Showing posts sorted by relevance for query music. Sort by date Show all posts
Showing posts sorted by relevance for query music. Sort by date Show all posts
Showing posts sorted by relevance for query music. Sort by date Show all posts
Showing posts sorted by relevance for query music. Sort by date Show all posts

Looking for Free Printables? Have you heard about the site Free Printable Online?

Free Printables and Coloring Sheets? Yes, please!

Oh, how we love free things to print out. I know you do too. You must meet, Jenny at Free Printable Online. Jenny knows free printables. If you're looking for games and activities for kids, you'll find coloring pages and worksheets perfect for homeschool and preschool lessons. There are coupons and clipart to print out too.


Customizable Christmas Tree Card from Free Printable Online.
You can customize Christmas and holiday cards and invitations right on the website.  In the printable craft category, you can print tons of cute origami activities. There's even a section dedicated to music with sheet music you can print out to play the piano.


Shape Matching free printable worksheet for preschoolers from Free Printable Online
Here's a sample preschool worksheet printable.
The site is super easy to navigate. Printable categories are clearly listed in the sidebar including: invitations, cards, worksheets, lessons, calendars, coupons, calendars, music, games, crafts, activities, and quotes and sayings. There's even a category listing the most recent printables added to the site.


free printable cat template craft activity
We printed templates from Free Printable Online for a paper craft.
The kids and I printed out the printable activity templates and made paper silhouette art with the animal templates. We cut out the animal templates, traced them onto colored construction paper, and pasted them onto our background. Mayhem loved customizing the animal templates, so  the mouse was scaled for the cat.


Template cat and mouse papercraft activity for preschool kids
Mayhem made a catosaur and mouseosaurus with the free printable templates.
Tag, you're it! Hop over and create something wonderful with your little ones. It makes preschool paper projects easy. There is so much to print out!  You might also like are Free Printables and Coloring Pages page.

Coloring Book Pages for Teen Girls: Teenagers

Coloring Pages for Boys and Teens: An Expert Level Coloring Book

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Inspiring Kids to be More Creative can Boost Self Esteem

 Different Ways to Inspire Creativity in Your Child 

As a parent, it's often challenging to see your child struggling, especially with their creative endeavors. It's essential to inspire children to explore their passions and interests. For young girls, especially, it can be difficult not to get pulled along by peers and lose sight of personal interests and passions. One way to help all kids find their voice and unique passion is to inspire their creative flow with lots of creative activities. Encourage your boys and girls to try something outside of their comfort zone!


This post contains Amazon and other affiliate links for your convenience.



different ways to inspire creativity in kids
School plays are a creative outlet that builds self-confidence
 and life long friendships.


If you follow along on this blog, you know that kids being creative is our lifeblood. Kids Creative Chaos is not only our name, but our mantra. Creativity is often a chaotic event, but it needs to take place! Never choose a clean house over letting a child explore their creativity. Squelching creativity can have unwanted outcomes. Empower your kids to be themselves, explore their creativity, and improve their self-esteem in the process! And never, never, fall into the old stereotypes of labeling activities for boys or for girls. Without even knowing it, you can be killing a child's self-worth and dreams. As we always say, let them try, try try!

Inspiring creativity is a challenging tasks for most parents. Kids often choose not to do something simply because their parents have suggested it. Other times, they may feel insecure about trying something new. Try to encourage different creative pursuits as an outlet for self-esteem, fellowship, and mental health. Here are a few simple ways on how to cultivate your child’s creativity. 




Musical Creative Expression for Kids
Mayhem in a school band production.


Introduce kids to different types of crafts


Introducing your child to different ways to be creative allows their mind to develop away from the rigid confines of the creativity taught in many schools. It shows children the art of critical thinking and developing passions beyond the ordinary. Ask your child what interests them, but also give them options and ideas to inspire their creative and critical thinking.


