What Dance Can Do for Your Child & Summer Dance Classes
I'm sure, at some point, you've all read or conversed about the benefits of dance lessons and the many life lessons gained by having your child participate in dance. For example you learn how to push yourself beyond your limits and reach your personal best, how to handle disappointment, learn time management skills, instill discipline, team work, humility, tenacity, and passion. I am living proof of how truly amazing life can be when you are passionate about something.
But where is the proof in our children? Having had 5 senior dancers graduate this year from high school and Turning Pointe Dance Studio, I have the proof and it was displayed by these 5 remarkable teenagers! These young women had been dancing with me since they were small. One of these young ladies used to cry every time her Mom dropped her off at the studio. It was clear that she loved to dance so her family kept at it, persevered and conquered and now she is performing in front of thousands of people with poise and confidence. These 5 young women all graduated with high honors (3 of which were in the top 20 students at Falmouth High School) and have managed to maintain rigorous dance schedules. They are loyal, team players even at times of stress and frustration. They are role models and I am confident that they will do amazing things in our community and world. They were accepted to top Universities and are majoring and minoring in subjects like forensic science, dance, art, architecture, neuroscience, physical therapy, and biochemistry.
Here is more of why...
Dance teaches the values and skills of creativity, problem solving, and risk taking.
Dance lessons are a great place for kids to make new friends. A dance studio provides a safe dance family and community during a time when life can be unpredictable and confusing, especially during adolescence.
Dance education helps students develop physical fitness, appreciation of their body, mindfulness of health and effective stress management skills. In today’s technology-driven world, it is becoming increasingly more important for children to adopt a physically active lifestyle early on.
Dance gives non-verbal children and outlet to express their emotions. Dance gives children with sensory related issues an opportunity to move freely through space, to work on gross and fine motor skills, balance, and spatial awareness. Many parents find that dance lessons help improve behavioral issues, such as hyperactivity.
Studies have shown that children who participate in dance lessons tend to perform better in the classroom. Dance requires discipline and focus, which translates to an improved academic performance. Dance lessons help reinforce educational basics, like counting. Children also learn to differentiate right from left and fast from slow.
So for all the parents out there with little ones that are shy or you can't get them unattached to your leg (I am one of those parents)... keep at it. It's all worth it and above is the proof!
Laura Sciortino is mother of 6 year old Henry and 4 year old Cordelia, a retired professional ballerina, and owner and dance teacher at Turning Pointe Dance Studio in Falmouth.
Summer classes begin June 26 and there are still spots in most classes!
Drool Baby Expo
This past week I was so excited to see that Magic Beans is going to be hosting a second Drool Baby Expo this year! I have been to Drool twice since it deput in 2011; once in 2012 and again in 2014. The Drool Baby Expo is an event that allows expectant parents, parents, grandparents and people who just love baby products to check out all the newest and greatest products and services all in one place. Each product booth as one to three representatives from the company that will chat with you and demo products as well as make suggestions of what might work best for your family. What I like about this is all the products are right there for you to get your hands on and try out; want to try actually folding or pushing that stroller you can, not sure that the car seat you saw advertised online really simplifies installation try it out.
The second Drool Baby Expo of 2017 will take place September, 14 from 3pm-9pm at the Westin Waterfront Hotel in Boston. Tickets are now on sale now and there are options for every price range. The least expensive option (the early bird pricing) starts at $10 for Value Ticket just gets you into the event (great for spouse/family/friend), $20 gets you a Standard Ticket which includes one drink ticket and raffle opportunities, $30 for Couples Standard Ticket (one standard ticket and one value ticket), for $45 you get a Premium Ticket which includes a gift bag, raffle opportunities and two drink tickets for $10 more you can get a couples ticket, then for $100 ($10 more for couples) you get a Single VIP Ticket which includes a super deluxe gift bag with over $200 in products and services a gift card to Magic Beans, raffle opportunities and two drink tickets. The exhibitors that I am most looking forward to checking out include Ergo, Britax, Bob, Thule, Uppababy, LuLaRoe, Astlen and Bugaboo. At the event you have the opportunity to purchase all the products or order them at the on-site Magic Beans Pop-up Shop. most with discounts or special deals (you do not actually have to take the products that night).
The VIP and Premium tickets do sell out quickly so if you want them order soon! If you plan on going I recommend getting there early as it does get crowd as afternoon turns to evening. I am looking forward to attending and checking out all the new products without my kids (kids are not prohibited but they make it hard to check products out and the venue is not really child friendly for toddler and up; babies in carriers would be fine).
Have you been to Drool? Might you go this year?
Molly, her husband, and their 4 and 6 year split their time between their little piece of the cape in Orleans and Cambridge. She was a kindergarten teacher before her oldest was born then became a SAHM. She loves running, books, supporting literacy, nature walks, arts, craft, knitting and sewing as well as being outside and on the beach!
