive broken hearts, jumping out of your skin, and giving someone a helping hand.  Make sure you and your kids don’t come unglued!

10. Firefly July and Other Very Short Poems by Paul B. Janeczko

This adorable picture book with whimsical illustrations introduces young readers to the world of poetry in a cute, embraceable way.  The very short poems prove that it only takes a few well-selected words to paint a very vivid picture.  While it helps kids understand rhyming, cadence, and other poetry ideas, and it also captures their interest through colorful pictures.

 

Kimberly Mueller is the “me” over at bugaboo, mini, mr & me, a blog that highlights her creative endeavors. She especially likes to share kid crafts, sewing attempts, recipes, upcycled projects, photography and free printable gift tags/cards. When she’s not enjoying being married to her best friend, chasing after the natives (AKA her three kids) and attempting to keep the house in one piece, you can find her with a glue gun in one hand and spray paint in the other. Aside from DIY pursuits, she also enjoys writing, reading, music, singing (mostly in the shower) and the color yellow. Kimberly recently published a craft book entitled Modern Mod Podge. You can also find her on FacebookPinterest,Bloglovin’ and Instagram. Email her at: bugabooblog(at)yahoo.com

10 Math Books 6-9 Year Olds Will Love!

10 Math Books 6-9 Year Olds Will Love |Tipsaholic.com #education #math #books #reading #kids

tipsaholic-10-math-books-6-9-year-olds-will-love-title
Math can seem a very daunting endeavor when you’re beginning to learn complex concepts.  Reading picture books is a great way to make math more accessible to our children.  If you want to show your 6-9 year old just how fun math can be, take a look at these great math books!

1. The Penny Pot by Stuart J Murphy

This book was written by a mathematician who travels the US talking to kids about everyday math.  He shows kids how they use math all the time, whether sorting socks or spending their allowance.  The Penny Box is a humorous story that illustrates the fun in math – and hopefully helps kids recognize math as accessible and fun.

2. How Many Jelly Beans? by Andrea Menotti

How many jelly beans are enough? Aiden and Emma can’t decide. Is 10 enough? Or 1,000? That’s a lot of jelly beans. But eaten over a whole year, it’s only two or three a day. This giant picture book offers kids a fun and easy way to understand large numbers. Starting with 10, each page shows more and more colorful candies, leading up to a giant fold-out surprise—ONE MILLION JELLY BEANS!  Kids will love the fun, bright pictures, and learn that big scary numbers can be easily accessible.

3. Inch by Inch by Leo Lionni

In this charming book kids will meet a lovable inchworm who is very proud of his ability to measure absolutely anything.  A great introduction to measurements and mathematical terms, kids will love the characters and the winsome, watercolor-esque illustrations.

4. Pete the Cat and His Four Groovy Buttons by James Dean and Eric Litwin

Pete loves his groovy buttons!  But when one falls off, does he cry?  No!  He just keeps singing his song.  When you count down with Pete the Cat in this fun book that teaches math concepts and subtraction, you’ll feel pretty groovy too!

5. 123 Versus ABC by Mike Boldt

This book explores the age old question, which is more important?  Letters or numbers?  While numbers and letters compete to be the stars of the book, funny props and animals pop in for cameos.  The whimsical illustrations and fresh and funny text introduce readers to letters and numbers in a refreshing way and by the end of the book, the answer to the BIG question is perfectly clear.

6. The Doorbell Rang by Pat Hutchins

When Ma makes a dozen delicious cookies, she knows it will be plenty for her two children.  But then, the doorbell rang!  And it keeps on ringing!  In this cute and unpredictable tale, kids will love to count along.

7. How Much Is A Million? by David M. Schwartz

What an abstract concept a million is!  This book takes a look at the concept that has kids wondering and guessing.  Just how much IS a million?  Or a billion?  Or a trillion??  With fantastical images in classic style, this book is sure to engage young readers.

8. Bedtime Math by Laura Overdeck

Bedtime Math has a mission: to make math a fun part of kids’ everyday lives!  Math in this book looks nothing like school, with a kid-friendly and kid-APPEALING take on math problems.  Families are sure to love the riddles, with whimsical illustrations and mischief-making math problems.  There are three different levels in one book, so it’s sure to have something for everyone in the family!

9. The Boy Who Loved Math: The Improbable Life of Paul Erdos by Deborah Heiligman

This book of reader-friendly, lyrical text and rich illustrations explores the life of Paul Erdos, a mathematician who was also a great man.  While introducing readers to math concepts the book also follows Paul from his early start at age-related calculations as a young boy, through the many adventures he has while traveling the world to meet mathematicians and collaborate on publications.  Kids will see what made math for one little boy who loved math!