If you wonder what this might look like, consider introducing your kids to different expressions of art that inspire creativity. For example, listen to music with them, discuss musical instruments and let them try one. Many cities have musical petting zoos or other opportunities to test an instrument.



Activities for Creative Expression



Creative Expression and the Arts for Kids
Jake in an adaptation of Brother's Grimm.



You can also show your kids different forms of creative expression with painting and other arts and crafts. Allow them to play and explore. The earlier kids start experimenting with creativity, the better chance it will have an affect on their emotional stability and self-esteem. So, be sure to take your kids to museums, the theater, and to music concerts to inspire their senses and allow them to engage in all sorts of artistic pursuits. If you want to learn more about that, here's an article from Berkeley on why the arts matter.


On a side note, always remember to read with your children and encourage critical discussion on the book and its themes. A child with a curious mind will find it easier to access their personal creativity. 



Surrealist Art Activity for Elementary Children



Give Kids creative gifts


Giving a child and exciting gift that isn't clothes or a video game, might inspire them to think creatively or get actively moving and making art. If you're struggling for ideas for your daughter, there are many gifts for girls to choose from that don't need to sit within the confines of gendered stereotypes. For example, you could buy her a zine-making kit. Firstly, making things helps kids to be more creative, but secondly, creating their own magazine can encourage kids to use their voice for good. Zines are a great way for children of all ages and genders to write and be creative. Click here for gift ideas that are targeting boys but can work for either gender. My daughter always hated to be excluded from toy cars, trains, and Transformers and my son loves to use hot pink as an accent color for sunglasses, hats, or other accessories. He gets a kick out of people giving him a hard time. Self-confidence at work!




Books about the Arts for Kids



Allow kids to explore 


Finally, one of the most important ways to inspire creativity within your child is to allow them to explore on their own. For a child, exploring comes in many shapes and forms, from creative play to fashion. If you want your child to develop a unique identity and a sense of themselves, they have to learn what they like and don't like.



See how we encouraged our daughter to dress however she pleased.



Kids have to try out activities and get things wrong. Making mistakes is an excellent way for a child to learn, and this can also be applied to their creative endeavors. So, give your kids some paint or a dress-up box and encourage them to explore. Then, stay engaged in their exploration and find out more about what they are doing and why, but never force it- being an over zealous parent can backfire. Play it cool, and watch your kids have fun with the skills you helped to create.



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Christmas Gift Ideas for Tweens: Gift Guide Review

Find the Best Christmas Gifts for Preteens (Tweens)


Searching for the best Christmas gift ideasChristmas gift ideas for tweens? Check out our gift guide for tween boys and girls aged 9-12 yrs. These Christmas gift ideas for tweens were tested by our staff's own children and have received a two thumbs up! 

This post contains Affiliate links.




Finding the right gift for preteens is tough, because they’re not little kids anymore, but they’re not quite teenagers yet. Most tweens are outgrowing their favorite toys and developing their own tastes. What they loved yesterday is old news! Tweens often like gifts that are related to their interest and seem cool and fun: Think Nifty

Because shopping for teens and tweens is difficult, it's tempting to take the easy way out and give them money or a gift card, but a great gift is much more memorable and lets them know that you really care. Below are some of our top picks for teen and tween Christmas gifts.


5 Top Picks for Tweens Gift Guide Review


  • Fujifilm Instax Mini 9 Camera



holiday gift idea for preteen tween girl girls


Our tween girls love this camera! Nifty is its middle name. The Instant Camera is the perfect gift for tween girls. It’s stylish and it's an excellent value for the price. The Fuji camera comes in a range of funky colors and uses automatic exposure to help make it easy to use for beginners. All you have to do is turn the power on, adjust the dial, take the photo and wait for the film to develop. The tiny photos instantly pop out like old fashioned Polaroid pictures.

The camera is compact and lightweight so tweens can easily carry it around with them and even take photos one-handed. A highlight is the simplicity of the design because it doesn’t overwhelm kids with features and accessories they won’t use. Be sure to stock up on lots of film, kids love taking pictures of everyone during the holidays!