Cape Cod Child Development hits close to home with "Rock of Ages"
By: Corinne Cameron
Life has been absolutely non-stop crazy for me, where I have not been able to write a blog post in ages. Things are no different right now, but there is a show, “Rock of Ages” coming up this weekend at the Tilden Arts Center that made me wake up an hour early so I could tell you about it. It’s that important!
Now you are sitting here thinking, Ok, theatre is entertaining and all, but important? Yes, important. The production has one goal, to serve as a fundraiser for a non-profit agency called Cape Cod Child Development. From May 12-13th the actors will perform 3 shows to raise money for CCCDP as well as the Cape Conservatory, who is receiving 10% of the proceeds to go towards student scholarships. I’ll tell you more about it further down but let me start by saying that I am not affiliated with the organization in any way other than being a former client on behalf of my 5 year old son, Remy.
Remy was born prematurely at 36 weeks and had a rough start to life, spending a total of 25 days in the NICU and Special care nursery off cape, before he was well enough to come home. Because of this he automatically qualified for services through CCCDP but little did we know, just how much we would need them and the impact the organization would have on us. Remy started off with some fairly minor stiffness on the right side of his body, a side effect of all the medications pumped into his delicate little body, and we utilized home based physical therapy services through their Early Intervention (EI) program. As he developed, he not only met his milestones, most were way ahead of the typical schedule. Then at about a year old, my husband and I, with our case manager, noticed that he wasn’t as vocal as we would have liked, so we monitored it for a bit. By the time he was 16 months, we decided to have a speech evaluation completed and the rest is history.
To make a long story, short, we had the pleasure of having CCCDP in our home multiple times a week to help Remy with his significant speech delays until he “aged out” at 3 years old and transitioned over to the public school system. In addition to having our case manager, we had a speech therapist, as well as a child development specialist working with not only Remy, but my husband and myself. What impressed me most was not only the service that they were providing, but their willingness to work within our personal ideals and boundaries. It was the definition of “child centered” and ‘individualized”.It was a sad day when we had our last EI appointment but also exciting to think of the future. Remy falls on the autism spectrum, with his receptive and expressive language being his largest stumbling block, but he is doing outstanding! The fact that it took what seemed like forever to hear my sweet boys voice say “mama’, it is even sweeter to now have him say, without prompting “Mama, I love you so much”. I can honestly say that it if wasn’t for CCCDP, I would still be waiting for “Mama”, as Early Intervention is key!
Early Intervention is actually the tip of the ‘iceberg” for Cape Cod Child Development as they have several programs to serve the Capes most vulnerable residents of all socioeconomic levels.They have the FUN (Family United Network) Program which has groups such as Music & Movement, Wildlife Playgroups, Children’s playgroups where they can explore fairytales, folk tales and original stories, Little Scientists and much more! They have Family Child Care, Preschool & Headstart Programs, and a Teen Parent Program. Since a good portion of clients fall at or below the poverty line, this non-profit organization relies on donations and grants to ensure they can serve any family that needs their service.
So what is so special about this production of “Rock of Ages” when we have an incredible amount of community theatre on Cape Cod? Well not only have some of the best talent on Cape been assembled, they have billed it as “Broadway meets Cape Cod” as they not only have 4 professional actors/vocalists joining the cast in lead roles, they have various production members that work in the business, working to make sure this show shines. I will mention that they have labeled the production PG-14, so this is an “Adult Night out to support our little ones”
So call your babysitter, grab your significant other or group of friends, go to www.CCCDP.org/children/events and reserve your tickets for one of the 3 shows and get transported back in time to re-live (Yikes! I am showing my age…..or live for the first time), your 1980’s rockstar dreams!
If you go:
Cape Cod Child Development Presents:
“Rock of Ages” by Chris D’Arienzo and arrangements by Ethan Popp
Featuring National Tour & Broadway Musical Artists
May 12th-13th, 2017
Tilden Arts Center, Cape Cod Community College
Corinne Cameron, an only child originally hailing from Long Island, New York but spent vacations and holidays at her families second home in Brewster since she was 3 weeks old. She was fortunate enough to be able to settle on the Cape full time in the Summer of 2000. A couple of years after marrying her husband Robert, her father suffered a life changing brain bleed leading to combining households with her parents, so she could care for him during the day. This led to purchasing a home in East Falmouth where they have been since May of 2014.
Professionally, Corinne was a social worker before becoming disabled from full time employment after a April 2007 car accident, however her most cherished “job” came to fruition on 11/11/11 when she gave birth to her rainbow baby, Remy. Remy was her personal miracle after suffering 10 miscarriages beforehand, a topic she is passionate about exposing as countless couples (1 in 4 pregnancies) every year suffer the same fate in silence. Along with raising Remy, who falls on the autistic spectrum, Corinne is a Director within the community theatre scene here on the Cape, as well as at Mashpee Middle High School since 2010. She also sits as Vice President on the Board of Directors at the Woods Hole Theater Company and runs an online support group of over 4000 patients, like her, who suffer from Systemic Lupus Erythematosus. In her spare time she enjoys various crafts, cake & cookie decorating, watching movies and playing board games with her family and most importantly attending bible studies and events at her church.