10. Tally O’Malley by Stuart J. Murphy

The O’Malley’s are off to the beach – a long, hot, LOOOOONG drive!  How will the kids pass the time?  By counting up everything they see by categories – be it green shirts or gray cars.  Whoever has the most marks at the end of the round wins the game.  Eric wins first.  Then Bridget.  It seems like Nell will never win… but she has a surprise in store for her brother and sister!  This book not only introduces math concepts, but shows that math can be a fun game!

 

Kimberly Mueller is the “me” over at bugaboo, mini, mr & me, a blog that highlights her creative endeavors. She especially likes to share kid crafts, sewing attempts, recipes, upcycled projects, photography and free printable gift tags/cards. When she’s not enjoying being married to her best friend, chasing after the natives (AKA her three kids) and attempting to keep the house in one piece, you can find her with a glue gun in one hand and spray paint in the other. Aside from DIY pursuits, she also enjoys writing, reading, music, singing (mostly in the shower) and the color yellow. Kimberly recently published a craft book entitled Modern Mod Podge. You can also find her on FacebookPinterest,Bloglovin’ and Instagram. Email her at: bugabooblog(at)yahoo.com

 

Featured image courtesy of Mike Boldt.

10 Math Books 3-6 Year Olds Will Love

10 Math Books 3-6 Year Olds Will Love | Tipsaholic.com #learning #kids #math #books #reading

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If you’re in the market for different techniques to supplement your child’s school-taught math education at home, don’t overlook something you’re probably already doing!  Reading to your child encourages all kinds of skills – from letter and sound recognition to imagination to critical thinking and problem solving skills.  With the right kind of picture books, your 3-6 year olds will love learning about math concepts too! Check out these fun and entertaining math books.

 

1. Zero by Kathryn Otoshi

Every other number is worth something, but when Zero looks at herself, all she sees is a big hole in her center.  If she could look like the other numbers, she’d count too.  This book is not only a lesson in personal worth, but a fun way to learn about numbers and counting.

2. One by Kathryn Otoshi

Blue is a quiet color who, for some reason, Red is always picking on.  Yellow, Orange, Green, and Purple don’t like what they see, but what can they do about it?  This combines learning about primary and secondary colors, as well as counting.  But it also teaches an important lesson about standing together and making a difference – even if you are only one.

 

3. My Very First Book of Numbers by Eric Carle

Do you know how many apples there are?  How many cherries?  This is a puzzle book in which the reader identifies the numeral and number of black boxes on the top half of the page and then matches this to the correct number of fruits shown on the bottom half of the page.  Colorful, vibrant, graphic and fun, this book makes number recognition, counting and matching a game!

 

4. I Spy Numbers by Jean Marzollo

This book uses simple picture clues and rhyming riddles to guide young children through learning about numbers, counting and simple math concepts.  It’s specifically geared to preschoolers and kindergarteners who will love all 12 of the bright, colorful, interesting spreads.

 

5. Rainbow Fish Counting by Marcus Pfister

Young children learn numbers 1-10 with dazzling illustrations of undersea creatures and plants, including the well-loved Rainbow Fish himself!  Bold numerals shown along with the appropriate sea creatures help with number recognition while appealing visually to a young audience.

 

6. Ten Apples Up On Top! by Theo LeSieg

This classic story introduces kids to three lovable characters who can perform all kinds of giggle-inducing tricks!  The Lion, dog and tiger discover that they can do a lot of fun things – from drinking milk to jumping rope and roller skating – all while balancing apples on their heads.  How many can they keep up?  Will they let them fall?  Kids love to count along.

 

7. How Do Dinosaurs Count to Ten? by Jane Yolen and Mark Teague

Young readers love these familiar dino characters and their crazy antics!  They’re at it again, this time teaching kids to count from 1 to 10.  The pages are full of rhyming text and silly illustrations that are sure to capture attention.  It makes learning numbers and counting BIG fun!

 

8. Gobble, Gobble Crash! by Julie Stiegemeyer

It all starts with four naughty, noisy turkeys and soon the whole barnyard is awake!  Did they really intend to wake the farmer in the middle of the night as well??  Kids will find the illustrations hilarious as they count up to 10 and all the way back down in fun rhyming text.

 

9. The Greedy Triangle by Marilyn Burns

Bored with his current situation, a triangle visits a local shapeshifter to have some alterations made.  Adding another angle makes him a quadrilateral!  But that’s just not enough for this greedy shape.  Children will love finding out what happens as the triangle adds angle after angle until he is completely transformed!  What a fun introduction to shapes and basic math concepts!

