Meet the No Internet Dino

Have you ever been without internet and needed a way to entertain the kids for a few minutes? Google Chrome’s No-Internet Dino Game to the rescue. The 16-bit game only appears when you’re not connected to the internet. If you try to find a website through the Chrome browser when you’re disconnected, a jumping T-Rex […]

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The Value of Routines

Simple morning and nighttime routines can reduce stress for everyone and help your pre-teen feel more confident and secure. Routines don’t have to be rigid to be effective. Talk with your middle-graders about what tasks must be accomplished every morning and evening, and brainstorm how they want to organize and achieve those. For example, you […]

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5 Back-to-School Prep Tips

August means back to school, and the start of a new academic year means changes for the whole family. So we’ve read several expert posts and condensed the best of the best advice into five back-to-school prep tips. Don’t wait for the first bell to start your school-year schedule. First, ease the family back into a […]

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Create a Magical Reading Nook

Make reading a destination in your home by creating a space designed just for enjoying books. Make it warm, creative, and screen-free. Here’s a list of things to consider when creating your reading nook: Location. Your reading nook doesn’t have to be large. It can be a corner, some unused space under a stairway, a […]

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Summer Fun for Tweens

When my kids were in later elementary and middle school, we’d mark the start of summer vacation with water balloons. I’d spend the last day of school filling and tying  (my fingers were so sore!) water balloons so they’d be ready when the kids got home. I stationed laundry baskets filled with water balloons around […]

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Keep your child reading

Parent’s often want to know if their children are reading at or above their grade level. Another critical question is how interested my child is in reading. Young middle-grade readers  (ages eight to ten) should be transitioning from learning to read to reading to learn and be reading independently. They should be able to read […]

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Are Audiobooks Good for Kids?

With ubiquitous tablets and phones, a child’s first introduction to reading may be audiobooks. But does this help or hurt kids in the long run? While audiobooks are no substitute for reading aloud with your children, they can supplement that time. Audiobooks can help build imagination and reading skills. When a child is learning to […]

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Making the Most of the Commute

When measured before the pandemic, Americans’ average one-way commute time was just more than 27 minutes.* As we inch back toward ‘normal,’ we once again find ourselves spending more time in the car. So let’s explore some creative ways to use that almost one hour in the car with our kids every day. Build Vocabulary. […]

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Word Games to Play with Kids

Have you discovered WORDLE? The online word game gives you six chances to guess a five-letter word. It gives you clues by showing if you’ve guessed a letter in the word and if it’s in the correct position. There is a new WORDLE to solve every day. It’s a great game to play with the […]

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Creating Your Own Bedtime Adventures

Many of our readers know that Night Buddies adventures grew out of bedtime stories Sands created with his son. They dreamed up Crosley, the red crocodile, then thought about all the adventures a boy could have when he couldn’t go to sleep. Next time your kids say, “tell me a story…” go with it. Start […]

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A Holiday with Books

When you think about books for the holidays, think beyond gifts (though books do make great gifts for every age). To get you started, here are five creative ways to incorporate books into your holiday celebration. Book Advent Calendar. Wrap 24 small books and open one each day to read with your child. This works great […]

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Night Buddies in the Kitchen

One thing young readers notice right away about the Night Buddies Adventures is that Crosley loves pineapple cheesecake. One way to enhance the Night Buddies reading experience is to make a pineapple cheesecake with your child. Cooking together is not only fun and yummy but can also build reading skills. Start by finding a simple […]

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