Surprise Ride is a monthly subscription box geared for kids five and up. It is meant to be used as part of a homeschooling unit or can be used to supplement your child's education at home. My six year old really enjoyed opening the box and trying the activities and materials. You can try it free here just like we did.
The subscription is $24 month to month and if you get 6 or 12 months you save. Each month you receive a different themed box which has directions, two activities, a book, snack and some fun extras. This month’s theme was Birdsville. One activity was decorating a birdhouse all the supplies were included even a disposable apron; my six year old thought this was a great Sunday afternoon activity. The second activity was making seed balls which we did has a family activity. The kids loved getting their hands dirty by rolling the soil/clay mix into ball then sticking seed in/on them. We will put the seed balls outside after they dry and the kids are looking forward to them growing into wildflowers in the spring. Snack was a seed and dried fruit mix which was enjoyed. The book Blacky the Crow was a little old for my six year old to enjoy. A bird glider and whistle were the extra; I could have done without the whistle as it is very loud. My box came with a hand written thanks for ordering note and lots of interesting facts about birds. My kids enjoyed the box for an afternoon of fun and if I was homeschooling I could definitely see using the box each month as a starting point for a unit of study.
Try Surprise Ride free today and let me know what you think!
Usborne Books & More Independent Educational Consultant
I am always looking for people to join my Usborne team, host parties (Facebook or home), or just share these wonderful books! For more information visit my website or contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Plus follow me on Instagram www.instagram.com/mollyhubnersusbornebooks/
Cape Cod Children’s Museum Celebrates Jumpstart’s Read for the Record® Day
Cape Cod Children’s Museum Unites with National Early Education Organization to Highlight the Importance of High-Quality Education for All Children
Jumpstart, a national early education organization, will partner with Cape Cod Children’s Museum in Mashpee for the 11th anniversary of Jumpstart’s Read for the Record, a national campaign that helps address the educational inequities that leave too many children unprepared for kindergarten.
On October 27, 2016, children and adults will join forces for the world’s largest shared reading experience, known as Jumpstart’s Read for the Record. Since 2006, this 24-hour celebration has mobilized over 17 million people, and Jumpstart holds the world reading record for the most people reading the same book on the same day. This year’s official campaign book, The Bear Ate Your Sandwich by Julia Sarcone-Roach (Alfred A. Knopf Books for Young Readers), will not only inspire adults to read with children, but will also spur policymakers and organizations to take action towards transformative change in early education while putting books in the hands of more children across the country.
A limited number of special paperback editions of The Bear Ate Your Sandwich will be available for purchase at Cape Cod Children’s Museum. By Pre-registering for the Museum’s Read for the Record event, you will have an exclusive opportunity to purchase a copy of The Bear Ate Your Sandwich for the special price of just $4.50. This exclusive price is available only the day of the event and only to those who Pre-register at www.CapeCodChildrensMuseum.org.
Special editions feature reading tips, vocabulary words, reading comprehension questions, and conversation starters developed by Jumpstart’s team of early education experts. All proceeds help bring Jumpstart’s program to preschool children in under-resourced communities across the country.
Jumpstart is a national early education organization working toward the day every child in America enters kindergarten prepared to succeed. By participating in Jumpstart’s year-long program, children develop the language, literacy, and social-emotional skills they need to be ready for school, setting them on a path for lifelong success. Since 1993, Jumpstart has trained 45,000 college students and community volunteers to transform the lives of 95,000 preschool children nationwide. Learn more at jstart.org and follow us on Twitter at @Jumpstartkids.
ABOUT THE BEAR ATE YOUR SANDWICH
Julia Sarcone-Roach’s The Bear Ate Your Sandwich is the tale of a bear, lost in the city, who happens upon an unattended sandwich in the park. The bear’s journey from forest to city and back home again is full of happy accidents, funny encounters, and sensory delights. The story is so engrossing, that you will not see the surprise ending coming!
Working with Clay…No Guarantees
Sandy Nickerson, Head of School
Ok, full disclosure. When I was in college, I took a clay class. I worked very hard in that class. I just knew I could impress myself and my professor while I was at it. I wedged, slabbed, coiled, pinched, threw, and created all kinds of glaze concoctions. I spent hours perfecting each technique. And no matter what I did, how I did it, or how long I did it, the results were always the same oddly familiar shapes. Dare I call them vessels? I guess they were vessels, each with a unique likeness to my childhood mud pies. Needless to say, I achieved a ‘C’ in that course. I considered myself lucky…considering the hauntingly nostalgic repeated forms.