  • My Cinema Light Box

Last year, this was a hit with our preteens and tweens! A cinema light box is another nifty gift that helps tweens express their personality by showcasing a message they can personalize. Kids can share their own fun or inspiring messages to friends and family. Plus, there are lots of fun emojis included and plenty of room to add a range of messages that tweens will love. The light box has a cool color changing background with different settings that include fade, flash, and strobe to give a variety of effects. This is a truly unique gift for theater and other creative kids. Put their name in lights under the tree and brighten your preteen’s holidays.



  • Kanken Classic Backpack

The iconic Kanken backpack design is Retro which automatically translates to cool these days. Available in a wide range of colors, the large capacity storage space allows for plenty of room for school supplies and tablets. In addition to the main compartment, it has two side pockets and a front zippered pocket. The laptop pouch in the main compartment is perfect for a 13" Macbook Pro but won’t fit any larger laptops. Material is durable and water resistant, so if you're tweens are outdoorsy, it’s a great bag to take on hikes.





  • Electronic Drum Pad Set

Music lovers will have hours of fun with the electronic roll up drum pad set. Tweens can learn about the different sounds a drum kit makes and develop a sense of rhythm by playing a beat along to their favorite music. Use it with headphones to play at night and it won’t disturb your neighbors.

An electronic drum set pad is a great alternative to a full size drum set. Who has the room for a full-size drum set? It’s also easy to roll up and carry, so your kids can take it anywhere. We bought one of these for our tween boy last year. Pardon the pun, but it was a hit! We also bought this electric roll up piano for our musical tween daughter. She takes it with her everywhere she goes!





  • Crystal Growing Kit 

Crystal growing kits are a hit with 9 and 10 year-olds. If your preteen is into science or shows an interest in precious gems, the crystal growing kit is a perfect gift idea. Kids can grow red, blue, and white crystals and monitor their progress day by day as they transform into fully grown crystals. Once they’ve grown, add them to an LED display to show them off in their full glory. How cool is that?






These Christmas gift ideas for tweens are some of the best rated gifts for preteens on Amazon and have been proven hits with our own kids. If you didn’t find the perfect gift for your preteen, check out some more cool suggestions on Good Old Gifts. Hopefully, you'll find a gift suggestion that matches your preteen’s interests so you can give them something they’ll truly love this Christmas.



Be sure to follow us on Instagram and Pinterest to stay up to date on our reviews and travel tips!


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Christmas Gift Ideas for Tweens: Gift Guide Review





What are Good Outdoor Games to Play?

10 Great Outdoor Games for Kids


The days of simple parties where balloons, music, and a cake with candles were enough are long gone. In 2019, fun birthday ideas are at a whole new level. You need these 10 great outdoor games for kids to get moving and enjoy their special day.
Kim and Kanye set the bar high with a "kidchella" themed party, featuring bouncy houses, a Ferris wheel, and several music stages. While you won't have the same budget as the Kardashians, take inspiration from their intuitive ideas and create a party with good outdoor games to play.
If you're arranging a summer party for your kid's birthday bash, what outdoor games can you play? Read on for the 411 on which outside games your kids will actually love!

This post contain Amazon Affiliate Links.


What are Good Outdoor Games to Play?


Outdoor Games Kids Will Love


We all know the math. Kids + Birthday parties = Chaos!
Instead of expecting kids to sit around, drink tea, and chat like adults, prepare some cool games that will burn all their pent-up party energy. We've chosen 10 outdoor games that will have your guests giggling from beginning to end. Are you ready? Let's get this party started!

1. Hop Your Way to Victory
Try a traditional sack-race to get the kids moving. Give each child a good quality burlap bag or king-size pillowcase. Line them up in a grassy area and have them hop their way to victory down a marked path.
To mix it up a little, decorate the plain sacks. Make it more challenging and make the marked path curvy. Even if you just do it the old-fashioned way, it'll get a lot of laughs on the way, Scout's honor!


