Tag Archives: early childhood

Do you have a Mentor?

First The Photo:  Do you recognize where this lighthouse is from?  Hint number one:  It is located in the state that has the most lighthouses in the country.  Hint number two: It is not on an ocean shore.  Have you figured it out?

Second The Questions:  Do you have a person that serves as a guiding light in your life?  Someone who guides you in your decisions?  Talk to an adult and learn about the mentors in their life.  Most people have learned from someone else along the way.  Mentors can be very important people who support and encourage us along life’s path.

Third Next Steps:  Our third Explore Galore Kids Book:   The Guiding Light of Others available here, is a wonderful, in-depth exploration of the mentors in our lives.  It helps children of all ages begin to talk about the people in their lives who love and support them.  This book is a moving journey for parents to take with their children as they begin to explore how mentors can serve as guiding lights throughout our entire life.

Discuss:  Look up where lighthouses are located.  Talk about why they exist.  They were meant to show weary travelers that land was close by, but navigate with care.  What do you think people on ships were feeling when they finally saw the light of land?  What do you think life was like living for many weeks and months in the close quarters of a ship? Can you imagine the important role that lighthouses served back in the day of ocean travel?  What do you think it was like to live in a lighthouse?  How was there light in the tower before electricity was discovered?  Don’t know the answers to these questions?  Look them up?  Go deeper, learn together.  Find the closest lighthouse to your home and plan a road trip.

Looking for more Explore Galore Kids fun, try one of our books: http://exploregalorekids.com/merchandise/explore-books/

For the Love of Learning!

jefferson

First The Picture: Can you guess where this was taken?  A place celebrating the history of a nation.  A quote from a learned forefather of our country.  If you can guess that place, great, if you can narrow it down to the monument, Wonderful!

Second The Question:  What is your favorite subject to learn about?  Do you enjoy it because it comes easy for you, or do you enjoy it because it challenges you? Do you love the idea of school or dread it?  Besides school name, some other ways you learn… What things do you learn about outside of a traditional classroom?

Third Next Steps:  Start a pen pal or e-pal relationship with an older relation or mentor.  Start with a fun introduction of yourself.  Some creative ways to introduce yourself in writing include: try to write a poem about yourself.  Or write out your full name and attempt to use each letter as  a trait that describes you.  (see below) Once you do a fun intro, start a dialogue with your pen pal, by asking questions about their likes and dislikes, memories etc.  Feel free to use the questions from this blog.  Or if it is easier simply do the blog with them in writing.  Share your answers of each post and then invite them to send back their responses!  It is a great way to build a long distance relationship with a loved one!

Example:(here is one I did with my daughter’s name)

  • M: Miracle of watching you grow up each day
  • A: Adoring and kind, in so many ways
  • D: Dramatic and darling, our dainty spitfire
  • I: Intelligent mind, a little live wire
  • S: Sweet Maddie girl, always gentle and caring
  • O: Outgoing and fun, good at leading and sharing
  • N: Natural born traveler, you love someplace new
  • E: Enthusiastic and happy, people gravitate to you
  • L: Loving to others, from human to beast
  • I: Imaginative mind, with a memory that won’t cease
  • Z: Zany and silly, you’re a crazy young girl
  • A: Adventurous spirit, out to shake up the world
  • B: Bright shining star with a world to explore
  • E: Energetic and motivated, always pushing for more
  • T: Tender and loving to your sweet baby brother
  • H: Heart of an angel, there can never be another, Madison!

Looking for more Explore Galore Kids fun, try one of our books: http://exploregalorekids.com/merchandise/explore-books/

 

The Colors of Me

 

color3

First the Picture:  For this photo don’t focus on where it was taken, instead try to guess what is happening in this photo?  Have you ever been to a similar event? Have you ever seen such brilliant color?

Second the Question:  Think of the colors in your life.  If joy was a color, which would it be?  If anger glowed a brilliant hue what would you imagine it as?  If you tried to describe your feelings as colors can you name each emotion and a matching shade?  Sometimes it is easier to discuss feelings if you can identify them as a color and then try to describe or show their intensity through color.

Third Next Steps: Summertime is a time of brilliant colors; in flowers, butterflies, birds, sunshine, translucent waters and intense greens.  It can be a wonderful segway for kids to see colors in the world and use them to identify their feelings.  Start by taking a walk out through nature.  Notice the colors in the world.  Point out each color and try to talk about what emotion each color represents to you. Use lots of descriptive words and then help then identify what emotion each color represents for them.  There are no wrong answers, and even the youngest children can add in their input.

Create:  When you get home make a color jar..take an old recycled water bottle or a small jelly jar.  Fill it half way with oil..any type: sunflower oil, vegetable oil..or baby oil is the best since it is virtually clear.  Then add a few drops of food coloring.  Let your child pick the color.  Once you have the oil dyed the color they like.  Fill the rest of the bottle with water.  Glue on the top.  This is a great “emotion bottle”  When your child gets angry or upset have them shake shake shake the bottle until the water and oil blends.  Then tell them to hold the bottle, sit quietly and wait to talk until the colored oil and clear water completely separate .  This is a great visual way for children to “count to ten”  It basically gives them time to calm their emotions and bring themselves back to center, while giving them a distraction to watch that is calming as well.  Enjoy!

color13w

Looking for more Explore Galore Kids fun, try one of our books: http://exploregalorekids.com/merchandise/explore-books/

Road Trip USA

road sign collage

First The Picture:  Summer time is a fun time to jump in the car and explore the world around you.  Whether you are road tripping an hour to Gramma’s house or across the country to see the wonders of America.  There are so many fun things to discover, places to see, people to meet and things to learn about. Pull out a map and find the destinations illustrated in our road trip collage.  These are all signs that we have seen while driving through the roadways of the USA.