 

10. Shape by Shape by Suse MacDonald

Each page of this bright, vivid book reveals another shape clue about a creature from long ago.  The die-cut pages are full of attention-grabbing colors and shapes that come together in a large, fold-out page for the grand reveal.  Circles become eyes, triangles become scales… will your young reader deduce what awaits on the final page?

 

Also check out this list of 10 Language and Literacy Books 3-6 Year Olds Will Love.

 

Kimberly Mueller is the “me” over at bugaboo, mini, mr & me, a blog that highlights her creative endeavors. She especially likes to share kid crafts, sewing attempts, recipes, upcycled projects, photography and free printable gift tags/cards. When she’s not enjoying being married to her best friend, chasing after the natives (AKA her three kids) and attempting to keep the house in one piece, you can find her with a glue gun in one hand and spray paint in the other. Aside from DIY pursuits, she also enjoys writing, reading, music, singing (mostly in the shower) and the color yellow. Kimberly recently published a craft book entitled Modern Mod Podge. You can also find her on FacebookPinterest,Bloglovin’ and Instagram. Email her at: bugabooblog(at)yahoo.com

 

10 Language and Literacy Books 3-6 Year Olds Will Love

10 Language and Literacy Books 3-6 Year Olds Will Love | Tipsaholic.com #kids #reading #books #literacy

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Supplementing your child’s literacy education doesn’t have to be boring – in fact it can be a lot of fun!  The very best way to encourage literacy education in your preschooler?  Reading to them, of course!  Introducing books to your children at a young age can lead to a life-long love of reading.  You can strengthen letter recognition, practice starting and ending sounds, teach rhyming and speak proper grammar out loud, to name just a few skills.  Here are 10 language and literacy books 3-6 year olds will love.

 

1. Alpha Oops by Alethea Kontis

Z is sick and tired of being last all the time.  The rest of the alphabet agree to go backwards, but it isn’t long before they all get ideas of their own!  It’s every letter for himself in this funny, mixed up romp through the alphabet.  It’s filled with humorous drawings and whimsical details that round out the story of chaos and mayhem!

 

2. The Alphabet Tree by Leo Lionni

A fierce wind is threatening the letters of the alphabet tree.  What can they do to stand against it?  In this darling story the letters learn to band together into words, then sentences to offer a message to the wind.  Will it help?  It’s not only a book about the alphabet and sentences, it also teaches a valuable lesson about the importance of the written word.

 

3. Storybook Treasury of Dick and Jane and Friends by William S. Gray

A compilation of classic and well-loved first-reader storybooks that follow Dick and Jane, along with some new tales.  Parents will love the nostalgia and kids will love the cute and classic tales.

 

4. Not Another Boring ABC Book by Sharon Cohen

A isn’t just for apple anymore!  In this adorable story, kids can join along with Nina, a spunky princess as she has adventures that start with the letters of the alphabet!  Kids have an opportunity to learn the alphabet, along with lessons about alliteration, the power of words, and more.

 

5. My First BOB Books by Lynn Maslen Kertell

This set of tiny first readers is a scholastic award-winning reading program that teaches pre-reading skills and basic literacy concepts.  Through a cute cast of characters and humorous plots, these books lay an important foundation for reading that will appeal to young kids.

 

6. The Turn-Around, Upside-Down Alphabet Book by Lisa Campbell Ernst

At every turn, these letters are full of surprises!  Can your kids discover anything else hidden in the alphabet?  These graphic, colorful pictures are full of fun for kids!

 

7. LMNOPeas by Keith Baker

This cute little alphabet book is filled with jaunty, busy little peas – from acrobats to zoologists!  Follow the peas on their daily pursuits through rhyming text and fun pictures.  Your kids will fall in love!

 

8. Caramel Tree Readers Starter Level: Alphabet Storybooks 1-5 by James Rogers and Sally Crust

Each of these storybooks feature easy to follow and read story lines with cute illustrations.  Each letter has an accompanying song to help retain learning.

 

9. My Very First Book of Words by Eric Carle

Kids will learn to read simple words while matching pictures with words.  These clever matching puzzles are a hit with kids, and Eric Carle’s beloved illustrations are delightful.

 

10. Alphabet Adventure by Audrey Wood

The lower case letters have been working hard and are finally ready for school.  On the way there, i loses her dot and the letters must race to find a substitute.  Small s offers her a star, h a heart, but will they find a suitable replacement?  The cute plot along with engaging illustrations will delight little readers.