About 25 years later, as an Art teacher at Bridgeview Montessori School, I very much wanted our school to have a kiln. I knew our art curriculum would not be complete without our students experiencing the process of bringing a clay piece to its completed glazed finish. The Bridgeview Parent Association jumped aboard and raised money to pay for a new kiln and the kiln shed. The goal was reached, and the kiln and shed were installed. At last, there I stood, a ‘C’ clay student in charge of the new clay curriculum. I took a deep breath and contacted Kim, a local potter, and a parent at our school and pleaded for her guidance. As a parent volunteer, she helped me choose the most appropriate clay and glaze to use with children. She reminded me of all the steps involved in bringing a clay piece to its finish. We started by offering an After School Clay Class that Kim helped me teach. At home, I studied my clay vocabulary words.
Our clay adventure was underway, our students and their ‘C’ clay teacher were ready to explore, make mistakes, discover, make mistakes, and create three dimensional art pieces, some beautiful, some not. Each step in the process provided opportunity for great success and undeniable failure. Working hard did not factor into guaranteed successful outcomes. As the teacher, I could only guarantee the full process… celebrate the student successes and help students endure the failures, and continue on to the next work.
Here’s the full process. Wedge your clay to make sure there are no air pockets. Build your piece and make sure all added pieces are scratched and slipped, being sure not to create any air pockets. Allow piece to dry until leather hard with no moisture left. Bisque fire. Glaze piece making sure to layer every glaze color at least three times. Glaze fire. Bring completed pieces home without breaking them.
Air pockets will cause your piece, no matter how beautifully built, to explode in the kiln. Not scratching and slipping properly will cause your piece to break during the leather-drying phase. Little bits and pieces that managed to stay connected in drying may still fall off during the bisque firing. Failure to layer the glaze at least three times will lead to a “watery” layer of color that is bound to disappoint. I am sure we all understand the consequences of breaking clay pieces on the way home.
As a teacher, the stressful part of teaching clay is that I cannot assure my hard working students that they will not make a fatal mistake along the way. I can’t see air pockets or incorrect scratching and slipping technique or that a leather hard piece won’t slip out of my hands and fall crashing to the floor. All I can do is be a good role model for picking myself up, dusting off, and trying again when something disastrous happens to my demonstration pieces. My students and I have worked and grown together. They have encouraged me through my trials, as I have encouraged them through theirs. I start each clay lesson with the words, “There are no guarantees.”
Why all this trouble anyway? First of all, everyone should experience working three dimensionally. Most importantly, all learners need to experience the excitement of working hard even though they know from the start there will be no guaranteed success. Yet my belief is that the lesson is not as important as the attribute that can be gained… that attribute is true grit. Handling success is wonderful, but the real challenge is handling it when the going gets tough. I am proud that this ‘C’ clay student did not use her ‘C’ as an excuse to never teach clay. I am very proud of our clay students who continue to exclaim, ”Yeah, its clay time!” even though each of them has experienced disappointment while working with clay. I am equally proud of our cumulative successes and disappointments. Together, they have led to growth and grit.
Oh, and those annoying mud pie forms previously mentioned, they are fewer and farther between. Phew!
Bridgeview Montessori School
885 Sandwich Road
P.O. Box 270
Sagamore, MA 02561
Director of Admission: Suzanne Lawson at email@example.com
Serving ages 2.9 to 12 years, Bridgeview Montessori School, guided by the educational philosophy of Dr. Maria Montessori, provides a child-centered learning environment in which students develop a love of learning that will sustain them throughout their lives. Our goals include: the development of the whole child, emotionally, physically and intellectually; academic excellence gained through independent and critical thinking; inspired learning through creativity, courage, passion, personal responsibility and respect for self, others, and the world in which we live. We encourage our students to approach their work and their world with a sense of wonder, curiosity and the excitement of discovery. We value diversity and, above all, we value a compassionate and peaceful community. Bridgeview Montessori School awards upwards of $70,000 in need-based financial aid annually! Our school is allergen free. A wonderful small school for all kinds of learners.
Ivy Kids Kit Review
I recently had the founder of Ivy Kids at one of my Usborne Facebook parties; we got to talking about how I was a former kindergarten teacher and wished I had more time to make up boxes like she sold and she offered to send me a kit for an unbiased review. “Ivy Kids is a monthly educational subscription box for children ages 3-8. Our goal is to make every moment with your child "quality time." Have the tools at your fingertips to ensure your child has a solid foundation in math, literacy, and science. Help your child build confidence and be well-rounded in all disciplines to ensure future academic success. The activities in the Ivy Kits have been created by certified early childhood teachers with children of their own.” (http://ivy-kids.com/)
The kids and I were very excited to find the box had arrived while we were away over the weekend. The kit arrives in a 12”x4”x8” boxes that also double as storage for the supplies. In each boxes are a book and 10 activities to go with it (for an extra $5 you can add sibling supplies). I received A house for Hermit Crab by Eric Carle (which happens to be a book I am very familiar with and used while teaching). When we opened the box the first item we saw was the book A House for Hermit Crab and a bookmark with questions and suggests for getting the most out of reading and rereading the book. Most of the other items come in bags sort by activity which is great so you can grab a bag and get started (some of the materials are shared between activities). Each activity comes with a sheet that tells you about the activity including materials provided, how to play, suggestion on differentiating the activity for different ages/skill level, questions to ask to scaffold learning and learning goals/developing skills list.