2. Make Your Birthday Party Pop
Balloon stomping is one of the best group games for parties. What's a party without balloons popping?
Before the party starts, prepare by blowing up at least one balloon per guest and a few extras just in case. Tie a long string or ribbon around the end of the balloon so that it is long enough to tie around the children's ankles.
When the party gets started, tie a balloon around the ankle of each child. The aim of the game is to pop everyone else's balloon while protecting your own. The last kid with an intact balloon wins.

3. Jump to It
Let the kids blow off a little steam before you sit down to open presents. One of the best outdoor games for kids, is an outdoor bouncy house. Hiring a bouncy house is an exciting treat for the kids! It really is fun for all ages (even big kids!)
From bouncy houses and inflatable water slides to blow-up climbing walls and bouncy bungee runs, knowing which one to choose boggles the mind. Do your research to find out more about the options and you'll find the perfect match for your big outdoor birthday bash.

4. Treasure Hunt
Treasure hunts have been around a long time, but they're still one of the most interesting outside games for kids to play. Adapt the hunt depending on the ages of the guests and the style of the party. Be sure to offer prizes and other birthday party favors for the winning team.
For instance, create a list of items in nature they have to find in a certain time limit. Give each guest some magnifying glasses, binoculars, and a treasure bag for their adventure. They can search for various bugs, pinecones, daisies, leaves, and more on a nature scavenger hunt or you can hide items throughout the yard and give them a list of riddles to solve to find the next treasure. As an alternative, hide pieces of treasure and candy for the kids to find. Give them a bucket and send them on their scavenger hunt,

5. Cool Pool Party
Fun birthday ideas for the summer usually involve water. Wet and wild games give kids the chance to get soaked and cool off. A pool prize search is one of the most fun outside games for a kid's party.
Use an inflatable pool filled with water. Hide weighted treasures at the bottom of the pool. Then, fill the rest of the pool with floating toys and balls, so that it's hard to see what's at the bottom. Give the kids a time limit and tell them to find the treasures at the bottom of the pool.
If kids are a bit older and it seems too easy, try blindfolding them. Their teammates can shout out directions to help them find the treasure.

6. Use Your Noodle
One of the cheapest outside games for kids is Pool Noodle Croquet. It's budget-friendly but takes a little bit of time to set up.
Create several pool noodle arches in your back yard and stake them into the ground. Give each child a pool noodle and an inflated beach ball. The idea is to be the first to get the ball through the course of arches.

7. Make a Splash
Another variation of a classic game is water balloon baseball. It's one of the easiest outdoor games for kids and parents because it's so easy to set up.
All you need is a baseball bat and some pre-filled water balloons. Make sure the guests are ready to get soaked!

8. A Tasty Mess
Fun birthday ideas have got to include cakes and treats, right? So why not turn your dessert into a game? When played outside, this donut game is lots of fun.
Tie dangling donuts from a high place, such as a tree or doorway. Then have a donut eating race, without using hands. Chocolate donuts make the most mess, so be ready with a cleanup team when the game is over.

9. Water Shoot
Here's another outdoor water game for you. Divide the party into two teams. For each team, string a plastic sand pails onto one end of a clothesline.
The concept of this game is for each team to work together to move their bucket along the clothesline, using only the spray water guns. Of course, if you don't have enough squirt guns for the party, you could fill up plastic bottles instead. Be sure the squirt guns are powerful enough to make the pails move!

10. An In-Tents Party
Another awesome outside party activity is camping. If camping somewhere remote is too much of a task, just set up a camp ground in your backyard.

Set up tents and a supervised fire-pit. Play some camping-themed games during the day. And when it gets dark, roast some s'mores on the campfire and tell scary stories.

Keep Calm and Party On!
We hoe you like this list of outdoor games with a twist for parties. Pick one, two, or as many outside games as you want, to make your birthday bash super fun!
What if it turns out to be a rainy day and you can't have fun in the sun? For some more games inspiration, both inside and out, check out the "Games" section of our blog.