 

Also check out this list of 10 Math Books 3-6 Year Olds Will Love.

 

Kimberly Mueller is the “me” over at bugaboo, mini, mr & me, a blog that highlights her creative endeavors. She especially likes to share kid crafts, sewing attempts, recipes, upcycled projects, photography and free printable gift tags/cards. When she’s not enjoying being married to her best friend, chasing after the natives (AKA her three kids) and attempting to keep the house in one piece, you can find her with a glue gun in one hand and spray paint in the other. Aside from DIY pursuits, she also enjoys writing, reading, music, singing (mostly in the shower) and the color yellow. Kimberly recently published a craft book entitled Modern Mod Podge. You can also find her on FacebookPinterest,Bloglovin’ and Instagram. Email her at: bugabooblog(at)yahoo.com

10 Awesome Kids’ Books (you may not know about)

Is your children’s library a bit stale?  While we all have favorite kids’ books, sometimes reading the same well-loved tale over and over can be kind of… boring.  It’s great to stock up on the classics – stories you read as a child, gems from favorite authors, characters your kids love – maybe you need a little inspiration.  This top ten list of awesome kids books may give you a few new ideas!

10 Awesome Kids Books (you might not know about) via Tipsaholic

10 Awesome Kids Books to Add to Your Shelf

Ducks Don’t Wear Socks by John Nedwidek 

Nedwidek tells the story of Emily – a VERY serious girl who likes doing VERY serious things like playing the cello.  But one day, she runs into Duck – who is definitely NOT serious.  Duck likes to plant crops in the park, ride a stick horse around town, and above all: wear things a duck is NOT supposed to wear.  Through a series of humorous run-ins, Duck teaches Emily (and the reader!) the importance of laughter and fun.

 

Roar of a Snore by Marsha Diane Arnold 

Jack Huffle’s peaceful sleep is disturbed by one big roar of a snore!  At first, he blames his faithful dog, but upon discovering it isn’t him the two set off on a search for the culprit.  They wake Mama Gwyn, Papa Ben, Baby Sue and more, to no avail.  Each family member joins the search in turn and they follow their ears to make a most surprising discovery!  Kids will be delighted with the rhymes and cadence, and will particularly love roaring along with the snorer!

I Love You Through and Through by Bernadette Rosetti Shustak 

This book of charming illustrations features a silly toddler and his stuffed bear with fun rhyming text.  It not only teaches children about emotions, but also portrays the great love parents have for their little ones.

 

My Many Colored Days by Dr. Seuss

This is a very atypical Dr. Seuss book, but a great read, nonetheless.  In this book, Seuss describes emotions and moods using colors, animals and actions.  His rhyming text is accompanied by bright, vivid paintings which create a sensational experience for the reader.  Kids will easily relate to the book which uses such imagery as a bright red horse kicking his heels, a very sad purple dinosaur, and a cool, quiet calm, green fish – among many others.  This book is a great way to give words and meanings that a child will understand to what can be potentially confusing and abstract ideas.

 

Not a Box by Antoinette Portis 

This cute book features a quirky little rabbit and just one old cardboard box.  Or is it?  Children will learn the importance and fun of imagination as they follow this rabbit in his imaginative play.  From a firetruck to a mountain to a rocket ship, little rabbit shows how imagination transports us to a world with no limitations – where anything is possible.

 

Don’t Let the Pigeon Stay Up Late! by Mo Willems 

Pigeon is not a BIT sleepy.  Nope, not at all!  But we aren’t allowed to let him stay up past his bedtime.  Kids will laugh along with you as Pigeon runs through all of his excuses, wheedling, reasons, and temper tantrums in order to escape bedtime.  Will he succeed?

 

Ish by Peter Reynolds 

Reynolds paints a vivid picture of Ramon, a carefree spirit who loves drawing.  Nothing makes Ramon more happy that drawing, that is until his brother offers him a single thoughtless remark.  With that one careless comment, Ramon’s joyful sketching turns into an aggravated struggle.  Can he ever enjoy drawing again?  Luckily for Ramon, his little sister is there to open his eyes to thinking “ish-ly” and he discovers that getting everything perfect is not all it’s cut out to be.  Kids and adults alike will love this story of encouraging creativity and innovative thinking.

 

An Awesome Book by Dallas Clayton 

With this book, kids learn to dream big and reach higher than they think they can.  Clayton shares whimsical scenarios replete with bright, vivid, quirky illustrations and fun, thoughtful rhymes.  The moral?  Hold on to the imagination of your youth and don’t be afraid to dream big!