So far my kids have really enjoyed reading the book A House for Hermit Crab and discussing what he chooses for his shell over the year. They have also enjoyed creating their own habitats for the hermit crab they “grew” in a bowl of water (one of those add water and grow creatures) and creating a special shell for their hermit crab using the plate as a shell and the stickers for decoration. The painting of the shells and sun catchers definitely was great for the kids fine motor skills and labeling/experimenting with colors. We are looking forward to pulling the boxes out in coming weeks and enjoying some Hermit Crab Facts, Identifying Hermit Crab Body Parts, Doing some Hermit Crab Shell Observations, Sequencing Hermit Crab's Year, Name decorating, Sorting Shells plus playing Hermit Crab Shell Race.
You can buy individual boxes or sign up for monthly deliveries of a box for a month to month, three months or six months. In each boxes there are enough activities/ideas to last about a month. I really enjoyed being able to just grab the box and let my kids (three and five) choice an activity and have all the materials right there. Hopefully I will find some time before my daughter finishes school to assemble some of my own boxes if not I will have to get a three month subscription to Ivy Kids which is totally worth the $36.95 a month cost.
To find more info on Ivy Kids or to order kit(s) visit their website http://ivy-kids.com/
Usborne Books & More Independent Educational Consultant
I am always looking for people to join my Usborne team, host parties (Facebook or home), or just share these wonderful books! For more information visit my website or contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Plus follow me on Instagram www.instagram.com/mollyhubnersusbornebooks/
Poems in Praise of Dizzy Days
Kooky Crumbs by J. Patrick Lewis illustrated by Mary Uhles is a silly book of poems for all ages. The style and length of these goofy poems vary page to page but all are about obscure holidays across the year. Whether it is Potato day or Vinegar day being celebrated there is plenty of fun to go around. What other crazy holidays can you find and write a poem about?
Here is a list of all the days in the book and an activity suggestion for each!
Funny Holiday dates for 2016
Hat Day 1/15
Activity: make a fun hat
Weatherperson’s Day 2/5
Activity: write your own weather forecast
Inventors' Day 2/11
Activity: make your own invention
Telecommunications Day 5/17
Activity: explore the history of ways to communicate to others far away
Pancake Day 2/9
Activity: have a pancake party
Cereal Day 3/7
Activity: make cereal necklaces
Math Day 10/14
Activity: make your own math challenges up and read This is not a Math Book
Telephone Day 4/25
Activity: call someone who you don’t usually call
Zipper Day 4/29
Activity: make a list of all the things zippers are used for
Change a Light Day 10/4
Activity: design your own lamp
Make a Dream Day 1/13
Activity: talk about or make a list of your dreams
Sunscreen Day 5/27
Activity: Summer is coming design your own sunscreen Ad
Pencil Day 3/30
Activity: decorate pencils
Ride the Wind Day 8/23
Activity: make kites
UFO Day 7/2
Activity: write an UFO story
Smoke and Mirrors Day 3/29
Activity: be silly and read I’m a Dirty Dinosaur
Hot Dog Day 7/23
Activity: make hot dogs for dinner
Look Alike Day 4/20
Activity: dress up like each other
Happiness Happens Day 8/8
Activity: do something special for a friend or family member
Potato Day 8/19
Activity: go to the store and look at all the different potatoes then choose some for dinner
Hug A Greeting Card Writer Day 9/18
Activity: make your own greeting cards and read Cuddle Bear
DNA Day 4/25
Activity: talk about DNA
Vegetarian Day 10/1
Activity: prepare a vegetarian meal
Older Person Day 10/1
Activity: read Wilfrid Gordon McDonald Partridge
Card Playing Day 12/28
Activity: play a card game
Vinegar Day 11/1
Activity: make an explosion with vinegar and baking soda
Toilet Day 11/19
Activity: research toilets from around the world
Epitaph Day 11/2
Activity: write your own Epitaph
Sportsmanship Day 3/1
Activity: read Billie B., The Soccer Star or Hey Jack! The Winning Goal
Join us for our second speaker in our winter Speaker Series.
Thursday, February 11, 2016, 6:30 PM - 8:30 PM
Cape Cod Academy
50 Osterville West Barnstable Rd, Osterville, Massachusetts 02655
John Cumbler, Ph.D. was a distinguished professor of economic and environmental history at the University of Louisville. Today he resides in Wellfleet, MA. He is the author of several books, most recently Cape Cod: An Environmental History of a Fragile Ecosystem. Tonight...