Second The Questions:  Where are your favorite destinations for road trips?  Do you like to explore big cities, or do you like to head out on rustic camping adventures?  Do you enjoy the journey towards a destination best, or do you like the trip back home better?  Do your family road trips typically involve a visit with a relatives?  Or do you usually plan your journeys to include state parks to hike through?  Do you go to the same place each year or do you road trip to new adventures each time? Where would you like to go next?

Third Next Steps: Map out a dream road trip.  First determine your mode of transportation.  Would you rather travel by bus, car, train, camper or maybe even boat?  Next determine what you would most like to see.  The largest ball of twine or the deepest cave?  An orca whale breach out of the surf, or a chance to pet a seal on a rocky Maine coastline. To walk in Laura Ingalls Wilder’s footsteps or see Abraham Lincoln’s birthplace?  To see Old Faithful’s spray or view Teddy Roosevelt’s profile on Mount Rushmore? There are so many amazing sites here in these United States that the choices are endless.  It might be fun to search images on-line and pull up some fun places to explore across our great country.   If you already have a road trip planned..click on our Create Together page and assemble some fun Look and Find jars to take with on your journey.   Remember there is nothing like the thrill of a Road Trip to bring out the explorer in all of us.  Enjoy the adventure!

Looking for more Explore Galore Kids fun, try one of our books:

If you could be an animal for a day

dolphin

First:  This picture could be taken in many places..a zoo, a marine park, or a nature habitat.  There are many opportunities to see dolphins up close.  Look on a map and find the places that house dolphins for observation.

Second: If you could be an animal for a single day, which animal would you be?  What qualities attracted you to the species you chose? Do you want to swim, run, walk, fly, or crawl?  Did you consider what the animals ate or where they lived?

Third: Take Next Step: This is the subject of my first Explore Galore Kids Book, available here on this blog under the “Make it Your Own” link.  You can also find it on Amazon. It is an adventure book, where you provide the adventure from your own imagination. Thinking through the choices as you consider which animal you would be.

Want to add to the imaginative fun? Go on a nature hike at a local park, or nature center.  Look for animal tracks.  Spy potential animal homes.  Think about the different species around you, from bugs and spiders to reptile and mammals.  Talk about the different classifications of animals.  What make s spider a spider?  What makes a mammal different from reptiles?  Don’t know?  That is ok..Take the next step and look it up.  Do you know what animals are native to your climate?  What does it mean to be native?

Name another type of climate..Can you guess what type of animals would live there?  Why?

Explore More: Finally a fun Next Step is bringing along your camera or phone and trying to take pictures of animals in the wild.  The trick is:  hold your camera very still because animals often are camera shy and try to run away.

Enjoy your adventure!

Looking for more Explore Galore Kids fun, try one of our books: http://exploregalorekids.com/merchandise/explore-books/

Splash!

splash

First The Photo: Where was this photo taken.  You can almost smell the salt air as you see the ocean water splashing off the lava beaches.  This is an island in the Gulf of Mexico.  Locals drive on the left side of the road, on the right side of the car.  It is a popular destination for cruise traffic.  Can you guess where it is?

Second The Question:  When the sun heats up and summer is in full swing what is your favorite way to cool off?  Do you have a favorite thing to do in the water?  Do you prefer fresh water or salt water? Do you have a source of water close to where you live?  Can you try to name all of the different types of waterways? example: A river, lake, etc.

Third Take Next Step: Read about what makes water different.  Why is the ocean water salty while lakes and rivers flow with fresh water?  What different animals, plants and life forms prefer salt water?  Can you try to mix table salt into tap water and get it to dissolve.  How much can you get to dissolve?  Try heating it, does that help the water to become more saturated with salt?

Explore: Go to a local pet store and observe the fish tanks.  What is the first difference you notice between salt and fresh water fish? Can you name all of the differences you see.  Why do you believe the creatures are different?  If you live close to a body of water bring a net and try to capture fresh aquatic life. Bring a magnifying glass and see if you can make observations about the plants and animals up close.

Looking for more Explore Galore Kids fun, try one of our books: http://exploregalorekids.com/merchandise/explore-books/

Summer time is family time

 

 

Remember the steps of the post..

  • First The Photo:  Where do you think this was taken?  Can you find it on a map?  If you think you know the answer share it back..This one should be pretty easy if you look for landmarks
  • Second The Questions:  Start the discussion:
    • What is your favorite landscape?
      • Do you like rolling hills?
      • The flat Midwestern farm land?
      • Jagged peaks?
      • Or seaside?
    • Start a mini vacation in your mind by imagining your most relaxing landscape..
  • Third Next Steps:
    • Easy one: Go out for a walk together and point out the things that you like in your favorite landscape.  Use the word and help your kids to understand what a landscape is.  Point out favorite vistas!
    • Fun at Home:  Head home after your walk and pull out the dough..make your own and use pre-purchased.  Challenge each other to make your favorite thing in a landscape and see if you can guess what the other person made.  Is it a tree, a lake, a hill, a cliff.. This is a fun way to add in some basic fine motor skills, with a purpose.  Plus this is something kids of almost any age or ability can do.

Looking for more Explore Galore Kids fun, try one of our books: http://exploregalorekids.com/merchandise/explore-books/