 

Spoon by Amy Krouse Rosenthal 

This is the cute tale of Spoon, a happy utensil.  Though he’s always been fairly satisfied with life, lately he has started to feel as if being a spoon is not all it’s cracked up to be.  Fork, Knife and Chopsticks seem to have it better than him.  Perhaps greater things await him… but do they?  Kids will love the unconventional characters and relatable storyline as they learn about celebrating differences and appreciating the things that make us unique.

 

The Great Paper Caper by Oliver Jeffers 

What is happening in the forest?  The animals grow more and more confused as branches and then whole trees go missing.  Confusion turns to alarm as more of the forest disappears and their investigative work turns up empty.  A single eyewitness lead opens their eyes to bear, the culprit who’s been stealing the trees and dragging them to his home to… do what?  The police are called, an interrogation ensues and the animals hold a trial.  But none of them are expecting what happens next.  Kids of all ages will love finding the clues, learning the story of bear, and searching the funny little illustrations all while learning the importance of friendship, conservation and recycling.

 

Kimberly Mueller is the “me” over at bugaboo, mini, mr & me, a blog that highlights her creative endeavors. She especially likes to share kid crafts, sewing attempts, recipes, upcycled projects, photography and free printable gift tags/cards. When she’s not enjoying being married to her best friend, chasing after the natives (AKA her three kids) and attempting to keep the house in one piece, you can find her with a glue gun in one hand and spray paint in the other. Aside from DIY pursuits, she also enjoys writing, reading, music, singing (mostly in the shower) and the color yellow. Kimberly recently published a craft book entitled Modern Mod Podge. You can also find her on FacebookPinterest,Bloglovin’ and Instagram. Email her at: bugabooblog(at)yahoo.com

5 Ideas for Organizing Children’s Books

5 Ideas for Organizing Children's Books | Tipsaholic.com #reading #storage #books #kids

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Children’s books are an important part of childhood (and parenthood), but a collection of board books, picture books, and nursery rhyme books can easily get out of control. Here are some useful ideas for organizing children’s books.

 

1. Edit, edit, and edit.

Before you start to organize your children’s books, focus on editing the books that you have. Do your kids currently read all of the books that they own? Are there some books that they’ve outgrown or books that are too advanced for them to read right now? Donate books that you don’t think your kids will read anymore and store away advanced books in sealed plastic bins to pull out at a later time. If your collection is still so big after some editing, you can rotate out books the same way some parents rotate out toys so that your kids always have something “new” to read. This editing process should be done yearly or bi-yearly.

 

2. Keep the books easily accessible to your kids.

The more accessible your children’s books are, the more likely that your kids will actually read the books and put them away when they’re done. Which spots in your home are more accessible to your kids — their playroom, their rooms, or the living room? Consider your children’s heights when placing the books on a bookshelf or wall ledges. If you have a toddler, put the books facing forward so your young reader can easily see where his/her favorite books are at.

In the same vein, if there are some precious books that you’d rather not get damaged, such as books from your own childhood, put them at a higher height to keep them away from your kids, yet still available when you’re there to supervise or read with them.

 

3. Categorize books in some way.

Maybe one of your kids love ghost stories while another is a fan of fairy tales. You could divide some of the children’s books into smaller plastic bins or cardboard boxes and label them according to theme, reading level, or any other category that will work well with your children’s reading preferences. Another idea for organizing children’s books into categories is to use color stickers on the spine of the books and assign each color to a category.

 

4. Have a separate spot for library books.

The library late fees can quickly build up if you don’t have a system to prevent your library books from mixing into kids’ books. Designate a basket or bag to always hold the library books and simply grab the whole thing when you head to the library.

 

5. Involve your kids in organizing children’s books.

However you choose to organize your children’s books, be sure to include your kids in the decision making process and have them help you set up the system. They’ll be more motivated to keep up with the system and keep everything organized and neat.

If you’re still building your collection of children’s books, here are some great suggestions for ages 1-3 and ages 4-8. When you’re done organizing children’s books, why not create a fun little reading nook for your kids?

 

“I’m Elisa and I live in Austin, Texas with my husband and our two little girls. I used to teach reading and writing, but now I stay at home with my two kiddos and read and write in my spare time. I also love to undertake DIY projects, find new recipes on Pinterest, and dream about someday finally completing our home. Above all, I love to learn about new things and sharing my new-found knowledge with others.” Please check out my blog What the Vita!

Featured image courtesy of {Smith} Peas in a Pod.