- Learn what the Cape has been and what the Cape might become .
- Learn the ways in which resource usage and geography shaped the Cape’s past and may shape its future
-Learn how the Cape became the tourist destination it is today
-Learn how the Cape community has the opportunity to be a model for a sustainable future
Legoland: Great Day of Bonding Over Lego's With the Kids
***Editor’s note, this was a review of a place we decided to visit with our children. We were not asked in advance to provide a review. All thoughts and opinions belong to the author alone.
We decided to take the trip just north of the city of Boston this past weekend to Assembly Square in Somerville to visit the much talked about Legoland. We were lucky enough to find parking on the first floor of the parking garage almost next door to the entrance. We were greeted prior to entry by the most beautiful constructed giraffe we had ever seen! Once inside you are guided through upstairs via elevator. Then you arrive into a introduction video followed by taking part in some factory activities as part of a small group. If you are a frequent visitor of Legoland, you can skip this and arrive right into the first ride (which can also be skipped). The first ride takes you through a windy course while you fire “blasters” at zombies and other “enemies”. They take your picture at one point and you are invited to purchase it post ride at the counter immediately outside the exit.
After exiting you arrive into a large room broken into several areas: toddler/Duplo area; Ninjango training camp; another ride; race car construction and racing; a 4-D movie theatre; a Lego climbing apparatus/play area; a learning workshop; a food court; and a room filled with a model city of Boston which is right next to the exit.
We thoroughly enjoyed all the areas and thought they were well set up in terms of optimizing creative play with organization and room for enough to share. The kids favorite sections were: the Lego apparatus, the workshop, the movie and the rides. My personal favorite was the experience of the 4-D movie (feeling old since movies I saw as a kid were only 2-D and definitely not “high def”). The kids also really loved the movie and thought it was neat how it "snowed" on them. I also really loved the workshop. The experience is really geared for a 6 year old or older but our patient 5 year olds were able to handle it with some supervision. I thought this was a great experience and allowed the kids to actually learn why pieces go where they do which contributes to their engineering process. I also really loved the model city of Boston that had been created, complete with rowers on the Charles river, Logan Airport and so much more! This was an amazing display and some parts were interactive! The kids loved seeing the city come to life!
Let’s talk about cost.
We bought our tickets in advance on their website selecting the day and time of entry in advance. By doing so we paid $21.95 compared to the $29.95. The website advertises advance online saver passes can be purchased for as low as $14.95 however the only way to get this price is to go on the weekday evenings (which may work if you don’t have school age children or children who suffer from meltdowns at any time after 5pm). Friday night seems to be the best bang for your buck if you purchase in advance. Children 2 and under are free (They should consider changing this or at least making a separate price for varying ages of kids as a 3 year old does not get the same out of the experience as a 5 year old or older).
When you purchase online it asks if you wish to purchase an activity pack for $4. I did so thinking it would help enhance our visit. In my honest opinion I do not feel it did. Only a few of the stamps correlated with activities inside Legoland and several stamp machines were broken or there were extra ones with nothing to match it to. You do get a badge with them and you are allowed to get one each time you come, so once you have a lanyard there is no need to get another. Personally I would not purchase these again as I do not believe they are worth the additional cost. Save the extra bucks for making your own lego in the gift shop
A couple of things I noticed that could use improvement with very little effort. We went early on when it first opened at 10am and the bathrooms were spotless. Within 2 hours the bathrooms were utterly destroyed. Now I know this is primarily due to the customer, however someone having to make a pass every half hour to ensure everything is okay, as they do in restaurants would really help. It is important that the bathrooms be kept clean because remember everything they are playing with within the facility requires hands on learning, so germs can be very easily spread. I would also suggest the company maybe put in hand sanitizers sporadically throughout the facility to promote good hygiene. I would suggest visiting early in the day especially during cold/flu season to avoid huge exposure to potential germs plus you get the added benefit of little to no lines for the rides. You also are not allowed in outside food or drinks (though I saw some sneaky families getting things inside) which probably makes it tough on families and children with food allergies. My son has a peanut allergy but we planned ahead eating prior to entry and enjoying lunch after at one of the many restaurants in Assembly Square.
Overall we really enjoyed the visit and would definitely go again. We recommend waiting until the little ones are at least 4 years old so they can appreciate the majority of the activities. We hope at some point they are able to expand and accommodate a larger audience within the facility. Lastly, this is something we would love to see brought down to Cape Cod. Perhaps if the Cape Cod Mall decides to make changes as Kingston has we may see more places like this which we are sure would garner a very large customer base on the lego loving peninsula.
One of our new mom bloggers will be going soon and she will be sharing her tips and tricks for Legoland which we also hope you will find useful!
Have you been to Legoland? What are your thoughts?
