Gone Fishing!

Gone Fishing!

I’m taking a blog break for the month of July, having some new creative explorations. I’ll be back in a few weeks with adventures to share. In the meantime, enjoy the summer sun (unless you are an Australian friend), study the stars, play with a child, paint a picture (or a wall), write a song … Continue reading

Unbored All Summer Long

Unbored All Summer Long

If I had to spend all summer with a group of kids and only one book, I know what I’d pick: Joshua Glenn and Elizabeth Foy Larsen’s Unbored: The Essential Field Guide to Serious Fun. This book is a marvel. It is full of activities, experiments, ideas to explore and plans to change the world. … Continue reading

How Do Scientists Think?

How Do Scientists Think?

When I was in school we learned—or thought we learned—how scientists worked. Scientists, we were told, followed the 5-step scientific method. First they came up with a question, then they designed an experiment, collected data, and drew conclusions to answer the question. I can easily envision my scientist friends shaking their heads and saying, “If … Continue reading

A Poke in the I for Poetic Fun

A Poke in the I for Poetic Fun

I love concrete poetry. The combination of poetry and art speaks to me—and I love the way it gives students with differing strengths a chance to shine. Concrete poetry is the graffiti of the poetry world—its messages as much graphic as literary. Recently I ran across a wonderful collection of concrete poems for all ages, … Continue reading

Less is More #5: Cook Something

Less is More #5: Cook Something

What’s more basic than cooking–and eating? Summer is the perfect time to cook together, whether you want simple-get-food-on-the-table plans or something to stretch your palate or your cooking skills. Cooking together is fun. It makes a great family activity, but I also love cooking with my friends. There is nothing quite like preparing and eating … Continue reading

Less is More #4: Tell Your Stories

Less is More #4: Tell Your Stories

Last year Bruce Feiler published a blog in The New York Times that hit a chord in many families. In it he described research by Drs. Marshall Duke and Robyn Fivush that found the more children knew about their family’s history, the stronger their sense of control over their lives and the higher their self-esteem. … Continue reading

Less is More #3: Unplug and Play a Game

Less is More #3: Unplug and Play a Game

In the quest for a simpler more creative summer, one of the key steps may be to cut (hopefully not literally) the electronic cord. Unplug, at least part of the day, and help children learn games that do not require electronic assistance. Classic Summer Games. A Less-is-More summer could not be complete without some classic … Continue reading

Less is More #2: Play with Stuff

Less is More #2: Play with Stuff

This is the second in a series of posts on strategies for a simpler, yet creative, summer. “Less is More #1” discussed letting children explore the world in search of a bit of adventure. Today I’d like to talk about playing with stuff. Not toys. Stuff. Every parent knows that toddlers are likely to have … Continue reading

Family Fun for June: Less is More #1

Family Fun for June: Less is More #1

I enjoy doing projects with kids. I especially enjoy doing projects with kids I love. And so, when I write “Family Fun” suggestions each month, they are full of activities and projects for families to do together. But the truth is, I never expect families to do most of them—I offer a selection so that … Continue reading