7 Valentine’s Day Books to Read With Your Family

7 Valentine's Day Books to Read with Your Family

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What is Valentine’s Day all about? Is it really just about exchanging cards and eating chocolate hearts? Of course not. We all know that it’s really about spending time with the people we love. One way to do that is reading a book together. These seven Valentine’s Day books are funny, sweet, thoughtful, and just plain fun to read.

7 valentines books to read with your family - Tipsaholic.com

1. Where Is Baby’s Valentine?

Perfect for babies and very young toddlers, this lift-the-flap book sends you on a search for the valentine’s day gift that baby made for mom. Grab this opportunity to teach about  the shape of the heart, since you will find it on almost every page. After you read it together, you could go off on a search around your home for a Valentine’s Day gift you’ve made for your kids!

2. Happy Valentine’s Day, Mouse!

If you and your kids love the “If You Give…” book series, you will enjoy this cute board book. Mouse decides to make a Valentine’s Day card for everyone he loves. He thinks about what he loves about them and includes it in his card for them. Written for toddlers, the story is much simpler than the usual “If You Give…” books but it opens itself to a good discussion of what your kids love about the people in their lives.

3. The Day It Rained Hearts

This whimsical story of Cornelia Augusta and the day that it rained hearts will capture the hearts of your young children. Written for 4 to 8-year-olds, the book talks about how Cornelia collected the raining hearts and turned them into special Valentine’s Day gifts for her friends. This is another book that will help your kids think about how to make their Valentine’s Day cards more personal.

4. Roses Are Pink, Your Feet Really Stink

The story of Gilbert, a furry creature with glasses, and the Valentine’s Day cards that he makes for his classmates will both delight and teach your kids. Gilbert is thoughtful and sweet with all of his cards except for the two classmates he doesn’t like because they teased him in the past. What does he write on the cards and what happens as a result? A good message about revenge, forgiveness, and honesty. As a bonus, the watercolor illustrations in the book are so beautiful and fascinating to look at.

5. The Story of Valentine’s Day

Behind every holiday is an interesting origin story and Valentine’s Day is no different. This book is a good introduction of how the holiday came about, complete with colorful illustrations and even a cookie recipe. This book would be great for all ages, especially for those who thoughtfully ask, “Why?”

6. Love? Maybe.

If you have a young teenager that loves to read, this book about a girl whose birthday is Valentine’s Day is a light and fun read about finding love in unexpected places and even when you don’t really believe in love. You could grab two copies and read it along with your daughter and discuss the plot after every chapter.

7. Valentine Treats: Recipes and Crafts for the Whole Family

As much fun as reading Valentine’s Day books with the family is, there are also other things to do, such as crafting and cooking. This book is full of delicious recipes and fun crafts to try during the days leading up to Valentine’s Day.

7 Valentines Books to Read with Your Family - Tipsaholic.com

 

Love books? Check out 5 Favorite Potty Books, 7 Great and Classic ABC Books, and 6 Ways to Teach Your Toddler to Love Reading.

 

“I’m Elisa and I live in Austin, Texas with my husband and our two little girls. I used to teach reading and writing, but now I stay at home with my two kiddos and read and write in my spare time. I also love to undertake DIY projects, find new recipes on Pinterest, and dream about someday finally completing our home. Above all, I love to learn about new things and sharing my new-found knowledge with others.” Please check out my blog What the Vita!

4 Steps to a Great Kids’ Reading Nook

Steps and Inspiration to Create a Great Kids' Reading Nook

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If you are a passionate reader, you know the thrill that can fill you when you pick up the right book and curl up on a porch swing. As you watch the children in your life becoming familiar with books, it’s likely you want the same for them. These ideas will help you to inspire those young minds in subtle and appealing ways through the creation of the perfect reading space within your home. If you’re not a great lover of reading [yet!], then these ideas are not only for those children, but for you.

4 Steps to Create a Great Kids Reading Nook via Tipsaholic.com

If you are a passionate reader, you know the thrill that can fill you when you pick up the right book and curl up on a porch swing. As you watch the children in your life becoming familiar with books, it’s likely you want the same for them. These ideas will help you to inspire those young minds in subtle and appealing ways through the creation of the perfect kids’ reading nook within your home. If you’re not a great lover of reading [yet!], then these ideas are not only for those children, but for you. (featured image via Sew Liberated)

Step 1: Find a place for your space.