Join Cindy Horgan, Executive Director & Family Support Coordinator for Cape Cod Children’s Place and discover the unique needs of boys as they grown and develop. Learn to promote skills that support their healthy emotional development and how to recognize the impact of media, culture and technology on boys and the messages they take from these influences. Become aware of current trends that affect boys and learn to support our boys as they make sense of the process of growing up.Pizza dinner and childcare included with registration.
Pre-registration is required. Call Cape Cod Children’s Place at 508-240-3310. Please indicate if you are in need of transportation. Funding support provided by a Family Centers grant through the Children’s Trust and a Coordinated Community & Family Engagement grant through the Mass. Dept. of Early Education and Care, administered by Cape Cod Children’s Place.
By: Suzanne Golden, M.S., CCC-SLP
By now, almost everyone has started back to school! It’s such an exciting time and as parents we want our children to tell us every little detail. However, our excited, “so… tell me about your day!” questions are usually met with a lot of, “I don’t know” and “I don’t remember” answers. Even if your child doesn’t have any difficulties with language, it can be hard to get them to spill the beans about their day! Here are some tips and tricks for getting a dialogue going with your child about his/her day at school.
· Avoid using open-ended statements like, “Tell me about your day.” Instead ask specific questions like “did you have gym today?” “what game did you play in gym?” or “what book did you read at circle time?”
· Know about your child’s school day so it is easier to ask specific questions. If you need to know what your child’s daily/weekly class schedule looks like, just ask the teacher!
· If you have a younger child that you drop off/pick up in the classroom, look around the classroom to see what they are working on. Use what you see in the classroom to come up with some questions to ask. “I saw that there were some books and a poem about fall in your classroom – did you learn about fall today? What did you learn?”
· Start a nightly tradition of asking the same question every night at dinner. For example “tell your high moment of the day and your low moment of the day” or “tell one thing that made you happy today and one thing that made you mad”. By asking the same questions every night your child will know what to expect and may start thinking about his/her answers earlier. Also, by including everyone at the table in the question-answering, it can provide good models for your child to learn how to answer.
Whatever strategies you use, I hope you are able to generate some good conversation and language about your child’s time at school! Good luck and happy back-to-school!
To schedule a screening or assessment please contact Golden Speech Therapy today.
Golden Speech Therapy
Suzanne Golden, M.S., CCC-SLP
By: Suzanne Golden, M.S., CCC-SLP
This week we met some friends at the Children’s Museum in Easton. It was a bit of a drive for us from Plymouth, but well worth it for a few hours of fun!
The Children’s Museum in Easton is housed in an old firehouse, which means the inside and outside have some pretty cool features! Inside the museum there are three floors full of kid-friendly activities, including a Fire Pole the kids can climb up! Outside there is a fenced in picnic area with sculptures and other interesting things to explore. One of my favorite things about this museum is that most of their activities really promote being creative, exploring and using language!
Here are some ways exploring at the children’s museum helps to promote language development:
· Spend some time in the various pretend play areas: rocket ship, train, stage with dress up clothes, kitchen area, fire truck, dinosaur room, doctors office. These pretend play situations can open your child up to a variety of vocabulary that may be new to him/her. Model language for your child and then allow him/her to take the lead and you can expand on whatever language/pretend play scripts he/she creates!
· Check out the rolling ball mazes. These mazes allow the child to drop a ball at the top and watch it make its way to the bottom. The ball maze on the bottom floor has pieces that can be moved so your child can explore different pathways. This activity opens the door for a variety of language about location, size and problem solving.
· Make new friends! A museum full of other children and parents is a great place to make new friends. Encourage your child’s social/pragmatic language skills by encouraging him/her to introduce him/herself to a new friend and engage in play with him/her.
If the Children’s Museum in Easton is too far of a drive, check out the Cape Cod
Children’s Museum, located in Mashpee. Although we didn’t go to the Cape Cod Children’s Museum this time, we have been there before and love exploring all of the various areas it has to offer!
I hope you take advantage of one of these great Children’s Museum and enjoy the rest of your summer, while also building speech/language skills!
For more information about the Children’s Museum in Easton, visit:
For more information about the Cape Cod Children’s Museum, visit: http://capecodchildrensmuseum.org/
To schedule a screening or assessment please contact Golden Speech Therapy today. www.goldenspeechtherapy.com
Does your child love films, love talking about films and love being on-camera?
If so, then we've got a camp for that! KIDS FIRST! Film Critics Summer Boot Camp
Martha’s Vineyard Film Society is partnering with KIDS FIRST! this summer to offer a new educational opportunity for island youth
If you have a 10 to 15-year-old in your life who loves films and dreams of being on the red carpet, KIDS FIRST! has the perfect opportunity. Your tween can participate in the KIDS FIRST! Film Critics Boot Camp this summer in Martha’s Vineyard at Martha’s Vineyard Film Center for an experience they will never forget.
Give your child the opportunity to build self confidence and learn more about behind-the-scenes aspects of the film industry as they critique the latest films, learn to write reviews, practice interview techniques, improve on-camera skills, visit with industry professionals, and are coached by seasoned professionals. All campers will have the opportunity to join the KIDS FIRST! Film Critic team of reporters.
