Archives for August 2011

Habits of Heart and Mind (and a Playful Learning Giveaway, too!)

Hello readers!  I”m so excited about today”s post! Simple Kids contributor Mariah Bruehl has written an amazing book called .  I have been reading my copy and making notes likes crazy, getting so many new ideas and inspiration from her. I”ll admit that I”m a little biased because I think quite highly of Mariah, but I truly think this is one of those books that belongs on every parent”s bookshelf.

Mariah is also the genius behind the website and and the e-course . She”s got a fun post and a terrific giveaway for you today. Thanks Mariah! – Kara

This giveaway is now closed.  The winner will be announced on Tuesday, August 30th.  Thanks!

Now that the book has made its way out into the world, many people have asked me what my goal was in writing the book. I must say, that is a hard question to answer, but if I had to choose one thing that I hope to accomplish, it is that children and families co-create habits of heart and mind.

Yes, it is important that children memorize their addition and multiplication facts and become proficient in important skills and drills. Yet, if they are not developed within a larger context of intellectual character then we are missing the mark.

Having written the book roughly two years ago, I have had the benefit of seeing how many of the learning experiences have had an impact on my daughters over time. Not only in the development of their skills, but also in their disposition towards fully utilizing and expressing their new-found abilities.

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Easy Ways to Surprise and Delight Your Children

The following is by contributor Amy Anderson of Let’s Explore.

My kids love a good surprise – how about yours? Since the baby days of peek-a-boo, I’ve loved finding little ways to add more smiles and giggles to our days.

As often as I can, I look for sweet, memorable, or unexpected things I can do for my kids. I feel like I shine as a parent when I make the everyday things special – these moments fill me up as much as they do for my girls.

So, here are a few ideas I have up my sleeve that I know will both surprise and delight my two girls. They are easy, frugal, and don’t require much more than my time. There are going to be lots of smiles around here!

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Ages and Stages: Toddlers

I”m taking a few weeks away from blogging as my family celebrates our new baby, Mia.   Before I “unplugged” from the computer, I worked on this series about Ages and Stages.  Today”s installment is about toddlers.  I hope you enjoy it!  Best Wishes – Kara

Toddlerhood:  a time when our child is often full on emotion and short on patience.  But, toddlerhood can also be a time of great joy, silliness, and bonding.

In fact, many parents I know, myself included, declare these years to be among their favorite ages, despite the sometimes rocky phases one and two year olds can go through.

Patience and Laughter

It is true that toddlers have a reputation for getting frustrated easily and sometimes lashing out.  They aren”t naturally very patient so it is important that their caregivers are patient.

I know that this is sometimes easier said than done, but one thing I have learned about patience is that it gets easier the more you practice it.  And toddlers give us lots of chances to practice patience.

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