While it would seem simplest to throw a cushion in the middle of the playroom and call it good, really give this space some thought. Will it be outside? Inside? In which room? A reading space should be easily accessible but relatively quiet, clean, and away from high traffic areas. Good light is also an important aspect of a reading environment and certainly something to consider if you are limited in light sources. If you’re wondering how to work the space into a room, check out the photo inspiration and tutorials on these 6 slides:

  • slide 1: kids reading canopy in a corner
  • slide 2: simple reading space under the stairs
  • slide 3: outdoor reading space
  • slide 4: closet reading nook
  • slide 5: kids corner reading
  • slide 6: book nook on the landing at the top of the stairs

Step 2: Build it from the floor up.

What do you picture when you think of a good reading space? Is it angular and industrial, or soft and natural? This space is going to need some work. Start simply and consider adding “custom” details as you go. Pillows, a few stuffed animals, and a light blanket are great ways to add comfort and style. If you want to get even more creative, consider a few of these ideas for cozy little nooks:

  • slide 7: DIY closet bench and bookshelves tutorial
  • slide 8: A-frame reading tent tutorial
  • slide 9: Super-simple DIY canopy tutorial
  • slide 10: Lighted reading space under loft bed
  • slide 11: Reading corner bench from pallets tutorial

Step 3: Add to your basic space.

Aside from the comfy-cozies like pillows and stuffed animals, there are other things you may want to add to your space. If it is inside, try bringing a little bit of the outdoors in. A small plant or two will add an enticing, organic freshness. Along with nature, keep in mind the different ways children may want to experience reading. Including a CD player or electronic device in the space and a number of books for listening will draw in even the most reluctant of readers. If you’re looking for more inspiration, check out these ideas at Remodelaholic. And don’t forget the books!

  • slide 12: simple add-ons for a corner reading nook

Step 4: What about the books?

The books and their location relative to the reading environment are going to be important. If you can, keep books on low shelves or in baskets near the reading space, or lying within it. Books that are out of sight will rarely be touched. If you worry about books getting chewed or otherwise demolished by younger children, you might try keeping a basket up higher and bringing it down at naptimes or when supervision is possible.

  • slide 13: nursery book slings by Smith Peas

If you want the children in your life to embrace this new reading environment, show them the way. They will be much more likely to enter the space and feel at home there if you are the one to introduce them and teach them about it. And who knows, you might just find yourself there more often than you think – without the children.

4 Steps To A Great Kids Reading Nook via Tipsaholic.com

Kayla Lilly is a photographer, writer, wife, and mama making a house a home in eastern Idaho. She met her mister while working at an amusement park and married him a year later after deciding there was no way to live without him. The amusement has continued as they’ve added three kids and a passel of pets to their lives while finishing college and starting a photography business. Drawing inspiration from the whirlwinds of marriage, parenthood, and the media, Kayla blogs at www.utterlyineperienced.blogspot.com, and spends the rest of her time chasing chickens, organizing junk drawers, diapering toddlers, and photographing everyone willing to step in front of her lens.

6 Ways Teach Your Toddler To Love Reading

Your child may not start to learn to read until kindergarten, but that doesn’t mean he or she can’t love reading before then. Toddlers love to explore and learn and try new things, so age two to five is a great time to show them how much fun a good book can be. Here are six ways to help you teach your toddler to love reading!

Teach Your Toddler To Love Reading via Tipsaholic.com

Make books available

This is so obvious it almost doesn’t need to be said, but you need to have some books on hand if you’re going to teach your toddler to love reading. Whether you buy them new or gently used, or just have a rotating pile borrowed from the library, make sure to have at least a few children’s books in your home at all times. If you don’t want to have a ton of picture books cluttering up your house, an anthology of children’s books is a great way to have lots of stories without sacrificing a ton of shelf space.

 

Let them play with books

This is a hard one for me. As a serious bibliophile, it sometimes pains me to let very young children handle books. What if they tear a page? What if they chew on it? What if they ruin it?? I’ve had to get over my need for pristine books, though, and just let the kids explore. Toddlers learn about the world by testing their limits and using as many senses as possible. Turning pages, throwing books, and yes, sometimes gnawing on the covers are all just ways for kids to figure out how books work. By allowing them to play with books, I’m teaching my girls that books are meant to be enjoyed, not just left on a shelf to collect dust. Any special books are kept out of reach, but the rest of our collection is available for any child to look at…or sit on or stack into a big pile or push around in a stroller, as the case may be!

 

Make reading part of your daily routine

I mentioned this when talking about how to teach your baby to love reading, and will probably say it again: children thrive on predictability. Find fifteen minutes in your day to have regular story time with your toddler, whether it’s right after dinner or before you leave for work in the morning or while your older kids work on homework after school. That one-on-one time will become precious to both of you, and your toddler will associate feelings of love, peace, and contentment with reading.