Richard Paradise, Director of the Martha’s Vineyard Film Center comments, “We are thrilled to partner with KIDS FIRST!, a nationally known educational non-profit, in bringing this opportunity to the youth on Martha’s Vineyard this summer.”
The week-long boot camp on Martha’s Vineyard camp will meet from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. daily. Locations and dates include: August 11 to Aug. 15, 2014 – Martha’s Vineyard, Martha’s Vineyard Film Center, (79 Beach Road, Vineyard Haven, MA 02568)
For more information and to register, go to http://www.kidsfirst.org/become-a-juror/2014.BootCamp.html Please act soon, because space is limited to 12 students. Tuition: $459. There are a limited number of scholarships available to island residents – please contact Richard Paradise for scholarship opportunities.
For more information go to: http://mvfilmsociety.com/educational-programs-2/
KIDS FIRST!/Coalition for Quality Children’s Media
112 W. San Francisco St., Ste 305A
Santa Fe, NM 87501
We really love the Kids Academy app! It is the perfect learning app for my preschooler! He and I loved the graphics and bright colors. The games which focus on letters, number sense, tracing, puzzles, reading and so much more are age appropriate and fun according to my 4 year old. There is frequent positive reinforcement and encouragement for the kids as they do the activities. I was most excited to try the reading readiness activities and was impressed at how quickly my son caught on and began zipping through the activity! He also really loved the number tracing activity and throwing them in the bucket! He likes throwing things in buckets in real life too! We think this is a perfect app to get darted with to get your preschooler ready for kindergarten as well as for reviewing and reinforcing basic foundation skills that they will use for the rest of their lives!
Download the app for free here: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/preschool-kids-games-kid-puzzles/id543851593?mt=8
By: Suzanne Golden, M.S., CCC-SLP
Welcome to the first post in a series about ideas for fun summer activities and how to tie in speech/language skills to your summer fun!
Hopefully this summer will be full of sunny beach days! But, for those times that Mother Nature doesn’t cooperate, it is a good idea to have some ideas for some indoor fun up your sleeve. In my house, a go-to inside summer fun activity is Sand Dough.
4 cups of sand (we used beach sand)
3 cups of flour
1 ¼ cups of warm water
¼ cup of oil
Mix all of the ingredients together and knead until dough forms.
*After we mixed the initial recipe together we added a little more sand/flour to make the consistency a little bit less sticky.
Once the dough is formed it’s time to play! We found some beach rocks and small beach toys to use with the dough. My daughter enjoyed playing with her sand dough all week!
How to tie in speech/language skills:
I hope you enjoy this fun summer activity and can use it to tie in speech/language skills to your summer adventures!
Does your child receive speech therapy at school during the school year but not during the summer?
By: Suzanne Golden, M.S., CCC-SLP
Storytelling is an essential language skill. Storytelling not only allows children to convey information about themselves, but it also encourages creativity and imagination. Below are some great apps that are engaging, fun and promote building storytelling skills.
Rory’s Story Cubes
Developer: The Creativity Hub Ltd.
Available on: iPad, iPhone and Android devices
Description: Rory’s Story Cubes is the app version of the story-telling dice game, Rory’s Story Cubes. This app consists of 9 dice with 6 pictures on each dice. Shake your device to shuffle the dice and see where they land! Once the dice have settled, you can rearrange the dice to tell a story from the pictures.
Speech and Language Use: This app is great because it promotes creative storytelling while providing visual cues through the use of the story dice. Your child can tell the story by him/herself or you can take turns picking a dice to put in order to tell the story. With 54 different pictures, the options for story telling are virtually endless. As an extension activity you can save a picture of the story dice and have your child draw his/her own picture to go with the story!
Draw and Tell
Developer: Duck Duck Moose
Available on: iPad, iPhone
Description: Draw and Tell is a creative and interactive story and picture/video creating app! Choose between a blank canvas or premade pictures. Once you have created the scene, it’s time to record! Move around the pictures on your canvas and record your voice to tell the story. This app allows for endless scene/story combinations and creativity!
Speech and Language Use: The multitude of backgrounds, stickers and drawing tools allows for many opportunities to use language. Begin by talking about the setting of the story and choose the appropriate background. Scroll through the stickers to choose the characters and then brainstorm the story line. Once your child has set the scene, it’s time to record the script. This app promotes sequencing, vocabulary development and creativity!
By: Suzanne Golden, M.S., CCC-SLP
Christmas is coming and it is time to start thinking about what toys to buy for your children. As always, I am an advocate for thinking about language development, even when buying toys! I have a list of my favorite toys that I love playing with when I work with my clients and when I play with my daughter. These toys are open-ended, fun and best of all – they are great for expanding language! Here are some of my favorites to choose from:
Kitchen Set and Pretend Food
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