Category: play

Make Nature Faces

Make Nature Faces

[ 0 ] March 20, 2012 |

This is a creative way to explore nature with children. Grab a bag and take a walk around your neighborhood. Collect natural materials from your yard, a local park or while hiking. Almost anything can be used to create faces – sticks, leaves, pine cones, rocks, acorns, seeds, flowers, etc. Kids can sort or count the items before they begin. Arrange your found objects into faces (or robots, aliens…) Optional: Use chalk to outline the face first. Make your nature family then take a picture to document it.

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Looking for Leprechauns and other ways to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with Kids

Looking for Leprechauns and other ways to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with Kids

[ 0 ] March 14, 2012 |

Here is my list of things to learn and do in honor of St. Patrick’s Day. My favorite is taking the kids to the park in search of leprechauns.

Read a good book with your children first, like Leprechauns Never Lie by Lorna and Lecia Balian; then find a park near you and take a hike in search of these mischievous characters. If it’s a nice day and you don’t find any, you and your kids may still enjoy the walk looking for early signs of spring. Check our events calendar for local parades and other happenings.

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Pretend Play is a Literacy Activity

Pretend Play is a Literacy Activity

[ 5 ] February 15, 2012 |

Your 3-year-old can recognize the first letter of her name when she sees it in print or maybe hit the right letters on the electronic game when the recorded voice says “B… ball… B.”  You think she’s pretty smart.  She is, but not because she’s beginning to recognize letters.  Let’s face it – chimpanzees can learn to do that.  Where you can really see and celebrate her developing literacy skills is in her pretend play.

Providence Children’s Museum is a fabulous place for school vacation fun!  Encounter a glorious golden eagle, a tiny owl, a red-tailed hawk and other majestic birds of prey in Wingmasters.  In The Hoopoe Show, see a hilarious mime’s magic tricks and illusions.  It’s a Paper Caper when kids fold and crease paper to create fabulous flying machines!  And sing and laugh to silly stories and funny fast-paced songs by Keith Munslow.  For more information, visit www.ChildrenMuseum.org.

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What Are You an Expert At?

What Are You an Expert At?

[ 1 ] January 19, 2012 |

That’s a question that 22 Rhode Island preschool teachers and daycare providers asked their 3- and 4-year-old children as part of “Making Learning Visible: Inspiration Takes Flight,” a five-month professional development seminar offered by Ready to Learn Providence and supported by Providence Children’s Museum.

It turns out that the children are experts at lots of things. Many of them know how to do crafts from creating a crown to drawing happy faces, dinosaurs, monsters and self-portraits to making a sugar flour cake. They are excellent movers; they know how to run, climb on bars, dance, and do flips and jumping jacks. They have mastered many of their important daily routines, such as being a big brother, tying shoes, cleaning up, and sleeping. And not surprisingly, they are fantastic players. They can tell you how to fly like Superman, play the card game Face-Off, put on a performance, and even how to pretend to be a dog.

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Telling the Story of Play

Telling the Story of Play

[ 1 ] December 20, 2011 |

At Providence Children’s Museum, we know that the child at play is often the child at work. And for some time now, we have been documenting children’s play, trying to capture that “aha” moment when, after interacting with materials and experimenting in different ways, he or she suddenly understands something new. In this process, which belongs entirely to the child, he or she is learning.

Special events planned at Providence Children’s Museum during school vacation. See Sparky’s Puppets perform favorite tales from Aesop’s Fables. Sing and dance to funny original songs from rock ‘n roll trio Rolie Polie Guacamole. Join The Rhythm Room for rollicking world percussion, horns, drums, guitars and piano. And it’s a Block Party when kids build cities and create towering structures!

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Taking Chances During Play

Taking Chances During Play

[ 2 ] December 14, 2011 |

It’s a windy but sunny day in early fall, and my son and I slowly approach the gigantic spider web climbing net at Tuckertown Park in South Kingstown. My three year old is the tentative sort, and the conversation goes something like this:

“Come on, Devin. Let’s climb the spider web!”

“No, no, Mommy. I too little.”

“Nah, you’re not too little. You can do it.”

“I too scared, Mommy.”

“What are you scared of?”

“I scared I gonna fall.”

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Parenting Simply: Pinecone Soup

Parenting Simply: Pinecone Soup

[ 2 ] December 7, 2011 |

Sometimes as parents, we are granted wonderful moments of true clarity. For me, one such moment came after an afternoon walk with my daughters. Our walk led to the discovery of an abundant supply of tiny pinecones at the end of our street, which immediately needed to be gathered, stowed in the back of a tricycle, and brought home to make pinecone soup. With nothing else on my calendar, no where else to be but right here, I carried pinecones and tiny dishes and sat down to share in the meal. It was delicious…

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Kidoinfo’s List of Top 10 Toys for Kids

Kidoinfo’s List of Top 10 Toys for Kids

[ 6 ] December 2, 2011 |

Geek Dad shared what he thinks are the 5 best toys of all time on Wired recently. He lists items—things many of us may overlook as toys—that he feels no kid should be without. “All five should fit easily within any budget, and are appropriate for a wide age range so you get the most play out of each one.”

We agree these are wonderful play things and in fact have written about all of them before on Kidoinfo. We also love gadgets and gizmos but realize kids do not need all the bells and whistles in order to play and have fun. We are adding 5 more items to the list making it the Kidoinfo Top 10 Toys for Kids. No batteries needed for the toys listed, just some free time and a little bit of imagination. Assembly optional, not required.

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Risky Business

Risky Business

[ 1 ] November 16, 2011 |

At Providence Children’s Museum, we witness wonderful moments of learning through play all around us, every day: from discovering how to use a popsicle stick as a clay cutting tool to learning that Pilgrim children didn’t use forks, and that engineering a giant fountain with two friends is much easier than constructing alone. But some of the most inspiring learning moments, often the most intense and real, involve taking a risk. When children (and grown-ups) take risks or, as Tim Gill said, “actively seek out uncertainty,” they explore their own limits and learn about the world. Risk is the ingredient that keeps us engaged and it helps make play more meaningful.

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Joyful Learning

Joyful Learning

[ 0 ] October 24, 2011 |

By Cathy Saunders, Director of Education, Providence Children’s Museum Now that kids are back in school, I’ve been contemplating the challenge of keeping learning a joyful experience rather than a task that must be endured.  At the Children’s Museum, we know that the best kind of learning happens when the learner wants to acquire new […]

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