 

Have snacks on hand

Toddlers are busy! Sitting still and being quiet aren’t exactly their favorite things to do, but if you’re going to read together, both are necessary. So how do you keep your little one occupied while you read? Feed her. You read while she munches on apple slices.  She may seem to be paying more attention to her snack than to the story, but you might also be surprised how closely she is listening.

 

Talk about what you are reading

Reading the same books over and over again can get boring. Shake things up by talking about the pictures or asking your toddler questions about the story. Have your child identify colors, count objects, look for certain shapes or letters on a page, or make predictions about what will happen next. Activities like these can help build vocabulary, foster creativity, and improve reading comprehension.

You can also talk about books when you aren’t reading. Spotting a baby bird at the park might remind you of Are You My Mother? Reading books like How Do Dinosaurs Eat Their Food? can be helpful in teaching table manners. Harry the Dirty Dog could spark conversations about dogs, or baths, or how fun it is to play outside in the dirt. Include the stories you read in your day-to-day conversations to help your child connect them to real life.

 

Let them participate

When reading familiar books–the ones you’ve read a thousand times–let your toddler help you. This works especially well with rhyming books. For example, I will read, “I do not like…” and my daughter says, “Green eggs and ham,” then I read, “I do not like them…” and she says, “Sam-I-Am!” Your child will learn to pay closer attention and follow along, because he never knows when it will be his turn to “read” the next part!

 

Go to the library

Libraries are a great place for toddlers to learn to love reading. Many have regularly scheduled story times for young children, usually with interactive elements like songs or finger games. Talk to your librarians about ways to foster a love of reading at home. They can recommend the best new books, point you toward great classics, give you ideas for making reading fun, and suggest other resources in the community or online that can help you. If you don’t know where the nearest library to you is, look it up on LibWeb and start taking advantage of this great–and free!–resource.

 

Jen is the mother of two sweet girls; her days are filled with Dr. Seuss books and laundry, block castles and pink tutus. Reading is her first passion. Finding and testing out delicious recipes is a close second. She and her husband are working on making their fixer-upper home into something amazing. It’s a satisfying but painfully slow process. Read more from Jen at her blog: Nothing Can Come Of Nothing

5 Favorite Potty Training Books

5 Great Potty Training Books via Tipsaholic.com

Potty training isn’t a lot of fun, but you can make the experience much more fun and bearable for you and your toddler by bringing out these five potty training books. These books are funny and cheerful, but they also come with important potty training lessons.

 

5 Best Potty Training Books via Tipsaholic.com

Potty by Leslie Patricelli

This cute little board potty training book tells the story of a little toddler who doesn’t want to go in his diaper, but is unsure what to do next. He observes where his cat and dog “goes” and then figures what he needs to do next. My toddler loves the book and requests to read it every time she sits on the potty.

Danny is Done with Diapers by Rebecca O’Connell

If your toddler is learning his ABCs at the same time he’s learning how to use the potty, this book will hit two birds with one stone. With the use of lots of alliteration and detailed, colorful drawings, this potty training book shows a wide variety of potty designs and different ways to go potty, including moms and dads on the toilet and public bathrooms.

Dinosaur vs. the Potty by Bob Shea

This is a very silly and lighthearted potty training book that will have your toddler laughing and roaring at the dinosaur. The boisterous little dinosaur drinks water, plays in water, and plays in the rain and doesn’t need to go to the potty… or does he? Even though this is just a fun book, there’s still a good lesson in it: when you need to dance around the floor, it probably means that you need to go to potty!

Where’s the Poop? by Julie Markes

Flap books are popular with toddlers and this book is no exception. Teach your toddler that every animal and person needs to go to potty, including elephants, panda bears, and even penguins. For the toddler who’s scared to poop in the potty, this potty training book will alleviate that fear and show that it’s perfectly normal and good!

Even Firefighters Go to the Potty by Wendy Wax and Naomi Wax

This potty training book shows that everyone uses the potty, from firefighters to doctors, and that it’s ok to stop what you’re doing to relieve yourself. That’s an especially important lesson for busy toddlers who don’t want to stop playing to go to the potty!

 

For more books for your toddler, check out these seven essential children’s books for ages 1-3!

 

“I’m Elisa and I live in Austin, Texas with my husband and our two little girls. I used to teach reading and writing, but now I stay at home with my two kiddos and read and write in my spare time. I also love to undertake DIY projects, find new recipes on Pinterest, and dream about someday finally completing our home. Above all, I love to learn about new things and sharing my new-found knowledge with others.”  Please check out my blog What the Vita!