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Active Learning in Early Childhood Education

What is Active Learning?
If you're an early childhood education director, teacher, or a homeschooler of a preschooler, you will benefit ChildCare Education Institute's CCEI122: Active Learning in Early Childhood course. This course is a great way to get continuing ed course credit for any ECE program, but it is also a wonderful tool for parents of toddlers and preschoolers to educate themselves for homeschool learning. So, what is the definition of active learning in early childhood education?



This post contains Amazon Affiliate links, if you make a purchase,I get a small commission.


Active Learning in Early Childhood Education Classes

Wikipedia describes active learning as:
Active learning is a form of learning in which teaching strives to involve students in the learning process more directly than in other methods. Bonwell states that in active learning, "students participate in the process and students participate when they are doing something besides passively listening."

Sensory Play = Active Learning
As a childcare professional, I am well versed in sensory play and its connection to cognitive learning. Here on the blog, you'll find many sensory play activities and other movement games for early childhood educators. However, I wasn't aware of much of the proven science behind these preschool activities until I took CCEI's online professional development course CCEI122: Active Learning in Early Childhood.





Active Learning in Preschool Early Childhood Education

This course presents practical methods for integrating movement and active involvement across all curriculum areas, including art, language arts, mathematics, music, science, and social studies.
The course only takes about an hour of your time. Be sure to print out the handouts or save them as pdfs so that you'll have access to note taking and a record of some of the valuable ideas and knowledge base taught in the class. At course completion, you’re issued a certificate showing that you've successfully completed the 1 hr. course. Here's mine:

ECE Certificate online


Through the years, I've taken many continuing education courses. The courses offered by ChildCare Education Institute are by far the most convenient. The courses are also very informative. They not only include valuable information and recent studies in the childcare industry, but they also include sample activities that you can try with your own students.

ChildCare Education Institute® provides high-quality, online training courses and programs, applicable to those who work in an array of child care settings, including center-based care, Head Start, family child care, prekindergarten classrooms, after school environments and more. Over 150 English and Spanish training courses are available to meet licensing, recognition program, and Head Start Requirements. CCEI also has online certification programs that provide the coursework requirement for national credentials including the CDA, Director and Early Childhood Credentials. CCEI, a Council for Professional Recognition CDA Gold Standard Comprehensive training provider, is nationally accredited by the Distance Education Accrediting Commission (DEAC) and is accredited as an Authorized Provider by the International Association for Continuing Education and Training (IACET).


● 99 percent of students say they would recommend CCEI to others
● Over 4.4 million online course hours completed  
● Graduated over 12,000 early childhood professionals from CDA and other certificate programs
● Web-based coursework, available 24/7/365
● 30 hours of new content added each year
● IACET CEUs awarded for completed coursework at no additional cost
During the CCEI122: Active Learning in Early Childhood course, I had many aha moments. There were so many things that I've done in my early childhood programs where I missed valuable opportunities to incorporate movement and music in daily lesson plans for language arts, science, social studies, math, and art. The course lists out many different ideas and further explains how these activities aid in cognitive development and increase brain synapses.

ECE Certificate online

After taking the course, you’ll want to add more movement activities to your daily active learning activities. Here's a list of our most popular posts on early childhood games and sensory play ideas for preschoolers.
Circle Time Games for Active Learning in Early Childhood
Physical Activity Movement Games for Early Childhood
Marshmallow Movement Game
Sensory Tactile Alphabet Activity
Group Cooperation Games for Preschool and Early Childhood
If you're in need of continuing education for your career in early childhood, start here with our review of ChildCare Education Institute. CCEI offers many amazing continuing education courses for professional development in early childhood education. The extensive course list is sure to please even the most hard to please daycare providers and program directors. I encourage everyone involved with childcare and early childhood education to sign up for a course or two. It’s such a convenient way to expand your knowledge in early childhood education. Be sure to check it out!
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